Warner's World

Celebrating a life well-lived … in The Mission of Yahweh kitchen … with lasagna

Celebrating a life well lived … in The Mission of Yahweh kitchen … with lasagna

To honor the memory of the late John Blaisdell, Chairman and CEO of Salient Partners LP and the company itself, guests gathered at The Mission of Yahweh “House of Grace” which houses the kitchen.

Warner Roberts welcomed guests and introduced Executive Director Richard Hill to present opening remarks and remembrances of Blaisdell.

Blaisdell loved The Mission of Yahweh homeless shelter for women and children that was introduced to him by his former wife, Monica Hartland. Together they designed an event to provide the women and children at The Mission an incredible, magical fantasyland for Christmas. Hence, Christmas on a Mission was born 13 years ago. Starting at 9:00 on Christmas morning, the children awaken to find a snow-covered campus, with Santa, a 25-foot slide, a DJ providing music, great food, games and many of the gifts they requested on their Christmas wish-list. The moms find Santa’s elves leading them to their gift—a substantial piece of luggage brimming with wrapped gifts of every conceivable luxury accessory a women might want or need. All in all, a fantastic winter wonderland.

Leading up to Christmas morning, Hartland and Blaisdell created “wrapping parties” for the volunteer “Santa Elves.” It was at these gatherings that Blaisdell, a gourmet chef, decided to start a “lasagna” competition. As would be expected, oftentimes he was declared the winner. This contest became the highlight of the “wrapping parties.”

Blaisdell included everyone at Salient Partners, and the company has supported them throughout all the years. Bill Enszer, CEO of Salient, spoke lovingly of Blaisdell and how his leadership had guided the company not only in business but in philanthropy. Greg Reid, President of Salient, recalled how Blaisdell introduced The Mission to him and his wife Janelle, who is now on the Mission board. Reid himself is Chairman of the newly-formed committee to raise funds for a new Mission dorm.

After a heartfelt speech from Blaisdell’s daughter, Megan Blaisdell Willis, friends shared many remembrances. All were invited outside to view the new bronze plaque commemorating “John Blaisdell and Salient Partners LP.”

Enjoying the lavish lasagna dinner were Kaitlin Blaisdell, Pam and Ron Sterlekar, Monica Hartland, Kathy Hill, Janelle Reid, Hannah McNair, Brad Marks, Julie Pitts, Charlie Hartland, Amber Hartland and Rebecca Thelander.

<a href="https://thesocialbook.com/author/warner/" target="_self">Warner Roberts</a>

Warner Roberts

Social Book Contributor

Warner Roberts' talent and creativity have led to her success in many careers: fashion model, award-winning television journalist, actress in theater and films, multi-millions fundraiser, interviewer, speaker, magazine writer, publisher, author, and most importantly wife, mother, and grandmother. Her decades of support and dedication to Houston charities is legendary as she produced the first March of Dimes Ball and later "Best Dressed, chaired the first Leukemia Gala, and raised the funds to build the first dormitory for The Mission of Yahweh homeless shelter which has helped countless women and children to rebuild their lives. Warner created The Social Book (nee Houston Calendar of Social Events) in 1996 and added The Social Book's Houston Treasures Award in 2003 to recognize the extraordinary Houstonians who make our city great. She lent her mantra to the title of her best-selling memoir, "Life is an Adventure!" (Photo: Debbie Porter)

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