Monday, June 8, 2009

June 8, 2009 - The DSVC Banquet

This past weekend was pretty big for Paul. We attended the Dallas Society of Visual Communications annual banquet. Through the years, Paul has been very active with the group - which is the largest, independent visual communications organization in the country - even serving on the Board for several years and as president in 2002. The banquet serves as an award show to recognize exceptional work from Dallas area graphic designers, illustrators, and photographers for the year. As it turned out, two pieces that Paul worked on at MasonBaronet as creative director in 2008 prior to the accident were accepted into the show so that is one reason we decided to attend. The other is that the DSVC has been a huge source of support for us since Paul's accident and many of the members, who he has become friends with over the years, had not seen him since before the accident or early on at the hospital. I was very nervous about attending the show but I know that Paul has come so far this year and continues to improve every day. I also knew that the people that would see him at the show will see him again down the road and, as he continues to recover, will appreciate even more how well he is doing and how hard he is fighting.

Of course, our hope was that Paul would be able to walk into the show but, since he is not quite there yet, we took the wheelchair. We rode over with some friends, Pete and Micki Lacker, and got their early to look at all of the artwork that was displayed before taking a seat at our table with the group from MasonBaronet. From that point on, person after person stopped by the table to see Paul. I don't know why I was even worried! Everyone was so nice, so encouraging, and so genuinely excited to see him. By the time the show started, I think we were both extremely happy that we were there.

Then, Jennifer Brehm, the current president, began the show off by acknowledging that Paul was there, explaining to the 400 or so in attendance what had happened to him, said how happy they were to see him, and how far he has come this year. Suddenly, there was a spotlight on Paul and he was receiving a standing ovation from the crowd! It was one of the most amazing things that I have ever experienced so I can't imagine how Paul felt. If I remember correctly, he looked a little shocked but I know Paul well enough to know that he would never admit it, but he loves being in the spotlight , although I don't know about an actual spotlight. He did spell out for me later that he was overwhelmed. It was just so touching. Since Paul's accident, it has seemed like our life has been so far away from what it was before, I honestly never thought we would again be attending a DSVC banquet, which incidentally was a big night out for us each spring. But, while we were there, it felt right and I realized that our pre-accident life and post-accident life are slowly beginning to come back together. And, that designing will always be a part of who Paul is so no matter what. He still has the passion and the determination and, even after receiving a standing ovation, still expressed regret that he didn't win an award this year so I know he still has the drive and competitiveness.

I just want to thank the DSVC Board, especially Jennifer Brehm, Samantha Reitmayer, Tom Dennis, and Brandi Lefleur for going out of their way to make attending easy for us, for making us feel so welcome, and for providing an exceptional experience. It was a special night for both of us and I know that, for Paul, it was like a pep rally that gave him a boost to keep working. I included this photo of us at the banquet and have more that I will try to post soon. Unfortunately, I don't have one of Paul during the ovation. I had a camera but was overcome by emotion and wasn't thinking clearly enough to pick it up and take a picture.

Thank you, everyone, again for you support.



Rob W. said...

We debated about the spotlight a little bit, thinking it may be too much for Paul, but in the end we thought it was a good idea. It was a magical moment. We were jumping up and down (with Sam R.) at the a/v table!

Paul, it was so good to see you again! You're looking fine, brother.

I have a video to send you. Last year, the friday before your accident, you asked me to prepare a video of the award your group won at the dsvc show, and I ripped it that day and stored it on my .mac account.

You never replied to my e-mail letting you know it was ready (and then I heard about your accident).

Send me an e-mail address and I'll send you the link for downloading.

Rob Walker (

Rrramone said...

Wow. Paul, I'm so proud of you, and happy for you and Patty. What a well deserved honor for a man who has inspired so many. Patty, thanks for that wonderful post.

Much love to both of you.

Sarah said...

So very happy for you all. Thank you Patty, for posting.

Take care,
Sarah and John Pucci

Tammy said...

What a wonderful post, Patty. I think getting Paul out and about is a positive force in his recovery. He's most likely already planning for next year! You've done a marvelous job this past year to support Paul. What an inspiration you are to all of us who follow you in this journey.

My best,

Anonymous said...

Paul, it sounds like last weekend was a great night! The awards banquet sounds like such a good time and I am really glad you guys decided to go. I am sure it was wonderful to see old friends and familiar faces.

The standing ovation would have been a sight to see. I think it's terrific.

Keep up the hard work and we are looking forward to seeing you soon....

with love, The Hatfields

Amy, one of the sister-in-laws said...

I am so glad that you guys went! Theresa told us the story the next day and me, mom and her were all in tears!! You are an incredible couple with true love and I am so proud to be your family. I love you ~ Amy

Anonymous said...

A man's growth is seen in the successive choirs of his friends.
Ralph Waldo Emerson

Brandon DeLoach said...

The last time I saw Paul before the accident, was at the DSVC show a year ago. He pulled me aside and gave me some great encouragement on my career. I was happy to be able to return the favor last Saturday. Seeing him back in the middle of DSVC where he belongs made me so happy. I couldn't stop smiling when I saw him.

I love you Paul.

Thanks so much for continuing to post Patty. I really enjoy reading up on you guys.

annie said...

that's an awfully powerful post pattyjerde.

very cool.

Anonymous said...

Wow! What an amazing evening. Wish I could've been there to honor one of the most outstanding individuals I know.


Anonymous said...

Patty, thanks so much for that great post. I didn’t know if you and Paul were going to make to the show and seeing him and his big smile from across the room was by far the highlight of my night.

For so many of us, the show a year ago was the last time we saw Paul before the accident. Most of us can’t begin to imagine the year you two have had, but it is amazing how far he has come.

It was so great having Paul back amongst the group. The world felt like a little better place.


Anonymous said...

this is so great! thx patty for sharing


Anonymous said...

Hi Paul and Patty! I was so excited to read the last post. I wish that I could have been there to take part in all the excitement. I know what a wonderful evening the DSVC show can be - and am thrilled that you all were able to make it. Hope that we can all be there next year - so that I can give you an overdue hug. Miss you Paul, and am thinking about you often.
Ann L. Hynecek

Kristine said...

What a happy post! I am so glad yall went and I know that it was healing in so many ways--ways in which you will never fully know.

Love to you both!

Kelly Lindner said...

Dear Patty,
Thank you for sharing that. I could feel the energy and the love that the room had for Paul that night. Your family has been top of mind this week for me. I met Paul officially and visited with him June 10th and we set up a coffee date on June 17th. I was so looking forward to it and then so crushed to get an email from Holly. It's been a tough year for you and I cannot be happier that you two are still together in this life. If you feel ever feel down, remember the energy of that night and know that anything is possible. Blessings to all, Kelly

Anonymous said...

Hi Paul & Patty.

I'm thinking about both of you this weekend. It's been a really long year for you. June 14th isn't a particularly great date for me either. My mother died on June 14, 1994...15 years ago. But I try to keep up with this blog, and am really pleased and happy to see that you are making such progress! And it was great that you two were able to attend the DSVC banquet. I can see that it meant a lot, both to you, and to your colleagues in the design industry, and I'm happy about the warm reception you received. And don't worry about not getting an award this time Paul. I'll bet you will be getting them again within a year or two! Keep up the good work, and thanks again Patty for maintaining this site and keeping us posted on Paul's progress. You both are very inspirational and are appreciated and admired by many. My very best wishes to you both.

Wayne Stevens

Anonymous said...

Patty and Paul....

WOW. What a year it has been. Lots of trials and tribulations....but lots of progress, love and support.

It's amazing to go back and read what was first posted on the day of the accident. Paul, you have come so far and I know the best is yet to come!

We now get to celebrate YOUR birthday soon and this is a birthday that I have been looking forward to for months.

Patty and I will make it extra special for you. Just like you deserve!

We love you....the Hatfields

Anonymous said...

manistique michigan continues to follow the travels of one patty and paul jerde.....the recent post shares so well just why all of us love you so much...may there be many more dsvc gatherings with you both in lucky we are to have you in our, kathy

Jason said...

Paul & Patty,

It was great to see both of you at the show. I'm glad you got to see Lyndsey again and we could share our good news with you. It's too bad we didn't win this year, but once you get a Judge's Gold from Doyald Young, what else do you need?

I have lots of love for you guys, and I look forward to brainstorming again.


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