Rita Wilson Howard’s many accomplishments include being the recipient of 89 local, state, and national beauty/talent honors including “Miss Tennessee 1961” – all of which placed her into the National Pageantry Hall of Fame. She was one of the first inductees into the National Baton Twirling Hall of Fame, a professional actress for fifteen years and has coached countless pageant and baton championship winners. In 2000, she and her British husband, Charles Peter Howard, built HRH Vineyards and Crown Winery where she served as CEO.
Peter Howard’s list of accomplishments are numerous and varied. Born in England in 1942, he immigrated to the U.S. in 1978 to help the automotive industry build more fuel-efficient vehicles. He later developed a fitness instrument used on the MIR space station, as well as by Olympians, college athletes, hospitals and more. This devoted husband and father was a gas physicist, engineer, inventor, scientist, real estate developer, farmer, poet, athlete and vintner who—with his wife—built the largest vineyard in Tennessee along with his beloved Crown Winery.
Bishop G.E. Patterson
Born in Humboldt in 1939, Bishop G.E. Patterson later moved to Memphis and became the founder of Bountiful Blessings Deliverance Church, Inc., in 1975. Among his many accomplishments, he organized eight other independent churches under Bountiful Blessings, was the president and GM of WBBP-AM, offered a prayer at President George Bush’s inaugural prayer service at the Washington Cathedral in 2005, was nominated for both a Grammy Award and a Soul Train Music Award in 2006 and received a Stellar Award for Traditional Male Vocalist of the Year in 2007.
Lt. Orin Clay
After graduating from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1989, Lieutenant Commander Orin Clay served multiple deployments on three vessels to over 20 countries. During his shore duty assignments, he served at NATO and the Pentagon before being combat deployed to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. After retirement, he continued as a technology management consultant to the Department of Homeland Security. His military awards include the Meritorious Service Medal, Joint Commendation Medal, Navy Commendation Medal, Army Commendation Medal and the Navy Achievement Medal.