Our Mission

French Quarter Festivals, Inc. (FQFI) annually produces three festivals: French Quarter Festival, Satchmo SummerFest, and Christmas New Orleans Style. FQFI is a 501©3 nonprofit organization whose mission is to promote the Vieux Carré and the City of New Orleans through high quality special events and activities that showcase the culture and heritage of this unique city, contribute to the economic well being of the community, and instill increased pride in the people of New Orleans.

About French Quarter Festivals, Inc.

French Quarter Festivals, Inc. – The Facts!

  • In 2014 – French Quarter Festival celebrated its 31th Anniversary; Christmas New Orleans Style celebrates its 30th anniversary; and Satchmo SummerFest celebrates its 14th anniversary.
  • French Quarter Festival was first produced in 1984 as a way to bring residents back to the Quarter; following the World’s Fair and extensive sidewalk repairs in the French Quarter.
  • More than 2,000 community volunteers help to make the festival a success.
  • French Quarter Festivals, Inc. is a private, non-profit 501©3 organization.
  • French Quarter Festival is the largest, free music festival in the South.
  • Chief sources of funding are: sponsorships, beverage and merchandise sales, vendor fees, and annual Gala.
  • 21 stages throughout the French Quarter celebrate local music and represent every genre from traditional and contemporary jazz to R&B, New Orleans funk, brass bands, folk, gospel, Latin, Zydeco, classical, cabaret, and international.
  • New Orleans great restaurants, create the food and beverage offerings know as “The World’s Largest Jazz Brunch” in Jackson Square, the Louisiana State Museum’s Old U.S. Mint and Woldenberg Riverfront Park during festival weekend; Satchmo SummerFest hosts New Orleans restaurants, known as “Red Bean Alley”, with Louis Armstrong-inspired dishes and great local cuisine. Louisiana restaurants are invited to participate in these festivals.
  • French Quarter Festival has been consistently voted “favorite festival”, “favorite food festival”, and “favorite event open to the public” by locals.

Attendance Overview

  • French Quarter Festival 2014 attendance – over 732,000 people
  • French Quarter Festival 2013 attendance – over 560,000 people
  • Satchmo SummerFest 2013 attendance – nearly 54,000 people
  • French Quarter Festival 2012 attendance – over 574,000 people
  • Satchmo SummerFest 2012 attendance – over 27,500 people
  • French Quarter Festival attendees are 49% locals and 51% visitors
  • Satchmo SummerFest attendees are 53% locals and 47% visitors
  • Visitors from as many as 37 states have attended FQF. Top 5 states – Louisiana, California, New York, Texas, Florida
  • Visitors from as many as 12 countries have attended FQF: top Countries – Canada, United Kingdom, Norway, France, Germany

Economic Impact

According to an analysis of the French Quarter Festival Visitors Survey conducted by The University of New Orleans (UNO) Hospitality Research Center, in 2012 French Quarter Festival generated a total economic impact of more than $259.5 million, including $126.6 million in direct spending and $132.9 million in secondary spending. Additionally, the event generated over $18.3 million in state and local tax revenue.

  • FQF employs more than 1,400 local musicians during Festival weekend
  • FQF hosts over 60 local restaurants which make up the “World’s Largest Jazz Brunch” at the Festival.
  • FQF employs only local companies during the Festival (sanitation, stages, sound, security, etc.). All money spent to produce the festival stays within the local economy.

Meet the Staff

Meet Our Staff


Marci Schramm, Executive Director

French Quarter Festivals Inc. named Marci Schramm executive director in January 2008. She served as Executive Director of the New Orleans Opera and also held the position of Marketing and Public Relations Director for opera companies such as Michigan Opera Theatre (Detroit, MI), Opera Pacific (Orange County, CA) and the New Orleans Opera. Following Hurricane Katrina in 2005, Schramm was a key organizer of ‘A Night for New Orleans’ gala benefit concert starring Placido Domingo. The concert took place at the New Orleans Arena and gained national attention as the first major cultural event for the city following the storm. Schramm is a veteran at producing large-scale events, including a Three Tenors concert at Detroit’s historic Tiger Stadium and Andrea Bocelli’s North American opera debut in 2000. She also helped organize a $100-million campaign to restore an abandoned theater for new use as the home of Michigan Opera Theatre in Detroit.


Dave Stover, Business Manager

Dave Stover embodies the perfect mix of talents for French Quarter Festivals, Inc. – he is a professional musician and a professional accountant. Stover attended Florida State University and graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in 1995. Shortly after graduation he moved to New Orleans to pursue a career in music. As a bass player, Stover has enjoyed sharing the stage with many of the city’s incredible musicians performing a myriad of musical genres. After Hurricane Katrina, Stover moved to Nashville to further his education by studying accounting at Middle Tennessee State University. After two years away he returned home to New Orleans and joined the French Quarter Festival staff in the fall of 2009.


Georgia G. Rhody, Manager of Musician Sponsorships and Food Vendors

Georgia Rhody is a native of Columbus, Mississippi. Shortly after graduating from college, her love of the local New Orleans food and music scene inspired her to establish roots in one of the many culturally rich neighborhoods of New Orleans, the Bywater. Georgia has worked in the recording industry, starting with a record label and expanding to form a partnership of her own in the Truckfarm Recording Studio. The Studio produced works by over 100 artists from around the world. One local violinist, besides being a client, became her husband. Georgia has been a key member of the teams that produce The New Orleans Wine & Food Experience, The Po-Boy Preservation Festival and Tales of the Cocktail. Most recently she worked for New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival’s Operations Department.


Greg Schatz, Entertainment Manager

New York native Greg Schatz majored in music at Ithaca College for one year and later received a B.A. from Cornell University, where he studied anthropology and ethnomusicology. He moved to New Orleans in 1995 to pursue a career in music. As a composer, bass player, accordionist, and keyboard player, he works with several ensembles around New Orleans and has performed at clubs and festivals in Europe and around the U.S., including French Quarter Festival. In fall 2008, he joined the staff of French Quarter Festivals, Inc. as Entertainment Manager.


Stephanie Loman, Operations Manager

Stephanie Loman is a native Louisianian who earned her B.A. in Cultural Resources Management from Southeastern Louisiana University and her M.A. in Arts Administration from University of New Orleans. She has worked for several local cultural institutions, including WYES, The Historic New Orleans Collection, Contemporary Arts Center, The National World War II Museum and 3 Ring Circus Arts and Education Center, with a range of experiences in events production, membership, development, research, archives and historic preservation. Stephanie was hired to work as the French Market Traditional Jazz Stage Manager at the 2009 French Quarter Festival and joined FQFI as full-time team member in 2011.


Kylee Kidder, Manager of Volunteers and Educational Programing

Kylee Kidder earned a B.A. in Theatre Arts at the University of Arizona and received her M.A. in Arts Administration from the University of New Orleans. Kylee first became involved with FQFI as an operations assistant during French Quarter Festival 2012. Previously she has worked with the Jazz and Heritage Foundation, New Orleans Jazz Institute, New Orleans Fringe Festival and 3 Ring Circus Arts and Education Center. She brings a spirit for volunteering, love of festivals, and an incessant search for fun (especially if costumes are involved).

Rebecca Sell, Marketing and Publicity Manager

Rebecca Sell first visited New Orleans from her native Midwest in 2002 and immediately realized that she wasn’t just on vacation, she was home. Rebecca brings a decade of journalism, tourism, marketing, non-profit, and management experience to FQFI; she is also a licensed tour guide who conducts walking tours of the French Quarter. Rebecca has been published in several regional publications including New Orleans Magazine and Southern Woman. She resides in the historic Bywater and can be found parading with the Krewe de Jeanne d’Arc, Krewe Delusion, and the Muffalottas in her free time.


Erin Stover, Merchandise Manager

Erin first joined French Quarter Festivals, Inc. as an office volunteer and quickly worked her way up to Volunteer Coordinator. As Merchandise Manager, Erin’s keen sense of aesthetics keeps the FQF store stocked with an array of options that let fans show their love for the Festival. Erin began her professional career at Avnet Computers where she managed the day to day facility-related operations at one of their largest call centers. Her career then took her to Denver, Colorado. In 2009 Erin moved to New Orleans to be closer to her family and the city she loves. In her free time, she enjoys parading with the NOLA Cherry Bombs and spending time with her family.


Cerise McClendon, Sponsorship and Development Manager
Born and raised in New Orleans, Cerise is an alumni of Southern University and A&M College. The newest addition to the FQFI team, Cerise previously worked for Girl Scouts Louisiana East where she was the Development Manager of Corporate Giving and Major Gifts. On Mardi Gras mornings, Cerise can be found parading with Zulu Social Aid and Pleasure Club as a Parade Duchess. She is also an active member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.


RueDe Poste

The official mascot of French Quarter Festival. RueDe is truly a man of the French Quarter. Before serving as mascot, RueDe was responsible for lighting the 400 block of Royal Street. Now as mascot, his duties include: welcoming over 500,000 visitors to his home and publishing the official FQFI newsletter, The Poste de la Rue. Outside of work, RueDe is a trumpeter, collector of sunglasses, and also works with young lamps at Bevolo Lighting.

Contact Us

Address
French Quarter Festivals, Inc.
400 North Peters Street, Suite 205
New Orleans, LA 70130
Phone: (504) 522-5730
Toll Free: (800) 673-5725
Fax: (504) 522-5711
info@fqfi.org

Staff
Marci Schramm
Executive Director
marci@fqfi.org
(504) 227-3122

David Stover
Business Manager
stover@fqfi.org
(504) 227-3124

Georgia Rhody
Manager of Musician Sponsorship and Food Vendors
georgia@fqfi.org

Greg Schatz
Entertainment Manager
greg@fqfi.org
(504) 227-3120

Stephanie Loman
Operations Manager
stephanie@fqfi.org
(504) 227-3123

Kylee Kidder
Manager of Volunteers and Educational Programing
kylee@fqfi.org
(504) 227-3120

Rebecca Sell
Marketing and Publicity Manager
rebecca@fqfi.org
(504) 227-3119

Erin Stover
Merchandise Manager
erin@fqfi.org
(504) 227-3126

Cerise McClendon
Development and Sponsorship Manager
cerise@fqfi.org
(504) 227-3125

2014 Board Members

2014 Officers

President – Ann Wills

V. President – Errin Bellan

Treasurer and Secretary – Jeremy Thibodeaux

2014 Board of Directors
Stu Barash
Charlie Bateman
Errin Bellan
Michael Biri
Cheri Blair
Barrett Cooper
Richard Egle
Aynsley Fein
Janice Foulks
Pat Fretwell
Jaquelyn Frick
Paul Harang
Greg Hoffman
Ronnie Kole
Tim Laughlin
Alex I. Lewis, III
G. Patrick McGunagle
Deborah J. Moench
James L. Moffett, III
Lea Siegel
Tricia Sperier
Amy Taylor
Trevor Kade Theunissen
Jeremy Thibodeaux
Adrienne Thomas
Brenda Thornton
Ann Wills