Former Acadian exec launches lobbying, consulting firm
Lafayette attorney Tyron Picard has formed The Picard Group, a state/federal governmental affairs, lobbying and business consulting group. Picard is the former executive vice president of legal and governmental affairs for Acadian Ambulance Service and its related affiliates.
The new firm is headquartered in Lafayette at 1201 Camellia Blvd. in River Ranch and also has offices in Baton Rouge and Washington, D.C. It will serve clients at the local, state and federal levels. In December Picard announced his resignation from Acadian, where he worked for the past 12 years, to pursue this opportunity.
Picard also announced this week that his firm will have an affiliation agreement with the Roedel Parsons Law Firm of Baton Rouge. Picard will serve as special counsel to Roedel Parsons and lead the firm’s Lafayette office. Roedel Parsons’ governmental relations section is led by Johnny Koch of Baton Rouge and CJ Blache of New Orleans. The BR-based firm represents a broad base of clients, among which is Atmos Energy, Women’s and Children’s Hospital/HCA in Lafayette, the New Orleans Convention Center, Wal-Mart, Chevron and many others with ties to New Orleans.
Lafayette native Emily Bacque will serve as The Picard Group’s primary federal government relations advocate in the firm’s D.C. office with its affiliate government relations firm, CJ Lake. CJ Lake represents regional and national clients in transportation, telecommunications, military, defense, utility, financial, environmental and local government issues. The firm’s client base includes cities and counties, small businesses and a Fortune 500 corporation. Prior to joining CJ Lake, Bacque served for five years as legislative assistant to U.S. Sen. John Breaux and brings a wide range of knowledge of grants, appropriations and discretionary funding opportunities on the federal level.
Also, Aprill Springfield joins The Picard Group as director of public policy research. “Aprill brings a wide array of working knowledge and experience from both the president’s Cabinet and Capitol Hill for the benefit of The Picard Group, which will be of great value during the congressional earmark moratorium,” says Picard. Springfield has 17 years of experience in federal and state policy, including work in the U.S. House and Senate and for two presidential administrations. Most recently she served as senior adviser in the Office of Global Health Affairs, which is under Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius.
Read more about The Picard Group in the next issue of ABiz, which hits newsstands Feb. 23.
MAY 22 This post was written the day after the second line shooting in NOLA, by Brentin Mock. Mock is a friend of Deb "Big Red" Cotton, a blogger who was shot in the back and was seriously injured. It is a raw, emotional piece of writing, something the writer obviously felt he needed to get off his chest. But it raises questions that can't be easily dismissed, and might give some insight into where the source of these events truly is.
MAY 22 In this Baton Rouge Business Report post, Rolfe McCollister considers the privatization of bus service in Baton Rouge. After decades of under-funding, it is a mess, and although a tax (partially) passed last year, improvement hasn't happened yet. McCollister apparently feels it is time to let private business get in on the transit business.
MAY 22 This post on Bayou Buzz by Jeff Crouere urges the defeat of a bill that would grant modest pay increases over the next several years to the state's judges and clerks of court. The state is in no position to fund pay hikes, Crouere argues, with the pay increases costing a total of $9 million over several years. It sends the wrong message to the (proverbial) hard-working people of Louisiana, he says.
MAY 22 The Advocate reports here that State Treasurer John Kennedy is complaining about a meeting of the corporation that oversees the state's tobacco settlement. The Governor wanted it restructured, and he has some support, but not a lot. The corporation agreed with his plan, but Kennedy didn't, and it appears that the meeting was noticed in a manner completely different than that of all previous meetings. Kennedy's given to hyperbole, but in this case the fish don't smell too fresh.
MAY 22 In this Advocate story, Carencro Police Chief Carlos Stout says the recent federal indictment of a strip club owner is all wrong. The indictment alleges that drugs and prostitution went on with impunity because club staff made arrangements with "local" police. Stout says it never happened, and while his cops do work security in the parking lot, they're not allowed inside.
MAY 22 This amusing post in DIG Baton Rouge recounts an ad that ran on Craig's List recently; the advertiser was seeking tenants for a Beauregard Town house. He knew his market, and wrote an ad that the most ironical hipster couldn't resist. Apparently, he really did know his market, because the ad worked like a charm.
MAY 22 In this post in The Lens, Mark Moseley comments on the rhetoric Gov. Jindal employed in trying to save his tax "reform" package. One interesting point concerns Jindal's use of his brother, Nikesh, in a little story. Nikesh left Louisiana because of his inability to get a decent job, the story goes, but the story won't hold water: Nikesh lives in DC, which has an income tax level comparable to Louisiana, Moseley says. If income taxes caused the dismal situation, it should exist in DC too. Right?
MAY 22 This post by columnist John Maginnis traces the trajectory of the bill that would fund construction at community and technical colleges -- and bypass the Board of Regents and traditional higher ed funding mechanisms. Sure, it will bust the legislature's self-imposed debt limit, but some leges feel that there's more need (because there is more growth) in the community and technical college area than in the university area, he says.
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.