2022 King and Queen Announced

Gulf Coast Carnival Association King and Queen portraits at Golden Nugget in Biloxi, Mississippi, on Saturday, January 29, 2022. Photo by James Edward Bates Photography.


Robert J. “Bobby” Knesal of Gulfport is the husband of Rhonda Underwood Knesal.  They are the parents of Geoffrey J. Knesal and C. Jarrod Knesal. He is the son of the late Bill and Betty Knesal.

Bobby is a 1973 graduate of Gulfport East High School.  He attended Mississippi State University where he received a Bachelor of Science degree  in civil engineering in 1977.  He is a registered professional engineer and land surveyor.

He is senior vice-president of H2O Innovation, a publicly traded company specializing in design/build and operation of water and wastewater treatment systems and the operation and management of Public Works Departments through Privatization contracts with several cities and utility authorities.  They employ over 600 people regionally.  He was previously Vice President of Utility Partners, a private utility management company and was instrumental in the sale of the company to H2O Innovation.  

As a private land developer, he has developed several residential subdivisions in Gulfport and Harrison County including Stanton Place, The Briars and Brookestone.  He has also developed commercial properties in Gulfport and Hattiesburg, MS. 

He is a member of American Society of Civil Engineers, Association of General Contractors, and Mississippi Engineering Society.  He was appointed by the Harrison County Board of Supervisors as a commissioner for the Mississippi State Port Authority in Gulfport.  He is currently president, serving his 10th year on the commission.

He is also currently a board member of the Miss. Coast Foreign Trade Zone and President of the Utility Infrastructure division of the Association of General Contractors.

He is a lifelong member of St. James Catholic Church in Gulfport where he served as a member and president of the parish council.

Bobby served as a Duke in 2007. His wife, Rhonda Knesal is a Biloxi native who was queen of Les Cavaliers in 2001, queen of The Revelers in 2016 and maid in Order of Billikens on two occasions.  His brother-in-law, Dr. Mitchell Gruich, Jr. was previously a GCCA duke and her sister Janice Gruich was previously queen of Billikens.

Bobby and Rhonda enjoy traveling to the Caribbean Islands, Key West and to New Orleans for Saints football games with close friends and family.  Don’t invite them to travel north as they hate the cold and do not snow ski.

During the Corona virus shutdown their friends, Candy Lambert and Dickie & Nancy Dunaway christened their group the Covid 5 and they continued to travel, although mainly on local boating outings cruising the bayous and visiting the coastal islands.

He is also a member of The Pelican’s Roost, a private group of friends who own a camp on Cat Island which they never visit enough.  It is a great escape close to home and may be the location of his retirement job one day.  Somebody has to keep the alligators and racoons fed.

Queen Madison Elizabeth Warren

Madison Elizabeth Warren of Gulfport is the daughter of Steven Michael Warren and Jamie Elizabeth Warren. Her maternal grandmother is Nancy Elizabeth Pepperman. Her paternal grandparents are Lawrence Wayne and Bonnie Purvis Warren and Beverly Joyce Warren. 

She is a graduate of Gulfport High School. She was a varsity cheerleader, a member of the homecoming court, and a class favorite.  She was a member of National Honor Society, Key Club, the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, a Mississippi Eminent Scholar, and Universal Cheerleading Association 4-time All-American Cheerleader. She is also a graduate of Mississippi State University with a bachelor’s degree in marketing. She was a Mississippi State Foundation Ambassador, serving as vice president and events coordinator, a member of Kappa Delta Sorority, serving on the food committee and logistics team, and a collaborate programmer for the Resident Hall Association. She was a member of the National Society of Leadership and Success, the Accounting and Financial Women’s Alliance, Mississippi State’s Research & Development Committee, Undergraduate Women in Business, & Accounting and Finance Student Society. 

Madison is a member of Trinity United Methodist Church and danced with Kelli’s Steps Showstoppers. She was a member of the Gulf Coast Debutante Society. She was awarded a Freshman Academic Scholarship, Key Club Scholarship, and was invited to represent Mississippi State University at the Mississippi Innovators Hall of Fame Awards Gala for the induction of Leo Seal, Jr. 

Madison was a maid to Queen Ixolib in 2020 and a flag bearer in 2013. Her father, Steven Warren, was a duke in 2011. Her sister, Hannah Warren, was a flag bearer in 2015. Her sister, Haley Warren, was a flag bearer in 2016. 

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