Lafayette Parish City-Parish President Joey Durel will focus squarely on the future of our community in the 2010 State of the Parish address, slated for Tuesday, Feb. 2, at the Cajundome Convention Center. He’s invited UL President Dr. Joe Savoie to share the podium with him this year to emphasize the university’s vital role as a resource in shaping that vision and to talk about the synergistic opportunities for maximizing Lafayette’s potential.

“Of course UL is a big part of the local economic base,” says Durel, “but it also contributes to our overall quality of life way beyond its payroll and physical plant. From workforce development and intellectual capital to the global diversity of its student population, UL enhances Lafayette’s appeal and opportunity to grow in thoughtful, meaningful ways.” Durel says he and Savoie meet often to discuss collaborative opportunities between UL and Lafayette Consolidated Government and look forward to sharing their ideas with the community at large.

This is the seventh year that the State of the Parish Address will launch The Independent’s annual Lecture Series. The Smart Growth Lecture, which is also presented each year in the spring, is tentatively slated for April 1. In addition to the INDesign Awards for excellence in architecture and interior design, that program will include an update on the long-awaited growth management plan, which has been funded by LCG for 2010. On April 21, the Lecture Series will partner with the first-ever Fiber Fete, a three-day event that will bring the country’s leading Internet innovators to Lafayette to explore ways to maximize the LUS fiber optic infrastructure for economic development. Future lecture topics under consideration: the congressional mid-term elections, public education and energy.

IberiaBank is the presenting sponsor of the Lecture Series, and Lafayette market President Pete Yuan says it is a service the bank feels is critical to the future of Acadiana. “Since its inception, this lecture series has featured experts on a variety of topics that are important to our community,” Yuan says. “We hope that through this forum we can continue to play a role in educating and inspiring those around us who have a vested interest in making Acadiana an outstanding place to call home.”

Tickets for the 2010 State of the Parish Address, titled “Partners in the Past Looking to the Future,” are $40 per person or $350 for a table of eight. Theatre-style seating will be available at no charge for those who choose not to order lunch. For information, contact Kathy Lowry via e-mail at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or at 769-8603.

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