Craig G. Duplechin has joined First Bank and Trust as vice president and manager of the bank’s Lafayette private banking department. The New Orleans-based bank has Lafayette locations at 1201 Camellia Blvd. in River Ranch and 2701 Johnston St. Duplechin has more than 16 years of banking experience, primarily specializing in serving private banking clients throughout the Acadiana market. A 1991 graduate of UL Lafayette, Duplechin has been actively involved in numerous civic and community activities in the Lafayette area throughout his career. He is on the board of directors for the Leadership Institute of Acadiana and chairs the board of trustees for the Schools of the Sacred Heart in Grand Coteau. He is a member of the Greater Lafayette Chamber of Commerce and is a graduate of its Leadership Lafayette program, now chairing the successful leadership-building initiative’s selection committee.
Veteran radio and TV broadcaster Rod Bernard has joined Michael Allen Marketing as vice president of media. Bernard began a music career at 10 years old with a weekly radio program on KSLO in his hometown of Opelousas. In the 1950s he recorded several regional and national rock and roll hits and toured with the likes of Chuck Berry, Fats Domino, Roy Orbison, BB King, Frankie Avalon and Jerry Lee Lewis. Bernard also appeared on American Bandstand with Dick Clark. From 1960 to 1970 he served as the music and program director at radio station KVOL; he moved into television and most recently worked for Acadiana 7 KPLC. Michael Allen Marketing is a 12-year-old Merryville-based company that expanded to Lafayette in March 2007. It offers full-serve marketing, sales training and consultation and has an advertising agency division.
The Institute of Museum and Library Services has awarded a $1,000 stipend to museum Director Mark Tullos for his commitment to the preservation of care of collections in the Paul and Lulu Hilliard University Art Museum. The stipend will be used to cover expenses associated with Tullos’ attendance at the forum “Stewardship of America’s Legacy: Answering the Call to Action” June 16-17 in Buffalo, New York. The forum will bring together front-line leaders in the movement to save America’s collections for future generations.
The Lafayette Chapter of the American Association of Drilling Engineers is providing financial assistance for UL Lafayette, Nicholls State and LSU students for the spring 2009 semester. The Lafayette Chapter of AADE contributes about $35,000 per semester in scholarships. Spring scholarship recipients include Jeremy Pye, Andrew Patin, Vincent Patin, Jessica Mayer, Alejandro Alvarez and Bilel Boukadi, UL; Darrell Clark, Shane Duhon and Sean Thibodeaux, NSU; and Francis Victor Jordan IV, Gavin Daniel Broussard, Cody Steel Rodriguez and Michel Cade Jackson, LSU.
David Calhoun and Elizabeth “EB” Brooks are the first two employees of Lafayette Central Park Inc., the nonprofit charged with turning Lafayette Consolidated Government’s 100-acre Johnston Street Horse Farm property into a passive public park. Calhoun was named executive director, and Brooks is director of planning and design.
There will soon be a whole lot of shakin’ going on at Benny’s Sportshack Supplement Depot, a new concept by Opelousas native Benny Nele. Located at 2002 Johnston St., the supplement shop, smoothie bar and café, featuring hot off the press paninis and wraps, plans to open in late May.