News and Tribune

March 9, 2014

Speakers for Pearls of Wisdom program announced

Event Kicks Off March 19 with Mary Moseley


> SOUTHERN INDIANA — One Southern Indiana (1si) has announced the program lineup for its popular Pearls of Wisdom program which kicks off March 19.

Sharing their diverse paths to success, this year’s speakers include several prominent women in various industries and stages of their careers. These women will share their stories as entrepreneurs and leaders and will entertain, educate and inspire attendees to continue to learn and grow, regardless of age, position or industry.

“This event gives attendees opportunities to connect with other women and to create new professional and personal roadmaps for their lives,” said Wendy Dant Chesser, president and CEO of 1si. “Each of the keynote speakers will bring a different perspective and life experience to the audience.”

This year’s speakers include:

∞ Wednesday, March 19 - Mary Moseley, president of Al J. Schneider Company

∞ Tuesday, June 17 - Anne Northup, senior principal in the Policy Resolution Group of Bracewell & Giuliani and former member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Kentucky's 3rd district

∞ Wednesday, Sept. 17 - Fhonia Ellis, celebrity fashion designer and owner of Fhonia Ellis, Inc.

∞ Wednesday, Dec. 3 - Leslie Lewis-Sheets, owner of Leslie Lewis and Associates Interior Design

After each inspirational forum, professionals from different industries volunteer to serve as table facilitators and will lead table discussions and identify the points they will take away from the speech. Table facilitators for the March event include:  Dr. Catherine Sherrard, Ivy Tech Community College; Melissa Weissinger, Indiana University Southeast; Libby Elswick, Chase Bank; Laura Wilkins, Carnegie Center for Art and History; Lindsey Neely, Kosair Children's Hospital; Jennifer Abbott, Clark-Floyd Counties Tourism and Convention Bureau; Sheryl Sprigler, Citiview Publications; Julie Proctor Sanders, Hosparus; Kathleen Hoye, U of L School of Business; and Dr. Marilyn Faulkenburg, Sullivan University.

In addition, at each Pearls of Wisdom event, guests will have the opportunity to register to win a 16-inch strand Rice Pearl Necklace with a handmade sterling silver magnetic clasp, valued at $800. This hand-crafted piece was donated by Endris Jewelers in New Albany and will be unveiled at the first event.

The 2014 Pearls of Wisdom program is sponsored by: Corporate Sponsors - Floyd Memorial Hospital and Health Services and PNC Bank. Premier Sponsor: L & D Mail Masters, Inc. Gold Sponsors: Endris Jewelers, First Savings Bank, Ingrid Designs, Kye's, and Park Community Credit Union.

The event takes place in Kye's I at 500 Missouri Ave. in Jeffersonville, from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. and includes breakfast, networking opportunities, speaker's presentation and roundtable discussion. Registration is $30 for 1si members, $45 for guests or $100 for all four events. For additional information, or to register, call 812-945-0266 or visit the 1si website at

About the speakers:

March 19

• Mary Moseley, CEO and president of The Al J Schneider Company received a bachelor of arts and sciences from University of Louisville. Moseley led the revitalization of the company with a $70 million renovation of the Galt House Hotel and brought the first “branded hotel” to the company's portfolio, Crowne Plaza Louisville Airport. Plus, she partnered with another investor to open the Embassy Suites that will be located in downtown Louisville and is scheduled to open in the spring of 2015. Moseley is a partner in Kentucky Kingdom that will open in May 2014. Moseley has served on many boards: Downtown Development Corporation, Main Street Association, Greater Louisville Inc., Louisville Visitors and Convention Bureau, Home of the Innocents and more. The company's entities include: Galt House Hotel, Crowne Plaza Louisville Airport, Waterfront Plaza, One Riverfront Plaza, Medical Arts Building and Home Supply Millwork.

June 17

• Anne Northup is a senior principal in the Policy Resolution Group of Bracewell & Giuliani with more than 19 years of experience in public service.  A former member of Congress, Northup most recently served as a Commissioner on the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). Prior to her service at CPSC, she represented the Louisville-centered third district of Kentucky in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1997-2007.  Prior to election to Congress, Northup served in the Kentucky House of Representatives for nine years. She has received numerous legislative awards during her career, including the prestigious “Adam Smith Award,” presented annually to one federal elected official who exhibits an exemplary commitment to economic freedom. Northup currently serves on the Board of Trustees of Saint Mary's College, Notre Dame, Ind., and on the Board of the American Institute of CPAs.

Sept. 17

• Fhonia Ellis, a Louisville native and fashion designer, started her career at age 15 when she redesigned a pair of jeans for her friend's mom. Ellis found her niche in high school and was even referred to by her peers as “The Designer.” In 2011, she sold her car to pay for moving expenses to New York City and moved into her first apartment without having seen it beforehand. She worked for BET as a fashion assistant and freelance stylist. In this role, she inspected and prepared clothing for shoots and live shows, altered clothing as well as designing clothing for BET. Her work has also been featured in 4W and Jet magazines.

Ellis moved back to Louisville to tend to some family situations and has since been developing her fashion line and has started The Hope or Die Foundation, which was developed to encourage others to have positive expectations despite life challenges. Hope or Die is a movement to help those who have lost their way, feel there is no hope or cannot see how to fulfill their purpose.

Dec. 3 

• A graduate of New Albany High School, Leslie Lewis Sheets received a bachelor of fine arts degree in Interior and environmental design from Ball State University. She has worked in the field of interior design for the past 29 years and began her career in design in West Palm Beach, Fla. Upon returning to her hometown, Lewis Sheets worked as director of interior design for an architectural firm, co-owned another interior design business for ten years, and is currently celebrating her 10th year as a business owner. She is a certified interior designer, has her NCIDQ credentials, and is a member of her professions' organizations ASID and IIDA. In addition, she serves on the boards of the Floyd Memorial Foundation, the Community Foundation of Southern Indiana, One Southern Indiana, and the Floyd County Parks Department and is a member of Leadership Southern Indiana, Toastmaster's, and the Windsor Society.