ESU Kentucky Branch

A Message from the Kentucky Branch President

The English-Speaking Union of the United States (ESU US) is a non-profit, non-political, educational service organization whose mission is to promote scholarship and the advancement of knowledge through the effective use of English in an expanding global community. The Kentucky Branch is a vibrant, active organization with a devoted focus on enabling student and teacher scholars to study in the United Kingdom and promoting scholarship with students from our state.

The Kentucky Branch

The Kentucky Branch of the ESU was chartered in 1923 by local business and civic leaders. In the 1960's Mr. Josh Everett took the task of expanding the organization in Kentucky and served many years in that leadership role. Notable branch presidents included Mr. Barry Bingham, Sr. and later Mr. Keith Runyon, Forum Editor for the Courier Journal. In 1960 Norman McKenna was the first scholar sent by the Kentucky Branch to study in the United Kingdom. Dr. McKenna served as Branch President from 1992-94. Since 1964, over 500 Kentucky teachers and college students have been awarded scholarships by the Kentucky Branch. The current President is Mrs. Kate Scharre Nitzken, NBCT, who was a past ESU scholar teacher selected in 2009 to study Teaching Shakespeare through Performance at Shakespeare's New Globe Theater in London.

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News And Events

British Isles Cuisine Compeition

Who:  The city of Louisville is invited to participate in the English-Speaking Union Kentucky Branch and Sullivan University cook-off featuring top Sullivan University International Student Chef Competitors.

What:  Over $4000.00 in scholarship prizes will be awarded to the winning teams of this championship cook-off.  The excitement will mount as competitors battle it out, preparing the iconic cuisine of the British Isles. 

When:  February 27, 2020, 6:00 - 8:00 PM.

Where: Hosted in the Pendennis Club Ballroom

Cost:  Before February 20 tickets will be $20.00, after February 20 the cost will be $30.00 per person.  

Don't miss the fun!  This cookoff is open to the public with plenty of tasting portions, a cash bar, and music from the isles.  The audience will join in the voting along with three celebrity judges.  

For tickets and more information please click here. 


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Save the Date: Christmas Party

Click on image to view larger version.

 Special thanks to Sarah Herron Photography for creating our invitation.

Please click here to register online. 


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The 2019 Scholar Presentation Brunch and General Meeting

The English-Speaking Union, Kentucky Branch

Cordially invites you to attend

The 2019 Scholar Presentation
Brunch and General Meeting

Come enjoy a delicious brunch and exciting experiences from the ESU 2019 Scholars detailing their outstanding educational and travel experiences in the United Kingdom. A brief General Meeting will precede the talks.

Sunday, September 22, 2019 from
12:00 – 2:00 PM

Audubon Country Club
3265 Robin Rd, Louisville, KY 40213

Cost is $26.00 for members and $30.00 for non-members, you can mail a check to or use the ESU online PayPal at this link. 

The cost is $26.00 for members, $30.00 for non-members. Please RSVP to Lynn Smith, Events Chair by September 8

6000 Eastwind Way, Crestwood, KY, email: or (502)384-4757, or pay at PayPal link at the Kentucky ESU webpage: here.


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The Queen’s Birthday Tea

The ESU Kentucky Branch sponsored a Queen's Birthday Tea on June 2, 2019.  The historic mansion of Mr. and Mrs. William Wetherton was the perfect location to host the annual event.  Members were delighted by the stories of the home, the Queen's favorite music played by Commonwealth Musicians, lively presentations from members of the Colonial Wars, Louisville Fox Hunters, student performers from the Youth performing Arts School and Commonwealth Theatre Company, costumed members from the Jane Austin Society, and a bagpiper.  The delicious food and opportunity to visit with members and guests made the event most enjoyable.

This year, the event celebrated the most recent scholars, funded by the Kentucky Branch, to attend ESU TLab programs in the United Kingdom.  The 2019 scholars, selected from among top students throughout Kentucky, are Shania Goble, Katie Huffman, Hannah Bishop, and McKenzi Gooley.  Each student received a check that covered travel expenses and transportation costs.  This spring event was attended by one hundred guests and members who support the scholarly efforts of the Kentucky Branch.  Thank you to everyone who supported this important event!

If you wish to purchase or view additional event pictures, please click here. 

The Hosts for the 2019 Queen's Birthday Tea, Mr. and Mrs. William Wetherton

The Fox Hunt Club members


William Carroll, Society of Colonial Wars in the Commonwealth of Kentucky Color Guard )  

The 2019 ESU Kentucky Branch Scholars – Shania Goble, Katie Huffman, Hanna Bishop, credit John Harrelson with the image

A Winter's Tale – Performances of scenes by students from the Youth Performing Arts School and Commonwealth Theatre Company

Members and guests of the ESU Kentucky Branch enjoying the delicious food and performances.



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Please join us for The Queen's Birthday Tea

Presented by the English-Speaking Union, Kentucky Branch

Don't hang up your derby hats just yet…

Today the English-Speaking Union, Kentucky Branch announced that they will host The Queen's Birthday Tea to be held at the Anchorage Home of Mr. and Mrs. William Wetherton. This annual event celebrates the Kentucky university scholars and teachers chosen to study abroad in England and Scotland. 


Chance to celebrate outstanding Kentucky Scholars

After a rigorous search process, four scholars have been chosen to study at Cambridge University, Oxford University, and University of Edinburgh. Kentucky ESU has sent over 500 scholar students and teachers to experience educational opportunities available in Britain to foster friendship and global understanding.  Come meet this year's scholars at this event! Along with a delightful tea, the day will also feature performances from the student winner of the 2019 ESU Kentucky Shakespeare Competition, scenes presented by the Youth Performing Arts School and the Commonwealth Theatre Company. All proceeds go to continuing the scholastic outreach and programming of the English-Speaking Union, Kentucky Branch.

Please consider being a sponsor to support our educational mission. Sponsorships are tax deductible:

4 Event tickets, 1 Year Membership and Program Listing

WINDSOR ($250-499)
2 Event Tickets and Program Listing

BALMORAL ($150-249)
1 Event Ticket and Program Listing


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The English-Speaking Union

Kentucky Branch

Welcome to the ESU

The ESU celebrates English as a shared language to foster global understanding and good will by providing educational and cultural opportunities for students, educators, and members.

To find out more about our programs click here.