Like David Levy, Shellie's a CMA friend. She started attending the annual conferences around the same time I did, but I first bumped into her in New Orleans in 2001, where she joined my regular group for a couple of terrific meals. She brought her husband Mark and son Alec to Orlando in 2002, so we didn't spend as much time together as we had in NOLa, but David and I joined the Michaels for lunch at the hotel, and Shellie and I sat poolside for a lengthy chat. She later encouraged me to apply for a journalism opening at her school in Nashville, and the search committee invited me down for an interview at my own expense, to which I said thanks but no thanks. The person they ultimately hired took over advising their college newspaper, so Shellie stopped going to CMA the 2004 conference was in Tennessee, though, so we had a chance to get together then. By 2006, when I was looking to leave Cleveland, her school was again looking for a speech professor and by this time was paying for interview travel. I applied, was selected for an interview, and spent another enjoyable Nashville evening with Shellie and Mark. I didn't get the job, but have stayed in touch with the Michaels since ... and hopefully will be seeing them this summer, when they pass through Maryland on their way home from some vacation time with Mark's folks up in Massachusetts.
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