May 14, 2019 by Nell Nolan
The Catholic Charities Archdiocese of New Orleans ACCESS Pregnancy & Referral Center gathered supporters to the Audubon Tea Room for “Hats Off to Spring.” Honoree Gayle Gaubert, who was hailed “for her commitment to a culture of life,” received a standing ovation as Sister Marjorie Hebert, CCANO president and CEO, presented her award. Created by India Stewart, it was painted piece with, in addition to other significant details, wording from Psalm 139.
As part of the program — and prior to the award presentation — Michelle Black, director of Catholic Charities Pro-Life Services, welcomed the crowd and Archbishop Gregory Aymond made special introductory remarks. Earlier, he and the ACCESS board extended the invitation, which was designed by Chrissy Gregg Baynham, to the jazz brunch and auction. The top donors, the “Diamond” category, were A Friend, David and Anna Jouandot and Team Tangie Inc., Realtors.
Among the top names were event Chairwoman Kim Simon, who coordinated the logistics and activities; assistant Karen McGoeywith husband King; ACCESS board President Lynn Woods Schonberg with husband Stephen and mom Gloria Woods; Vice President Madge Schexnaydre; recording secretaries Mary Ellis Hasseltine and Lois Cambre; and past President Lisa Bayhnam.From the Gaubert family came Gayle’s husband of 55 years, Jimmie, and children Jamie Gaubert Lassere and husband Richard, Aimee Gaubert, and Jimmie Gaubert Jr. They reported the tidings of the day to Gaudet grandchildren Andre and Juliaand daughter-in-law Rita Gaubert. Doug Black joined Michelle, as did their sons, Will and Henry, who served with Archbishop Rummel High School Student Ambassadors. Directed by Denise Schmidt, the students helped run the auction.
Still others, who delighted in the served meal of spinach salad, sirloin steak, and vanilla cheesecake, were board members Sharon and Mark Rodi, Elisabeth Dillmann, Patricia Quinlan, Hope Cambre, Joan Cuccia, Diane Gannuch, Linda Heno, Gwen Keenan, Maria Villafranco and Sharon Simons Wild. Notable guests included Tangie Stephens, Rita Congemi, Janet Patterson, Maria and Robert Winn, Rosetta and Vincent Tumminello, Nancy and Ralph Hihar, Anne and Jack Dardis, Kay and Barra Birrcher, Linda and Frank Sunseri, Gail and Roy Daigle, Kathi and Wayne Pietri and Judy and Bob Martin.
Sheila Spring and Jean Mitchell chaired the silent auction of 130 items, while guests took chances to win at the parade of prizes. As for the music, Christian Bautista led the Archbishop Rummel “Raiders Jazz Band,” which set a scintillating tone for a true Jazz Brunch.