Member News - December 2020

As always, a big shout out to our members that have made the news. Below you'll find members that have been highlighted or otherwise recognized. Thank you to those that submitted news this month and thank you to our members that continue to push the outside of the envelope in some way. 

Mary Nisi, founder of Toast & Jam DJs, was recently featured in an NPR article, “Wedding Professionals Say Some Venues Are Not Following COVID-19 Rules” focused on COVID regulations, adjustments and how the industry is adapting to these new times. Since COVID’s start Toast & Jam has adapted guidelines to events to prioritize the safety of our employees and event guests to mitigate exposure. “If you have to get married in a pandemic, you want...Toast & Jam on your team of wedding vendors. From the very start, she was professional, organized, and made us feel at ease knowing that our music was in the hands of a seasoned expert. We especially appreciated that the DJ asked all the right questions to get to know us and understand our personalities and desired wedding vibe. Through all the twists and turns of planning, the DJ was on the ball with her responsiveness, creative and fun ideas, "yes's" to our special requests, and calming demeanor. We were very lucky to have her be a part of our big day.”

Friar Tux awarded five lucky Preferred Vendors with a free suit/tuxedo as part of their “Will You Be Our Plus One?” Preferred Vendor Giveaway. Friar Tux would like to thank everyone who participated. If you are interested in finding out more about Friar Tux or Stitch & Tie’s Preferred Vendor Program, please email Evan Goodwin [email protected]. You don’t want to miss The White Wren’s latest collaboration featuring Friar Tux’s Ivory Paisley Shawl Lapel Tuxedo in their Micro-wedding Inspiration with a Boho Twist. For those scheduling holiday photos or planning an intimate holiday gathering this season, Friar Tux has style options to elevate your look. Visit your nearest Friar Tux store or email [email protected] for more information about how to style up and save this holiday season.  Know of someone who wants to get styled for their special day? Click here to book an appointment at a Friar Tux store or schedule a virtual style session at or

Elizabeth Sheils of Rock Paper Coin gave advice on WIPA for ‘Bad Reviews in the Digital Age: Here’s the only way to handle them.’ She also sat down with Wedding CEO Podcast and discussed ‘Inbox Strategies to Supercharge your Wedding Business.’ Rock Paper Coin was also a guest on the Evolve Your Wedding Business podcast, speaking about ‘Digital Audits & How To Evaluate Your Company’s Tech.’  

Michelle Loretta of Be Sage Consulting (formerly Sage Wedding Pros) was featured in Authority Magazine for ‘5 Things You Need to Be a Highly Effective Leader During Turbulent Times.’ Michelle also contributed to ‘What Pros Have Learned and Changed About Their Businesses During COVID’ on Catersource. 

Christie Osborne of Mountainside Media spoke on Talk with Renee Dalo Podcast ‘About All Things Analytics’ and she gave insight on how to ‘Use Google Analytics for Your Fall Marketing Audit’ on Catersource.  

Kevin Dennis of WeddingIQ debuted on CNN and MSN on tips to ‘Elope Beautifully - and Safely - Right Now.’ Kevin was also included in a roundup on Allseated for ‘Virtual Wedding Tips from the Pros.’ 

Jennifer Taylor of Jennifer Taylor Consulting spoke to She Creates Business Podcast on ‘Business Growth: How to Know You're Ready with Jen Taylor Consulting’ and she shared with Special Events how to ‘Save Time and Energy by Going Virtual in These Four Areas.’

Emily Sullivan of Emily Sullivan Events discussed the ‘Optimal Software Setup for Wedding Planners’ on Timeline Genius. 

José Rolón of José Rolón Events was featured on Parents with ‘This Single Gay Dad of 3 Will Inspire You to Stay Positive—No Matter What You're Dealing With’. He will also be speaking live at NACE New Orleans on April 7th. 

Margaux Fraise of Harmony Creative Studio sat down and discussed the importance of community and why you need to set up processes for your business on Planner Life Podcast. She also shared ‘How to deal with family drama (and other things you aren’t getting paid for)’ on Special Events and was included in a roundup on ‘Special Touches for Your Small Wedding’ on Storyboard Wedding. 

Dixie Bagley of The Farm shared her expert advice on ‘How to Build a Solid Venue-Rental Relationship’ on GoodShuffle. She also was featured on WeddingIQ for ‘Working ON Your Business While Working IN Your Business.’ 

Meghan Ely of OFD Consulting shared advice on Popped! on ‘How To Pull Off A Surprise Proposal During The Holidays’ as well as discussed ‘5 Steps to Become a Public Relations Star’ on Rising Tide Society. Meghan also shared ‘How Your Services Will Adjust in the New Year’ on Special Events. 

Sam Jacobson with Ideaction Consulting teamed up with Megan Gillikin of A Southern Soiree on her podcast, Weddings for Real, to talk about improving consultations. In case you missed all 115 tips that were discussed, check out the episode here

Great Officiants has again won The Knot Best of Weddings. They have won the every year since 2011. Their team of 37 Professional Wedding Officiants has consistently won every major wedding industry award year after year. Their commitment to the Fun and Romantic wedding concept and ability to issue marriage license has made them a top choice for couples, wedding planners and venues.

Dickie Brennan & Company Announces New Director of Sales & Marketing, Lindsay Ross - This November, Lindsay Ross joined Dickie Brennan & Company as Director of Sales & Marketing. Ross will lead the marketing and public relations efforts for this family of restaurants. She will guide the sales team in managing private dining, private events, weddings, and outside catering through Dickie Brennan Catering & Events. 

Most recently, Ross worked with the Vega Group, an event agency building experiences and events – many with a culinary focus – for corporate brands. From 2009 to 2017, she served as Director of Communications for the Contemporary Arts Center, New Orleans. There, she also produced annual events such as Whitney White Linen Night & The Julia Street Block Party. From 1999 to 2006, Ross was the Executive Director of the New Orleans Film Festival, an annual week-long festival including the Festival Gala, industry panels, and film screenings city-wide. She has a B.A. in Communications and Public Relations from Loyola University, New Orleans. Dickie Brennan's restaurant group includes Palace Café; Dickie Brennan's Steakhouse; Bourbon House; Tableau; Acorn, A Dickie Brennan Café in the Louisiana Children's Museum; and The Commissary, Market + Eatery. 

DJ Will Gill is featured in the Wall Street Journal as the best DJ for corporate virtual events. The article "The Virtual MCs Charged With Saving Company Morale In 2020" spotlights various pivoted entertainers and includes DJ Will Gill and his unique style of virtual entertainment. The article can be read HERE.

Julie Nobis is taking over as Co-Owner of Creative Coverings Specialty Event Linen Rentals. Nobis previously held the position of Director of Business Development and will be taking over for Robin Brockelsby. Brocklesby has decided to step back to focus on her health and wellness.  Nobis has been with Creative Coverings for more than a year and was previously co-owner of the Tannenbaum Event Center. Nobis will take over Creative Coverings with Christian Nobis, who helped found the company in 1996. Check them out at

Jerry Barnett of Moments Notice Entertainment is excited to announce a reimagined brand that will launch in early 2021 along with a 40th anniversary celebration scheduled for summer 2021. The program will be presented virtually as well as, a live "art of celebration" showcase.

Symphony Weddings & Events has been named to the prestigious The Knot Best of Weddings Hall of Fame 2021! Symphony Weddings & Events has been selected as a Best of Weddings award winner every year since the company’s conception.

Symphony Weddings & Events is so excited to officially welcome their second full-time Wedding Planner, Kendra Brown, to the team! Kendra specializes in Custom Full-Service Elopement Planning and Day-of Wedding Coordination. This is a huge accomplishment for the company!

Brittany Pfeffer, Owner of Symphony Weddings & Events, was interviewed by local news station Fox 5 Las Vegas about how the coronavirus is affecting the Wedding Industry in Nevada and how her company has adjusted to accommodate the needs of couples. 

Bella Vita Events is honored and elated to be featured on renowned photographer, Gloria Mesa’s blog! Gloria has worked diligently to increase her reach and her blog has become a viable source of wedding FAQs and informational guides. Deborah James has contributed the piece “Timeless Elegance” to the blog, which can be read HERE.

In 2020, Brianne Garritano celebrated 16 years in the event and wedding planning industry. Her planning firm, Marquette Avenue Events, in its ninth year, has fully taken on challenges and uncertainty. Through tremendous hard work, caution and expertise, Brianne and Team MAE have executed several intimate, safe and elegant events following all health and safety guidelines for clients who still wished to celebrate in intimate, socially distant, virtual and hybrid ways. They have gone the extra mile to learn, quickly adapt and innovate to make their client's experience relevant, safe and still extra special. 

In the Spring, MAE partnered with a local, female business owner and Italian wine importer, Tricia Barry Romano to recognize healthcare heroes who were also wedding planning to gift them with Bariano Prosecco, a small gesture given all of the hardships they were and are currently facing. Brianne also saw the long term need for masks and created a passion project with Love Masks #MAExHauteMod

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