TOPS in Lexington: March 2021

Page 1






MARCH 2021 • vol. 15 no. 3


VOL 15 NO. 3

Leaders of Lexington 24 25 26

Digital Playbook:

Targeted Display Hits the Mark! Must Read/Must Stream Leadership Books You Should Actually Read





Kelly Corcoran Urban League Young Professionals











54 56 59



Mike Cyrus Hallie Tassins Kyra Elzy Spring Cleaning Storied & Southern Leading More Clearly At Home DIY:

A Little Bit of Spring Fever Home Life Meets Work Life



Keep up with the Who’s Who, What’s New and What to Do by following us on social media, subscribing to our email newsletter and visiting our website!


SWITCH “I’ve been a CPA for 30 years and worked with many different financial

institutions, but Traditional Bank feels like family. They provide great service and are there whenever I need them. I never have to worry about anything.” SARAH NEELEY, MILL RIDGE FARM Financial Manager

Hear Sarah’s story at


Leaders of Lexington 64 67

The Rules of Leading a Meeting


88 119

Town Branch Park Updates Networking: T.C.B. in the Age of COVID


Business Communication:



195 196


Making it Personal Dress for Success for Men Hiring Employees in Recovery Local Spotlight:

New Look with Salon Suites of the Bluegrass





Work Approved Makeup The Art of Making Yourself Memorable


Keep up with the Who’s Who, What’s New and What to Do by following us on social media, subscribing to our email newsletter and visiting our website!

200 204

LIFE IS BETTER WITH YOU IN IT. Visit to schedule your colonoscopy. The American Cancer Society now recommends having this potentially lifesaving procedure at age 45* for a better chance to survive, and even prevent, colon cancer. Do it for yourself. Do it for those you love. Do it for all the memories yet to be made.

Corbin | Floyd | Hardin | La Grange | Lexington | Louisville | Madisonville | Paducah | Richmond

*Please check with your insurance provider if under age 50.


Leaders of Lexington 204 210 216 221 225


Women Dress for Success


WOW Wedding:

Sierra + Chris Wedding Insider: Why You Should Definitely Hire a Wedding Planner Dining Rules of Business Dining:

The Working Person’s Cookbook











Out + About Valentine’s Day Wear Red Day Snow Day! Out + About: Essential Reading


Keep up with the Who’s Who, What’s New and What to Do by following us on social media, subscribing to our email newsletter and visiting our website!


DOWN SYNDROME ASSOCIATION of Central Kentucky Down Syndrome Association of Central Kentucky, known as DSACK, was founded in 1993 by a group of parents. Now the organization serves hundreds of families in Central and Eastern Kentucky, supporting their joys and challenges. DSACK ooers programs for new parents, for pr toddlers, for college-bound adults with Down syndrome, along with dance and cooking classes, a book club, parent advocacy lab and more. e organization also provides education for teachers, therapists and medical professionals to celebrate the beauty that is Down syndrome. You are invited to visit and help fulfil their vision of communities where people with Down syndrome are valued and included throughout their lives.

my business is




Text IWU to58052 for more information




TOPS TOPS 465 East High Street, Suite 201 Lexington, KY 40507 859.543.8677 100 Executive Park, Suite 101 Louisville, KY 40207 502.780.7825




Executive Vice President


PICTURE THIS Book one of our talented photographers at

ADVERTISE TOP Marketing Group can get your message in front of Central Kentuckians everywhere through print, digital, email and social media. Email us at



CHAD HOWARD Vice President of Digital Marketing


Director of Operations

Senior Account Executive

Get the latest issue, hot off the press. 1 year (12 monthly issues): $19 2 years (24 monthly issues): $36 Subscribe today at

LOG ON The best and latest Who’s Who, What’s New and What To Do. |



Account Executive


Digital Strategist

Business Manager



WHAT TO DO MARCH 2021 • vol. 15 no. 3

AMANDA HARPER Vice President of Production

HALEY NORRIS Senior Designer

The Ogee


Research suggests that our eyes and brain can detect changes as small as 1mm in the face of others almost instantly. Therefore, maintaining these very subtle contours is a key in the battle against visible ageing. The aesthetically ideal, youthful cheek should have a fuller upper portion which gently curves into a less full lower portion. Architects call this shape an ogee curve. Over time however, the aging process leads to a decrease of the malar fat pad which blunts the natural ogee curve. Conversely, fat tends to accumulate along the jaw line creating a jowl. Although these changes are programmed in our genetic code, it doesn’t mean we just surrender and watch them occur.

TWO FREQUENTLY USED OPTIONS TO RESTORE THE YOUTHFUL OGEE ARE FAT GRAFTING AND DERMAL FILLER TREATMENT. Dermal fillers are injectable medications which are designed to plump the tissue. For the upper cheek area, the most utilized products are Restylane Lyft®, Juvederm Voluma®, and Sculptra®. In our experience, dermal fillers tend to last longer in the upper cheek area than in other areas of the face. We assume this is due to less motion in this area, but the deeper place-

ment of the filler in this region may also enhance longevity. Fillers have advantages including convenience, ease of placement, predictable duration, and a high safety margin. If performed properly, dermal fillers can provide a very satisfying, soft and natural cheek ogee curve.

Fat grafting provides the ultimate upper cheek restoration since it is a completely natural replacement of the original material. However, it is not without limitations. A donor area is required and there is much more variability in the response from patient to patient as compared to a dermal filler. More than one fat grafting treatment may be required to achieve the desired result.

THE OPTIONS ARE BROAD IN THE QUEST TO RESTORE THE NATURALLY BEAUTIFUL OGEE CURVE OF THE CHEEK. Our three expert-level nurse injectors and Dr. Kirn are devoted to safely achieving a natural appearing restoration of youthful facial contours by offering a full spectrum of options. Dr. David Kirn is a Board-Certified Plastic Surgeon who is devoted to advanced techniques in Cosmetic Surgery of the Face, Breast, and Body. Dr. Kirn, Carey Sanders, RN, Shirley Ramsey DNP, APRN, and Tara Smith APRN offer a full spectrum of non-surgical treatments such as Botox®, Dysport®, Dermal 859.296.3195 Fillers, & Laser.


YOUR TRUSTED ADVISOR IN ALL THINGS REAL ESTATE. Rusty Underwood, Realtor® | 859-312-8747 |



Hello again Dear Reader, Leadership. You know it when you see it. Welcome to our 2nd annual Leaders in Lexington issue, in which we celebrate one of the most challenging and most rewarding professions of all. All of us are a product of someone’s leadership. Your parents, a coach, a mentor, spiritual leader, or a manager are prime examples. Everyone knows how competitive the business world is today. Not only are local businesses facing and meeting the challenges of a Covid-19 world, but they also now face competition from online shopping and social media. All that in addition to their regular business competitors. The world has changed rapidly in the last few years. We are excited for you to meet Leaders in Lexington area businesses. These Lexington Leaders have not only adapted to their quickly changing environments, but they have also led their organizations to adapt and succeed. They do it all to give you, dear reader, the best service possible. This is also our “Business Book.” Read all about networking, business communication, looking your best in the workplace, home office décor and more. From The Workin’ Person’s Cookbook to The Five Leadership Books You Should Actually Read, if you are in business, we have you covered. TOPS is proud to bring you Inspirations celebrating Women’s History Month. Meet Kyra Elzy, the new UK Women’s basketball coach who was suddenly thrust into the spotlight after the unexpected departure of Matthew Mitchell due to a health-related issue. We hit the high notes with Kelly Corcoran, Interim Artistic Advisor of the Lexington Philharmonic, and are proud to introduce you to Hallie Lee, local author. Learn how the Lexington Urban League Young Professionals organization is changing the face of success throughout Lexington. One of our TOPS photographers, Mike Cyrus, details his battle with stomach cancer. You will be inspired, as we all are here in the office. There are our regular features you will enjoy. Breeze through a Storied & Southern Tour of Homes. While you’re at it, discover The Art of Making Yourself Memorable. Find out how the Lexington Police Department Police Immersion Program is giving youth in our community a voice and a connection to the department. And get the latest scoop on Town Branch Park. As always, dear reader, thank you for supporting the local businesses you see advertising in TOPS magazine. Their leadership makes this magazine possible every month. Let them know they are appreciated.

Until next month,

r e b r a Y Keith

Editor’s Picks Hello Friends! Who’s ready for spring? March means spring is on its way, and we’re celebrating with these colorful, whimsical goods designed to upgrade your work, home and style just in time for the warmer days ahead!

Fran Elsen,

For Your Purse: Emergency Shortbread Tube from

For Your Desk: Enamel Trinket Trays from WorldsApart

Editor-in-Chief of TOPS

For Your Ear Glam: Locally Handmade Natural Wood & Stone Earrings from M+H Beads (A portion of each sale goes to a local medical clinic serving the uninsured!

For Your Bookcase: Customized Standing Small Jockey Statue from The Keeneland Shop

March 2021 |

For Your Mental Escape: The Wonder Boy of Whistle Stop by Fannie Flagg



DO YOU EVER WONDER HOW THE PERFECT AD ALWAYS SEEMS TO FIND YOU? There is a method to the madness. With TARGETED DISPLAY ADS, you can precisely pinpoint customers demographically, geographically and generate trackable leads. Targeted display advertising uses static images and video of various sizes to display advertisements on websites and apps while users surf the web. Targeted display advertising is digital marketing that targets potential customers based on a wide set of variables, such as demographics, online habits and interests. Unlike Pay Per Click (PPC) or Cost Per Click (CPC) advertising, targeted display advertising is charged by the impression (CPM) and not by how many people clicked on the banners. TACTICS MATTER The first step to kick off your targeted display campaign is identifying your business goals and determining which tactics are most relevant to your campaign. In most cases, campaigns will use a blend of tactics, such as: • Site Retargeting – This tactic targets users who have visited your website. This is important because there’s a higher chance of conversion with someone who has

already shown an interest in your product or service. • Search Retargeting – People searching for specific keywords and/or phrases will be targeted with your banners. The keywords selected are based on search volume and relevance to the campaign. • Contextual –Targets ads next to relevant content on a website • Geo-Fencing – Targets people who visit specific physical locations, such as your competitor’s store or events happening in your city. Once a person enters the geo-fence, they can be targeted through their mobile device for up to 30 days. • Advanced Audience Targeting – Combination of demographic and behavioral information used to target ads The blend of tactics used in a campaign depends on the needs and goals of your business. Each campaign is uniquely designed to optimize your budget and provide the best results. The key is knowing your company and the audience you want to reach. It’s incredible how much we can now do and are doing for our clients. We have the capabilities of any ad agency or digital agency can offer. TO LEARN MORE, REACH OUT TO CHAD OR LINDSEY FOR A FREE DIGITAL CONSULTATION.


TOPS in Lexington | March 2021

what to watch this month:

Risky Business

The Wolf of Wall Street Comedy/Drama - Rated R Witness broker Jordan Belfort’s madcap rise to (and fall from) Wall Street infamy. Scorsese makes this raunchy romp fun until it’s not, just like the corrupt cash boom it was based on.

Joy Biographical Drama - Rated PG-13 Watch Joy Mangano, founder of a family business empire, as she struggles for success. While her story is anything but a “Joy,” it’s still a powerful story (told by a roster of powerhouse actors!)

Mad Men Drama - Rated TV-14 Follow the tipsy exploits of 1960s Madison Avenue ad executives in this moody period drama. If you somehow missed this when it was on, don’t wait another day to start streaming.

The Pursuit of Happyness Biographical Drama - Rated PG-13 Based on the life of real-life broker Chris Gardner, this film tells the story of a homeless father who goes on to become a multi-millionaire. Get the tissues ready for this inspiring film!

March 2021 |

Wall Street Drama - Rated R No line better encapsulated Wall Street in the 1980s: “Greed, for lack of a better word, is good!” Gordon Gekko was named as one of AFI’s Top 100 movie villains for good reason.

Glengarry Glen Ross Drama, Mystery - Rated R He wasn’t the star of the movie, but Alec Baldwin’s “motivational” speech in this 1992 movie is unforgettable. The dark look behind the scenes of a cutthroat real estate office is a must-see.


The Motive:

Books on Leadership

You Should Actually Read!

LEADERSHIP is not another trendy term for the 21st century: it’s been a fundamental need among teams of all types since the beginning of time. And for just about as long, self-proclaimed “leaders” of all walks have tried to hawk books that claim to teach you the magical art of leading well. While every book on leadership swears it will make you a certified boss in five easy steps, many aren’t even worth the paper they’re printed on. We asked from local leaders to share their fave reads on leadership to help you start reading about leading tonight!

Why So Many Leaders Abdicate Their Most Important Responsibilities by Patrick Lencioni (2020) asks what motivates people to choose to be a leader through a fictional story asking whether it’s for “rewards” or “responsibility”. Lencioni also discusses the five dysfunctions of a team.

Leadership is an Art

by Max Dupree (2004). In what has become a bible for the business world, the successful former CEO of Herman Miller, Inc., explores how executives & managers can learn the leadership skills that build a better, more profitable organization.

The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership by John Maxwell (2007). Learn the basics for beginning leaders and the more advanced skills for the experienced leader. Through case studies, study questions, leadership insights, and discussion questions, this book is a prerequisite on every reading list.

+1 for cheap therapy:

Dare to Lead


TOPS in Lexington | March 2021

Half Time:

Mo in rom ccess to i ni cance by Robert Buford (2008) is a timeless book, o en referenced by other leadership authors. uford asks leaders in the middle of their careers what they want to do in the second half of their lives. promotion, second career, volunteerism, philanthropy, hobbies, and spiritualism are some of the questions asked. hat s next on the hori on in your career

The Art of War

by Sun Tzu (5th century B.C.). landmark book studied for centuries by both military leaders and business leaders worldwide even today.

Yes, Really.

ny book quoted frequently by ordon ekko might seem like something youd want to skip... ut this book is ranked as a favorite among Lexington Leaders and kings alike.Its fans include ill elichick and eneral ouglas Mac rthur, so maybe there s something to it

WHY BUY LOCAL? Multiplier effect: Spending money at locally owned merchants, restaurants, and service providers keeps money circulating closer to home. When you spend money at a local business, three times as much stays in the community compared to dollars spent at a national chain business. Nurturing community: Independent, locally owned businesses know their customers and cater to the specific needs and diverse preferences of Central Kentuckians. Local businesses also support community causes at more than twice the rate of national chains. by Brené Brown (2018). nless youve been living under a rock, you ve heard about rowns work on vulnerability perhaps from et ix . In this book, she champions the power of staying curious and leaning in to develop the potential of others in your workplace.

Do yourself and our community a favor by shifting a bit more spending to our local merchants, restaurants, service providers, artists, and nonprofit organizations.

March 2021 |



Kelly Corcoran

Interim Artistic Advisor Kelly Corcoran brings her experience and enthusiasm to the Lexington Philharmonic with a vision to uplift and unify. by Donna Ison | photos courtesy Lexington Philharmonic “Music can heal the wounds which medicine cannot touch.” - Dr. Debasish Mridha, Physician/Philosopher/Poet er the challenges of the past year, our collective soul is due for a balm. s Interim rtistic dvisor for the Lexington hilharmonic orchestra, elly orcoran is committed to harnessing and sharing music s curative properties. “ irst and foremost, our mission is to create meaningful artistic experiences for the community and for the musicians. nd, we want those experiences to provide oy and healing and meaning and value and connection for the community,” orcoran says, “I also want to make sure we re supporting the musicians of the orchestra and allowing them to have opportunities to share their artistic talents.” efore stepping in to guide Lex hil in this new position which was created specifically to address the unique needs of the organi ation during this time orcoran spent nine seasons conducting the ashville ymphony in ashville, ennessee as both associate conductor and director of the symphony chorus. rior, she founded the ashville hilharmonic rchestra and continues to serve on the board. In addition, orcoran has acted as a guest conductor for many ma or orchestras both around the . . and abroad and was named “ est lassical onductor” in by Nashville Scene. f taking on this role, at this time, orcoran says, “I will be o ering vision and guidance for all the artistic planning and vision for the orchestra. I think this is an opportunity to try new things and try new venues and be responsive to the ever changing dynamic of the moment. I think it provides an opportunity for new experiences and

March 2021 |


long with her devotion to equity, orcoran holds a passion for education. ith a bachelor s from oston onservatory in voice performance and a masters from Indiana University in instrumental conducting, Corcoran is currently pursuing a Master’s in Public ealth from the niversity of labama irmingham. ith Lex hil, she is especially excited to bring STEAM (Science Technology Engineering rts Mathematics programming to students through concerts this spring. ccording to orcoran, “ e re looking at things like fractions and the scientific method and engineering design and applying that to musical instruments and our repertoire.” o what can we expect from Lex hil in the near future orcoran states, “ e have virtual content for March and pril. ome will feature interviews with our musicians. e ll do co ee hours where we ll connect with the community, and open mic performances where you ll get to hear musicians playing from chamber repertoires. f course, we re planning LexPhil in Your Neighborhood performances as well, so there will be a number of outdoor events coming as the weather warms.” Corcoran feels the pandemic has reminded us of how integral the arts are to our wellbeing. he states, “I think it has validated the important role that art and music play in all our lives. That we really need this artistic connection. I think that has been validated during this moment.” n that note, she encourages the community to support the arts through the simple, but powerful act of donating “ o give a donation is a significant act. ot only does it help financially, but it demonstrates that you care and you re thinking about the organi ation and you value it and care about its sustainability. That is a huge thing.”


TOPS in Lexington | March 2021


To include more diversity in programming, LexPhil is partnering with local hip hop/ rap artist evine arama. orcoran says, “ e are working with evine on a collaborative program, which we hope to do at the Loudoun House in late spring. I love collaborative partnerships. e have en oyed talking about hip hop culture and how that connects to classical music and the threads of similarity and of di erence, of course. ur hope is to really build unity through the lens of these diverse genres and how they can work together.”

n ra m

In an actionable step toward by achieving this, Lex Phil has formed an I Inclusivity iversity quity ccessibility task force. ccording to orcoran “ very aspect of arts organi ations and orchestral organi ations, particularly need to be looked at in terms of how are these systems are potentially perpetuating inequality. verything we do, whether it’s the repertoire, the programming, who is on stage, the venues, who we’re partnering with, the sta , the board, policies in all of these facets, we need to look to see how are they re ecting these values of equity and inclusion.”



Alongside the restorative capabilities of music, Corcoran recognizes it’s ability to unify and bring about change. She has a career-long commitment to equity, which runs through the scope of her work. he explains, “It is day to day work. It is an ongoing and long term commitment and has to be a part of everything that you do as an organization—that is how I ve tried to approach my commitment to building equity in the work that I do.”



creative possibilities.” In addition to position with LexPhil, Corcoran will continue on as a music faculty member at Middle Tennessee State University and artistic director of the contemporary music ensemble, Intersection.


Lexington Urban League Young Professionals According to the Lexington Urban League, “Our goal is to support professional development while advocating for diversity, social and economic equality.” ne of the most powerful ways they are a ecting that change in our community is through the Lexington Urban League Young rofessionals. y encouraging motivated, ambitious young professionals of central Kentucky, this organization is changing the faces of success throughout our region. uilding networking connections for young professionals can be an uphill battle without an active mentor presence. The L L seeks to forge links between local professionals and the resources they need to succeed. t the same time, the L L is amplifying their voices as leaders in their communities and empowering them to make an impact where they are. Two important facets of the Urban League’s work are service and activism. The L L incorporates service pro ects into many of their networking events, allowing members to connect to their communities further. They also are encouraged to engage in civic aspects of our city. Their programs address everything from the needs of local students to I I awareness. isit ypinlex on Facebook to learn more about some of the service and civic events they are participating in around town. o that end, members are encouraged to serve on one of five empowerment committees. oing so allows each member to have a voice and help fulfill the chapter s strategic goals. The five empowerment teams are focused on ducation and outh mpowerment, conomic mpowerment, ealth and uality of Life mpowerment, ivic ngagement and Leadership mpowerment and ivil ights and acial ustice mpowerment. The national rban League has more than young professional chapters across the nited tates. This means the next generation of leaders is making a di erence, contributing to the progress of achieving equality and developing as professionals and leaders every day. Through the L L organi ation, the Lexington rban League is continuing its mission “ mpowering ommunities. hanging Lives.” o learn more about the L L , visit or photos courtesy of ypinlex Facebook page

March 2021 |



Mike Cyrus i p oto ap to a . ut

a no ot guts.

Here he shares his cancer journey and the incredible power of community support. photo by Allison Cyrus My name is Mike Cyrus. I know only one speed, and that is go go go pedal to the oor. ever stop working. As a professional photographer, if I’m not shooting weddings, senior photos, family photos, or headshots, then it is professional sports college, L, even the ML . They say do what you love, and I am living the dream every day. I was living go go go until one day while celebrating at a local restaurant with my business partner, Chris Marshall, I began to regurgitate for no reason. This happened a few more times in the next coming days. I reached out to a good friend, r. rian mith. e felt I might have an issue in my stomach, thinking maybe an issue with my gallbladder. He sent me to see a gastrula specialist named Dr. Woolfolk on August 18th, the day that changed my whole life. I was just getting home when the call came in. My daughter was with me, and I had the doctor on speaker, thinking he was going to tell me I had a gallbladder problem or an ulcer. He explained to me that in fact, I had stomach cancer; it was in the lining along with a mass on my stomach.


TOPS in Lexington | March 2021

I felt myself almost having an out-of-body experience, thinking this was a mistake or he called the wrong person. I looked at my daughter and saw the shock on her face. I thought to myself, “I have to be strong, I have to beat this; I have three daughters and a wife. I will not let this be how they remember me. They will see me grow old, I will see my grandchildren, and this will not be the end, but just a challenge—a test!” s I hung up the phone with r. oolfolk, I said, “This is not a problem. I WILL BEAT THIS WITH GOD’S HELP.” illed with a sense of peace and strength, knowing that I will fight this with everything I have... ut I knew that first, I had to tell my wife. he is a sweet lady that holds her heart on her sleeve. I knew telling her, I would have to be so and strong for her. I ust told her point blank, didn t pull any punches “ aby, I have stomach cancer.” he thought I was mistaken or playing a silly game. My serious look told the real story. I was not kidding or playing. he quickly said, “We will beat this.” ast forward a couple months. I m now at one of the best cancer teams in the world The Markey ancer enter here in Lexington, y has become the gold standard in cancer care. My doctor, r. Pendalai, has become a strong friend in my world. “There is no saving your stomach; it will have to be fully removed.” I was thinking something like gastric bypass. o. This is literally a total removal. otal removal means there is nothing from my esophagus to my small intestine. I ll never eat a normal meal again. o more sugar, steak, hamburgers, pizza, or tacos. I am relegated to small handful meals every 2 hours from now on. er two months of very strong chemotherapy, the time to have my stomach removed was coming. I spent time enjoying my last days of eating normally while starting the process of training my body for the new life that was coming. December 15th was the day of my stomach removal. People asked if I was scared or nervous. f course, but the one thing I didn t feel was alone. ith all the prayers coming in over the months from family, friends, all the support from the updates on Facebook, I knew I was in great hands. I would not only survive the surgery, but champion it.

“What does the future hold, because we aren’t on hold anymore.”

The day a er surgery, I was in pain like nothing I ve ever felt before in my life. I spent so much time looking at the ceiling, ust be ing for the pain to be over. My wife could see the agoni ing pain I was in, and she began making posts on my status. wo thousand people sending me love motivated me to push even harder to get better. I was in extreme pain, but my smile was much bi er than the pain. The next day, I was up on my feet and walking up and down the hallway. Like I said I only know one speed... go go go.

I have a company that my business partner and I have put too much time and e ort into building. I have a family and friends that count on me. And, most importantly, I want my daughters to see that anything can be overcome. I had so many prayers going up, cancer was not even a thought in my head anymore. ll I could think about for the first time since the ourney started was, “what does the future hold, because we aren’t on hold anymore.” Looking toward the future has given me more hope than you can imagine. Because of my cancer, I now take time out to appreciate the little things we take for granted every day. Things like holding my wife s hand and looking into my kids eyes each day is my whole world. I thank od now for every minute I get to spend with them. The road to recovery will be long but with od s help and the close friends that push and support me every day, I know this will be a walk in the park. I thank everyone that has taken the time to send even just the simplest message, email, text, or comment. I may have gotten medicine and surgery to fix me, but it was this support that made it possible for me to smile each day and say, “I will beat this.” •

March 2021 |


Our licensed KORT therapists have the clinical expertise to treat your conditions, with three convenient options:



TOPS in Lexington | March 2021


Hallie Lee

Local Author of Paint Me Fearless Shares Her Journey My Mama “Someday it will happen,” she said over and over, like a mantra. Her words, always delivered with certainty and faith, sometimes made me think she could make my dreams come true through sheer will alone. voracious reader, and a gi ed storyteller, my mom introduced me to books as a kid. She’d share lively, animated stories about the novels she read, and could weave a tale about Henry VIII that would impress even the most fervent Wolf Hall fan. I knew at an early age I wanted to be a writer. Possibly because I sought my mama’s approval, but ultimately because I loved the idea of evoking that kind of emotion in people. Naturally, my mom encouraged my passion. Armed with an IBM typewriter, and fueled by her careful and constructive criticism, I began submitting stories to any magazine that accepted unsolicited manuscripts. With every small victory she cheered, and with every rejection she reminded me that my someday would eventually come. She

maintained that conviction, even when my journey took me far away from her… from Small Town, Louisiana to Santa Fe, New Mexico. anta e is where I really honed my writing skills. The exposure to such a creative movie making community gave me the opportunity to attend many writing conferences and classes. As my screenplays were recognized with placements and awards in various contests, I had the chance to take a course with Emmy Award winning screenwriter Kirk Ellis. Beyond that, producer Ronnie Clemmer ( eague of Their wn) saw something in me he wanted to mentor. His tutelage and insight made me a better, more mature writer. “ new i ,” Mama insisted with each new stage in my growth. “ ou’ve got what it a es. ust don’t give u .” ut in , my life changed with two significant events. My husband and I moved to Lexington, Kentucky. And my mama, my bi est advocate, and my most enthusiastic champion, passed away.

March 2021 |


My Faith I didn t write for two years a er my mom died. I had plenty of excuses. rying to settle into a new state. rying to support my husband in his new ob. rying to acquire a taste for horses and bourbon. I succeeded in the first, but not the latter. inally, feeling bere when our daughter returned to aylor a er spending the summer in Lexington, I thought another seat at the keyboard might help. If nothing else, writing might assuage the loneliness. onestly, it wasn t a great screenplay, but what really crushed me, was typing upon completion and reali ing my mama would never read it. To heck with someday, I decided. Time to quit the silly dreams and get on with my life. ometime a er tossing in the towel, we visited outhland hristian hurch in icholasville. ot to sound clich , but becoming a member of the outhland community turned out to be the catalyst to my eventual healing. I didn t make an immediate, mad dash to my computer a erward, nor did my grief suddenly vanish, but what did happen was a steady, deep growth in my faith, nurtured every unday by an inspirational teaching from a refreshing, relatable pastor. uite simply, this church, these pastors, and this community, rekindled my sense of hope. od s timing truly is divine, because ust when I needed it the most, I began to feel less afraid, less alone, and less heartbroken. I also grew more courageous, more optimistic, and more... fearless.


inally, I felt strong enough to take another seat at the keyboard. o try one last time. Paint Me Fearless is the result. nd with it, The hady ully eries was born. urns out my mama was right and my someday was at hand.

My Hope The headline on my press release reads “ ovelist explores themes of aith & Lies etrayal & edemption and the nfathomable alue of riendship hen verything alls part.” hile humbled by my publisher s description of my work, I think the theme of Paint Me Fearless is as old as time. It s about our need for acceptance. ur yearning for approval. hy do we fall short hy aren t we enough The protagonists in the story, esi and obin, carry their insecurities into adulthood both those they inherited and the ones they nurtured and bloomed all by themselves. The insidious e ect of self condemnation shapes their decisions, alters their lives, and eventually, pits them against one another. My hope is that esi and obin s ourney inspires readers, and that they come away with the strength to overcome the lies the devil tells them about themselves. ear, shame, and regret can steal our lives, and my bi est triumph would be for readers to get to the last page and exclaim, “ o more ” •


TOPS in Lexington | March 2021

It’s the spring before high school and Desiree and Robin have little in common. Desi, having moved to Shady Gully from Albuquerque, is miserable as she tries to adjust to small town life, while Robin, forever doomed at the “bottom of the popularity pyramid” is terrified she’ll never measure up. When Desi is introduced in class, Robin hates her on sight, but fate draws these two alienated girls to one another, and together they overcome mean girls, weight hang-ups, and disturbing family dynamics. Their bond stands the test of time, even as their paths diverge and they raise families of their own, but when a shocking betrayal ignites old insecurities, the layers of their friendship begin to unravel. As they confront the lies that ravaged their lives, they finally learn that the world’s prizes— beauty, recognition, and approval—are fleeting. And with that truth they find the freedom to live unashamed. And unafraid. HALLIELEE.COM



Place Order +


Earn BHG

Faster Ordering


Rodney Weaver


Order History

Ryan Cooper Lexington

Steve Brinson Nicholasville

Let us help guide you in the right direction!

$ Personalized Favorites +




LEXINGTON | 859.268.2410 Beaumont Circle | 997 Governors Ln

NICHOLASVILLE | 859.424.4180 Harrodsburg Rd | 104 Springdale Dr

March 2021 |


Kyra Elzy inspirations:

a former member of uk’s women’s coaching staff returns to take the reins by larry vaught

“[Matthew Mitchell] sends me text messages. We talk. I am always looking to him for guidance. If I ask for advice, he gives it. He mainly just offers a lot of prayer and encouragement.” 38

photo courtesy UK Athletics She knew there would be surprises “when she moved over one season,” but Kyra Elzy credits an amazing staff from keeping her from being overwhelmed with her promotion from assistant coach to head coach at Kentucky. Matthew Mitchell, the winning head coach in Kentucky women’s basketball history, resigned in November, just before the season started. Elzy was named the interim coach and then the head coach. One of her unofficial advisors during her first season as head coach has been Mitchell. “He sends me text messages. We talk. I am always looking to him for guidance,” Elzy said. “If I ask for advice, he gives it. He mainly just offers a lot of prayer and encouragement. He tells me mainly just not to put pressure on myself. Don’t look ahead and be true to who I am. Lead in a manner to make sure kids believe in themselves and don’t overanalyze things.” Kentucky players certainly bought into Elzy’s leadership immediately. She

TOPS in Lexington | March 2021

by Larry

had been Tennessee’s associate head coach since the 2016-17 season. Prior to that, she had been an assistant coach at UK. “I think being an assistant coach here already helped my transition. I had helped recruit these players, and they had relationships with me,” Elzy said. “But everyone here is so invested in Kentucky and loves Kentucky basketball so much.” Fans have embraced Elzy just as much as her players. She thinks the way her team plays makes it easy for fans to enjoy the players. “We play an exciting brand of basketball. We are up-tempo. We play hard defensively,” the Kentucky coach said. “They have a lot of personality. It might be KeKe [McKinney] dancing. Robyn [Benton] is so enthusiastic and gets the crowd into games. Our players really engage with the community.” Earlier this season, Kentucky Children’s Hospital patients had a chance to do game introductions for UK players. Rhyne Howard, the team’s star player, did a Zoom call with Ellie Hurley, a 9-yearold who was first diagnosed with leukemia at age 3. “Our players loved having those kids do that for us,” Elzy said. “That’s what I love about this team. They want to give of themselves. Those young kids were so excited to meet our players and engage with them. We went into it wanting to make their day, but those young kids inspired our players instead.”

Elzy has found herself inspiring others in an unexpected way as a fashion trendsetter. Her game day attire has drawn national attention. “Now Coach Mitchell was the best dressed on the sideline for sure,” Elzy said. “I do not dress any different now than I normally have. I guess I am just getting more noticed because I am standing up [on the floor]. I am thankful for that and for getting all the tweets and text messages [about those outfits]. But it’s not any different from past years. I’m just glad people watching a very talented basketball team just happen to get to see me, too.” Elzy appreciates the sacrifices her players have made this season. They have assigned seats when they travel. No eating on the plane or bus. Each player has her assigned room, and players can not be in each other’s rooms. “That takes some of the fun out of it, but what I love about this team is that they know the sacrifices they must make in order to hit the floor,” the coach said. “Our team chemistry is undeniable. We knew we had to resilient, be tough, stay together. “We want to earn everything we get, but there is something about Big Blue Nation and the Blue Magic that comes with it. We want people to be part of that with us and keep the magic going. That’s what we are about.” •

Larry Vaught

photo by Vicky Graff

photo by Vicky Graff

March 2021 |






PARTNER WITH US! 859.977.5846

If you’re itching to get gardening but impatiently waiting for winter to finally clear out of entucky, you re in luck There s plenty to do this month to get your garden ready for warmer growing days ahead.

Divide and Conquer our perennials spread underground during their growing season. March is a great time to ensure that they re growing where you want them. nce the ground has fully thawed, use a spade to li the clumps, then break them up with a knife my mom uses a hicago utlery steak knife, but I promise they sell ones ust for gardening. few perennials, like peonies and irises, prefer to be divided in early sum mer. Lilies prefer to be moved in early ctober. ome plants are ust so picky

Spring Cleanup If you re anything like me, your garden beds are a total mess by March. ead leaves and half composted mulch get packed down by winter weath er, making it impossible for new growth to poke through. ll that gross, neglected mess can also be a breeding ground for mushrooms and mold when warmer weather hits. rim away any dead foliage you may or may not have ignored back in ovember. ake leaves and mulch back and let the ground breathe for a bit. ou can mulch safely when the soil has soaked up some sunshine and warmed up, probably in mid pril.

g n i r p S g n i n a e Clin the Garden by Amanda Harper

A few other spring cleaning “honey do” tasks for you: •

Give ornamental grasses a haircut.

Clean out birdhouses.

Prune dead and damaged branches.

Take inventory in your gardening shed.

Check for frost damage on concrete and path stones.

Cut back diseased or damaged roses.

If you want your soil tested, send a sample in now.

Find out what shrubs or berry plants may be appropriate to plant right now.

Hot Tip! If you plan on growing cool season crops such as kale, peas, radishes, turnips or spinach outdoors, try warming your soil over your bed with L plastic sheeting about three weeks before you decide to start planting. eigh it down with rocks or bricks. ou can leave the plastic over the bed until seedlings grow to an inch, or when weather starts to warm up.

March 2021 |


Storied and

SOUTHERN How one design team couple helped bring a historic property into the 21st century. by Taylor Riley | photos by Tim Furlong, Jr.


TOPS in Lexington | March 2021


might think of Jason Black, owner of Artisan Signature Homes, and wife Gretchen as one of those TV design couples; their home renovation videos show the process of remodeling the ornate Edgewood Estate in Louisville. The home, built in the 1800s, received a magnificently modern makeover by the husband and wife design duo. Now the couple is looking back at the home they lived in and loved. Edgewood, the home where former Bellarmine University President Joseph McGowan lived for 20 years, was listed on the market in 2017 for just under $3M. According to Louisville Business First, the Italianate home was donated to Bellarmine in 1997 by now-retired heart surgeon Dr. Allan Lansing and his wife, Donna; it’s been used to host Derby parties, events for the university, and other storied shindigs for decades. When the Black family took over in 2018, they knew bringing it into the 21st Century was going to be a tough task. They began a YouTube channel, “Building a Better South,” to document the eight-month process. “Gretchen and I have always built and designed new homes, so we wanted to put our touch on a historic home,” Jason says. In 1850, the home wasn’t designed for how busy families currently live, Jason explains, so they focused their efforts on the kitchen and main living area, opening it up so they had the functionality of a family room. The outside of the home was revamped with touches from the couple, including Chippendale railing around the front porch. They added 10-foot-tall white doors to fall in line with other historic details, welcoming visitors into the 5-bedroom, 5-full-bath, 2-halfbath, 8,000-plus-square-foot-home.

Inside, a local artist hand-painted a mural of Gretchen’s favorite flowers in the entryway, leading up to the original banister the couple refinished with brass details.


Sophistication WALK-IN CLOSET


Call (859) 277-0277 for a free Virtual or In-Home Design Consultation or visit us online at 246 Walton Avenue, Lexington, KY 40502 the art of organization ©2021 Closet Factory. All rights reserved.

March 2021 |


The formal 16-seat dining room was split into two, book-ending a bright, white and navy sitting room with an 80-inch hidden television for family movie nights. Upgraded fireplaces with a clean, white marble surround bring warmth to the main living area. The large butler’s kitchen was made into a working pantry, and the kitchen was opened up to look out to the green lot with a majestic 300-plus-year-old oak tree. Jason and Gretchen decided on a crisp navy “decorative and clean” aesthetic with five countertop-to-ceiling windows and nearby access to a 15-foot-by-40-foot screened porch. The kitchen was the couple’s favorite space to renovate, with its white and gold-veined marble countertop and island, 48-inch gold range, and matte white Café Appliances.

“We made the house feel like home.” March 2021 |



TOPS in Lexington | March 2021

Traveling upstairs, the couple decided to remove a long access hallway, with a staircase beginning in the kitchen, to create an owner’s suite that includes a bath lit by the natural brightness of windows. They also created a dressing room, and closet space. The owner’s bedroom was originally too large for the couple, who like a cozier feel, so they cut the size in half and created an intricately-trimmed wall with a secret door to the master bath, fitted with a larger-format marble heated floor. The third floor once held three bedrooms, but the couple ultimately decided to remove two bedrooms, creating a more intimate space. Edgewood has a similar style throughout, which Gretchen humorously calls “granny chic.” Oak flooring was installed throughout. The interior design utilizes various shades of blue for a cohesive signature style. Custom panels line the home, creating a “timeless” look that “made it feel authentic to the time,” says Jason.

Gretchen and Jason Black enjoyed the eight-month process it took to remodel the home. “We made the house feel like home,” Jason says. To see the renovation videos, find Building a Better South on YouTube. This home is currently listed for sale. Contact: Jon Mand & Associates, Sotheby’s International Realty, at 502-417-2837 for more information.

Outdoor Living. Elevated.

Summer Classics | Brown Jordan | Kingsley-Bate | Lane Venture Ke ntucky ’s d e sti n atio n fo r c re ati n g b e autif ul s p ac e s to sh a re w ith f rie n d s a n d fa mily fo r o v e r 2 0 y e a rs . No w o ffe ri n g d el iv e r y s e r v ic e to L e x i n gto n . 3 9 0 5 C H E N O W E T H S Q UA R E


Leading More Clearly Through their Police Immersion Program, the Lexington Police Department is connecting to young people in our community. BY PETER CHAWAGA | PHOTOS COURTESY OFFICER JEROME BEAN

“I think the program is powerful for the simple fact that we let the youth have a voice about issues that they are seeing."


TOPS in Lexington | March 2021

In 2016,

now-retired Lexington Police Department Officer Jeffrey Jones felt compelled to go beyond the usual responsibilities called for by his badge. He wanted to help bridge gaps between the work that he and his fellow officers were doing and the ways that this work was being perceived by members of the community, particularly young members. He contacted Officer Jerome Bean with his idea and on May 14, 2017, they conducted the first-ever Lexington Police Department Immersion Program event at the training academy on Fourth Street. Since then, the program has reached at least 50 local young people of different backgrounds and ethnicities and demonstrated to them that the Lexington Police Department is their police department. “The primary objective is to be transparent, for the youth to see the inner-workings of the police department and the training, policies and procedures firsthand,” Bean explained. “We want them to have a good understanding of how things work within their police department… As you can see, I used the words ‘their police department.’ What I meant by that is, at the end of the day, the police department works for the community and if we lose the trust of the community, it becomes a moot point for law enforcement.” The program receives yearly grant funds through Lexington’s Citizens Police Academy Alumni Association, a non-profit that has partnered with the Lexington Police Department to foster community education and trust since 1997. Officer Bean, along with two additional officers who staff the program and a handful of others who assist in given classes, meet with students from Lexington’s Tates Creek and Paul Laurence Dunbar high schools. Each class meets once a month for four months and the program concludes with a graduation ceremony during which each participant is presented with a certificate of completion. “A typical session of the Police Immersion Program begins c recruit academy does,” Bean said. “First, they would learn line formation along with other basic drill and ceremony. Then, that would be followed by classroom instruction, which is similar to what recruit officers would receive… After classroom instruction, the youth participate in real-life scenarios.” But this program does not merely immerse young people in the experience of an officer in training. It offers them an officer’s actual perspective on policing, something that can be difficult to gain otherwise and which can prove invaluable in future interactions with the police department.

incident that occurs in their respective neighborhoods that involves the police, the youth have the perception that the police will try and hide something or ‘take care of their own,’” explained Bean. “That is where a program like this will bridge that gap. So that when something does happen, they can also serve as the voice of the department when others do not understand why certain things are taking place. They can also help us educate the community.” The program is a collaboration with Partners For Youth’s Neighborhood Youth Council. As a Lexington-based nonprofit, Partners For Youth provides grant support, distributes educational scholarships and hosts empowerment programs to support the development of the area’s young people and prevent juvenile delinquency. It was founded by Mayor Pam Miller in the wake of a fatal 1994 shooting of a Black teenager at the BluegrassAspendale public housing project, which led to downtown protests and outcry about the perceived gap between Lexington’s vulnerable populations and the department tasked with policing them. It’s hard to imagine a more effective way of reconciling that gap than the Police Immersion Program. Participants have the chance to speak with officers and detectives and ask the types of questions that they normally wouldn’t be able to if they encountered them at a crime scene or other neighborhood incident. They also see the program’s officers preparing lunch for them, providing snacks and drinks, even giving out t-shirts. And, critically, it isn’t a onesided exchange; the participants have the chance to offer their own viewpoints and feedback directly to the instructing officers. This leads to insights that the department values highly. “I think the program is powerful for the simple fact that we let the youth have a voice about issues that they are seeing,” Bean expressed. “Then, in a collaborative effort, maybe we can come up with some solvable solutions to some issues that are going on in their neighborhoods. I like to think about it as if they are taking ownership of their communities. I can’t say even if one of these young people will become a police officer, but I do know this for sure: Those young men and women are the future and, in some shape, form or fashion, they will have a voice and an impact on the future of their communities, no matter where they reside — be it here in Lexington, or elsewhere.” By creating this dialogue with Lexington’s young people, these programs give Lexington Police Department officers an avenue for their singular and much-needed leadership to reach an otherwise distant population. It allows them to lead our youth with clarity on both sides.

“When there is a critical

March 2021 |


At Home DIY

This wild winter has us READY for spring! As a teacher, I’ve enjoyed the extra days at home with my family, but we also cannot wait to get outside! Until then, we’ll keep wishing and fill our days with more indoor fun! There probably isn’t a day that goes by that we don’t get some type of play dough out at our house. I’ve found a recipe we love that’s so easy to make! St. Patrick’s Day is also right around the corner, so I’m sharing a fun little activity we did last March. Lastly, whether there’s snow on the ground or not...I can almost promise we’ll be decorated for Easter and Spring at our house before February is over! The boys and I made a sweet little handprint garland I plan to hang this year. Enjoy!

Homemade Play Dough

A Little Bit of Spring Fever


We’ve been gifted several play dough kits that we LOVE but have started making some of our own. My boys could play for hours with them! We’ve even made a few kits as birthday gifts- we just made a Toy Story kit for our 2 year old cousin. We filled it with red, yellow, and blue dough, Toy Story figurines, toy soldiers, letter blocks, a mini slinky, pom poms, and some pipe cleaners. My boys loved that they got to take part in making their cousin’s gift, and that they got the leftover dough and pieces. Ha!

Color Hunt Last March we spent St. Patrick’s Day at home...we had literally just started quarantining with the pandemic and I wanted the day to be fun for everyone. We used some dot stickers (our favorite) to make a shamrock and then went on a color scavenger hunt for all things GREEN! This one is perfect for littles. It’s such a simple activity, it’s fun,’s free!

TOPS in Lexington | March 2021

DIY with Kids


Handprint Carrot Garland I love a good handprint craft and these were so simple! I let the boys paint a big sheet of white paper with orange paint. Then, we traced their hands onto green construction paper. Once their paint dried, we cut the orange paper into carrots, glued their handprints on top, and added string to make the garland! It’ll be something I get out each year as I decorate for spring!

JESSI TURNER Fruitful Phases Blog @fruitfulphases

March 2021 |


STORE HOURS: Tuesday - Friday 10AM - 6PM Saturday 10AM - 4PM Sunday & Monday - Closed

In Hamburg behind Forcht Bank 2721 Old Rosebud Road 859.264.0923 |


TOPS in Lexington | March 2021

Today’s home office has grown into the true athome oasis. A quiet space. A “me” room. A place where you can feel like you can conquer the world with a beautifully sleek desk and the perfect matching stationery. If you’re one of those work-from-home mamas and papas and you’re in need of an office refresh, here’s some inspiration to get you started. Photo via Headed Somewhere Blog

March 2021 |


Photo via Brighten Made

Photo via IKEA

A beautiful home office can also be functional. Try incorporating a walllength desk to give you extra tabletop space for working and storage. Or maybe you find a desk with built in storage drawers which is always a win-win!

Linnmon Alex Table | Available at IKEA Photo via HGTV


TOPS in Lexington | March 2021

Photo via Haarkon

Good ol’ fashioned cube storage is the perfect foundation for a trendy yet organized space. You can find these at Walmart, Target or even Amazon. Utilize them for both books and files. Storage bins can offer a cleaner look and you can even save a few for an adorable picture of your family. When combined, you’ve got a perfectly decorated and organized office. Speaking of organization, there are endless amounts of trendy tools and stationery to help keep you on task and looking good at the same time. Invest in things like clipboards, rose gold or colored paper clips, file storage, desk calendars and more. Matte Gray Metal Wall Clock | World Market Agate Bookends | West Elm

The Everygirl 2021 Planner | Target

Blush Storage Set | Blue Monaco

Marble Clipboard | Modern Woman

Computer Keyboard Rack | MShop by Mielygraphy

March 2021 |

Rose Gold Binder Clips | Plain Chicly


Photo via

Comfort is key when creating a space that you’ll be spending a lot of time in. No matter how stressful your days may get, you’ll want to feel a sense of comfort and relaxation in your home office. You can add some live plants for warmth and a cozy rug, but It all starts with the perfect chair! It is possible to find a trendy, yet comfortable office chair and we’ve picked out some favorites!

Flanigan Channel Task Chair | Joss & Main

Louise Task Chair by Kelly Clarkson Home | Wayfair

Aeron Chair | Herman Miller

Hamilton Leather Office Chair | Art Van Furniture


TOPS in Lexington | March 2021

er in g l Wal lc ov zo | To ta ed Te rraz

Orange Grove | Anthropo logie

ol or Mul ti -C G ai ne s Jo an na Hom e by O liv e Br

an ch Ch


ag no lia co al | M

Boh o Floral | Mar

zipa n Day s

Photo via Next Luxury

What’s the best way to add that finishing touch to your home office space? A gorgeous accent wall! Peel and stick wallpaper has become a huge trend and we can see why! Pick a pattern and just stick it on. Change your mind? Simply peel it off and switch it up! Don’t be afraid to go bold to really transform this space to be “your” space!

March 2021 |




That’s how much money is WASTED each year on meetings that executives and middle management agree were unproductive failures. DON’T LET THAT BE YOU! 64

TOPS in Lexington | March 2021


Leading a Meeting We have all attended meetings that seem to go and on with no apparent end in sight. In your own company, you have probably experienced some of the worst examples... from meetings that continued long a er their productive purpose had ended to “quick catch ups” that devolved into two hour long chaos. It really is the mark of an undisciplined organi ation to tie up their people’s time in unproductive or continual meetings. But, there are always going to be times when the only way to build a consensus or foster connection is through group interaction. Below are seven basic pointers of meeting management that will ensure your group is making the most use of your organi ation s time when it is necessary to meet.

PREPARE EVERYONE Distribute the meeting agenda, with supporting documents, before the meeting occurs. If people have not read that information before the meeting, you may need to defer any action for a future meeting. Editor’s Note: At TOPS, the agenda lives on a shared oogle oc that everyone can access before or a er —the meeting. Don’t ask us for any other tips regarding meetings: we’re reading this article and a ing notes ourselves

CONSENT AGENDA tili ing a Consent Agenda is a mechanism to avoid wasting time on routine or trivial items basically, it is a list of regular, low impact business items that aren t likely to need discussion. tate in the distributed agenda that issues on the Consent Agenda will be approved without any discussion unless a particular item is brought up by a committee member.


ORDER! Using Robert’s Rules of Order (a form of parliamentary procedure) will save you considerable time for formal meetings—such as required annual meetings or oard of irector s meetings where o cial minutes need to be maintained. or less formal organ ations, it may be helpful to write your own rules of order to help give your meetings some structure.

GET INPUT If there are controversial items on the agenda, connect with key in uencers before the meeting to know where they stand on an issue. e sure that you know where your key o ce leaders stand on any vote or discussion so there are no surprises.

SMART EXIT Know when the meeting is over. ome people will always want to stay around and talk. Make sure you have clearly ad ourned the meeting beforehand so that others may leave if they prefer. This may seem like more structure and standardi ation than is necessary for your business, but we promise: following these seven guidelines will pay dividends in the long run by maximi ing your most valuable resource your peoples time. unning a successful meeting is one measure of an organi ation s e ciency. ecause if you can t run your own meeting e ciently, what does that say about how well the rest of your organization is functioning?





.9 9 13

Et s y : G et Pin



Any meeting lasting longer than 60 minutes has diminishing returns because most people’s attention span is no longer than that (including mine.)

i nt




Etsy: AllinThePr

Al w a y sF



et time limits for each agenda item. If discussion goes on longer than the allotted time, it should be abled for another time. It is

crucial to identify who will lead the discussion on each item.

When all else fails... treat yourself! March 2021 |



TOPS in Lexington | March 2021

stories by Donna Ison // photos by Keni Parks, Christopher Michael Images and Conrhod Zonio special thanks to: The Apiary, The Origin Hotel, Amtek and Norwalk Furniture & Design

Leaders in

FINANCE TOPS in Lexington | Sponsored Content


TOPS Leader in

RETIREMENT PLANNING Meridian Wealth Management, LLC ANDREW NORDEN, JACOB TAMME + SUZANNE POWELL 250 W. Main Street, Ste. 3150, Lexington //

Meridian is a continuous leader in the field of financial advising and wealth management. “Leadership is who we are,” vice president and advisor, Suzanne Powell, said. “It is intrinsic to all the advisors and staff at Meridian Wealth Management.” In the 11 years since Greg Couch founded Meridian, the company has experienced booming growth. While the flagship office remains in the heart of downtown Lexington, Meridian Wealth Management now serves families and organizations throughout the U.S, with additional locations in Florida and Arizona. The firm is home to 22 wealth management advisors and 9 support staff members, serving more than 900 client families across the country. Along with a commitment to leadership, Meridian’s team aims to leverage the experiences of their advisors to assist a wide variety of clients. “The strength of Meridian lies within the diverse backgrounds and experiences of our advisors and staff,” advisor Andrew Norden said. “Our people are truly our greatest asset.” Sports & Entertainment Division Director, Jacob Tamme, uses his past experiences as a professional athlete to serve current athletes and entertainers. “Working with athletes is a fantastic challenge and a ton of fun,” Tamme said. “Each client situation is different but there is still carryover in the investment and planning principles we use with our athletes and those we use with business owners and retirees. The opportunity to add value to each of these client groups and give them piece of mind about their finances is why I am an advisor.” The forward-thinkers at Meridian focus on the changing needs of individuals and create services to fill those voids. Seeing a demand in the market for aging baby boomers to receive transparent, unbiased advice, Powell stepped up to lead Meridian’s office in The Villages in Florida—which caters to clients 55 and up, who need the peace of mind that comes from working with a skilled fiduciary advisor. With approximately $1.34 billion in assets under management, the Meridian advisors provide comprehensive fiduciary advice and objective guidance for clients that range from professional athletes and retirees to business owners and institutions. As financial advisors, the Meridian team strives to serve not only their clients, but the communities where they live and work. They believe a dedication to service through mentorships, coaching and fundraising are just as important as the advising they do in a business setting. In the end, the top priority is always the client. Powell adds, “We love that our clients in Lexington, around the U.S. and the world, are living their best lives because of the planning and guidance that we bring to every advisory client relationship.” Advisory services offered through Meridian Wealth Management LLC a Registered Investment Advisor



TOPS Leader in

COMMUNITY BANKING Community Trust Bank, Inc CATHY TAYLOR 100 East Vine Street, Lexington

For Cathy Taylor, vice president and market senior loan officer, and the rest of the team at Community Trust Bank, it’s all about the people. Taylor says, “Whether it’s the customers you serve, the people you work with, or the lasting relationships you build, people make the difference.” Though Community Trust now has 79 locations in Kentucky, West Virginia, and Tennessee, at its heart, it is still a true community bank. Taylor explains, “We are local people making local decisions while being a vital part of the community. We work here, volunteer here, live here, raise our families here...we care about the communities we serve, and we give back.” On being a leader in her industry, Taylor says, “I am motivated by helping others perform to their best abilities and achieve their goals. My main objective as a leader is to make a difference, whether it’s mentoring an employee or guiding a new business customer.”


TOPS Leader in

SPECIAL NEEDS TRUSTS Community Trust Wealth & Trust Management BOB STADELMAN 100 East Vine Street, Ste.501, Lexington

Bob Stadelman, Senior Vice President at Community Wealth and Trust Management, is honored that families trust his team with their financial futures. He says, “We are privileged to serve as the stewards of our clients’ legacies. In my role as Director of Fiduciary Services, I guide our team in the disciplined and thoughtful administration of family trusts. I am especially proud of our ability to offer Special Needs Trusts to families with disabled loved ones.” Stadelman adds, “We know that each family and each person is unique. Special Needs Trusts enrich the quality of life of the beneficiary while protecting eligibility for public assistance programs. And we are committed to the highest standard of care and personal attention in our relationship with you and your family.” Headquartered in Lexington with locations in Ashland, Pikeville, and LaFollette, Tennessee, Community Trust Wealth &Trust Management is a business unit of Community Trust and Investment Company. Says Stadelman, “We are one of the most reputable trust companies in Kentucky with assets under management of over $2.8 billion.”


TOPS Leader in

STRESS FREE MORTGAGES Fairway Independent Mortgage DANA BACK-PACK 505 Wellington Way Ste. 110, Lexington 859.621.0169 //

At Fairway Independent Mortgage, every employee is guided by Fairway’s core value of ensuring that the trust they are given is backed by accurate, timely processing, which is delivered with the best technology available. As branch manager, Dana Back-Pack is committed to exceeding customer expectations, guaranteeing satisfaction and earning her client’s trust. BackPack says, “My goal is to act as your trusted advisor by providing highly personalized service and guiding you through every step of the loan process. My experience and integrity will guide you through the most important financial purchase you will make.” Having been in the mortgage industry since 2001, Back-Pack says she has had the privilege of working with and learning from some of the best in the business. According to Back-Pack, “I have learned to always listen and have the clients best interest at heart. I appreciate their trust and make myself available when they need me, seven days a week.” At Fairway Independent Mortgage, where “customer service is a way of life,” you cannot only expect great rates, but some of the fastest turn times in the industry. Back-Pack closes with, “Fairway’s core values have allowed me to be recognized as the mortgage leader of choice in central Kentucky.”

Dana’s stellar service and her ability to have loans ready to close early earned her the nickname “The Mortgage Ninja”!


TOPS Leader in

RETIREMENT INCOME STRATEGIES Five Star Life & Wealth, LLC GIANNA VENNARI 80 Codell Drive Ste.160, Lexington // 859.317.6848 //

Gianna was raised as the youngest of 10 children by two loving parents who celebrated 50 years of marriage together. To say that she deeply values the connection of family and building relationships is an understatement. The same is true of her professional life. Gianna loves getting to know the people who allow her to help them discover the best retirement they could imagine. Gianna has become known as the “Retirement Blueprint Girl” and believes that a well-devised distribution plan is the missing puzzle piece for many retirees. “I still speak with people on a regular basis who are amazed that they’ve never even been asked the most crucial questions when it comes to implementing an income plan during retirement”, Vennari says. As a member of the National Society of Financial Educators, Gianna genuinely enjoys teaching clients and friends about how to utilize tax-smart strategies to generate income, pass-on a legacy and most importantly live with peace of mind. Gianna says, “Most of us have plenty to keep our minds occupied in life without worrying about personal finances. My goal is to help folks achieve the true freedom that comes from knowing a plan is in place and will work for them while they enjoy life… after all, that’s what retirement is supposed to be about.”


TOPS Leader in


In exciting financial news, Kentucky Bank and Stock Yards Bank are merging. According to Louis Prichard, Kentucky Bank president and CEO, “We feel this merger will provide the operating scale, lending capacity, expanded product offerings and technology of a larger institution, married with the community banking model that both banks have always valued. It is a powerful formula for providing enhanced banking services to the Central Kentucky market.” Stock Yards Bancorp and Kentucky Bank are committed to standing by their shared promise of community, tradition, service. and innovation. Ja Hillebrand, Stock Yards Bank chairman of the board and CEO says, “We take care of the customers’ needs first, not ours. Everything else works out if you can simply do that. The banking industry continues to evolve. Whether it is customer facing technology or the use of block-chain technology to create efficiencies in daily processing and decisioning, we will stay at the front of technology in our industry.”


TOPS Leader in

COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT Bank of the Bluegrass & Trust Co. CHAD RUDZIK 215 Southland Drive, Lexington

The most important aspect of personal finance that Chad Rudzik wants Lexingtonians to understand is in regard to planning. He says, “Enjoy the good times but also plan for the future.” As Vice President and Wealth Management Advisor with Bank of the Bluegrass Wealth Management, Rudzik works with clients on their estate and business succession planning as well as investments, life insurance, and overall personal financial planning. By coordinating with the client’s CPAs and attorneys, Bank of the Bluegrass Wealth Management offers the soundest investment management that is backed by worldclass investment research. As technology becomes a larger and larger part of our lives—and our banking—Rudzik realizes the importance of face-to-face personalized service and building multi-generational relationships with clients. He states, “The industry has become more digital, but having personal relationships is key to truly understanding someone’s goals. One-on-one attention is what differentiates the best advisors.” When asked what motivates him to be a leader, Lexington native Rudzik says, “My kids. I want to build a good future for them and model the way, so they are productive members of society.”

Fun Fact: I am a “sneaker head!”


TOPS Leader in

BUSINESS LOANS Peoples Exchange Bank MATTHEW WHITE, NMLS #580177 901 Richmond Rd, Lexington (859) 269-0235 //

Offering a full scope of banking services for businesses and individuals, Peoples Exchange Bank is committed to meeting their customer’s needs. For decades they have helped Kentuckians build their businesses through smarter lending, including short term and long-term borrowing options. With local decision-makers and quick turnarounds they are simplifying the lending process. Having a banking partner who understands the nuance of your business and community is essential in today’s environment. Leading the Lexington team is Market President Matthew White, who has over 25 years of experience lending to families, businesses, and real estate operators. White, describes their bank as “locallyowned, hard-working and committed to Lexington.” When asked what sets Peoples Exchange Bank apart, Amy Sherrow, Vice President of Commercial Lending, says, “Our team. We have assembled some of the best people that the banking field has to offer to ensure that we are able to meet all of the customer’s goals. We all work together seamlessly for a common goal. I am only as good as the person sitting next to me.”

Our team shares a common creed—customer first.


TOPS Leader in

INSURNACE AND FINANCIAL SERVICES Powerful Legacy Insurance & Financial Services

KRISTINA PING 3260 Blazer Parkway, Ste. 100, Lexington //

Powerful Legacy offers far more than just your basic insurance and financial services firm. CEO Kristina Ping explains, “We specialize in solving retirement puzzles; making sure retirees do not outlive their money. We network with the very best in retirement strategies, tax harvesting, wills and estate needs, Medicare supplements, social security strategies, real estate, and mortgages to make sure our clients have the most powerful team protecting them.” Powerful Legacy is committed to transparency and treating their clients like family. “We love to find your needs and find a strategy to put into action to meet them. This gives our industry a true opportunity to make an impact in the community and take the best care of people.” Ping feels honored to be doing business in the Bluegrass, with firms in both Lexington and Louisville. “This is an amazing community! We love to serve our beautiful state.” She adds, “We love to network with other business owners to create an amazing team of service to our clients.”

My business is truly a legacy: my sons are licensed in the business!


TOPS Leader in


Assistant Vice President Joshua Stephenson describes PNC as “a large bank that has a Main Street bank mentality.” Stephenson, adds, “My team and I make every effort to build the kind of relationships you would expect to get from a local bank, but we have the resources and technology to give our clients an advantage over their competitors.” In his role as business banking relationship manager, Stephenson works with owners of small businesses with the goal of making banking easier and creating efficiencies to help them reach their goals: “Small business is the backbone of our community and it’s my job to make sure each business I work with and every community I serve has the opportunity to realize their full potential.” On his role as a leader within the industry, Stephenson says, “I’ve always felt that my biggest motivation to be a leader has been my desire to make an impact on peoples’ lives.”


TOPS Leader in

ASSET MANAGEMENT PNC Financial Services MICHAEL SCHACHLEITER 301 East Main Street, Lexington

PNC Financial Services understands what it takes to be a leader, and so does Michael Schachleiter, CFA. He says, “At PNC, we talk about leadership standards, a few of which are taking action to deliver results, including and encouraging teammates to better serve our clients, and enabling innovation. I take these standards to heart and seek to give each client the best that PNC can offer.” Schachleiter, who also serves as vice president and a senior investment advisor, is part of the PNC personal wealth management team in Lexington, which provides wealth management solutions to individuals and families to meet their long-term financial goals and objectives. In closing, Schachleiter states, “The most important lesson I have learned in business is that you have to always continue learning and growing. This includes not only your jobspecific technical skills, but also growth as a person to continue building relationships in your field and in your community.”


TOPS Leader in SAMANTHA NANCE // GENTRY COLLINS // SUZANNE SHAFFAR MARTHA J. GRIFFIN (NOT PICTURED) 201 East Main Street, Ste.1402, Lexington 859.543.0453 //


What sets EMSW’s female-led estate planning group apart is their team-based approach to addressing client needs. EMSW is a full-service law firm that uses a collaborative approach to provide its clients a consistent, comprehensive legal analysis across all areas of the law. Suzanne Shaffar, Gentry Collins and Martha Griffin (not pictured) focus exclusively on estate planning, trust administration, probate, and business succession planning, while Samantha Nance focuses on corporate formation, business succession, and real estate. “Together, we are able to offer clients a well-rounded legal team with concentrated expertise in the areas that matter most to our clients, their families, and their businesses,” explains Shaffar. Their estate planning services are a growing need. “There is little accurate information available to the public regarding estate planning and what it means, yet it affects everyone. A poorly planned or unplanned estate can impose undue burden and stress on the family members who are left behind to manage the fall out,” Shaffar explains. “We want our clients to understand their estates, understand their plan, and know they can come to us with any question no matter how small.”



TOPS Leader in

MORTGAGE LENDING AnnieMac Home Mortgage BRIAN LYKINS, NMLS# 7659 502.773.4834

Having personally closed over 100 million (serving an unbelievable 435 families) in new home loans for 2020, AnnieMac’s Branch Manager extraordinaire Brian Lykins is easily among the Top 1% performers in the mortgage industry today. Just a sampling of his recent accolades “Top 100 Purchase Loan Officer in the U.S.”, “Top 1% Originator in the U.S.”, “Top 1% KY 2019”, “2020 50 Under 50!” tells you all you need to know: Brian is a genuine national player, and the industry has taken notice. His secret? Just like AnnieMac, Brian’s approach with his clients is always handson. “My mission is simple: to deliver an honest, well-communicated, knowledge-based lending experience to all my clients and realtors,” Lykins shared. “Helping families achieve their dream of homeownership is something that I take great pride and true joy in doing.”



TOPS Leader in


At the Williams Agency, an independent insurance agency specializing in all lines of insurance, they fully believe in the Golden Rule: Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. The business is committed to being a community partner and places the utmost value on supporting their community, giving back, and building lasting relationships. They demonstrate this through volunteering and donating to local causes as well as in their emphasis on customer service. Partner and Manager Jessica Durphy, who is also an insurance specialist, explains, “The Williams Agency will often be found with our sleeves rolled up, getting our fingernails dirty working within our local community. Volunteering, organizing Senior Citizen Expos, giving beds away to our elementary school kids, donating, and giving back when a need is called to our attention.” As an independent agency with a team of licensed advisors, the Williams Agency represents multiple insurance companies and is experienced at finding the right coverage based on your unique insurance needs. They assist individuals on every level ranging from Medicare Supplement or Advantage plans to Guaranteed Annuities. They handle Business and Commercial Auto, General Liability, and Workers Compensation. Life Insurance is an integral part of their business model as well. Your automobiles and homes show your pride, so the Williams Agency takes great pride in protecting them properly. The truth is, the Williams Agency has always gone above and beyond to protect your assets. And, they will be there to help educate you every step of the way with a mission to “earn the trust of each and every client, build strong relationships, and give people the insurance experience they deserve while saving them money.” As part of this philosophy, the Williams Agency also prides itself on being inclusive and strives for diversity in all they do. According to Jessica Durphy, “Not only do I value community, but I see value in all of our cultures within my own community. I have a vision to be multicultural within my agency. We desire that everyone, no matter who you are, will feel valued and welcomed into our agency.” The Williams Agency was founded by Dan Williams in 1986. With Williams’ encouragement, Durphy moved to Kentucky and opened the Winchester satellite office. She says “Dan Williams is my leadership role model. He always “knew” I had special leadership qualities myself. Truthfully, he believed in my when I didn’t believe in myself.” Durphy as passed on the leadership lessons she learned from Dan Williams to her family as well. She states, “Being a leader holds me to a level of accountability that propels me to be the best version of ME that I can. There’s a certain joy that comes when you know that you’re leading a team on to bigger and deeper things. Watching others learn and become a better version of themselves because of the leadership they’ve received is like penicillin to a sick person. I’m just truly thankful for such an opportunity.”



TOPS Leader in

WEALTH MANAGEMENT Unified Trust Company 2353 Alexandria Dr. #100 // Lexington // 866.680.7000 //

According to Kevin Avent, Managing Director of Wealth Management at Unified Trust Company, “A leader must always put the needs of others above their own. They must set an example of how others should be treated. Unified Trust is a leader in wealth management because our client’s goals always come first.” For over 35 years, Unified Trust has been dedicated to meeting and exceeding its clients’ goals. As a national bank trust company headquartered in Lexington, Unified Trust serves individuals, businesses and nonprofits through financial planning, investment management, retirement planning, income strategies, estate and tax planning, charitable planning and more. Nationwide, Unified Trust manages over one billion dollars in wealth management assets. In an industry where investments aren’t always aligned with the clients’ needs, Unified Trust is honored to be among the first investment advisors in the world, and the first trust company, to be certified for fiduciary best practices by the Centre for Fiduciary Excellence (CEFEX). The company’s fiduciary investment advisors hold the Certified Financial Planner (CFP®) designation, the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA®) designation, as well as many additional degrees and certifications. The certifications are further evidence of Unified Trust’s belief in complete transparency and taking a true no conflict of interest approach. Avent states, “Most people don’t understand how their advisor is getting paid, which is concerning. We eliminate that concern by providing every client a quarterly invoice so they know exactly what they are paying us. We’re also fee-based, which means we cannot make any more or less based on what investments are selected. In fact, any revenue sharing we receive from the fund companies is passed back to our clients to offset their fees to us.” This unique model was established by Dr. Gregory Kasten, the company’s founder who left the medical world to change the landscape of the investment world. Kasten felt the financial services industry needed to operate under the same principals of the medical field, meaning to always act in the best interest of the patient…or in this case, the investor. For this altruistic approach, he was named as National Advisor of the Year and inducted into the Advisor Hall of Fame. In closing, Avent offers these words, “Being a leader of Lexington isn’t about flashiness, it’s about substance and heart. It’s about doing the right thing, the right way, for the benefit of others.”


DIANE VERHALEN 525 Darby Creek #29, Lexington // 859.977.6006 //

TOPS Leader in

INVESTMENT MANAGEMENT Alliance Financial Planning

Diana Verhalen, a Certified Financial Planner™ Professional, founded her financial planning business in 2004. Since then, she has operated with this philosophy: “If you do the right thing, it always pays off in the end. Put the clients’ needs first and your business will always succeed.” Alliance Financial Planning is an independent firm focused on finding the best solutions for their clients in the realms investment management, financial and retirement planning, life insurance, college savings, and more. As a leader in investment management, she has recently expanded her team to better serve clients’ needs. Diane takes pride in leading a female-owned firm in a male-dominated industry and being one of only 879 Certified Financial Planners™ Professional in the state. She sees the bigger impact of her work and says, “Positive change in the world is a good thing and anything I can do to help in making that happen is what I want to be doing.” Securities and advisory services offered through LPL Financial, a Registered Investment Advisor, Member FINRA/SIPC


TOPS Leader in

ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT Montgomery County Industrial Authority JASON RAINEY 124 North Maysville Street, Mt. Sterling, KY 859.498.5400

As executive director of the Industrial Authority and Chamber, Rainey is responsible for oversight of all economic development efforts, including new and expansion projects and job retention efforts. He most recently served at the Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development, where he was Senior Policy Advisor for economic development statewide with the Gov. Beshear and Gov. Bevin administrations. During his time in Frankfort, Kentucky experienced record setting economic growth, including over $22 billion in new investment and the creation of 59,000 new jobs. Jason is a native Kentuckian from Clark County. He is a graduate of Northern Kentucky University Chase College of Law and his list of educational accomplishments only start there. Rainey says “Job creation and economic development is my passion. Coming from a small Kentucky town, I know first- hand the impact that job creations can have on families across the commonwealth and helping Kentucky families is my life’s work”.


the next steps to becoming



TOPS in Lexington | March 2021

From paved parking lot to park

paradise Town Branch Park Takes Next Steps to Becoming Reality BY RON L. BROWN AND CLAY ANGELUCCI

When you think of great urban parks, you have to travel to Central Park, The High Line or Bryant Park in New York City; Millennium Park in Chicago; Piedmont Park in Atlanta; or even down the road to Olmstead and The Parklands at Floyds Fork in Louisville. Those parks were the inspiration for a green oasis in our urban core as we aspire to increase our position as a destination city and enhance the quality of life for our entire community with Town Branch Park. Amenities will include the Town Branch Trail, a playground, water play, dog park, and a concert stage and amphitheater. Through years of planning, community engagement and fundraising, Town Branch Park is taking the next significant steps to becoming a reality. The enthusiasm for the park and what it represents is reflected in the fact that we have raised more than $25 million dollars –more than 80% of the campaign’s initial goal.

Moore Square Park in Raleigh, NC design by Sasaki features a flexible civic plaza with an interactive fountain, a space for movable seating or stage events, and a pavilion that contains a café and public restrooms.

March 2021 |


In Cincinnati’s Smale Riverfront Park, Sasaki integrated multiple opportunities for children to interact with water within the Adventure Playground. The playground features a variety of opportunities for kids to grow their social, imaginative, and physical skills. 90

Even in the midst of a pandemic, the community has embraced the positive impact Town Branch Park will have on Lexington and invested in it. Well-planned urban parks work as catalysts that spur and support private investment — both residential and commercial. During COVID-19, our parks have become even more highly valued assets — providing a sense of community, connection and recreation. Town Branch Park can play a critical role in economic development and recovery as we continue to rebound from downturn as a result of the pandemic. And because of the strong fundraising effort, Town Branch Park can begin the final design and engineering phase. International and local firms have been hired to bring the project to life. Boston-based Sasaki will be the lead designer, supported by a team of local firms. It is a world-class design firm with extensive experience working with nonprofits such as Town Branch Park. Sasaki has led the design of civic open spaces, including award-winning landscapes like Cincinnati’s Smale Riverfront Park, the Chicago Riverwalk, Boston City Hall Plaza and Moore Square in Raleigh. Many of our nation’s signature urban gathering spaces were built with private money and maintained through conservancies, which care for large and small urban parks across the country. Town Branch Park has chosen the conservancy model so local taxpayer dollars can be focused on other important areas, such as public safety, roads and neighborhood parks. Through the conservancy model, the park will be able to provide extensive free programming, a high standard of maintenance, and a high level of safety and security.

TOPS in Lexington | March 2021

Before final design plans are developed, now is the time when we take the community’s vision and turn it into reality with input from residents and a talented team of local experts. Intentional efforts have been made from the beginning to be inclusive of all segments of the community. There will be several additional opportunities for continued input and involvement throughout the process. The first community engagement session with Sasaki will be held this month. Seize the opportunity for your voice to be heard and have ownership in what the park will become. This park is your park, so your involvement is crucial. Check out our website at as well as our Facebook and Instagram pages for details on timing and how to sign up. We also encourage you to sign up for our e-newsletter so you can stay up to date on all the latest news. With your help, this park will be an example of how a land reuse project can work for everyone. Town Branch Park will create opportunities for people to interact with people they might not typically engage with. There will be no income or race barrier. People will step outside their comfort zone and find something so much more than they expected. Everyone will be welcome in Lexington’s living room. As downtown business owners and, more importantly, as parents of young children who will grow up here and hopefully want to raise their children here, we are excited about the opportunity this park will provide. It is the right vision for this time and the next half century. It will be an inclusive catalyst for music, arts, recreation and economic development in the heart of our city. We can’t think of a better use for a former parking lot, can you?

March 2021 |


Leaders in


TOPS in Lexington | Sponsored Content

363 Thompson Road, Lexington //

TOPS Leader in


We can all benefit from taking better care of ourselves—along with the energy, confidence, and peace of mind that a good workout brings. Luckily, Lexington has Burn Boot Camp to provide that opportunity. Owned by Tom Wylie and Teryl Greist, Burn is a boutique fitness facility with 45-minute workouts for all fitness levels. The trainers and staff work hard to not only build stronger and leaner bodies, but to build community within their facility. They say their motivation is “the lives we have changed over the last 3.5 years. That’s what keeps us going!” The team at Burn is looking forward to the future and safely bringing all their clients together again, because nothing compares to the energy of a full class. “We are certain over the coming months that more people will be ready to workout outside of their homes. We all need the sense of community working out in a physical space with like-minded people offers, so we are looking forward to that!”

Teryl and Tom are finally getting married in October! SPONSORED CONTENT

TOPS Leader in

ADDICTION TREATMENT 2nd Chance Clinic DR. BISHOP, DR. TRAN + DR. HOWARD 1420 North Broadway, Lexington // 859.368.8820 //

Addiction does not discriminate, and neither does 2nd Chance Clinic, where the team believes every individual deserves an opportunity to overcome addiction and move on to lead a productive life. According to CEO Tuyen Tran, MD, “All of our physicians and staff will truly support our patients on their journey to recovery. We will treat every patient with dignity and render no judgment. We will walk beside each of our patients on their journey.” Dr. Tran and Dr. Bishop, both board certified in addiction medicine by the American Board of Preventive Medicine, founded the clinic in 2012. Dr. Tran states, “We initially began the clinic to treat patients with opioid addiction—prescription opioids such as hydrocodone, oxycodone, dilaudid, heroin and fentanyl. The opioid epidemic was claiming many Kentuckian lives prematurely and we wanted to participate in the solution.” Since its creation, 2nd Chance Clinic has expanded their outpatient services to cover all chemical types of addiction including alcohol, cocaine, methamphetamine, amphetamines, benzodiazepines and marijuana, and is opening a second location in Somerset, KY later in April 2021. Their approach is comprehensive. Dr. Bishop explains, “2nd Chance is one of the few clinics that provides a full treatment regimen for patients who are affected by addiction in an outpatient setting. We provide the full spectrum of physician-led treatment, counseling, and case management. We treat the patient as a whole-person.” Dr. Tran elaborates, “When a patient craves their drug or is experiencing withdrawals, the priority in their mind is the drug, how to get it, and how to satisfy their need. Once our physicians manage that craving medically, patients can focus on psychosocial therapy. And through intensive psychosocial therapy, delivered by our master’s trained counselors, we hope to effect positive behavioral change.” Knowing that patients can never truly engage in recovery until their fundamental needs are met, 2nd Chance case managers identify the social barriers, such as domestic violence, lack of transportation, food, shelter and legal threats, which may impede successful recovery, and provide resources accordingly. Dr. Tran, who has witnessed the devastating effect of addiction in our state first-hand, says, “We started the clinic because we cared.”



TOPS Leader in


AMY WATTS, TERRI FISCHER-WARE AND MIKE BISHOP 409 Etter Dr., Nicholasville // 859.887.1094 //

Dr. Mike Bishop partnered together with Terri Fischer-Ware and Amy Watts to create a truly special patient experience at M.R. Bishop DMD & Associates. First, they gathered a great team of dentists, hygienists, technicians and staff deeply dedicated to meeting the needs of every patient. Bishop says, “We’ve learned over the years to love what we do and the people we care for every day. If we continue to take care of our patients like they are family, the rest will fall into place.” State-of-the-art technology is part of this care, including a 3D printer that can provide a printed model of the patient’s mouth. Dr. Bishop, who has been practicing for 40 years, says, “The level of technology that we implement each and every day is truly unique in our industry and in Central Kentucky.” The general dentistry practice offers best-in-class basic oral and advanced care, including same day crowns, invisible aligners, and oral appliances to provide a C-PAP–free sleep solution. “Giving back to the community that has supported our practice for years is important to our entire team,” Dr. Bishop says.


TOPS Leader in

MOMMY MAKEOVERS Commonwealth Plastic Surgery JARED NIMTZ, MD 715 Shaker Drive, #100, Lexington 859.277.9435

Mommy makeover is Doctor Nimtz’ most requested procedure. Typically, women think of a mommy makeover as some type of breast and belly procedure done at the same time to save on cost and recovery time. This is certainly true. He can, however, tailor the procedures to address what each woman needs, such as a breast lift and liposuction to the thigh. Some women may not need a full tummy tuck procedure but want a tighter abdomen and flank. With Renuvion we are able to perform liposuction and then permanently tighten the skin. In order to use their unwanted fat, a lot of women are opting to transfer fat to the breast to fill up lost volume. To give back to our mothers, for consultations booked during the month of May 2021, we will be offering a complimentary area of liposuction when a patient books her mommy makeover procedure. If you desire something restorative, but not surgery, Commonwealth Plastic Surgery has expanded their brand to include Sol Retreat at Keene Trace. Moms can book a massage, facial or filler.


1740 Nicholasville Road //

TOPS Leader in

PATIENT CARE Baptist Health Lexington

By offering state-of-the-art, comprehensive care and immunizations, Baptist Health Lexington in leading the fight in Kentucky against COVID-19. According to Bill Sisson, president, “We have met the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic with innovative care and the compassion that our patients rely on. We responded to the pandemic with new treatments and we looked to the future by participating in the Johnson & Johnson vaccine trial as a way to help prevent tragic outcomes of the virus. Currently we are administering Pfizer and Moderna at our vaccine center in Lexington Green and look forward to the possibilities that new immunizations will bring.” Established in 1954 with a mission to “demonstrate the love of Christ by providing and coordinating care and improving health in our communities,” Baptist Health Lexington serves patients from many areas of the state. The 434bed acute and skilled care facility is known not only for its clinical excellence and


groundbreaking research, but its commitment to passionate care. Though widely recognized as a leader in heart and cancer care, Baptist Health Lexington also uses the latest innovations and technologies to provide top-of-the-line care in stroke, diabetes, orthopedics, sleep disorders, bariatric, rehabilitation, urgent, and emergency. And they have long been as leaders in women’s health and maternity care, having delivered nearly 160,000 babies. At Baptist Health Lexington more than 500 physicians, representing more than 50 medical specialties, are there to save the day by providing the best in diagnosis and treatment. With many points of care throughout Lexington and in surrounding counties, through a network of healthcare providers for patients, healthcare professionals are ready to meet your health care and wellness needs. The hospital is one of the few in the nation to be designated a Magnet hospital for nursing excellence four times by the American Nurses Credentialing Center. If you have considered a career in nursing or another area of healthcare, now is a prime time to pursue it. Sisson states, “There has never been a better time to consider a career in healthcare. With the new Hamburg hospital projected to open in 2023, this is an optimal time to consider a future in nursing or other medical fields. The pandemic has highlighted how essential and noble these professions are and will continue to be.”


TOPS Leader in

RELAXATION Corey Proffitt Studios Massage COREY PROFFITT-BOYD 2121 Richmond Road, Ste.211C, Lexington

By creating the type of experience he would want for himself, Licensed Massage Therapist Corey Proffitt-Boyd can take pride in each client living a healthier and happier life because of his business. Proffitt-Boyd holds Board Certification in Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork, which is the massage and bodywork profession’s highest credential. Corey Proffitt Studios provides general relaxation massage as well as specific therapeutic massage targeted to offer relief from chronic health issues and aid in rehabilitation. Proffitt says, “Our work is more medical in nature but is provided in a spa-like atmosphere. We focus on total mind/body health by providing exceptionally high-quality bodywork. Our sessions are customized for every client at every appointment.” In closing, he adds, “Therapeutic massage is growing in popularity across the country as human medicine begins to recognize massage as healthcare. More and more people are experiencing the true health benefits of receiving massage on a regular basis.” We’ve recently expanded to accommodate our appointment demand and we are excited to welcome Lauren Hicks, LMT to the practice!


TOPS Leader in

BEAUTIFUL SMILES Dental Care by Gretchen Kinchen GRETCHEN KINCHEN 989 Governor’s Lane, Ste.120, Lexington

Unlike other practices, at Dental Care by Gretchen Kinchen, the focus is on total body wellness. Dentist and Owner Gretchen Kinchen says, “I believe that the mouth is the gateway to overall health. To that end, we begin by providing excellent dental care by creating healthy, beautiful smiles. Yet we aren’t simply attempting to ‘fix teeth,’ we strive to add value to the patient as a person.” The full-service dental practice provides basic dental care, preventive care, cosmetic treatment, tooth replacement options, and facial aesthetics, including Botox therapy for TMJ pain. Kinchen stays up-to-date with the latest developments in dental technology, saying, “it is one of the aspects of the industry that fuels my passion as we move forward.” The love of seeing something grow from concept to completion is a key to Kinchen’s success: “Whether it is building a great team or a strong practice, I love seeing something for what it can be and moving forward to make that vision become a reality. From a leadership perspective, there is nothing more satisfying than building something you envisioned with people you love.”

My two oldest children are both starting professional boxing careers!


TOPS Leader in

PERSONAL HOME CARE FirstLight Home Care of Lexington BRONWYN BUTLER + CHARLENE NORMAN CHARLES 200 E Reynolds Road, Ste 3, Lexington // 859-785-2691

Extraordinary people offering exceptional care sets FirstLight Home Care apart from the competition. As a non-medical home care company, FirstLight helps clients, within their homes, with the tasks required for a quality daily life. Caretakers provide numerous levels of care—from post surgery, respite, dementia, travel, and various degrees of personal care—a few hours a week to 24/7, with clients ranging in age from 18 years to seniors. In addition to personal care, the well-trained staff also offers companionship services and much-needed assistance for busy parents now working from home. Regardless the level of care, rest assured, all of FirstLight’s caregivers are taking extra precautions and following procedures to keep you and your loved ones healthy and safe. FirstLight Home Care is proud to consider Lexington home: “We love the friendliness of our city. The history of our clients and the stories they tell makes each individual visit special.”


TOPS Leader in

DIVERSITY & INCLUSION IN GRADUATE NURSING Frontier Nursing University DR. SUSAN STONE + DR. GERALDINE YOUNG 2050 Lexington Road, Versailles // 859.251.4700 //

For 80 years, Frontier Nursing University has been preparing nurse-midwives and nurse practitioners to administer crucial care within their communities. With 2,400 students from all 50 states currently enrolled, Frontier Nursing University is one of the largest not for profit universities in the United States for advanced nursing and midwifery education. For years, the FNU community has been an advocate in fighting systemic racism within the healthcare system. “FNU emphasizes diversity, equity and inclusion because patients are more receptive to care from a health provider who understands their culture and socioeconomic background. We understand that where diversity is lacking among healthcare professionals, patients suffer,” says Dr. Susan Stone, President. Dr. Geraldine Young, Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer, adds, “Diversity, equity, and inclusion are the keys to the future success of the health care delivery system.” To address this gap, FNU created the nationally recognized Diversity Impact Program (formerly Diversity PRIDE) to promote an inclusive workforce and learning environment, with a goal of increasing diversity in the nursing and midwifery professions. Since 2010, students of color in FNU’s programs have increased from 9% to 25%, resulting in better care options for patients across the country.


TOPS Leader in

KISSABLE LIPS Hourglass Aesthetics + Salon BETH HOURIGAN 124 Clay Ave, Lexington 859.904.5274 //

Hourglass is a 2-story medical and wellness spa. The first floor houses a medical spa while the second story serves as home to their hair salon. They focus on facial aesthetics, medical wellness, bio-identical hormones, lash extensions and hand tied hair extensions and all hair services for teens, men and women. Hourglass is a mega-spa; their staff consists of experts who have truly honed their craft. “No one person can do 100 things well, so we try to help our team find out where they shine and highlight them for that within our community,” says Beth. “Team-led businesses are the best models. They are extremely rewarding for everyone!” She adds, “Mega-spas that offer many specialties under one roof will be where it’s at in our industry, so we are really ahead of the curve here at Hourglass. Through our facial aesthetics using collagen stimulators, HAs, thread lifts and draping that support with glowing, healthy skin.” “Lexington is home to me! I really feel like the luckiest girl in the world that I get to live, work, raise my family amd thrive here in my community that I proudly call home,” she says.

I was once a finalist for the TV show The Apprentice!


TOPS Leader in

ORGANIC NAIL CARE Lavish Nails YI LEAM, ANNA LEAM + VISAL HENG 2200 War Admiral Way, Lexington // 859.299.0929 //

It has been said “Life is too short to have naked nails!” Owned by Yi Leam and Anna Leam and managed by Visal Heng, Lavish Nails is changing the nail spa experience in Lexington, offering all-natural organic products and top-notch service. There is nothing more relaxing than a good spa day, but it can be hard to clear a full day for yourself! The team at Lavish Nails is ready to help you embrace self-care for an hour or two, and will ensure that your experience leaves you feeling renewed. Their newly remodeled and expanded spa offers manicures, pedicures, and waxing. When you step in the doors of their gorgeous salon, you might feel like you took a trip to Nashville or L.A. Whether you like to keep it classic or want to try the newest nail trends, their team is ready to take great care of you and your nails.


TOPS Leader in

HEART CARE CHI Saint Joseph Health NEZAR FALLUJI, MD & SHEILA DEVINE GRIFFETH, MSN, RN 1 Saint Joseph Dr. Lexington, KY // 859.313.1000 //

Heart disease is the leading cause of death in Kentucky. CHI Saint Joseph Health is at the forefront of Kentucky cardiology in both heart care and research, and are pioneering the next generation of heart care. Saint Joseph Hospital has been recognized for care of heart failure patients as a five-star recipient by Healthgrades for 10 years in a row and as a high performing hospital by US News and World Report in 2020. Saint Joseph East is recognized by Healthgrades as a five-star recipient for treatment of heart attack two years in a row. The team of nationally renowned cardiologists and cardiovascular surgeons perform the full spectrum of invasive, noninvasive and surgical procedures. Using the most sophisticated equipment and techniques to diagnose, manage, and treat heart and vascular disease, the collaborative team is among the best in the region. Sheila loves being a part of the CHI Saint Joseph Health team because they address the needs of everyone involved. “In my opinion, hospital clinical programs succeed or fail based on their individual ability to respond to the needs of three separate constituencies — patients, payers, and physicians,” says Sheila. “There is clear evidence that patients, payers, and physicians are beginning to shop not just for the best hospital, but also for specific programs that can demonstrate their value by combining clinical quality, economic efficiency, and patient satisfaction. The business follows the care and not the other way around. That’s been my guidepost for my entire career.” At CHI Saint Joseph Health, cardiologists, heart surgeons, nurses, and support staff all work together in patient care to deliver the very best treatment options for heart disease in adults and children. “The joy of being a team, pursuing a purpose, and the thrill to strive for a common goal ¬– with success – motivates me,” Sheila explains. “The journeys we enjoy together as a team, the experiences we make, the obstacles we overcome, the things we get done, the laughs we have, and the achievements we celebrate. Focusing on and mission and vision is priority.”




TOPS Leader in

CANCER CARE CHI Saint Joseph Health

701 Bob-O-Link Dr. Suite 120, Lexington 3470 Blazer Parkway Suite 230, Lexington 859.313.HOPE (4673) //

The health care industry is complex and ever-changing, as the last year has demonstrated so clearly, and this is especially true in the realm of cancer care. As Kentucky continues to lead the nation in death rates and incidence rates for cancer, it is critical that a cancer program stay ahead of the curve to provide communities with the latest treatments and a vast array of options. CHI Saint Joseph Health has been leading the way in the treatment of cancer for more than 40 years. The Cancer Care team of physicians, nurses, social workers, dieticians, genetic counselors, clinical researchers, lab technicians


and support staff is dedicated to providing leading-edge care. Providing a patient-centered approach in easily accessible, community-based locations distinguishes CHI Saint Joseph Health from other oncology providers in Kentucky. To continue providing next generation cancer care to the region, they have teamed up with the Cleveland Clinic Cancer Center – rated as one of the nation’s top cancer programs by US News & World Report – to administer the best treatment options to Kentuckians. In addition, as part of the national CommonSpirit Health network, CHI Saint Joseph Health has access to a large registry of clinical trials that are available to their Kentucky patients. Early detection is often the best protection. The CHI Saint Joseph team provides the most advanced screenings available to catch cancer earlier when it’s highly treatable. From all-digital mammography to low-dose CT scans, the Cancer Care team can work with patients to understand which screenings are the right fit. With flexible appointments in a setting designed for total comfort and privacy, the caring staff ensures that every experience is as stress-free as possible for the patient’s peace of mind. CHI Saint Joseph Health is delivering on their vision to provide a healthier future for all, by delivering highly specialized care, expertise and convenience to Kentucky residents.


TOPS Leader in

WOMENS CARE Lexington Women’s Health THE MIDWIFERY TEAM Shelley A. Chenault, CNM, Iniko Sallee, CNM, APRN Laure Schadler C.N.M. + Alisha Morgan, C.N.M. 1720 Nicholasville Road, Ste. 702, Lexington // 859.264.8811 // 1775 Alysheba Way, Ste. 180, Lexington // 615 East Brannon Road, Ste. 200, Lexington

Since 2007, Lexington Women’s Health has been an innovator in health care for women. Featuring care led by an exceptional group of Obstetrician/Gynecologists, Certified Nurse-Midwives, and Nurse Practitioners, the providers at Lexington Women’s Health are proud to offer the women of the Bluegrass over 150 years of combined experience in women’s health care. The Certified Nurse-Midwives at Lexington Women’s Health specialize in providing care to women based on their individual needs. Their philosophy of care emphasizes ethical care for women that focuses on the physical, social, and psychological condition of women ages 12 and up. They work in conjunction with other members of the health care team to achieve optimal outcomes. The CNMs are experts in normal pregnancy, medicated and unmedicated childbirth, postpartum care, and benign gynecology. Midwifery care has long been associated with lower incidences of cesarean sections, lower rates of labor induction and augmentation, and increased rates of breastfeeding. Women with chronic or high-risk health problems can receive gynecologic and prenatal care from CNMs, however these women are often seen in collaboration with Lexington Women’s Health physicians who manage ongoing or chronic illness. Since CNMs do not perform surgery they partner with obstetricians who are available 24 hours a day to perform surgery in the event of an emergency. “At this practice, patient respect is paramount.” Alisha Morgan, CNM states. “At Lexington Women’s Health we foster an environment of respect. Respect for each other, respect for our colleagues, and most of all, respect for our patients.” Despite the challenges of the last year, Lexington Women’s Health has continued to provide excellent care to women of the Bluegrass. The professional staff take pride in welcoming new and existing patients to one of three convenient Lexington locations for full scope women’s health care.



TOPS Leader in

EQUINE CARE Park Equine Hospital DR. JOHN C. PARK + TONYA H. PARK 5455 Lexington Road //

Established in 2001, by Dr. John C. Park, CEO, and his wife, Tonya H. Park, CFO, Park Equine Hospital was built on one simple principle: to provide the very best care to equine patients and the people who love them. With two Lexington area locations, they service all breeds and disciplines, ranging from pleasure, show, and sport horses to the family pony. According to Dr. Park, “All patients are treated with the same level of care and dignity, no matter if they are an accomplished show horse or a rescued horse. We have the most talented and dedicated hospital staff in the industry.” From emergency surgery to drive-through laboratory and pharmacy, their care covers a range of needs. “As long as there’s a need, we will be here to help,” say the Parks. They have two locations to ensure complete care. The Parks are grateful to reside in and provide care to central Kentucky: “The opportunities for equine veterinarians and veterinary staff here in the ‘horse capital of the world’ are incomparable to other parts of the country. We love everything about horses, which makes practicing in the heart of the bluegrass the best place to be.”

urin in ement eat er se era dedi ated sta mem ers o unteer to s eep o er at t e ospita to ma e sure a s i ts are o ered


TOPS Leader in


Why Pilates? According to Melissa and Laura Calmes, co-owners of Mind Over Body, “Pilates brings balance, strength, flexibility, and mobility. It really is the foundation for all movement, whether you are a professional athlete, a sports enthusiast, or are moving through daily life.” They add, “It’s like physical therapy for the body. The work doesn’t allow you to push yourself further than your present ability, which means it’s safe. And, through expert teaching, we are able to safely guide our clients to reach their unique, individual goals.” Mind Over Body is a contemporary Pilates reformer studio located in Chevy Chase offering Pilates reformer, barre, and matbased classes to all ages—teens to seniors. In addition, they offer aerial yoga with aerial hoop coming soon. Their instructors have a combined 40+ years of experience and a passion for teaching. They focus on precise alignment for safe practice, core conditioning, and a progression of each student’s body. The owners say, “Attention to core activation and full body movement utilizing the breath and mind, provides a level of integrative fitness that is hard to find elsewhere.”

We are a triplet-owned business! SPONSORED CONTENT

TOPS Leader in


Neuro-Fitness Founder Al Roehl created the company to enable individuals to reach their full potential. He states, “Throughout my career, even as I reached the level of CEO, I recognized that a ‘winning mindset’ is more important than talent alone. Leaders need to obviously hire talented individuals, but they should spend more time learning to inspire them for greater productivity.” Thus, The Neuro-Fitness Center was born. The virtual center provides coaching, mentoring, and group workshops to drive tangible, sustainable behavioral change based on the latest neuroscience. Roehl is certified in applied neuroscience, brain health, and brain-based coaching. Roehl’s past experience as a successful CEO is one of the factors that sets Neuro-Fitness apart. He states, “While there are many executive coaches and training programs, few are led by individuals with real-world experience. Building on this real-world experience, I bring a practical understanding of how to apply neuroscience to people’s careers and lives for maximum impact.”



TOPS Leader in


As the only contemporary Reformer studio in Lexington, Reform Pilates offers clients high-energy classes that focus on seamless flow and transition to help promote elongated and toned muscles. Pilates has typically been seen as a rehabilitative exercise program in the past, but at Reform Pilates, it’s so much more. Owner/Instructor Amanda Stamper says, “We offer a fresh, hip, and innovative approach to the traditional Pilates-based workout specifically designed to strengthen, tighten, and tone the body quickly and safely. And we promise you will leave sweating and wanting more.” In addition to small group Reformer classes—which are never more than eight people— Reform Pilates offers one-on-one sessions, duets, trios, and private parties, all taught by one of their expert instructors. They also have cardio and jump board classes that are easy on the joints but hard on calories, burning lots in every session. For those who have longed to take a class, but are hesitant, Stamper says, “Never be afraid to try something new. Stepping out of your comfort zone is scary, but that’s where the magic happens.”


TOPS Leader in

REJUVENATION Wellward Regenerative Medicine

DANESH MAZLOOMDOOST, M.D 101 N Eagle Creek Drive, Lexington 859.275.4878 //

At Wellward Regenerative Medicine, Dr. Danesh and his team address the source of pain through a comprehensive approach. Their unique approach seeks the root of the pain or problem, rather than just masking the pain with medication. Once their team has identified the root of a problem, they’ll work with each patient on a custom plan to heal their body. A comprehensive plan addresses both mental and physical wellbeing, to help you bounce back from injury in a quick and effective way. By identifying and treating the source, they are able to help patients feel renewed and get back to living life to their full potential. “Our goal is to get you back to pursuing your life goals,” says Dr. Danesh. Wellward’s consultants are sub-specialty trained anesthesiologists, well-versed in the latest technologies and techniques for addressing chronic, neuropathic, or cancer-related pain. Procedures are minimally invasive, same-day, and rarely leave a mark.


TOPS Leader in

BODY COUNTOURING CoolBluLex AMANDA HARMS, CNA, MA 3288 Eagle View Lane, Suite 300, Lexington 859.254.5665 //

A lot of aesthetic providers know the basics of treatment, but the definition of an expert is someone who knows what not to do. That’s one of the reasons why CoolBluLex is the largest noninvasive body contouring provider in Kentucky. With her sharp eye for body contouring aesthetics, master level placement of CoolSculpting and CoolTone technology, and experience-acquired body assessment techniques, it’s no wonder Harms has performed the most CoolSculpting treatments in the Commonwealth, with exceptional results. Not only has Harms reached the level of Master Sculptor from CoolSculpting and CoolTone manufacturer Allergan, her Master’s in Medical Sciences from the University of Kentucky and hands-on experience in health care has given her a research-based confidence in the science behind the technology. “We find it humbling to know we’ve built a reputation among Allergan and other CoolSculpting providers for offering honest recommendations that provide realistic expectations,” says Harms, COO of CoolBluLex. “This is important because every patient should receive the best medical care for their body concerns. We want to help ensure that all CoolSculpting patients achieve exceptional results and experience top quality patient care.”


TOPS Leader in

INJECTIONS Center for Anti Aging DR. KARLA STEPHEN 535 Wellington Way Ste.360, Lexington 859.402.2005

The driving force behind the Center for Anti Aging team is desire to help all of their clients “Feel Beautiful.” Dr. Karla Stephen, owner and sole physician at the Center for Anti-Aging MedSpa, explains, “When we present ourselves to others we want to project an image of how we feel, so helping someone appear more rested, happy, youthful and approachable is usually the goal. It’s not just about preventing wrinkles and correcting volume loss, it’s mostly about helping that person feel confident and happy about their appearance.” The Center for Anti-Aging is the only MedSpa in Lexington where you are guaranteed that a physician or their new Physician Assistant, Paige Smith, PA-C, will perform your injection. With experience in Botox, Dysport, Newtox, Restylane and Sculptra treatments, Dr. Stephen ensures that clients receive “exceptional, natural-looking results, while maintaining consistency with dosage and maintenance requirements.” The team at the Center provides a full-range of facial services, including the popular HydraFacial, non-surgical body sculpting such as SculpSure, i-Lipo, Venus Freeze, Emsculpt and much more.


Networking T.C.B. IN T HE AG E OF COV I D by Keith Yarber, TOPS Publisher

Business is a contact sport. I love this sentence because that is the essence of most businesses The more contacts you make, the more successful you will be pretty simple concept. hen I first started in sales and business, I dreaded the “cold call.” I have seen many careers who didn t reach success, because the person couldn t get over making calls. The truth is, a er I got through the first few months and gained confidence in my products and myself, I started looking forward to making cold calls. It became a fun game to me. “ ho is going to be behind oor oday ep, I ran into the occasional knucklehead, but more times than not, I met so many wonderful people who became not only great clients, but also great friends. very situation, properly perceived, is an opportunity. Most of us have had to re invent how we do business because of ovid .

ertainly, at , it has caused us to improve our content and distribution. ltimately, it has made us a stronger operation. So how do you network in the age of Covid-19? Face to face is always the best option but only, and only if everyone feels safe and comfortable. ertainly, it is more of a challenge these days, but it can be done people are meeting in person. ust mask up Maybe double mask and keep your distance. ou always want to ask permission first. The business lunch and cocktails are alive and well. I plan to increase those significantly a er getting vaccinated. I miss seeing friends and clients. s vaccines increase and the weather warms, there will be a much pent up demand to “meet for lunch.” There is a great book titled “ ever eat lunch alone.” ne friend of mine has a goal to have lunch with a “ I ” in the community every week.

March 2021 |


The lost art of making a phone call. There is way too much emphasis on sending emails. They have their place. Pick up the phone, and talk to your clients. All of us have had too much isolation, and it is nice to hear a human voice. Don’t just call to sell something. Check-in on your clients to see how they are doing personally and professionally. Zoom Calls. Yep. A zoom call. Not as good as being in person, but better than a phone call. Please make sure that the lighting is on your face, and not behind you. No one likes talking to a silhouette. Don’t be too far away from the camera as it makes you look not engaged. Ring lights and microphones are affordable these days. Make sure you are seen in “your best light” and look professional. Emails. The bane of my existence. Like most people, I get an avalanche of emails each day. And processing emails takes us way too much time. If I ask someone if they have contacted a client, and the response is “Yes, I sent them an email”, then they will get “the look!” If you send an email, make sure the subject line is relatable. The best emails are short, and have easy-toread spacing, short paragraphs, and bullet points. Social Media and LinkedIn. Great tools and we are all using them. If you post something, make sure it is of value. Why should someone connect and engage with you? Bring something to the table. Handwritten notes. Do it because no one else is. It is one of the more impactful and personal networking you can do. We rely on so many digital communications these days, sometimes a good oldfashioned “Thank You” note will stand out. They will get read and get noticed. Go Bold! Early on in my career, I was trying hard to get a meeting with a huge client that wasn’t returning my phone calls. On advice from my mentor, Jim Heavner, I sent him a gift-wrapped shoebox with one new man’s dress shoe and a pair of dark socks. The note inside said, “If you let me get my foot in the door, I have a presentation that will knock your socks off.” The client called me for the meeting and said it was the most creative “introduction” he had ever seen. We wound up with a happy and large client. THIS is how you stand out from your competition. Join organizations. I have met many lifelong friends being on boards and committees. Choose one or two non-profits that mean something to you. There are leads groups, chamber meetings, professional development groups. These make it easy to build up a nice list of valuable contacts.


TOPS in Lexington | March 2021

March 2021 |


Interviewing for a career opportunity? went down her chin and throat. he was acting as if nothing was irst, are you looking for a “ ob” or a “career ” Those two things are di erent. on t waste your time or someone s time if you are ust looking for a “ ob.” hoose a career path that you can see yourself growing within , , years, or longer. career in which you learn, grow, and succeed is much more satisfying than a “ ob.” I have had many terrific interviews over the years, but a few “out of the ordinary” ones stand out. ne young woman wore so much perfume to the interview, I began to get a throbbing headache, and I never get headaches. e were in a small, closed o ce. My face was getting ushed and my eyes were watering. It was so bad, I had to stop the interview and ask her to go to the bathroom to try to wash o the gallons she had applied. he came back, embarrassed as you can imagine. he was a terrific interview otherwise. ever heard from her again. I don t have a great sense of smell, but there is something in perfumes, colognes, and lotions that I and others can smell a mile away. My rule of thumb is to use unscented lotions and leave the scented stu for dates. It is easy to get “nose blind” to the scents you may be applying every day, and they can be a real turno to others. I had a salesperson who wore scented lotions. I kept telling her how strong it was, but she persisted. he met with a client, who like my interview before, had to stop the meeting with her because he was getting a headache from her lotions and potions. he finally got the message. I heard a great quote once “ erfumes and colognes should be discovered, not announced.” f course, it s not ust scents that can raise questions in your interviewer s mind. ne interviewee of mine pulled a fingernail file out during the meeting, and began cleaning her fingernails. That s not appropriate anywhere, but least of all a ob interview. ne candidate brought a cup of co ee we had o ered her in the waiting room into the interview. he took a drink, and a few seconds later, a small stream of co ee came out of her lips and


happening. Awkward! on t drink anything during an interview.

nother candidate brought in a notepad and a really cheap ic pen. uring the interview, he would chew on top of the pen. The pen already had chew marks on it. e was applying for a managerial role. e didn t get the ob. If you are going to take notes, buy the nicest note pad and pen you can a ord... and please, don t chew on things. peaking of chewing. t a country club lunch meeting, the company president and I were interviewing a very high level candidate. e was REALLY en oying some chewing gum, and when the servers brought our plates out, he put his wad of chewing gum on the side of the lovely china plate. That ust didn t add much to the ambiance or the interview. e didn t get the ob. eing late for an interview or business meeting doesn t set a great tone. If you have a am meeting, get there minutes prior. Leave early, allow for tra c. If you are applying for a position, for heavens sake, please double check your r sum . othing is a quicker turn o than sending a cover letter that you ust sent to another company. heck and double check for typos and accuracy. I am ama ed at how few people call or follow up to make sure their application was received and didn t get into “spam” mail. nd ask for an opportunity to meet. If someone doesn t follow up, I assume they didn t want the position that badly. usiness is a contact sport. nd I love it. Many of my best friends and acquaintances came from networking and business development. Make a great first impression. ollow up. ollow through, and outhustle your competition. ere s wishing you much success

TOPS in Lexington | March 2021

Leaders in

HOME + GARDEN TOPS in Lexington | Sponsored Content


TOPS Leader in

KITCHEN DESIGN SOLUTIONS Architectural Kitchens and Baths BRENT RICHARDS 345 Lafayette Avenue, Lexington // 859-268-0800

According to Brent Richards, owner and AIA architect, his team specializes in space planning and cabinetry designs by balancing layout, family needs and product evolution. Creating spaces that are not only aesthetically pleasing but functionally superior is what AKB does best. As a native Lexingtonian, Richards finds doing business in the Bluegrass especially rewarding. He states, “being born and raised in Lexington, I have watched neighborhoods grow and evolve over the years. With the challenges of this past year, it is particularly important to positively impact the community by helping individuals create spaces they will enjoy living and working. Offering Kentucky made Mouser Cabinetry is an extra plus.”


TOPS Leader in

COUNTERTOPS Bluegrass Marble and Granite of Richmond LINDSAY GUZMAN 635.5 Big Hill Avenue, Richmond 859.575.1558 //

“Our company is always looking towards the future as far as new products and information,” says Bluegrass Marble and Granite Showroom Manager Lindsey Guzman. “When new cutting-edge items come on the market, we try them immediately so that our clients can have the luxury of the newest and best products anyone can offer. All of our employees take a course from Natural Stone Institute to increase their knowledge on our product and always stay ahead of the curve.” Guzman and the team at Bluegrass Marble and Granite love guiding people through the process of choosing from their vast variety of natural and manufactured stones, which includes granite, marble, quartz, porcelain, and Dekton. Guzman says her team is seeing a huge demand for porcelain countertops and shower walls. She says, “These products are the most durable materials on the market and are easily maintained.” Guzman says, “I feel inspired to help others design their dream homes when I see clients’ ecstatic reactions to the finished products we install.”

My husband and I love to travel. In our home we have a map where we pin all of the places we have been to together.


JUSTIN BARRIER 505 Euclid Ave, Lexington // 859.251.5119 //

TOPS Leader in


Of Lexington, Justin Barrier says, “It is the biggest small town, and I will always live here. That small-town vibe, along with social media platforms, breeds accountability to do a good job. This quickly filters out the competition that might give construction workers a bad name.” On the flipside, word of mouth can help a business grow into an industry leader, as is the case with Barrier Roofs. As the company’s owner, Barrier states, “The two most important things in the company are our client’s satisfaction and our employees.” Barrier Roofs also offer superior siding, gutters, masonry, and windows. Across the board, clients can expect an experienced team installing the highest quality materials at the most aggressive pricing. On what puts his company at the pinnacle of their field, Barrier says, “We don’t cut corners. We install a quality roofing shingle system. The exact same roof we install on your home is the same roof I have on my house on Tates Creek.”


TOPS Leader in

DREAM KITCHENS Kitchen Concepts CLAY LEAVELL 4001 Mall Road, Lexington

More people spending more time at home has resulted in booming business for Kitchen Concepts. According to Clay Leavell, owner and president, “With COVID, many families and homeowners are making an investment in their homes, which includes kitchen and baths.” Each job is customized to the client: “We do a questionnaire with all of our clients where we ask questions about their family lifestyle, cooking style, family members and understand how they use their kitchen along with their taste and style. This helps us to develop the perfect kitchen and bath design for their family.” This, along with their superior staff, has made Kitchen Concepts Lexington’s premier kitchen and bath designer. Leavell says, “Over the years, we’ve been very fortunate to receive many referrals. This has to do with our overall approach to 100% customer satisfaction. From the design phase to the final installation, our design team is with our clients every step of the way. It’s always great working with the amazing people of central Kentucky and making their kitchen and bath dreams a reality.”


TOPS Leader in


As owner of Calico Surveying, Josh Calico is proud to be a part of one of the oldest professions in history. “Our predecessors used chains, compasses, and poles to measure distances,” he explains. “Today, with technology improving rapidly, the modality of survey work changes significantly every few years. For example, today we use satellites, drones, and robotic instruments to gather data.” Along with advanced technology, Calico offers a level of personalized service and proactive communication with his clients, contractors, and colleagues that you can’t always expect from larger firms. Calico Surveying provides commercial and residential surveys, including ALTA/NSPS, farm and subdivision boundaries, among many others. Born and raised in Kentucky, Josh Calico and his company will always call Lexington home. He says, “I enjoy the people, the work, my colleagues, and our culture in Kentucky. I love being able to give back to the community that helped shape who I am today.”


TOPS Leader in


Clay Thomas, owner of BrickHouse Real Estate, is changing the brokerage experience for real estate agents. Alongside Lead Agent, Zoie Powers and Broker/Agent, Jess Noto, they are working to make sure BrickHouse becomes a household name. Clay wants to ensure that every situation their team faces is a win-win, and a learning experience. After being a part of the corporate world and large real estate franchise, Clay wanted to create a brokerage model that focused on helping agents earn more, without sacrificing the technology, support and training experiences offered by a big company. He says, “With many new technological advances in how we search for homes, and even how we buy and sell homes, we have to set ourselves apart and show that Realtors will always be necessary. We focus on local, and building relationships.” From regional rookie of the year in 2017 to opening his own brokerage in 2021, Clay doesn’t plan to rest on his laurels. He wants BrickHouse to stay on the cutting edge, evolving to deliver the best experience possible for his team and his clients.


TOPS Leader in

FINDING YOUR FOREVER HOME Crumbaugh Real Estate Group HEATHER NUTT, NATHAN DAILEY, ANDI MEFFORD, JODI WAGNER + CHRIS THOMPSON 103 East Main Street, Frankfort, KY 40601 502.875.5211 //

Family owned and in business since the 1970s, Crumbaugh Real Estate Group is a boutique Real Estate firm with a team that is entrenched in our community, experienced, and made up of seasoned professionals. Real Estate is one of several branches of this ever-expanding company. They also work in construction and development and are equipped with over 130 years of collective construction and development experience. This team combines stellar knowledge of the market with outstanding sourcing capabilities, giving homebuyers access to everything they need from one powerful source. The Crumbaugh drive towards providing the best customer service with a personal touch is unrivaled. The dynamic synergy that the group has developed shines through. “Our team works well together. It’s such a great environment,” says Heather Nutt, Director of Marketing. “We keep the focus on the clients,” says Chris Thompson, Principal and Managing Director of the company. “Annually, our team produces a high volume of real estate transactions. However, we still think of ourselves as a small firm and put all of our efforts into working one on one with our clients.”


TOPS Leader in


In 2021, the concrete industry is rock solid. According to Patrick McKenzie, “The entire home improvement industry is growing and so is decorative concrete. This is due, in part, to its durability as well as the wide range of colors, patterns, and textures that can be utilized to enhance the aesthetic of each property. It is a cost-effective way to add value, as well as functionality, to your home or business.” McKenzie, along with Craig Curtis and Diana McKenzie, owns Custom Edge Concrete. The company specializes in both residential and commercial concrete solutions, such as decorative landscape curbing, traditional and stamped patios, and various interior/exterior epoxy coatings. They also specialize in customer satisfaction. McKenzie says, “We are continually researching and utilizing the best materials, equipment, and techniques to produce a high-quality product that will look great and have lasting appeal. We also work with each customer to tailor a design that is customized to their unique needs. Our philosophy is to treat our customers the way that we would want to be treated.”

We’re big UK football fans and enjoy cheering on the CATS!


JUSTIN BARRIER 505 Euclid Ave, Lexington // 859.251.5119 //

TOPS Leader in

RESIDENTIAL WINDOWS Barrier Roofs and Windows

Barrier Roofs has long been at the top of the roofing game, but has recently become a leader in the window installation industry as well. Owner Justin Barrier says, “We started out as roofs in 2014, but our customers wished we did more. Now, our window department has exploded. It’s safe to say that if it’s nice out, we are likely putting windows in a new home in Central Kentucky.” Barrier Windows provides top quality window replacements for residences, as well window installation services for newly constructed. Their experienced window professionals will carefully measure your windows then discuss the multitude of energy-efficient designs they offer. On-trend black windows are in high demand with the Barrier team, and they can do them in any grid pattern the client desires. Barrier attributes much of the company’s success to his employees: “I love my team, and I tell them at every meeting. The culture is what I am trying to build. I believe if we build a great culture in-house, you will see that when we are in your home.”



TOPS Leader in


After spending several years in the industrial and transportation industries, James Franklin decided it was time to turn his energies to providing the state with a superior roofing service. His focus became ensuring homes and businesses were protected from the elements, so families and business owners could, in turn, focus on what was important to them. Since, Franklin Roofing has established themselves as “Central Kentucky’s most dedicated residential and commercial roofing company.” According to Franklin, “The most important lesson we have learned in business is to work together, communicate, and strive to give each client the very best experience they can possibly have with our company.” Prior to opening the company, Franklin worked his way up as a salesman in the roofing industry, educating himself about the business, the best products, and how to most effectively serve clients. When the time came to establish his own company, Franklin went through extensive training seminars and numerous certifications, as well as continued on-the-job training so his customers can rest easy, knowing they have a properly installed roofing system that will last for years to come. He and his staff continue to participate in ongoing education with Owens Corning in the latest roofing techniques, installation, product knowledge, and awareness—all to better serve their clientele, who they consider family. Franklin Roofing also has specifically trained team members that specialize in commercial roof maintenance. Franklins states, “When you place a service request with Franklin Roofing Company you are getting a continuously trained, specialized, and uniformed Franklin Roofing employee who knows how to get the job done right.” Franklin Roofing specializes in the repair and replacement of roofing, gutters, and siding as well as emergency services when inclement weather or wild winds take their toll. No matter what the job, be it a complete new roof, a replacement, or a smaller repair, clients can feel confident knowing Franklin Roofing only uses “top-notch material and highly skilled crews to get the job done right, the first time.” To further provide peace of mind, Franklin uses weather-rated products with the roofing system warranty. In closing, Franklin states, “What you want is the best workmanship for an affordable price and that is what we deliver. Our team of roofers has been professionally installing and repairing roofs in Kentucky for more than 15 years. Be it shingle roofs, flat, metal or gutters, we offer fast reliable service with a personal touch.”


TOPS Leader in

HOME REMODELING J&R Construction JIMMY MCKINNEY 633 W.Main Street, Lexington, KY

J&R Construction has a mission that goes beyond just remodeling a beautiful home. President Jimmy McKinney defines the company’s goal as “to help others achieve their dreams, build wealth, and also to create jobs.” As an award-winning design, build, and home remodeling company, with locations in both Lexington and Owensboro, the focus is on relationships and providing exceptional communication. The team, of professional interior designers, project managers, carpenters, and craftsmen, is dedicated to helping clients envision their project. They guide clients in selections, and hand-holding throughout the process. For the future of his industry, McKinney states, “Home remodeling continues to grow, and the outlook continues to show growth for the foreseeable future. The national average age of a house is around 40 years old and will continue to get older, as there is not enough new construction to outpace the current inventory of homes. This will continue to create jobs, build equity and security for many years to come.”

I went to the National Junior Olympics for the 1/2 mile when I was 12 -years-old!


TOPS Leader in


Kentucky Concrete Coatings refurbishes and beautifies concrete flooring for residential and industrial customers, with oneday installation. Their business philosophy is simple: “Say what you will do and do what you say, every time.” In recent years, brothers Robert Ferguson and David Ferguson have found a more effective way to do just that with Penntek polymer coatings, guaranteed to last for 15 years. “We’ve watched the technology change in floor coatings from epoxies to long lasting polymers. Polymers have replaced epoxy coatings because of their long-term durability and lasting beauty. Getting a warranty with every floor coating will ensure your house or business has an attractive and usable floor for many years to come. We are happy to provide the industry’s best product and stand behind our product.” One thing that the Kentucky Concrete Coatings team loves about Lexington is “the people we have met. Everyone has a story, and their stories are now a part of us.”

We played doubles tennis at Bardstown High School and both graduated from UK!


TOPS Leader in

EDUCATION DESIGN ARCHITECTS JRA Architects ERIC P. STEVA, AIA, LEED AP BD + C 3225 Summit Square Place, #200 Lexington, KY 40509

This year, JRA Architects is celebrating its 75th anniversary. The firm’s longevity and its multitude of repeat clients are directly linked to its philosophy. According to Eric Steva, architect and project manager, “We insist that our architecture is not exclusive; it’s inclusive. It embraces our clients and their ideas—shaping their vision and desire into something that achieves a higher degree of meaning than mere bricks and mortar.” JRA Architects designs spaces ranging from schools to hospitals to commercial/industrial buildings and beyond. Having spent 22 years focusing strictly on the K-12 educational school market, Steva is deeply dedicated to ensuring his projects positively impact our children. He says, “Helping to create better learning environments for students across the state of Kentucky is what motivates me to be a better leader each day. These students are our future, and they deserve the best designed and built schools possible for the teachers to teach in and students to learn in.” “The spirit for JRA’s work emanates not from the scope of a project, but from the impact we make,” Steva says. “We’re driven by our clients’ passion and the positive outcomes we collectively hope to achieve.”


TOPS Leader in

DOWNTOWN REAL ESTATE DEVELOPMENT Lexington’s Real Estate Company PHIL HOLOUBEK 333 W. Vine Street, Ste.300, Lexington //

Lexington’s Real Estate Company is a pioneer in forward-thinking yet community-minded downtown development. Phil Holoubek, founder and president, says, “I think our goals might be different than some other real estate investors. Our goals include forgoing some financial reward in return for having the opportunity to bring housing to Lexington’s great downtown neighborhoods.” To date, the company has developed almost $100 million of infill, mixed-use projects, including hundreds of residential units and nearly 100,000 square feet of commercial space for clients and LRC ownership alike. Holoubek sees a long-range rising demand. He says, “Over 72% of people want to live in a walkable community, and that percentage is increasing every year. So creating great neighborhoods with ‘complete streets’ that have room for walkers, bikers, cars, and sidewalk cafes is a trend that will only get stronger. Holoubek mentiones their most rewarding project would have to be their involvement in a project owned by Community Ventures, The MET. Through the vision of Community Ventures CEO, Kevin Smith, and so many oher amazing residents of Lexington’s East End neighborhood, the result is a combination of amazing new retail space and 44 brand new apartments. Of success, Holoubek states, “It takes a village. And it should. That’s the fun part.”


TOPS Leader in

AFFORDABLE HOUSING Lexington Housing Authority ANDREA WILSON + ALDEAN PLEASANT 300 W. New Circle Road, Lexington //

Andrea Wilson & Aldean Pleasant of the Lexington Housing Authority (LHA) share one motivation: to provide positive outcomes for families in need. Wilson, who serves as chief operating officer, says, “I believe my years of experience in varied roles and responsibilities have provided me with versatility and knowledge to have an impact in the affordable housing arena. I believe being open to unconventional approaches to addressing affordable housing issues is key to making an impact in this industry.” Pleasant, the organization’s housing choice voucher program manager, echoes this sentiment: “I put myself in others’ shoes and with empathy for their situations, I am able to relate to situations that may be otherwise unrelatable. I find success in the success of those we serve.” Since the 1930’s, LHA has provided affordable housing to low- and moderate-income families in Lexington. Currently, the LHA owns and/or manages more than 1,300 affordable housing units and administers the Housing Choice Voucher Program (HCV) that serves approximately 3,200 participant families each month. Pleasant credits 36 years of experience in affordable housing programs with granting her 20/20 vision in assessing needs and solutions. She states, “I’ve seen a number of programs mandated through the years, some of which have been successful in their intended goals and those that have been revamped or eliminated for various reasons. I’ve learned to accept change while always seeking practicality in everyday circumstances.” Wilson, who oversees an operations budget of approximately $30 million, has watched regulations continuously change, but keeps her focus steadfast on the mission to provide affordable housing in the Lexington community. She states, “I am motivated when I see families succeed to secure and maintain their housing. I’m encouraged knowing that safe and secure housing will allow for improvement in other areas of their lives.” In addition to families, LHA also contributes to the city’s economy. Each month LHA’s HCV program infuses approximately $1.8 million into the Lexington community in rent payments to landlords and utility payments. Wilson and Pleasant both believe one of the qualities a leader must have is the willingness to listen to others. Wilson states, “The most valuable lesson I’ve learned in business is that you never stop learning. It is important to be open to learning from others and listening.” Pleasant adds, “I find it most important to always be open-minded and flexible and be prepared to hear both sides of any story.”



TOPS Leader in

SELLER EXPERIENCE MELIA Realty Group MELIA HORD 854 E High Street, Lexington 859-517-5900 // #justaskmelia

Few understand Lexington’s Real Estate industry like Melia Hord. Melia, a Top Producing agent, is the owner and lead agent of MELIA Realty Group. She understands the thought process and questions of a homeowner who is getting ready to list their property. She says, “When you choose to work with us, you’re not just getting agents who use the best tools and technology to sell your property for the most amount of money in the least amount of time. You’re getting transparency and instant communication throughout the entire process, so you can relax knowing every detail is taken care of. Selling your property is a big decision, so it’s important to work with agents you can trust to get the job done perfectly.” The decision to buy or sell a home is a big financial investment, and Melia ensures that her clients are well-advised throughout the process so they can make the best decisions for themselves and their families.


TOPS Leader in


Craig Rushing, owner of rc3, inc., has been creating residential and small commercial projects for over 25 years, providing a unique service to his clientshe is both the Architect AND the builder. He calls his style “small batch Architecture,” a nod to the bourbon industry’s carefully crafted batches. Rushing says, “From napkin sketch to completion of construction, my clients only need to know one phone number. I am very good at collaborating with my clients, which gives them a sense of ownership in the finished product.” Rushing is skilled with many design styles, which is evident in his portfolio of work. From modern homes, to luxurious venues, to renovations on historic homes in Chevy Chase, his attention to detail is unparalleled. His creations are built with more than aesthetics in mind, Rushing also sources materials that have a low impact on the environment, and incorporates energy-efficient strategies that don’t sacrifice comfort.

Rushing is currently renovating a house that was built in 1815!


TOPS Leader in

LUXURY SENIOR LIVING Preston Greens Senior Living TIFFANEY CLAY 1825 Little Herb Way, Lexington 859.687.8156

In her role as Executive Director at Preston Greens Senior Living, Tiffaney Clay has learned the importance of leading with purpose. She says, “I’ve had the pleasure for the last 20 years to impact people’s lives on a daily basis. I wake up every morning with a streamlined purpose: to make an aging senior’s day better.” Preston Greens Senior Living is a luxury senior living community that “allows seniors to age in place in a resort atmosphere” with a full calendar of daily activities, ranging from art to cooking classes to catching a film in the onsite movie theater. Nurses, handpicked by Clay, are on staff 24 hours a day. Clay, pictured here with resident Nettie Bingham, elaborates, “Our community is among the most luxurious in Lexington, but also provides excellent care and services. Our nursing leadership has many years of experience, combined with compassionate care. Our community is a culmination of a gorgeous environment, caring staff, and wonderful residents.” She adds, “We are booming! We live each day to the fullest.”

Tiffaney, her husband, four kids, and two fur babies are working on visiting all 50 states for their bucket list!


TOPS Leader in

LUXURY REAL ESTATE Suzanne Elliott Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices 859.806.6234

Suzanne Elliott was the number one listing agent in residential sales volume and units sold for homes valued at $750,000+ during the last decade, according to the LexingtonBluegrass Association of Realtors, and has been honored as the ‘#1 Top Producer’ in her company for 22 years. She says, “During my 35 years in the real estate business, I have learned the unique requirements of clients in the luxury market. “ Despite her wealth of experience, Elliott says, “I believe that you should never stop learning, so I have attended hundreds of classes and seminars throughout my career. But, I have learned the most by working with clients and listening carefully to their needs.” When asked what propelled her to the top of her field, she says, “My love of the business and the joy I derive from educating clients about real estate. This has helped me develop many wonderful relationships over the years. I have helped many clients purchase and sell ‘high end’ properties, but I also work with people in all price ranges and stages of their life. I truly enjoy helping everyone.”


TOPS Leader in

CONTINUING CARE RETIREMENT COMMUNITIES Sayre Christian Village KAREN VENIS 3775 Belleau Wood Drive, Lexington

For over 35 years, Sayre Christian Village has served Central Kentucky’s aging population. CEO Karen Venis says, “We are very much a mission-driven organization and are always looking for ways to ‘level up’ on campus. Whether you live here, give here, work here, or serve here, we want it to be a ‘great place to call home.’” From their 27-acre campus, Sayre Christian Village provides a continuum of care, including independent living, assisted living, short and long term skilled nursing care, rehabilitation services, and specialized memory care for older adults. Sayre Christian Village is the only nonprofit continuing-care senior living community in Fayette County. In addition to a $9 million expansion to their assisted living facility, they recently announced that they will be adding an Assisted Living Memory Care Community. In closing, Venis reiterates, “At Sayre Christian Village, it’s not a job, it’s a mission. It is easy to come to work when you love what you do and what your ministry stands for. It is also motivating to work along so many heroes who share the same vision as I do.”


TOPS Leader in

NEW CONSTRUCTION SPECIALISTS Dalton-Emrich Group DIANA EMRICH + VANESSA DALTON 209 E High Street, Ste.102, Lexington

As REALTORS™ who not only list and sell, but also work in design and construction (representing Artique Custom Homes and DaltonBuilt Homes), Diana Emrich and Vanessa Dalton are up to any task. They explain, “There is no real estate challenge too big for us. Our clients invest in more than personal homes. We represent existing homes, new construction, farms, land, and commercial properties. We also work on renovations.” The pair is committed to bringing their shared expertise to every client. “We insist on offering personal service and never turn over our clients to staff. We believe our years of experience and highly developed skills are what our clients expect from us—not staff or junior agents.” They are also dedicated to helping clients navigate the changing landscape. They state, “Home is changing drastically, as we all spend more time there. We have maximum tools to help either update and refurbish existing homes or custom design and build from the ground up. We are adept at reimagining existing homes to help bring them into today’s lifestyles.”

The only conflict the two of us have is over UK vs UofL!


TOPS Leader in

SAYING YES TO THE ADDRESS Sweet Home Ky Realty MACY MICHAEL + AMY BOONE 240 Southland Drive, Paris //

Mother and daughter duo, broker/realtor Amy Boone and realtor Macy Michael are continuing the legacy of the family business with Sweet Home KY Realty. Boone explains, “I grew up in a family-owned and operated business. I learned my work ethic and what it takes to be successful from my parents.” Now, she is using this knowledge to guide Kentuckians through the process of buying or selling their home from start to finish. Boone says, “While real estate is a very technological business, it is also a very personal business. I can’t imagine someone buying the biggest investment of their life without a skilled professional at their side.” By combining technology with this personal touch, Sweet Home enables you to complete the entire home buying/selling process without leaving the comfort of your current house—from the virtual consultation and property tours through financing to having the keys to your new residence hand delivered.


TOPS Leader in

PROFESSIONAL PAINTING My Three Sons Professional Painting Services KEITH ZAFREN 765 Lane Allen Road, Lexington // 859-321-7344 //

At My Three Sons, the goal is to create raving fans, not just satisfied customers. According to Owner and Founder, Keith Zafren, “We exist to create the happiest customers on the planet! We do that by providing the most professional and exceptional painting and remodeling services to all our residential and commercial customers with the highest degree of responsibility, reliability, and integrity.” Part of going the extra mile for clients is providing professionalism from start to finish with reliable, experienced teams who value communication, care, and cleanliness on the job site. Further, they offer a legitimate 5-year guarantee—not just a sales promise. Zafren says, “I love making customers happy and bringing their dreams to reality, while also providing meaningful employment to many skilled craftsmen. It fulfills me to lead a growing business that is making an impact in the greater Lexington area for thousands of customers.” Zafren also loves Lexington. “I love that the area is big enough to sustain a growing company like mine but small enough that it does not feel like a big city with all the impersonal effects that come with that,” he says.

I was a pastor for 23 years and have my Master’s Degree in Biblical Studies from Asbury Seminary in Wilmore. I founded The Great Dads Project and wrote the award-winning book, How to Be a Great Dad - No Matter What Kind of Father You Had.



Communication Etiquette

OR HOW TO WIN FRIENDS AND INFLUENCE PEOPLE IN THE MIDST OF OUR "NEW NORMAL" by Peter Chawaga er a year unlike any in recent memory, many of us are le confronting a new normal in nearly every aspect of our lives. oing out for date night, sending the kids to school, picking up groceries things are ust di erent. nd, among it all, one area of our lives that was never easy to understand has become even less so the etiquette of business communications. ith many o ces going remote, the balance between work and life ad usting and plenty of people seeking new employment, we wanted to help our readers wrestle with the changing rules of professional engagement. That s why we ve compiled this updated list of the dos and don ts of business communication, to hold your hand through the weeds of LinkedIn, guide your next oom appearance and generally inspire you to put your best business foot forward into the new normal.

inally, there s one social media platform that is, more than any other, strictly business. LinkedIn is designed to foster business connections, demonstrate past experiences to new employers and facilitate business communication. o make the most of the platform, make sure that your LinkedIn profile is up to date with your industry, location, a captivating summary and your business experience. haring engaging content about your field, giving recommendations and endorsements to colleagues and staying active in LinkedIn groups are all ways to demonstrate to prospective employers that your work is your passion. nd be sure to leverage LinkedIn s built in obs board if you are actively seeking employment it s an easy way to leverage your social media presence and polished profile directly as you submit applications. s our real world identities and social media profiles become even more closely intertwined, you ll be glad you re LinkedIn.

Get Social (Media) If you re one of the final holdouts who hasn t created an account on the ma or social media platforms, we respect your devotion. ut if you re looking to forge new business connections or strengthen the ones you already have, it is time to give in. More than years since acebook was first launched, nearly every ma or social media platform including witter, Instagram and, of course, LinkedIn is considered a public forum where one would expect to run into a business colleague and one would hope that business colleague is dressed appropriately and not shouting about controversial topics. ou probably don t need to be active on every platform, but you can assume that a new business contact will oogle you and hope to find your profiles. ou ll want them to be impressed by what they find there. egardless of the platform, make sure that your profile picture shows you in a positive light. If you re actively looking for business connections, you ll also want to make sure that your avatar is recogni able as you a stunning version of you, that is . e careful about what you post what might seem like a measured or nuanced take to you could be controversial for a prospective employer. nd remember that sharing or amplifying the messages of others o en appears as an endorsement of their views.

Don’t Hesitate To Handwrite It might seem like the days of sitting down to put pen to paper are long gone, but that is precisely why a handwritten thank you note can be such a strong form of business communication now. andwritten thank yous are great as follow ups to interviews, sales or subscriptions and they are o en the most meaningful way of demonstrating appreciation out of all analog options. “ ure and simple, a heartfelt handwritten note expressing your gratitude for their business works wonders,” avid lowich of business consulting firm erra irma Leadership LL , recently told orbes. “ i s, swag and other trinkets ust do not measure up.” It has probably been a long time since many of us sat down to write an actual note, so it s worth asking hat makes a good, handwritten business note these days sing clean, simple stationary with your professional contact information will help your contacts remember you and your branding. ou ll want to be concise and specific a er all, time is money . nd, above all, these messages should be authentic and come from your heart.

As our real-world identities and social media profiles become even more closely intertwined, you’ll be glad you’re LinkedIn.

March 2021 |


When In Doubt, DM Business has never been too personal, but the way that business is being conducted today can seem less personal than ever before. It may be impossible to enjoy a three-martini lunch or to deliver an elevator pitch inside an actual elevator anymore, but there are still some ways to make personal connections across our digital divides. If you’re looking to interface with a business connection oneon-one, you can consider sending a direct message (or “DM”) through Facebook Messenger, LinkedIn Messaging or another platform. On much of social media, you’ll need to be connected with someone before you’re able to send them a DM. If you request a connection and they accept, they re most likely interested in what you have to say. As with private conversations in person, you’ll want to think through how formal or personable the tone should be based on who exactly you’re speaking with. But remember: it can be di cult to convey sarcasm or other conversational subtleties through cyberspace (and either party can take screenshots of the messages, too).

Zoom Your Way To The Top As restrictions on in-person gatherings forced people to meet virtually, the video conferencing platform Zoom has become the default portal for business communication. From February to April last year, the company made $328 million — more than double its revenue from the same period in 2019. With so many new users pushed to the platform (or to video conferencing in general , there are some new etiquette guidelines worth keeping in mind. Video conferencing platforms typically give users the ability to appear via video or to hide behind a black screen or other static image, and to turn on and o their microphones at will. ou ll want to watch your microphone closely, lest you let something slip that you meant to keep to yourself or begin a presentation without anyone being able to hear you. It’s a good idea to mute yourself as soon as you join a meeting (Zoom also gives you the option to automatically enter meetings on mute). And if you’re running a meeting, you might ask participants to all mute at the beginning until they need to chime in. hile you can choose to leave your camera o , it s better to participate as if you were in person: camera on, dressed professionally (at least from the waist up), appearing attentive and otherwise as you would in an o ce setting. It s also possible that some workplaces will require that their employees attend remote meetings with their cameras on, so be ready. Be sure to set up with an attractive but undistracting background


with good lighting, and consider investing in an external camera for your computer (a typical built-in laptop webcam provides a 720p resolution format, while an external camera with 1080p resolution can be had for about it makes a big di erence .

Avoid The Blasé In Your Resumé Though social media profiles may be more commonplace than they once were, a good, old fashioned resum is still a requisite when applying for a new job. But that doesn’t mean that your resumé should look old fashioned. Take a cue from LinkedIn and consider formatting your resumé with a personal summary at the top, something that engages the reader and succinctly describes your professional passions and top level qualifications before diving into your previous experience. Including a professional headshot is also a great way of branding your resumé at a time when job openings are receiving more applicants than ever. When submitting a resumé digitally, be sure to send it as a PDF file if possible. This will ensure that your formatting remains consistent on any device. It’s also possible to embed hyperlinks to assets online, like social profiles or work examples, through a . ny ma or word processing so ware, like Microso ord or Google Docs, provides the option of exporting a document as a PDF.

The Gift Of GIFing As work life and home life mix, there’s always the danger that one s business communication etiquette will become too informal. But there’s also an opportunity to express more of your personality, to make work more fun and to leverage the latest communications tools in creative ways. Enter the GIF. I or “ raphics Interchange ormat” file is an animated image, set on a loop of a few seconds. Most major messaging platforms allow users to search, select and send GIFs easily. But are they appropriate for work? The answer is That depends. esponding to an internal email about weekly sales growth? Feel free to send a round of applause GIF. Sending a prospecting email to a potential new client? Probably best to keep it formal and skip the GIF. Like so many other nuances within our new normal, the answer to the immortal question “to I or not to I ” depends on the details of the situation and is ultimately le up to your best udgement. ou know your workplace, your colleagues and your communication style best, so you’ll know when it’s time to bend the old rules and when they still hold true.

TOPS in Lexington | March 2021

ACCORDING TO A RECENT SURVEY ABOUT VIDEO CONFERENCING: One out of 10 people wear only underwear below the waist during video conference calls. Men were three times more likely to be the culprits.



(sources: Fishbowl, Highfive)

Fa c

Around 59% of people say they feel more self-conscious on camera than in real life. That might be why a third of people reported that they spent more than half of the call looking at their own face.


More than three-quarters of respondents said that they wear pajamas, sweats, shorts or leggings during video conference calls. (Or their tighty-whities, apparently!)

March 2021 |


Leaders in


TOPS in Lexington | Sponsored Content

TOPS Leader in

FINE GIFTS My Favorite Things THOMAS ULSHAFER 2721 Old Rosebud Road, Lexington

Since 2005, My Favorite Things has been the place to go for gifts and home décor in Lexington.The store has since added fine furniture and custom interior design services to the mix. Growing to meet clients’ needs is one reason for their lasting success. On what sets the store apart, President of Retail Operations Thomas Ulshafer says, “The variety of gift shops within one 10,000 square foot store as well as our vendor selection and quality of home furnishings. The merchandizing is unique for retail. And, of course, there is the pride we have in satisfied customers.” Ulshafer, who is also creative director of Forcht Group of Kentucky, predicts, “More than ever, the local brick and mortar retail store will need to be more knowledgeable, provide exceptional customer service, build strong relationships, and offer unique products and services, along with having an engaging internet presence. The ability to adapt—sometimes even daily—and evolve will be key for future success.”

I created floral designs seen in the movie Secretariat!


TOPS Leader in

FRESH FLORAL DESIGN Alexandra Pallos Floral & Events ALEXANDRA PALLOS 220 Big Run Rd # 7, Lexington // 859.533.0646 //

One of the things Alexandra Pallos loves about the floral design business is its ever-changing nature. “What I love about floral design is that it is an artform, and it is always evolving and growing. The only limit is one’s own imagination.” Pallos specializes in weddings and events, providing floral masterpieces that range from whimsical and romantic to sleek and modern. She says, “I create each floral arrangement myself, so there is a lot of thought and love that goes into making each one.” Pallos is proud that she had the guts to switch careers and start her business from scratch nearly two years ago. “I followed my passion and wasn’t afraid to work hard to make my dream a reality,” she says. Pallos also teaches floral design classes to the public. She says, “Teaching is a passion of mine, as is bringing people together, so having floral design classes where private groups can gather to enjoy food and drinks and then learn how to make something beautiful is something I absolutely love doing.”


TOPS Leader in

AMERICAN CASUAL DINING Carson’s Food & Drink KYLE ZIMMERMAN 362 E Main Street, Lexington // 859.309.3039

As the general manager of Carson’s Food & Drink, Kyle Zimmerman says, “From the host stand to the dish tank, I am involved at every step. My goal is to ensure that all guests have the extraordinary experience that they deserve and expect from Carson’s.” Carson’s offers the perfect blend of “a rustic, yet refined concept with chef-driven recipes paired with prohibition cocktails, hand-selected wines and craft beers” making it the perfect fit for Lexington’s love of casual, yet upscale dining. After being in the city for a decade, Zimmerman states, “Lexingtonians have come to expect elevated food and drinks and actively seek that out.” Carson’s bar also boasts the best bourbon selection at the best prices in town. For Zimmerman, it’s all about giving customers an unforgettable meal every time. He says, “We give people an experience that they won’t soon forget. From the moment they walk in our doors, they feel at home. From our uniue decor, using leather, wood, brick and elegant chandeliers balanced with industrial materials, to our outstanding food and perfectly prepared cocktails, you’re sure to become a regular.” In addition, Carson’s is a proud Green Check Member, meaning they actively take part in green initiatives and recycling programs.

Carson’s, Casual Elegance in a rustic yet refined atmosphere. Great Food - Great Drinks - Great Service.


TOPS Leader in


JESSICA, RIGOBERTO, + MARIA RIOS 144 Burt Road, Lexington //

El Rancho Tapatio is a local family owned and operated restaurant offering delicious, fresh made food. Founded in 2009, the restaurant started as three small tables and has expanded into their Burt Road home. Their authentic food is described as “Not your everyday Mexican cuisine.” El Rancho Tapatio embraces being a part of the local restaurant community by participating in and sponsoring nonprofit events throughout the year. The Rios family, who operate the restaurant, are from Guadaajara, Mexico. In Spanish, el Tapatio is an informal term for someone from Guadalajara. El Rancho Tapatio specializes in Taqueria style tacos, and other favorites like Sopes, Gorditas, Empanadas, Ceviche, Tortas Ahogadas, Carnes en su Jugo, Menudo, delicious drinks and more. Diners enjoy delicious tacos, tostadas, burritos, fajitas and an array of exquisite Mexican dishes that transport them to a little corner of Guadalajara with each bite. Like many local restaurants, El Rancho Tapatio succeeded this past year because they adapted to provide more carryout and delivery, and made the most of their space with socially distanced dining.


TOPS Leader in

HIGH PERFORMANCE GOLF High Performance Golf LARRY WARD + TYRUS YORK 5600 Harrodsburg Road, Nicholasville

Larry Ward and Tyrus York, owners of High Performance Golf Academy, have their sites set on becoming the most comprehensive golf academy in America. They’ll accomplish this by pairing their highly-trained instructors with the latest technology to provide topnotch coaching for golfers of all skill levels. They also offer state-of-the-art club fitting, to ensure students are using equipment that fits them properly. During his 20 plus years of teaching golf, Ward has conducted more than 24,000 golf lessons, coaching students at every level from beginner to the PGA and LPGA Tours, and garnered a slew of teaching awards. York became a Class A PGA Professional Member in 2010. In 2016, the two-time Kentucky Section PGA Teacher of the Year was named head coach of the women’s golf team at Transylvania University. Motivated by the continuing education and success of the players they coach, both Ward and York see a solid future for the academy with exceptional growth.



TOPS Leader in

FINE DINING EXPERIENCE Jeff Ruby’s Steakhouse JEFF RUBY 101 W Vine Street, Lexington // 859.554.7000 //

In 1981, soon after opening his first restaurant, The Precinct, Jeff Ruby realized that guests didn’t patronize the place simply because they were hungry. Ruby explains, “They could’ve just gone to their refrigerators if they were hungry. They were coming to my place to celebrate life and I was going to give them a total culinary and entertainment experience unlike any other so they could do just that. Almost four decades later, we strive to do the exact same thing every night.” With the opening of Jeff Ruby’s Steakhouse in downtown, Lexingtonians are now relishing “The Jeff Ruby Experience,” which Ruby describes as “a unique combination of elements like ambiance, culinary expertise, décor, music, hospitality, rhythm and flow, sense of arrival, service, and so much more.” This experience has drawn national attention. According to their website, Jeff Ruby’s Steakhouse has garnered awards such as OpenTable’s Top 100 Steakhouses In America; Travel + Leisure’s Top American Steakhouses; and USA Today’s Best American Steakhouses, among many others. Ruby credits the origin of his success to his high school football coach and mentor, Jeep Bednarik, who took an interest in him after Ruby fled from a troubled home and became self-sufficient at the age of 15. Ruby says, “He taught me the value of striving to become a better person, hard work and more. I wanted to make him proud. As a result of his mentorship, I went from failing grades to straight A’s. From not winning a wrestling match my sophomore year to not losing one my senior year. From riding the bench to All-State football honors and a scholarship to Cornell University. He is one of the single greatest influences I’ve had in my life.” Now, Ruby has moved into the mentor role and is passing his positive influence down through his employees to his guests. According to Ruby, “In the restaurant business, everything is important, but perhaps nothing more so than making our guests feel really important. The only way to make that happen is to make our employees our most important thing. If we offer them extraordinary opportunities, they’ll offer our guests extraordinary experiences. When we make an emotional connection with our employees, they make an emotional connection with the guests they serve. I would’ve never been successful if my employees didn’t want me to be.” Ruby also gives back through The Jeff Ruby Foundation which aims to alleviate childhood poverty by first addressing challenges faced by the most vulnerable population in our community - those without parents as well as those in the current foster care system.

“In the restaurant business, nothing is more important than making our guests feel really important.”


TOPS Leader in

MEN’S SUITS AND SPORTCOATS Logans of Lexington JAMIE BURCH, CONNOR HOBBS + DARRELL MCCARTY 161 Lexington Green Circle #14, Lexington // 859.273.5766 //

Good taste is timeless…but not effortless, which is why for over 55 years, Logan’s of Lexington has been outfitting Kentucky’s style-conscious gentlemen. Founder, Harlan Logan, stood by two guiding principles—always believe in the product you are selling and always provide the best service you can. The store offers a selection of over 2000 suits and sport coats, from top designers including Hart Schaffner Marx, Jack Victor, Hickey Freeman, Ralph Lauren and Baroni, ensuring there is something for every man for every occasion. And, at Logan’s, it all begins with the perfect fit. The sales staff is skilled in providing the best fit possible, either off the rack or made to measure. And, if you’re in a hurry, Logan’s even offers same day, in-store tailoring! To what do they attribute their longevity? In the words of the sales team, “Without a doubt, personal service and taking pride in each and every outfit we send out the door. Whether a first suit, a job interview, a wedding suit or whatever the occasion, we will work hard to help you look your best. We have a relaxed atmosphere in our store, and it is a fun environment to work, as well as to shop.”

Logan’s opened in 1964 in Midway, KY as a general department store. They relocated to Lexington in 1992, with a focus on me.


TOPS Leader in


Midnite Rooster is a small, friend-and-family owned, Kentucky-proud business based out of Lexington. Utilizing the finest USDA Certified, organically grown hemp that our state has to offer, it is their mission to provide results-driven CBD products for customers at extremely affordable prices. The founders say their motto, “Strut Your Stuff,” stems from a pursuit of that feeling of freedom of being the best you possible. Oftentimes, pain or stress gets in the way of you living life to your full potential, and they offer something that can help you overcome those hurdles. “We are the only CBD brand whose entire product lineup is both USDA Organic and Kentucky Proud.” At the heart of the company is an ethos centered around regeneration. The Midnite Rooster hemp farm includes produce rotations and livestock as part of their larger vision of healing. The name embodies the tireless, around- the- clock- approach the team takes to wellness and speaks to our holistic outlook on health.



TOPS Leader in

LIFESTYLE FURNITURE Lexington Furniture Co. & Market on National

Over this past year, our homes have also become our offices, schools, spas, and date night destinations. Having a stylish sanctuary from the chaos of the outside world proved more important than ever. For over 60 years, Lexington Furniture Company has enabled Kentuckians to furnish their homes with the nation’s top brands and bring ease and elegance to their lifestyle. According to owner Hugh James, “Styles change, trends come and go, but Lexington furniture will always be the leader in quality and fashion.” The company prides itself on its vast selection, superior quality, and exceptional value. Lexington Furniture can fulfill all your furniture needs, including the furnishings you need to set up a home office that goes from just functional to fabulous with sophisticated desks and desk chairs, fine wood computer credenzas, and file cabinets that look more like family heirlooms. Lexington Furniture also offers the opportunity to purchase right off the floor for seamless transactions.


When you visit their showroom, expect the VIP treatment. James says, “We have the experience and expertise to help our customers create their own personal look with the quality we offer. Our goal is to create a pleasant buying experience for our customers.” While there, make sure to step next door and peruse Market on National, which specializes in casual, lifestyle furniture and unique, artisan home décor. If you find something you simply can’t leave without, no problem; at Market on National, you can buy straight off-the-floor. Their knowledgeable staff, including designer Michelle Jimenez, will guide you to the perfect purchase. Jimenez says, “Beautiful homes and happy customers motivate us the most to excel in our business. Our job is to source quality pieces at a fair price and lead our customers to the right product for their home. We help clients feel good and proud of the home they live in.” In-home design services are available to customers from both locations from a talented team of designers. On what he has learned over these past six decades, James states, “You have to be honest and true to your word. You have to give your customer relevant information so they can make an informed decision.” On that note, he adds, “I would like to thank all the customers that we have had throughout the years. We look forward to continue serving the greater Lexington area.”



TOPS Leader in

LUXURY LIVING Norwalk Furniture BRYANT STANLEY, KELLIE CLARKE, JUSTIN MORRIS + TAWANA PALMER 2200 War Admiral Way, Lexington // 859.263.0322 //

“Dream, Design, Reality” is the motto of Norwalk Furniture & Design. With a 3,500 square foot showroom and custom design center offering over 300 vendors from local to couture, no one is better equipped to take a client’s vision and bring it to fruition. This locally-owned and operated business, which boasts a full range of professional design services, stunning showroom store, and its own warehouse with a fleet of delivery trucks, could best be described as a design firm within a retail furniture store. Their passionate team of award-winning, professional designers will come to your home, business or venue and guide you through any venture, big or small. Norwalk is eager to accommodate any style and budget with its fine furniture, custom upholstery and bedding, window treatments, antique rugs and gifts. Between them, the owners and staff have degrees in design, communication and public relations degrees, as well as 15 years of business ownership and over 40 years of design experience, all working together to bring you “modern design with southern charm.” Owners Kellie Clarke, Justin Morris, Tawana Palmer and Bryant Stanley bring their elegant aesthetic, community connections and straightforward approach to business to the company, as well as BBB accreditation. When it comes to leading a company, these “design quadruples” say, “It is all about building relationships, enjoying people, loving creativity, being confident, being a great listener…and, in the end, that your client will be happy.” The team at Norwalk understands that being a leader in the fast paced, ever-changing field of fine furnishings entails knowing that “change is constant and flexibility is key.” Therefore they strive to always be on the “cusp of the latest style and design.” However, the design crew says they receive their greatest inspiration from the customers themselves—“We are newly inspired everyday by each and every lovely person that enters our showroom doors.” Norwalk believes what sets them apart is “the passion we have for people, originality of design, and the pursuit in our commitment to providing high quality products and exceptional service.” In closing, the Norwalk team stresses, “We always want to be welcoming, comforting and helpful. We never want anyone to feel intimidated to begin a design project or buy a sofa. We want to build relationships, forge pathways and develop generational homes and spaces for an array of budgets and tastes. We want everyone to know that this will be a seamless and painless experience. Our clients become our friends.”



TOPS Leader in

ENGAGEMENT RINGS Rivard Fine Jewelry BRANDON RIVARD 4101 Tates Creek Centre Drive, Ste.152, Lexington //

The most brilliant facet of Rivard Fine Jewelry is their superior customer service. According to secondgeneration owner Brandon Rivard, “I have found that treating every customer like they are your best customer is the key to success. I know how I like to be treated when conducting business, and nothing is more important at Rivard’s than making sure you’ve had an excellent shopping experience.” As an independently owned business, Rivard Fine Jewelry is not restricted the same way large box stores are; this enables them to entirely personalize service. Rivard says, “We can make decisions based on each individual customer’s needs to help them find the best product at the very best price without having to get approval from someone who isn’t even working in that store. We also have relationships and work with the absolute best jewelry designers and diamond/gemstone suppliers in the industry, which allows Rivard’s to offer our customers a far more superior quality product.” The company was founded in 1984 by Brandon’s grandparents, Russ and Beverly Rivard, along with his father, Mike. It began as an office for the Balfour Company, which specializes in class rings and graduation materials, with a small jewelry store in the front. Now, the spacious and sophisticated store offers a full spectrum of jewelry merchandise and services, including custom manufacturing and repair. Of course, where they really shine is engagement rings and bridal jewelry, with an in-store, multimillion-dollar inventory of diamonds and engagement ring settings. The store’s highly skilled jewelry professionals want to take the mystery out of the process and help you find the ideal stone. Rivard Fine Jewelry utilizes the latest technology to make the ring of your dreams come to life. Rivard says, “The fast and ever-growing technological advances in our industry are really changing the way we can manufacture jewelry. What we are able to do with CAD imagery and customization is just astonishing and is only getting better.” Rivard credits his father with inspiring him to become a leader in the jewelry industry: “There is not another person in the world that has supported and championed for me more. Watching him work to grow this business and his dedication to his family and colleagues is truly inspiring. Following in my father’s footsteps and continuing to grow the business that he started is one of my life’s greatest joys and a dream come true.”


TOPS Leader in

AFFORDABLE CONTEMPORARY FASHION Peplum DIANE HENSON + LAUREN WEST 824 Euclid Avenue #103, Lexington // 859.269.0009 //

We all want to look like a million bucks. But, what if you could look like a million for much less? Shop at Peplum and you can. Owner Lauren West says, “We work incredibly hard to source pieces that look and feel more expensive than they actually are. We want you to walk out of Peplum with a $100 dress that looks and feels like a dress that should cost $400.” The store, which offers on-trend, contemporary clothing at an affordable price (everything is priced under $150), is in the heart of the Chevy Chase shopping district. West says, “Chevy Chase has such a great network of female owned businesses. We do a lot of cross promoting to help support our neighbors.” With the increase of online shopping, Peplum promises a personal touch. Store manager Colleen Costello says, “Our passion is to instill confidence in women. We do that by building up our clients and treating them with kindness and respect while they are within our four walls. Our success at Peplum is proof that consumers still enjoy the personal and individualized attention that we provide during their shopping experience.” You can also shop their amazing collection 24/7 at


TOPS Leader in

STEAKS Tony’s Steaks and Seafood of Lexington TONY RICCI 401 W Main Street, Lexington // 859.955.TONY(8669) //

The mission of Tony’s Steaks and Seafood is simple—provide the best product and service at a reasonable price, while giving back to the community you are serving. Owner Tony Ricci elaborates, “We make such a strong impact on our guests that they trust us to visit a second time, then a third time and so on. The genuine attitude that we have in providing service, coupled with the humility that’s portrayed in its delivery, literally develops a personal/professional relationship with our guests making us a trusted source for dining. Tables are touched by our management team to ensure that we are living up to our standards.” This service model, along with their impeccable selection of fresh modern fare, is how the restaurant became such a big Lexington favorite in such a short time. Ricci says, “The way Lexingtonians greeted us and continue to support us is unsurpassed. It’s truly been a humbling experience that I know will continue for many years to come.” Ricci adds, “It’s a fun place to have dinner. We are not your typical chain steakhouse. Esthetically we provide an urban chic atmosphere that is welcoming and comfortable. Our service and quality are unparalleled.”

“Privileged to be here. Honored to serve you. Let’s become friends.”


Leaders in


TOPS in Lexington | Sponsored Content

CHRISTOPHER W. GOODE 389 Elaine Drive, Lexington //

TOPS Leader in


In describing himself as an attorney, Lexington native Christopher Goode says, “I’m not a bull in a china shop-type of lawyer. I believe in building lasting relationships with other lawyers, judges, and clients in hopes of making positive changes and outcomes.” Goode, who maintains a broad and diverse law practice ranging from small auto-accident cases to large catastrophic-injury cases, realizes his most valuable asset is his extensive experience. “I have tried injury cases to juries all over Kentucky,” he said. “I have also argued for changes to injury law before the Kentucky Supreme Court resulting in one of the most significant published cases in injury law in a generation.” Goode, who has been representing plaintiffs in injury cases since 2004, founded Goode Law Office, PLLC, to better serve his clients. He says, “I maintain a relatively small caseload so you will never just be a number at my firm.”


TOPS Leader in



The team at Studio46 Media wants clients to know this: “We are focused on being shooters, not suits. Everyone on our team pitches in and is willing to be involved in a project in whatever role is needed. This approach has paid off for Studio46 Media and the momentum is not going to stop anytime soon”


Studio46 Media is a one-stop shop for your company’s creative needs. With three divisions, each focusing on a different aspect of production—including video, live/virtual events, and creative services—they provide both stellar video production and live/ virtual event production. They focus on top-quality production to help capture viewer attention. According to Director Bryan Dowell one of the keys to their success is a “servant leadership mentality.” He says, “Our team is dedicated to serving the needs of our clients through relationships and treating each client and project with the uttermost respect. Our team is ready to roll up our sleeves, and serve each client’s needs.”

Studio46 has broken ground on a 22,000 square foot facility, including more than 3,800 square feet of studio space in Lexington, KY. The project is expected to be completed Fall of 2021, Charles Thompson only needed two words to describe their new space – “Game changer.”


TOPS Leader in

DANCE INSTRUCTION Lexington Arthur Murray Dance Center HUNTER W. LISLE 1801 Alexandria Drive Suite 132, Lexington 859.278.7711 //

According to Hunter Lisle, franchisee of Lexington Arthur Murray, “If you can walk in the door, you can learn to dance.” During his time, Lisle has seen a variety of students walk through his door. “People come in to the studio for all different reasons—just for fun, for exercise, to meet someone, or just to have a date night. We try to really appeal to everyone.” For two decades, the Lexington Arthur Murray franchise has been teaching the finest in social, ballroom, Latin, and country western dancing with a team of instructors who are the highest certified in the country. Lisle says, “Our instructors make it easy and fun to learn. We also feel that we go the extra mile to make the customer experience above and beyond what is expected. We believe that every customer becomes a part of our family.” “Seeing students reaching beyond their comfort zone—then follow through and succeed—is really what continues to motivate me every day,” says Lisle. “We always try to change lives... one step at time!”

Growing up, I was a magician! Now I get to help people work their “magic” on the dance floor!


TOPS Leader in

BUSINESS SOLUTIONS Blue & Co., LLC JENNIFER MILOSZEWSKI, CPA 250 W Main Street #2900, Lexington 859-253-1100 //

Jennifer Miloszewski has been appointed to succeed Greg Mullins as the Lexington, KY Office Director-in-Charge, effective January 1, 2021. “I’m excited to have more of a leadership role at Blue & Co.,” said Miloszewski. “It will be interesting to be more involved in all the parts of what our firm and office do, rather than focusing primarily on the audit and assurance area.” Miloszewski began her career at Blue & Co. in February 2011 and has since had a focus on traditional audit and assurance services and consulting, working closely with construction groups and with other closely-held business on a variety of technical and operational matters. Miloszewski currently chairs the Construction committee at Blue & Co. She is also heavily involved in the Lexington community. Miloszewski is a board member and treasurer for the Carnegie Center for Literacy and Learning, serves on the Board of Trustees and Finance Committee of Lexington Catholic High School, and serves on the Finance Council of St. Paul Church. “I am so proud to serve this community through Blue,” said Miloszewski. “It’s my goal to continue to build on Greg’s legacy and strengthen our firm’s role as a resource for the Lexington community.”


TOPS Leader in

VENUE WITH A VIEW Mane on Main TOM EVANS 201 E Main Street #1500, Lexington 859.231.0464

Known as “Lexington’s venue with a view,” the Mane on Main offers a visual feast for the eyes with panoramic views of the city and the best in farm-to-table food. Located on the 15th floor of the Chase Bank building, The Mane on Main is both literally and figuratively the pinnacle of event venues. Tom Evans, Managing Partner, elaborates, “We’re excited to see what 2021 and beyond has in store. We have been fortunate to host a variety of events since opening The Mane on Main three years ago; large and small intimate weddings, corporate retreats and meetings, nonprofit fundraisers, rehearsal dinners, bridal and baby showers, holiday events and more. We continue to take pride in outstanding service and providing guests with a memorable event.” He adds, “Thankfully, we have Dupree Catering + Events as our exclusive in-house caterer — the ability to give clients an amazing venue and outstanding farm-to-table food all in one is something that makes us proud to serve our community.” Dupree Catering + Events is the only Kentucky caterer to be 3-Star Certified for environmental sustainability.

The Mane on Main is the only event space in Lexington with a view of the entire city.


TOPS Leader in


Dupree Catering + Events has distributed thousands of meals to the community since the start of COVID through the NourishLexington and the FoodChain programs. With the help of collaborators like Food Chain, Stone Jack Bakers, Local Food Connection, AppHarvest and other local farms and businesses, Dupree provides their clients, as well as members of the community in need, with farm-to-table options that highlight the bounty of our region and support local producers and growers. Through donation programs, a 3-star Green Rating for composting and a creative approach to serving community meals, Dupree has significantly reduced their contribution to the food waste stream. “I am so proud of how our team stepped up during COVID to use our talents and experience to give back to the community,” says Managing Partner Tom Evans. “Our staff, led by Executive Chef Janey Thompson, was determined to find a place to help fill the needs of our neighbors. Through our partnerships with amazing non-profits, we got to utilize our combined resources, preparing and delivering made-from-scratch food to people that needed a hand.”

Dupree Catering + Events is the only Kentucky caterer to be 3-Star Certified for environmental sustainability.



TOPS Leader in


Every industry has seen big changes over the past year, with law being no different. According to the members of Fowler Bell, “Federal and state courts have mostly transitioned to electronic hearings, and some believe this will not change in the future. Depositions, mediations, and some client meetings have also transitioned to digital means.” Regardless of the method, at Fowler Bell, the focus is on communication: “Each client is unique. Often times, listening to hear–and without judgment–is better than listening to respond. Taking an interest in each situation and being a communicator is key to an informed and satisfied client.” Serving the Bluegrass since 1897, the Fowler Bell PLLC team prides themselves


on “finding practical solutions to complex matters, with each attorney concentrating in what they do best. The intrapractice groups range from workers’ compensation, insurance defense, and commercial litigation to family law, collection law, commercial and residential real estate, school board law, education law, contract negotiations, and commercial bankruptcy. Fowler Bell has quickly evolved and innovated to rise to the “new normal.” Reflecting, they say, “The year 2020 taught us to be flexible and quickly adapt to the changing needs of our environment without diminishing our responses to the needs of our clients. Our firm transitioned to work from home without a glitch, through a secure off-site service, which enables us to continue representing our clients seamlessly.” They add, “Looking to the future, our work has not diminished

but has in fact increased, leading us to bring in four new attorneys this past year, enhancing two practice areas: real estate and education law.” One of the firm’s leadership role models is their very own Taft McKinstry. McKinstry is currently a managing member of the firm and chair of the firm’s Commercial Law and Bankruptcy and Creditors’ Rights Groups. In 2017, she was inducted into the University of Kentucky Alumni Hall of Fame, the highest honor bestowed by the UK Law Alumni Association. Of her, they say, “Taft McKinstry is definitely a role model to many and is truly a fearless leader. Taft has broken through many barriers and crashed through the proverbial ‘glass ceiling,’ while always doing it in an ethical, honorable manner. She has bridged many gaps and is always there to guide, listen, teach and gently nudge you out onto that branch so you can find your wings and fly.”

TOPS Leader in

RAISING SPIRITS Kentucky Eagle, Inc TATE RUSSELL 2440 Innovation Drive, Lexington

“Kentucky Eagle is in the happy hour, long weekend, after 5 o’clock business,” says President Tate Russell. Along with her employees, she states, “We are a family-built company, delivering the best beer, wine, and spirits come hell or high water. Our team works harder and longer, striving for excellence in everything we do. We are leaders in the industry. And we’re proud of it.” Tate also takes pride in being a firstclass employer the 170 employees that make up the entire Kentucky Eagle family. Kentucky Eagle distributes to your favorite outlets, assuring quality control through their extensive product knowledge. Tate especially loves promoting local: “We take great pride in being able to represent suppliers of all sizes but, most importantly, our Kentucky micro brewers. It’s a privilege to represent growing brands produced by fellow Kentucky-founded businesses.” The Kentucky Eagle website details the many products that they distribute. In closing, Tate states, “With a strong family legacy and dedicated family of employees, we push ourselves to succeed every damn day.”


SAM WHITE 2330 Fortune Drive, Lexington // (859) 264-9496 //

TOPS Leader in



For a business to thrive, it must evolve to serve its clients’ changing needs. No one understands this better than MSI Production Services President and Founder Sam White, who, in March of 2020, pivoted to help businesses and nonprofits to survive amidst the changing landscape. White states, “We were one of the first in Kentucky, in the country, to do virtual events and create a special studio just for that purpose.” MSI’s studio, equipped with high-definition cameras and top-of-the-line lighting and audio equipment, enables clients to broadcast externally across all viable platforms, and to interact with event attendees. With the philosophy of “don’t cancel your event, change it,” MSI is empowering businesses, nonprofits, and individuals to stay connected and relevant through virtual conferences, fundraisers, and events. When we can resume in-person conventions and celebrations, MSI will be there, with a balance of the latest technology, production skill, and creativity to provide a full range of event management and event production services.


TOPS Leader in

HISTORIC WEDDING VENUE Lynwood Estate BRYAN + MELISSA TIPTON 1615 Lexington Road, Richmond 859.948.3331 //

Lynwood Estate is a picturesque historic venue located in Richmond, Kentucky. Around every turn, you’ll notice carefully preserved details of the historic home, built in 1880—and once owned by Pattie A. Clay. Owners Bryan and Melissa Tipton have taken great care in preserving and restoring the property. The couple have expertly restored the estate, which they intend to live in, and many original features remain including heartwood pine floors and large butternut doors. Other aspects of their renovation have included period-correct pieces including construction materials from Buckeye Consolidated School in Kentucky and antique fixtures they have carefully sourced. Until then, they are sharing its beauty with Kentuckians by providing a gorgeous venue for weddings and events. The Tiptons invite couples to immerse themselves in the historic beauty of their property with full weekend experiences that include overnight accommodations at Lynwood, which is located just 30 minutes from Lexington.


TOPS Leader in


BART DAILY 859. 785.1100 //

MetroNet recently welcomed Bart Daily to the Lexington team as Market Leader, supervising the Gigabit City’s fiber optic infrastructure and continued development. Daily has over 20 years of experience in the telecommunications industry, including corporate sales and marketing. His expertise will help guide MetroNet to providing unparalleled internet speeds and exceptional customer service. MetroNet is committed to bringing state-of-the-art telecommunication services to communities — services that are comparable or superior to those offered in large metropolitan areas. In 2020, Lexington became the nation’s largest Gigabit City, which brought 100 percent fiber optic to our citizens. “As a Lexington native, I am excited to be a part of the opportunities that MetroNet is unlocking in our area,” says Daily. “I am looking forward to bringing this future proofed service to more of the Lexington community while ensuring that residents, schools, and businesses have access to the fastest internet speeds available.” In addition to his experience in the industry, Daily is heavily involved in the Lexington community serving as a former Board Member for March of Dimes, and as a volunteer with God’s Pantry, Lexington Rescue Mission Inc, and Junior Achievement USA.


TOPS Leader in


Also known as LexHistory, the organization is the leader in collecting, preserving, and engaging the public with Lexington’s history. Their mission is to inspire our collective future by preserving our history and telling our stories. They do that through all media – print, audio, video and virtual. The Adam Rankin House, built in 1784, is Lexington’s oldest surviving residence. In the spring of 2020, it became LexHistory’s new headquarters. In June, they were granted authority to open a house museum in Rankin House, the fifth house museum in Lexington and the first since 1970. Foster Ockerman, Jr., President & Chief Historian, is a third generation Lexingtonian and a seventh generation Kentuckian. A frequent speaker on our history, he is the author or co-author of six history books and is under contract with The History Press to write the newest history of our community, to be released Fall, 2021. He is also a retired soccer referee and a former rock and roll disk jockey.

The 250th anniversary of the founding of Lexington will be celebrated in 2025.


TOPS Leader in

LIFE DEVELOPMENT Foundation47 DALE MORGAN (859) 334-0837

In his youth, Dale Morgan lacked direction and the guidance of a mentor or role model. To help today’s young people navigate life’s challenges and make informed decisions, Dale founded the nonprofit Foundation47: “a life development and leadership organization focused on improving the lives of underserved and underrepresented individuals, through positive reinforcement, financial literacy training, as well as everyday life training.” Foundation47 overcomes mindset inhibitions, troubled home environments, and systemic roadblocks by introducing concepts such as credit score and how it affects the ability to buy a car or home and everyday financial budgeting to build generational wealth. With guiding principles of integrity, honesty, discipline, inner wisdom, determination, and perseverance, Foundation47 shows young people how “to take the initiative for their lives, their success.” Dale takes the time and effort to instill the principles he wishes he had growing up. “Find out what it is that you want to do with your life. Hopefully, you find your passion, and you have the discipline and perseverance to see it through to fruition. And most importantly, never allow anyone else to determine what success is to you.”

“I’m not saying I will change the world, but I guarantee I will spark the brain that will.” – Tupac Shakur


BOBBI TODD 575 Walnut Hill Road, Lexington //

TOPS Leader in

PRESCHOOL Walnut Hill Day School

As director of Walnut Hill Day School (WHDS), Bobbi Todd credits a large portion of the school’s success to the supportive families who are invested in making sure it continues to thrive. Todd says, “We owe a nod of thanks to the praise our families have spread in the community. Our 35 years of success now span two generations, as ex-students are now enrolling their children.” Over these 35 years, Walnut Hill has provided the highest quality early education for children age two to kindergarten. According to Todd, “WHDS has been in the forefront of early education. We will always be committed to providing the best education for our students and helping them develop physically, socially, emotionally, and cognitively. We offer a nurturing environment that provides academic skills that will give them the foundation upon which to build their future education.”


At the heart is Walnut Hill’s team of tremendous teachers, many of whom have advanced credentials and all of whom share a love of teaching. Todd says, “WHDS’s experienced and dedicated teachers have certainly seen their share of smiling faces at Walnut Hill. Our teachers are here because they truly love children and love to teach. They bring diverse backgrounds and unique talents to the students.” Of course, this past year has brought with it special challenges, especially within the field of education. The staff at Walnut Hill has risen to meet those challenges, exhibiting deeper dedication and turning to teamwork to best serve the children they teach. “During this past year with COVID, I realize what a great group of teachers WHDS has. They faced COVID’s storm head on, rather than run from it. It’s an honor to work with such a great group of women,” Todd states. Another aspect that sets Walnut Hill apart from the typical day school is its convenient yet tranquil location. Todd says, “We are situated .just minutes from downtown adjacent to beautiful Juddmonte horse farm. The bucolic setting and serene location provide a perfect venue for the school’s island of excellence.” When asked what inspires her to be a leader, Todd states, “The smiles on the children’s faces. That is probably most rewarding to all our educators at Walnut Hill. Covid-19 has caused so much turmoil in so many lives. It has been such a blessing to see students able to attend school this year where we can create some normalcy in a not-so-normal world.”



Whether you like it or not, the first impression matters.

Having a sense of style can open doors for so many opportunities that most people would never even think about. How you dress is a reflection of who you are and having a sense of fashion can be seen in the way you carry yourself.

When it comes to looking your best, no matter what it’s for, the very first thing you should take into consideration is fit. If a shirt or pants don’t fit according to your body structure, an entire outfit can be thrown off. My first piece of advice is to find a brand that compliments your body structure. My personal favorite is Banana Republic. They usually fit my needs both professionally and personally. If you select a brand and it still doesn’t fit the right way, don’t be afraid to invest in a good tailor. The second most important piece of advice would be to invest in a good fabric; fabric plays a huge role in giving your body the comfort to breath and stay dry and fresh. Synthetic fabrics or poorly made fabrics tend to create a moist environment and cause you to sweat and feel discomfort. That sweating also projects nervousness or fear, so the best thing to do is stick to quality fabrics. A few suitable fabrics would be cotton, wool, cashmere, silk or linen in warmer climates.


Garment-Dyed Cotton Broadcloth Sport Shirt, $60 | Brooks Brothers

You can never go wrong with a clean white shirt, a must, and a staple foundation for most men. Don’t be afraid to mix it up with some classic colors and tones but avoid funky colors. They are an easy way not to be taken seriously.


Gus Flannel sport shirt in navy plaid by Peter Millar, $148 | Logans of Lexington


Extra Slim Solid Stretch Cotton 1MX Dress Shirt in pebble, navy and gray, $60 | Express


TOPS in Lexington | March 2021

A Blazer can serve as a guide to what a man is doing, such as black being for nightlife, galas and funerals, and the classic navy/blue blazer as a versatile all-in-one. A few additional shades would be grey or brown. If you want to stand out with your blazer, a few of the most striking patterns that never go out of style would be pinstripes and checkered. When it comes to lapels, you can never go wrong with a larger lapel for a two-button blazer/suit. However, if you feel confident, mix a double-breasted with wide-peak lapel.

Slim-Fit Stretch Black Blazer, $125 | Banana Republic

Ludlow Slim-fit double-breasted jacket in Italian wool, $425 | J Crew

Golden Fleece® BrooksCloud™ Silk-Linen-Cotton Houndstooth Sport Coat in brown multi check, $74 | Brooks Brothers

T HE PANT S When orchestrating a carefully coordinated outfit, pants should follow the tops (mainly blazers) making it a suit. A good rule of thumb when it comes to this would be the same fabric, fit, and color. Depending on the occasion, if you’re in a coastal city and you happen to have a big event or meeting somewhere near the water, this could be your exception to change the color of the pants. Perhaps try a white base with a Navy Blazer- don’t go overboard with crazy colors.

March 2021 |


Joseph Abboud Blue Tic Modern Fit Sport Coat in blue tic, $160 | Mens Wearhouse

Last rule for pants: With today’s fashion, jeans are ok as long as they are dark in color, no holes and they are paired with a nice button down and a navy or dark blazer. I’d also suggest accessorizing this look with a nice bow tie, my personal favorite.

SHOES You can never go wrong with a gray or brown pair of shoes; they match almost any color, and if you follow the advice I’ve outlined above; you’re destined to crush your meeting with a sharp trendy look. A few types of shoes that will always compliment an outfit would be loafers, oxfords and half boots.

Skinny Authentic Flex Jeans in Heney Wash, $128 | Madewell

When looking for these shoes, be sure to find shoes made from suede or leather. This will ensure longevity in the shoe and make cleaning a breeze. Untucked Slim-Fit Cotton Shirt in navy plaid, $69.50 | Banana Republic

Shoes and socks from Logans of Lexington

Feathercraft Light Gray Suede Derbys by Cole Haan, $180 | Mens Wearhouse

The Chance boot in chestnut calf, $225 | Tecovas


TOPS in Lexington | March 2021

ACCESSORIES Keep it simple but make it significant. Accessories are a great way to showcase your personality. Bow ties and vests are my personal favorite and always add finishing touches that will compliment any outfit. These accessories give you plenty of options to up your look.

Grant Chronograph Brown Leather Watch, $129 | Fossil

Solid Wool Light Grey Bow Tie, $22 | The Tie Bar

Lastly, I couldn’t leave out the timepiece, as it’s a statement in itself. A quality timepiece will open doors for networking and even shine a light of authority onto you.

T HE CONFIDENCE You’ve mastered the look and the very first impression. Now, the real key to crushing your next meeting, networking event or date is all on you! If you want to create confidence before any setting you step into, its essential that you know your stuff. Be prepared and have a clear understanding of what you are discussing; as this can speak volumes in your meeting or event. Confidence is projected in your ability to persuade, showcase your personality and crush your meeting. So, by leaving it all on the table, you truly give yourself the best chance at getting the results you want. March 2021 |



TOPS in Lexington | March 2021

What You Don’t Know About...

Hiring Employees Who Are in Recovery

Special thanks to 2nd Chance Clinic | by Jared Lee and Rebekah Gallutia very hiring manager experiences the challenge of trying to find new employees. It o en feels like exceptional candidates are few and far between, in any field. ome exceptional candidates are looked over because they are in active recovery. reat candidates may be ruled out because they chose to disclose their recovery others find themselves re ected because of what is revealed through a background check or gaps in employment on their resume. The truth is, candidates in recovery can be an exceptional asset to any business. ome companies even go out of their way to hire candidates in recovery because they value the skills those members bring to the team.

Employee Loyalty

hen someone in recovery finds an employer willing to give them a chance, they are extremely grateful. That gratitude can develop into loyalty to the business and o en a desire to go above & beyond their expected duties to help the company succeed.

Productivity Boost

person in recovery is smart and resilient, which is a recipe for success in today s work environment. en, they are more self aware and have better restraint due to their support systems and stress management skills.

Improved Morale

eople in recovery have a renewed sense of purpose in life and bring that energy with them into their work environment. ecovery teaches people the value of mindfulness and gratitude, which helps them to infuse their workplace with positivity. eople in recovery are also more aware of the value of self care, which reduces the chance that they will face career burnout.

Community Connections

eveloping strong community connections with organi ations, churches, and compassionate businesses are a natural part of the recovery process. These connections and relationship building skills stay with a person for life. lus, many consumers want to support recovery friendly businesses 2nd Chance Clinic |





With a new salon model, Suites of

the Bluegrass empowers Lexington stylists and their clients. by Peter Chawaga photos by Christopher Michael Images


TOPS in Lexington | March 2021

When you enter one of the two Suites of the Bluegrass locations in the Lexington area — surrounded by floor-to-ceiling windows, wood accent walls and hardwood floors — it’s immediately clear that you’re not in a typical salon. Rather, this salon suites rental business creates a luxurious, uplifting, chic experience for customers while offering an empowering and inspiring model for its stylist. The salon suite rental business was founded by brother and sister team Tyler Morgan and Lauren Jones. The pair have complementary skill sets that have allowed them to redefine the area’s salon scene as they’ve built their business. “Lauren is completely visually and aesthetically driven. She has a very good eye for interior design and has a deep understanding of the beauty industry, allowing us to design the flow for the best use of space, along with curating the best equipment,” Tyler told TOPS. “Tyler’s strengths are in AutoCAD, graphic design and budgeting, as well as construction management,” Lauren added. Their suite rental locations on Wilhite Drive and West Main Street host aesthetically-appealing salon facilities with customizable features and a range of high-end amenities. When a local stylist rents a suite, they’ll find that they have the power, freedom and inspiration to serve their clients to the best of their abilities. Stylists have the opportunity to customize the interiors of the suites, to set their space apart. The suite rentals are completely turnkey; there are no washer or dryer use fees; amenities like wax, detergent and Redken Backbar shampoo and conditioner are included. The suites are accessible 24 hours a day. Above all, stylists will have access to a more equitable business model: they pay no percentage on cuts, colors or other services, just a rental fee for the space. “Our mission is to create amazing spaces that allow stylists from commissionbased salons to start their own businesses and take control of their time and financial futures,” Lauren explained. “Our passion is to get big salon owners out of the pockets of stylists, leading to financial freedom, allowing them to work set their own hours, while reinvigorating their inspiration as an artist. When you lease a suite from us, your only expense is rent.”

“Our mission is to create amazing spaces that allow stylists from commission-based salons to start their own businesses and take control of their time and financial futures.”

A recent open house and pop-up market event held at the West Main Street location offered a preview of what a downtown Lexington served by this type of salon model could mean for patrons. It featured brunch cocktails, curated sweets, giveaways from more than a dozen high-end local vendors and the chance to envision how a high-end salon experience could kick off a day or night about town in Lexington. “It was our goal to do something more curated and sophisticated that would give people the opportunity to have a real downtown, big-city salon experience,” Tyler said. “We wanted to portray the suites as a social hub for the city that clients could plan their nights around — getting their hair done, massage, nails, eyebrows, then going to Thursday Night Live, or their dinner plans and experiencing all that downtown has to offer.” Anyone who has landed a job after getting a Brazilian blowout or found a renewed lease on life after a fresh new color understands the importance of a salon. But a business model like this one is new to Lexington, and its success is a sign of the city’s growth. “As Lexington continues to attract young professionals and as luxury multi-unit housing inside the Circle becomes more popular, a more one-on-one experience is going to be desired,” said Tyler. “With the continued growth of the region, stylists will naturally feel cheated by traditional salons, giving up to half of their paychecks to salon owners. This will force them to seek out other avenues to increase their income and better their families’ lives. And that’s the gap our suites bridge. Stylists can make as much or as little as they want, depending on how much they want to hustle.” Lauren Jones & Tyler Morgan March 2021 |



TOPS in Lexington | March 2021

MAC Eyeshadow X9 - Amber Times Nine, $32 | Ulta

When it comes to makeup, there’s a time and place for your favorite bold lip and shimmer eyeshadow and then there’s not.. which is at work. Your workplace is somewhere you want to feel professional and well put together and your makeup is the first step to looking your best. Makeup pro Bobbi Brown breaks down 10 tips for the best workplace makeup practices and we’re giving it all the praise hands. Take note ladies! 1. Aim for a natural look

You want to come to work looking like you’re ready for the day, not like you just came straight from the club.

2. Keep it light

Don’t feel like every day should involve every product. Leave the extra steps for your girls night out and stick to the essentials: concealer, mascara, blush and a nice gloss.

Charlotte Tilbury Pillow Talk Matte Lipstick in shade “Original”, $34 | Ulta

3. Make sure your skin looks good

A fresh face with glowing skin is the best way to feel your best at work. Make sure the product you’re using compliments your skin and doesn’t camoflauge it.

4. Highlight your best features

A full face of makeup isn’t needed to look your best. Think of your features you feel most confident about and accent those.

5. Try a neutral eyeshadow

An easy choice for the eyes would be a warm neutral as it flatters every skin-tone. Stick to those simple shades versus a shimmer or dark matte.

work approved makeup

6. Balance your lip color

Find a lip color that balances your overall natural look. Not too much color and not too much gloss. A matte mauve is always a safe bet as it will last all day and not require touch-ups.

Tarte Shape Tape concealer, $27 | Sephora

7. Bring a little makeup bag

Keeping a small makeup bag with you at work is a life-saver for midday touch ups. Products like powder, face mist and gloss can make you feel refreshed at that 2:00pm crash.

8. Try multi-use makeup

Stick to makeup products have multiple uses to help make your makeup routine easier and quicker. Use an eyeshadow stick for your eyes and for a blush touchup during the day. This saves you from packing brushes around as they’re easily applied with a finger.

9. Wear products that are comfortable

When you’re working a 9-5, you want to feel comfortable all day long and not have itchy eyes or dry skin before you’re able to walk out the door. Choose products that are hydrating and light-wearing so that you’re comfortable throughout the day.

10. Make it quick

MegaGlo Makeup Stick Blush, $5 | Any Drugstore

You don’t want to have a routine that takes too much of your time. Find something that works for you in half the time so you’re ready and out the door quicker.

March 2021 |


Stop! Right now. Now think, what was that one thing about your mother, grandmother, daddy, grandfather or crazy Auntie Mame that was their signature style? Our predecessors were far better at creating a sense of style than we are. Nostalgia - it’s magical and can muster up a plethora of emotions that can make you laugh or cry. In our defense, it’s hard to make Lulu and leggings memorable but that doesn’t stop our love for them. So as the world hopefully begins to open up and people have a much anticipated “re-entry” into civilization, what will make you memorable?


TOPS in Lexington | March 2021


y r l e w e J

A charmed life! One of the things we love about jewelry is the story tied to it.

Charm Bracelet

They are back - and we sure hope they stay! It’s the story of your life wrapped around your wrist.

Right Hand Ring

They should be bold - they should have presence and carry a wow factor.


We love a locket - What photos does yours have in it?

Chain link bracelet with charms, $65 (charms priced individually) | Kendra Scott

Gold floral locket necklace, $50 | Freshy Fig

Power Gemstone Mantra Ring in Labradorite, $68 | Gorjana Jewelry

en M e h t for

Custom Leather Cuff Links, $38.50 | Arrowhead Leatherworks

Custom Class Ring |

Accessories like cuff links and college rings are statement jewelry pieces all men would be proud to wear. Maybe they’re significant to their wedding day, college football championship or birth of their first child.

March 2021 |




We’ve got to get out of our ponytails and buns. We love them at home, but let’s be honest, they take no effort and they are causing our hair to fall out at our temples. Thankfully PRP therapy can help restore both men and women’s hair.

Invest in:

1. Color - Keep it up! Schedule your appointments ahead of time. 2. Dry Shampoo - It can buy you a day when you don’t have time to wash and blow dry - skip pulling it up! 3. Hairspray - Big Sexy Hair is your best friend. Turn a normal-styled do into a pro-styled do. 4. Blow Dryer - invest in a good dryer and it will change the way your hair naturally lays to avoid using too much heat! 5. For the men - Beards! We love them but, they must be groomed. Use The Art of Shaving or Jack Black to keep it looking in tip-top-shape.

Do you get more compliments when you wear a pattern than a solid color? You should try it! Even a simple check or dot will make people notice you.

d e n r e tt a P Clothing

Boca Grande Life Belt in navy, $175 | Smathers and Branson

Tiptoe floral ruffle tiered dress, $64 | VICI Classic Fit Harpoon Island Twill Tucker Button-Down Shirt, $98 | Vineyard Vines


TOPS in Lexington | March 2021



a e

Even if you are a natural beauty and don’t need much there are a few simple applications you can do to enhance that beautiful skin. Layer on a light coat of brown mascara and a dab of blush to your cheek, then follow up with a gloss that complements your skin tone. You’ll be glowing all day!

Cool Undertones

If the vein in your wrist looks blue or if your skin tends to burn, then silver jewelry looks best and opt for rosey and beige tones in your makeup.

Warm Undertones

If your vein looks more on the green side and you tan easily, then gold jewelry should be your go-to. For makeup, oranges, coppers and golds can create your winning look.

Neutral Undertones

If you have more pink and yellow tones in your skin then you’re one of the lucky ladies because you can wear anything! Your best colors in makeup would be pinks, romantic mauves and even a pop of berry. Eyeshadow Single in Sandy, $7 | Kylie Cosmetics

Play up your favorite features - if it’s your eyes then work on mastering the perfect “stand-out look”. Whatever you do, be consistent!

Matte Revolution lipstick in shade “m_i. kiss” | Charlotte Tilbury

Gigi Hadid via Vogue Prada Carbon Cologne, $94 | Sephora

Oh You Fancy High Gloss, $16 | Kylie Cosmetics


o r

Spicebomb Night Vision Cologne, $90 | Sephora


We relate scent to so many memories. We even develop opinions based upon it. Find one or two cologne or perfumes and wear them well.

Gucci Bloom Eau de Parfum, $115 | Sephora

COCO MADEMOISELLE Eau de Parfum Spray, $145 | Sephora

March 2021 |


T HE BLAZER We prefer navy instead of the classic black. Find one with gold buttons for that extra touch of class. Pair it with some diamond studs and you’re all set.



Soft & Sleek Double Breasted Novelty Button Blazer in navy, $158 | Express Sparkle round earrings, $38 | Kate Spade Oversized Satin Portofino Shirt in champagne, $54 | Express High-Rise Wide-Leg Pleated Ankle Pant in khaki, $80 | Banana Republic Ab-Solution Itty Bitty Bootcut Jeans by Wit & Wisdom, $68 | Nordstrom

A blazer looks great with: trouser jeans and a tucked in silk blouse, skinny jeans with a white v-neck tee or even a pair of linen wide-leg khakis and a simple camisole. You can’t go wrong with any of these classics!

Silk camisole in ivory, $50 | J Crew


TOPS in Lexington | March 2021

Petite Print Pleated Shirt, $89.50 | Banana Republic

T HE BLOUSE Every woman has to find the perfect silk button up blouse - okay maybe it’s not silk, it’s rayon but we won’t say a word. A classic white or black is always a go-to; spruce it up and go for a fun pattern instead! Add a smocked cuff for a modern twist and play up your femininity. The Karen Kane crossover tie top is the perfect choice - longer in the back which makes it “leggings-approved”. Pair it with some black boots and gold hoops and you’ve got yourself a classic look.

Crossover Tie-Top in chocolate, $98 | Karen Kane

River Island polka dot organza sleeve top in black, $61 | Asos

T HE CASHMERE T URT LENECK A camel cashmere turtleneck is a staple ladies as it can compliment pretty much every skin tone and it’s super comfortable too! Pair it with jeans or slacks and a classic nude heel and you’re all set.

SmockedNeck Blouse, $60 | Banana Republic

Jean-ish® Ankle Leggings by Spanx, $98 | Cotton Patch

Cotton-blend pullover tunic, $89.50 | Chicos

Wool Cashmere Turtleneck Sweater, $145 | Cuyana

The Gemma Mule in black leather, $98 | Madewell Mila Leather Pumps in nude, $128 | Ann Taylor

Metallics gold flip flop sandals, $50 | Tkees

T HE T UNIC This piece is seasonless and the perfect go-to for work. The Chicos wrinkle-resistant tunic in white can be worn so many ways: with cammo leggings and gold flip flops for a more casual look or ankle length pants with a pair of black pointed toe mules for a more sophisticated look. You can’t go wrong either way! Accessorize with some tortoise shell statement earrings and a gold bangle for a modern look. March 2021 |



High-Rise Wide-Leg Zipper Pocket Jean, $110 | Banana Republic

A pair of dark rinse bootcuts are the perfect start to any work day. Unless you’re a banker, the more casual work environment that we have (partially due to COVID) has allowed the trouser jean to replace black slacks and we’re here for it! Now, to make these boss-approved, you must pair them with some classic nude pumps and a stylish tucked-in blouse, but we know that’s not hard to achieve.

Petite smockedneck blouse, $65 | Banana Republic

Casual bootcut jean in white, $29 | Venus

a l le p

You should buy your white bootcut jeans now before they sell out! Southern mamas would say don’t wear them until after Easter on April 4th, but who are we to judge?

Mamma Mia Fringe Bead Earrings, $24 | Peplum

T HE PUMPS You may think all black all year is the rule for the workplace, but we’re here to break the rules every now and then. Change up your pumps for a pop of color. Remember that black silk button up? Add a fuchsia pointed toe heel or a turquoise t-strap to spice up your look while keeping it professional. Coordinate with some statement earrings and your powers are limitless.

Pleasant high block heels in taupe, $43 | Asos

Fuchsia pointed toe pumps, $398 | Stuart Weitzman


Mariah Vintage Gold Drop Earrings In Turquoise Magnesite, $68 | Kendra Scott

TOPS in Lexington | March 2021

Laurie T-Bar Heels in shade wild meadow, $190 | Boden

T HE DRESS We all know you need that LBD (little black dress) but spring is quickly approaching and has us dreaming of this season’s flirty florals and tiered ruffles. You can still look professional with a little detail to your wardrobe.

High-neck shirred waist mini dress in ditsy floral print, $66 | Asos

Tiered midi dress in pink floral by Y.A.S, $115 | Asos

Cristiana Stretch Dress in Amalfi Blue Alligator Isle, $228 | Lilly Pulitzer

Remember to keep your shoes nude when going for a more patterned, detailed outfit up top. Nude pumps have a way of elongating your legs and adding that visual illusion of height.

Gala Ready Lavender Off-theShoulder Ruffle Midi Dress, $82 | Lulus

Be advised - steer away from too much floral to avoid the “Little House on the Prairie” look. It’s hard for people to take you seriously if you look like Laura Ingles.

March 2021 |


Wh@ lies b e@h We may look on point but sometimes we are held together by duct tape and prayers!

Clip-on Earring Pads, $5 | Earrs

Low Profile Minimizer Bra, $68 | Spanx

MINIMIZER BRA Features a wide padded shoulder to help prevent that shoulder dip.

SPANX Choose a power open-bust mid-thigh bodysuit to feel like you’re sculpted to perfection under that stylish outfit.

T IGHT S We’re counting the days until it’s warm enough to ditch these babies, but during the cold season they’re a must to smooth out those legs and add some warmth.

ARCH SUPPORT W hen you’re rocking those gorgeous pumps all day you have to have some arch support by using heel pads to prevent blisters.

Power Open-Bust Mid-Thigh Bodysuit, $58 | Spanx

Holiday Orthotic Arch Support Insole, $20 | Pedag

Hanes Silk Reflections reinforced toe control-top pantyhos, $11 | Bare Necessities

Premium Heel Grips, $12 | Amazon


TOPS in Lexington | March 2021


TOPS in Lexington | March 2021


Sie a d Chris story by amanda harper photos by juneberry weddings When Chris and Sierra first met, they actually didn’t like each other very much. “Our story is a little different,” Sierra admitted. Chris was best friends with Sierra’s brother and she and Chris couldn’t stand one another! At least not at first. After a couple of years, they discovered they had a lot in common. They became best friends and eventually fell in love. They dated for six years before their July wedding. “After researching venues for a while, I had my eye on Bodock Farms and nothing else compared to it,” Sierra explained. “After going to see it, I couldn’t imagine having my wedding anywhere else.” The venue supplied the couple with décor, and accommodated all their needs. The venue’s willingness to lend a hand was a huge relief for the couple. “With COVID-19 going on, we stayed stressed and didn’t get to enjoy the whole experience due to the unknown, Sierra said. “If we could do it over, we wouldn’t stress as much and just take in every moment.” The couple’s first look moment was unforgettable… for a very hilarious reason. When Chris opened his eyes, there stood Sierra’s brother dressed up as a bride! It was a huge laugh that helped the couple relax before their walk down the aisle. Sierra wore the garter her grandmother wore for her 1964 nuptials. The delicate crystal floral hair pins mirrored the bride’s sweeping bouquet of dahlias, seeded eucalyptus, roses and pampas grass. The bridesmaids carried floral hoops with roses, eucalyptus and feathers for a modern, romantic look. They sprinkled florals throughout the décor to make everything feel fresh and beautifully custom. As guests entered the reception, they were greeted with a pretzel bar and cool drinks. Gold details picked up on the barn’s beautiful wood interior. The space was illuminated with fairy light branches and chandeliers, and the soft light was reflected by a grouping of mirrors hung behind the head table for a whimsical touch. Brown glass bottles filled with greenery and gilt candlesticks served as centerpieces.

March 2021 |


The “naked” wedding cake was decorated with roses, peonies and greenery. It was positioned on a vintage sideboard in front of a faux greenery wall, making for a perfect photo op. They also had a fishingthemed groom’s cake and a small strawberry cake just for the bride. Sierra has this advice for other couples: “Don’t focus on the minor details. Enjoy the day because it will fly by. Simply enjoy being surrounded by your friends and family who are there to support you on your big day!”


TOPS in Lexington | March 2021

March 2021 |



TOPS in Lexington | March 2021

PHOT O J u n e b e r r y We d d i n g s V IDEO J a y Te e H a r d i n V ENUE B o d o c k Fa r m s CAT ERING Hog Wild BBQ CAKE Cathey Owen F LOW ERS Somerset Florist RENTALS B o d o c k Fa r m s BRIDA L GOW N Relix Bridal B R I D A L PA R T Y Azazie GROOM + GROOMSMEN AT T IRE Chantilly Bridal HAIR + MAKEUP Jaci Phelps DJ L t . D a n’s D. J .

March 2021 |


why you should definitely hire a


After years and years of envisioning your dream wedding day you finally said, “Yes!” to your number one man and it’s time to actually plan this thing. You’re probably wondering where to even begin. You’re asking yourself, “What do I do first?”, “When do we want to get married?”, “How am I going to get everything done?” This is where a Wedding Planner comes in. If you’re imagining J.Lo with her perfectly sleek pony in The Wedding Planner movie, it is possible to have your very own fabulous ceremony on the big day right here in Central Kentucky!


TOPS in Lexington | March 2021

So, what does a Wedding Planner actually provide? From partial planning to full service, they all have one thing in common; becoming your partner-in-crime during the entire planning process. If you decide to hire a Wedding Planner, here are some of the services they can offer to make your wedding journey as stressfree as possible: Vendor Search/Recommendat ions If you’re at the beginning of your planning and need help researching different vendors before booking, having a planner is the perfect resource. Most wedding planners will have a “preferred vendor” list of vendors they’ve previously worked with and enjoy working with. They can provide you with a suggested list based on your vision, style and budget which can help narrow down your search from the start! Venue Walk-Through Once you’ve decided on a venue, a Wedding Planner can do an actual walk-through with you to help plan overall venue layout, reception floor plans and guest flow for your wedding. Having a game plan of how your guests will move from ceremony to cocktail hour and into reception will help create a seamless event for everyone! Floral Planning/Vision Assistance If you’re still searching for a florist, a Wedding Planner can help you create a floral plan and “vision” for your big day. This pulls all of your ideas into one cohesive plan that you can then take to different florists for quotes and opinions! They are, of course, the pros, and can offer suggestions on how to bring that vision to life while also staying within budget.

All photos by Rebecca Shehorn Photography

March 2021 |


Overall Wedding Design Your pinterest board is probably jam packed with all the gorgeous inspiration you have for your wedding decor. Sometimes it’s hard to bring those ideas to life for your own wedding. Questions like, “where can I rent that chair?”. “What color tablecloth should I do?”, “How should I decorate my ceremony welcome table?” all come to mind. These are the details a Wedding Planner can help compile for you into one cohesive design plan so that your wedding turns out just the way you envisioned it, and maybe better! Wedding Timeline Creat ion A huge bonus to having a Wedding Planner is having help creating your overall timeline for the big day. Basically from start to finish there will be a plan for all of your vendors to keep track of so that nothing falls through the cracks. Deadlines are necessary for makeup and hair completion, ceremony start time, reception entrance, cakecutting time, etc. Vendor Communicat ion Does communicating with all of your vendors, keeping track of contracts, payment deadlines and meetings overwhelm you? Then a Wedding Planner is just what you need! A planner can be your main source of communication between you and your vendors so that you don’t have to stress about the small details and logistics of your wedding day. All you need to do is focus on the fun! Budget Creat ion/Guidance A wedding budget. One of the more stressful issues in planning a wedding. If you’re having trouble deciding on an overall budget and how much should go where, then having a Wedding Planner will help ease this process as they will know average costs and ways to save and plan for your main priorities.


TOPS in Lexington | March 2021

Wedding Rehearsal and Day of Coordinat ion One of the biggest perks of having a Wedding Planner is that they are also your “day-of” coordinator. You get to wake up on your wedding day and not have to worry about anything other than enjoying every second and living in the moment. A Planner will keep your timeline on track, along with your other vendors and make sure your wedding day goes off without a hitch! Decor Set up and Breakdow n A lot of wedding planners will assist in decor setup and breakdown if that’s something that is not provided by your venue or food vendor. This is a huge help in making sure your vision comes to life on the big day. Sign placement, table decor, etc. can all be taken care of by your planner and allow your Mom or Aunt Judy enjoy the day right by your side!

Now that you know all that a Wedding Planner can offer, you’re ready to pick up the phone right? There are so many wonderfully talented planners in the Lexington area, you’d be in great hands with any of them! Here are a few to get your search started: Zachary Brady Designs

Shelly Fortune Event Design

Bit by Bit Events

Great Expectations KY

JC Weddings & Events

Haley Michelle Designs

Let’s be real - planning a wedding can be tough stuff when in reality it should be the most exciting and stress-free time of your life! With every client I get lucky enough to work alongside, I strive to create a day that is seamless and fun all at the same time! My motto has always been “I got you babe” and I stand by that whole-heartedly. I believe in working together with my couples to create an event that is truly magical and represents their love story in the moment and all the days to come.


Ful l Se r v i ce Weddin g Plan n in g We d d ing Day o f Co o r din at io n We d d ing Stat io n er y an d Callig r ap h y D a y of St at io n er y + Sign ag e





NOW BOOKING 2022 Weddings L e t ’ s p l a n a w e d d i ng ! S c he d ul e your co nsultat io n to day! w w w.h aley March 2021 |


CALLING ALL EMERGING LEADERS! Commerce Lexington Inc. has launched a new program to help emerging leaders expand their capacity to perform in leadership roles.



UPCOMING TOPIC: March: Lex Leader Talk

Shannon Bishop Arvin President & CEO Keeneland Association

t ss a a P cess c A Your Leaders t e G ging r Eme

WesBanco Bank, Inc. is a Member FDIC.

We’ve seen a lot the past 150 years and through it all our commitment to serving our neighbors and their businesses has never wavered. Rest assured, we’ll always be here to help you navigate ongoing change. While providing thoughtful solutions that guide you toward success. Learn more at

P E R S O N A L • M O R T G A G E • B U S I N E S S • W E A LT H M A N A G E M E N T


TOPS in Lexington | March 2021


How happy are you that within a few weeks we can be patio sitting and drinking bottomless mimosas outside? Before we venture out into al fresco dining let’s chat about the rules of business. The big question is, “Can you drink alcohol at a business lunch?” In the great era of the “Mad Men” power lunches we all know the alcohol was the meal. Times changed a bit over the last 50 years so here are the new thoughts.

1. You should know based on your profession (are you an attorney getting ready to head to court after lunch at _____ and maybe it’s frowned upon to not have your wits about you?) and your employer’s opinions of alcohol “on the clock”. Stick with those guidelines and of course, your gut. 2. The magic of networking. If you are in sales and relationship building,then you know nothing can build comrodery like a glass of wine. Enjoy one drink - it’s not a good look to have two no matter waht profession you are in. 3. Know your audience and use common sense. If you are going out with the Boss or the Board - always follow their lead. It’s better to play it safe than sorry.

March 2021 |


We love these! Most of our initial meetings at TOPS are scheduled for 4:00 - cocktail hour! You are allowed to drink regardless of your client. Everyone knows what a “Let’s have a drink” invitation means! If you’re able to handle yourself and get home responsibly, then you might allow yourself to have two. Carson’s is our go-t0 for “seeing and being seen” for business lunches or meetings. One tip - be sure and make a reservation because this place is always packed!

malones • hamburg

Happy Hour Meetings Another favorite would be Malone’s or Drakes for the perfect Happy Hour spot. After every “print-day” you can find the TOPS team at Drakes celebrating the most recent issue and taking a breather! On the other hand, Malone’s is another great location for a business lunch - the perfect atmospere.

carsons • downtown

Here’s a tip - when you are the guest: 1) don’t order the most expensive thing on the menu. It’s just lunch, so keep it light! 2) don’t order top shelf alcohol. Your mama taught you better!

Another choice you can’t go wrong with for a casual business happy hour is Mexican! A couple of margaritas and some chips and queso and you’re all set. It all depends on the client and purpose of the meeting that will determine the location. Do you need somewhere more quiet and sophisticate or is it more of a laid back business lunch?


TOPS in Lexington | March 2021


Meeting Ettiquete 362 E Main Street | Lexington, KY 40507

1. Always tip well and always be friendly and appreciative of your server. It’s just like the question about do you return your shopping cart after grocery shopping at Kroger? People can tell a lot about you from the little things that you do. We want to do business with people we like overall.


2.Always put your napkin on your lap. Doing this shows basic etiquette and makes you seem well put together from the beginning of your meeting. 3. Try your best not to talk with your mouth full. Your guest will be respectuful to let you finish your bite before answering their question. Don’t you love it when you bite into a burger and someone immediately asks you a question? Laugh about it instead of feeling pressured to answer right away without swallowing your food first. 4. Ask questions! The main rule of thumb for a successful business lunch and impression is to listen more and talk less! On average, people report having a better experience when they were asked open-ended questions about themselves. A successful conversationalist doesn’t dominate the conversation, but keeps it moving.

3347 Tates Creek Road | Lexington, KY 40502


1920 Pleasant Ridge Drive | Lexington, KY 40509


401 W Main Street | Lexington, KY 40507

j. alexander’s

4081 Finn Way | Lexington, KY 40503

March 2021 |



eat. shop. visit.

Download the Campestre App • 910 Beaumont Centre Pkwy • 859.368.7779







11:00 AM—11:00 PM DAILY



TOPS in Lexington | March 2021

erson’ P ’ s n i ! k

k o o

b k o

The W or

rn de gry.” o n m in m hu e a n ’ e d k I oft nly “ eel li rille e e g r i f p mo certa can lazy reci d e le re ’s ot en tte y,” it e tab it’s n hick it tim u c s e h ’t ras m bu on t ts. If ired . Isn ese h t p I’ Th o r gh ’s a an “ inne e ni same rs ag t rut! your e r in he s th t d om he yea gh If t hold to ge ask s of t hree ekni yone t e n use rying ntal reru rest t ur w ever ancy… o h T f e e o a ve um , it’s Pint t of y ll ha eling n mo eeses t on k ou es wi ld fe eat! ch ou go brea ecip seho o sw n y to sy r ou h a e

o C

March 2021 |


Vegetarian Split Pea Soup Okay, split pea soup might be a tough sell for your picky eaters. But once you’ve got everyone on board, this will become a beloved go-to. Since all you have to do is chop and toss, this is ideal for throwing in your slow cooker before you dash off to tackle your daily routine. It also freezes like a dream, so you can whip this out of the freezer and warm it up in a snap.

Lemon Chicken Thighs

1 lb. dried split green peas (a little over 2 cups) 1 small onion, chopped 2 medium carrots, diced 2 stalks celery, diced 2 T olive oil Salt Pepper 6 c water (or half stock, half water)

Chicken thighs are a weeknight cook’s secret weapon. Aside from being less expensive (and more moist) than chicken breasts, thighs are a very hands-off protein. Once you’ve seared these, toss the skillet in the oven and pour yourself a glass of wine while you wait.

Rinse your split peas in a colander.

6-8 chicken bone-in thighs, skin-on Salt Pepper Olive oil 1 ½ T minced garlic ¼ c lemon juice ¼ c chicken broth 2 T dried oregano 1 tsp. dried thyme

Stir and season to taste. For a smoother consistency, blend with an immersion blender.

Preheat oven to 425°F. Pat chicken thighs dry with a paper towel. Season with salt and pepper.

(adapted from

Add split peas to the bottom of your slow cooker. Top with oil and vegetables, then season with salt and pepper. Add the water. Cover. Cook until peas are soft, 6 hours on high or 8-10 hours on low.

Serve with crunchy croutons (or a grilled cheese sandwich!) Tip: for added flavor, add 2 bay leaves before cooking. Just be sure to fish them out before serving! This is a blank slate recipe that takes well to all sorts of seasoning tweaks. A little curry powder, paprika or sage are popular options. And if you don’t care if it’s vegetarian… try cooking some ham down in the pot!

Heat around 2 tsp. olive oil in a large oven-proof skillet over medium-high. When pan is hot (oil will shimmer), lay thighs in, skin-side down and sear for 8-10 minutes, until crispy golden brown. Flip and sear the other side. Scoot thighs to one side of the skillet, and add garlic to the pan juices. Saute 30 seconds. Add in the lemon juice and stock to the pan (do not pour over your crispy chicken skin!) Add herbs. Move skillet to hot oven. Roast until completely cooked through, about 15-25 minutes (depending on your oven.) Reserve pan juices. Salt and pepper again to taste, and squeeze a lemon over the chicken for added brightness. For an easy side: once the thighs are done, remove leeks from the skillet and use to saute roughly-cut leeks. Drizzle with reserved pan juices prior to serving. (adapted from


TOPS in Lexington | March 2021

BLT Salad Sometimes, the secret to mixing things up isn’t reinventing the wheel... it’s all in the branding. Your household might not be jumping for joy when they hear “salad,” but “BLT” would probably pique their interest. This recipe can be adapted many different ways for many different weeknight dinners. Having pizza? Throw some sliced banana peppers on top and it’ll have an Italian flare. Having soup? Grilled cheeses cut up into cubes as croutons will delight everyone! Don’t feel like heating up the kitchen? Skip the heat with Romaine right out of the icebox and pre-cooked bacon. We don’t judge! But if you’re already manning the grill, slightly grilling your Romaine will bring that smoky flavor into the salad and take the whole thing to the next level. Romaine lettuce, rinsed, drained and cut in half Bacon, cooked and crumbled or chopped Tomatoes, chopped Parmesan cheese, grated Caesar or Ranch dressing Croutons Either grill your Romaine, or wilt it slightly in a skillet. Skip this step if you prefer your lettuce chilled. Sprinkle with your bacon, tomato and cheese, then drizzle with dressing and serve with plenty of croutons.

Spinach & Sausage Pasta Perfection This recipe is amore! If you’re bored to death of your go-t0 pasta recipe, this might just shake things up. Best of all, it’s deceptively easy to make. If you wanted to make this for a dinner party with a nice, crunchy bruschetta, I bet no one would bat an eye. 2 tsp. EVOO

1/3 c. heavy whipping cream 1/2 tsp. pepper Add oil to the bottom of a Dutch oven. Sauté sausage, onion and garlic over medium heat until sausage is cooked. Drain. Add broth and bring to a boil.

4 Italian sausages, sliced

Add pasta. Cook for 3 minutes.

1 medium onion, chopped

Add spinach. Cook and stir until pasta is tender and spinach has wilted.

2 cloves garlic, minced 29 oz. chicken broth 18 oz. fresh spinach, chopped and trimmed

In a small bowl, whisk flour, pepper and cream until smooth. Slowly pour into pasta mixture and stir, bringing to a boil until thickened.

2 T flour

(adapted from Taste of Home)

8 oz. uncooked angel hair pasta (can be broken in half)

March 2021 |


Spicy Shrimpies Who doesn’t love some delicious little shrimpies? This recipe is the transformer of your dinner arsenal: make these shrimp and serve them up with Pita bread, over rice or beside a steak. Can’t handle the heat? Cut down on the cayenne!

Add shrimp. Sauté for 2-3 minutes, until shrimp turn pink. Shrimp & Rice Skillet

1 tsp. dried thyme

Cook long-grain rice with chicken broth. Toss in your Spicy Shrimpies. Top with sautéed sliced onions and red bell peppers for added zazz and crunch.

½ tsp. salt

Shrimp Tacos

¼. tsp ground nutmeg

Fill tortillas or taco shells with Spicy Shrimpies, and top with shredded lettuce, chopped cilantro and crema.

2 tsp. paprika

¼ tsp. garlic powder ¼ tsp. cayenne pepper


Sauté the spices in oil for 30 second, stirring constantly.

Spicy Shrimpies Po’Boy


Serve on split French bread with shredded lettuce, sliced tomatoes, sliced pickles and mayonnaise.

1 lb. uncooked shrimp

(adapted from Taste of Home)

TOPS in Lexington | March 2021

Chicken (or Not ) Pot Pie Hellooooo, comfort food! This recipe is easily adaptable for different proteins and vegetables. For the most industrious cooks, you can absolutely create individual pot pies for your family by rolling your prepared crusts and portioning them out in smaller baking dishes. These freeze like a dream, as well! Refrigerated pie crusts 1/3 c. butter 1/3 c. chopped onion 1/3 c. flour 1/2 tsp. salt ½ tsp. pepper 1 ¾ c. chicken broth ½ c. milk 2 ½ c. shredded or chopped cooked chicken or turkey OR browned, cooked ground beef or pork OR canned chickpeas 2 c. frozen mixed vegetables Preheat oven to 425. Press one pie crust in bottom of a pie pan. Melt butter over medium heat. Add onion and cook for 2 minutes, until tender. Stir in flour, salt and pepper. Slowly stir in broth and milk, cooking until thickened. Fold in protein and vegetables. Remove mixture from heat. Spoon mixture into prepared pie crust. Top with second crust and seal. Cut venting slits in top. Optional: brush with an egg wash. Bake 30-40 minutes, until crust is golden brown. Let stand 10 minutes before serving. (adapted from Pillsbury)

March 2021 |



Photos you submitted to show us how you spent your February... and you look great doing it! NANCY COX, KATHERINE SHEPHERD AND AMANDA LEMOND

photos courtesy of YOU!






TOPS in Lexington | March 2021

VALENTINE’S DAY ON THE TOWN We stopped by Carson’s Food & Drink, Tony’s and Jeff Ruby’s to see who was celebrating in style. photos by Woody Phillips or courtesy


TOPS in Lexington | March 2021


National Wear Red Day® was Friday, February 5th. Each year, people wear red to help raise awareness of heart diesase. photos by Woody Phillips or courtesy




TOPS in Lexington | March 2021







Enjoy a privite picnic minutes from downtown Lexington catered by Lexington’s top restaurants. Parking is just steps away and very welcoming for those with special needs.


Highly rated on TripAdvisor®!

Outdoor Gatherings Birthday Parties Photo Shoots Mention this ad for a SPECIAL DISCOUNT

THE CARDINAL HILL TEAM Call today to schedule your Goat Picnic! 859.559.1409 March 2021 |



Ice and snow can’t stop you guys from having tons of fun in central Kentucky. Here’s how you enjoyed it! CAMDEN COMBS, COLLINS COMBS, LILLY WILKINSON AND PAYTON STEARLEY

photos courtesy of YOU!






TOPS in Lexington | March 2021


TOPS in Lexington | March 2021

How cute was this retro diner-inspired TOPS photoshoot at Wild Eggs in Hamburg!? Models: Office Doug Garth, Carson’s Food & Drink Bar Manager Stefanie Rogers and Baptist Health nurse Jennifer Hawthorne • Hair and makeup: Lux Hair Bar • Photo: Christopher Michael Images March 2021 |