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Bates wins Florist award
Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Kathy Bates, a floral designer at Rebel Hill Florist, has been named the 2013 Designer of the Year First Runner-up by the Central Tennessee Professional Florist Association (CTPFA).  The award puts Bates among the top designers in the state of Tennessee. Rebel Hill Florist designers have won numerous awards with several Designer of the Year designations to their credit.

 “I am so proud of Kathy and this accomplishment,” said Anna Page, owner of Rebel Hill Florist. “Kathy is an extraordinary and talented designer and we are fortunate to have her and all of our award-winning designers on the Rebel Hill team.” 

Bates, who has 30 years of experience in the floral industry, joined Rebel Hill in 2008. Since that time, she has received considerable recognition and awards for her work. Back in March, she was part of the team from Schaffer Designs that won Best in Show at the prestigious Philadelphia Flower Show for their exhibit “Jack”.  The Philadelphia Flower Show is the premier flower show in the United States. 

Recently, Bates was awarded a scholarship from the Southern Chapter of American Institute of Floral Designers (AIFD) to attend the National AIFD Symposium in Las Vegas. She is also a past winner of the Charles Owen Memorial Scholarship from CTPFA and the Owen-Shackleford Grant for professional education awarded by the Tennessee State Florists’ Association (TSFA).    

Two men apprehended after robbery attempt
Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Two men were apprehended after a robbery attempt Thursday on Curd Road. 

Roderick Majors, 23, Lebanon and Mario Newsome, 24, Nashville were arrested after the attempted robbery around 8 p.m. Thursday. A nearby resident called 911 stating she had just heard a gunshot in the area, and Mt. Juliet Police officers responded. 

The suspects and victim had already fled, but the victim drove to Mt. Juliet Police Department headquarters to speak with officers. The victim was in the 700 block of Curd Road when two male suspects approached the victim outside and attempted to rob him. A third suspect, a 17-year-old waited in a nearby vehicle. A struggle ensued, and the suspect fired a shot from a handgun towards the victim, but he was not hit. 

After a more in-depth investigation, investigators identified the suspects, and two of the three are in custody. The 17-year-old had still not been apprehended as of Monday afternoon. Sergeant Tyler Chandler said that the incident is still under investigation, and they are not ruling out that this robbery attempt has a connection to the one of the landscaper two weeks ago. 

“Our investigators work so hard to ensure dangerous criminals are quickly apprehended,” stated Mt. Juliet Police Chief James Hambrick. “The offenders’ behavior was extremely dangerous, and our community will not tolerate it. We, as a department, are going to do everything we can to keep this activity out of our wonderful city.”

Two adults were arrested, booked into the Wilson County Jail, and charged with the following: 

Roderick Majors, 23, Lebanon, Criminal Attempt (Aggravated Robbery) TCA 39-13-402; Criminal Conspiracy TCA 39-12-103

Mario Newsome, 24, Nashville, Criminal Attempt (Aggravated Robbery) TCA 39-13-402, Criminal Conspiracy TCA 39-12-103.

Majors was also wanted by the Metro-Nashville Police Department for Failure to Appear, and he was wanted by the Wilson County Sheriff’s Department for Burglary.

Newsome was arrested in Lebanon’s public housing where he was banned from coming on property. He was charged for trespassing by Lebanon Police Department.

Wilson County Sheriff’s and Lebanon Police Department assisted in the suspects’ apprehension.

Anyone with any information on this crime is encouraged to call the Mt. Juliet Police Department at (615) 754-2550. Information can also be given anonymously by calling (615) 754-TIPS (8477) or via the Mt. Juliet Police Department website at

Tomlinson fills vacant school board seat
Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Sabrina Garrett

Special to The Chronicle

Larry Tomlinson was named Zone 5 Wilson County Board of Education member during the meeting of the Wilson County Commission on Monday night.

Tomlinson was nominated for the position along with Bennie Jennings, Shell Gardner, Steve Johnson and Bryan Keith Alexander. Each of the men was given a few minutes to share their reasons for pursuing the office at the podium. Commissioners voted Tomlinson into the office with a majority of 18 votes. Gardner received four votes and Alexander received two votes.

Tomlinson is a former county commissioner and said he was very interested in the board member position and the future of Wilson County Schools because his two daughters graduated from the Wilson County School System and his four grandchildren are currently being educated in the system. He also has a history as a former Board of Education member representing Zone 5 from 1998 to 2004.

“I will do everything I can to faithfully serve this school system,” he said before asking that county Mayor Randall Hutto administer the oath of office. “I would like to take the oath of office tonight so that I can hit the ground running in the morning.”

Tomlinson will replace former board member Lasater, who resigned from the position after being investigated for misconduct as a Wilson County Sheriff’s Deputy.

New Director of Schools Dr. Tim Setterlund took a few minutes at the meeting to deliver his first report. Setterlund said that he has experienced 10 days on the job and that every person he has met has “reaffirmed that this is a blessing to me.”

Setterlund said they are eagerly anticipating the arrival of Aug. 1, the first day of the 2013-2014 school year, as well as welcoming 200 new teachers to the Wilson County School System on July 23.

Sabrina Garrett is a staff writer for The Wilson Post. You can reach her at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

The Glade Church training chefs for food service jobs
Tuesday, July 16, 2013

A local church is building life skills, and preparing people who may not have had a chance for a career in the food service industry. 

The Glade Church has developed CHEFS, or Creating Help through Employment in Food Services, as a part of their Life Build Ministry. It is a 16-week program that uses the Culinary Institute of America’s teaching materials to prepare people for a career in food services. The whole program is free to the student, and several from the first two classes have already got employment. 

Gayle Safeeullah got laid off from her previous job in May of last year, and saw an ad for the program on Craigslist in June. 

“I have been into cooking for a long time,” said Safeeullah. “But those programs are really expensive. I didn’t have $17,000 to do that.”

Safeeullah went through the program which combines a classroom component, many, many hours in the kitchen, and also a life skills portion. In addition to the chef training portion of the program, CHEFS teaches their applicants how to do things like write a resume and how to do well on an interview. It worked for Safeeullah, who got a job at the Black Pearl in Black Jack Cove in Old Hickory, and has already been promoted to kitchen manager. 

The Glade Church’s Minister of Engagement and Hospitality Chris Cox, who spent many years a successful caterer in Nashville, thinks the program is important for several reasons. 

“This is God’s gift,” said Cox. 

He said in addition to the necessary skills for employment in the food industry, it gives people a positive experience in church, something he said The Glade Church tries to do. He said that church has a reputation of being judgmental, and that is not what this is about. 

“You’re welcome here, we have an open arms approach,” said Cox. 

The classes have also brought about a boom in The Glade Church’s Wednesday night dinners. What used to be attended by around 50 people, is now seeing around 300-350 people show up every Wednesday. People are getting restaurant quality food for $6 a person, and no more than $25 for an entire family. Cox said they are able to do this because regular restaurants usually charge three times what the actual food is worth to help cover things like paying the staff, bills for the restaurant, etc. So you can get what is essentially a $15 meal and up at a restaurant for just $6. The church handles the cost for just the food. Cox said that anyone is welcome, you don’t have to be a member of the church, or even stay for the service. 

“Some people go on to service at their own church, and that is perfectly fine,” said Cox. 

Cox said it has been a good way to bring the community together as well, even if they don’t go to the church. 

They have also cooked for 20-30 shut ins in the surrounding area. They also cooked for the teachers on Teacher Appreciation Day at Gladeville Elementary, and many of those teachers started showing up for the Wednesday night dinners after seeing the quality of food they were getting. 

The CHEFS program is about to go through its third cycle. After Cox placed the ad on Craigslist, he got over 100 applicants, 60 of which came in for interviews. Eleven went through the first cycle, and four graduated. Cox and Shawn Farrow, who volunteer teaches the program, said that many people realize that a food service career is not for them. 

“Cooking for 300 people is a whole different ball game,” said Farrow. 

In the future, the CHEFS program will continue to expand. Cox said that he hopes that they can cook for more people in the community, and maybe set up days to go to certain businesses or groups. He would also like to get a senior nutrition program going as a part of that so the students could learn to cook a proper meal for seniors who are on a certain diet. 

If you are interested in being a part of the CHEFS program, or want to help out in anyway, contact Cox at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or (615)444-9550. 

MJPD Twitter ranked Top 10 nationally
Tuesday, July 16, 2013

The Mt. Juliet Police Department’s Twitter account has more followers than most of the other police departments of its size in the United States. According to the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) Center for Social Media’s recently released top ten list for “Most Twitter Followers”, the Mt. Juliet Police Department ranked as No. 7 in a top 10 list of agencies with 26 to 49 sworn officers. Mt. Juliet Police is only one of two Tennessee agencies to be ranked for their Twitter presence. The other agency is Franklin Police Department.

Mt. Juliet Police began its social media presence in 2011. Utilizing Twitter and Facebook, the department has enhanced its communication with the public by providing another avenue to keep the public informed. The communication isn’t just one-way either. Followers are able to engage the department with questions, concerns, and praise through the social media sites.

“Our presence in social media has been very positive. I think all police department’s should have a social media presence.” stated Mt. Juliet Police Chief James Hambrick. “Everywhere I go, I am constantly getting comments and appreciation for our use of Twitter and Facebook. I’m pleased our department has so many followers and to make the IACP’s list.”

The social media accounts are monitored by the department’s Community Policing Division, which handles media and community relations for the agency. However, the social media presence is truly a department-wide effort. Many of the department’s employees contribute to different posts that are sent out on the sites. Twitter and Facebook is not monitored 24/7, so it is not a substitute for requesting police assistance. Currently, Mt. Juliet Police has 3,150 Twitter followers and 3,459 Facebook likes.

IACP’s List of U.S. Law Enforcement Agencies with the Most Twitter Followers:

Also on the social media front, The International Association of Chiefs of Police – Center for Social Media has selected at the Mt. Juliet Police Department as the featured agency for July 16-31.

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