LADUE NEWS has received a 2009 Media Award from the AMERICAN CANCER SOCIETY, which recognizes excellence in communicating about cancer. LN was among 16 winners from six states applauded for reporting on cancer issues and survivorship. LN staffers received their award live via Web cast during a Nov. 11 ceremony. The award-winning article, ‘Life Lessons: Living with Breast Cancer,’ was written by contributing LN health writer MARY JO BLACKWOOD.

The REV. MSGR. VINCENT BOMMARITO, pastor of Saint Ambrose Parish on the Hill, is the 2009 recipient of the Great Preacher Award from the Aquinas Institute of Theology. In bestowing the honor, the Institute praised Bom marito’s ability to ‘inspire by both word and action, and for his unselfish and untiring service to God’s people.’ Ordained a priest in 1977, Bommarito has been assigned to a number of local parishes and was appointed by POPE BENEDICT XVI as a Chaplain of His Holiness and given the title of Monsignor last year.

Way to go, team! The LADUE HIGH SCHOOL GIRLS TENNIS TEAM is this year’s Missouri State Champion! Congratulations to coach JASON THEODOSIOU and his team: LINDSEY WHITEHEAD, ANNIE KOPP, ABBY SOPHIR, KELSEY BEARMAN, KATH ERINE GLASER, NATALIE JARMON and alternate ELLA GLASER. The team finished with 16 wins and two losses, and placed first in the Parkway West Doubles and Suburban South/West Con ference tournaments.

Beginning Nov. 21, gingerbread house creations for the THIRD ANNUAL GINGERBREAD HOUSE CONTEST AND AUCTION will be on display at Plaza Frontenac. Edible entries from local executive chefs will feature local landmarks decked out for the holidays. Shoppers are encouraged to participate in the silent auction of the houses, with all proceeds to benefit LYDIA’S HOUSE, an agency that helps abused women and their children. The display runs through Dec. 11.

As you plan your family’s Thanksgiving meal, please keep in mind those who depend on area food banks for their holiday feast. The HARVEY KORNBLUM JEWISH FOOD PANTRY, which serves St. Louisans of all faiths, is among the many organizations experiencing a record number of clients this year. Needed items include: canned meat and vegetables, mashed potatoes, rice, pasta, pasta sauce and soups. Donations can be dropped off at the Ladue News office (8811 Ladue Road) or at Jewish Family & Children’s Service (10950 Schuetz Road in Creve Coeur).

The Wall Street Journal spotlight shone last month on DR. F. SESSIONS COLE, director of newborn medicine at St. Louis Children’s Hospital. The newspaper hailed the good doctor’s newborn intensive-care unit as a leader in ‘family-centered care’—an approach that encourages families to be a key part of the medical team by offering observations during rounds and participating in treatment discussions before they take their infant home.

Congratulations to LAURIE SOLET, who has opened her second location in Town & Country. Her namesake boutique in Clayton has been dressing fashionistas since 2003. The new store, located at Clayton and Woodsmill Roads, carries new lines and favorites such as Paige, Velvet, Splendid, Free People and Black Halo.

Professional Remodeler magazine’s October issue featuring 2009 Market Leaders highlights the work of SCOTT MOSBY of Mosby Building Arts. Mosby was chosen as one of the best examples of an experienced and proven remodeling company staying strong during tough economic times.

Tower Grove, the new book by MARK ABBOTT, is a must-read for anyone interested in St. Louis history. In it, Abbott discusses the early development of the neighborhoods surrounding Tower Grove Park, as well as important streets, people, landmarks and institutions that have shaped the South St. Louis community. Abott is a history professor at Harris-Stowe University.

Local spiritual mentor JOHN DOZIER of Ladue has written a new book, The Weeping, the Window, the Way, a personal, heartbreaking account of coping after tragedy. On Christmas night 2002, Dozier found his father’s body in the snow after the elder Dozier committed suicide. The book includes the author’s ‘workbook for the heart’ to help the suffering heal.

Kudos to DONNA STAUFFER, this year’s recipient of the Service to Children Award from RANKEN JORDAN—A Pedi atric Specialty Hospital. Stauffer, the tennis coach at Lafayette High School, is a longtime hospital volunteer known for her ready-and-willing attitude.