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Published by charley, 2019-09-10 21:34:03

RSVP Montgomery September/October 2019



© 2017 A-B, Bud Light® Beer, St. Louis, MO

I ts Cohens For Your Kitchen


Indoor and Outdoor Kitchens Home Automation
Laundry Home Theater
Refrigeration LG TVs, SamSung TVs & Sony TVs
Dishwashers Bluetooth Speakers
Wine Coolers Massage Chairs
& Ice Machines Theater Seating
Grills – Gas & Charcoal

6 + We deliver con dence.

14 reply YES 14 34
38 42
Styles and trends to consider
Retro Riot

34 table TALK

Little Donkey

38 in MOTION

Bad-Axe Fun

42 signed ORIGINAL
Langley Tolbert

46 the LIST

A Who’s Who of Young Leaders

56 special feature
Fields of Gold

58 now hear this
Matthew Carroll

62 socially SEEN

74 when? what? where?

88 resource DIRECTORY


Photo by Michael Carson


SEPT / OCT 2019 RSVP 7



SEPT / OCT 2019 RSVP 9

from the GIRLS

The River Region Guide
for All Things Social

vol. 12, Iss.5

This summer has flown by, RSVP Montgomery, Inc.
and as enjoyable as it’s been, 7956 vaughn road, unit 333
we are all ready for football
games, cooler weather and montgomery, al 36116
a wardrobe change! While 334.356.4598
fashion is always evolving,
we can’t deny that it tends [email protected]
to repeat itself. Look for
inspiration in our Retro Riot
fashion spread that was a
blast putting together, thanks
to a great team. Check out
features on an RSVP favorite
hot spot, Little Donkey,
and one of Montgomery’s
newest activities, Civil
Axe Throwing, which just
opened “chop” at Kress on
Dexter. We love highlighting artists and this issue spotlights two very talented
individuals. Matt Carroll was writing songs at the age of 15 but never knew how
much he valued his voice until he almost lost it. Langley Tolbert uses a variety
of mediums to create spectacular abstracts, available in several local galleries.
With cooler temperatures calling us to get outside, Todd and Kim Sheriden’s
sunflower field featured on page 56 will make you want to take a drive… and
pick up a camera! Montgomery is home to many movers and shakers, and as
always, the LIST is full of people you’ll want to get to know. October is the
busiest time of the year and our event calendar is brimming with things for
the whole family to enjoy. Last but not least, we welcomed a new editor to the
team. Florida native, Catherine O’Connor, just moved to Montgomery from
New York and has loads of personality and artsy talent! Be sure to come to our
events and introduce yourself!


10 RSVP SEPT / OCT 2019

Fall for the New You

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While fashion is always evolving, we can’t deny that it keeps repeating itself. There’s
something about vintage-inspired style that opens a window to our past and gives
us a nostalgic feeling again and again. You don’t have to go retro all at once, but
with the right accessories and attitude you can easily revamp your wardrobe. Pair
something old with something new to bring the whole shebang to date and on trend.

Talk about glam! This classic royal
blue shirt by Glam pairs perfectly

with these printed tweed shorts
by English Factory (Welle). Add
this fun Kate Spade confetti sequin
sneaker, and you’ll be doing spirit

kicks in no time (Dillard’s).

Written by Kim Traff
Photos by Michael Carson
Styled by Suzanna Wasserman

Hair by Jen Powell
Makeup by Derricius
Chambers & Rebekah Edwards,

LUSH Makeup Art
Models: Keoshane Allen,
Carolina Anderson, Lauren

Cromwell, Anna Gibbs,
Rebekkah Runk

16 RSVP SEPT / OCT 2019

(L) This back-zip chambray dress by Lilla P (Welle
Studio) with a cotton blend fabric is a must-have for
fall that transitions to cooler weather. While it looks
awesome with these Decie leather studded booties by
Gianni Bini (Dillard’s), it can easily be worn with flats or
sneakers too! Put on the final touches with red Glenda
earrings (Welle), Quay sunnies and a convertible mini
bag by Ralph Lauren (Dillard’s).

(M) This cheerful, floral print wrap dress from A loves
A (Dillard’s) is another perfect piece that will take you
straight from summer to fall. It’s versatile enough to pair
with this Kenzie sling back flat by Frye (Dillard’s), but
imagining it with booties gives us warm fuzzies, too!

(R) We are obsessed with the pinstripe hem and pockets
on this vintage dress from Kynard Korner. Add a gin
martini, dry, and you’ll be just as stylish as the person
who wore it the first time around.

Give your wardrobe a touch of flair with this plaid corset crop top (American
Eagle) and corduroy bell bottoms from Free People (Dillard’s). Kick back in the
Corte sneaker, one of Nike’s most recognizable designs (DSW), which may be
one of our most favorite comebacks this season! This graphite starburst pendant is
great as a small statement or for layering with other necklaces (PB&J Collection).


SUNDAY LGHaarwmeanptsotfead

Oct 27

$50 Advance Tickets | $60 Week of Event

presented by RSVP Montgomery, taste, and hampstead community realty

This double V-neck tee by Lilla P (Welle) features a rib trim
with raw edges. There are many colors to choose from, but we
absolutely love it in curry for fall. The perfect crop length to
pair with your favorite Citizens of Humanity jeans (Welle) or a
skirt for date night! The knotted, striped headband (Welle) and
handmade lightning bolt necklace (PB&J Collection) offer a
touch of nostalgia that will bring on the good times.

SEPT / OCT 2019 RSVP 19

20 RSVP SEPT / OCT 2019

(L) Vintage style band tees never go out of style, and lucky for
us we don’t have to go digging for them. This Rolling Stones tee
(American Eagle) looks great knotted at the waist with this silk
smoke skirt by Free People (Dillard’s). Chunky Disruptor Filas
(DSW) and these mod, 5-inch, Lucite drop earrings (Versona)
will make your statement even bolder.

(M) Lauren looks ultrachic in a Habitual Brynlee striped top
and jeans by Citizens of Humanity. Throw on a round, woven
crossbody and oversized earrings to dress it up (Welle). Give
this look some sporty vibes with these old school burgundy
Ward Vans (DSW).

(R) Let it be said that skirts and vintage tees are all the rage this
fall. This Gianni Bini Candace A-line skirt (Dillard’s) is soft and
flowy and takes this American Eagle t-shirt up a notch. Keep it
playful with Kate Spade confetti sneakers by Keds (Dillard’s)
and a star-studded necklace by PB&J Collection.

SEPT / OCT 2019 RSVP 21

22 RSVP SEPT / OCT 2019

Animal print has always been a style staple, and
this front-zip cheetah skirt reminds us why! The
perfectly distressed, all-American styles by Free
People make it a brand everyone loves. The simple
black tee and fabulous boots by Gianni Bini are
so comfortable you’ll be wearing them every day!
Gorjana necklaces are always stylish and add the
perfect touch to any outfit, and this amazing vintage
Prada belt bag is evidence that good fashion never
goes out of style (Dillard’s).

We are forecasting paisley as a leading fashion
trend once again. This back-zip, high-neck
vintage top gives off a Woodstock vibe (Kynard
Korner). The black swoosh on these white
Nike tennies keeps the branding bold (DSW).
With square, painted-rim glasses, which are
particularly flattering to round faces, by Tory
Burch (Dillard’s) and oversized earrings
(Versona), this 70s look is too much fun!





candle cabin



8135 VAUGHN RD. | 334.244.2201

24 RSVP SEPT / OCT 2019

The flowers on this vintage top from
Kynard Korner are whispering tall tales
to this golden hour wrap mini skirt by
Sugarlips (Dillard’s). Marry the eras
with this timeless crocheted purse and
earrings from Welle Studio.

If there were a princess of Bel Air, we imagine she’d
be wearing these distressed high-waisted mom jeans
and super soft and stretchy tie-dye halter-top from
American Eagle. Strut your stuff all day long with
these Fila sneakers (DSW), and keep your eyes in
the clear with these Quay cat-eye glasses (Dillard’s).
The blue-light-blocking lenses help protect against
harmful HEV light from screens, which can prevent
headaches. Scroll the ‘gram in style!

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Kynard Korner

These corduroy pants are designed to be as free as
you. Featuring a high, paper bag waist, front tie and
wide and wonderful leg, American Eagle gets an
A+ for these bottoms. Keep the attention on these
fabulous pants by wearing a simple white bodysuit
from Free People. You’ll be looking for the catwalk
in Free People’s Bungalow buckle-strap clog
booties and Kendra Scott earrings (Dillard’s).

28 RSVP SEPT / OCT 2019


don’t happen by chance. They happen by appointment!

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Flannel in the fall is love at first sight! Keep it casual
with this grey tank and plaid button-up (American
Eagle) tied around this Free People denim mini
skirt. We love the zip-up front and distressed, frayed
hemline. These Free People Bungalow buckle-strap
clog booties (Dillard’s) will have everyone asking,
“Who’s with the band now?”


32 RSVP SEPT / OCT 2019

Turn heads in this Free People dusty-mauve satin skirt
(Dillard’s). The sleek satin fabric falls from a high, bias-
cut waist into a draped midi skirt with a rounded hem.
The simple burgundy lace-trim tank (American Eagle) is
understated but oh, so sexy. The vintage Louis Vuitton mini
purse may be small, but makes a large fashion statement.

Gianni Bini’s floral print chiffon skirt features a ruching
drawstring to give it a high-low hemline. Keep it simple up
top with a white tee by Antonio Melani and Gorjana jewels,
and go wild with the eye-catching print on this Dolce Vita
calf-hair bootie (Dillard’s). Throw in a pop of color with a
pair of golden yellow hoop earrings (Versona).

Show off your feminine silhouette with this urban jungle
wrap blouse with elastic waist and Jericho blue bell-
bottoms by Free People (Dillard’s).

For unsurpassed style, slip into the flattering fit of these Dojo
wide-leg trousers by 7 for all Mankind. We love the vintage
look of this pink and green striped button-down by Double
Zero (Welle). Roll up the sleeves, flip the collar or tie it above
the waist for a little more self-expression, and add the Reebok
Harman women’s sneaker (DSW) to spice it up. Make it
rain with accessories! We paired a delicate Gorjana necklace
(Dillard’s), green hoops (Versona) and pink headband
(Welle) for an unexpected pop to spice up the simplicity of
this outfit.

SEPT / OCT 2019 RSVP 33

By: Catherine O’Connor | Photos by Josh Moates/Kim Box Photography

A A name in the burgeoning restaurant scene


technique. Entering the doors at their Montgomery outpost (two


tortillas. Sit down at their long and winding wood bar and you’ll


find a whole lot of Mexican flavor with a Southern flair.

34 RSVP SEPT / OCT 2019

The concept began with creator, “ the marriage
Joshua Gentry, previously of Jim of southern
& Nick’s BBQ, who ate at nearly hospitality and
every Mexican restaurant he could Mexican tradition
to prepare for his own menu design. means dang
He spent time with Mexican cooks, ”good eats
adopting their tips (use dried chili
instead of fresh for consistent salsa), In that spirit, barbeque takes the place of barbacoa, with Jim
while also realizing the sisterly ‘N Nick’s notorious smoke style nestled into many a tortilla or
resemblance between Mexican tamale at Little Donkey, not to mention starring in the beef
food culture and that of the South. brisket fajitas that upon taking center stage, trail smoke in
“We put all these labels on food their wake, cast iron layered with roasted poblano peppers
that can be irrelevant sometimes. and onions. You’d believe this fajita is living its best life and
My grandmother ate pinto beans exemplifies Little Donkey’s mantra of “Mexican food with a
and cornbread for every meal, and southern soul.”
across the border... it’s black beans Other items that borrow from both sides of the border
and tamales for every meal.” include a grass-fed chili cheese burger, carried not by bun,
but tortilla, along with a variety of Mexican sandwiches
(tortas), like the Drunkenhog, so named for its side of spicy
tomato dipping sauce. There are also burritos and bowls, with
options for vegetarians. “You can be good or you can be bad,”
says their Marketing Manager, Emily Brown, with a grin.

Southern soul shines in their nationally ranked fried
chicken, which brines for up to 24 hours before a steam
fryer locks in all that juicy goodness. Try it with an elote
(Mexican style street corn) and some of the best fried
potatoes around. Condiments abound with chipotle
crema, habanero vinegar, and pickled vegetables,
classically Mexican, but also a nod to relish tradition in
the South. (Chow chow, anyone?)

Of course there’s fresh pico and guac, enough to go
around or feed a crowd - literally, as Little Donkey also
offers take-out packages and catering. Their regular
dinner menu also sees nightly additions. “Throwback
Thursday” offers an “old school taco plate” that Manager
Davis Rogers says harkens back to “the tacos your mom
used to make at home.” (It’s the only night ground beef
is served.)

Kids are welcome - they even get their own menu on Manager - Davis Rogers
the back of a lucha libre coloring mask and are sure
to love one of the customary Mexican beverages, like atmosphere of conviviality transcends and blurs cultural
horchata, rice milk steeped with vanilla and cinnamon. barriers. “This feels like home,” says Brown, Marketing
The adults can cool their palate down after some smoke Manager, “... how we are in Alabama, ya know, we all get
and spice and everything nice with Little Donkey’s “El together on Sunday and do family dinner… like food is a
Bushwackador,” the creamy concoction Southerners relationship builder and an experience that we can all get
know and love, with a frozen twist. House signature excited about.”
cocktail, “The Donkey’s Daddy,” puts a spin on the
classic jamaica, originally hibiscus, allspice and clove by
using hibiscus syrup, fresh lime, Barton’s whiskey, and
top shelf Jimador tequila.

Outside of the food and beverage selection, the team
at Little Donkey speaks passionately about how their

Speaking on community, one singular
family makes all the food coming
out of the kitchen. Cornelio, their
head chef came on after being at
Jim ‘N Nick’s, joined by his wife as
head host and his brothers as cooks.
“When we found Cornelio, we knew
we were in good hands,” Manager
Chris Thompson says. “We have a
very strong core and we are very
appreciative of that.”

English and Spanish are exchanged
among staff, the door held open for
guests, and a hug goodbye given
to regulars. It’s a place where the
marriage of southern hospitality and
Mexican tradition means dang good
eats. Odele! (Yeehaw!)

Little Donkey Family

36 RSVP SEPT / OCT 2019


SIDE + DRINK = $8.99*


7880 Vaughn Rd


340 S. Gay St


2664 Enterprise Dr

*See store for details. Valid at participating locations


SEPT / OCT 2019 RSVP 37

By: Kelly Baughman Civil Axe Throwing is the Newest
Photos by Nick Frontiero Productions Way to Have Fun and Cut
Through Stress in Montgomery

One of the trendiest and fastest growing sports
in the country is hitting a bullseye, offered in
downtown Montgomery with rave reviews. Civil Axe
Throwing is now open in the Kress Building, located
at 39 Dexter Avenue. This fun, although offbeat
way to spend an afternoon or evening may seem
intimidating at first, but General Manager, Grant
Stovall, promises it’s something for everyone. “A lot
of people are nervous when they first pick up the axe,
but usually after they throw it a couple times, they’re
hooked,” he says.

The minimum age to throw an axe is 14, and Stovall Participants must wear closed-toe shoes and are allowed
says that all participants receive a safety briefing to bring coolers for beer, wine, soda and food.
and a lesson on technique to successfully stick the
target. Civil Axe Throwing recognizes the National Axe Throwing
Federation, which was established in early 2016 to service
The space looks like an old warehouse with high the sport of axe throwing globally and facilitate inter-
ceilings, heavy duty walls and chain-link fencing league competition among members. The rule system
around the targets. Axe throwers have a large upon which the NATF was founded dates back for over
and small axe to choose from when throwing at a 12 years, having grown organically to form the basis of
wooden backed target from 15 feet away. league play for over 6,000 competitive axe throwers.

Stovall says that along with a lot of stress relief, the Stovall says that Civil Axe Throwing Montgomery will
object is to aim at different values on the target to soon begin its own corporate tournament league, in which
reach 21. The three ringed target has values of 1 local businesses can go head-to-head in accordance with
point, 3 points, and 5 points, with a small green dot the NATF’s tournament regulations. “It’s a really fun
at the top of the board called the “clutch,” worth 7
points and serving as a called shot, much like the 8
ball in pool.

If axe throwers go over 21 points, their score drops
back down to 13 and they must continue from there.
Stovall mentions other popular games include
HORSE and Around the World, in which throwers
must stick the target from left to right in order.

Civil Axe Throwing provides everything you need,
however Stovall says patrons are welcome to bring
their own axes as long as they aren’t double-sided.

team building exercise for businesses and a great way through Friday from 3 p.m. to 11 p.m., Saturday from
to network with other local professionals in a relaxed, noon to 11 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.
but competitive atmosphere,” he says. Besides, there’s Weekday pricing is $20 per hour, per person and weekend
no better way to blow off a little workplace frustration pricing is $22 per hour, per person.
and establish that you’re not to be taken lightly in the
boardroom, alright? Stovall explains, “Axe throwing is a great way to relieve
stress, build eye-hand coordination and have fun with
Civil Axe Throwing will have 16 locations by the end of the your friends in an unconventional way. Even beginners
year, including Birmingham, Huntsville, Tuscaloosa, and get pretty competitive and with a little practice, anyone
Orange Beach. The Montgomery spot is open Wednesday can be great at axe throwing.”

Think of Civil Axe Throwing as an updated and far experience, and regardless of your strength, this sport is
hipper version of the 1970s bowling alley. You may be far more about skill. It takes practice and concentration
wondering if the combination of alcohol and sharp axes but even if you’re not the best at it, you’ll still have fun,”
is a bad idea, but Stovall insists that with the proper Stovall says.
instruction and supervision, it is completely safe. While
in axe-throwing you compete against others, the real One thing is for sure, whether you’re a first timer or a
challenge is to up your own game and fine tune your skills veteran axe thrower, you’ll want to do it again and again.
with each throw. It’s the perfect activity as a group or For more information about Civil Axe Throwing
solo. Private parties and special events are welcome. Montgomery, to book a reservation, or to sign up for the
“You don’t need to walk in here with years of training or corporate league, call (334) 245-4540.

SEPT / OCT 2019 RSVP 41


Langley Tolbert

Artist Langley
Tolbert Creates

from Intuition

By: Kelly Baughman
Photos by Brooke Glassford, Colorbox

Langley Tolbert is as smart, complex
and multifaceted as her fine abstract
art. Having worn many hats in her
lifetime, the one that fits best is that of
painter, casually seated behind an easel
at her Lake Martin home.

Tolbert was taken with art and all
things creative at a young age. By six,
she was drawing things that lit up her

world, like horses and paper dolls. By “I started working in advertising and that she had been away from her first
high school, she expanded her artistic broadcast production [for] radio and love of painting for nearly 30 years.
talents with stage sets for plays, floats television. I suppose I didn’t know “As my children grew up and left
for the homecoming parade and title how special it was at the time, but the house, I found myself longing to
as editor of the yearbook. I was assistant producing the live get back into painting. I turned my
Bear Bryant Show every Sunday. garage into a makeshift studio. Then
From there, she attended The Everything we did was on the fly … several years later, I moved to Lake
University of Alabama and eventually it taught me a lot about production, Martin and started filling my time
graduated from The University of writing, public relations and adapting with art again,” she said.
North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a to any situation,” Tolbert said.
B.A. in English and a minor in Fine The time she took from her creative
Arts. She soon found herself far away After spending many years in PR, work was not a set back, but rather
from the fine art world as an award advertising and production, as well as like “riding a bike,” Tolbert says. “The
winning writer and producer. raising her children, Tolbert realized moment I sat down and put my brush

SEPT / OCT 2019 RSVP 43

And while Tolbert credits her success to her marketing
skills, her art is the real star. Her subjective abstracts
come from intuitive painting where Tolbert chooses a
color palette, simply puts the brush to canvas and lets
the paint tell her what to do.

to canvas, it just came flooding back, and I got into the “I don’t start with a defined subject in mind. I just start
zone,” she recalled. “It was like I had never stopped with random shapes, color, depth and shading. Many
painting at all.” times, I will turn the painting sideways or even upside
down as I’m working to change my perspective. Often
Tolbert soon began searching for gallery times I’ll see things that I didn’t before, and it will show
representation, which she quickly found within the me where to take the painting,” Tolbert said.
Montgomery area at Stonehenge Gallery, Gallery One Tolbert also uses materials like sheetrock mud, gel
and Gallery East. medium and all kinds of paper to create unique
textures in her acrylic based paintings. She often takes
“The skills I learned in my years in PR and advertising photos of her work in progress, as stepping away from
really served me well. You can be a really talented the painting or viewing it in a new light can help guide
artist, but without marketing yourself and your work, her next steps.
you may go completely unnoticed. It’s no exaggeration
for me to say that I spend half of my time creating art “People often ask me how I know when a painting
and the other half promoting it,” she said. is done, and the truth is I just feel it. Each one is
different, and it’s an instinctive feeling I get when it
44 RSVP SEPT / OCT 2019 reaches a certain point. It’s easy to overwork a painting
or miss something special by stopping too soon. I’ve
really had to learn to let the painting speak to me,” she

While her paintings are bold, colorful and popular with Thanks to the techniques she’s learned at the Alabama
collectors, Tolbert said she never stops growing. “I’ve Art Colony and the urging of her friends and neighbors,
learned so much from other artists over the years, and Tolbert has begun a new venture in her art repertoire
I think that keeps my style evolving. I like to challenge which she calls “fun art.” Her lively and quirky
myself, and learning new
techniques and incorporating them representations of life on the lake
into my work keeps me going and include subjects of fish, boats, flowers
keeps things fresh,” she said. and more, all tastefully done in her
Each year, Tolbert attends the signature style, with a twist.
Alabama Art Colony retreat at
the Children’s Harbor Camp on “Painting has always been my passion,
Lake Martin. This artist workshop and I’m lucky to be able to do what
allows fellow fine artists to come I love every day. I’m continuously
together for six days and five learning and evolving, and I hope that
nights to learn new techniques my work will continue to reflect that to
from teachers and renowned the people who share it with me,” said
artists from all over the world. Tolbert.

“It’s a fun way to push myself to For more information on Langley
step outside of [the] box in the art Tolbert or how to purchase her work,
world. I learn new ways to express visit or
myself through my art, while contact her directly at [email protected]
taking a little break from life. It’s a She is also on Facebook
gift I give myself each year, for me, and Instagram as Langley Tolbert Art.
from me,” she said.

46 RSVP SEPT / OCT 2019

By Kim Traff
Photos by Jackie+SELPuT /kOeCPTh2o01t9ogRSraVpP h4y7


After two summers spent working at Alabama Special Camp for Children
and Adults (ASCCA), Joseph Cochran knew his calling.Witnessing disabled
individuals get the opportunity to swim, glide on a zip line or go horseback
riding taught Joseph that he wanted to create these incredible, positive
experiences in the lives of others. A graduate from Montgomery Catholic
High School, Joseph went on to receive a bachelor’s and master’s degree
in Collaborative Special Education from The University of Alabama (UAB).
He then began working at Helena Elementary, teaching students with
autism and specific learning disabilities, and later received his master’s
in Instructional Leadership, allowing him to make a difference in a larger
capacity. After ten years at Helena, Joseph decided to move closer to his
hometown, where he now works as Assistant Principal at Prattville Primary
School. Every day Joseph and his team teach students to learn, love and lead
through the “Leader in Me” program. Interacting with students and seeing
them reach their goals is just one of the rewarding aspects of his career.
When it comes to giving credit for where he is today, there isn’t enough
room in this publication to describe the positive influence his parents, Rick
and Marty Huett, have had on his life, whether through constant support
or affording him endless opportunities. When Joseph gets a hall pass, you
may find him on the golf course or spending time near the water. He rarely
meets a stranger with his approachable, easy-going personality!

48 RSVP SEPT / OCT 2019

the LIST


There is no shortage of accolades when it comes to Flavia
Siqueira, head coach for women’s volleyball at Auburn University
at Montgomery. After receiving her bachelor’s degree from The
University of Mary, she went on to earn her master’s in College
Teaching. Since her career began in 2007, she’s coached at Lynn
University, Northwest College, WY, College of Central Florida
and Florida High Performance International Select Division.
Making it to six finals in six years, she was repeatedly named the
league’s Coach of the Year and has won five consecutive titles.
Flavia’s passion for her sport is evident on the court, but extends
to all aspects of her players’ lives as she challenges them to be
the best version of themselves. Several of her former players
went on to play professionally overseas. In a culture where female
coaches are sometimes underestimated, she worked hard to
earn the respect of other coaches. She credits several people
for having a positive influence in her career’s success, including
former coaches, her godmother, Vanessa Paterlini, who played
years of professional volleyball, and five-time Olympian, Daniele
Scott. Having volunteered with Special Olympics and Make a Wish
Foundation in the past, Flavia looks forward to becoming more
involved in our community. She will be inducted in the UMARY’s
Athletic Hall of Fame next month. When she isn’t on the court,
she enjoys spending time with her dogs or exploring downtown,
and her adventurous spirit often leads her to new vacation
spots… whether by plane, car, boat or motorcycle!


Growing up in a small rural community, Kimberly Sheffield
understands all too well the challenges people face when limited
resources are available. A motivational speaker and author
from Lowndes County, Kimberly lives to inspire and encourage
individuals and families during some of the most challenging times
in their lives, from homelessness to the loss of a child or loved one.
“God allows you to go through challenges to give you credibility
and the ability to help someone else out of a situation you were
once in” is the mantra Kimberly carries throughout her daily walk.
While she is completing studies to receive a degree in psychology
from Troy  University, she works as the Coordinated Assessment
Manager for a community and public service organization that
provides assistance to low-income individuals and families. While
spearheading community meetings to tackle societal challenges,
Kimberly is often reminded of her late grandmother,who instilled in
her at a very young age that all things are possible through God and
to always acknowledge him first.Through the wisdom she received
from her grandmother, Kimberly birthed New Faith Outreach for
Women, a support group where women find common ground and
inspiration by sharing their stories of triumph, devastating loss
and everything in between. Kimberly’s friends describe her as “the
person that will lift you up when there seems to be no way out.”
When she is not serving her community, motivating others or
working, she enjoys traveling and spending time with her beautiful
family, husband Patrick, their busy three-year-old Zaelan, her mom
and sisters.

SEPT / OCT 2019 RSVP 49

the LIST


Earning an Air Force ROTC commission from Tuskegee University in 2002,
CharlesWillams graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering
and later, a master’s in Management and Leadership from Liberty University.
He’s served a variety of engineering and acquisition officer assignments and
completed a deployment to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring
Freedom. He was flight commander and instructor for Officer Training
School and Assistant Director of Operations in the 22nd Training Support
Squadron, supporting over 2,600 Total Force officer trainees.After 10 years of
dedicated service to the Air Force, Charles worked several non-government
positions for the Veterans Administration. Currently a video teleconferencing
technician for the LeMay Center for Doctrine Education at Maxwell Air
Force Base, he’s also growing his photography business,, his
“true passion.” Charles has a desire to make positive contributions to society
as a way of “paying it back” to all the people who made sacrifices to get
him where he is now. Charles is the Board Vice President for Tie & Doll, a
non-profit organization whose mission is to mentor and empower youth to
lead and give, enrich themselves and be positive influences in the community.
He also raised over $2,000 for the American Cancer Society when he was
selected to serve on their “Real Men Wear Pink” campaign. Charles and his
wife, Diana Gray Williams, are excited about the potential they see in the
future of Montgomery. Charles created a cartoon character named Jukebox
(“it’sjukeboxy’all”), DJ at an online radio station that he broadcasts on social
media to provide much needed comic relief and encouragement.


Collaboration with visiting artists and curating exhibitions are just a
couple of career highlights for Madeline Burkhardt. She currently serves
as Coordinator of Adult Education for Troy University’s Rosa Parks
Museum.After receiving her bachelor’s degree in Art History and Italian
studies as an honor student, Madeline went on to earn her master’s in
Museum Studies at John Hopkins University. It was during an internship at
Montgomery Museum of Fine Arts that she met Alice Novak, Curator of
Education, who changed her perspective on museums and made her fall
in love with education and outreach work. Madeline’s youth presented
its challenges, especially in a room full of seasoned professionals, but
Novak helped her learn how to have a voice in every setting, regardless
of her position. Madeline loves creating a poignant show that brings
out unexpected emotions in its audience. She enjoys guiding all visitors,
but especially school children, through these shows because of their
insightful comments. Madeline’s community involvement includes
Junior League, MMFA Junior Executive Board, Triumph Services Junior
Board, Torchbearers Class X Alumna, and My Church Council. Recently,
she was invited to speak at the Museum Power conference at The
University of Leicester in England, where her speech was published in
their journal, Museological Review. Madeline was also awarded Auburn
University College of Liberal Arts’ 30 Under 30, and Delta Zeta’s 35
Under 35. Outside of her rewarding work day, Madeline loves an early
dinner at El Rey, attending a show at The Capri or Alabama Shakespeare
Festival and spending time with her French Bulldog, Snow, and rescue
kitten, Mo.

50 RSVP SEPT / OCT 2019

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