Category Archives: Brevardian of the Week

Brevardian of the Week: Tad Fogel!

Spouse/children/pets: Sharyn Misenheimer Fogel (a Brevard native), four grown daughters, plus one step-daughter, and four grandchildren (ages six to thirteen)

How are you involved with the Friends of Ecusta Trail organization? I’m a member of the Board of the Friends of Ecusta Trail which is working to convert the currently unused rail line between Hendersonville & Brevard. There are currently 18 board members from the two counties of Henderson & Transylvania, with seven of us from Transylvania.

What is the likelihood that it will succeed and be made into a trail (Ecusta Trail)? We are very optimistic, yet still have much work to do. We have the support of both the national and state Rails to Trails Consortium and the challenges and issues we face here are no different from other locations. Even Abdington, Virginia (home of the well-known “Virginia Creeper Trail”) as well as Travelers Rest and the “Swamp Rabbit Trail” had many of the same issues we face here.

Tell us about your time working for WSQL years ago (when was that & what were your job duties?)
I came to Brevard in 1993 as Manager of the radio station when it changed from its original call letters of WPNF to WRAQ, the forerunner of WSQL. Don DeBiase was doing our mornings even back in those days! The company that owned the station was based out of Kentucky at the time and I stayed with them only about a year. After that, I joined WWNC Radio in Asheville prior to starting my promotional advertising business Fogel Advertising.


At that time, was WSQL housed in the same building as today?  The local station when I managed it was located on East Main Street across from what is now the Chamber of Commerce. The building the station was in is now owned by local attorney Don Barton.

What advice do you have for people who have just moved to Brevard and want to become involved in the community?  Brevard is a very easy town to get a “jump start” of being involved. For business people, the obvious way is to make yourself known at Chamber of Commerce events, like Business After Hours. Downtown businesses naturally should get involved with the Heart of Brevard, in addition to the Chamber. Offer to serve on committees. People like to do business with people they know (it certainly worked for me).  Others, not involved with business, can offer to volunteer at the many local non-profits who are always looking for assistance.

Hobby-wise, which do you love more: hiking or camping?  I would actually have to add bicycling as a favorite hobby and rate camping, bicycling and hiking in that order.

What are your favorite spots to hike and camp in the Brevard area?  Most of my camping is usually within a 3 to 4 hour drive from Brevard. One of my favorites is Cades Cove over in the Smoky Mountain National Park. I also like Devil’s Fork, the South Carolina State Park on Lake Jocasee, Roan Mountain in Tennessee as well as the Army Corps of Engineer’s campgrounds on Lake Hartwell. Davidson River and Cascade Lake are obvious favorites which offer great R&R close to home.

Since I’ve taken up cycling, my hiking has taken a back seat with my time, but I love to do the “Exercise Trail” at Davidson River as well as Brevard’s bike and walking trails.

What has been the best long range bike tour you have ever taken?  It’s really hard to say, but I’ll always remember my first time in year 2004 on Cycle North Carolina’s “Mountains to the Coast” ride from Sparta to Oriental. I’d be remiss if I didn’t say the year CNC started here in Brevard in 2012 was my overall favorite. I’ve done the annual across the state ride now 11 years in a row!

Are there any things on your bucket list you want to do? (or places to visit?)  I still need to travel to Europe. I’ve been to many of our Caribbean Islands and Hawaii, but not abroad.

Tad Fogel Hall of Fame etching

Tad Fogel – South Carolina Broadcasters Radio & Television Hall of Fame etching

What is something people would be surprised to learn about you?  I was inducted into the South Carolina Broadcasters’ Radio & Television Hall of Fame in 2010. It wasn’t for my “on-air” personality or my voice as some might think. It had to do with my community service and service to the broadcasting industry. I’m a past President of the South Carolina Broadcaster’s Association and did a lot of lobbying both in Columbia and Washington during the years I was active in the industry.
Ever had a brush with a celebrity?  Several former presidents, SC governors, entertainers and once got into a deep conversation with Dick Clark about music at a national broadcasters convention in Miami Beach.

Have you ever had a nickname (and how did you get it)?  “Tad” is my nickname which has stuck since the day I was born. My real name is Harry, as named for my paternal grandfather who died a year before I was born. My grandmother thought I looked like a “tadpole” when I was born. Funny thing, I used to get into fights as a youngster when people called me tadpole as I couldn’t handle it. Later in life, speaking with people from all over the country on the phone who didn’t know me, I’d usually say “no, it’s Tad like tadpole” to distinguish the difference between Ted, Todd or whatever they thought my name sounded like.

Where did you grow up?  Georgetown, South Carolina which is on the coast north of Charleston and just below Myrtle Beach.

Do you have any knowledge of the origins of your family name?  I’m pretty sure is German and over time was derived from Vogel. Fogel in German means “bird.”

Tad Fogel - TV news  broadcaster

Tad Fogel – TV news broadcaster

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?  From about the age of 12, I wanted to be a radio & TV announcer.

Name some popular hit songs from your youth.  It’s really hard to say as I had a lot of favorites as a teenage disc jockey. Growing up on the coast, I’d have to say many of the so-called Carolina Beach Music tunes would be included at the top. Songs by groups like the Four Tops, The Embers, General Johnson & Chairman of the Board, the Tams, etc.

What are some of your favorite songs or artists?  I’d still reflect on the above artists and include Patsy Cline, our Steep Canyon Rangers and I really like Rod Stewart’s The Motown Song.

What music do you like to listen to today? I run the gamut today with easy listening, the 50’s & 60’s tunes and the artists I named above.

What was your first job ever?  I started working weekends in radio at the age of 14 at WGTN in Georgetown, SC.

What was your most prized possession as a child?  A broadcast transmitter by Heathkit that I built.

Have you ever seen a UFO?  Nope! Like many people, thought I did once or twice, but soon realized it wasn’t.

Do you believe in love at first sight?  I can’t say I do, but I do admire attractive women (hope this doesn’t get me in trouble).

What other names did your parents consider naming you?  Have never heard of others. My father was overseas in the South Pacific during World War ll when I was born and didn’t get to see me until I was 13 months old. I was named Harry for his late father who died a year before I was born.

What’s the naughtiest thing you ever did as a child?  Do I really have to say? Along with a bunch of teenage kids, I threw rotten eggs at someone’s house one night.

Were you ever bullied in school?  I felt like I was by one kid in particular. Later in life we became pretty friendly with each other.

What’s the earliest memory you have of your childhood?  My 3rd birthday party, mainly because it was on a roll of family movies.

What are your dreams for the next year? Next 5 years?  To travel more!

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Brevardian of the Week: Jeremy Owen!

Wife, Abbey, and son, Will (and dog, Sweet Pea).

Place of employment: Broker at Steve Owen and Associates

You recently were voted in as President of the Asheville Board of Realtors (recently merged with the Brevard Board of Realtors). What are your duties there?
I will serve this year as President Elect, and next year I will be President. The duties include leading the board of directors in business of the board, evaluation of opportunities and potential growth, keeping our membership updated and working to keep down costs for members to do business.

Any crazy/fun stories to share about your years working in real estate?
I’ve been very fortunate to work with a lot of great folks, both clients and agents. There are a few that really stand out but probably my most memorable story is getting lost in the woods trying to find property lines. I was with another agent scouting a property we had just listed and there were a series of trails that ran through the property and into the National Forest. I didn’t realize that there were several trails not identified on the maps I was using, and wound up in the middle of Pisgah National Forest. After a lot of extra hiking, we made it to a paved road, but we were so lost we walked the wrong way. It was a VERY long day!

You’re a new dad! Tell us about Will! How is the balancing of work and family life coming along?
It’s so amazing, I keep catching myself staring at him thinking this is the greatest thing ever! He’s a great kid and has a lot of personality, it’s so much fun. Work and family have always been intertwined for me working in a family business, and I wouldn’t want it any other way. At Steve Owen and Associates, we are a big family, so it’s been great to share the experience with everyone there and to have them lean on when I haven’t slept too much or need some parenting advice!

What’s the status of the real estate market in Brevard? (what can we expect next year?)
The market in Brevard is improving, we saw double digit increases in both the number of homes sold and total volume, and average sales price increased about $30,000 from 2013. Average list price decreased, and there is still a high level of supply, but we are seeing good signs. Land sales have been steady and the number of sales was up slightly in 2014 over 2013. I expect the market to continue on this positive path of slow growth for 2015.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
I don’t know if I ever really told anyone when I was young, but I wanted to be a meteorologist. I’ve always been fascinated by the weather and wanted to chase storms and be in the field. I never wanted to be on TV though.

What is something people would be surprised to learn about you?
I spent 5 years in the Marine Corps which was a great experience, and I came very close to making it a career.

What’s one item still on your bucket list? I want to visit WWII sites in Europe and the Pacific.

What are your hobbies? I like spending time with family, gardening, golf, college football.

Ever had a brush with a celebrity? Sara Evans, at her concert, she sang a song to me. I love her. Abbey knows and is ok with it.

What are you most proud of in your life?
I’m proud of serving our country, and the fact that my family and our business have been able to have a positive impact on the community and that although we’re not perfect, we try hard to always do the right thing and live by the golden rule.
What’s your favorite thing about living in Brevard?
I love the fact that people care about each other, and that it’s a laid back, fun place to be. There is a lot of excitement about the great things happening here, and I believe we are on the verge of something special.

What was your first job ever? I worked with my Grandfather installing vinyl siding and windows

What was the last home-cooked meal you prepared?  Collard greens, black eyed peas, turnips, and corn bread. Abbey fixed it, but I held Will and watched so that counts, right?

Do you have a secret you never told your parents?  Yes.

What’s one thing you did as a child you hope Will never does? Just reading the question makes my anxiety level shoot through the roof. HA!

When you played make-believe as a child, what did you pretend?
I pretended to be a Marine hitting the beach at Okinawa.

Name some popular hit songs from your youth. Aerosmith, Nirvana, Smashing Pumpkins, George Strait, Clint Black, Wynonna, on the country side.

Who was your favorite singer or group? Willie Nelson. I begged Abbey to name Will after him but didn’t win that one.

What music do you like to listen to today? I love Willie Nelson, Sara Evans, Johnny Cash, Aerosmith, George Jones

Describe a very proud moment in your childhood.
I remember finding a wallet at the grocery store and it was full of money. I took it to the manager and the owner was found in the store. She was very thankful of course, and I just remember that was a cool moment to see her smile and I thought if that was my grandmother, I hope someone would do the same thing I did.

How did you meet Abbey? We went to high school together, she’s a little younger than me but we knew each other. We ran into each other when she was home from college for Christmas and she began her pursuit of me then.

What other names did your parents consider naming you? I think it was Jeremy or Casey

Do you know how your first name was chosen? I don’t but I would guess knowing Dad he flipped a coin.

Do you have any New Year’s resolutions for 2015? Just to spend time with Will and Abbey and my family, and to do good.

What’s the naughtiest thing you did as a child? I don’t remember? Can I get away with that?

What are your dreams for the coming year? The next 5 years? I’m excited about seeing Will grow up and all the firsts. Crawling, walking, talking those things. My family has been here for many generations and I plan to stay here, so I intend to do my part to make this the best community possible. I want to see more economic growth and more well paying jobs, and smart growth that will enable Will to someday have a business here and raise his family in Brevard if that’s what he decides to do.

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Brevardian of the Week: Evelyn Bridges!

Evelyn & sweet Rottie at Best Friends Animal Sanctuary in Kanab, Utah (largest no-kill sanctuary in U.S.)... Evelyn has been there 4 times to volunteer with helping to care for the animals ;-)

Evelyn & sweet Rottie at Best Friends Animal Sanctuary in Kanab, Utah (largest no-kill sanctuary in U.S.)… Evelyn has been there 4 times to volunteer with helping to care for the animals ;-)

Place of employment (what do you do & where?): Steve Owen and Associates as a real estate broker for 17 1/2 yrs. Was alcohol/drug abuse counselor prior to that.

Any volunteer work? Help with any kind of animal rescue work where ever and whenever I can.

Evelyn, with husband, Marion

Evelyn, with husband, Marion

Where/how did you develop your passion for rescuing animals?
When I was 10 years old and walking home from school, I saw a small dog running around a card box box and crying. It was a mother dog and her 4 puppies had been put in the box. She was obviously abandoned by someone. I left all my school books and lunch box on side of road, picked up box of puppies and mama dog followed me home. My Daddy just laughed and asked what we were going to do with them. Well, we had mama dog spayed and got all puppies healthy and found homes for all of them. I grew up with beagles, treeing fiests, German Shepherds, cats and a couple of mixed breed dogs. Both parents and my grandmother were all big animal lovers and I just followed suit.

Click here to read Evelyn’s complete profile…  Continue reading

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Todd Alewine “Brevardian of the Week”

Todd Alewine is Lead Pastor at Brevard Community Church, and this week took time out to answer a few fun questions, as part of his “Brevardian of the Week” duties:

What’s one thing people would be surprised to learn about you?
People who know me now know me well. People that I grew up with would be surprised that I work at a church.

What’s your favorite “de-stress” technique?
playing golf

What is one thing you did growing up that you hope your kids don’t do?
Not read books. I hope they will read.

What do you hope your children will remember most about you as a father?
That I loved God and lived like it in front of them, and I always loved them and accepted them.

What’s the naughtiest thing you did as a child?
Can’t remember just one… need to ask my mom.

What’s the best gift you’ve ever received?
My wife and girls

What song (or music artist) takes you back to your high school days?
Bob Seger Band
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Martha Jo Worley “Brevardian of the Week”

Martha Jo Worley has lived in Brevard for 27 years and is Director of Maternal Child Services at Transylvania Regional Hospital where she oversees labor, delivery, postpartum and normal newborn care as well as the Neonatal Intensive Care unit. “The best part of my job,” Martha Jo explains, “is watching a couple become a family in one instant.  When a daddy starts to cry at the birth of his child, I cry with him. And, I enjoy fast labors when the doctor doesn’t make it and I get to deliver the baby. Bringing a new life into the world is such a great feeling.”

Martha Jo is also mom to her five children; Amanda 25, Katie 24, Emily 22, Allison 21, and Ricky 20. “I also have one perfect granddaughter, Harper,” Martha Jo adds. This week she took time to answer questions from

What’s one thing people would be surprised to learn about you?
I got thrown out of Christian college for pulling pranks.

What’s your favorite “de-stress” technique?
Bubble baths.  If I’m really stressed I may take two or three a day.

What is one thing you did growing up that you hope your kids don’t do?
We used to ride standing up in the back of pickup trucks down dirt roads.

What do you hope your children will remember most about you as a mother?
Many things.  Pajama runs, me mooning them to get them to clean their room, rocking them to sleep, Red Rover and Freeze Tag.

What’s the naughtiest thing you did as a child?
I left the front door open one day when we left to go to school.  When my mom got home, there were two goats sitting on the couch in the living room.

What’s the best gift you’ve ever received?
My kids gave me a cruise with one of my dearest friends.

What song (or music artist) takes you back to your high school days?
Take It to the Limit by the Eagles
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“Brevardian of the Week” Mark Peddy

Mark Peddy is President of Heart of Brevard, serves on various boards in town (Transylvania County Chamber of Commerce, Boys & Girls Club, etc.) and is owner of several Brevard businesses (Quotations, Co-Ed Cinema movie theatre, Brighter Day Coffee, and three UPS stores). This week he answered some fun questions ffrom us… and be sure to tune in to WSQL at 1pm today (Friday) when Mark joins me in the studio to chat on-air…

If you won the lottery, what would you splurge on?
I would give all my friends and family 10k.

What celebrity do people say you look like?
Mostly people used to say that I looked like Peter Jennings.

What would you say is your life’s motto?
Always prepare for the worst case scenario, then be happy when it doesn’t happen.

If you were to give special praise to someone right now, who would it be?
I would like to praise my co-worker and managing director Katrina.   She has helped make our companies into what they are today.

Who had the most influence (or had the biggest impact) on you while growing up?
My grandmother on my dad’s side.  She was one of the wisest people I have ever known and also one of the bravest.  She taught me hard work and pragmatism.  Life on the farm is tough, raising 8 boys is even tougher, but all of her kids became wonderful and successful people. 
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“Brevardian of the Week” Jimmy Harris

(Brevard’s Mayor Jimmy Harris & Louie – aka, cute photo prop)

We posed some fun questions this week to our first ever “Brevardian of the Week” Brevard Mayor Jimmy Harris:

What’s the best gift you’ve ever received?

The best gift I have ever received was a plaque from my son. He read enough books when he was in 3rd grade to be able to go to the “awards counter” full of candy, crayons, balloons and other select items. Instead of “awarding” himself with candy, he chose a plaque with a silhouette of a father and son holding hands as they walk. An accompanying poem on the plaque speaks to special moments between a father & his son. That plaque hangs on the wall in my office.

What’s been your most embarrassing moment with your children? 

My wife has drilled into his head since he was a toddler that smoking is bad! One day, while walking in front of the courthouse, he pointed to a crowd of smokers on break awaiting trial and yelled “look Daddy, bad people”. Pretty embarrassing!
What would you say is your life’s motto?
“There is no such thing as “luck.” The true definition of “luck“ is “when preparedness meets opportunity.” I’ve lived by this ever since my father told me this when I was a child. It has motivated me to rely on determination, perseverance and developed skill.


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