Author Greg McKeown Advises ‘Saying No’ To Non-Essential Activities At Well-Attended Executives in Action Breakfast

Ashlee Kleinert

Ashlee Kleinert

London-born author and lecturer Greg McKeown, who’s written a best-selling book called “Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less,” has talked to the employees of cutting-edge companies ranging from Google and Apple to Pixar and Facebook. So it’s fitting that McKeown was selected to keynote the annual Book & Breakfast event on Friday, February 13 for Ashlee and Chris Kleinert’s Executives in Action group, which dispatches senior executives to work pro bono with nonprofits.

Dallas Country Club ballroom fir Books and Breakfast

Dallas Country Club ballroom fir Books and Breakfast

Shelly Slater and Clay Huffstutter

Shelly Slater and Clay Huffstutter

Among the 400 guests at the Dallas Country Club, after all, were some of this area’s most innovative and fascinating executive leaders. Among them: Brent Christopher of Communities Foundation of Texas, Clint McDonnough of EY, Colleen Affeldt of RGT Financial Advisors, independent movie producer Gary Cogill with wife Hayley Hamilton Cogill, Terry Flowers of St. Philip’s School,Katie Pedigo of New Friends New Life, WFAA Channel 8’s Shelly Slater with husband Clay Huffstutter and Minerva Consulting’s sisters Jesse Ihde and Ashley Elsey with Jan Osborn, Robin Bagwell.    Against the back wall was seated a host of folks social media posting on laptops.

Jesse Ihde, Robin Bagwell, Jan Osborn and Ashley Elsey

Jesse Ihde, Robin Bagwell, Jan Osborn and Ashley Elsey

Gary Cogill and Greg McKeown

Gary Cogill and Greg McKeown

Following an entertaining introduction by Cogill, McKeown jumped right into the morning’s topic, explaining and criticizing the “you-can-have-it-all,” “say-yes-to-everything” attitudes so many of us have at home and work. Instead, like a grown up version of Harry Potter, he advised, we need to “start saying no a lot,” in order to make the best and highest use of our time.

We can start doing that by stripping away all the “non-essentials,” McKeown said, and prioritizing the important things that are left. “If you don’t prioritize your life,” he added, “somebody else will.”

One “priority” we could do without, he said as an example, is receiving email on our smartphones. “It is not a productivity tool,” McKeown said of monitoring email 24/7. In fact it’s the opposite, he suggested–detracting from our ability to reflect and think deeply about what’s really important.

When it was over, one executive in the audience said he related to McKeown’s talk in a big way. “I think it’s a great message … and makes tons of sense,” said Stewart Slack of KDC. “He talked about not focusing on the right things, and I’m the king of that.”

OOPS ALERT: Park Cities Cause May Have Broken A Dallas Law

Oh, dear! It may have happened again. According to reports, those lovely folks at Robert S. Hyer Elementary School PTA had a fundraiser last Friday at the F.I.G. Nothing is better than fundraising for education. They had all types of auction items like trips and dinners and “stuff.” Unfortunately they may have broken the law.

Two items had the following description:

“Hyer Auction is going to best ever. How cute are these puppies???? A Morkie and a Malitpoo. Who will be the lucky family to take them home Feb. 27th??? These adorable puppies are from Texas Teacups in Snider Plaza. Each puppy will be auctioned separately. Puppies will be on-site the night of the event.

  • “Female malti-poo is hypoallergenic, non-shedding with a sweet loving personaility. They are smart and easy to train. Size will be 4-5 lbs when fully grown.
  • “Male Morkie- This puppy is also hypoallergenic, non-shedding with a fun and playful personality. Size will also be 4-5 lbs when full grown.”

They promoted the pups on their Facebook page complete with pictures and on Page 2 of  the February 26th Park Cities News.

Alas, according to Dallas City Ordinance Sec. 7-7.6, it’s illegal to auction an animal in the city of Dallas for any type of fundraising. True, the money was to benefit a University Park group and the puppies were provided by Teacup and Toy Pets Boutique located in Snider Plaza, but the auction took place in Dallas.

Let’s hope that someone stepped in and advised organizers to pull the pups from the auction bloc.

Fashion Stars For A Cause Shone Among The Diamond Doctor Gems

Across town at Diamond Doctor, another fashionable group was partying on Thursday, February 12. But there were no hangars or mannequins. Instead there were delicious gems filling cases throughout.

Stacy and David Blank

Stacy and David Blank

Despite Diamond Doctor David Blank’s having a rough month or two (the Blank family all suffered the flu and David’s mom had a stay in ICU), he and wife Stacy were all smiles over the new DD sign out front. The light sign was allowing DD to tastefully showcase causes and specials while not going Vegas Strip.

At one point, Fashion Stars for a Cause Founder/Chair Yvonne Crum tried to assemble the 2015 crop for a photo on the stairs. A couple were missing, but the photo opp took place anyhow.

Toni Munoz Hunt

Toni Munoz Hunt

The normally slim, trim Honorary Co-Chair/model Toni Munoz Hunt looked fabulous in a red lace gown. However there was a slight bulge. Was it a big noontime lunch? Nope. She and husband Daniel Hunt are expecting a baby Munoz Hunt.

At one counter, Nita Hudson looking like a Fashion Star was decked out in electric blue cocktail dress and a fabulous diamond necklace with incredible opal stone pendant. Nita was telling about her rescue St. Bernard/Great Pyrenees, when husband Chris appeared. When some noted Nita’s ring, she told how she had admitted it for a while at DD. One day she was surprised to learn that it had been purchased. Heartbroken she was. That is until Chris presented it to her. Seems sneaky David had met Chris off premises and arranged the purchase including paperwork naming a “faux” purchaser.

Carolyn Tillery and Nita Hudson

Carolyn Tillery and Nita Hudson

As for Fashion Stars, the event will showcase fashions from Belk at the Dallas Country Club on Friday, March 20, with the Suzie Humphreys as emcee and Debbie Murray will be the speaker.

Front row from the left: Yvonne Crum, Toni Munoz Hunt and  Daniel Hunt with the Fashion Stars for a Cause

Front row from the left: Carolyn Tillery, Yvonne Crum, Toni Munoz Hunt and Daniel Hunt with the Fashion Stars for a Cause

Known within fundraising circles as the Raffle Czarina, Yvonne told the crowd “I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention the raffle.” She reported that raffle tickets for a Royal Raffle Dinner Party are available from any of the 2015 Fashion Stars (Jennifer Fleming, Jamie Fowler, Leah Frazier, Rebecca Hallam, Caroline Harrison, Dr. Naila Malik, Charmaine Marshall, Dawn Mellon, Jessi Moreau, Dawn Neufeld, Melissa Rountree and Cathy Williamson) or by contacting Yvonne. The drawing will take place on Thursday, May 21, with proceeds from the event and raffle going to the Suicide and Crisis Center of North Texas.

SOLD OUT: Cancer Blows

While the Trinity Trust River Rats and Pack Rates may have decided to postpone their sneak peek of Texas Horse Park, the Cancer Blows organizers are charging ahead with horns aplenty at the Meyerson on Wednesday night.

Cancer Blows*

Cancer Blows*

Just got word from Niki Anthony, who’s been working harder that a meteorologist, that

“We are officially sold out which is wonderful news!

“We do plan to hold the concert no matter the weather. All of the musicians have made it in to town and are ready to go no matter what.”

Sure, the weather may not be picture perfect, but if these world-renowned trumpet players can fly in from around all part to support Dallas Symphony Orchestra principle trumpet/Niki’s husband Ryan Anthony’s effort to vanquish multiple myeloma, locals can go a block or mile to blast cancer.

Co-chairs D’Andra Simmons Lock and her husband Jeremy Lock are being joined by Honorary Co-Chairs Diane and Hal Brierley to raise funds for Baylor Health Care System Foundation and Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation.

Since it’s indoors at the Meyerson, so let’s see if the musicians don’t blow the tiles off the ceiling.

* Graphic provided by Cancer Blows

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