All “Rodes” Point To Wilson & Muir Bank

Howard Vogt, Susan Vogt, Frank Wilson


Rodes For Him, For Her, opened in Louisville in 1914. Wilson & Muir Bank (WMB) opened its first office in Kentucky in 1865. Rodes was one of WMB’s first commercial clients in Louisville, years before WMB opened their St Matthews office.  “It was a great match from the beginning,” said Frank Wilson, President & CEO of Wilson & Muir Bank. “Two of Kentucky’s oldest businesses partnering and growing together,” added Wilson.

Although Rodes experienced many changes as their business grew, WMB was there to guide them. “Given their business expertise, WMB has helped us refine and define our plans for true success… and that is what sets WMB apart,” said Howard Vogt, President and co-owner of Rodes.

Wilson attributes his career path a direct result of his relationship with Rodes. After graduating from college his father took him to Rodes to get a couple of suits for job interviews. The next stop was Wilson & Muir Bank where his father cosigned a loan to repay him for the suits. It was at that time he was offered a bank teller job from CEO Robert E. Sutherland. It was Sutherland and Lawrence Smith, the patriarch of the family business, who first established the relationship between WMB and Rodes and 35 years later it carries on.

“WMB listened and truly partnered with Rodes during our growth,” said Howard. “They not only looked at our business, but took the time to get to know us,” added Howard.

Susan Vogt, co-owner of Rodes, is the daughter of Lawrence Smith. “Lawrence was one of the finest and most honorable individuals we ever had the privilege of working with,” said Wilson. Wilson noted that Smith set very high standards as a business operator and was a great mentor to Howard and Susan. “They have carried on a great tradition of excellence, as Rodes is the premiere clothing store in the city, and have been very generous with their philanthropic efforts, supporting many great causes including Derby Divas and Gilda’s Club. Rodes and the Vogts are true assets to Louisville,” said Wilson.

“We use WMB for everything and tell everyone who will listen what a true partner they are,” said Howard. “I could not be more proud to be associated with such an exceptional organization, Howard added.

“At Rodes they say, ‘Relationships are priceless’ and at WMB, we couldn’t agree more,” concluded Wilson.

The Irrepressible Carla Sue

The Voice-Tribune’s longtime columnist discusses society, philanthropy and her legacy

By Laura Ross

Photos by Andrea Hutchinson

Some people need no introduction. Some, like Carla Sue, can even get by on just their first name alone.

The longtime columnist penned her first story for The Voice of St. Matthews when she was just 10 years old. By her account, it was a “riveting” piece about a Sunday bridge party and dinner held by the ladies of Springdale Presbyterian Church. She wrote regular social columns from that point on and throughout her high school years, focusing on her neighborhood of Springdale/Worthington (located off of Hwy. 22.) Carla Sue took a short hiatus from writing when she married the love of her life, Brad Broecker, in 1961, and raised two daughters, Leslie and Amy. She returned to what became known as The Voice-Tribune in the late 1960s with a weekly column, Partyline, and turned in her last column earlier this year.

Carla Sue Broecker with husband Brad.

The active octogenarian has been around the world (literally) and around the block many times. She knows the secrets and she knows the scoop. Her columns took her into many of the most exclusive homes, the best parties and the most successful fundraisers. She never suffered a bore but was always gracious and held an enviable Rolodex.

Carla Sue and her husband are also successful fundraisers, giving and raising hundreds of thousands of dollars for charities across Louisville. They have a soft spot for the Louisville Deaf Oral School, now Heuser Hearing and Language Academy, and put their hearts into many fundraisers, including operating and running a resale shop called Fabulous Finds for more than 20 years, all to benefit the school. When the shop closed, the Broeckers opened their expansive farm, Running Water, to brides and grooms looking for a memorable nuptial spot. The wedding rentals also benefited the school.

 Their charitable endeavors garnered the couple the 2018 Philanthropists of the Year award by the Association of Fundraising Professionals of Greater Louisville.

Carla Sue’s deep-throated laugh is legendary, her wit acerbic and salty. She doesn’t mince words about her experiences over the years. She took a few minutes out of her still-hectic schedule recently to be on the other side of the story with The Voice-Tribune.

Did you really write your first Voice column when you were 10 years old?

Yes, I did. I talk a lot, and everyone knew that,” Carla Sue stated. “At the time, every neighborhood cluster had its own column in The Voice of St. Matthews, saying things like ‘Springdale ladies entertained 16 for dinner after church. It was delicious.’ It was not interesting at all, but if you lived in the country, there wasn’t that much to do. I was at a party with my mother and The Voice’s publisher asked me if I read his paper. I said, ‘No, there’s nothing interesting in it!’ He looked at me and said, ‘Well, then write something interesting.’ So, I did. I started writing what went on in Springdale and Worthington. There were so few people out here that you knew everything that went on. I can remember needing my mother for something, and I knew she was playing cards but not where she was. I called the Harrods Creek operator and said ‘Hi, I can’t find my mother. She is playing bridge somewhere in your area.’ The operator said, ‘Certainly!’ and found the number just on that information. The phone operators knew everything – who was sleeping with who, who was where and when. So, I learned all the ways to get the news and make connections quickly. In those days, no one cared what went on in other neighborhoods. We cared about what went on in our own neighborhood.”

 You left to raise a family, but you eventually returned to The Voice, correct?

There was a lapse of several years where I was raising the kids, but then one of The Voice’s owners approached me in the late 1960s and said, ‘Why don’t you write about your travels?’” she explained. “It then moved into entertaining and parties. I’ve gone through several Voice owners, but the Partyline stayed through all.”

You are legendary in this town.

Oh, no, not legendary,” she responded. “I’m just old.”

Were you feared or revered by hostesses and event planners?

Oh, I’ll take revered,” she said with a belly laugh. “I tried to be really positive with charitable events. You had the good events and then, you had to take the boring – church, school, club meetings and events – and treat them the same. I had to paint its face and make it look good, and I was good at that. I enjoyed going to most events because Brad and I like people. We like to be out and about. Even if it was a bingo night at the Knights of Columbus, there would always be someone there who was fun and who I could talk with.”

But, what about those bad events?

Some of the Derby parties were just awful, but you couldn’t hurt someone’s feelings,” she admitted. “I’d look at Brad and say, ‘Can we leave now?’ But I always wrote positive things about it. Sometimes, some events were worse than you could discuss or maybe you walked in on someone doing the dirty deed. You couldn’t put that in the story, of course, but you could allude to the fact that certain people had disappeared from the party. It was fun to do. As a kid, I kept a diary. As I got older and did this, I realized I didn’t need to keep a diary. I just needed to clip it out of the paper.”

 What were your favorite events to cover?

By far, the best parties and events were ones that raised money for children’s charities,” she said. “You always felt good about it. You’d raise a lot of money then see the results later. In the best parties, the mix of people is the most important thing. It can be a hog-calling contest and if you have the right people there who are fun, delightful people, it will work. They don’t have to be elite society and come in their Jaguars, but whoever they are, they should always bring their checkbooks.”

Why did you and Brad choose to be so involved with the Louisville Deaf Oral School (now Heuser Hearing and Language Academy)?

When I was a member of the Women’s Club, someone asked me to serve on the Louisville Deaf Oral School’s board,” she recalled. “You know, my grandmother and all my aunts were probably deaf as posts, and I always thought everyone in my family just TALKED REALLY LOUD! So, I said yes. I realized then that there just was never enough money given to help these children, so we started raising money.

“I visited my friend Eleanor Goldberg in Florida for the winter, and she took me to this thrift shop and I had the best time,” she continued. “We talked all night about how we could do that to raise money for charity. We rented a building on Frankfort Avenue that actually once was my family’s dairy business, and we created Fabulous Finds. We called everyone we knew and said, ‘Here’s what we’re doing, either send us stuff, send a check or come and volunteer.’ And, amazingly, it worked. We were in business for more than 20 years, raising money for the school.

“My friends all helped in different ways,” she said. “Since I like poking around in people’s garages and yard sales, I became the caller. I’d pick up the phone and say, ‘Hey, I heard you’re getting a divorce and if there’s anything you don’t want, I’ll take it.’ Or, ‘If your poor Aunt Maude dies, give us a call and we’ll pick up her furniture.’” That was my job. I’m nosy, I’m curious and I love seeing what’s in people’s houses. We were always the first ones at the funeral home visitations. We were shameless, but we raised a lot of money.”

Did you see yourself as the keeper of Louisville society’s deepest secrets?

You know, if I liked you, I kept your secrets,” she said. “I’ve seen a lot of the good, bad and ugly, but honestly, most things turn out OK around Louisville. There are always going to be shitty people in the world, but the trick is to never listen to them. Just smile and move on. There’s always a better person somewhere. Louisville is a nice place to live and raise children. People are friendly. The weather is iffy, but what can you do? But I think in Podunk, Iowa, it must be nice, too. It’s always about the people you meet. Nice people make nice places.”

How is Louisville society changing with the times?

 When I look back, there would be the rich women having lunches or playing bridge or the quilting parties at churches,” she commented. “No one has quilting parties anymore. It’s different things now, and people move on. There’s always a generation coming along who is in the spot where you were when you were their age. We’ll all drop dead, and someone else will pick up the party.

“Social media is a foreign object to me, but it’s everywhere now,” she said. “But something else will always come along that will put that in the shade. It will be some new way to raise money for charity. I think life goes on, and supposedly it gets better. People will always give to help others.”

What is your legacy in the society annals of Louisville?

I told good stories,” she maintained. “It’s simple. People like to be liked. They like to be wanted. They like to be needed. It builds their self-esteem, and they go out and they do wonderful things because it makes them feel great, and that’s fine by me. I’ll write about how wonderful you are because you’ve done something, even if you’re an ass the rest of the time, you still did that one good thing. It’s just our world. I was reading a history of 15th century France and England recently, and so much of it is like now. Everyone wants to be the top of the hill, the best. Today, there are just different hills and ways to get there.”

How do you sum up your long run as The Voice’s society columnist?

I met everyone,” she said. “I always loved talking with old people. Old people do it their way. They don’t care about being in the paper, and they were the most fun to interview. I loved writing for The Voice. It was a pain in the ass sometimes, but I honestly loved doing it. I met wonderful, fun people, and of course, the eccentric ones, too.

“Life is good most of the time,” she expressed. “I enjoy laughing and I enjoy life. It’s had its shitty moments, but I have friends who never see the blue sky. It’s always cloudy for them, and I couldn’t live like that. I don’t know how I’d cure that other than maybe having a bourbon.” VT

  A minute with Carla Sue Broecker

In the tradition of James Lipton’s popular questionnaire at the end of his “Inside the Actors’ Studio” television show, we prompted Carla Sue with the list of rapid-fire, stream-of-consciousness questions used on that show:

What is your favorite word?


What is your favorite curse word?


What turns you on creatively, spiritually or emotionally?


What angers you?

“Can I name names?” (Laughs) “People who are not generous or giving.”

What sound do you love?

“I love the peace and quiet, but I’d say I also love classical piano.”

What profession other than your own would you have attempted?

“I don’t know – I had no ambition. I was just a kid from the country and I fell into this because the paper’s owner engaged me in conversation one day and told me to write something I’d read. I never looked back.”

What is your idea of perfect happiness?

“Knowing I could live another 30 years with my husband, Brad. I’d like to say 50 years, but we’re too damn old for that.”

Which historical figure do you identify with?

“Queen Victoria because she always had her way. She had the doo-das to do her work, she married the man she loved and she ruled the world, or most of it.”

If heaven exists, what would you like God to say when you arrive at the pearly gates?

“Actually, I’d rather be the one to ask him a question. I’d say, ‘Where is everyone? Where’s the party?!’”

Signature Chefs Auction

Photos by Kathryn Harrington and Andrea Hutchinson

The Signature Chefs Auction, an annual fundraiser hosted by March of Dimes Kentuckiana, was held this year at the Omni Hotel on Nov. 8. The evening featured delicious gourmet food prepared by 30 of Louisville’s best chefs. The evening saw a record-breaking $300,000 raised for March of Dimes, which is dedicated to researching and advocating for full-term pregnancies and the health of mothers and babies.

Poets, Rock Stars, and Holy Men

“When I am gifted an image, a dream, a vision via the holy unholy realms of the creative imagination, I do all I can to help it reach fruition.”
— Ron Whitehead

Louisville Free Public Library’s unparalleled new exhibit

By Laura Ross

At first glance, it’s an eclectic group that includes Bono, President Jimmy Carter, the Dalai Lama and Wendell Berry. The common thread for all is poetry. A new exhibit opening Nov. 17, at the Louisville Main Library, “Poets, Rock Stars, and Holy Men: A Literary Renaissance,” features more than 25 original poetry broadsides – many signed by the artists – from the University of Louisville’s White Fields Press Collection. 

First published in the 1990s as part of White Fields Press’s Published in Heaven poster series, the exhibit includes work by some of the world’s most influential poets, writers, musicians, journalists, artists and cultural leaders along with correspondence between White Fields Press co-founder Ron Whitehead and the artists.   

The collection serves as an introduction to modern and contemporary poetry for younger readers. For those familiar with the poetry landscape, it serves as a refresher course covering some of the world’s most influential poets.

“Hundreds of children, teens and adults walk through the Bernheim Gallery daily, so even people who did not specifically come to see an art exhibit at the library can’t help but engage and interact with it in some way,” said Paul Burns, gallery director for the Louisville Free Public Library. “Providing access to knowledge and information at all stages of learning is what the library is all about. Accomplishing that goal in ways that engage youth in different and dynamic ways is why exhibits like this are vital.”   

For poet and writer Ron Whitehead, the return of some of the Published in Heaven series is both enlightening and exciting. “I hope folks are uplifted and inspired to create their own original work,” he said, emphasizing the underlying need in many to listen closely to the creative forces within. “By living and being my dream, each and every moment is filled with inspired synchronicity,” he added.  “I listen to my intuition. When I am gifted an image, a dream, a vision via the holy unholy realms of the creative imagination, I do all I can to help it reach fruition, whether it be a new book or album or adventure.”

White Fields Press was established in 1992 by Whitehead and Kent Fielding, who also founded the movement Rant for the Literary Renaissance. White Fields Press produced several books, chapbooks and audio recordings that included poets such as Allen Ginsberg, Diane di Prima, Seamus Heaney, Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Amiri Baraka and Eithne Strong. Whitehead and Fielding gifted much of the work to the University of Louisville archives and special collections. The opening of the exhibit will also serve as the launch of Whitehead’s new book and CD, “Kentucky Bound.”

“Poets, Rock Stars and Holy Men,” said Burns, showcases some of the best poetic minds of the past 50 years. “While poetry may not be the first thing that people think of when they think of Louisville, the work that came out of the White Fields Press is proof that that our city cultivates great art, and all Louisvillians can be proud of this unique collection,” said Burns. “It captures a highly creative and specific time that should be inspiring for people who have creative vision.” VT

“Poets, Rock Stars, and Holy Men: A Literary Renaissance” will be on display at the Main Library (301 York St.) from Nov. 17, through Jan. 13. A free opening reception and poetry reading featuring Ron Whitehead will be held at the Main Library at 2 p.m. on Nov. 17. For more information, visit or call 502.574.1611.

Pride at the Museum

Photos by Andrea Hutchinson

Held at the Speed Art Museum on Nov. 9, Pride at the Museum featured entertainment from Louisville Ballet, Louisville Orchestra’s Teddy Abrams, DJ S.Y.I.M.O.N.E, drag performers from PLAY Louisville and many more. The event was held to celebrate Louisville’s inclusivity and to raise funds for University of Louisville’s LGBT Center.

Brain Ball

Photos by Kathryn Harrington

BIAK hosted its 16th annual Brain Ball fundraiser at the Louisville Marriott Downtown on Nov. 10. Brain injury survivors were honored at the Derby-themed gala, where guests enjoyed dinner, dancing and an epic after party.

What to Wear to the Candle GlowGala

Black Halo dress, $375; Jarin earrings, $115; Jarin necklace, $215; Sondra Roberts velvet clutch, $80. Samuelsohn tuxedo, $1,595; Brackish bow tie, $225; Eton formal black shirt, $275.

Photos and styling by Andrea Hutchinson

Models: Lauren Hendricks and Josh Johnson

Assisted by Kelly Vetter

In preparation of Hosparus Health’s Candle Glow Gala on Dec. 1, Rodes For Him For Her helped us put together a few luminous looks for the big night. To show off the brilliant attire, we recruited Glow Lounge co-chair Lauren Hendricks and Glow Lounge committee member Josh Johnson.

Black Halo dress, $375; Jarin earrings, $115; Jarin necklace, $215; Sondra Roberts velvet clutch, $80.

Samuelsohn tuxedo, $1,595; Brackish bow tie, $225; Eton formal black shirt, $275.

Shoshanna black polka dot dress, $795; Ziner pearl flower earrings, $115; Ziner pearl necklace, $425; Sondra Roberts sparkle clutch, $70.

Byron British black tux, $1,095; Eton formal white shirt, $275; Randy Hanauer cummerbund and tie, $195.

Ema Savahl hand-painted nude gown, $2,425; Margo Morrison earrings $250.

Rodes For Him For Her

4938 Brownsboro Road


Dwellings Holiday Open House

Photos by Kathryn Harrington

The furniture, accessory and design experts at Dwellings hosted holiday shoppers on the evening of Nov. 10. Guests were served refreshments as they browsed around and took advantage of early holiday savings. There were also special Christmas decor giveaways during the day.

Nonprofit News

Ymca Of Greater Louisville Recognizes 2018 Youth Character Award Honorees

The YMCA of Greater Louisville announced the 2018 Youth Character Award honorees on Nov. 1, presenting awards to 15 outstanding youth from the Louisville area.

Recipients of The Youth Character Awards were selected for exemplifying exceptional leadership and commitment to strengthening our community, embodying the Y’s core values of caring, honesty, respect and responsibility. The honorees were also recognized for their contributions to academics and athletics, as well as their roles in volunteer- and leadership-related activities.

The Youth Character Awards, which celebrates exemplary teens ages 13 through 17, come with a $1,500 scholarship.

1. Grace Bagga – Age 17, Kentucky Country Day (KCD)

Nominated by: Candace Medina

2. Jolene Ballard – Age 17, duPont Manual High School

Nominated by: Jill Ballard

3. Lorena Bonet Velazquez – Age 17, Fairdale High School

Nominated by: Fairdale High School

4. Christiana Brown – Age 15, Central High School

Nominated by: Brittany Bryant

5. Taurino Castaneda – Age 16, Louisville Male High School

Nominated by: Vicky Schweickhardt

6. Mercy Evanson – Age 17, Central High School

Nominated by: Jana Costner

7. Jordyn Gibson – Age 17, duPont Manual High School

Nominated by: Dennis Robinson

8. Briana Johnson – Age 15, duPont Manual High School

Nominated by: Cindy Johnson

9. Alyssia Leach – Age 17, duPont Manual High School

Nominated by: Dennis Robinson

10. Jackson McArthur – Age 17, Trinity High School

Nominated by: Tony Lewis

11. Hailey Miller – Age 17, Butler Traditional High School

Nominated by: Jonathan Joseph

12. Keith Phillips II – Age 16, Eastern High School

Nominated by: N’Namdi Paskins

13. Allison Rogers – Age 17, South Oldham High School

Nominated by: Laurie Rogers

14. Tori Vestal – Age 17, duPont Manual High School

Nominated by: Michelle Leslie

15. Morgan White – Age 17, Eastern High School

Nominated by: Stephanie Morgan-White

Virtuous Women Empowerment of Louisville Announces Fall Festival

Virtuous Women Empowerment of Louisville (VWEL) invites the public to a Harvest Fall Festival event Nov. 17, 2018, at St. Stephens Community Life Center, 1508 West Kentucky St., from 3 to 5 p.m. The festive event is for all ages and will feature a chili cook-off, turkey costume contest for kids, food vendors, games, DJ, bounce houses and a face painter.

“We want to celebrate the season of being thankful by hosting a harvest event that the entire family can enjoy and support a worthwhile cause in the community,” said Megan Bell, president of Virtuous Women Empowerment of Louisville. “The proceeds from this event will go directly to the numerous women’s organizations we support to help women and children in Kentuckiana.”

VWEL is a newly-formed 501c3 nonprofit made up of women from all ages, races and backgrounds with one goal in mind: to support women in the community through mentoring, educational resources, financial and business opportunities.

“We are living in a day and age when we have got to do something to stop the negativity in this country,” said Bell. “We are simply a group of women who want to do something positive and this is one way to help during a time of need.”

Children under three are free. Adults are $10, senior citizens are $2. Tickets will be sold at the door. 

Over $26,600 Donated to Two Local Charities by Brownsboro Hardware & Paint

Owner of Brownsboro Hardware & Paint Jim Lehrer, Dawne Gee representing A Recipe to End Hunger, Beth Northrup representing Kentucky Harvest and Jeremy Melloan with Sysco Foods.

On Oct. 31, Brownsboro Hardware & Paint presented two checks for over $13,300 each to two local charities from this year’s EGGFest event. The EGGFest event was held at Brownsboro Hardware & Paint the first weekend of August and featured great food coming off 100 Big Green Eggs. A team of volunteers from Sysco Foods help to feed the thousands of attendees.

The two local charities are A Recipe to End Hunger, which provides food to underprivileged children over the weekend, and Kentucky Harvest, which distributes food to food pantries all over our region.

According to owner Jim Lehrer, “Brownsboro Hardware & Paint is thankful for the support of our community and this is one of the ways we like to give back. Over the past six years, we have given over $100,000 to local charities as a result of our EGGFest event.”

Besides Sysco Foods of Louisville, other key sponsors of the event include West Sixth Brewing Company, The Kentucky Pork Producers and The Kentucky Beef Council.

Waterfront Botanical Gardens and TreesLouisville Tree Planting to take place Nov. 17

Thanks to a grant from the CSX Foundation and a collaboration between Waterfront Botanical Gardens and TreesLouisville Inc., there will be a community tree planting of 90 trees on the site of the future botanical gardens, along the Butchertown Greenway, on Nov. 17, from 9:30 to 11 a.m.

Waterfront Botanical Gardens is working with TreesLouisville to re-green the easternmost hillside of the landfill property. The trees will be part of the botanical display of the gardens and will provide shade in the future Woodlands Garden on the property.

Instruction on proper tree planting will be provided at 9:30 a.m. with the planting to follow. Trees to be planted include: Sugar Maple; Dogwood; Scarlet Oak, Bur Oak; Shumard Oak; and Red Maple.

Refreshments will be provided. Bring your own shovel, water bottle and gloves. Dress accordingly for outdoor work.

Boutique Buzz

Sadie Makes 4 Celebrates Grand Opening

On Nov. 10, a truly different kind of kids’ store opened its doors on Frankfort Avenue. At Sadie Makes 4, shoppers can find an eclectic mix of décor, books, gifts, toys etc., all with an eye for quality, an element of art and design and fun. Items come from small, independent makers and are great for special gifts. While there, you can enjoy some espresso, have a snack and watch the kids play in a dedicated play area.

The idea for the store was born five years ago, around the same time that Lori Pritche had her fourth child (a surprise!) at the age of 46. That child was Sadie, and Sadie Makes 4. After Sadie was ready for kindergarten, the store was ready to be made real.

Follow the store on Facebook and Instagram @sadiemakes4. Store hours are 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday.

Sadie Makes 4

2246 Frankfort Ave.


The Big Burn

Photos by John H. Harralson Jr.

On Oct. 13, Carol Whayne and her family hosted the Big Burn on her Ohio River property in Westport, Kentucky. Driftwood and logs deposited on the riverbank are collected throughout the year and set ablaze every fall in the annual event. The enormous bonfire and gallons of world-famous chili from Frank’s Meats and Produce made for a festive evening while enjoying “the fire that can be seen from space.”