Chenault Family National Association
MINUTES OF THE 70th ANNUAL REUNION
19-21 Jul 2019, Louisville, Kentucky
Registration for the 70th Annual Chenault Family National Association Reunion commenced at 4:00 p.m. Friday, July 19, 2019, at The Galt House Hotel in Louisville, KY. The hospitality area opened providing informal visiting, as well as providing attendees an opportunity to examine various displays of family and reunion history, bid on silent auction items donated by attendees, and purchase souvenirs from the association.
The later opening time for registration afforded everyone who was interested in touring the Filson Club and Historical Society the opportunity to do so. Several attendees were able to view the Bible reportedly having belonged to Estienne Cheneau, our ancestor.
Friday Evening, July 19, 2019 —
The reception and get-acquainted session began at 7:00 p.m. with a call to order by President Larkin Chenault. He welcomed attendees from near and far and made a few announcements about the weekend’s activities. He asked Vice President Charlie Mellick to open the session with a prayer and the reading of the Chenault prayer printed on the back page of the program.
President Chenault then invited each family group to the front of the room to introduce themselves and be photographed as has become our tradition in this session.
The featured speaker for the evening, Steve Wiser, a Louisville architect and historian, presented a very informative and entertaining view of the city’s history, the architects who designed many of the significant buildings and parks in the area, and others whose vision and creativity enabled them to make well-known contributions to our lives.
President Chenault reminded everyone that a breakfast buffet would be provided attendees in our meeting room beginning at 7:00 a.m. Saturday. He adjourned the session and encouraged everyone to enjoy the hospitality time to visit and get acquainted with each other.
Saturday Morning Session, July 20, 2019 —
President Larkin Chenault called the meeting to order and welcomed everyone. After a few brief announcements concerning the day’s activities including the afternoon cruise on the Belle of Louisville and the schedule for the evening events, he invited Libby Chenault to introduced the morning’s program. She called on Sue Chenault to read a poem she wrote about DNA testing, the subject of the session. Following the reading, Libby introduced the special speaker for the session. Debra Smith Renard, a Louisville genealogist who employs the use of genealogical DNA in her research, presented a program entitled "Starting a DNA Testing Plan." The material she covered answered many of the questions attendees had regarding the use of DNA in their research, as well as questions about the providers of DNA results.
Following the presentation, President Chenault asked for everyone’s indulgence in avoiding a break since the session needed to conclude by 11:00 a.m. to allow time to proceed to the Belle of Louisville for the cruise. He indicated he would move quickly through the business meeting items to facilitate that.
Saturday Morning Annual Business Meeting, July 20, 2019 —
President Chenault called the annual business meeting to order and asked Richard Stockton to deliver an invocation. He asked Secretary Sue Chenault to present the minutes of the 2018 business meeting. Since the minutes had been posted on the website and copies were included in the registration packets, they were not read. Sue asked for any changes or additions, and when none were requested, a motion to accept them was made and passed approving the minutes.
Treasurer Gus Mellick presented the financial report. Gus reminded attendees that the reporting period now covers a fiscal year from April1-March 30 of each reporting year to stabilize the income/outgo of finances. A motion to accept the report as presented was made and passed. Gus updated attendees on the effort to receive a tax-exempt status for the organization before next year.
President Chenault, having previously confirmed that no committee chair had any changes to report, bypassed committee reports except to mention that the reunion sites in 2020 and 2021 had already been decided as Hot Springs, Arkansas, and Williamsburg, Virginia, respectively. The Nominating Committee, Luisa deVarona Chenault, Susan Thurman, and Margaret Stockton, recommended a slate of officers for 2019-2020 as follows: Charlie Mellick, President; (no nominee at present), 1st VP; Gus Mellick, Treasurer; and Sue Chenault, Secretary/Historian. A motion to accept the recommendation was made and passed. A motion was also made and passed to keep the same individuals in place as the Nominating Committee.
Since there was no discussion of old business, President Chenault asked Sue Chenault to give a brief view of an idea whereby she explained that the idea would be a way of improving communication with all members across the country. Members listed in the directory would be divided by geographical regions with an "ambassador" assigned to each region. That ambassador would assume the responsibility for communications with members in their region informing them of news and upcoming events and soliciting input to relay to association leadership. Ambassadors could enlist the assistance of others within their region to help in their efforts. More about the structure of the plan and the number of ambassadors needed will be communicated in the next few months. If a trial of the idea can be arranged before the reunion in Hot Springs, attendees at that reunion can determine if a full roll-out of the plan should be pursued.
President Chenault thanked everyone and adjourned the meeting.
Annual Banquet and Installation of Officers, Saturday Dinner,
July 20, 2019 —
Prior to the annual banquet, attendees gathered early in the hospitality area at the request of the Program Committee for the presentation of the Memorial Honor Roll. The session began with a showing of a tribute to the Apollo 11 landing on the moon fifty years ago. President Chenault then turned the program over to those who had prayers of remembrance for our fallen members. Vice President Charlie Mellick, in addition to offering prayers, also read from scriptures from Ecclesiastes. Following the prayers and readings, a PowerPoint presentation honoring our "Fallen Leaves" was viewed
President Chenault asked the attendees to gather on the stairs outside the meeting room for a group photo before proceeding into the room where the dinner would be held.
After everyone was seated for dinner, President Larkin Chenault called the session to order, and a blessing was offered. After dinner, the speaker, Kadie Engstrom, archivist with the Belle of Louisville, was introduced. Her presentation brought a lot of laughter as she not only entertained the group, but educated them on the importance of steamboats in American history.
The results of the Silent Auction were announced by Carlisle Chenault, and the "bread basket" was passed according to our tradition.
The installation of officers was handled by President Chenault after he announced the addition of a candidate for 1st Vice President, Jerry Chenault, who was approved by the attendees after a motion to accept his addition to the slate of officers. Newly-inducted President Charlie Mellick presented the plaque of appreciation to out-going President Larkin Chenault and both delivered their remarks.
The results of the "bread basket" contribution were announced by Gus Mellick, Treasurer.
The 70th annual reunion was adjourned.
Carolyn Sue Chenault,