Fashion / Weddings

Houston Power Player Gets Married on His 83rd Birthday After 30 Years of Bachelorhood

Jack Morris Rains and Karen Ann Bradshaw's Incredible Wedding Story

BY // 12.11.20
photography Wilson Parish

We would have seriously bet that after 30 years of marriage, followed by 30 years of bachelorhood that former Texas Secretary of State and powerhouse attorney Jack Morris Rains would remain single forever. To our surprise and delight, the political mover and shaker pledged his troth on November 23 to Karen Ann Bradshaw.

Perhaps it was Rains’ successful year-long battle against cancer that changed his attitude. After all, at age 82, who wants to waste any time. Or perhaps it was the pandemic that had Rains, and others, bemoaning living alone.

Both active in mutual civic and philanthropic causes, the duo had circled on the periphery of each other for decades. The now-Mrs. Rains is owner of Sovereign, a commercial real estate company, and of John Bradshaw Media Group. She was married to New York Times bestselling author, PBS and MGM talk show host and therapist John Elliot Bradshaw Sr. He passed away in May 2016, leaving behind Karen and their now 13-year-old daughter, Ariel Harper Bradshaw

Four years after her father’s death, Ariel asked her mother to start dating. She explained that all of her eighth grade friends had fathers and she did not. A modest amount of dating began.

Then on a hot and steamy day in July in the middle of the pandemic, Jack and Karen had lunch together at Tony’s. Love at first sight? Love at first bite? An endless stream of dates ensued and within a short time Jack had asked Karen to be his bride. After Karen said yes, Jack, wanting to be a good dad, approached Ariel and asked if he could marry her mother.

“Jack’s contagious enthusiasm, energy and zest for life were apparent even after his recent yearlong successful battle with cancer,” a friend observed.

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Jack Rains wedding (Photo by Wilson Parish)
Karen Ann Bradshaw and Jack Rains exchange vows at St. John the Divine Episcopal Church where the Rev. Reagan Cocke officiated. (Photo by Wilson Parish)

The May-December wedding was held on Jack’s 83rd birthday with the service performed at the Church of St John the Divine with the Rev. Reagan Cocke presiding. The musical celebration included a soloist, trumpets, the carillon and church bells. Delivering readings  were Harris County Commissioner Rodney Ellis and former Harris County Treasurer Orlando Sanchez.

Karen wore a Grace Kelly style gown by couturier David Peck. She was joined at the altar by her daughter serving as maiden of honor and Mary D’Andrea as matron of honor. Standing as best men for the groom were his son, Tom Dixon Rains, and godson Marshall Jack Welch.

Flowers were by Taylor DeMartino. The raspberry vacheron cakes were made by Mrs. Dewey.

Though small enough to meet social distancing requirements both in the church and during the reception at La Griglia, the guest list included a number of Houston bold-faced types including Kara and Ray Childress, Ben Berg, Cynthia and Tony Petrello, Valerie and Tracy Dieterich, Kristi and John Schiller, Kathleen Mecom Fogerty, Barbara and Mike Dewey, Drs. Nancy Nussmeier and Randall Wolff, Jules and Dr. Sam Harris, Gloria and Dr. Glen Blake, Astrid Van Dyke, Sherry Davis, Anna Dean, and Dawn Clebowski.

We would not be doing right by Jack Morris Rains if we did not include details from his impressive CV: former chairman of the board of 3D International (3D/I); founding chairman of the Harris County Houston Sports Authority, which owns Minute Maid Park, NRG Stadium and the Toyota Center. Rains was a driving force in bringing the NFL back to Houston, and stabilizing Houston’s Major League Baseball and the National Basketball Association franchises.

Rains has been an active civic leader in city, state and national politics and public service for decades. Currently serving Of Counsel to the Houston headquarters of the law firm Gray Reed, Rains has been appointed by the Governor of Texas, Harris County and Mayor of Houston to various boards and commissions. He led fundraisers for President Ronald Reagan and President George H. W. Bush, and many political and civic causes, culminating in his appointment as the secretary of state of Texas and his candidacy for governor. A lifetime director of the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo, Rains has served on the board of directors of Baylor College of Medicine, M.D. Anderson Hospital and the Texas Medical Center.

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