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The 19th Annual Sisterhood Outreach Summit & Showcase postponed

sisterhood 600The 19th Annual Sisterhood Outreach Summit & Showcase sponsored by Grace Magazine and typically held in June has been postponed.

"We regret any disappointment created by the postponement of the Sisterhood Showcase," said Christina Stevison, owner and publisher of Grace Magazine, in a released statement.

"The Showcase has a rich legacy and reputation for being one of the Mid-South's favorite events. Unfortunately, due to litigation filed against former employees Toni Harvey, the magazine's former editor-in-chief, and Chris Boyd, former operations director, Grace Magazine will not be able to produce a Showcase in June 2014.

"For over 18 years, the Sisterhood Showcase has become known for exemplifying high program standards and we will absolutely do nothing less!"

Stevison became publisher of Grace Magazine last year after the passing of her mother, Tina L. Birchett, founder of Grace Magazine and the Sisterhood Showcase. Efforts to reach Stevison were ongoing at Tuesday's TSDMemphis.com deadline.

TSD President and Publisher, Bernal E. Smith II, met Monday with Boyd and Harvey to discuss a new magazine project that they are working on. At the time, neither had been served nor were they aware of any pending litigation involving them. They did acknowledge the split with Stevison.

"We simply had a difference in philosophy in how to do business," said Harvey. "It is not our intention to harm her, the magazine or the event. In fact we want her to succeed."

Boyd and Harvey noted that they had begun a process of transitioning relationships and contacts directly to Stevison to allow her to move forward without them. They encouraged Smith to reach out to Stevison to possibly assist with the Grace Magazine publication and the Sisterhood Showcase event. Smith had indicated some months ago a willingness to assist with the ongoing transition and growth of both Grace and the Sisterhood Showcase.

On Tuesday morning, Harvey said neither she nor Boyd had yet been served with any legal papers and that they knew nothing of any of the allegations Stevison mentioned in the news release announcing the Showcase's postponement.

"To this point we have not been served and simply can't comment on the allegations as we don't know what they are," said Harvey. "Once we do we, will consult our legal counsel, Ricky Wilkins, and take things from there."

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