Story by Kendra Maness, Editor/Publisher Photos by Paul Wood Photography
2016 Women Build “I had a dream about you,” Kentrell said to me in November 2015, at the Habitat for Humanity Art Auction. “I have been praying to God for help with Habitat, and He sent me you as the answer to my prayers.” I barely heard her amongst the revelry of music and friends at one of my favorite events of the year. Certainly, she was joking. I had become friends with Kentrell Jones, Habitat’s indomitable Executive Assistant, over the past few years, and brushed it off as a friendly joke. In the party atmosphere, we chatted about the auction and agreed to meet at a later date so I could hear about her dream.
Kendra Maness Slidell Magazine Publisher Spokesperson 2016 Women Build 26
East St. Tammany Habitat for Humanity has always held a special place in my heart. I participated in my first Women Build shortly after moving back home to Slidell in 2010. That’s when I learned about Habitat’s mission and importance, and loved the experience of working side by side with other women to create a home for a family. Fast forward four years or so and the bond with the Habitat family was sealed when I joined Executive Director Debbie Crouch, Habitat ReStore Manager Eric Jones, artist Lori Gomez and Marketing Specialist Kim Bergeron on their journey to Kentucky to obtain the signature of the two surviving
Debbie Crouch Executive Director East St. Tammany Habitat For Humanity
Beatles, Ringo Starr and Sir Paul McCartney, on a piano donated to Habitat and beautifully restored and painted by Lori. As Debbie, Eric and I sat outside of a hotel room at 2am, in the middle of nowhere-Kentucky (or maybe it was Georgia?), and stared at the broken down van that held the priceless piano en route to Paul McCartney’s concert (and signature) in Louisville, KY, I talked with the Habitat crew about their mission, their goals, and the awful predicament we were in. Their determination for their cause and the success of our mission was inspiring. The van was eventually fixed, just in time for our meeting with Paul McCartney. He signed
Kentrell Jones Executive Asst./Dreamer East St. Tammany Habitat For Humanity
Paul Wood Rosie Campaign Photo Guru Paul Wood Photography