Seven leaders from Lafayette have been chosen by the Council for A Better Louisiana as members of its 2009 Leadership Louisiana program. Kimberly Florsheim, Vice President of Operations for Ivy Hospitality, Kenny Hix, President of Schilling Distributors, Adam Lemoine, Managing Member/Principal of Lemoine Interests, Mark Romero, Executive Vice President/PCL of Brown and Brown Insurance, Jaci Russo, Senior Partner of The Russo Group, Mike Sonnier, Operations Manager of the Air Service Division of Acadian Ambulance and Air Med Service, and Gerd Wuestemann, Executive Director of the Acadiana Center for the Arts, are part of a class of 50 chosen from across the state.
“We are really excited to have another great group of outstanding leaders participating in Leadership Louisiana this year,” says Stephanie Desselle, CABL Sr. Vice President and director of the program. “They represent a diverse group of forward-thinking people who care about Louisiana and want to make it better. Our state is fortunate to have so many leaders who are keenly interested in the future of our state and communities.”
Leadership Louisiana is designed to build the capacity of leaders from the civic, business, government, university, nonprofit, professional and cultural sectors of our state. The program focuses on increasing understanding of complex public issues, exploring innovative solutions, building statewide networks and inspiring civic involvement
Through the course of six meetings in different locations around Louisiana during the year, participants in Leadership Louisiana receive:
• In-depth, strategic information about critical issues from leading experts
• On-site demonstrations and tours in various regions
• Briefings from leaders who are making a difference with real solutions
• Diverse geographical and cultural experiences
• Opportunities for open dialogue and frank exchanges through round-table discussions
• Insight into the people, places and history that influence public policies
• Resource materials, travel guides, on-line sites, reports, local profiles and all the latest news on a variety of issues, attractions and events in Louisiana
Leadership Louisiana boasts more than 800 alumni of the program. They include CEOs, bankers, state elected and appointed officials, mayors, entrepreneurs, university administrators, physicians and health care executives, publishers and editors, nonprofit executives, attorneys, legislators, judges, District Attorneys, and many top professionals from other fields.
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.