Society / The Seen

Houston’s New Women of Distinction Revealed

2019 Elite 11 Greeted by Wild Cheering as Traditions Change

BY // 09.22.18
photography Traci Ling, Daniel Ortiz

What: ABC 13 Women of Distinction announcement party

Where: Tootsies

PC Moment: The resounding cheering for the 11 honorees was unprecedented on what has been over the decades typically punctuated by ladylike applause. Just as the previous century decorum of golf tournaments and tennis tournaments has been replaced by rigorous fan support, so our previously reserved salute to leading ladies, whether Women of Distinction or Best Dressed, has given way too vocal exuberance and high-pitched whistles.

So it went when ABC 13 new anchor Gina Gaston introduced the 2019 honorees to be formally honored at the Winter Ball: Farida Abjani, Marilyn DeMontrond, Gaynell Drexler, Jo Lynn Falgout, Carolyn Faulk, Melissa Juneau, Dr. Kelly Larkin, Sneha Merchant, Claire Cormier Thielke, Jerre Williams and Merele Yarborough, the 2019 Ambassador.

Also taking the spotlight were chairs of the January 19, 2019 gala, Cyndy Garza Roberts, Dr. Sippi Khurana and Shawntell McWilliams, all former Women of Distinction. Mary Ann and Daivd McKeithan took bows as honorary chairs. The evening benefits the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation.

Cheer squad: Tootsies owner Norman Lewis and wife Donna, Tootsies creative director Fady Armanious, Carol Sawyer, David Peck, Melissa DeMontrond, Donae Chramosta, Gayla Gardner, Susan Sarofim, Ed cMahon, Christine Falgout-Gutknecht and Bill Guktnecht, Yvonne Cormier, Marian Harper, Ann Ayre, Susan Osterberg and Leisa Holland Nelson.

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