• PJ Saffran

Krewe Members 2020-2021

Updated: Feb 10




Sarah Bembinster

I was born and raised in DeLand, FL. I’m the youngest of 4 children and grew up in a fun-loving, soccer-playing family. I graduated from Auburn University in 2016 with a degree in Apparel Merchandising. I married my high school sweetheart this past November and we bought our first home in DeLand. We recently rescued a sweet grey Weimaraner, named Winnie, who has stolen our hearts. I currently work as a Communications Specialist within the Admissions Department at Stetson University. I am also working towards my Masters of Business Administration from Stetson. I like to spend my free time hanging out with friends and family and doing anything that involves being outdoors.

Mimi Carter

I am Mimi Carter and I am rejoining the Krewe of Amalee this year. I am a teacher at Easter Seals. While in the Krewe, I formerly served as Chairman of Food & Beverage, Debutante, Public Relations, among others. I utilize my skills to bring forth fun and creative ideas for entertaining. I enjoy social gatherings and spending time with my three grandchildren. I love gardening, photography, traveling, and decorating for every holiday. I have lived in DeLand for over 25 years with my husband Jim and our four children. We reside on Lake Charles.


Gabby Huddleston

My name is Gabby Huddleston and I am the daughter of Krewe member, Aimée Duke Huddleston and Michael Huddleston. I was born and raised right here in DeLand and graduated from DeLand High School in 2015. After graduating, I lived in Tallahassee and Monticello, Fl., where I worked for Farmers Merchant Bank. I came back to Deland in 2019 to work for my father at Huddleston & Associates, P.A. as well as The Elusive Grape and Byte Bistro. While living in DeLand, I coached DeLand Pop Warner Cheer and was also an Assistant Cheer Coach at DeLand High School. I am the President of Deland Dishes Back which is a charitable organization founded in 2019 to support our community and to provide sit down meals and offer comfort and peace in a time of need.

I had the honor of serving as a Krewe of Amalee royal page to Queen Brynda Greer in 2009 and as a Krewe of Amalee debutante in 2016. I danced and was part of the entertainment in both Wicked and We Will Rock You Krewe years. My entire family helped my mother behind the scenes in 2015 when she was Chairman of From London with Love!

October 2020 brought about a move back to Monticello and an incredible new job as Marketing Director and Sales Rep for CopyFax in Tallahassee. We are a family owned and operated local business that specializes in dealing and servicing office equipment in north Florida. I enjoy traveling, cooking, fishing, boating and hanging out on my farm with my Goldendoodle, Snook.

I love my hometown of DeLand and look forward to finally being an official member of the Krewe of Amalee and getting to know even more of you incredible ladies!

Carol Koehler

I was born and raised in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio until 1968 when I married and moved to California. That was another life-time ago. Twenty-three years ago, I married an old friend, Gary Koehler, and moved from California to Gainesville, Florida. Gary is now a retired UF professor and we currently live in DeBary. We have a very large blended family consisting of 7 children and 21 grandchildren, all of whom live out-of-state. Fortunately, living in Florida, we are visited by them often.

I was a stay-at-home mom while my children were young and that explains my crafting abilities. I did work for sixteen years as a Purchasing Agent and Project Manager for two different interior design businesses, Ethan Allen Furniture and Interior Design Resources.

My hobbies include jewelry making, greeting card making, scrapbooking, and making miniature room boxes. Other than crafting, I also enjoy fishing, traveling and spending time with family and friends.

I learned about the Krewe from a group of friends that get together once a week (before the pandemic) at the “Grape”. I gave a class on jewelry making that four of the ladies attended. They loved the necklaces that they each made. After that they started talking to me about the Krewe. Last February we were invited to the Krewe’s Mardi Gras Ball. It was so fabulous. So four of my friends recommended and sponsored me for the Krewe and I am so excited that I was accepted.

Diane Lewis

I am new Krewe member Diane Lewis. I grew up in a small town in Iowa but after graduating from the University of Iowa life expanded to the Washington DC area and Wisconsin. I was a part time teacher and Festival of Trees organizer. I have lived in Florida the past five years. My husband, John Cascio, and I like to travel and golf together. In addition I enjoy swimming and cooking. We each have one son, with John’s son and wife and two young grandsons right down the street from us. We loved the Krewe Ball last year and look forward to a year of new friends and new experiences.

Mallory McDonald

My name is Mallory McDonald. I am a DeLand born and raised gal, I have lived in our sweet little town for the majority of my life. I now reside back in DeLand after briefly relocating to Atlanta, Georgia for a post-grad change of pace and start to my career. My fiancé Giovanni and I are getting married in the fall of 2021 and look forward to starting a family some day, but for now it is just the two us (until I convince him to get a furry friend). I graduated from Stetson University with my bachelors in business. I am an accountant at Dickinson & McDonald, P.A, following in the footsteps of my mom, Becky McDonald. I love being a part of this community and try to stay as involved as I can. I sit on the Fall Festival of The Arts DeLand Executive Board as 1st Vice President, a member of the WV Police Athletic League Board of Directors, assistant coach/treasurer to the DHS cheer squad, and an inaugural female member of the DeLand Quarterback Club. I enjoy spending time in town but also love to travel and explore what the world has to offer. I look forward to being a part of the Krewe!

Lisa Peterson

My name is Lisa S Peterson. I was born in DeLand, raised in DeLand, currently reside in Deland. I am married to Lamar “Pete”, love of my life, we have two children, Michael and Emily. Emily graduates in July from UCF. I have two precious granddaughters Michaella and Nixon.

Jeanne Peterson is my sister-in-law, our husbands, Ernie and Lamar, are brothers. I attended Florida School of Banking University of Florida. I am an SBA certified Lender.

I have worked over thirty years in the Banking Industry. I am a Private Banker for Fifth Third Bank and am a member of our Wealth and Asset Management Team. I work with high net worth clients and families to help them achieve their financial goals. I am involved in my local community as a Board member of Healthy Start in Daytona, Financial Board Member for the Good Samaritan Clinic and Board Member of the Fall Festival of the Arts.

I always tell my clients and people I meet when they ask me where I am from.. I tell them born and raised in DeLand, still live in Deland, why go anywhere else? DeLand is wonderful! I am passionate about my family, my faith, my friends, my job and my community. I love to cook, read, and spend time with family and friends.

Bee Powell

I am Bee Powell, an Architect by trade and have lived and worked the first 33 years of my life in Germany, US and Australia. I moved to DeLand in 2004 and started a family with my husband Terry. We remodeled our freshly acquired house in the historic district and had a boy and a girl. In 2012, after several entrepreneurial excursions, I became a Realtor and with my professional background hit the ground running. I opened up Bee Realty Corp in 2012 and have taken the West Volusia Real Estate Industry by storm ever since. I retired from competitive Skydiving on the German National Team in 2006 and now enjoy being a competitive Equestrian in the Jumper division on my German Warmblood Laila. I serve as a Board member in the Rotary Club of Downtown Deland, Hope Reins, Founding Member of the West Volusia Gang of Givers and hold the Chair of the Business Retention and Economic Development of the Chamber of Commerce.

Janie Price

My name is Janie Price. I was born in Franklin, Tn, raised in Spring Hill, TN and currently reside in Deland, FL. I am married to Aaron Price for almost 14 years and we have a 10 year old daughter, Clara. Clara is a competitive Cheerleader at St. Barnabas. We have a 2 year old German Shorthair Pointer, Abe.

Anita Hill is my good friend and neighbor and introduced me to the Krewe. I am so excited to be able to be more involved with the community and very thankful for her.

I attended Middle Tennessee State University and received a Bachelors in Business Administration with a major in Accounting. I worked for the State of Tennessee Treasury Department as an accountant and was an HR Manager for Costco while still in Tennessee. Since moving to Florida 8 years ago, my husband and I have started our own Home Inspection company, Super Inspection Pros. I use my accounting skills daily! I am a Founding member and current membership committee member of the DeLand BNI chapter, Power House.

I absolutely LOVE living in DeLand, FL and am so proud to call it home! I love our downtown and yet being close enough to visit the beach. I love spending time on our lake with family and friends, trying craft beers, and traveling to National Parks.

Jessica Puckett

My name is Jessica Puckett.

I am a fourth generation DeLandite and could not love our sweet little town more!

My husband, Marshall Puckett, and I met while in sixth grade at DeLand Middle School. After graduating from DeLand High in 2001, I went on to earn my bachelors at University of North Florida in Jacksonville, where I remained for several years.

After returning to DeLand in 2010, I ran into Marshall again and we were married in 2012 in Montego Bay. We have two beautiful babies, Rew (7) and Palmer (4), who keep us very busy. Last Christmas, my wish came true as we welcomed a baby girl to the family. Lady, our puppy, has completed our family unit! We enjoy spending time with family and friends, trips to the mountains and stay-cations at the beach. We belong to LifePoint Community Church.

I am the Human Resources Director at Cornerstone Fabrication, a metal manufacturer in DeBary. It is truly rewarding, and I am so thankful to work for a company so kind and compassionate. After serving the Junior Service League of DeLand for five years, I am excited for this transition into the Krewe and all the fun times ahead.

I was introduced to Krewe by my sister, Anita Hill, as well as several friends. I am looking forward to building even stronger bonds in the community and making new friendships through Krewe.

Michelle Sharpe

My name is Michelle Sharpe and I was born and raised in Deland and currently reside in Longwood, FL.  My mother Dawn Sharpe is a current Krewe Member. I attended college at the University of Central Florida and majored in Event Management. Over the past six years, I have worked on Marketing for AdventHealth in Orlando and just recently transitioned to oversee the leadership and physician conferences. If I’m not at work, you can find me with my friends or at the beach with family and my favorite nephews or spending time with my animals. 

Emilie Shaw

My name is Emilie Costar Shaw.

I was born and raised in Miami, FL and married my high school sweetheart while we were both students at Stetson University.  After undergraduate school, graduate school and then Law school we settled down in Fort Lauderdale where we raised our four children.  Our two daughters, Mimi Shaw Carter and Jennifer Shaw Wilder now live in Deland.

I was a stay at home Mom with 4 children in 6 years.  I volunteered in many activities including Jr. League of Fort Lauderdale, Board of Directors of Stranahan House and Bonnet House.

My husband became involved in politics and was elected Mayor of Fort Lauderdale and then to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1980.  I quickly devoted most of my time to being a political wife for some 35 years.  We lived in Washington for 26 years while he served in the “House” and I became involved with many activities mostly centered around politics including serving as President of Republican Congressional Spouses, Board of Directors of the Congressional Club(membership made up of spouses of the House, the Senate, the Cabinet and the Supreme Court), President of the Republican Women’s Federal Forum, Chairman of the First Ladies Luncheon and Sr. Vice President of Florida House.

After I lost my husband in 2013, I moved to DeLand to be closer to our daughters and one of our sons in Orlando.

Although I have done a great deal of volunteer work in my life, I decided to join Krewe to become more involved in the community.  I have truly enjoyed my friendships with Carolyn Anderson and Kristi Tyrell and I look forward to developing new friendships in the coming years.

Sarah Sowell

My name is Sarah Sowell.

I was born in Kansas City, MO, raised in DeLand, FL, spent some additional time in Kansas City, and currently reside in DeLand (again).

My husband, Greg, is a native of South Carolina. The two of us met in Kansas City and bonded over our love of the South and sporting events. We were married in 2009 at Kauffman Stadium, the home stadium of the Kansas City Royals baseball team. We were thrilled to have been able to recently relocate to the DeLand area with our two children, Rhett (6) and Stella (3). We enjoy spending time at the beach, with our family and friends, and taking frequent trips to Disney.

I am a graduate of DeLand High School, class of 2001. I earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration from Flagler College in 2006.

I work as a Construction Project Manager for Volusia County Schools. It is extremely rewarding to manage improvements that will ultimately benefit the youth in our community.

I was introduced to Krewe by my cousins, Avery and Heather LeFils, as well as several friends. I am looking forward to reconnecting to old friends and making new friendships through Krewe.

Molly Thompson

I was born and raised in Kingston Jamaica with four siblings. I migrated to California in 1986 and relocated to Florida in 1992, where I met and wedded my husband, Michael Thompson. We have three wonderful children, Kyle 25, Kory 24, and Keira 12. We will celebrate our 23rd anniversary on Sept 19th. We have lived in the Glenn Abbey Community in Debary for 16 years, and find that we appreciate the overall landscape of our community.

I was introduced to the Krewe family by Carolyn Anderson, whom I worked with for seven years at Advent Health. I departed that position in search of a new opportunity in December 2019. That could not have happened at better time, as we are all forced to make lifestyle adjustments amid the Covid situation. No regrets, as being home with my daughter brings me great joy, and assisting her with schooling albeit a pivotal undertaking, brings me fulfillment.

My educational background is quite diverse, as I hold a bachelor’s in science in Social Work (BSW), a master’s in public administration (MPA), and most recently my Law Degree in Health Law and Policy (MAHLP). As I seek professional growth with my career, I find that I must keep myself current and skilled, which lead me to enroll in a PhD. Program in Health Service. My aspiration is to become Health Policy Analyst. My hobbies and activities include cooking and gardening. I enjoy meaningful relationships, and diversity of cultures.

Jennifer Shaw Wilder

I am Jennifer Shaw Wilder, a returning member to Krewe. I was born and raised in South Florida. In Ft. Lauderdale, Greg, my husband of 30+ years and I were blessed with four beautiful children, 3 girls and a boy. After the birth of our 4th child (our surprise bonus baby at almost 41 years old), we realized how fast life was going by and decided that we needed to slow it down a bit. We didn’t feel like we could do that in Ft. Lauderdale so we left the big city and moved north to DeLand. In Ft. Lauderdale, we could measure our home’s property in feet, so in DeLand, we bought acreage. After having our realtor explain how to use and care for items foreign to us like a septic tank, a well and a water softener, we unexpectedly became country people and embraced country living. We hung a swing from a tree, bought a riding mower for Greg, got a dog, adopted a couple of cats and a goat, installed a zip line and built a tree house. While looking to slow down, we joke that we came to a screeching halt. While we dearly miss our Ft. Lauderdale friendships, our decision to move was the right one. The kids have thrived in DeLand, and we have been afforded the gift of spreading out and slowing down while we enjoy more time as a family.

In 2010, after being fortunate enough to be a stay at home Mom for 18 years, a wonderful opportunity presented itself, a position with the City of DeLand Parks and Recreation Department. I accepted this position as the “Director of the Sanborn Activity and Event Center and Special Events at Earl Brown Park”. I was given a very long title, with responsibilities that are very broad. I create and schedule activities for the community as well as oversee rentals of our beautiful facility for weddings, corporate meetings, galas and celebrations of all kinds. In addition, I also get to schedule and oversee festivals and concerts in Earl Brown Park. This has been a dream job for me in that I have not only learned a lot about our new home town but have also had the opportunity to use my creativity to help people and create fun things to do on a daily basis.

About 5 years ago, after the death of our father in 2013, our Mom moved up to DeLand

to be closer to me and my sister who also lives in DeLand and our brother who lives in Orlando with his family. Mimi, Mom and I are all three returning members to Krewe this year and look forward to a fun filled and busy year.



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