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Premier Issue Inside:

Color Theory

Greige is the Word pg. 6

Furniture Finds DOWNTOWN

Luxury Retreat

The KSD List

French Bistro “A La Carte”

Here for JULY|AUGUST 2018 $6.95

GOOD Patricia Robledo Bridges the Gap


The Creel Group is your full service real estate team specializing in luxury homes for sale in the Knoxville, Farragut, and Concord areas, and our goal is to provide you with superior service at all times. Our local expertise and extensive real estate experience is an asset to both buyers and sellers in the current market.


865.936.4116 l 865.694.5904 2 KNOXVILLE STYLE MAGAZINE

Everyone is beautiful, our job is simple, to enhance their beauty. We offer the most advanced, minimally invasive skin rejuvenation procedures, with a personal touch. We provide the latest skin care products, techniques and education to help maintain your beauty for years to come.

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Offering a wide range of injectables

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We offer a wide range of customized

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Novathreads, Restylane and Sculptra Aesthetic. Try our Liquid Face Lift which will make you look years younger and well rested.

stimulate collagen production. We give PRP injections for the scalp, face, neck, back of hands and

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8 6 5 - 6 7 5 - 2 8 8 8 | 1 1 6 7 3 Pa r k s i d e D r i v e , K n o x v i l l e , T N 3 7 9 3 4 | w w w. l o v e s n o o t y. c o m KNOXVILLE STYLE MAGAZINE 3







We’re excited to offer a removable insert of the brand new Knoxville Style Design Magazine produced by local experts Casey Fulton-Jordan and Amy Pacetti.


Publisher George Laurence Krieps

36 SPOTLIGHT Kiley Niles

Managing Editor Katie Rymer




28 HERE FOR GOOD Patricia Robledo





the actual definition—and is more associated with politics than people. Well, forget that! Our mission is to introduce a variety of ordinary women doing extraordinary things to inspire and inform the women of Knoxville and beyond. My hope is that this third issue will encourage and re-energize all to serve the deserving in their midst, no matter who or what that means. Whether lending a hand, providing food or shelter, or simply offering a smile to a stressed-out mom, a small act of love bridges the gap between our differences.

wanted this third campaign to reflect the diversity of Knoxville, though I wasn’t sure what that would look like or who would be a good representative on the cover. Until I met Patricia Robledo. You may have heard about her as a business owner, a breast cancer survivor, a Girl Scout Troop leader, an interpreter with Doctors Without Borders, or a mother of two. I was surprised she even had time to meet with me, but one thing about her is she makes time for people. Minutes into our conversation, I was wiping tears from my eyes and knew we had our cover feature. These days, the word diversity signifies a divide rather than a variety—

Fashion Director Susan Bourdeau Fashion Intern Sarah Avery Elder Editorial Intern Chelsea Babin Videographer Monica Hoss Media Sales Associates Allison Hogin Cruze Lori Santoro Crystal Smith Contributors Susan Bourdeau Beauty for the Ages Carrie McConkey Ask Carrie M. Betsy Johnson Fit & Fun Courtney Cunningham New View Nicole Montgomery Entree Toi et Moi Kristie Carson Treasures & Trinkets Raye-Anne Ayo, MD Women’s Health Margaret Troxell, MD Women’s Health Ashlea Bushman Ownbey Book Nook Jeanine Fuller Found Sound Casey Fox Libacious Cocktail Catering Rachel Wilhelm Feeding Unity Patricia Robledo Here for Good Carlton Long A Heart to Serve Johnna Bullard Fostering Love Deni Kidd For Refugees Sarah Helms 100 Women Who Care Emily Norris Belonging Nicole Siegel Inclusion Laura Pierpont Still Waters Rhoni Basden Girls Inc Stephanie Howard High Hopes Jayne Morgan Theatre Scene Rebecca Dotson 818 Ministries Kiley Niles Spotlight Contributing Photographers Casey Perfetto, Perfetto Photographs Andrea Hagood, Andrea Madeleine Photography COVER PHOTOGRAPH BY CASEY PERFETTO MAKEUP AND STYLING BY SUSAN BOURDEAU CLOTHING BY

Love, Katie Rymer Managing Editor

For advertising call 865.936.3013 |


Design Director Deb Hardison


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BEAUTY FOR THE AGES S U M M E R Try a contour color under your chin, a few shades darker than your skin, to diminish the appearance of your chin


This is one of the prettiest makeup looks for summer and also the simplest. You only need a few products to make this look work. First, apply a matte crème colored shadow over the entire eye lid, then sweep on a sheer green shadow over the eyelid. Use the same green shadow on your lower lash line, and apply a green liner to the top lid. For darker skin tones, use the same technique but go for a more vivid, highly pigmented green. Apply a shimmery highlight or bronzing powder to your cheeks and finish with a neutral matte lipstick.


A face mist a day keeps the dryness away so spritz away through out the day for a refreshing skin boost and physical pick-me-up! There are so many different kinds of mists and toners out there that I keep a selection handy at all times. The best ones out there not only keep your makeup looking fresh, but they are also filled with active ingredients like hydrosols, hyaluronic acid, and rosemary and cucumber. To keep your skin hydrated and glowing, try a rosemary and cucumber balancing mist for a soothing facial treat. Or use a glycolic acid toner to take your skin from “blah” to “yeah!”


Sticky, gooey glosses don’t have a chance in the heat. Instead opt for a long lasting lipstick with a crème finish.


Even if you have a very dark complexion, you don’t have to stick to dark makeup colors. Instead, experiment with various shades, even colors you thought weren’t right for you.



This summer’s hottest makeup trend most certainly shows influences from the early 80s. A little bit punk, a lot romantic, and perfect for every skin tone, try pairing a shade or two of these so-called sunset hues, like vibrant, warm reds, oranges and pinks, on the lower lid and crease of your eye. The result is a look that’s incredibly wearable. Try a vibrant red or pink lip color for a stunning pout, or go with a neutral for a timeless look—just like the sunset’s beauty!

Get your faux glow on with two of the most overlooked items in the beauty toolbox. Bronzers are the safe way to deepen your complexion, giving you a tan without the risk of sun exposure. Shimmer powders are perfect for highlighting the parts of your face you want to stand out, like high cheek bones, the bridge of your nose, and your temples. To up the glow factor, you can also add shimmer powders and bronzers on top of your shadows, blush or lips. Remember, darker bronzing colors add depth to your face, Spend an afternoon while lighter shimmer powders highlight the with a professional and areas of your face you want to feature. let that expert apply various colors on your face to see which ones you like.


Summer is no time for heavy foundations and powders. The heat and humidity wreak havoc on any matte look. Give your skin a break and instead try a Tinted Moisturizer with an SPF. These crèmes do triple duty by providing pigmented coverage that withstands the hot weather, and are available in multiple shades for all skin tones. They not only hydrate and protect your skin, but also give you a fresh summery look, while providing protection from those harsh rays.



& 1 2 D O ’s s T’ DON’

Add a makeup primer to your routine to help keep your makeup in place during these long hot summer days!

Go bold! One of the great things about having a deeper complexion is being able to wear bold shades that can overpower women with fair skin. This includes gold, bronze, orange, fuchsia and silver makeup.



Choose the one facial feature you want to draw attention to and focus on that, leaving the rest of your face neutral. Focus on your best features. What do you love best about your face? Whatever part it is, accentuate it. If you love your eyes, wear an attention-getting eye shadow and two to three coats of mascara. Or use a heavy eye liner for dramatic effect.

Some women have a preference for lining their pretty lips in black or a nearly black lip liner and then applying red or another bright shade of lipstick. This is not an attractive look. Lip liner should match your lipstick color as closely as possible. Lip liner is not there to draw attention to itself. Your lip liner’s job is to contain your lipstick so that it doesn’t feather and bleed.


Exfoliate for clearer, smoother skin Exfoliation removes dead, dull skin to prevent clogging and congestion, and improves the skin’s ability to accept hydration with the use of toners and moisturizers. Use a facial exfoliator twice a week, when you wash your face, prior to the application of toner, moisturizer, sunscreen and makeup. This will also help your makeup last longer. Apply a body exfoliator three to four If your lips are times a week, your best feature, especially wear a bright before using shade of lipstick! any artificial tanning products, for soft, smooth, even skin. Apply to dry skin before you shower, paying special attention to knees and elbows. After you exfoliate, use a hydrating body crème or oil, and always follow with a sunscreen that contains a 30 SPF UVA and UVB or higher. Use something with a shimmer for sexy summer skin without the risks!

And never exfoliate right before sun exposure! This can increase your risk of burning. When in doubt, apply (and reapply!) Applying sunscreen once is not enough! To avoid a burn you must apply enough sunscreen, and reapply often! Most people don’t apply nearly enough. A good rule of thumb is a teaspoon of sunscreen for your face, and about a shot glass full for your body. Reapply every two hours. And when possible, stay out of the

midday sun! And don’t forget to apply sunscreen to those neglected areas like the ears, temples and back of the neck. Keep your body hydrated Higher temperatures and more time outdoors leads to internal dehydration,

which can result in headaches and dizzy spells! What you can do: Drinking eight 8 oz. glasses of plain, filtered water every day helps maintain critical moisture balance of the body and skin, and assist in detoxification. If you don’t like the taste of plain water, add lemon or lime juice! This not only keeps you hydrated but gives you a healthy boost of Vitamin C. Keep your skin hydrated Increase your skin’s level of hydration with intensive facial masques,

perfect for use one to two times a week. Hydrating serums are a great addition as well. Use serums that contain Hyaluronic Acid. This powerful humectant keeps skin plump, hydrated and fresh looking.

Susan Bourdeau is a nationally recognized makeup artist and wardrobe stylist with 20 years’ experience in television, film and print, and recently developed her own line of cosmetic and skincare products.

Knoxville Comprehensive Breast Center is celebrating 35 years of service to the women of EAST TENNESSEE

First in-office needle biopsy, so women didn’t have to go to the hospital or operating room

1985 1983 Opened the first breast center in Knoxville, which was woman owned, independent, and the only one within 700 miles

First multidisciplinary conference, which brought all the physicians involved in treating breast cancer together to customize and personalize every patient’s treatment

1997 1988 First mobile mammography program in East Tennessee. KCBC’s mobile drives to surrounding areas for women who don’t have access to quality breast imaging

First Hologic digital mammography, which allows for more clarity when reading mammograms


2002 First dedicated breast MRI, designed exclusively for diagnosing breast cancer and women’s comfort

Freezing small breast cancers in the office instead of the operating room which lessens recovery time and surgical scars


2018 The first to offer “no compression” breast imaging, it’s 3D mammography but better

Whether it’s your first time or your 35th time, You’ll always get answers to your breast questions 1400 Dowell Springs Blvd, Suite 200 | Knoxville, TN 37909 (865) 584-0291 | (800) 456-8169

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ask CARRIE M. Age and size are only numbers. It’s the attitude you bring to clothes that make the difference.

A dressmaker in a former life, Knoxville Fashion Consultant Carrie McConkey is a “clothes whisperer” for her clients, taking great pleasure in helping them unlock their signature style.

-Donna Karan

Every summer I end up with one beloved “Cartoon Character” dress that I wear ALL THE TIME. Any tips on using it to build a wardrobe with other outfits I want to reach for? Your “Cartoon Character” dress sounds like it represents your signature style! A perfect piece on which to build capsule wardrobe. Choose a coordinating scarf (patterned if the dress is solid, and vice versa). Pull out 3 - 5 colors to serve as a guide in selecting a cardigan and blazer for casual and dressy options. Add a pair of flat and heeled shoes to your capsule for further versatility. Finally, seek out accessories such as a belt (if applicable), and at least two sets of jewelry options. Then have as much fun as Minnie Mouse! What should I look for in well-made clothes? Well-made garments are constructed of quality materials that stand the test of time, and they hang better on the body. When shopping, examine the finer details. Make sure buttons feel substantial and are securely fastened. Avoid fabrics that are thin, flimsy, or wrinkle-prone. (Try the wrinkle test: squeeze a handful of the fabric, and let go. Can you brush the wrinkles out, or is it a world of hurt?) Check for a smooth and well-constructed lining if the garment needs it (for example, if it’s white!). Slide the zipper up and down to ensure it glides. Keep in mind that you will most often get what you pay for. Be proud to invest in quality clothing - you are worth it! What type of pant is good for a bottom heavy person? Any and all body types should aim for one thing: visually creating a proportioned, hourglass shape. For those of us whose hourglass is heavier on the bottom, wide leg trousers are the perfect pick to produce a graceful, elongating leg line. Stick with solid, dark neutral colors, and beware of prominent pockets or pleats. High and mid-rise waistlines flatter more than low, and a pressed crease down


the front and back trouser leg is another visual perk. Regarding jeans, straight leg with some stretch will flatter more than boot-cut. Avoid decorative details including distressed marks or holes (which are perplexing to me anyway). Think long and lean, and if you can add a bit of a wedge or heeled shoe, all the better! All the craze right now is “Stitch Fix.” Thoughts? Several of my clients like Stitch Fix but still seek my opinion on the color, fit, and usability with their existing pieces. Recently I had the chance to get to know a Stitch Fix stylist and learn more about the company. The pros: plentiful size options including 0–24W, maternity, and petites; shoes and accessories can be requested; and the stylists are indeed stylists by trade with years of experience. The cons: limited clothing brands are available; a $20 styling fee applies even if none of the items work; and a 25% discount applies only when all pieces are purchased. Tips: Give plentiful and descriptive feedback to your stylist, and join Facebook groups where Stitch Fix clothes can be bought and sold. How do you avoid buyer’s remorse? An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure! Don’t fall prone to “speed shopping” that can cause a rushed decision. Relaxed shopping equals smart shopping, so give yourself ample time when you are pressed to find an item for a special occasion. Resist well-meaning (or not so well-meaning) salespeople who try to talk you into something you didn’t need in the first place. Measure your gut reaction: do you feel beautiful/sexy/powerful in it? Calculate the cost per wear by dividing the item’s price by the number of times you’ll wear it. Ask yourself, “Can I quickly and easily think of 3 outfits that would look great with this piece?” And my number one foolproof tip: sleep on it! s Do you have questions for Carrie? Email her at

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ANXIETY “Since my infusions at Revitalist, I have honestly been free from panic attacks, which I was suffering from daily. I am truly amazed by the results.”

BRINGING NEW HOPE TO KNOXVILLE We are excited to bring the benefits of low dose ketamine infusion therapy to Knoxville and its surrounding communities. Many resistant or difficult to treat conditions are responding to ketamine therapy with more than a 70% success rate.

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Fit to Serve W

Betsy is involved with Child Aid Africa, providing much needed educational programs.

Betsy Johnson runs all over Knoxville, either training for her next event or taking her two sons to their practice or game.

e live in an incredibly blessed nation and we take even the simple things for granted such as transportation, feeding our children, living in a home, having electricity, running water and going to school. As I have grown up, I have always known that it is better to have the opportunity to experience something first hand versus just giving money and checking it off of my to-do list. It had been heavy on my heart for our family to go to another country and for our children to experience another culture from their own eyes. In June of 2013, we had the opportunity to go on a mission trip for 17 days to Kenya with an organization called “Child Aid Africa.” It was a big trip and we were nervous about taking our boys that were five and eight at the time We prayed about it and knew that they were ready. In America, our government provides an opportunity for an education. In Kenya, however, after a child finishes 8th grade, the government will not continue to fund their education. Our mission was to visit schools and find children that possessed good grades, but lacked the resources to continue in their education. Most of these kids were orphans or came from abusive households. We would then try to find a sponsor for these kids through the next four years. Without these sponsors, many of the kids would live on the street and become homeless. The magical thing about children is that they will play with each other no matter the ethnicity, financial background or any pre conceived judgment. Having our kids in Africa with us was one of the most amazing experiences. They were able to be servants to others. We all had the experience to help identify and interview middle school children that were working hard and trying to obtain scholarships to further their education. As a family, we knew that we wanted to find a

Betsy brings her boys to Africa

student to sponsor. After a boy walked in to the principal’s office to be interviewed, we all knew that that is who we wanted to sponsor to further his education from 9th-12th grade. We then were able to go to his village and our boys saw first- hand how he lived and what his living conditions were like. It was an eye opening experience and one that we will all remember forever. So, how does Knoxville come back into this story? Well, when we came back home and shared our story with others, many people were wanting to learn more about this organization and expressed an interest in sponsoring a child. So, in November of 2013, a small committee helped me put together a fundraiser for this organization and Knoxville was just amazing. We had underwriters for the entire event so every penny raised went to “Child Aid Africa.” In the end, we ended up raising over $50,000 that night and over 40 kids were sponsored. The people in Knoxville are amazing and sometimes it takes us to get out of our comfort zone a bit to experience magical and incredible things first hand and how truly amazing so many people are. Life is busy and we can so often put things on the back burner. Listen to that voice in your head that tells you to do something that may be out of your comfort zone. Experiencing things first hand really makes my boys remember how blessed we are. At the end of the day, my husband and I often ask ourselves if we are making a difference. As we have gotten older, some of the things that we thought were important are just frivolous. Spend time in your day doing something that can help someone or to make a difference in someone’s life. I run a nutrition business and love helping others achieve their goals of weight loss. You never know when a hobby can become a full-time job. Service is what we are all called to do one way or another.s






his issue has shown many ways we are different, but we’re similar in that as long as we live, we all experience aging (some with fear and trembling). Read on to learn about how a vitamin derivative called NAD+ can literally transform your life. You were born with NAD+, and everyone could benefit from more of it! [From the Editor.] NAD+ is the most powerful and important antioxidant in the body for increasing energy in brain cells and heart cells; stimulating production of dopamine, serotonin, and noradrenaline; protection against many chronic diseases; lowering cholesterol and blood pressure; and strengthening the immune system. So, you can see how vital it is to keep the level of NAD+ elevated in our bodies. Five ways to naturally increase your NAD+ include: Regular Exercise, Ketogenic Diet, Saunas, Fermented Foods with Lactobacilliand fasting for 16-hours, followed by 8 hours of eating. Despite trying the natural ways to increase your NAD+, one cannot outpace the aging process. At birth, you have 100% NAD+ in your cells. At twenty years of age, NAD+ in the cells drops to 50%. At sixty, the levels drop to 12.5%. As a consequence, the function of your cells decreases. If one can increase the mitochondria energy, we can prevent the negative effects of aging. Low NAD+ is associated with fatigue and decreased mental energy, so by giving NAD+ intravenously (IV) we can boost energy levels and also enhance memory. The number of treatments depends

Dr. Raye-Anne Ayo, MD, FAAFP, is a mother of 3 boys and a family practice physician for nearly 20 years.


on which condition is being treated. Medical research has shown that NAD+ therapy improves the following conditions: chronic fatigue-depression-anxiety-alcoholism, drug addiction, and early Parkinson’s disease. As you can see, NAD+ treatments are extremely valuable in so many ways. As the only fellowship-trained and board-certified in Antiaging Medicine physician in eastern Tennessee, I am delighted that I am able to offer this valuable treatment! s

Dr. Margaret R. Troxell founded her Anti-Aging Centre in Knoxville after owning a family practice clinic for 18 years and committing to a proactive approach to fight disease.



s July is upon us now, and school is officially out, summertime fun can start! Don’t forget to apply that sunscreen! As a mom, that just poses a new problem. Which sunscreen? There are 50,000 in the stores and which should I choose? For me? For the kids? And what about the many moles I’ve been given over the years with my genetics? When does one look weird enough to go get it checked out? Let’s go through the weird mole issue first. There’s a simple little rule set we use to determine if we need to see a doctor: Asymmetric—can you cut the mole in half and it’s the same? If not, then it’s suspicious. Borders—are they defined? Can you make a nice line on around it? Color—is it one color? If there is red, blue, black, white—it needs to be checked.

Diameter—is it getting larger? If so, then it needs to be checked. Elevation—is it getting thicker? If something was flat, and now you can feel it, it needs to be checked. So these are the clues to melanoma. We should all be aware and take a look at our skin (and our family’s skin) to be sure everything is copacetic. Please, PLEASE, see your family physician or dermatologist if you are concerned (or have a predisposition to skin cancer). Now, let’s tackle the sunscreen dilemma of which one of the 50,000,000 to choose (yes, they seem to grow in number as I look at the shelves at the store). You should look for several things actually and it pares down the number exponentially.

A. Lotions NOT sprays, sprays can be spotty coverage and leave you unprotected. B. Consider whether the ingredients have any hormonal effects if they are absorbed or ingested (such as oxybenzone or octinoxate). C. Consider if the ingredients will cause allergic reactions (such as methylisothiazolinone). D. Make sure it covers UVA and UVB (broad-spectrum). E. At LEAST 30 SPF— and reapply. The higher the SPF, DOESN’T mean to apply less frequently, and the bang for your buck or protection doesn’t go up that drastically with the higher SPF. (Nothing covers 100%). F. Make sure it is waterproof. A couple of helpful websites to look at are and Have a fun and safe summer!










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“It is time for the pendulum to slow, to find its center.”


Courtney Cunningham is the wearer of many hats and co-owner of Alchemy Salon.

stand at a door. My hand is on the handle, and I know this is the right way. Or is it? Through here there is change. Through here my life begins again. All I have to do is open the door and push through. Or do I wait for the next door? I hesitate, just for a moment, and the handle is gone. The door becomes a wall and I amforced deeper into the maze. My hesitation becomes my limitation and I am captive to myself again. Within my hesitation lies my inability to trust myself and make the difficult choices, and within my hesitation also lies my ability to see and speak truth. I am both sides of this coin, two ends of the spectrum, coexisting but disharmonious. It has been so for as long as I can remember. From a very early age, I did not understand how to be or fit into the world. I knew what was expected of meand I learned how to camouflage myself accordingly. I learned the right things to say and I stuck to the script. But Iwas trapped and lost in plain sight. I was fooling others, but not myself. The hidden part of me needed air. I needed the pendulum to swing far, far in the other direction. I did not yet have the tools to allow both sides of me to exist atonce or the ability to harness them and fuse them together.

So I set fire to my life. It was messy and it was dangerous. It was not a controlled fire. It caused pain to those around me and nearly destroyed me in the process. It broke parts of me and opened parts of me. It taught me that I can be fierce, that I can break myself out of my shell and I can blaze a new path. Still, I wasn’t whole. Both extremes held a key and a trap. I am a culmination of many parts. A rebel and a pleaser, a fire and an extinguisher. I am all of these things and more. I am collecting the broken pieces, the extremes and the in-betweens. My task is to examine them with an open heart, a heart that has room for all sides of me, and then fuse them together. It is time for the pendulum to slow, to find its center. This is a time to sift, sort, assess. I see that the regret, the burning, the hiding and the emerging are all part of my journey. I have not been meant to see my path from above, because it is in the not seeing clearly that I uncover my strength, my voice and my ability to forge my own way. I believe it is so for all of us. It is in the choices, the obstacles, and the walls that we find our doors, our own paths. It is in the unknown that we begin assembling who we are truly meant to be. s


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f you think pearls are too traditional, think again! Pearls are universally flattering and add an instant up light around your face. Pearls really cater to all personalities whether you are classic, modern, trendy or eclectic, pearls will rock any outfit. From traditional to eclectic, pearls are perfect for any personality! Don’t be afraid to take your oh-so-traditional strand and mix it up, rethink the way you wear your pearls. So, don’t let your pearls sit in a drawer waiting for a formal occasion. Find your perfect pearls and wear them with style! s

“Pearls are just fabulous no matter how you string em!”

With a home shopping industry career spanning more than 20 years, Kristie is currently a JTV trend reporter. She adores her family, french fries, and loves doing laundry.




Wear it with Style* M

ost women constantly serve others—our community, friends, and family—which is great! However, we can easily feel guilty or forget to have a little “me” time. We need to rejuvenate and recharge those batteries that enable us to keep helping and serving others well. So, why not treat yourself to a little trend and style session? Join me at the World’s Fair Park for a Wear it With Style session in the heart of our city! Steps to Style: Your best face forward—pamper yourself by allowing a professional makeup artist, like Patty Watson, use her skill to reveal your natural beauty (and cover up some of that summer sun damage)! Get your groove on—hire a wardrobe stylist (Jessica Cavalaris is so much fun!) or trust your BFF to guide you and confidently rock that perfect outfit! Light it up—Tad Howard makes sure to put me in just the right light, but when a crew isn’t behind the scenes with you, shine your own light! The icing on top—Jewelry is a statement of your personality and completes the look. Why go bland when you can go bling?! These steps will get your started. To go further, meet with a style and trend expert who can help coordinate amazing looks specifically for you. You deserve to treat yourself to some “me” time and then go out and serve in style! s

*Wear It With Style is a trend and fashion segment focusing on styling out jewelry and accessories. Catch it on JTV and on my Facebook page JTVKristieCarson.


Diet | Exercise | SculpSure Put in the work and let SculpSure do the rest.

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Raye-Anne Ayo MD, FAAFP Mom of 3 boys, University of Tennessee graduate, 2004

Call to schedule a complimentary consultation so we may plan the most personalized care for you. 865.675.4342 11217 West Point Drive Suite 2 Knoxville Tn 37934

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For the benefit of

2nd annual Burger Bash Saturday, August 11th


at World’s Fair Park Knoxville, Tennessee

Find out more and purchase tickets at

Join us for burgers • beverages • live music • kids activities • family fun Tickets $10 for adults • $5 for children • Gates open at 11 a.m.


Here for



Patricia Robledo tells her story of coming to Knoxville to stay for good.

could never have imagined the young 17-year-old immigrant with limited English proficiency, who arrived in Knoxville, would one day receive the most prestigious invitation of my career. I know it was the result of all my volunteer work in the community that first caught the attention of our first female mayor, Madeline Rogero. But let me start at the beginning. I flew from the Andes Mountains of Colombia to the Smoky Mountains of Tennessee on (con’t.)


C A S E Y P E R F E T TO Dress: Janice Ann’s Fashions West - Bearden Hill Makeup: Susan Bourdeau



“Everybody can be great...because anybody can serve. You don’t have to have a college degree to serve. You don’t have to make your subject and verb agree to serve. You only need a heart full of grace. A soul generated by love.” —Martin Luther King

Wardrobe: Janice Ann’s Fashions West Makeup: Susan Bourdeau

December 28, 1980. From the day I emigrated to today, it has been quite a journey. I could not have predicted some of the challenges and the many opportunities that would present themselves over the years. Growing up in the richly biodiverse coffee growing region of Colombia was simply magical. I was surrounded by a loving family and grew up in a home where helping others was a daily occurrence and where the lessons on social justice and social responsibility were a matter of routine and by example. Nowadays many wonder if the American dream is a myth, and if it is not, is it dying? There’s no question that the dream is more challenging to achieve today. I believe I am a testament that it is still possible, but it cannot be done alone. Aside from the kindness extended to me by many people along the way, there is a recurring theme that has been the key to all the wonderful opportunities in my life: volunteering. Funny I should end up in Volunteer country! Let me share a few examples of how volunteering in community service has significantly impacted my life. My first volunteering opportunity happened shortly after I arrived in Knoxville in 1981. The city was host30 KNOXVILLE STYLE MAGAZINE

ing the World’s Fair, and I volunteered as a member of the language bank, a group of interpreters of various languages who were available for interpretation services. I also volunteered as a photographer and issued season passes, which led to a job as a VIP hostess, providing tours to visiting dignitaries, celebrities and visitors. This experience was life changing. The world came to Knoxville and it was an enriching experience to be exposed to so many different cultures and people. After the World’s Fair, I attended the University of Tennessee. I left Knoxville in 1985 but returned ten years later. Once back, I decided to volunteer for Bridge Refugee Services. I wanted to help those arriving from foreign lands because I personally knew how difficult the transition can be. New arrivals have many questions about basic routines that are often completely foreign to them: How does the post office work? The supermarkets? The banks? The libraries? The schools? Before completing my volunteer training, I was recruited to work as an interpreter to explain benefits and severance packages to employees of a garment manufacturer that was shutting down. With that experience, my entrepreneurial spirit was awakened. I realized there was a local need for interpretation and translation services, so I started a small business. As a result of that volunteer opportunity, Robledo Translations, LLC has had the privilege of serving many clients in both public and private sectors for the past 20 years. Knoxville has a strong nonprofit community. I have been honored to serve many organizations doing amazing work in our community. I have been greatly enriched by my involvement with organizations that are focused on the arts and culture, education, domestic violence, empowerment of girls, health, and business startups. It was very meaningful be a founding member of the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, where I was later asked to lead the organization as its executive director. However, not long after I had accepted the challenge, I received a call I will never forget. It was from Knoxville’s newly elected mayor, inviting me to join her administration as the Business Liaison in the newly created Office of Business Support. Currently, two of my favorite volunteer activities are serving as a Girl Scout leader and as an interpret-


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A view of the French “tuscan” countryside Dress: Janice Ann’s Fashions West from the orangerie (yet Makeup: Susan Bourdeau to be renovated). 32 KNOXVILLE STYLE MAGAZINE

er for Knoxville Medical Mission. The Lonsdale Girl Scout troop is ethnically diverse — a veritable rainbow coalition —most of Guatemalan descent. Some of the girls are trilingual, as they speak English, Spanish, and Acateco, a Mayan language. These Girls have acquired amazing skills as they take on leadership roles as cultural liaisons, interpreters, and translators for their families. I share with my Girls that it is important to foster those language skills and share examples of the many opportunities being bilingual has served me well. I consistently look for opportunities to counter the messages so often heard by immigrants—messages that attempt to instill shame for being proud of who we are, of our culture, and of our language. I have traveled to Guatemala with Knoxville Medical Mission for 15 consecutive years. Guatemala has become like a third home to me. This annual weeklong mission is like a vitamin for the soul. I serve as an interpreter, again bridging language and cultural gaps. I return to Knoxville renewed and grateful each year for the work these orthopedic surgeons perform and for the many lessons the patients and their families teach us about gratitude, perseverance, trust, and bravery. Of the many blessings I have received, I am most thankful to be the mother of two incredible beings, who have inherited the social justice genes passed on by my parents. My daughter, Marisa, has a Masters degree in Urban Education and lives in California. She works preparing high school students, most of whom are immigrants or children of immigrants, for postsecondary education. Marisa also happens to be a Salsa dancing world champion! My son, Daniel, has been working as a Litigation Coordinator for a law firm in Nashville for the last three years, which focuses on civil and workers’ rights. He is headed to Wisconsin this fall to pursue a Masters/Doctoral program in Sociology. Although I spoke some English when I arrived to this country, I soon learned that it takes time and exposure to become proficient, bilingual, and truly immersed in a different culture. One of the very first questions someone asked me, was whether I was here for good. My reaction felt like a kick to the stomach as I thought, “Of course I am here for good!” Why would anyone think I was here for bad? I laugh out loud about that question now. I am glad to be here for good—figuratively and literally. I feel fortunate to have adopted this community, and that it has adopted me! I have been given many incredible opportunities to serve as a bridge between peoples and communities to help close cultural and communication gaps. Volunteering has changed my life. The great thing about it is that anyone can do it, even a recently arrived immigrant. One of my favorite quotes is by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.: “Everybody can be great... because anybody can serve. You don’t have to have a college degree to serve. You don’t have to make your subject and verb agree to serve. You only need a heart full of grace. A soul generated by love.” s

A LIFETIME OF SERVICE “I have been greatly enriched by my involvement with organizations that are focused on the arts and culture, education, domestic violence, empowerment of girls, health, and business startups.” —Patricia Robledo






Emily with her son, husband, brother and parents.

“The real difficulty is to overcome how you think about yourself ” -Maya Angelou



’ve always been able to find a reason for why I don’t belong—too loud, too shy, not smart enough, not pretty enough, too tall, too short, not talented enough, not hard-working enough—just not enough, and at the same time, too much. It makes it easy to create walls and barriers around my emotions that keep everyone out, but they’ve also kept me trapped inside. Dance, art, yoga, cultivating relationships, and creating a sense of belonging have begun to bring me healing as depression, anxiety, and an eating disorder have been very isolating experiences over the course of my life. Being vulnerable, letting people see the “real me,” and being accepted for that, has brought a profound confidence

and knowledge of who I am and has been crucial for my recovery. Loneliness and a lack of belonging are two things I feel most, if not all, people have experienced at some point in their lives, and the desire to fit in, be accepted, and belong is so strong in all of us. It’s what makes us feel safe to go out and take risks, chase our dreams, and live courageously. Growing up, I battled with trying to figure out how I fit in within my family. I’m sure many have experienced that disquieting feeling of “different-ness,” but for me, and us, it was extremely apparent that I stuck out. My mom, dad, and brother all have a type of dwarfism called achondroplasia, but through an example of basic Punnett square genetics, I received both recessive genes from my parents and turned out average-sized. I struggled with our family being stared at, and frequently resented that people couldn’t just leave us alone. Often it was children that would point fingers, make loud remarks, and maybe even be fearful of a family that appeared so different from theirs. My mom was always wonderful about welcoming kids over to talk about us, reassuring the parents that it was ok, and answering questions so that they could understand we weren’t really that different. It didn’t change my feelings then, but as an adult, and now a mom myself, I get it. When you can teach a child not to fear someone that is different from them, they just might continue the chain of acceptance and love rather than hatred and discrimination. My family and my story have taught me that the cliché “never judge a book by its cover” is so true. To see me by myself, one would never know the unique life I have experienced, but really, we all have our own stories, challenges, and differences in some way—mine are just a bit more visually obvious! Because she’s my favorite, I’ll leave you with one more quote from the timeless Maya Angelou: “It is time for parents to teach young people early on that in diversity there is beauty and there is strength.” s




nclusion. This word means so much to me as a “special mom” of two on the Autism Spectrum. Even before I became a parent, I advocated for my elementary school students when I was a teacher, and have continued the charge for my children and their friends throughout the years. It’s hard to believe they’re in high school now, and while many aspects of understanding different needs have improved, we still have a ways to go as a community. Inclusion. When I hear that word, my mind goes to the classroom and the desire that I (as well as other special parents) have for our children to be educated alongside their typical peers. To be a part of their classrooms, rather than being visitors throughout the day. But, it is so much more than that. Inclusion isn’t a law that people need to follow… it is a belief. I can tell you that every parent I have met through the years wants their children to grow up to be successful. Successful in academics, in friendships, in love… in life. If you think about it, no one really is against inclusion. What concerns people is that somehow a special needs child/individual will affect or deter the learning of their own child. They will take away from their child’s sporting event experience. Make them feel uncomfortable because they aren’t sure on how to accommodate an individual’s needs. Inclusion shouldn’t be a favor that we do for those with disabilities. Inclusion is a belief that all individuals, regardless of a label, are members of the community. That they matter. That they are valued. Inclusion is a gift that we give ourselves and our children. A gift of understanding others’ needs. A gift of thinking outward than inward. “We” versus “Me.” Inclusion means having a coach go out of their way to include individuals of all abilities. I don’t mean as the “ball boy/girl,” but by introducing skills that children can perfect alongside their peers. A great example of this is our swim team. Instead of swimming a typical 50 meter race, the coach has her swim a 25. Peers often volun-


teer their time during practice to help perfect her skills. The coaches don’t change the fundamentals of the sport, instead they think outside of the box for my children and others with similar needs to be athletes amongst their teammates. Inclusion means that parents teach their children to look for similarities versus differences in others. It means taking that extra step by asking special parents how best to accommodate their child’s needs (ex: sensory issues, favorite foods, etc.), so that even if the child can only tolerate five minutes of attendance at a special event, they have the chance to experience something others take for granted. Inclusion means supporting businesses and organizations in the community that see past labels and create jobs and other opportunities for individuals of all abilities. It means volunteering your time or being a mentor to someone who needs encouragement and guidance. Inclusion means looking around and noticing those

who are sitting alone and befriending them. Speaking up for those who are unable to advocate for themselves, for whatever reason. Seeing the worth of others. Inclusion. If you stop for a second and analyze the word, what it truly means is include—what everyone wants for themselves and their children—to be included in life. While we have come a long way, we still have so far to go. I challenge you all as mothers… aunts… friends… women… to be a voice. Look around and see what you can do to make a difference.

Above, Nicole’s daughter was crowned “Miss Inspirational” in the Miss Shining Star pageant. Her children share a strong bond and support each other in all they do.




Kiley Niles

How did you make your way to Knoxville? Growing up in the small town of Grand Blanc, Michigan, I had aspirations of being a journalist. After graduating early from high school and attending Western Michigan University for a year and a half, I transferred into one of the country’s most prestigious journalism programs in the United States at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. I received a degree in Bachelor of Arts in Journalism and Mass Communication. Then, 18 years ago, I arrived in this college town of Knoxville to work for WVLT, Local 8 News. What are you doing now? After 12 years and three different positions at Knoxville’s CBS affiliate (Producer, Reporter, and Assistant Promotion Director), I started my own business called Niles Production. I anchored radio headlines for WNOX, co-hosted a start-up web cast called Smoky Mountain Morning, was a medical reporter for the Dr. Bob Show and a spokesmodel with Sea Ray (Brunswick Boats) at their international trade shows, played the recurring role of Kathy Kenda on Homicide Hunter on Investigation Discovery. Currently, I am in my 6th year as a model for Jewelry Television, and the Director of Marketing for Turkey Creek.


iley Niles is a former news reporter and producer, model, marketing and media business owner, and mother of four. We asked her a few questions to help us get to know her a little better. Do you have a favorite inspirational quote or mantra? Encouraging words keep me focused, with my head up, and with a smile in my heart. Many years ago, I overheard my twin sister share these three simple words with her boys, “Attitude of gratitude.” My children hear me speak these words probably more often than they would care to, but for me, it’s those meaningful reminders that help to get my perspective back in check. Have you ever heard this? Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react to it. We are responsible for our own reactions. Just like we can choose to be happy! Don’t give someone else or a situation the control to take you off your path of positivity! Once you really soak up that saying, you become so much more accountable for your actions. You also become aware of just how much power you have within yourself to shape your own destiny.


Where are you going from here? I have my dream career in television, media and marketing that allows me the freedom and flexibility to be there for my children ages 4 to 14. I took courageous steps to get where I am today. From moving 600 miles away from my family to go to college, to creating a business of my own and becoming a homeowner as a single mother in a town hundreds of miles away from any family. And I’m not done yet. I currently have my sights set on getting my real estate license. Do you have any final words of advice? The saying that successful people consistently push themselves outside their comfort zone to achieve their goals certainly holds true for me. I found myself in several situations where I was scared, nervous or intimidated, but I pushed forward! Think about inspirational quotes or mantras that keep you going. Seek out the little words and reminders that speak to you! Surround yourself with positive people and believe in yourself. Be your own biggest fan! s






essica Callihan, 30, has had eleven surgeries—with more in her life to come— since she was injured in a training accident as an officer in the Navy. Although she has many physical challenges, the word “disabled” doesn’t seem to be a word that applies to Jessica. She is very much abled: she is an artist and painter, a veteran, a public speaker, a political lobbyist, a role model, the creative director at Dunn Magazine, a brand representative, and holds countless other titles. She might be best known to people as an angler in both the professional and amateur worlds of fly fishing. One group of several she is a founding member of, Able Women (as with its name) speaks to not only Jessica’s means and influence, but passion for the life and the sport of fly fishing. The group is, “…[A] public outreach initiative designed to spread the word about fly fishing and the many emotional, physical and spiritual benefits it brings to women” ( according to With Able Women and others, she has fished the world over from the U.S. to Chile to Scotland, all while battling often intense physical pain, including severe nerve damage. She talks about this pain rarely and some days are better than others, but often the only signs of it might be her intermittent use of a cane (depending on the pain level), the permanent handicapped tags on her Jeep, or sometimes a stray wince or groan. If one where to perceive Jessica as this “regular” and healthy person living life everyday to its fullest they would be accurate, but she simultaneously bears a kind of subterranean struggle. Most take for granted their health everyday with every solid, pain-free movement and moment. Jessica is not only an example of strength, but also of what perceptions of someone may be incorrect, healthy or not, and how that defines them—and really—how it doesn’t. More about Jessica and her work: https://jessicacallihan. com/about. s W


Laura Pierpont is a fine art and portrait photographer passionate about capturing human experiences through the use of film photography. KNOXVILLE STYLE MAGAZINE 37



From refugees to I foster children and hospitals to non-profits, these women recognize a need, act on it, and invite you to join them.


have had my share of sadness just like everyone else, but I found healing by just jumping in and helping one refugee. Now, I am part of a wonderful, loving non-profit group, The Center for English, which helps hundreds. The needs of refugees are overwhelming. In many ways they are like my special needs daughter. They cannot read or write or speak clearly enough to be understood. Refugees need help with everything. Our clothing is different. Our food is different. Our laws are different. Our way of life is different. Many have never been inside a grocery store and most have never had a brick and mortar house or apartment. They need help with the most basic daily tasks and if left on their own, they would simply be lost. Last week, I took an elderly man to Kroger. He and his wife had been in America for only a couple of weeks. They had been walking in sorrow for a very long time. In Tanzania, they had spent more than ten years in a Refugee Camp. It took almost two hours to help him find the items they wanted. I am grateful for the Google Translate app on my phone! When we finally were ready to check out, he could not remember the pin number to their debit card and all the groceries had to be put back. I thought it was a total disaster. They had been blessedwith a debit card to buy food and other necessities, but they obviously had no idea of the importance of


the pin number. I was certain he would be discouraged and frustrated. Their kitchen cupboards were bare, and they were clearly hungry. As we drove away from the store empty-handed, the man began laughing, clearly recognizing the great irony of the situation. When I heard him laugh, it was such a joy. I soon joined in the laughter and we both began laughing even harder. I am grateful to the West Lonsdale Baptist Church which later opened up their Food Pantry for this couple in need. If you jump in to help a refugee, it doesn’t always go smoothly, but you will be jumping into happiness. I was also privileged to be part of a celebration at Tyson-McGhee Airport when a young girl from Nigeria who had been rescued from traffickers was reunited with her family. The family had prayed for many years for her return. It is one of my greatest memories that I was able to witness the fulfillment of that prayer. The benefits of helping one refugee have led to lifelong friendships with many. I have laughed with them, danced with them, and sang with them. I have been invited to their weddings, and been seated as an honored guest at their special dinners. I am welcomed and showered with love at their churches. Even though I do not understand the words being spoken because the language is different, the love they show me is pure happiness. Jump In.



hy aren’t we fostering kids at our house?” My 8-year-old son looked at me with expectation as he waited for my answer. He had just heard of it, and wondered why his little family who had love, a car, a house, beds, food and toys would not offer all these things to a child in need. Surely there’s a good reason. I opened my mouth to answer with one of the perfectly decent and responsible reasons spinning around in my head. Some were valid, noble even. You may have thought the same things. I am knee deep in parenting my own kids, how could I possibly take on more? You can. You adjust. You plan. You let go of your ideas of the perfect childhood and embrace a larger goal: kids comforting kids, deep resounding empathy, a universe not spinning around themselves—but instead, a world where they get to partake in the beauty of real, walked-out love. You will watch them stretch and grow. I will get attached. It would break my heart. How could I let them go? Attachment is the absolute goal of foster care. It is the glue that makes any relationship worth having. Whether a child is to be united with their parents, absorbed into a family member’s home, or adopted, the goal is that they heal from whatever trauma they have endured. Sometimes that trauma is severe and needs therapeutic or medical intervention. Sometimes the trauma is the removal itself. Our attachment and love is the key in healing a hurting child. Calm and quiet bath times, bedtime prayers, kissing booboos, keeping your promises— these are the simple ways you advocate and help a child heal. Will it rock your world? Absolutely. We just aren’t in that season of life. How could I possibly help? I will admit that some seasons are harder than others when it comes to foster care. Are you building a house or moving, dealing with unexpected health issue, or in financial duress? Yes, any of these examples would make fostering a child a bad idea for your family at the moment. However, are you a little crowded at home, raising a child with ADHD, or living paycheck to paycheck?? Then, welcome to the club! There are reasons, and there are excuses. You can make a difference in the life of a child, and just like any good thing, it will mean stretching and sacrificing. If the time isn’t right, you may donate to a foster parent closet, deliver

a meal to a family, or take a kid out for a movie so the parents can rest. The opportunities are plentiful. It isn’t my calling. How can I parent a child that isn’t my own? The children of our community are our responsibility. We can turn a blind eye or call it someone else’s problem. We can point the finger at the system, the drug epidemic, or even blame the parents themselves and, in many cases, we wouldn’t be wrong. Instead, consider the child waiting in a police car for a CPS worker, or the child that will be ripped away from his teachers and school because there is nowhere for him to go. These children deserve a home and they ARE our own. We don’t have the space or money or time. How could we afford it or make it work? First, I don’t know anyone with an abundance of space, money and time—certainly not all at once or guaranteed to stay that way. Foster families come in all shapes and sizes. A single mom, two moms or two dads, multiple siblings, unmarried roommates, and a family just like yours. Will your priorities change? Absolutely. Décor and throw pillows will easily lose to bunk beds and trundles. Closets will be shared and minivans purchased. Your community will likely change—for the better. Your heart will definitely change—for the best. So, when my 8-year-old asked why we weren’t fostering kids, I froze. No words would come out. Not one of the excuses above would have satisfied him. Not one. He expected more from me. I didn’t answer with what was spinning in my head. I answered with my heart. “I don’t know why we aren’t. I will look into it.” I did. The classes that prepare your family for this adventure are informative and the only way I have found to fully get an idea of what foster care entails. Some of it is heartbreaking; some of it is overwhelming. But more than anything else, it washes away the unknown and the ignorance. It makes the need real and tangible. It puts a face on it and empowers families to risk their feelings. Your family deserves to be radically made over. You will be blessed, challenged and your heart will break. Do it. We are. KNOXVILLE STYLE MAGAZINE 39





s the immensely proud Executive Director of Girls Inc., I came into this role naturally. When I first heard about Girls Inc., I was unsure of the mission and true vision of this organization. When I truly learned and immersed myself into all that is done with young girls—I was hooked! What girl or woman doesn’t benefit from self-confidence building, advocacy awareness and the empowerment of the next generation? Taking the helm of this impactful organization was the most natural decision I have ever made. When you see or meet a Girls Inc. girl, you see a smiling face engaging in science, economics, mentoring programs or sports. You see them building, creating, asking questions, and connecting with their fellow girls. You hear them talk about the industries they want to be in, the goals they have set, and the ways in which they are standing up for each other. But I want you to truly meet our Girls Inc. girls and the women who support them daily, because while they are smiling and being empowered in Girls Inc., they don’t always return to happy homes or healthy homes, or to any homes at all. Now I want you to meet Kate. Kate is a dedicated Girls Inc. mentor who runs an intentional program once a week with a small group of girls called Project Bold. Throughout the school year, volunteer mentors work with certain girls facing difficult challenges to encourage self-confidence building, advocacy skills and support. Lily, especially, loved her Girls Inc. time with her mentor. Each session, Kate asks about her school day; if she experienced any challenges and how she could face those challenges. Lily enjoys crafts, but her mom cannot always afford materials. Kate recognizes the importance of free expression activities as a healthy outlet for stress, so she purchases craft materials for Lily to enjoy and bring home. On the last day of her mentor session, Kate threw an ice cream party for her group. After the Celebration Ceremony, Lily asked her mother if she could stay just a bit longer. Kate men-


tioned to Lily, “That’s really nice of your mom to let you stay”. Lily replied, “She doesn’t want me home anyway”. After the other girls left, Lily began to sob and became very upset. She thought her time with Kate was over, and that she may never meet someone who cared about her so much again. Our staff consoled Lily and assured her that Girls Inc. will always be a part of her school, and that she made a special friendship with her

mentor, one she can always cherish. Mentoring, at its core, guarantees young people will have someone who cares about them, who stands by them through day-today challenges, and makes them feel like they matter. Research confirms that quality mentoring relationships have powerful and positive effects on young people in a variety of personal, academic, and professional situations. Ultimately, mentoring connects a young person to personal growth and development, and social and economic opportunities. Yet one in three young people will grow up without this critical asset. Your bank account, experience or resume isn’t what makes a great mentor. It’s that time you carve out for someone in this world that makes them feel most valued. It’s those brief moments of connection that make the biggest impact in a child’s future— something everyone is capable of giving.   Girls Inc. believes that girls need a safe environment, mentoring relationships, and intentional programming that targets their unique challenges in a girls-only space. This is why the Girls Inc. experience works and how it’s powerful. It doesn’t matter what your race, economic status or ethnic background may be, all girls benefit from building self-confidence and opportunities at Girls Inc.! However, we know that some girls don’t have a supportive home, a warm dinner, or shoes that fit. Girls Inc. makes sure that we are there for the highest-need girls within our community and that they know that someone cares about them when they go home. They can sleep at night knowing that there is a group that supports who they are and what they want to be—that Girls Inc. is in their corner! This is not just a caring environment, we also ensure that girls know all the opportunities they have in this world. They leave knowing women can be a part of any industry, and that it’s okay to be the only woman at the table or in the classroom. We want them to challenge the norm and change the statistics facing women and girls today! We want girls to be fully prepared for their future, but that starts with being educated about what that future may look like—there will be challenges and obstacles, but with the skills they have learned at Girls Inc. and with the support of each other and their community, they can face any obstacle in their way. At the end of the day, a girl with a dream becomes a woman with a vision! s



s children, we all remember the books by Dr. Seuss. I loved them, I loved reading them to my children and remember the time when a family member said to me, “Oh the places you’ll go” … long before Dr. Seuss used this expression as the title of his last published book. Little did I know at that time that I would graduate from college and become a Delta Flight Attendant. Oh the places I went and the people I met; ultimately I married a very special and interesting young man from Knoxville, Tennessee and ended up in this wonderful city for the past 36 years. Moving to new cities never seemed to faze me. As a child, my father worked for a large chemical company as a chemical engineer and we moved when the company promoted him to various management positions. Each place I lived introduced me to wonderful new people and greatly expanded my horizons. As an outgoing person, I welcomed new and

interesting experiences. To this day, anywhere I go I seem to encounter someone from my past. Getting to know people and learning about their lives has been an enjoyable pastime that has allowed me to develop relationships that ultimately prepared me for my current career as a fundraiser and Vice President at East Tennessee Children’s Hospital. Oh the places you’ll go and the people you’ll meet … Imagine a young bride arriving in Knoxville and only knowing her in-laws and their friends. I loved my in-laws and their friends! What an accomplished group of people; interesting and colorful, all with their own story about how they became successful and lived their lives. I made every effort to learn all about them and how these families made things happen in Knoxville because I wanted to discover how to contribute to my new hometown. Throughout my childhood I was taught that charity begins at home, we are responsible for making our communities a better place to live and getting involved enriches your life. With that in mind, I joined the Knoxville Junior League and began my journey with volunteering, and working with community organizations. I met many people who



“Good Luck my Friend” (2016) by Thomas Andrew Saftel in honor of Steve Bailey, given by Ann Bailey

It’s never too late to start making a difference in your community whether it is a volunteer job or a paid position.


helped me grow, learn, stretch and take chances when a new opportunity came my way. What I didn’t realize at the time was that helping others through years of volunteering and getting involved with non-profit organizations would ultimately lead to preparing me for the wonderful career and job that I have today; a career that I started relatively late in life. My resume is not that of a typical business woman; however, the lessons learned are beyond anything I can imagine realizing from a corporate environment alone. Consider a resume that reads something like this: working for Delta Air Lines in the early 80’s, moving to Knoxville as a new bride, becoming a mother to two children 21 months apart, volunteering at Rule High School with the Knoxville Junior League’s Peer Tutoring program; taking a young boy into our home to keep him out of the prison system, collaborating with five local non-profits to form a day care and parent education program for homeless women with children at the Salvation Army, learning how to garden, creating a garden respite at home and ultimately working within five states and eighteen garden clubs to expand the love of gardening and conservation of our natural resources, sitting on and leading numerous non-profit boards involving education, museums, botanical gardens and healthcare and raising money for them, leading a hospital foundation, and finally landing in my current position at East Tennessee Children’s Hospital. Yes, the places I have gone and the people I have met have all contributed to the full life I

have lived and prepared me for the career I have today. Even more importantly, everything I have experienced to prepare me for my career is available to anyone at any stage of their life. Looking back on my life to this moment, none of these accomplishments would be possible without the talented, wise and positive people surrounding, mentoring and encouraging me every step of the way. I absorbed everything I could from interesting people and continue to do so today which brings me to my number one piece of advice: find ways to make you interesting! Take a class, volunteer, read and travel because interesting people draw other people and opportunities toward themselves. Never stop learning. You will be amazed at all the new and exciting opportunities that will come your way if you keep yourself interesting. My second suggestion is to surround yourselves with talented people. It didn’t take me long to observe that the most successful people have a smart team surrounding them to partner to do a good job. Every step of the way, I have been blessed to have great people around me dedicated to doing the job well, including my family, friends, co-workers and current staff at East Tennessee Children’s Hospital. I have always valued and appreciated the team effort that played a major role in any job or endeavor that I have accomplished. One of my core beliefs is that attitude plays a major role in success. Years ago, I used an expression when my children would start complaining or feeling sorry for


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themselves, “Remember, it’s not about me.” I would tell them to say this to themselves and look at life with this attitude. Putting others first will change your entire view on life and ultimately give you a more complete and fulfilling outcome to anything you set out to do. We can all practice this whether we are young students, stay-at-home mothers or professionals. I am asked by friends what job has been the most rewarding. When answering this I have to break it down to two periods of my life, the stay at home mother and the empty nester stages. Hands down, being a mother to my two children has been the most rewarding and the most challenging. I was so fortunate to have those years at home with them and blessed again when they were grown to have a life changing opportunity to work as a full time employee at East Tennessee Children’s Hospital. What a blessing and a privilege it is for me to be able to work every day to make our hospital the best in East Tennessee and to provide the funding it takes to treat the children in our region. Working with my team keeps me involved with young professionals that are eager to learn and interesting to be around. Being a mentor to them is incredibly rewarding. One unusual outcome of my work at the hospital that has given me immense pleasure and is certainly a result of my involvement with the Knoxville Museum of Art is the Art of Healing Program at Children’s Hospital. When we began planning the art for our new Scripps Networks South Tower, I strongly advocated collecting art from Tennessee artists. The challenge was how to pay for and sustain it. With a little bit of seed money and one very generous gift, we were able to begin a sustainable program that has led to a growing collection of amazing art that is both entertaining and comforting to our patients, their families and our staff. It has truly exceeded any and all expectations. It’s never too late to start making a difference in your community whether it is a volunteer job or a paid position. Forget about regretting not doing something earlier in your life because it’s never too late. Use all your past experiences in a positive way to create a better life for you and your community. Several years ago I was visiting my parents in their independent living facility and on the elevator a quote from Dr. Seuss was posted: “Don’t be sad it is over, be happy it happened.” It is never too late to get inspired to make a difference. s


e are all knitted together. Sometimes, seeing why our lives are being woven carefully with others isn’t evident until something big happens and you understand every step, every encounter mattered for a greater purpose. 100 Women Who Care Knoxville started with 6 women being brought together by the overwhelming desire to serve our community. A few years ago my friend, Brooke, casually mentioned an organization called 100 Women Who Care, it had a simple concept that made a big impact. In just one evening each quarter, 100 women gather together, each with $100, and they listen to three local non-profits presenting a financial need. The women vote, and one non profit will leave with $10,000. It’s a small individual contribution that when pooled together, greatly impacts a local non profit. We researched it, prayed over bringing this group to Knoxville, and waited. We knew this would be something big for our community, we just weren’t sure how to make it happen.

We started talking to everyone about this idea. And before we knew it, Brooke and I had an incredible group of ladies meeting for dinner to make this dream a reality. The Lord brought us together, each of us with a unique background and skill set to offer. On June 17, 2016 we had our first official gathering for 100 Women Who Care Knoxville. That night, more than 100 women from all over Knoxville came together and gave $13,000 to Pond Gap Elementary School for a playground. Since then, our community of women has given over $120,000 to local non profit groups. Each quarter, 100+ local ladies are meeting with one goal in mind- together we make a huge impact. When the meeting is over, and all checks have been written, I am deeply grateful. Grateful for Knoxville, 100 Women Who Care, and the six ladies who said “yes” to a stirring in their heart to serve. Join us on July 31 at Hunter Valley Farm as we hear from three more local non profits. Visit for more information. s


865-524-3457 KITCHEN designed by Alice Cloar Hall | cabinetry by Holiday Kitchens

For I consider the present sufferings of this life are not worthy to compare to the glory that shall be revealed in us. -ROMANS 8:18.




ey ladies! My name is Rebecca Dotson and I’m super excited to tell you about how God paved the way for something beautiful to come out of my mom’s cancer journey. On the first day of mom’s chemotherapy journey, God directed my attention to a Scripture that would later become the name for 818 Ministries– Romans 8:18. For I consider the present sufferings of this life are not worthy to compare to the glory that shall be revealed in us. I forwarded it in an email to mom, not realizing that life as I knew it was about to change. In the year that followed mom’s gut-wrenching breast cancer diagnosis, I encountered my calling after a phone call with mom when she told me about a lady she met at chemotherapy. She was alone, very sick, had lost her hair and didn’t have a hat on. This conversation led to a burden, the kind you can’t shake, considering

whether or not this patient knew Jesus as her Savior. A few months later I launched 818 Ministries - dedicated to donating handmade hats and handwritten letters of encouragement to patients fighting serious illnesses. I’ll never forget sitting at my kitchen table with shaky hands typing out the first ever social media post about what God had laid on my heart to do on February 4, 2015. Our Impact Squad travels around the country to find creative ways to connect with and encourage patients as they hand deliver hats made by their volunteers. Most times when we travel to a children’s hospital, we


dress up like princesses and superheroes (Belle, Cinderella, Snow White, Elsa, Ana, Olaf, Jessie, Buzz Lightyear, Nemo and Dorey just to name a few!); and for adult patients we often find influential members of the community to help hand deliver hat packets. In April, I got the honor of taking Philip Fulmer, Todd Kelly Jr. and Evina Westbrook to the downtown location of Thompson Cancer Survival Center to do just that. This year so far we’ve visited hospitals in Knoxville, Memphis, Columbia (SC), Atlanta (GA) and Houston (TX) in person and have received hats from volunteers in eleven states! I can’t wait to watch the doors God continues to open to impact the lives of patients fighting serious illnesses. 818 Ministries now accepts preemie sized octopuses that remind babies of the umbilical cord as they snuggle; port pillows for a more comfortable car ride for a cancer patient; and drain aprons for patients after a mastectomy surgery. My life mission statement is to leave people better and knowing Jesus more fully than when they met me. It amazes everyone involved to see the impact made by an encouraging word, a volunteer in costume, or a handmade gift. The last time I visited St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, a parent approached me while her child was in the floor playing with my volunteer dressed up as Elsa. She said her child had left chemotherapy really upset that morning and had a really tough week. She said she hadn’t seen her daughter smile in weeks. She was laughing and playing in the floor with Elsa, wearing her Frozen-themed hat crocheted by a volunteer. Creating those moments for families is what God created me for. s

Rebecca Dotson is a millennial entrepreneur leaving people better than she found them, one hat at a time. She puts her passion in action to bring hope and love through handknit hats and handwritten letters.



y sons and I arrived in Knoxville in August of 2016 with high hopes, and that’s about it. We weren’t sure what would come next, but believed we were meant to be here. This journey has been everything that I dreamed it would be and so much more. Knoxville is where my dreams have taken flight at Elevation Arts! My childhood dream was to own a gym like my mom’s amazing gymnastics school in Indiana. I became a coach and followed in her footsteps for fifteen years, but after the arrival of my sons, I faced new choices and, thankfully, new experiences. One lit a fire in me that I couldn’t ignore. I found aerial silks and aerial yoga while living in Sarasota, FL. My boys and I were walking through the park at Marina Jacks and came across this beautiful display of acrobats and fabric hanging from the trees. For a moment, I left my complicated adult life and entered a world of imagination and excitement. There were men running and flipping on slacklines that stretched 50 yards from tree to tree. There were hand balancing, acro yoga, contortion, and of course, aerial silks and lyra (a suspended hoop, think circus). The world and its worries seemed to melt away while we watched, mesmerized. Fast forward to December 2016. A dear friend from Florida asked if I would take her aerial yoga certification class. I said yes purely for the opportunity to practice again and stay plugged in to this amazing community. The very same week in Knoxville, I mentioned this certification to another friend and get this… they connected me with someone looking to use his building specifically for aerial arts! You can’t make this


stuff up! My prayers had been answered in a matter of days. Elevation Arts and Fitness opened its doors just three months later. The heart of Elevation Arts is much more than a boutique fitness facility. Our purpose is to empower men and women, to give them hope. We are a place of inclusion and diversity. We recently hosted our one year anniversary party, and the feedback that we received was exactly what we hoped for.




“I was shocked by how diverse and loving the performers and students were! Everyone seemed so happy, like they were a part of something huge,” one spectator said. Our goal is to bring people together and create a loving community. We believe very strongly that no matter your fitness level, education, job status, beliefs, race, or anything else, people are meant to be there for one another. Everyone is welcome to be a part of this community of dreamers that show up to love, support, and encourage each other. We are a village. A regular student recently wrote this message: “Watching my physical body transform and strengthen to accomplish new skills, motivates me to see how my mind can also become stronger and healthier.” We offer classes in Aerial Yoga (yoga using a hammock), Aerial Silks (fabric hanging from the ceiling), Yoga, Pound (a drumming workout), barre and Hip Hop. Allow us to create a positive atmosphere to lift you up...literally! Leave your worries at the door and discover how amazing you truly are. s

Stephanie demonstrates moves on her lyra in her new lakeside studio.



BY L I NDA PA RS O N S an d JAY N E M O RGA N Photographs by Mark Best

FLYING ANVIL THEATRE Mary’s Wedding Emily Helton and Parker Jenkins



That pretty much says what we’re all about. Since 2012, we’ve been telling audacious, heart-filled stories with professional actors, directors, and designers to rave reviews. We produced shows all around town, and an early production was featured at the prestigious Piccolo Spoleto Festival in Charleston, SC. Last July, we finally opened our own intimate, fully equipped 150-seat space at 1300 Rocky Hill Road. Our first year in our new home has produced a season of first-rate comedies, dramas, and musicals. From the wacky The Great American Trailer Park Musical to the lyrical Mary’s Wedding, we aim high with every show and have more great ones coming. The Legend of Georgia McBride by Matthew Lopez is a bold, brassy comedy about an Elvis impersonator who becomes an accidental drag performer. The non-profit partner for this show was

s the name implies, Flying Anvil Theatre earns its wings through hard work and Emily Cullum and Carolyn Corley dedication to excellent, daring theatre not Positively Living, which offers care, support, ordinarily seen in Knoxville. One of the first and hope for those living with HIV/AIDS in questions we’re asked is….why the name? our community. We wanted something celebratory with a The new space has allowed us to schedule local connection that captured the quixotic and other community events ambitious nature of startsuch as Poets in Progress, ing a professional theatre a reading by local poets to company. On July 4, 2011, celebrate National Poetry our founders, Jayne MorMonth. Also, The Hammer gan (now artistic director) Ensemble, directed by and Staci Swedeen, visited John Ferguson, focuses the Museum of Appalachia on social issues and earlier to witness a historic anvil this year presented their shoot. Two anvils were first original work, The Pall: stacked on top of one In the Shadows of Human another with a layer of Trafficking, developed by black powder in between. the ensemble, Ferguson, A fuse was lit and BAM! and Linda Parsons. The Something very difficult to ensemble will present get off the ground soared Lockdown, a piece on upward with an exciting school shootings, explosion! The Love Talker – Carolyn Corley

book NOOK

The Great American Trailer Park Musical – Chevy Anz, Tiffany Fenech, Dana Wham, Emily Helton

September 6–8 at Flying Anvil. The Hammer partners with agencies such as the Community Coalition Against Human Trafficking and Moms Demand Action (on gun control) to raise funds for the organization’s local community activities. Flying Anvil Theatre and its Board of Directors have embraced the crazy challenge of presenting first-rate theatre in a beautiful space. Many audience members tell us they never miss a production. They even rave about our comfy seats! Our goal is to grow our Mandy Lawson audiences and mature into a nationally respected theatre company— and we invite you to join us and help Flying Anvil Theatre soar into the future. See for ticket and sponsorship packages and how to donate. For details on registering for classes and camps or renting our space, call 865-357-1309. s

Ashlea Bushman Ownbey reads way too many books and spends the rest of her free time at HSTV finding homes for animals.

Cambridge, Massachusetts in the late 1960’s. When their first son is born, he is afflicted with a name that is neither Indian nor American but that of a Russian authors last name. Gogol’s unusual name and his struggle with being an Indian son in the land of America make it hard for him to find his own identity. This empathetic novel examines the immigrant experience, culture This month for my book clashes and the tangled ties picks, I thought about between generations. the themes we are using My third pick is “ Amerthroughout the issue, and icanah” by Chimamanda decided to read some books Ngozi Adichie (Alfred A. about what it’s like to imKnopf 2013). As teenagmigrate to America through ers in Nigeria, Ifemelu and the eyes of three different Obinze, fall deeply in love. nationalities. With their country under military dictatorship and he first book is “Girl in Translation” by Jean with strikes and power outages happening conKwok (Riverhead Books stantly, they decide to go to 2010). This is the story America for college. Ifemelu of 11-year-old Kimberly Chang and her mother who ends up getting her papers emigrate from Hong Kong to a Brooklyn squalor in the late 1990s. Kim quickly begins to live a secret double life. She’s a brilliant schoolgirl during the day and a Chinatown sweatshop worker by night. This novel brings to life the struggle to succeed in America while trying to stay true to your culture, especially when you only understand about half to the United States but a of what is being said and family emergency forces done around you. Obinze to stay behind. The second book I Despite many academic chose is “The Namesake” successes and new relationby Jhumpa Lahiri (Harper Perennial 2003). This ships, Ifemelu grapples for gorgeously written the first time in her life with racism and identity. After story follows a gaining notoriety for her Bengali family blog about race in Ameriwho emigrate to


ca, Ifemelu decides to go back to a now democratic Nigeria and try to make her life there. Can she and Obinze reignite their shared passion—for their homeland and each other? I cannot say how much I loved this novel. I felt that Ifemelu is one of the most realistic and one of strongest female

characters I have ever read. This book tackles race with such honesty and grace, in ways I had never even thought about before. As a side note: these are not the typical books I gravitate towards. Not because I’m disinterested but because I felt that I wouldn’t relate to characters with such a different life experience. Now I know I’ve been missing out on some true gems and felt a deep kinship with some of these characters. What I gained from reading these novels is realizing that we are all just human beings with dreams, hopes, struggles and tragedies. Our experiences may be different, but every single one of us is just trying to navigate this thing called life. s


found SOUND






ou probably can’t tell by looking, but I’m a Brooklyn, NY transplant who moved to Knoxville many years ago by way of Jersey City, NJ and many other places. I am truly grateful to the Knoxville area allow me to resurge as a vocalist/performer after many dormant years. I feel enormously blessed to be embraced musically the way Knoxville has embraced me. Since there’s a lot about people you can’t tell by looking, it’s only fair and logical that I share with you a little more about myself. Hi, my name is Jeanine Fuller.  I am a divorced mom of two beautiful daughters (one a grown adult and one a teenager), who previously had a fairly successful music performance career which allowed me to travel abroad and around the U.S.  I met all kinds of wonderful & interesting people from all walks of life. I have been a business owner, a paraprofessional, and also made


a comeback from homelessness. Currently, I am an active local singer and performer of jazz, blues, soul, funk rock, including some musical theatre and even classical and operatic music. Despite all of my experience and versatility, I struggle being not just a black female, but a black female leader in music. There are challenges of being stereotyped, overlooked, ignored, and sometimes dismissed because I do not fit the bill or the build. Granted our tastes in music, clothes, art, and anything creative will not all be the same, but it is these differences that make us unique & essentially gives us our style. My goal as a singer, performer, artist, public speaker & motivator is to bring everyone together. To bridge gaps. To touch the heart and soul. I feel that we should throw away those boxes we have, because we never really know what’s there until it is opened up & let out. Our talents come from a higher source, therefore, as the late great singer Marian Anderson desired, they should be colorless. It is pertinent that we embrace the gifts shared by the givers, and by doing so, we will grant more equal opportunities. We can at least try. I will start with me because I want to be the change I want to see. Feel free to follow me on Facebook at JeanineFullerMusicPage; Instagram at and Reverbnation at: JeanineFuller. Or check out my website at:

ong references often come to my mind while I may be in conversation or just thinking of something or someone. The song reference that comes to mind when describing local musician and singer, Deidre Ford, is Peggy Lee’s, I’m a Woman. It appears that Deidre can accomplish more tasks in one day than any one person can accomplish in a week. She is not only a skilled multi-instrumentalist and singer, but the Director of Ensemble Swing Time (a non-profit big band based out of Knoxville), she manages a small, software development unit at the University of Tennessee, and is a wife and mother of four. It is always a delight chatting with Deidre, and she is allowing me to share some of our “girl talk” with Knoxville Style Magazine.

University of Tennessee and finally after a number of years off and on, I finished that degree. I actually started performing less than 10 years ago.”

Deidre Ford

“Well, that wore me out right there. [Laughs.] So what have you been up to lately, regarding music projects?” “Our group Ensemble Swing Time recently performed in the Women in Jazz Jam Festival, here in Knoxville. We were fortunate enough to collaborate with the acclaimed violinist, Diane Monroe. I’m still reeling from that experience.” —Jeanine Fuller

“What instruments do you play and how long have you been playing?” “I play clarinet, bass, clarinet, alto, tenor, bari sax, flute, piano and some hammered dulcimer. I also sing. I’ve been playing piano since I was about 5 (my mom was my first piano teacher), and the clarinet since about 9 years old or so. I was a music major at the

“What is your favorite music genre or music strength(s)?” “I have eclectic tastes. I’m a definitely a generalist. I’m a classically trained clarinetist, but sing jazz. Knoxville is a great haven for someone with eclectic tastes.” “What bands and/or groups do you play and perform with?” “I play with a number of groups. I love to collaborate. It’s my biggest pleasure as well as my biggest vice, because I want to play with everyone and I tend to overcommit. I play tenor sax and vocals with Original Soul Sanction; tenor sax & vocals with The Deltas; woodwinds/vocals and directing The Ensemble Swing Time; vocalist & bass clarinet with Oak Ridge Community Band; and I play in all the orchestra pits for musical theatre.”

MARK CARSON ENGLISH Studio/Gallery | 130 West Jackson Avenue | Knoxville TN 37915 | 615.479.7279 markcarsonenglishstudio |

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P ool s i de

El Floridita no. 1 (The Original Daiquiri) We at Libacious are daiquiri evangelists. On a hot day, really is nothing better than the holy trinity of rum, sugar, and lime. It works if you’re at the pool and it works if you’re trying to cool off in a dark, air-conditioned bar. Over the years, the daiquiri has become synonymous with candy-colored frozen drinks (which have their place, too!), but the original recipe is simple, sophisticated, and oh so refreshing. 2 ounces white rum ¾ ounce Luxardo Maraschino ¾ ounce lime juice Lime or brandied cherry for garnish Shake with ice, and strain into a chilled coupe. Garnish with a lime wheel or cherry.


Three Refreshing Cocktails to Keep You Cool this Summer


here’s a famous piece of advice from a Dear Abby column written in response to a man who wanted to change careers and go to medical school, but he was worried about how old he would be when he earned his M.D. Abby asked, “And how old will you be in seven years if you don’t do it?” That answer is gold, a great reminder not to dwell on the wrong questions. For anyone who wants to start a business — and for women in particular — it is easy to worry too much about whether it’s the right time. As women, we often feel like we need to


p or c h sitting

On The Sunny Side Yes, you CAN have a refreshing summer cocktail with whiskey! The spiciness of rye pairs beautifully with Aperol’s bright citrus, and when you top it with club soda, it’s hard to beat. 1.5 oz. rye whiskey 1.5 oz. Aperol 3 oz. club soda Build in a highball glass over ice and garnish with an orange slice.

weddi ng Moderne 75

This is a fresh take on a French 75 using an Elderberry Liqueur from local distillery PostModern Spirits. It’s dry and floral, with the right amount of effervescence for a celebration. 1 oz gin 1/2 oz PoMo Elderberry Gin Liqueur 1/4 oz lemon juice 3 oz brut cava Shake, strain, top with cava and garnish with a lemon twist. 

SUMMERTIME be overqualified and overprepared before ever taking the first step. When we started Libacious last year (along with Casey’s husband, Jesse), we didn’t know if Knoxville was ready for a premium cocktail catering service. But we were tired of going to parties and events where the only options were red, white or brews. So we decided that we would find our own market, and what do you know? It worked! We trusted our experience -- what we knew, and what we valued -- and we are finding that when you trust yourself, other people trust you, too. Women are more likely to think we must have a perfectly contained package ready before showing it to the world. We think we can control the whole

thing, keep it tidy, and preclude surprises. The truth is, once we begin a project, we’re propelled in directions we can’t predict. Opportunities we can’t imagine will be laid in our path. A year after starting Libacious, we’re excited about where this company is headed. But we accept we can’t possibly know precisely where that is. It’s not all up to us. This time a year ago, that was an unsettling prospect, because not knowing can be terrifying. A year later, that same notion is full of promise because we know that doing stuff makes it easier to do more stuff. And we’re the same ages we would have been if we had never started the business at all. The child of a restaurant owner and sommelier, Casey learned from an early age the important role drinks play in fostering communion and celebration.


merellis_logo_noDistress.pdf 1 3/7/2017 11:25:41 AM









The Best Italian Cuisine in Knoxville IN THE HEART OF BEARDEN

Now serving lunch 11:00 am - 3:00 pm Happy hour starts at 2:00 pm - 7:00 pm Open at 11:00 am daily Lunch: Mon - Sat / Mon - Thur 11:00 am - 10:00 pm Friday and Saturday 11:00 am - 11:00 pm Lunch/brunch menu on Saturday Closed Sunday Except for Special Events

“Meet me at Merelli’s”



Sweet Heat Vegetarian Tacos BY RACHEL L. WILHELM




ummer cookouts can be hard for vegetarians or those looking for healthier alternatives to your typical grill fare. Instead of settling for salad and veggie trays, bring these flavorful bean burgers to your next gathering! They can easily be made ahead of time and keep well in the freezer, so you can enjoy your company rather than doing prep work. Instead of typical burgers toppings, serve with a cucumber salad and tzatziki sauce on pita bread “buns” for a unique Mediterranean twist. We’ve also left out ega binding agent, so if you’re vegan, sub dairy-free yogurt in the tzatziki sauce! (Go to to see the recipes.)



hen did diversity become a bad word? As I was scrolling through my social media feed recently, an article caught my attention with a glaring title: “EMPHASIZING DIVERSITY INSTEAD OF UNITY IS PATHWAY TO CHAOS.” Diversity has a been a red hot topic for the last few years. Political correctness has never been at such an all-time importance. Turning the article upside down, I chose to investigate unity as the thing that will supposedly save us in this crazy world. Don’t worry, this isn’t political rant... Unity - Noun:/ The state of being united or joined as a whole. In 2018, this is a word that carries a connotation of suspicion. What is unity, really? I want to turn a heavy topic into light subject matter. Think about a few of the things you love that EVERYONE likes. Puppies. Chocolate. Monday holidays. Beans? Wait…what? While they may have not been high on your list, stop to think about it for a moment. No barbeque is complete without baked beans. Taco Tuesday would fall flat. “Jack and the Beanstalk” would just be a terrifying fairytale about a child starving to death. The truth is, people enjoy beans. Everyone representing all the subgroups we’ve divided ourselves into, in dietary terms. If you put

a vegan, a vegetarian, and a carnivore/omnivore in a room, you can bet there will be some disagreement. There is one thing they can agree on, however (other than the fact that doing taxes is the worst)…beans are amazing. Beans are one of the oldest cultivated crops in history. Their importance has been noted in many ancient civilizations, from hieroglyphic illustrations of the Egyptians to 12th century North Germanic languages. They have been found in tombs, folklore, and used as currency. Beans boast high levels of protein, folate, fiber, and iron. They provide vitamins and nutrients other plants could only dream of delivering. No wonder they are revered as an underrated superfood. Beans are also known to be one of the cheapest source of nutrition in the WORLD. Google anything along the lines of “cheap food to make” or “cooking on a budget” and if beans aren’t at the top of the list, they are very close. This is one reason they are often a staple in poorer parts of the world and third world countries. When dried, their shelf life is infinite. When cooked, they expand to three times their bulk. Feeding the masses is harder and harder as we face a worldwide food crisis. Their stability and cost

effectiveness are not overlooked by the wealthy, however. Looking at high end restaurants, particularly those boasting “rustic” or “farm to table” dining experiences, beans are moving from a side dish to center stage. And here we see the unity. Vegetarians and vegans alike use beans as a primary replacement for meat. Beans also have a symbiotic relationship with hamburgers and hotdogs. Huevos rancheros. Chili. Rice. Cornbread. Pork. Greens. I could go on and on. I honestly don’t know a meat-eater that doesn’t enjoy beans. Except for my nine year old niece, but she also hates chocolate and dogs…so can she really be trusted? Here in turbulent times, we need a hero. Something to bring everyone together. Preferably to the dinner table. An arena where peace treaties have been drawn up, forgiveness has been shared, and love is abound. We the people. United by beans. s Rachel @shestrayedsouth is a lover of ethnic food, bubbly wine, fat ponies, and exploring the South, one bite at a time.



Visit us for a unique and fun shopping experience in downtown Loudon!



322 Grove Street | Loudon, TN 37774 |


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Knoxville Style Magazine  

Volume 1, Issue 3 of Knoxville Style Magazine.

Knoxville Style Magazine  

Volume 1, Issue 3 of Knoxville Style Magazine.

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