The Buzz: FAMU President Elmira Mangum kicks off A Day of Dialogue

Welcome to The Buzz, Tallahassee Magazine’s column created to share who’s where and what they’re doing. While we try to flit around with all of Tallahassee’s social butterflies, the Buzz can’t be everywhere. Send the skinny on your next soiree to


A Day of Dialogue 2015: Women of Interest kicked off its spring luncheon speaker series Feb. 26 with a sold-out crowd on hand to listen to a talk by Elmira Mangum. The president of Florida A&M University’s presentation was wide ranging, from quotes that have had an impact on her life to a program she’s instituting to help FAMU students get passports to her thoughts on legislative efforts to allow guns on college campuses. Cherie Rowland moderated the event, and those attending included Dr. Joe Ann Houston, state Rep. Michelle Rehwinkel Vasilinda, Karen Moore, Tom Jennings, Darrin Holloman, Kim Howes, Mary Katherine Lawler, Tracy Cohen, Yuh-Mei Hutt, Mary Stafford, Martha Hall, Mart Hill and Sherrill Ragans.

Shelly Glenn traveled from Sarasota to represent the series’ presenting sponsor, Florida Cancer Specialists. Also in the audience were Lorraine Head, Elmira Davis, Jeanne Curtin, Dr. Florence Ashby, Haley Cutler, Dr. Pam Graham, Robin Hassler-Thomson and Gail Dixon.


Dr. Tyler and Rhonda Baldock opened their Rosehill home to supporters of Boys Town to unveil plans for ART Town. Standing for Art, Resources and Training, the facility will provide art therapy for the youth at Boys Town as well as tutoring and counseling. The 3,500-square-foot remodeled ranch home will also have space for training parents and foster parents. Jay Smith, Charley Redding and Cam Whitlock, who are donating their professional services to the project, showed plans for the building, which will cost more than $500,000 to renovate. Also on hand were Audra Pittman and Kathleen Carter. Along with Kelly Pettit, their art therapy sessions with youngsters at Boys Town inspired the project. Attendees were entertained by The Purple Martin String Quartet as they noshed on hors d’oeuvres. They included Bobby and Sue Dick, Mary Moor, Monique Wood, Benjie Bryan, Marc and Melissa Inglese, Emory Mayfield, Mike Rupp, Patty Barkas, Ken and Michelle Bender, Richard Campbell, Chad and Courtney Jordan, Russ and Cherie Raney, Glynn and Julie Watts and Camille Blake.


With its newly installed wood floors, old tin ceiling and vintage country décor, Shiloh Farm was the perfect venue for the American Cancer Society’s Cattle Baron’s Ball on Feb. 21. The Western-themed event offered the perfect balance of Southern charm and elegance. The main hall hosted tables of sponsors and guests, as well as a live band, dance floor, dinner buffet (by 101 Restaurant), bars and a silent auction. Connected to the country-chic barn is the 200-year-old Shiloh Chapel, which was turned into a casino for the night, where guests could enjoy multiple rounds of craps, blackjack and Texas Hold ’Em poker.

The silent auction, live auction, photo booth, raffles and more offered opportunities for guests to dig into their wallets, from their hearts, to help the mission of the American Cancer Society. A highlight of the evening was a friendly longhorn steer that posed patiently for photos with guests throughout the night.

Among those who tapped into their inner cowboy for the event were U.S. Rep. Gwen Graham and Steve Hurm, Dr. Dale and Sally Wicklow, Dr. Mary and Jeff Swain, Matt and Nita Sherer, Craig Pate, Dr. Arjun and Dianne Kaji, Keith and Debbie Dantin, Claude and Laurie Walker, Marshall Cassidy and family, Beth Vecchioli, Elroy and Lisa Caldwell, Margie Fletcher, Tony and Betsy Brown, Todd and Andrea Kocourek, Tom and Renee Glennon, Bill Corry, Ken and PJ Kanline, Mark and Sally Rosser, Dave and Kathy Gilbert, Mike and Barbara Bist, Jack Madden, Don and Tammy Wise, Gene and Rebecca Rivers, Steven Louchheim, Jeff and Terri Doxsee, Shane and Trina Searcy, Kitty Flynn, Jackie Wilson, Jane Parsons, Sonia Jewel, Glenda Cato, Rachel Pienta, Becky McNeal, Carla Stevens, Shannon Summerlin, Frank Hranicky and Bill and Lori Durham.


More than 500 attendees came out to support the Tree House of Tallahassee at Fast Cars and Mason Jars, held at The Farm on Meridian Road. The evening started with an extensive silent auction, live music and open bar with mojitos as the signature drink. Guests enjoyed Mexican food during the live auction, where everything from black Labradors to Argentinean hunting vacations were auctioned off. Among the attendees were Brian Drawdy, Mark and Maria Yealdhall, Hayden and Angela Dempsey, Anuj and Sonia Patel, Steven Lohbeck and Kenzie Burleigh, Wes Tindell and Anna Dower, Blake and Jeanne Dowling, John and Renee McNeill, Chad and Kristin Gardner, and Stewart and Cissy Proctor.

The night concluded with the Tupelo after-party/concert that also included a mechanical bull, endless cupcakes from The Cake Shop, and Taco Republik food truck offering all-you-can-eat tacos to satisfy the late-night munchies. The Tree House provides shelter for abused and neglected children from Tallahassee and nine surrounding counties.


A sold-out crowd of 300 people filled the aisles of The Fresh Market after hours on Feb. 26 for a Wine Gala benefiting the Patrons Association of Florida State University’s School of Theatre. Ten tables strategically placed around the store featured tastes of wines from around the world as well as delicious bites including crab crostinis, roast turkey sliders, classic shrimp cocktails, smoked salmon terrine and antipasto trays that included delicious little pickled peppers stuffed with cheese and prosciutto.

Those sipping and savoring included Virginia Newman, Mike and Nancy Sheridan, Lou and Betsy Kellenberger, Angela Hardiman, Howard Kessler, Anna Johnson Riedel, Mandy and Frank Bianchi, Helene Bianchi, Leo Sandon, Anna Smith, Sandi and Dave Jacobsen, Gary Cook and Cameron Jackson, the executive director of the School of Theatre.

Other patrons at the event included Howard and Susan Eisenman, Barbara Elam, Jay Newman, Bob Spivey, James Smith, Lynn McWilliams, K.C. McWilliams, Ellen Berler and Rob Contreras.

The Patrons Association supports students and the arts at FSU with scholarships, community programming and outreach, student recruitment and visiting guest artists. Twice annually, The Fresh Market provides food and drink at in-store fundraising events for local nonprofit groups, which keep the proceeds from ticket sales.


After some cold and dreary days, the weather warmed up to a spring-like 80 degrees just in time for Associated Industries of Florida’s party March 2, always held the night before Florida’s 60-day legislative session begins. Everybody who’s anybody in the state’s political elite makes an appearance, including Gov. Rick Scott, as well as lobbyists, aides, media folks and more. The giant, 1,200-person cocktail party is held in the backyard of the group’s Adams Street headquarters, which represents the interests of some of Florida’s largest businesses.

Local politicians were among those spotted the event, including city commissioners Gil Ziffer and Curtis Richardson and Rep. Alan Williams. Former Tallahassee Mayor John Marks was there, as well as Marc Paul, Van Poole, Lance Lozano, Meghan Kelly, Barbara Ash, Matt Ubben, Trimmel Gomes, Ken Armstrong, Tisha Keller, Marcela Romera Gomez, Michael and Martha Coppins, Kathleen Haughney and Gray Rohrer, Tia Mitchell, Florence Snyder and Emily Fritz.


“Prost!” to GrassLands Brewing Company, which recently opened its Gaines Street brewery and taproom. On the night before the Feb. 28 opening, the owners hosted a Campaign Donor Soft Launch Party to celebrate the brewery’s crowd-funding campaign donors as well as GrassLands’ investors.

Co-owners Gabe and Saralyn Grass and Scott Hall celebrated with family, friends and supporters including Bruce Grass, Ronnie and Debbie Sapp, Doug and Jill Smith, Daryl Green, Jake and Michelle Kiker, Chad Gardner, Dan Parisi and bartenders Andrew Pitts and Liz Kaniosky.


When dressage day was over March 6, organizers of the Red Hills Horse Trials spent a lovely evening saying “thank you” to the sponsors who helped make the three-day eventing event possible. RHHT has become a signature springtime event in Tallahassee garnering international attention.

The party was sponsored by Capital City Bank and representatives from the financial institution who were there included Bill and Paula Smith, William Smith, Bill Moor, Brooke Hallock, Tom and Jane Barron, and Ryan Poole.

Among those enjoying fried oysters, thick slabs of bacon and a giant vat of corn chowder cooked up by Cowboy Catering were Brian Rowland, Mark Baldino, Theo and Velma Proctor, Alan and Amy Hanstein, Mike and Flo Schmidt, Bill and Lori Mattice, Elizabeth Barron, George Varn, Lee and Terry Daniel, Tom and Stephanie Derzypolski, Winston and Yvonne Howell, Scott and Allison Harrell, Kim Smiley, and Michelle and Janet Wilson.

Categories: Society