Commercial Photography Food, Architecture, Product, Business Headshots

Veteran's Gala 2018

I want to give high accolades to Joe and Larra Donaldson for organizing and implementing the first (hopefully annual) Veteran's Gala. The line up of speakers included Coffey Anderson who was great musical entertainment of the national anthem followed by PFC Jessica Lynch who shared her testimony of being an Iraq POW. She was followed by Chaplin Captain Justin Roberts who also shared his experiences and a intro of the soon-to-be-released movie "No Greater Love". Lt Get Leroy Sisco presented a home to a young veteran and his wife provided by Wells Fargo and furniture by Sam's Furniture. Evan Owens shared information about Reboot Combat Recovery helping veterans defeat combat trauma.

George Chmiel shared his story of his run across america, along with the struggles he faced but also the people and lives he touched along the way. Lt Governor Tim Griffin, introduced the keynote speaker of the evening, Col Oliver North. I remember Col North from his long time on TV with the Iran Contra hearings back in the 80's, he gained my respect back then and I've always seen him as a dedicated American Marine, if not hero, they put him through a lot during the hearings but he came back with all charges reversed, he's been in the spot light since that time as a political commentator, television host, author and presently president of the NRA. His keynote address was one that had my attention the entire time.

The evening closed with Coffey Anderson praying over the event and gracious donations to help the veterans in need. Hopefully this event will become an annual event, the convention center was practically sold out. The bar was certainly set high for the future gala's but I know they will pull it off now that it has momentum. I would like to add that EVERY speaker received a STANDING OVATION!

I was honored to sponsor the photography for the evening of not only the speakers but at the VIP reception. On a personal note, I had the opportunity to meet Willie Robertson, of Duck Dynasty and CEO of Duck Commander. I enjoyed their show and what they stood for, Christian morals and their spiritual heart. He wasn't there to speak but rather a supporter of a great cause for his friends the Donaldson's.

Col Oliver North
Joe Donaldson - Sams FurnitureCoffey AndersonPFC Jessica LynchChaplin Cpt Justin RobertsWillie Robertson, Col Oliver North, Lt Gen Leroy SiscoWillie RobertsonEvan Owens - Reboot Combat RecoveryGeorge ChmielLt Governor Tim GriffinCol Oliver NorthCol Oliver NorthCol Oliver NorthCol Oliver NorthCoffey Anderson, Joe Donaldson, Larra DonaldsonCoffey Anderson, Joe Donaldson, Larra Donaldson, Willie Robertson, Jessica Lynch, Col Oliver North, Lt Governor Tim Griffin, Lt Gen Leroy SiscoCol Oliver North, Keith Branch - Branch Photography

Mercy Ball 2017

Mercy Hospital hosts an annual Christmas Ball fundraiser that is an event to behold. I've had the honor to photograph special VIPs for Celebrate Arkansas Magazine for the past 4 years! Through that time I've met many great philanthropist of NWA that give of their funds and/or time for the great work of Mercy Hospital and the care it provides. The list of great men and women I've met are very impressive and makes me proud of what I get to do but be a part of NW Arkansas. This year I had the honor to meet and photograph Savvy Shields (2017 Ms America - grew up in Fayetteville, just a mile from the studio), Becky Henley (wife of Brian Henley - Celebrate Publisher), Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchison and David Wurm (VP of Sales Walmart - General Mills), just to name a few!

The event is typically the first weekend of December and if you're not in the holiday spirit by then, after this night you will be. It's not over the top "Christmas" but an impressive event with subtle hints of the holiday season introduction. Each year the JQ Hammons center is transformed from ceiling to floor in the most elegant style, it's a real treat to open the doors and see the room for the first time each year. From the exquisite table decor to the wall displays around the entire room, there is something to look at, even the hallways outside the ballroom are filled with decor to evoke a feeling of joy and excitement. Click here to see the Celebrate Arkansas magazine feature of the Mercy Ball.

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Savvy Shields

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Becky Henley

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Governor Asa Hutchison

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David Wurm

Rogers Chamber Annual Banquet '17

Photographing the Rogers Chamber of Commerce Annual Event was 'business as usual' throughout the evening, little did I know what a great keynote was waiting. Nick Hobbs did an excellent job interviewing John Roberts, it was very informative, entertaining and motivational. Nick announced he had a surprise speaker, it was Johnelle Hunt, widow of Johnnie Hunt (JB Hunt). You immediately love her, she's so down to earth, sweet, caring and approachable.

After a couple of minutes Nick asked Johnelle about how she and Johnnie got started, she immediately had my full attention. She gave their history of how they got started with the rice hulls business which I didn't know about. She went on to talk about their struggles and how optimistic Johnnie was, and very humble about her role even though we know she as a great support and very hard worker, just as she is today. I was inspired and motivated by the story she shared and how persistent optimism can pay off. I was further enriched by how they both always show gratitude for everyone that works with them, and that's a lot, and also their morality with professional values.

The day after the banquet, I was watching the movie "Founder" about McDonald's 'founder' Ray Kroc, and thought they really should make a movie about Johnnie and Johnelle Hunt, it would make a much better inspirational movie! There is a book "J.B. Hunt: The Long Haul to Success" that I am looking forward to reading more.
Rogers Lowell Chamber Annual BanquetJB Hunt PhotographyJohnelle HuntRogers Event Photographer