Best Dressed 2022: Baton Rougeans go glam in support of the American Cancer Society

Photos by Jeannie Frey Rhodes

On the surface, all you see is the sparkle. Under a shower of confetti, 10 male and 10 female honorees strut the runway before a cheering crowd. Ballgowns and baubles shimmer in the spotlight. It’s a celebration that attendees and volunteer organizers look forward to all year.

But after the house lights go up, the real magic begins. That’s when the funds raised at the Baton Rouge Best Dressed Ball are transformed into the life-changing work of the American Cancer Society. And these donations are no drop in the bucket: the 2021 Best Dressed Ball raised $1,489,100 toward local and national cancer efforts. In addition to supporting the organization’s overall mission, Best Dressed Ball funds were directed to both the Patrick F. Taylor Hope Lodge in New Orleans, which gives patients a free place to stay while undergoing treatment, and ACS’s Access to Care program, which assists patients with lodging and transportation during treatment. The Best Dressed Ball consistently ranks as one of Baton Rouge’s biggest local fundraising events and one of the top ACS galas nationwide. What a way to shine!

This year’s ball, which marks the 55th anniversary of the first such event in the Capital City, will take place August 13 at the Raising Cane’s River Center. Below, meet the 20 honorees who are making this moment not about putting themselves in the spotlight but about shining the spotlight on this important cause.


Robyn is wearing a Greta Constantine dress from Chatta Box.

Your style in five words or less: Timeless, feminine, sometimes unexpected

Fashion inspiration: My grandmother, Norma. She owned a shoe store so she always had the best shoes and purses. 

Daily uniform: Mostly scrubs, especially since the fourth baby was born

Most splurge-worthy item: Any good staple that will survive the years and trends: classic jewelry, a good pair of black or white pants, a classic white top, a timeless handbag

Worst fashion memory: The super low-rise “Britney and Christina Aguilera” jeans of the early 2000s that I fear will come back soon.

If no one were looking, I’d wear: My EVA Birkenstocks everywhere. They were my quarantine shoes.

Signature fragrance: Jour d’Hermes. It’s light and feminine.

Favorite footwear: I am loving that sneakers are in style now even with dresses and skirts. 

Best fashion advice you’ve ever received: Dress for your body type. Highlight the areas you are proud of, and wear your clothes with confidence.


Otha is wearing a custom suit from Brown & Brown Custom Clothiers.

Your style in five words or less: New age classy

Fashion inspiration: Virgil Abloh

Daily uniform: Suit and tie

Go-to pair of denim: True Religion

Worst fashion memory: I wore an Abercrombie & Fitch T-shirt, cargo shorts and tennis shoes to a casual-dress cotillion event in middle school. The memory still haunts me to this day.

If no one were looking, I’d wear: My Paisley & Gray sweatsuit with Orvis hiking socks

Signature cologne: Yves Saint Laurent Y Eau de Parfum, Valentino Born in Roma Yellow Dream, and Brooks Brothers White

Favorite footwear: Cole Haan shoes

Best fashion advice you’ve received: Shoes are your secret weapon.


Rachel is wearing a LoveShackFancy gown.

Your style in five words or less: Trendy, chic, business casual

Favorite designer: Zhivago when it comes to dresses and jumpsuits. Gotta have those shoulder pads.

Weekend ensemble: Heels always, plus jeans and a dressy top 

Go-to pair of denim: Agolde until I discovered Boyish

Wouldn’t be caught dead in: I can’t really say. When a new trend sets, I’m always open to try it.

Signature fragrance: Victoria’s Secret Romance

Must-have product: Kevin Murphy Anti Gravity Spray for volume

Favorite footwear: Cute pair of tennis shoes

Best fashion advice you’ve received: Be you and dress to what you feel and look best in. 


Suzanne is wearing an Adam Lippes Collective jumpsuit.

Your style in five words or less: Casual

Fashion inspiration: Jennifer Lopez

Favorite designer: Rachel Zoe

Daily uniform: Tennis or workout clothes

Go-to pair of denim: Just Black

Prized possession: Cross pendant necklace from Jerusalem

Wouldn’t be caught dead in: Houndstooth! #GeauxTigers

Signature fragrance: Coco Chanel

Best fashion advice you’ve received: Embrace what makes you unique.


Steven is wearing a Perry Ellis sport coat, Citizen jeans, & Cole Haan shoes.

Your style in five words or less: Comfortable, clean, straightforward

Fashion inspiration: My close group of friends. They are way more fashionable than I am!

Daily uniform: Polo shirt with denim or slacks

Prized possession: Rolex watch

Most splurge-worthy item: Custom suit

Piece I skimp on: Neckties

Wouldn’t be caught dead in: Skinny jeans—they are not made for me.

Favorite footwear: Cole Haan

Best fashion advice you’ve received: You can tell a lot about a person by their shoes.


Kyle is wearing a Suitsupply sport coat and J.Hilburn shirt.

Your style in five words or less: James Bond meets Mr. Rogers

Daily uniform: Chinos, Clark’s boots and a cardigan

Prized possession: A friendship bracelet my 8-year-old gave me

Piece I will skimp on: I’ll skimp on anything—I’m all about some T.J. Maxx.

Wouldn’t be caught dead in: I don’t wear much black. Reminds me of being a waiter in college.

Worst fashion memory: Let’s just say I was a huge M.C. Hammer fan.

Signature cologne: Sauvage by Dior, at the moment

Favorite footwear: Allen Edmonds loafers

Best fashion advice you’ve received: “Don’t be too matchy matchy.” —Melinda Petersen (my mom)


True is wearing a Zimmermann skirt and blouse.

Your style in five words or less: Elegant, colorful and a touch of sparkle

Fashion inspiration: My mother, Pam Picou

Favorite designer: ALC, Zimmermann, Alexis, and Alice & Olivia

Daily uniform: FIGS scrubs and Golden Goose sneakers

Go-to pair of denim: DL1961

Prized possession: My grandmother’s statement ring

Worst fashion memory: Ribbon belts, cotton tiered skirts and layered tank tops! A true 2000s look.

Favorite footwear: Manolo Blahnik pumps

Best fashion advice you’ve received: It is better to be overdressed than underdressed.


John is wearing a custom suit by F&K.

Your style in five words or less: Classic with a bohemian touch

Fashion inspiration: Mick Jagger

Favorite designer: Ralph Lauren

Daily uniform: Skinny pants, open collar

Go-to pair of denim: An old pair of Luckys

Prized possession: My late grandfather’s 1932 high school ring

Wouldn’t be caught dead in: Black mesh tank top

Worst fashion memory: “Damn Seagulls” T-shirts and Jams

Best fashion advice you’ve received: A $10 piece that fits properly will look better than a $1,000 piece that doesn’t.


Your style in five words or less: Stylish, classy, vibrant, on-trend, boho

Favorite designer: Michael Costello and Christian Siriano

Daily uniform: Layers and pieces pulled together with statement earrings and bracelets

Prized possession: Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders rookie pinky ring. It took a lot of work to earn it!

Worst fashion memory: The trend when black opaque stockings were worn under denim skirts with black Mary Jane shoes.

Must-have product: Fitted, basic white tee or tank

Favorite footwear: Steve Madden, On Cloud, Dolce Vita

Best fashion advice you’ve received: The right accessories can make or break any look.


Gavin is wearing a Michael Kors shirt, Revtown jeans, & Cole Haan shoes.

Your style in five words or less: Very comfortable

Fashion inspiration: Instagram ads

Favorite designer: Vuori or Peter Millar

Daily uniform: Quarter zip, golf shirt, Peter Millar pants and comfortable shoes

Wouldn’t be caught dead in: A tie

Worst fashion memory: Wearing pleated pants for way too long

If no one were looking, I’d wear: Exactly what I’m wearing now

Favorite footwear: Cole Hahn Zero Grands, Saucony tennis shoes, Birkenstocks


Kris is wearing a Frank Lyman Montreal jacket and pants from Raffaele Furs & Boutique.

Your style in five words or less: Simple. Sharp. Chic.

Favorite designer: Teri Jon by Rickie Freeman

Daily uniform: Workout attire

Weekend ensemble: Sassy and fun

Go-to pair of denim: Ooh La La Jeans

Prized possession: Grandmother’s white pearls

Most spluge-worthy item: Mardi Gras gowns

Wouldn’t be caught dead in: Torn jeans

Favorite footwear: Orange cowboy boots

Best fashion advice you’ve received: Develop a signature style.


Quanah is wearing Camilla Franks resortwear.

Your style in five words or less: Sexy bohemian

Fashion inspiration: Jennifer Lopez and Sofía Vergara

Go-to pair of denim: Veronica Beard

Prized possession: Irish linen and lace christening gown

Most splurge-worthy item: Furs

Wouldn’t be caught dead in: Bermuda shorts

If no one were looking, I’d wear: No bra

Handbag of choice: Chanel

Signature fragrance: Thierry Mugler Angel

Best fashion advice you’ve received: Mix modest pieces with a dash of sexy.


Randy is wearing a Paul Betenly suit from Perlis and an heirloom Rolex.

Your style in five words or less: Simple and classic

Favorite designer: I rely on Perlis to keep me straight.

Daily uniform: Grey or blue suit with a light, patterned shirt

Weekend ensemble: Khaki pants with a knit polo

Piece I will skimp on: Trendy socks

Wouldn’t be caught dead in: Leggings

Worst fashion memory: What I wore in the ’70s

If no one were looking, I’d wear: Gym shorts and a T-shirt

Best fashion advice you’ve received: Keep it simple and classic.


Sanjay is wearing an Armani blazer, ORO jeans, and Jordan 1 high-tops.

Your style in five words or less: Personal, kempt, composed

Fashion inspiration: John Legend

Daily uniform: Personality-specific tie, skinny dress pants and a white coat, or scrubs with a fresh pair of J’s

Go-to pair of denim: Black Express skinny jeans. They’re so comfortable. For during the day, a pair of Respect blue jeans.

Piece I will skimp on: A suit. Styles change, as does your size, and I think how one wears the suit far trumps how expensive the suit was.

I can’t get enough of: Nikes. I have way too many kicks but your feet never change!

Best fashion advice you’ve received: Dress to your worth.


Kristin is wearing a Jovani gown from Chatta Box.

Your style in five words or less: Timeless, simple elegance with a vintage flair

Fashion inspiration: Kelly Wearstler

Favorite designers: Diane von Furstenberg and Ulla Johnson

Weekend ensemble: Yoga pants with a stylish shirt or jacket and high-tops

Prized possession: Antique pendant from Barker’s with filigree, diamonds and emeralds—a Christmas gift from my husband Stephen

Most splurge-worthy item: Stylish sneakers

I can’t get enough of: Lululemon leggings

Worst fashion memory: Floppy velvet hat and leggings with lace ankles in the ’90s

If no one were looking, I’d wear: My super-soft tie-dyed jogger set

Favorite footwear: Anine Bing studded boots from Edit by LBP

Best fashion advice you’ve received: Trust your inner sense of style, and wear colors that elevate your mood.


Matt is wearing a custom suit by Rocky Chugani, and Cole Haan shoes.

Your style in five words or less: Conservative eye candy

Go-to pair of denim: Ralph Lauren Polo jeans

Prized possession: Father’s college graduation ring

Piece I will skimp on: No skimping (YOLO)

Wouldn’t be caught dead in: Skinny jeans

Worst fashion memory: Wearing knockoff Z-Cavaricci pants in 9th grade; mine were named Z-Baldenisi!

Must-have product: Cufflinks

Favorite footwear: Nike Air Max 270

Best fashion advice you’ve received: Be yourself and don’t let anyone dictate what you wear.


Charlene is wearing a Bronx and Banco dress.

Your style in five words or less: Simple and feminine—and in jewel tones

Fashion inspiration: BeBe Facundus

Weekend ensemble: Comfortable attire for the grandkids’ sports activities

Prized possession: My mother’s gold heart locket

Most spluge-worthy item: Manolo Blahniks

Worst fashion memory: Hip-hugging, bell-bottom pants

If no one were looking, I’d wear: A bikini

Signature fragrance: Estée Lauder Beautiful Belle

Best fashion advice you’ve received: Shoulders back. Chin up. Stand up straight.


Michael is wearing a J.Hilburn sport coat, AG jeans, and Martin Dingman shoes.

Your style in five words or less: Conservative but unique

Weekend ensemble: Vuori shorts and a Lululemon shirt

Go-to pair of denim: AG Jeans

Most splurge-worthy item: A new ski outfit. I have to look the part!

Wouldn’t be caught dead in: A turtleneck sweater

Worst fashion memory: I once wore pink socks to match my pink shirt with tight, rolled jeans. I hate that picture!

Must-have product: A good vest—or 10 of them

Favorite footwear: Jordan lows or Frye cowboy boots

Best fashion advice you’ve received: If it don’t fit tight, it don’t fit right.


Katie is wearing a Jovani Couture gown from The Dress Diaries.

Your style in five words or less: Classy with sassy curves

Fashion inspiration: Blake Lively and “Karen Walker”

Weekend ensemble: Jackie during the day and Marilyn come dusk!

Prized possession: 20th-anniversary diamond bracelet

Most spluge-worthy item: Anything at Anton’s

I can’t get enough of: IT under-eye concealer because … life!

Worst fashion memory: High-rise, pleated, acid-washed jeans

Best fashion advice you’ve received: “Trendy is the last stage before tacky.” —Karl Lagerfeld


Jason is wearing a custom coat and shirt from Martinez Custom Clothier, J.Hilburn jeans, and custom Lucchese boots.

Your style in five words or less: Simple, clean, and professional with a modern flair every now and then

Prized possession: My two college football national championship rings

Most splurge-worthy item: Custom suits and boots

Wouldn’t be caught dead in: Three-stripe tube socks with sandals

Worst fashion memory: Girbaud jeans rolled at the ankles

If no one were looking, I’d wear: Knickerbockers on the golf course or full-blown biker gear while riding a Harley

Must-have product: Tea tree shampoo

Favorite watch: My Garmin watch. It’s my James Bond piece. It tells me the time, receives text messages, gives me distances on the golf course, and even lets me know that my heart is still beating.