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Jim Gossen  Good Steward and Ambassador for Gulf Seafood Industry

Discover Lafayette

57:22 min | 1 year ago

Jim Gossen Good Steward and Ambassador for Gulf Seafood Industry

"This is John Swift and you're listening to discover Lafayette a podcast dedicated to the personal touch of a community bank please visit Iberia Bank Dot Com for more information our guest today is Lafayette Native Jim Goson southern living's heroes of the new South awards and is one of Cooking Lights Twenty Food Heroes in America today we get to learn about the importance of the Gulf seafood industry and how important it is to our culture in lifestyle jim welcome discover Lafayette here and Being Lafayette I know I know so are solutions dot com I'd like to also thank Iberia Bank for its support of discover Lafayette founded in eighteen eighty seven Iberia Bank is the largest bank aboard until his recent retirement. Jim is a recipient of the Environmental Protection Agency's Gulf Guardian Award my tables legends of the industry based in Louisiana and is headquartered right here in Lafayette with three hundred twenty five combined locations throughout the south they offer the resources of a national bank with the president of the Board of the Gulf Seafood Foundation Gem is an industry leader for the recovery and improved sustainability of the Gulf of Mexico seafood industry little disclaimer. We are neighbors you also live in Houston but we live right by the oil center and it's kind of a block forgotten so chance for businesses of all sizes raiders motto. Is You just want it to work we understand if you're wondering if writer can help your business please visit rate his career in the restaurant seafood processing manufacturing and distribution business began in one thousand nine hundred seventy two when he began selling Gulf seafood out of a pickup Oregon city and I was asked about similar landry's to go check on a restaurant that was up police in Morgan city this was the genesis of the business that would turn into Louisiana foods a global seafood purveyor that he sold the Cisco in two thousand twelve and we're where he served as chairman eighteen seventy five and let's back up from there because I want to get you to talk a little bit when you started and the reason I mentioned in the intro about the hard and of course been Houston forty something years I moved there at seventy five yeah you've got a fascinating history in it did I went and looked at the building it was seven hundred fifty dollars off back then oh gosh and Don Landry said well if you and I had no intention to get back into that worked in high school and College should dawn seafood downtown and really didn't have the attention to go into the rest for businesses Oh yeah in fact about my dad's house after he died from the family and spending more time here now that I'm semi re- nineteen th I moved to Morgan City I think I was twenty three and then by the time we open I just turned twenty four and moved to Houston and art right here though you graduated from U. L. U. S. L. Yes for you nineteen seventy-one and I was working in in and out pickup truck you were actually delivering you were picking up buying and picking up and delivering Gulf seafood right to make this high quality come and work with you could have stop well that changed everything yeah maybe you be interested in trump is she got into that and and basically two things shrimp and red snapper and we would sell ourselves we had a little company we call Oh creole foods and we would sell to some of the other dawns and just pick it up at the dock and go run into the restaurant and in my little better price and to be able to go pick out what we wanted on the dock and of course when we moved to Houston we realized to be able to get that so you brought Louisiana seafood than when you moved to Houston I mean that you were really bringing in Louisiana bringing in fact we were the first and other things that we we changed the name from Creole Food Sy- Louisiana boots can you didn't know what Creole Matt Right Right and so you go twice a week though I mean you really a road warrior yeah a and when we started that we we didn't have any intentions basically what to do crawfish in Houston and boiled crawfish and eight to fe and all that we also brought community coffee there it wasn't Mayor Orleans and down to the mouth of the river picking up oysters box root beer when barks owned it community beans beans yeah and and by being on the truck and looking at what I was buying and of course I've made relationships with people because you're the the floyd still in in in the record business and has floyd's in and around Houston Billy unfortunately died of cancer and when we would pick it up lied Nama French bread I bought a tractor trailer truck in one thousand nine hundred seventy eight and I was driving it myself twice a week back and forth burrows down in I guess gramercy down that area pick up on dewey sausage none of that was available in Houston at the time so you were driving from here but based in Houston you like I said earlier you were really supplying Louisiana Seafood to Texas we were supplied so basically you know catfish frog legs shrimp crab meat raw speckled trout flounder catfish and your company Louisiana Foods because that's really at from what I understand the crux that was your your big business and how did that evolve over the years because you were due today I mean you go to any steakhouse ever crab cake they didn't have that back then you know and they have items that when I first started I had nine items and we had some other partners in some other restaurant but yeah it was reading Magnolia Bar and Grill Jimmy will landry's and Willie Jays yeah yeah the time that part trying to build easy food and of course started with three trucks and I think we had like fifty waitering which we do a lot of oil related catering right right well can you talk about the growth to Houston Texas and to the cowboys they were cowboys they just didn't eat salmon was not available we really when we open the restaurants we really had probably if I do it again I'd have had just one name but looking double its farm race it's consistent you could put it on a menu and you'll know the price is going to be pretty consistent and you know you gotTa have it every day old landrace and Willie g tillman fatigue which now is Landry's and so I spent most of my attack us in fact some of what we did I try to fill up the tractor trailer truck to pay for the freight you know and dimming learning it being on the trucks being salesman so you've seen him at collectors everything you've seen the industry change though because back then guy buying it and you're the guy selling it so see reporters Landry's border to Bill Landry Ford Landry when we first opened up and try to sell to some other my friends in Houston and we in nineteen eighty late eighties we and started producing farm raised salmon we started selling it now probably samant companies number one selling fish in volume wow because it's available and it's a perceived high quality fish yeah healthy right but halibut you we couldn't fly food I mean people didn't eat squid here people didn't eat You know octopus here you know when I grew up you know if I would've tried to sell salmon there to run me out of Houston really well just wasn't available at Kabul was one of the first people to bring in Norwegian salmon sermon me so it was just like not knowing the business just being at it and being involved I know in the eighties there weren't limits right. The industry has changed dramatically they had yeah they didn't have limited probably didn't have the the demand for seafood as the rush that were we would always eat in the past now they're only available to I guess recreational fishermen lied Nama French bread and then of course as you on Dewey sausage and we'd go to back on it but we didn't WanNa have to where we have a chain of where we had to do everything the same each one will want to have a little still have one rush Amino Wild Salmon was not marketed outside of the North West and of course when the Norwegian any kind of new product they will willing to try it and if the consumer bought it that was great keep buying it and before we started go in nature I mean if we couldn't get it on the truck we didn't get it you know pretty much in that time now we can get fish from all over the world if chains this chefs became more competitive with each other and trying to bring in different items in different and if you brought the podcast you brought up something interesting and it brought back memories of delicious dishes that are probably haven't had in a long time you were talking about speckled trout and how some of the fence impacted your business impacted the industry greatly where you know a guy that has adopted buys fish every time he takes had to have the relationship with the people who are buying for right and basically I didn't know what I was doing so I had to learn my way Ed fish after Paul Prom he took an underutilized species that really no one eight I think we sold a million pounds total in the state that away from him you taking Gross revenue away from him and as you take the revenue away from you take his profits away so if he can't it retrospect take it said okay we get allow this much to be harvested for the consumer that dead fish half Jimmy Johns and you're in near the airport in Houston and a catering company with an he sent in Houston Coal Louisiana said we gotTa Stop Commercial Fishing Trout and red fish and which is going to be recreation I remember that yeah and you know which they should have family owned they come into the doctor self they've there and we'd Never Brealey bought when you start getting into selling seafood I guess it was in the eighties they they against concerned that they will overfishing the commercial fisheries overfishing speckled trout of red fish and lacking but he he did a black and red fish more to help an underutilized species and no one could have imagined anything back there the the airlines didn't want anything that could leak on the plane and mess up any other freight that they had so we had the food like we did we need all different sizes shrimp we needed pack to certain way and so we bought from the the processing plant how many there are now how many fishermen especially in the Zenana but these are small businessman that are living pretty much off the land and things the husbands fishing and the wife is running the business let me tell you if the wife didn't like you you didn't get fish really if you didn't pay bill or you didn't do we so mom and pop businesses there no big industrial like the northeast in the northwest and Alaska there's no big big operations is we'll get it they'll I sit down and you'll buy from them and go pick it up well back in God I remember the and that's what the consumer would buy what's been interesting for me getting to know your story jam is that over the years you've become known so you know you can get fish from Australia within a couple of days of being out of the water search it's completely changed and people used to eating all types of oil spill in particular you use established a foundation that was a precursor of the Gulf Seafood Foundation because they were devastated for your conservation efforts for your stewardship of the industry and from what you're saying here this is I don't know collectively they have a voice because people like you but individually they probably don't know how to get the word out when they need help and I know after the beep was driving my mother you say why do you want to do that because I can't get anybody else to do it right I can relate and really it was building business to protect that industry because it evolves tourism boats and all that but they had a bigger lobby have happened that have impacted their livelihoods and I know you've been concerned about protecting and sustaining this industry because a lot of them take off and went worldwide and everybody wanted red fish said it was no control over it and so all of a sudden that's been my not to take away from anything from the recreation Oh that's a big industry and we need it in understand yeah but we also and more more fishing you know recreational fishermen is a big industry and we really need to you know he would maybe run crabs over his doc he was getting speckled trout over his dog he was getting redfish over there they make so much a pound basically the but we have more than just the industry it's a culture of what we have down here in South Louisiana and the Gulf that that started their grandfather was in the business and as it got further along where they had more and more restrictions I remember that I used to lobby back then that was big news they were all over the commercial fisherman I it's all most of the businesses on the Gulf coast not really for aquaculture and I'm involved a little bit with chocolate culture which was an e it's and they had everything either way you buy Peo- shrimp or head on trip or a certain size certain counts oh so I mean I used to run up and down from Naples to Brownsville on the Gulf coast and it's all the same it's it's small family businesses easier thing to start because you can't there's nothing you could find negative about growing oysters an uncle culture when you use that term you're talking about farm like fish would be willing to pay so I know that you believe that I know that most of the Fishman aren't paid much and if we want to eat our own food own grown food we have to think about we can't just keep and I'm sure they they heard every year with less and less shrimp with all that fresh water they came down to Mississippi which there's really no way to in the commercial and I always thought well you know we have to keep enough seafood for people to be able to what they have and the importance of this local industry you know yeah I mean it's tough to compete tough to compete go to supply the demand worldwide we don't have enough fish we don't have any big processing plants other than shrimp I mean most of them are just trying to make a living yeah they don't have time to go it's not like a company big enough to have a lobbyist she really ran the benching without their normally doing You know everybody. Most of the shrimp boats are fast trump from Bahia Ecuador we by Ecuador in trump. You know we by Indian shrimp we so I don't think it would hurt our fishery that we had aquaculture would just make it more valuable because some people that appreciate while caught assisted living you because believe you me if you don't have a lobbyist you not represented the last person represented and look at it differently and also by growing our own seafood and helping the fishermen I had a I was talking to take but if it was not catfish or tranquil trout flounder that would just need it you know with the taste and is it worth more money to buy American products that you know that has certain restrictions on the fishing of it or and they had to have management and but they just shut it down they just shut it down in the lobby was bigger on the recreational side in the fishermen and I've said that we can't compete on price we have to compete on quality so how do we focus on improving our quality of what we can ah treating a product like it's a premium product not trying to compete on price because we'll never compete with China can just keep lowering the price so we have to attenuating to do what we've been doing right and whether it's going to be offshore aquaculture we were not beaten salmon today if there was an aquaculture because watch whether it be slow you know less drag times in the Gulf or you're putting less sulfites on anything area Louisiana Shrimp Alabama sure if it's all go shrimp but maybe we need to rethink of how we promote our American made products by Chinese shrimp not saying where it's coming from and I don't think we have enough money to be able to promote every little if you go into a store and it's not your plate of of while Sam not forty dollars you're not eating real while salmon it's just expensive hey see the value in not trying to see how much they can push the price down to the fishermen they go back to them and like for typical but that read this anyway Jim if you can explain it that as an industry it would behoove them to market like markets farm-raised where it's controlled we wouldn't be eating seafood today pretty much if it was not far away we don't have enough shrimp oughta proud of and say wow by this but it has to be able to get more money and because if the fishermen don't make a living up if they don't see that they can make a living being fishermen they're just not going to do it and I know that historically it's been like you said family oh I don't want to buy food from China and I know a lot of a lot of the commercial fisherman a day and nobody up the chain makes it then you just sell in the same thing everybody else is share and you lose the culture in nine pruitt runs passion one of the owners of passion New Orleans he sees the value of what do you need to make a living then it's up to me I work with you L. on Jeff's Dr Stewart on they're they're doing a study now and I said you know I really thought that we needed to sell it and that's what I've been trying to do for years you have to be able to sell it if I can't sell it then it doesn't do anybody any good but I have to be able to get in in New Orleans and the John Bash's grouping and donald links group then eat if they just want to go buy it at a grocery strike me if you don't a boat you shouldn't be penalized if you WANNA eat red snapper so consume them or you can't ship Oh so you know so if they if they put it in a cooler within one hour then they can get tagged moat Gulf seafood but I said we really need to promote American seafood because then we can have more people chip in to help promote it because we don't buy it's not that I wouldn't is just that China is a big producer top Lia will you would think that till oppy wood because they had no refrigeration now in the summertime they have refrigerated is on the boats they have to be in a refrigerator within one hour of catch are you the countries become more prosperous the people will be able to buy their product and eventually may not be able to get anything from China or India is when you can't let's say you use a sixteen twenty count shrimp and you can't get a golf sixteen twenty cow trump and this restaurants if you sell crawfish that imported you have to specify that or shrimp that's imported you have to specify that all demand for seafood as I look at it I look at you I'm not a big fan I don't eat it but so there's a new breed of fishermen it's young people and it's really our job as the old guys in the business to make sure they survived but we won't have anything does or do you just want to buy the cheapest and you'll always have both people that WANNA pay premium that's why you have prime meeting if select the people that for the passing it down but this is this is an issue you know passionate down in a lot of them today if their boat wouldn't pass down from their fall though grants this is just for people giving me feedback you know and they have to go to buy shrimp from Ecuador fences then they you know that that that's when market it's not as great for prime but you get into high price right but this is all important if we're going to sustain the industry because if young people coming up he's had these labs now that that testing the water and probably we have the safest seafood we ever had it just that we have a world table to ship so the the seafood is taken care of a lot better than it ever will and it's more cast being done the water all these universities somewhere else not really you know use that would know what happens I know there is a law that was passed that said that seafood in Louisiana it has to be labeled they said don't buy that you know there's local and it costs it costs more but I bought it about the yeah the one that was local but the name on the Chinese crawfish two fits foreign is that right like from China will Shrimp not yeah shrimp in crawfish if fish I think it was last year and it was called Boudreaux's or something but it was Chinese and I was at trump pines one of our local are Dros yes they started peeling or selling small across fish will you can't fool people I mean and if people don't see a value difference if it's not something that they noticeably nays you can't force people to spend more money the price would go down but it keeps going up because the people in China buying more so as the the aww they couldn't afford to buy a boat and pay for it for what they catch you know they like the Dickie Brennan's Groupie because the people will be having more money by they own product if we don't produce it here you know I've here where we could buy everything a- as I see it's changing but you know the crawfish meat in a pack the Chinese sold it is people and rich culture of Lafayette the gateway to South Louisiana we record in the offices of Raider solutions which offers a complete fleet of it solution a hundred count eighty count of one hundred now we just sell it as a pack of Louisiana crawfish and just because it says it on the pancakes by law and that's FDA law and you have to look closely some time so I was trying to buy cross in restaurants the two different if you go into Costco or rouse's or any major or eighty grocery store you have to have they call it cool country of origin label official I want and I'm in town crawfish out called frank and but it costs more you might be getting twenty percent year where big crawfish occasioning Kinda mis- misleading you know and it it's amazing that the FDA let them do that but you know the bottom line is I mean you shouldn't be able to hide which eating is that just in restaurants cameras any seafood you purchase like Costco let's say if you Ko and is you have a pound or crawfish if it's this is a rice you don't WanNa buy now so I'll go back to like sue by like Frank Randall. He peels big prevented it just happened I mean what do we do about it now and its impact all of crabbers life shrimpers oyster people the now I know that the health department's been going out finding that are are and I really believe everybody should know whatever they eating you're getting fourteen a twelve percent because they're big claws big shells and having that whole experience yeah it's just it's it's menu and I know a lot of people that were you far against it I mean I think everyone should have the right to know where the eating and the problem exists analogy play apart any of this yeah I mean technology plays supported to like the old saying where you don't eat issues in our months will oh that's a good thing we have to produce a better product when the Swedes came in and bought all our big crawfish years ago they've taken out all the big one weather can seafood normally can seafood like you buy from Spain is the highest quality sardines very are really yeah they the best one if he says if it's would olive all you can be sure it's high-quality saw dean but assures the dolphins and turtles in the the freshwater was causing them their eyes were affected and it pitted their skin and they perished advocating for the fishermen and we have a great group of people and it has many organizations we're just one of them but well I was looking at some went through some news stories and that's when the freshwater was being flooded you know affecting a lot of the wildlife and they should we see that the issues that these fishermen have and we could tell all we can do is tell the story and hope that semi listens right and it's like they have such a small volley individual one thinks of their problem I mean it's you know ears and a half weather but yes I'm very active I of I really see that that without people we're ready to tell the story if the story needs to be toll we were the ones that came out and got DVD exco they helped peel the crawfish shucked oysters were they gotta pay them whether they have product or not right so somebody should and you could go and open up and eat some fresh crawfish tails out of a can be delicious but we have to change the way we marketing things and and get the most for the product rather than trying to compete with Chinese crawfish. I mean so you're active I mean you know you retired from Cisco is Shane Ears and you'll Smith and Eddie chows and all this group of the doctor you do and once we lose that I think we'll lose something very special you know it's something that I don't WanNa live without right I don't either this past book we didn't know if it if if the federal government would do it were we knew that hey look you do this for the farmer what about our guys it's you know you have flood insurance right if you house floods you get somebody that's why you have insurance but the fishermen no have any of that Senate governor and and we have several organizations to declare a national emergency for the seafood industry there has never been done before Ed to the wildlife and what you're saying is very thought provoking well I mean it's very important he this going on live questions I want to get you to discuss so I know that one of the things you've been lauded for is working with chefs to so we just don't have the the big companies to be able to and so that's why it takes guys like me and frank and you know all and you know surviving in many cases so this is actually worked out pretty well there ride figured made people aware that we have so many in those kind of things we saw too after the BP oil spill and I know that people thought about the fishermen but not in the same way I think is it'd be responsible even though it's a it's a manmade thing it's not a man made thing it's a it's a God created act but you know red snapper my company bought one fifth of the whole Gulf quota for red snapper which or a triple tail all these different fish where you might catch two hundred pounds of it it's not enough to market it it's not like you have a Lotta quota I for one company to be able to purchase a million pounds of the five and a half million at the time and and that at least we can preserve the coach and because the culture is on all along the Gulf coast fisherman don and there used to be I guess a lot of ways because you said that those fish they don't survive if they've been caught you can't really release them and have them whatever but there is a market for everything when you travel the world you see that the different people in different parts of the country use the by-catch like when fishermen are out in the water they catch other fish and other seafood as they're pulling their net you know so things have changed we've had a speed of the microwaves microwave remember when we didn't even Oh yeah eh they can't afford to lose a crop they have a lot of them have to be labor they bring them in for Mexico and then they go back to me I'm very active my wife got sick retired in and probably that Thank God every day that I was able to do that and spend the last we don't have a lot of fish on there where a company can say well we have all this wild fish so it was very important will if this is edible and any wonderful fish in the ocean that no one eats they never had to didn't know about it there's no reason to when you get all of the speckled trout you want it back from the consumer and say well you know we can't sell it it's you know it's either too strong taste took things die I mean you know fish die in the Oh you just never see it right and so it's not something that you would say well we have to think out at different than we did than our grandparents did it was an abundance we didn't have the demand we have today everybody Russian also shifting gears a little bit about always tres I know read some articles you were working with a fellow that was thinking about getting out of the industry a miracle weight sink in water rights but yeah the microwave was slow to their milk in every part of the fifth we're the only ones that take the fillets throw the rest of the way and it's interesting yeah I remember years all the the Sh- redfish you wanted all the snappy wanted but I mean we have so many so much fish that we'd never had to target and then and I know there was a study done that people like oysters to be a certain size like the average person can you talk about that you know this is about seven eight years ago I believe it is my thing eats offer something else and but if we want to have a seafood industry but you ate all this it's putting pressure on the the other of the seafood of course there was no fishery for let's say at one time you will be catching snapper in You get Kenji trigger fish it gave me pause because I didn't know what Kobe was her trigger fish you know it's really up to the restaurant parrot and to get the that's-that's using everything and my my whole thought was that if your stomach full and you only ate a portion of this other type stuff this is delicious fish that go beyond all these different fish that no one really had ever had the eat but I've seen these on menus only when they float up ashore but most fish that die in the ocean they eat and butts up melts predators and and stack them up and steam them and then take the bums out all the meat and it was the best tasting fish we'd call it a fish stew you know but has instant demand for everything they want I heard this young young college purchased the play their microwaves slow I said wow I mean yes maybe you go to the old fashioned oyster bars yes you go to Abigail and they'll want you can't serve the little oysters ago in Morgan City we had the we get catfish and we'd fillet it and we would take the the bones and lay it in a pot on it and he said you know I'm I'm not making any money I just don't see the volume of washes at my grandfather and my dad so I took him to see bill and you know it's it's like you're looking up at a bird on the wire and it falls out and he dies well you never see you think that's in my shoes because of the you know levies and what have you so all our our estuaries a different today and that's one of the good things about it they did about seventeen men and they tom with tongues and they would send a thousand sacks every other day to New Orleans from there bluefield employees with that and they were trying to use everything and some of the people would cut details off and fry them but I'm in Alabama they had one farm which it's called a AILSA alternative oyster culture and it's basically taking a c you can you can control it I think better than just wild fish right right that's interesting well The chefs want when I grew up people eight before in choice shore they didn't need it they didn't want a small oyster but now the tastes have changed from groups whether it's magazines or government agencies where do you see like how do you see things in general the the upper scale restaurants upper and they're they're warning it for two reasons that's what the consumer wants and they want offing over the next five to ten years do you anticipate more big changes in your industry I think we're GONNA see changes at I'm really hoping for some of these awards you got Jim I understand now I mean you have been a guardian of the industry and you've been recognized by so many lead auster that's grown in a lab and put it out in the wild in a cage whether it be floating or on the bottom and growing it out to the size we'll get a release in a in permits from that while wildlife and fisheries and also from the corps of Engineers and and you know that's one of the things about aquaculture the people like myself and the wholesalers and the the big seafood company if we want it we've got to help them survive we can't just say they're not looking for big profits they're looking to feed their family and raise their kids and that's that's that's I just don't see the volume of voice he has about a seventy foot steel hoist your boat it took a crew of three and three hundred dollars worth

Lafayette Jim Goson Gulf Seafood Foundation Gem Gulf of Mexico Iberia Bank Louisiana Gulf Iberia Bank Dot Com Houston Environmental Protection Agenc trump John Swift America Nama French writer president of the Board Ecuador Spain federal government
Oil and Gas Industry Veteran Mark Miller On the Collapse of Energy Prices

Discover Lafayette

25:44 min | 1 year ago

Oil and Gas Industry Veteran Mark Miller On the Collapse of Energy Prices

"This is John Swift and you're listening to discover Lafayette podcast dedicated to the people and rich culture of Lafayette the gateway to South Louisiana. We tape in the offices of Raider a hands on. It service provider that integrates all of your needs for advanced technical support. Effective communication options in cybersecurity raiders motto. Is You just wanted to work? We understand please. Visit Raiders Solutions Dot Com for more information. I'd like to thank Iberia. Bank our premier sponsor. They support our community in so many ways and their dynamic team is committed to serving the banking needs of clients in this region and throughout the southeastern United States. Iberia Bank offers the resources of a national bank with the personal touch of a community bank. Please visit Iberia Bank Dot Com for more information the generosity of Lafayette General Health. Also makes this podcast possible and we thank them for. Being a premier sponsor as Acadian is largest nonprofit regional health system. Lafayette General Health is committed to restoring maintaining and improving health in the communities. It serves for more information visit. Lafayette General Dot Com. Our guest today is mark. Miller president of Merlin oil and Gas Lafayette Mark has thirty eight years of experience. In the field of petroleum land management. He serves on the National Petroleum Council in Washington. Dc Marcus made a name for himself in the oil and gas industry serving as president of the Independent Petroleum Association of America and the Lafayette Association of Petroleum Landman. He also serves on the board of the Louisiana Oil and Gas Association Mark Miller welcome to discover. Lafayette thank you Jan. And May I say welcome for the second time I've taping us in my home study and you your good friend from our church. Asbury United Methodist. And you're also a good front for learning with me as I'm adjusting to the the Cova nineteen pandemic you know in taping this show at home so thank you. Well I guess so you know I wanted to get you on the show. Mark it really. I was I guess inspired by and also frightened by an article. You sent me About the oil collapse. That was written a few days ago. And I thought it'd be timely for us to talk about the oil and gas business not only in Louisiana but worldwide. So before we start that. Would you please give us your background? I know you've got thirty years of experience and you moved here after college if you could talk about that. I sure I moved down here and went to work in the oil business. And nineteen eighty eighty one and have been working as a landman ever since nineteen eighty one at Become a home and I love it and while I travel back and forth. This is definitely my home right. So what brought you till Louisiana though to begin wet well I wanted to get into business? I had some friends in the oil and gas business and they were told me that it was exciting and as a young person there was a world of opportunity. And that's why I came right so you moved here right out of college and I do have to point out that I moved here in. Nineteen eighty-three after law school and everything was really good. And then within just a short time we had a huge crash in the oil business in Louisiana and you survived that nineteen eighty. Six was a tough time. My partner showing badly myself really hunkered down and we would play little games with each other such as I would buy lunch one day. I'll he would my lunch the next day out so we can tell our to our wives. We didn't buy lunch every day. But we We managed to to get through it. It was a tough time price. Oil fell drastically down eight dollars a barrel but it but it did rebound and we managed to stay in the business did an earlier podcast early in. The show's tenure. With Charlie Goodson of Charlie. Jeez and he told me how he and Kim Veron would charged for launch with the price of a barrel of oil was. I remember those days and we're laughing about it but you know they were tough times and you. You made it and that's kind of indicative of our whole community. I think in South Louisiana and Acadia. We have a wildcatter mentality and people keep on going even when the going tough. But we're really facing tough times today. Aren't we well? There's no question? This is a serious time. An issue for the oil and gas industry especially a K. Deanna Brought on by some other factors besides this crooner nineteen virus ride It seems like just a couple of months ago when people would speak about problems. Oil and gas industry had they were talking about the legacy lawsuits and policy related. Things and I know that seems like a long time ago but would touch on out of your thoughts about Louisiana in. What are you know what our hopes for the future once we get through this if we continue with the current policies? You know so. I was speaking with a gentleman. Yesterday's chairman of Independent Oil Company. And we were talking but he's just been involved in a legacy lawsuit and he was musing on the phone. Saying you know I have a chance to work in Texas or Oklahoma and this was prior to see nineteen. Of course he said but I I would not choose to come back to Louisiana with the coastal lawsuits. And so that's part of the problem. Our new business in the last few years has declined because people were afraid to come here and now coupled with this pandemic our business. What's left of? It's getting squeezed from all sides. And you've chosen to stay here and now you tell me that most of your work and your investments are in this area if you could expand on that. My career has been primarily in the Gulf coast area in production. I have is a fifty mile radius from Lafayette. And that's where I I've made my living and continue to do so right now. It seems that there's no demand for fossil fuels and I wanna read a sentence from the article you sent me and I want to quote the author. It's Daniel Uragan. Who wrote in foreign affairs in this article that I referenced that she sent me? But he's saying that The price war with producing nations battling for market share has become lodged in the larger crisis of the novel current virus pandemic and we'll be the worst recession since World War. Two the resulting collapse in demand will be bigger than any recorded since oil became a global commodity commodity. Oil prices are already down two thirds since the beginning of two thousand twenty and still falling. How can that be so fast? It is like I said we in Acadian Louisiana. We already had legacy hanging over us. And then the price of oil has continued to collapse. both the Saudis and the Russians are taking advantage of the fact that they would like to increase their market share not some of the shale producers out of being able to do what they do so well making us energy independent and providing us with the platform well with the slide in oil prices show plays or not economical at anything below forty five dollars a barrel or forty two dollars a barrel depending on where it is so companies are taking breath and saying. Can we drill at these prices or do we not do anything to we? Just put it on the shelf right now and depending on where you drill. I guess what price of oil has to bring varies to make you profitable if you can touch on that. It's true I mean the also around ten dollars a barrel in the Permian. Some people are still able to make money eight dollars in the box and some people are still make money. Because of their long term term investment in resources they put out there lower lease operating costs ins on their infrastructure. But I think it's fair to say that everybody is hurting because of these prices and the real problem is you and I have discussed before is that we got so much oil on the market and no place to send it for sale. It's stuck and stranded in We're calling in a contraction situation Demand contraction but in fact. It's just demand contraction an oversupply so. I didn't realize until I read this article by Yorgen that there was an OPEC. Plus if I'm pronouncing that right I knew about OPEC nations getting together to you. Know kind of as as mutually beneficial to look at the output that each country will commit to but this has fallen apart to right this second. Opec. Plus Ev rings our part. Absolutely everybody's trying to figure out what to do. In the midst of this crisis and the the OPEC countries that were pretty strategically aligned. For many many years fell apart Back in two thousand fourteen and have had trouble getting back together so then they realigned and now they're fractionation because nobody really understands what to do and of course Saudis. The leader wow. They are heavily dependent on oil and gas. Obviously that's what they do and and their economies addicted to it their social their social programs are very expensive and when they sold well lower prices. They're not able to fund those programs for their people. So I'm sure they're getting pushback back. But they are the swing. The swing country in terms of they have more flexibility to ramp up the production. Two million barrels a day unlike any other country in the world and I'm sure the Saudis want to be on good terms with both Russia and the US attorney. Yeah Yeah so in that same article. What really got me was. It's possible that a barrel of oil could be valued at zero. And that's because of the glut that's on the market and the declining storage capacity. Now what what's that about well in in that? Think about this. You Go and you spend your capital dollars. You get together. You drill an oil. Well it successful. It's producing it's creating revenue for not just the company that's producing it but also the landowners because they get their share the royalty from the oil and gas lease it matriculated down to many many people in our community and all of a sudden. Your product is devalued to the point where you can't sell it you can't give it away so you're faced with shutting in the wells and shutting into production and if you do that you run the risk that someone else will not be easily turn back on if you will win. The prices. Go back up. They'll require workover and maintenance after having sat there for sometimes gas wells are usually Less of a problem depending on the particular wells themselves so it's not just a light switch like we're used to it's going to it's going to require some startup time. Less money was crying. You know back in the seventies. When I was in high school I remember waiting in line to get gas and sometimes you couldn't get it and we were energy dependent in those days and I know that through the years now. The United States become a bigger exporter of sealed in an importer. And this could turn around on a dime. And that's when the reasons we're here is because when we were able to pass the oil export Through Congress we're able to begin selling overseas in two thousand fifteen then we were able to to compete on the world market. We weren't just having to consume the oil within our shores so that was a very important move for country and our our strategic independence but it's also led to Saudi Arabia and Russia. Eyeing and say we don't want them to have that much control. We don't want them to be the powerful in the world market and that some retaliation. We're feeling now in my opinion right and I know in this latest stimulus package. That was two point two trillion. Many people thought that the oil and gas industry was left out because there was no money putting on to buy up some of these Access oil products. Right is that that's correct. We are able to you know we are going to the other store. Oil in the strategic petroleum reserves one of which is that weeks island not very far from us there are others nearby but the problem with that is not everybody will be able to take advantage of that not all companies are have the capacity or the means logistically to get the oil there in a timely fashion. And frankly there's enough storage space to to cover the billion barrels oil that are flooding the market. So it it. It's a good stuff in the right direction. But it's not going to solve the entire problem right right. I wish there was some magic bullet. I'd like to pause there if you don't mind I'd like to Take a moment for discover Lafayette's passed. I WANNA get into this to some policy initiatives. You think might be able to help at least take the sting out of some of the market issues but first let me thank premier sponsor Raleigh Marketing for sponsoring a new addition to our podcast discover Lafayette's past rally. Marketing is a full service digital marketing agency. That can assist you. With marketing. Automation content development search engine optimization are just show you how to use social media to turn into a moneymaker for your business. Our friends at Raleigh marketing are there to help you navigate the maze of all the latest ways to market online effectively. For more information please visit rally marketing DOT com. And now the moment. Maurice Hyman was a successful merchant and investor in real estate. His interest in real estate was spurred by his young friend and architect a Hays Town. Who Many of you are familiar with. As a residential architect but towns first career was in commercial development in nineteen twenty. Six town graduated in architecture from Tulane University and had written a thesis on the development of a second business district separate from downtown in Lafayette. He proposed the site to be located on the Gerard. Property located east of the university campus and extending to Pin Hook Road town presented. His thoughts to Maurice. Hyman in. Maurice saw the wisdom in this proposition. Within ten years by nineteen thirty six maurice purchased all the Girard Lands piece by piece from the family. Our Future as an oil center was set in stone and as an aside a town design. Maurice's family home on the Lancy purchased which is now the site of the Alumni House on Saint Mary Boulevard. That was built in one thousand nine hundred thirty six from that point on a hays town designed every building which Maurice hyman constructed so that's discover Lafayette's past and mark. I think you've spent a few hours in the petroleum club. Have you done a few times? Have been there a few times and I must say that You know Mr Hyland's vision when it came to the business was pretty phenomenal. Back in those days in the fifties sixties and seventies when you worked for Gulf oil. And you're trying to make a deal with somebody at Unbeliever Texaco. You literally walked across the street or next door and the oil center and said let's go to lunch and talk this over and then you might go out and compete against each other buying leases. But by night you were over there patting each other on the back and there's a lot of combranch back to something that we all miss but it makes me smile and think about it. It was a different day but I mean it was a different time post World War. Two and I think everybody was just experiencing You know for the first time in decades the ability to make some money in Lafayette certainly attracted them. And we still. Do you know even with the oil and gas issues. I know that we're still attracting entrepreneurs and so it's my hope that through some of this mark there might be some new technologies that are developed in combination with our new IT sector. That's moving in and perhaps some of these issues on the price of drilling for oil. You can be Enhanced that's my hope. So and I agree and I I must shout out to the people of Acadian. Ah In their indefatigable spirit and ingenuity that they export all around the world in terms of oil and gas and and the slides into other businesses as well. Which is what you're suggesting so we do have a very entrepreneurial spirit here and we will make something out of this Janna also wanted to say that it's important for most people think your listeners would be interested in the fact that independence like Badger oil and Mac energy here in town. Still Jill Eighty three percent of the oil wells in the United States and ninety percent of natural gas wells if not all the Exxon's and they Chevrons that drill the wells. The independence still make up the drilling of most new wells so important to remember that as we go forward you know. I just assumed it was the excellent and the shells there deepwater drilling and are those older production sites. Well those are. Those are big capital items. I guess I should have said Onshore USA onshore. So I'm probably misspoken but the independence or the guys that really keep keep the oil in the top and they're obviously the ones that are going to be hurt as much as the rest of the country and the big oil companies world. We're going to be hurt bonus so you would ask about some ideas to to help us and I had a couple of those that you don't know what are some policy. Are just anything that you think happens during well. I know the Mineral Board. As recently as last week was discussing looking at state leases in talking about loyalty relieve so a reduction in the royalty. That's paid to the state on a state lease would help the people that are producing almost leases most which are older releases except maybe in the Hanes Ville Shale. They're fairly new. So royalty look relief on those leases would would help the oil company in the short term with these decline the huge decline in prices. And the other thing and I I was able to testify in front of the Senate and the House about two weeks ago. The budget for this year for Louisiana was based on sixty one dollar oil obviously with oil West Texas Intermediate Trading at twenty four dollars a barrel and Louisiana light at twenty two dollars a barrel today. We're way off that mark so one of the things I was suggesting was if the legislature would forgive consider forgiving for a short period of time. perhaps six months to start with the severance taxes that we pay on oil and natural gas again leading the companies survive through this terrible collapse as we addressed in the opening for this interview. We need a little time and breathing room to get through this about at the federal level. Mark you've mentioned to me that Do we have import taxes on an oil like we do not and it has been bandied about it recently. As last Friday at the White House there were several oilmen that went out there and discuss that It's the large independent really. Pushed it stronger than the majors because the majors have ties around the world in other markets as well so the independence have been talking about that for very long time and trying to protect the people at home and it hasn't really caught fire and the way it might but the discussion still going on and there's several. Us senators such as Kevin Kramer. That's supporting that idea as well with letters to the president so. I'm sure it's on the president's desk asking him to give it some thought about our senators. I think Senator Kathy's embrace part of it as well I. I've not read everything that sort of Kennedy said about it and Senator Kennedy. But they know what's at stake in Louisiana and they know that I'm sure they're doing everything they can to help us in regard to helping our industry as president trump supportive of all of it. Land Gas industry absolutely. He has been a tremendous supporter. Helped in a Lotta ways of curtailing duplicity duplicitous regulations and and some problems that we've had but of course this this oil price and the pandemic who could have seen this coming right. Well how many independence do we have left here? Mark Not a hard number. It is that basically the the group of producers that are here in. Lafayette in South Louisiana. Yeah they're they're not many left Most all the major will all the major oil companies did without we have Petra quest is still. Here is a public company course. Stone left a couple of years ago. So we do not have Any big big companies here today certainly each and every once extremely important as I said what they all contribute to finding on gas and keeping us in the mix so but we have lost a lot of the big companies who've relocated to Houston or Dallas or elsewhere and a lot of our residents are working elsewhere. And they keep their homes here. I make sure that's true People at work here that her chilies husband works over in Texas and he's gone to two weeks and then comes back for week. So they're they're traveling and they're working hard to keep the business alive because there's money back here in Louisiana right have I asked You What she thought we discuss. Are there any topics that we need to touch on? I think that's it. I think that the state legislature needs to realize that this is unlike anything we've ever seen before and the oil and gas business that feeds our families and puts her kids You know through school and and everything that contributes to our our welfare here in this town No matter who you are is important. Industry needs to remain viable so anything that can be done to help the oil and gas industry. We're all asking. Please do it now. Don't wait til later. Yeah I know I second that and I want to thank you. Mark Miller for taking the time to work with me on this podcast and to share your information and again your With Merlin Oil and gas if people WANNA know more about you and I'll put all that on my show notes on my website. Discover Lafayette but I wanNA thank you for sharing your thoughts and we're talking about it. I want to thank our legislators for the work. They've done and looks like they're gonNa have a lot of work to do to balance our budget given the price of a barrel of oil at this point so about a lot. It's really an interesting time. I'd like to second that they're doing a Yeoman's job over there. Some of them are doing it from afar but they're all giving their time and effort on our behalf. So thank you all of them. That's right and also like to thank inclosing Jason Sikora Raider. Who will be mixing this podcast tape as well as Raider Iberia Bank and Lafayette General Health for their support. We're also grateful for our premier partnership with Rowling Marketing. Please subscribe to discover Lafayette by going to your podcast. App On your phone are you can find all of our podcast on the web and discover back yet. Thank you for listening and please stay safe this chance wet.

Lafayette Louisiana Mark Miller Lafayette United States Lafayette General Health South Louisiana OPEC Maurice Hyman president Independent Oil Company Merlin Oil Iberia Bank Dot Com National Petroleum Council
Innovate South: Fostering Lafayettes Entrepreneurial Ecosystem

Discover Lafayette

42:32 min | 1 year ago

Innovate South: Fostering Lafayettes Entrepreneurial Ecosystem

"This is John Swift and you're listening to discover laughing at a podcast dedicated to the people and Rich Culture Lafayette's the gateway to sell Boise on which type in the offices of writer solutions located in the light center in Lafayette Raider offers a complete fleet of it solutions for businesses of all sizes. If you're wondering if writer can help your business please. Visit Raider Solutions Dot Com. I'd also like to thank Iberia Bank for its support founded in eighteen eighty seven Iberia. Bank is the largest bank based in Louisiana and is headquartered in Lafayette with the three hundred twenty five combined locations throughout the south. They offer the resources of National Bank. With the personal touch of a community bank please visit Iberia Bank Dot Com for more information and lastly thank you for the support of Lafayette General Health as a Katy. Anna's largest nonprofit community on regional health system Lafayette General Health is committed to restoring maintaining and improving health in the communities. It serves for more information visit. Lafayette General Dot com the focus of our show today is the innovate South Conference. which is taking place November? Thirteen th through fifteen th two thousand nineteen entrepreneurs startup founders and small business owners. From from all over the Gulf south will come together to learn share and celebrate innovative best practices in Business and marketing. The event is organized by the opportunity machine. Discussing this with us are destined to go and Rodney Hess. Dustin article is director of the opportunity machine where he has worked with more than seventy startup group companies. He earned a bachelor's degree in visual arts with a concentration in graphic design and a master's degree with a concentration in public relations from you L.. Lafayette it Rodney has is also you Lafayette Grad in creative writing and serves as vice president of rally. Marketing Rodney has more than twelve years of experience orients in digital marketing and has presented various professional organizations along the Gulf coast. And I do want to say before we start that the opportunity machines mission Kevin is to grow business and entrepreneurship create quality jobs economic diversity and regional prosperity which we all want to see so Rodney Dustin and welcome to discover Lafayette. Yeah so this is the first annual innovate south. We were talking destined before we started the podcast. You've put on various areas programs throughout the last few years. But this is the first major three day conference one night and then two full day conference where you're we're going to be focusing on innovate south. So who wants to start with what's going on you. Want to jump in Azure. Yeah so in the past we've always done or at least for the last three years. We've done an entrepreneur exposition where we really tried to highlight some of our members who are starting up companies and some of the interesting things that they were doing drone technology and Vr and different things like that but we realized that the entrepreneur ecosystem is really starting to grow here in the medical industry the and the tech industry still in Gez Industry. And so we're really trying to make the rest of the Gulf south aware that and then push it to where we have ideas coming in from the rest of the Gulf south to continue to build ideas in the creative and innovative culture. We have already existing in Lafayette VIP. So looking at some of the other things that were going on with Cox business putting on the get started medical pitch competition last year that went really well and then rally Ali Marketing Putting on Social Media Day here in Lafayette and then US doing our entrepreneurial conference we were talking about putting them all together to really make a a bigger impact. Because it's easier for people from all over to come in for a couple of days rather than day here to there to there and then it's also easier to make it a bigger impact and and have it kind of speak to a lot more people you know reach further and the branding can be bigger and everything so we worked on bringing those three events together and that's really what. Innovate South is now is a compilation of those three main events. We have plans going in the future to do a few you other things but we're really trying to test it out this year to see if bringing these three events together is something that the community wants a needs which based on feedback that we Gherardi received. It seems like that's the case and I think that bringing in all the speakers that we have now from all over the country and then also having a strong basis speakers who who were here is going to showcase not only the ideas that we have here but also how when you bring in people from outside the community in and share their the ideas with the people that we have here it starts to create that melting pot culture and you get new ideas from that and it Kinda can stem the growth and in create more quote unquote innovation. Right I mean it's a catalyst in so many ways to Rodney. Your background expertise is really in digital marketing right and so I just want to say from my perspective. As an attorney that kind of came up with legal pads. It's amazing to me how quickly it seems quickly to me Eh. But how different it is in marketing. Your services immediately if you've got the best idea in the world and you don't know how to market yourself are you don't know the right people people to call or connect with your pretty much outta lock. Absolutely I mean in just in the twelve years since I've been doing it I started off doing strictly search engine optimization. Seo You in New Orleans. and Luckily I got into that at the right time because it was still at a time where nobody quite knew that term. What's familiar with it in that timeframe even just changing from then to now has been incredible even changing from last year this year? It's really landscape. Completely changes on a dime so staying on top of all. The latest trends is is really important which is why we like to get involved in things like this. Education is really one of our missions. We put on two free monthly events every single month. Because we really care about really helping coach other people other businesses. Even if they can't come to us for our help we like twit. least bring the help to them. Rally Marketing Louis. Now destined was telling me that you're you know you're assisting with innovate south. You're a sponsor but really your partner her because putting on an event of size destined couldn't do this just on his own so he's brought you in and others to I guess kind of partner to make sure that all of this flows in the way that You want to see it happen. Yeah just based on a work with Social Media Day last year and I've been involved with this since the very beginning kind of started as has an initiative online marketing director. It'd be be are we evolved into this You know day event and rally kind of took it over last year and this this year we were talking about me pushing back a little bit and I reached out to Destin. And that's when he kind of said. Well we're kind of kicking around this idea and I mean I immediately latched onto it Immediately and we came with all the branding we've been doing all the marketing materials for it. So we've been involved since almost the beginning so dustin As I said you're not doing this by yourself. I know this wouldn't be possible without your sponsors. You WanNa talk about some of the people whose generosity is made all this possible. Then we'll get into the lineup of the people. You have speaking absolutely so you know I. I definitely have to say that as far as the partners go you know we have Cox business who is coming in in strong and backing this event. A lot of the production. You'll see a lot a especially with the started medical pitch competition and bringing in all these medical could companies. They're putting up twenty thousand dollars cash prize to help bring in all these medical startups from all over the country who have applied over forty of applied. And we've narrowed it down to eight. Who are GonNa come in and pitch so basically put on this really Nice Shark tank event where we're showcasing all the the medical industry that we have here but also bringing in To kind of introduce them to what we have going on here. So they're putting up twenty thousand dollars cash prize which normally these types of events. There's a lot of strings attached. And so there's a lot of red tape the jump through it becomes more difficult to recruit startups in that way. So if it wasn't for them we wouldn't be able to a event like this specifically when it comes down to get started medical pitch competition so really appreciate all that they've done their they've done. They've jumped through leaps in hoops and gone over upwards. Now it's backwards to show that they may be large private company. That's national but they really want to stress a focus here in Lafayette that they have that they are committed to this community that they believe in this community and they really want to support it and one of the ways that they wanNA support it is through innovation because they see that we have an innovative mindset. The culture here is very innovative. I mean you think about back back in the day of the wildcatter mentality was an oiling. As if you didn't have something that you made it yourself you know and you made it work and it kind of stems from that and you see a Lotta people here coming up with really creative ideas. They may not know how to execute upon those ideas but they know that if they work on hard on it and they continue to stay. They've focused a motivated. Then they'll get there and you don't see that a lot you see a lot of people with ideas and maybe other communities where they have an idea and then as soon as they hit that first roadblock they kinda quit you know and I and I think that really speaks to them and so they're trying to help bring more innovation to this community and of course we have some of our other sponsors who are really Supportive of innovation and entrepreneurship such as Raider Solutions. You know one of our first graduates. Out of the machine. Straighter the Chris. Raider yeah one of the first graduates out of the opportunity machine even before even before I started in the. Om You know he was a part of it and so really happy to have them as a sponsor they believe in what we're doing and I think that a lot of the other sponsors feel the same way because they understand that in order for this community ended grow one of the best ways to grow the community from the ground up. So you're you're fostering the growth from people that are already here to build upon their ideas in your creating opportunities as you're creating wealth within the community by helping the ones that already here grow rather than spending a lot of money to try and bring people from outside the community in right right. I'd I'd like to. I'd like to hear more about the speakers but I if you could tell us some about this medical pitch competition this is really really fascinating to me about. Forty young companies companies applied to do and so so we we searched very for whatever reason startup companies are very difficult to find sometimes and so because they're just all over the place. Yeah they're all over the place they're trying to raise funds and they're kind of you know their their noses is is right up in front of every little thing that they're having to do and sometimes they're not looking out to see what the grand picture is and so it's it's kind of hard to get in front of them sometimes because they're so focused on this one step at the time which is which is great and some of you need to do that but we really spent a Lotta time trying to go out and search for the right companies to bring in and and so we were able to get forty to apply and then we narrowed it down based on where they were at their company. How much funding they had already raised the potential viability ability of what we had to offer as a community to their company and then also the invest ability and the potential growth of that company? He'd like to see them move here. They don't already. They're not based absolutely it's not. It's not a requirement for this specific pitch competition but we've noticed in the the last time whenever we did the the previous pitch competition we had ten companies. Come through as part of the accelerator program and they pitched in two of those companies ended up moving moving their headquarters here. And so if we don't do these things then it makes it more difficult to bring in some of these startups earlier on in there organization where we have more gained from them growing and so bringing these companies in for these competitions makes it a lot easier to showcase what we have here here in Lafayette to offer them. We put them in. We put them in front of the right people. We show them that. There's a potential for investment here that we show them that there's potential for a lot of Vendors clients here and customers and then to be able to test out their products their medical device software in a living lab lab. You could say and we have a great open door policy that you don't see in a lot of other communities where we bring in these companies and CEO's of high level companies as or L. G. H. Acadian companies or willing to open their doors. And sit down meet with them. And we're getting the medical device or the product that they're offering in those people's hands ends and they're giving them direct feedback on that which is very difficult to get From almost any other community. And that's not coming from me. This is coming from medical companies that we've brought in in who have said you have a fantastic open door policy and so that's one of the things that we can get them here. Then we can show them all these things and it makes it much more likely that we we can recruit them and have them start here in Lafayette who judged the initial pool you have people from the OEM or was it the medical community shore so we have some more partners through L. G. H. Cox business you will and the option machine who when we looked through the initial applications nations we vetted them based on certain criteria and then for the actual pitch competition. We have a great panel of judges who are coming from Cox Business L. G. H.. A A number of other medical partners in the community who are going to judge them Based on a similar set of criteria but based on the let's see their team their current team. They're co founders. You know how much experience they have. Or how motivated. They seem the viability of the idea. The Potential Investment Smith the potential size of the market. How how could it help our community? You know a number of those different factors to decide who's going to be the winner of that competition and really at the end of the day. There's a potential for all of these companies to win even even if they don't win the cash prize because these medical partners are looking for companies to invest in and to bring in as part of the fold within our community which a lot of these startups are trying to get and that's ultimately where they're trying to get well seeing Robinson then floats to the top of my mind and LG with their innovation. He's he's one of the judges. I saw his Mug in the lineup. And I thought what a great partnership like you said. Even if you're not selected the contacts the the knowledge the insight to what this community has to offer is just priceless absolutely. Yeah now you've some feedback. You can sit over there. I'm just excited to talk about our speakers that we have. You WanNa go absolutely just for digital marketing del. Let I'll let you know destin speak to to start up and small business day one of the things that we're really excited about being able to partner in have these sponsors really allow us to pull in these speakers that we might not be able to get otherwise. We're incredibly excited about the keynote speaker for our day. WHO's Brad Wolverton? He's the head of content for the hustle. which is an email that gets sent out to? You know millions of people about growing your business. So he's going to be our day speaking about how they grew that email list how to look at trends and how they've analyzed trends to help grow their our list audience we have also some great local speakers. We Have Ailing Bennett. One of my favorite people alien and another one here people. Jd Regard Cain the company character. Exactly absolutely a great character and he's going to be talking about relationship building in the digital age which you know. He's an expert at building those relationships. We've also got other ones Tara Gigiri. Kristen Shay Kelly Campbell. Is someone else that we were able to bring in from New York. She's someone who grew in agency sold in agency and now helps helps agencies grow themselves She's a great resource and also not. Forget about me. But me and Evan Daniels kicking it off with Social Social Media Breakfast at seven thirty. That's one of the monthly events that we put on here at the opportunity machine bringing it into innovate south to kind of help kickoff digital marketing day so I have a question action This is digital marketing day so the crowd that would want to focus on your day is not just marketing agencies or young startups. I mean I mean it can really appeal to anybody. WHO's looking to grow their business? More even grow their their personal brand anywhere from a brand new startup to an established. Small Business to business that serves customers nationwide As well as marketing manager people who are marketing agencies. Really can't speak to anybody. uh-huh even just the marketing hobbyist. As well when you say to further develop their bran which define what brand is because it's not quite the same as it used to be right. Yeah I mean you know when people hear brand they either think it's the logo company or companies says about who they are really. The brand is whatever the public says about you. That's your brand and so we help do as we help. Businesses define that brand and what they want with the conversation they want to be about themselves elves and we hope to find that and help spread that to where not only when they talk about themselves but when other people talk about them it can be a unified message. Right so your day is on Friday November fifteen your day but the digital marketing day is going to be the Katya Center for the arts seven thirty. Am To looks like late at night. There's going to be activities activities and then Dustin November fourteen. Do you WanNa talk about the lineup. So November fourteenth is start up and small business days so to speak nick to who that pertains to is doesn't necessarily have to be someone who is a founder of a startup or the owner of a small business if you are in any kind enough position to make a change like major change within your company whether if if you're one of the head of the marketing department and you know you're trying trying to help continue to build a brand or understand how to reach people through certain channels or if you were even spoke to group of accounting students the other day and I said even if your account counting you don't have any ideas of how to build upon the business and you're like I just make sure that they have money to spend and they don't spend whether or not supposed to spend there's people that are coming to this event who have ideas and are not going to be able to execute upon those ideas unless they have co founders as well so it's not just an event about learning it's also about networking and meeting other people that you could potentially create something with and so we're really trying to foster author that and not just be about the presentations but also be about the networking in exchanging of ideas pure peer not just from the speakers but we have a great list of speakers coming in like on. There's marketing day. We have speakers from all over the country but also great local speakers to the same on start of small business. So we'RE GONNA kick it off with a lot of discussion on what value or you create for your customers. A lot of companies seem to kind of forget over time or maybe even they start off thinking about the potential for profit and they don't stick they don't stick with the course of what problems they might solving for my customers because the problems change over time your customers may change over time and also the competitive nature of how things are going now. Alan how things change quickly. Some other company may come in and focus more on the problem than you are and just kind of get that step ahead of you. So it's really about understanding outstanding how to identify the customers problems how to stay Creating solutions how keep innovating new solutions for those problems and create a focus on that to where you're not just focused on the prophet side because the province will come with that naturally and so we have a lot of discussions in the morning about propositions correct channels to sell through and then in the afternoon. We're GONNA have some sessions on creating culture. We have speaker coming in Bruce Carson who actually his company is based out of Boulder Colorado but he loves Lafayette so much that he refused to leave so he flies all Colorado every week because his company is now based out of there but he has he keeps his family here and he just told you he joined the junior achievement board with me by the same time and whenever I realized that he was on the board because he wanted to focus on building entrepreneurship in Lafayette. As okay. We need to talk. 'cause exactly what I'm trying to do and so to. He wants to start giving back and so he agreed to come and speak for this and he's helped develop culture for companies starting at five employees all the way up to five thousand so he wants to talk about. How do you establish culture? The beginning that in a way that doesn't force you to have to change it and waste time and then lose people when you retain people over time to where you can build it up to five thousand and keep that going smoothly so we have another great speier. Coming in from Colorado's will gregarious areas. Lorraine yes his name is gregarious and it fits in very well because he's super nice guy but he's extremely outgoing. He wants to talk to everybody what he wants to get to know everybody but he has started and successfully exited over a dozen startup companies and the thing is the last one raised sixteen million dollars and so he's he's Kinda got it down to a formula but in the same way that not every formula works for everything. He's been able to identify what he's good at. And where he he needs specific partners to help kind of going back to that whole thing about networking. If you're a great account that's fantastic being amazing accountant and if you WanNa start something in the tech industry you WanNa start something in the food industry then find someone who can speak the language find someone who can speak the food language and stick to what you're good at and then just figure out how to speak to other people and network because that can really help you go through and maybe even start up multiple successful. The company's name no gregarious. It's super easy telling Greg to be honest. I'm not sure if he prefers that but You know we When he introduced himself it was gregarious? And then I heard other people congregate. I was like okay. Well alternatives. They kick calling absolutely. Yeah so but I'm really excited about this list of speakers that we have coming in just a couple of other ones that we can mention Jackie Russo so Bryan Russo. We have Sarah City. WHO's coming in from Austin Texas? Her job is literally to work with companies to help them with innovation and create new concept's subs- to continuously solve problems for the customer. So really excited about having her speak. Islami yeah because it's always easier to keep a customer than to get a new customer Customers don't really want to leave but if you don't meet their needs are don't evolve as they evolve. They have no choice. So yeah so How much is this cost? Now there's different levels of investment if besides spending your time how can people registered for this and what type of monetary investment. Is it. Sure so the the tickets ranged from forty to one hundred dollars. Forty dollars or what. The individual day-passes costs. If you just want to go to start small this is day or if you just want to go to digital marketing day. That's forty dollars for a pass. If you WANNA go to both days you can get the innovate pass for sixty dollars and if you WANNA get VIP pass. Which I think we only have have eight left? Oh it's one hundred dollars and that gets you into the Wednesday night kickoff event as well as a couple of Iraq inbal as well as a couple of other things that we have going on during Startup Small Business Day and I've spoken at and attended multiple conferences that were at this level and tickets usually are anywhere from fifteen hundred upwards of three thousand dollars. This is an incredible value. The lowest one I've seen at the same level as this seven hundred dollars for a pass so people are meals included or did they break for lunch and you know so for the VIP pass on Wednesday night during the kickoff event and then Thursday dirt for lunch if you have a VIP pass than food is included outside of that. We're absolutely going to recommend that people go to some of the great downtown restaurants. Were super excited about that. Especially the people that are coming in have asked me and send us emails saying hey would you recommend recommend to go eat and we've sent huge lists. They're like WHOA. Well it's right. I mean there's so many right there we're having the closing event at Tula tight. I talked about that. Yeah so where do you think is the best. I guess. Take away from all this so I want you destined to talk about your hopes for this because I know this has been a This is really got to be a dream. Come true to to organize us us from the growth. You've had Rodney talking about what you've done in the past but what what do you want to see happen. What would be a success for you so I would say a success for us would be that people kind of going back to some of the previous events that we've done and had speakers come out and speak at a lot of people were coming coming out of those motivated? But they would say we're still not one hundred percent sure what to do next. What's the next step? I'm motivated I want to do something. Do they were excited about that. But what do next. So we've kind of set a rule for all of our speakers this year for to deliver an every single presentation three practical tactical takeaways so no matter what stage you're in if you're an idea stage or if you've been in business for ten plus years you have five hundred plus employees. There is something you're going to be. I'd say at least a minimum with all of the speakers twenty plus because we have you're going to walk away with at least three to five practical things that you can go as soon as you back to your office or you know soon as you get back on the phone or get to know pat or back to the computer. Something that you're going to be able to start working on next to improve your business whether it's going back to your office and saying getting with your group and saying okay. Here's how here's a new process for us to figure out. New Ways is to create new products and services and make sure that it's what customers want. Or here's a new way for us to work together to inspire new employees and keep them motivated into establish established culture here. Or here's a new way for us to get in front of the customers that we've been trying to get in forever for years and and so it's not just about motivation. It's one hundred percent about making sure you're walking away with something that you can basically fill in your hands and then you can. Do you have this next steps. So if we can deliver river that that's the major win and if I have people coming back to us saying that this helped me get this helped me move that needle for my customer. I mean for my company just a little that then. That's great because we want to basically move the needle every year that we do this and add something new so if we can make sure that this has the had some effect on the community fantastic and then we'll build upon that every year going forward even mentioned that really anybody from students to you know seasoned business people will enjoy this. So I'm really excited. About what would you like to see happen. Rodney what's what's a win for you a win. I'm from you know what I'd like to see is destined in part of the reason that we get too excited to be involved in things like this. I want to help. Small businesses in businesses grow in Lafayette. And you know the the region in general and I would love to see this become another one of those Lafayette Staples. That happens every single year. That Lafayette is known for I mean and I mean another group of people have done that with the crew. I walking parade kind of consider this one of those initiatives of helping Lafayette really continued to cement itself as a place where culture and a place for innovation right. Well I think for more information people should go as soon as they can to. INNOVATE SOUTH DOT Org. Org Look at the registration figure out their schedules. And we'll be releasing this podcast early enough for people. Hopefully I don't have any Being a VIP passes left but they you can get into the conference at a minimum. And I do want to bring up something before we turn over to Jason Sikora with Raider solutions when we think about digital as you know marketing and how things can go viral. How can help a business? I want to get in personally your story destined to start off with you. WanNa talk about your dog so oh I would bring this up. I remember sitting in the streets and the one. That's somewhat famous. Okay it's this is an example of how a small bit of information can become viral absolutely. Yeah and and honestly if I would've just goes to show that there's so many things that go viral. Oh that just completely unexpected and because I took a video of me giving my wife Accordion we'd been wanting another dog dog. We had already had a rescue dog and a rescue cat. It's a land absolutely and and we've been wanting another dog at this point in time and so I found someone who had literally of course I was like perfect. You know like I've always wanted a Corgi for the longest time you know. And and so went went drove met up this person you know and secret. It was a friend of a friend and adopted one of their one of the litter and brought it back and kept her at my parents house and so a couple of weeks later I it was. The dog was born in October so a couple weeks later it was getting close to Christmas time. Unearthing it'll be great the dog It's Kinda gone accustomed to my parents but you know we'll give it to my wife because she's she'll be excited about it. So we did the whole blindfold thing and my parents were recorded. And I you know she just she just freaked out like she years and then she realized and she just started shaking she uncovered the blindfold and she just had the highest scream. I've ever heard come out of her and she just immediately grabbed ABC. Khloe is is her name and just started crying. And saying I love you so much and everything and it was beautiful but I thought it was hilarious. Because I knew that she'd be super embarrassing. Posted it but I was just to my friends. It'll be fine and I posted it on facebook because I really didn't think it was going to blow up. I thought our friends would laugh about it and that that'd be it and it was over weekend and we're doing the whole Christmas thing so it wasn't paying attention to facebook and the Monday I posted on Friday on the Monday day. I checked it and I wanna say it was somewhere around. It was over twenty five thousand at that Point Time Story Rodney and views and five hundred comments or somewhere around there. You know I mean it was just. It was definitely not just friends at that point time you know and then as time went on it just kept building building building and even to this day essay kind of haunts us because every Christmas around Christmas it starts pop back up because it comes up then people's memories and everything and they start sharing it again because even last year and It's been four years now so last year was about three three years. People magazine picked it up and started showing it so then it had another uptick and I wanNA say if I add up all the video that I've seen of other people sharing it and then what we had. It's probably probably somewhere between thirty million to forty million views total That it's had business. If I would've known this I would've put it on Youtube. Sir Can actually monetize but I put it on facebook. Yeah by the time. It was already super out there on facebook on Youtube. It was yeah it was done done. We've had a lot in you know you mentioned if you could make that into a business. I mean we've had tons of people tons of businesses. Come to us and say how do I how do I make video go viral. Tom Always telling them you can't make something viral. We can help create something with share ability. Yeah but in terms of you can't create something it has to tap go viral unless unless you're willing to create hundreds of videos every single month and cranking those out you can't just make something go viral. It has to be something that that impacts people and that speaks to someone generally on an emotional emotional level whether it makes them laugh makes cry. It's got to be authentic. Authenticity is key when it comes to things like that and I'm glad you brought that up because for any business it's trying to build itself. They need to know their own story. Right absolutely storytelling is one of the most important things that you could do for your company. It's one of our our big focuses so I'm glad you said that we always tell people that authenticity empathy are probably the two biggest characteristics you can have when it comes to communicating about your business. And what you can do for people and having that story mapped out not just your company story. But what's your customer story story looked like as well having that all mapped opt out from the beginning is is one of the most valuable things new most valuable way that you can spend your time and that's what your video was destined. It was authentic and people felt felt a lot or the ride along with their or are they likely. Yeah absolutely and and I'm glad Rodney has this viewpoint because I think that speaks to why we like working with companies like rally marketing and other some of the other companies as who are mentors of ours or partner with us for different programs because that is absolutely one of our core values when it comes to working with people is is to really get down to. What is we're trying? We care about people we want to solve problems. And we want our companies that we work with to care about solving people's Apple's problems as well and keep that first and foremost and and just really focus on that so when we when we find companies like rally marketing who have similar core values that it makes. It's so much easier for us to work on these bigger initiatives because we know that deep down the core values or going to be about solving problems and at the end of the day. You know there's is problems to be solved so that's all about being innovative. Yeah I'm going to do a shameless plug about raider. But I know they're they're locos pretty much you know they're an IT company. You just want it to work. We understand there's nothing worse than when your computer doesn't work or untrue. But it's like it's focused on the customer. Yes no completely focus on the customer. I think you guys for being here angel. If you have any questions feel free to pipe in an angel was the one who set this whole thing up a few things. One yet Raiders were glad to be a sponsor of this this year and being able to help you guys out in any way that we can You talked talked about innovation quite a bit. I really liked and then you talked about tonight. I wrote this down authenticity in so I I wanted to get a a small shout to the sponsors of discover Lafayette Raider Solutions. Lafayette general pain. Because I think both of those things thanks speaks to those those companies absolutely raider solutions. That's all we can do to help. Our customers is continue to innovate. I mean we had to build a phone system from scratch. I God so I just want to recap a few things. The dates are November thirteenth fifteenth. Correct in November thirteenth is the nighttime time kickoff as rock and roll. VIP events of you have the APP you pass. Then you get access to this event and it's at Rockin ball from six thirty nine PM. And we have our keynote speaker for that as Markgraff Anini with care stone. He releases an annual report on the state of capital investments. So if you're an investor looking to become investor or if you're a start up company looking to raise funds it's a great opportunity because you'll really understand what Louisiana looks like as a whole when it comes to what types to start being invested in what investors are looking for how these investments are working which ones are working which ones are not so. It'll be a really great presentation on how that all works works then primarily networking event for community raiders for the speakers for people who have passes to come in and network with the speakers and network with breath community leaders to really start to say. Hey like what else can we do to improve upon this community and quote unquote innovate south. Where's the location for the next two days Acadia innocent for the arts. Okay so yeah. And then. Innovate South Dot org spell. That out for you still using the the number eight or no no no no and that was a completely different whole different thing. Okay all right. Yeah we're clear on that so it's a I I N. N. O. V. A. T. S. O. U. T. H. Dot Org Gotcha and I'd Imagine Seo on. That website is amazing. Hey we're can people get more information about them so they can go to opportunity machine dot org and all we have all over events and ways to become a member and the services that we provide. Listen on that but I do like to stress the people that if you want to learn truly learn about what the opportunity machine can do for you is just contact us. We'll set up a meeting. I mean that's one of the primary things we do is just do these assessment meetings to understand where you're at in your business and how we can help because if we don't have a specific way to help your business it is our job to figure that out and add that to our list of services. Gotcha an apple away from for a second. You guys do other events. Don't you absolutely and and a lot of them. We do with rally marketing so as he said earlier. There's a great monthly monthly events social media breakfasts that we host here the opportunity machine with Rodney hostages typically as the host. And sometimes you have other people come in and guess because well for that. It's the first Friday every month. Seven hundred machine We also as rally marketing buzzwords. It's kind of an evening version of social media breakfast That's the third Tuesday of every month at Jefferson Street pub excellent and then we do our small business boot camp which is offered three times a year. It's a nine week course. Rodney teaches a class. There we also have Jackie Russo. Who teaches a branding class with? And she's with Brian Russo. We have trail pry teach accounting class. He's with Bruce Gordon Poce so we have. We know that we can't be experts in everything so we make sure that for every single subject matter that you may need to start up a business or to maintain your small business that we have individuals who are experts in each of those things coming to teach those classes because you know with marketing. If it wasn't for Rodney we wouldn't be able to stay up to date with marketing as possible for the class. So Roddy updates. It's his presentation every single time. He does it so that way. You make sure you're getting the most up to date information on the best practices as possible awesome and then finally Rodney. How Oh can people get more information about marketing? Rally Marketing Dot Com. You can also find us on facebook and Instagram at rally marketing myself. Find me on link. Dan Do do a lot there as well. And all the events that we put on we summarize them we create really engaging graphics where we just take the lessons that we learned from these classes and then we bring them online to share them out with a wider audience fantastic. Well thank you for being here. I might have another question off air because I don't want a AFIA. Thank you for being here and I'm glad we can make this happen. Of course Jon thank you for host and Jason Jason Sikora Raider Solutions. Thank you so much and one last plug for the opportunity fraternity machine. They helped me when I was starting up. Discover Lafayette and actually Your predecessor Zack. Barker got me to change the name to discover Lafayette to be more on point and I learned that You can have a great business idea but sometimes you need people to just give you very practical and blunt want advice to save you from MS stepping. So thank you for all you do people who are very protective about their ideas but if you keep your idea in your head then it's almost always only gonna stay that way so it's great to get it out there. Talk to people about it and get some feedback and be able to take. That feedback is very important. Thanks to Lafayette Raffia Economic Development Association absolutely initiative of Right. So today we've had destined to go. And Rodney has here talking about innovates south which will take place November thirteen th through fifteen th two thousand nineteen in downtown Lafayette for more information you can visit. INNOVATE SOUTH DOT Org. I

Lafayette Rodney Lafayette partner facebook Cox business Lafayette VIP Louisiana Gulf Lafayette General Health Rodney Dustin People magazine founder Raider Solutions Rodney Hess Apple Rich Culture Lafayette Iberia Bank Dot Com
Dr. David Fisher  WWII Vet, Lifelong Educator

Discover Lafayette

45:27 min | 1 year ago

Dr. David Fisher WWII Vet, Lifelong Educator

"This is jammed swept and you're listening to discover Lafayette. A podcast dedicated to the people and rich culture of Lafayette the gateway to South Louisiana. Will usually tape in the offices of Raider today. We're taping at my home. But I. do want to thank Raider. Hands on it. Service provider that integrates needs for advanced technical support, effective communication, options and cybersecurity raiders motto. Is You just wanted to work? We understand please visit. Raider Solutions Dot Com for more information. I'd like to thank Berea Bank, our premier sponsor, they support our community in so many ways, and their dynamic team is committed to serving the banking needs of clients in this region and throughout the southeastern united. States I. Bury Bank offers the resources of National Bank with the personal touch of a community bank, please. Visit Iberia Bank Dot Com for more information. The generosity of Lafayette General Health also makes this podcast possible. Lafayette General has been a leader in telemedicine with the health anywhere APP. Your family can access quality urgent care at anytime without an appointment all from the comfort of your home. It's the waiting room. Redefined download the APP today at algae health anywhere dot com. Our guest today is Dr David Fisher a World War. Two army veteran who on October, second nineteen, forty-five was awarded, the Distinguished Flying Cross for his extraordinary service in the Pacific Theater, specifically against the enemy in Kobe Japan Upon returning from the war, Doctor Fisher attended sli where he was co captain of the track team captain of the football team. He was inducted into the S. L. I. Athletic Hall of fame for his Athletic Prowess. He then served as a coach and teacher at Jennings high in then later at S., L. On. Well known for his lifelong dedication to education, he and his family are the proprietors of Fisher early childhood. Education Centers Lafayette his late wife. Shirley originally opened the school in their home in nineteen, sixty, one with seven kindergarten students, and it was the first preschool of its kind and Lafayette, the Endeavour took off like wildfire, and the business has been continuously run for the past fifty nine years. There's so much more to talk about but Dr. David Fisher I've been wanting to have you as a guest on this show and I'm honored to. Have you share your story with Lafayette? Thank you so much. Those worse, thank you. We kind of met recently through Olivia several. Who helped you write your life? Story and I was able to read the book that was put together and. I'd like to just start with your early days. You were born and evangelism. Not, even on the map anymore right, but the first place that an oil well was drilled in the location Louisiana that an oil well was drilled right. It was a little community, and the it was good for young growing up. There didn't have much to offer cook. Course of born in one, thousand, nine, hundred, twenty, five, so that was up beginning of the depression years. and which affected life right to kids in well their parents, so so yes. I was born there and lived there until For. About eleven twelve years old, my mother passed away at a young age with double pneumonia when I was about ten and. Ma Ma family all worked ago of company, so they ended up a Conham Ma father and all of them Florida followed. The work of their, so we ended up moving to jennings a big town of Gen-x. About eight or nine thousand people, but it was a good move for me. Is Say Your Dad, and your grandfather and I worked for golf. Yes, my grandfather worked for them. They kinda originated in the Franklin Louisiana area and. There were three brothers, and all of us grew very close to one another and jennings. I read that your mother. passed away. She said when you were I was ten, and she had actually helped fire fire elementary school. How much relevance is, but my family the little school that just had a school went through the about the fifth grade, and it burned, and that was no water to put it out. You know little town and so I didn't know about this, but Some of the members of the family, older members of the family said him a lot of the townspeople went there to try to douse the flames and had mother. My mother was one of them and They thought maybe she died of pneumonia, and that doesn't happen to in today's time, but they thought that was what might have. Nirvana celebrated it, but I'm not sure that that was true, but she did. Pass away too early age, but. People just didn't deal with those kinds of illnesses. Now one thing I remember from the book that caught. My attention was the salt domes are the wells. You would swim in them. They were that was. A good little town to grow up in. You, know the big oil companies aren't even in that town. And it was. It was wild. cavs. Just people who are interested in. The started out and Texas. You know that was the first. That preceded Louisiana, but they came in. What it was A. Little, all wells! They're very. Were Very. Shallow and that was that was all dumb. That only with about fifteen eight hundred feet of below the surface of the world, and so the all was trapped under there and They. Through that all through the Salt Dome The all and war would come out right and they had to do something with the water, so they they. Built some big earth and tanks way in the back of that little town to collect the water, and so we had to learn to swim their your. Thank you know. What I was thinking, what a great place! KINDA SALTY! Whenever, we've gone and asked him, but with good for kids right, so you moved to Jennings, graduated and World War Two was still last, so you would want know. Graduated in nineteen, forty, three, I was still just seventeen years old and of course. The. Were declared war on the. Japanese in which bombed Pearl Harbor the seventh. Of January, forty, one so too young to go into the service, but one of the thousands of young high school graduates who soon as they got out of high school old enough to enlist in the service right so I did that when I'll barely eighteen years old and you were. Let's say a radio operator. I actually. Enlisted in the Army Aviation Cadet program, but then as did thirty or forty other young children kids at that time, but none of those made that you know by that time that had all pilots and navigators and Bombardier's. They needed, so they gave us a lot of classification tests, and I guess I decided I could learn how to operate radio's on Mars Code and all that stuff, so yes, so I went to radio school at Scott Field little. He were based out of Guam. We will have to. Include finished radio school. I was placed on a beat twenty nine. Crew and that's when we we went to Guam. Yes, it'll be two hundred dollars went to Guam, and I know. You had distinguished service and actually awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross you know what really interested me Dr Fisher. You were on the last mission that many people didn't know about. Everybody thought bombs, superheroes, Shema and and We flew to traditional missions Pablo has been. A little bit. The you know when when you hear, be twenty nine. Usually nine out of ten people think of the of the atomic bomb. 'cause they did drop to of Tomic bombs. The first one in six of August, a forty five, and the second in nine of August and The the American sought that that would cause a Japanese tour to. Surrender, but they didn't mind so. They're. They're. Scheduled for the missions, and that was on the fifteenth of August, and when we went on those missions The Americans anticipating hearing from the Japanese, but we didn't so we were to have a board of those missions if we if they agree to surrender. So we completed the missions I didn't know anything about out is not very well known. There afford targets at that night and they were the larger cit- is by that time had already been crippled, so they probably went to. Some you know smallest is not not the drop them on on civilians, but and also smaller says they had a transportation centers and and ball bearing factories in all that stuff, so that was what we did and so so. When we when we got through that mision, we were sorry Shawna field. We had to land James on the way back and when we were there, that's when we learned that the Japanese had in fact agreed to surrender unconditionally. Question about what it looked like. Did you get to see a lot of the destruction from? Really he didn't know we. There were two types of missions that we flew. One was daylight mission which was. A, which was A. In formation of the planes would fly up individually, but then they'd have to assemble at an island or peninsula and the go over the target enforce so these. Daylight Tan, but we were flying from higher altitudes and. Can actually my location and the airplane, I couldn't I didn't even have a window got up, so I didn't really witness very much of that kind of stuff course at night, the the the night missions were a lot. A lot of low altitude and they were incendiary emissions, so you could. You could. See the fires, and you could see that and There's a Lotta Time Sarah Times when we were caught in in A. These? Lighting. Sign. Lights shining up, and it's gone would capture not cabinet, but focus on an airplane and just slide up inside of that plane. But we. Didn't see view much of the damage that was done. We drop our MOMS and get out of there as quickly as you could say. You were still so young twenty when the war ended. War Wasn't even. Twenty at you. Got Out the on the twenty second of November and my birthday, my twentieth birthday didn't. Come until the twelfth of December, but what a good birthday gaffe to leapt! Pleased to do what I did, but I was equally pleased to get out of the service and get on my life. Came back to Louisiana. Donna and I heard that you. You enrolled at at Sa. You had to wait till the spring. At that time they they had. What they called A v Twelve program they had a lot of. Young men who were. College in the Marine in the Marines are. The Navy and So but I was too late to catch the last semester, so my first semester there was in. Spring of Nineteen, forty six, and you hit the ground running, but I guess both academically, but also with Sports Mary active. A hit the ground running as as the lady that ended up being Milwaukee, a family met. Your Wife. Russia's. Semester there, we graduated the same year though I didn't know her. She was from home from Lafayette I'm from Jennings. But her last semester at college was my first, so we hit it up during that time, but chose not to marriage del all graduated in nineteen fifty, so so I've read that you had not even seen college football game and yet you ended up being captain of the team. were. Just a kid I. You know Mama First Semester there. Well by that time, I was twenty. And muffed my three roommates all about twenty six twenty seven years because. They. Had Gotten into the service much earlier than I did, and they just wanted to get that two or three semesters and get on with our lives. So. It was a different era for Shaw or or most of the men at school. They were Senate Gi bill like they WANNA John Bill and a lot of them were married, and had already started families, and not all of them, but some of them had, so, they really were looking distant, take those two or three semesters, and get their degrees and golden with our lives, said football team I guess was. Men enrolled. Youngest son I'm sure I was a youngest. About been the youngest with everything I've been I was youngest gone my aircrew and I was the youngest guy on air on the football team. I guess. But yeah, it was a lot older, people and college for sure. Did you have a favorite sport? You like track football. Favor Mosey came I guess. A. Successful I. Guess You'd say and each one of them I Her? I tried out for the Olympics of nineteen. Forty eight. And then make it, but also in football. And track so that was track, but in football on I had success I was drafted One a tooth schools. But by that I was ready to get on with my life and now a serious with a sherline already. By, not draft came, we had already said our wedding date and are accepted a coaching job so. I didn't even entertain that I. saw the ladder from the Baltimore Coats colds, asking A. Drafted I didn't call you. They just sent a letter or something. It wasn't it was not then what it is now you know. Maybe it was A. Pay. One very good you know i. mean it was just a different era. So guess if I had not be in service with Shirley motto trotted out but the. An of are accepted the coaching job, so he just didn't even entertain that at all. Even when George Halas contract. And, he was a famous. But I don't regret. Not Having followed that I made the right choice. I'd like to pause for discover Lafayette's past sponsored by our friends at Raleigh Marketing a digital marketing agency that can help you with marketing, automation, content, development and strategies on how to use social media to turn into a moneymaker for your business. For more information, please visit, rally, marketing, dot, com and now the moment. Saint John's Cathedral located at five Fifteen Cathedral Street in downtown, Lafayette, was originally called leglise Saint, John Denver million or Saint John of vermillion situated on land donated by Jean Mouton. The donation provided that it'd be named Saint John, and that it face the courthouse. The current majestic structure is actually the third church situated on that site. Saint. John's Cathedral is the mother Church of the Catholic diocese of Lafayette, which diocese was founded in one, thousand, nine, hundred, eighteen, when several southwest Louisiana parishes were carved out of the archdiocese of New Orleans. Father William Curling's began planning for the new church when he was named pastor of Saint John in Nineteen, Oh six construction started in nineteen thirteen in June, twenty-seventh nineteen sixteen auxiliary. Bishop John Marias Lavalle, blessed the completed church, and not long after the Church of Saint John was elevated to the rank of a cathedral. As an aside Father Turnings was a beloved priest who rode his horse around to provide comfort and solace to the dying. He later served as pastor of Saint Genevieve Church, also in Lafayette and now back to our show. You and Shirley got married in nineteen fifty. Yes, in August of nineteen fifty, and then you took the assistant coaching job in common. They hard me doing the spring to put the offense, and and so then I season was in nineteen fifty, so yeah, and so we we live in Jennings. Family started. There is an anecdote in Olivia Sava's book and it. Kind of caught my attention that you're when you leaving your wedding to go to your honeymoon. Your friends Kinda Major. Pull off the road and get a drink and you never had no. Neither drag wasn't a very well child. I don't think it all in college and. The during their nose day we were married in the Catholic Church and you. If you you, you wouldn't couldn't receive communion until if you had to wait until after you. We we haven't had a meal in a long time and then after the wedding. We were the reception and hadn't eaten anything, and so they they got in front of us and try to stop us and said well your. If you take. Get by drink. We'll let you go, so we stopped racing. We won't away to Biloxi for on him from home. Two hours away I. Guess and so yeah. We stopped in the car by that time with all have signs all over. So we. Roll around the job block and found a call wash. Cooled off a little bit why why cleanup core? Speaking of all this I. Don't want to digress too much. But when you were at S. L. I. I'm thinking about now. How people like to Tailgate and You know there's liquor drinking. And what was it like that? Over. There was a lot of enthusiasm we played in. In mcnasty stadium, which was the old stadium on campus, and it would probably say. Maybe ten twelve thousand people. It was filthy spell, and the had the red jackets that time who were the? Cheerleader in group. You know cheerleaders. And, that was so much enthusiasm from the students amid amiss that even now because. But But it was done headed. Life was different, but But Simpler, but it was very. That was a lot of enthusiasm with football. You know we didn't win era game, but I guess people came out and enjoy what they saw attended. They went to watch the game and I'm just. Not Do, anything about tailgating and all of that Ghana's autumn I really don't think it went on hall. It at that level more mind right so you in Shirley moved to on Jennings and you started your family and I know you have seven children also governor I one with we got married and fifty men. The first daughter was born in fifty two. If you're interested in. It was fifty two than fifty, five and fifty, seven, fifty, nine, my oldest son David Junior. Was the last one born in Jennings, but by that time I accepted a job at l.. and was back and forth, and we moved here, and in nineteen, fifty nine, and we had two more here off lower sitting in your home through more. We're sitting in your home in Lafayette, and it's a beautiful home that it was pretty crazy. For the as I said for fifteen months we are commuted because surely by that time was teaching a little school in Jennings, and so we just didn't see anything, but the said just. I'm sorry I just started moving south and a friend of mine lived on the street and canceled that there were some for sale signs here so. It was a poorly developed area. Dirt your way out and Baton Rouge. To lots here and this has to lot. Ended up with two locks, loud and so. They wouldn't be available this much property now. But we moved here before Broadmoor Moore was even Boeing. Laying the streets out and Brooklyn more when we built here. So. You've added on though I mean. The house wasn't like this when you moved in. I'm sure in one, thousand, nine, hundred, ninety nine, or you know you know we were fortunate. The man that the real estate guy that we bought the property from his name was Sean Young and he had been. He was older than I was, but he was a basketball player here and he knew me as an athlete. When he, he's from some little town in north. Louisiana, but but he was a very prominent real estate man, and he had these two lots listed for sale, and he put me in touch with a builder here in town and so we worked with him and I think I have as well built a house in as areas and laughing at. His own. Put them together like this anymore. How are we? You know we didn't have four children when I came here and the school started here, and it just kept expanding, so we added so the room that we're in now was the first edition that we had along with the. School was in hair plus a Dan, and then we added the we enclose carport than Crozet more. I started out as a as a kindergarten. Sixty reminding sixty one and in kindergarten, so were put into the end of the state system, so large numbers diminished a little bit, but then we by that time sherline me both. Appreciated the law, your childhood education so we started the development programs for four year old children, even for three. Oh two hundred. So! We had to add up. Home Anna in one, thousand, nine, hundred, seventy, eight. We began expanding. Bond property friends for scoring. If, we come back You ended up getting your? In Physical Education Physical Education but. I had by that time I got my master's degree when I was coaching Jennings Nineteen fifty-five Lsu at Lsu. There was no graduate courses at. U. L. at the time so. I got it in fifty seven and. I figured I'd probably be the end of it for me, but then I realized being on a fuck car college faculty I should get a doctrine, and by that time I had become interested in the development of these young children. I had a over them in my house time and so so the a topic of my. Of My. was was a relationship that exists in between physical. And Mental aspects from the development of young children, so they'll talk when you talk about that just for a minute. What were your findings will? We! Definitely relationship, you know you have to prove our thanks to testicles when you done. A dissertation and it was undoubtedly obvious to us that that. In help, but statistically I was able to do to do that because we determined and even the People Helping me with the dissertation. Realize that most of the children that we got when we got them, they came from upper echelon family. There you know a lot of all people moving into down, and so they started out at a higher level, and so but It's definitely true now I have a lot of material that still that we still use. In our schools during this podcast and other things have done Dr Fisher of learned about adverse childhood experiences, and I guess it's the opposite of what you were seeing. You were seeing children that probably had advantages they might have found. At home. You didn't know Balbo, but. For the most part, these children were given a start in life, but there's many that just you know even when I was at US l.. The last. Several years, and I was there we had a program working with special children, who either or slow moving along the educational lines are who physically affected and up so we worked with them I got students from the. Special ED or education to help me, and we worked with probably every area semester. We'd have probably one. You know maybe forty or fifty children from this from the city who parents had children who need extra help right, so we did a lot of that. Yeah, that must have been several warding. This children. So you and surely I know you left s align I. Was it US Al in nineteen, seventy four. You left to work with the business. You know actually I. Surely had. Active. Retiring from US and seventy four and I was in high corrosion Ben is about six years which didn't prove very interesting to me and so that in nineteen eighty nineteen Yes, eighty and surely had knee surgery, and the the school by that time had grown vary. Greatly So and I was involved with it even before so I'll came and had an office in one of the schools that we had and. A. Did everything by that time. You know how your everything from janitor. Because well, you up and down in early in mid eight. Is the economy here drop so? Excuse me. So, he just did whatever had to be done, but I enjoyed that them being there because I was had an office and. I was able to meet and associate the parents with the children who there and that was very meaningful to me. In the latter years island that hadn't been happening, I mean I haven't had an office at the school. Through my children who are active at school. But the miss that closeness, and that's always Asian with the parents of those two. During the eighties. Things really did the bottom did fall out of Lafayette. Economy was at a rough time for your skin, you know. That's why I did janitorial work and all of that for long. We had. The the Fisher school is always worked independently, but we had. Her in an starting in late nineteen seventies. Nineteen. Eighties we went into a partnership with another couple and down whose name was Gustav rose. With the Lady Gail whose real workforce and on Roscoe's so we, we ended up going into partnership with them, and we had a school on South College. And we also had one St. And those schools will doing greatly We put our program to them because they were they were. More familiar with with learning aspect. and. But, but the we'd this associated that partnership when the economy got bad and the one. That school is still one of those locations still available. All the time. The grocery location and one of the South College location is still operating now. One of the daughters, both of the adults are deceased, but the one of the daughters is still operating himself college. So your locations are. Feral, Road Ridge Rich. That was original one. It was actually the billing. The main bill and we're in was a lumber yard which was bought by Holy. Cross church in one, thousand, nine, hundred, seventy, sixty five, and so the church was active in bill, and from sixty five to seventy, and the the new operation and we wanted to. We needed to get this out of the house. I can't imagine how as we bought that property from Holocaust. and. Church right. Yeah, and we had to renovate it and we bought bill and and stuff like that and and seventy three. We had bought property. On Farrell. and. which way out also? Women and children. So we. Cut The grass about twenty five years there and what we find Lindsey our youngest on who worked for Lourdes hospital at the time, wanted to get involved with our school, so he had gone around the work with architect and all that and a nineteen eighty. Nine thousand, nine hundred. Ninety nine ninety eight I, we opened the school on foul I think though the schools that we operate now even lucky to have your family supporting your adverts. This going and I want to mention your your son David Fisher. Junior is an optometry is optometry right? Yeah, I know. His name is well in the also all of them have worked to school and you know even. Even when I think. They were affected in a positive manner by by. Being able to rub shoulders in my even in my house before the school was that they could could win this the needs of children and There were a lot of social physical interchange with these children, so I think they even profited from that. From from that experience. I was sad to read about your wife Shirley's passing and It was about five years ago. Is that screw? You were married sixty four and a half years, and if I may ask. You guys I mean not only. Is that a testament to your love? I'm sure. You must have had your challenges raising seven seven and having your business in your home. That must've it was a busy place. I'll tell you that. We had help. Of course. We're spending still. I mean I think when we constructed this house. The Room ran right now was the first edition we had and. At the time to Razz Raza floors were just coming in to to homes. You know, and so we had to Raza and we kept. Additions we had to rather so. Solid walls in his house and everything so you can't put. A Beautiful So. Very fortunate. I guess, but the, but it was busy I'll tell you that it was busy. The years fly by I'm sorry to the years. Fly By. You know, have they are? You look back and. You know the I. Mean we did a lot of things with our children, we we. Always had a station wagon. Even when the kids were very young, we went on trips there. Whether. We could afford it or not, and we did. For Wall. We've had a motorhome when they first game in it was an old inigo and they were learning how to make them at that time. And so we we went. We been all over on. Usually we go west, but but we we didn't. We had a lot of very interesting troops that I read that you would put like fifteen suitcases on top of the car a seventeen. Well, you know by that time. All of our daughters were holder. Shoes. Had A. Station wagon had had a metal rack on and Jennings. Uh that you you, you can get things done a little town like that so I had a shoemaker, Magni. Waterproof thing that put them top MAS. Molestation wagon well by that. All the girls had their own suitcases. You know. That's a lot of dry on the highway. Well and I. Didn't get the okay. I mean sure I don't have a little time to. Get there and I'd WanNa. Take gets the two or three suitcases off at night. And she said well. You know that somebody's going to steal them and she was right. She probably wants her I. Ever Nine would have a little friction. They're. Having to take all that stuff, all remember how to put it back on, but it was eight. All of that that's different. Gays I remember when I was young in the sixties Osborne fifty-seven like one of your children, but I remember. You know there weren't a lot of places to stay, so we'd bring a cooler with lunch. Meat and Brad and everybody was co with that. You decide ham and cheese, or whatever you had cheese sandwich and stop on the road and. We just had a station wagon. We had the bad down in a motel on somewhere along the roads for different. We didn't have all the highways But when I. Came we usually make that. Make those trips with other friends who also had a motor home, so it might eight right so Shirley. Gosh gone five years. You Look I. Mean you're incredible physical shape I know you're active Do you have anything you can share about that like your? Ninety four Maoz born in nineteen twenty five. And I don't would just been acting all my life. I was an athlete in high school and non. You're still active physically a young kid. And When I went in the PHYS ED, Department Physical Education Department then I, coached on the high school level. I went back to college and. Was In fifth. I've just been active around the house I mean since I've retired. And the one thing that Kinda slow them down my knees. Are Not what they used to. Guess! But I'll just been active physically and. I guess that's the nature of the to. Feel very fortunate are, but I mean your family so lucky to have you. Whether. You know they've been word this. Sickness thing going on as one reason why I have a one of my daughters, who doesn't have a family and not married, and she's been with me for about three or four months and she's. Out Who would? I'm not as careful as they are about protecting myself. You know so so. She's trying to make sure that I. Don't follow the world follow. Been I haven't had any real serious health problems, but I have had some things that would probably land itself to to develop an in something. More serious showed I'll get. Contact with that. So. She's A. She's a more more protective than I. I am where we don't bump heads on it. Know what she's. On she's writing number. We've been very careful here, though said, thank you for letting me. I'm do your home. Well, you know she she. Sometimes I think she's overprotective, but but better better to be that way than the. Ultimate. Give any advice for people like things. You look back on with your life. You know things that are important. When you you know with hindsight, do you have any things to share about? It's been four of you know I don't have any. Any second guessing of my life at all I mean. I'm satisfied. I mean I think that I think that. We've. We've done what what we were. Put on this earth to do you know married one another? We were attracted to one another. We married. We had a family. Proud of them. All of them have done well so I just. To me, that's. That's. I don't second gases in my life at all. I mean I. Guess I've had bumps in the road a little bit home. But nothing so much that the. Rights. A question my life at all. Some satisfied! With were on. It's a sad when you hear about people that do have regrets because you can't go back and embody pretty much tries to do the best they can. At the time you bed I. I'm just a love. Your story I want again. Give tribute to Olivia Woah I. Know You had written a lot of your memoirs and she helped you pull the book together. It's beautiful testament here. Live starting with baby pictures and were years when I started that. Doing that was when I left you us! L. O. U. L. and started at the school in hallel office at the school. And just occurred to me that it might be meaningful for me to to record. Some experiences had in the depression and otherwise upset to share that with my children, so my original thought was was just a it all down, and and copy it and send him copies of it and. So on cow, was he with it at first and sometimes I get busy, not put it aside for weeks a month at a time, and then I'd always come back to it, and then in the longer I'll. Take to get back to it. The more difficult. It was to get my thoughts process together so. That's when when Olivia came into the picture and. It ended up being four hundred thousand percent more than what I what I thought. It would be as a talk some I. I wasn't even going to have pictures or anything like that. But my wife was a big photograph. Photographers took a lot of pictures and my my son. My Children U. where they were. So so they kind of two or three of them helped. Livia put that so so her organizing the printed material that I had. With the with the pictures added great into that I did notice in a lot of the pictures. It was you and the children, so your wife Charlie was taken the. We. You know we. Always one of the kids when we've taking those picks when we knew being at station wagon and get out to see something I wanted to see what the to be seen just as much as I am, but she what she had camera ready to go, you know T. To. Be still while she took. Those pictures show and I'm thankful for that now. was there anything you thought? I would ask you that I haven't. I don't know I just. Think you've code some interesting? Many things to me and I appreciate now. It's my pleasure I've Life is a testament to one well lived not only first service to our country, but raising a family having a wife you loved. Helping our educational. Community you've done so much Dr David Fisher. Like. I said I in Boca. I'm satisfied with my life. There's something in this. In, this room that we're in now. Somebody from one of the. Papers were interviewed me years ago. And Nine in two, thousand, twelve, thousand twelve. Honored by the low Knossos Asia, this sprang gala thing. And so Kids. Won't. Brag on the Daddy, I guess. So they they lay from one of the Catholic publications and interviewed me and got can't turn my head to look at it, but this sign over here on that, though on the other side, sort of explains my. Philosophy of life and that is I think that surely and I will put on on earth. To have family and I'm pleased with the way all of them. Turn out so. To me. That's that's been our contribution to. country. Writer gift and having children that you love. We appreciate you, thank you. Appreciate your questions. I WANNA. Thank Dr David Fisher for joining us today What life well loved, and I want to thank our listeners for learning more about the history of Lafayette and also our sponsors. WanNa, thank Iberia Bank. Lafayette General Health. Rally marketing and of course Raider for all that they do to to make this podcast possible in particular Jason Sikora. Thank you for mixing the tape and making a sound professional. Please check out our website at discover Lafayette Dot Net and we'd love to. Have you subscribe to the podcast. You can do that on your phone or on our website that you can have a new podcast delivered every Friday to your phone and enjoy Dr David Fisher and other people's stories that have made a big contribution to our region on behalf of Discovery Piat's. This is John Swept. Thank you.

Lafayette jennings Dr. David Fisher Shirley Louisiana football Raider Lafayette General Health Jennings Olivia Distinguished Flying Cross South College Lafayette General Lafayette Dr David Fisher golf Iberia Bank Dot Com Raider Solutions Dot Com
Dr. Tina Stefanski  Regional Medical Director, Office of Public Health in Acadiana

Discover Lafayette

45:35 min | 1 year ago

Dr. Tina Stefanski Regional Medical Director, Office of Public Health in Acadiana

"This is jammed swept and you're listening to discover Lafayette. A podcast dedicated to the people and rich culture of Lafayette the gateway to sound Louisiana. Will usually tape in the offices of Raider today we're taping at my home. But I do want to thank Raider hands on it service provider, that integrates. For Advanced Technical Support Effective communication options and cybersecurity raiders motto. Is You just wanted to work? We understand. Please visit Raider Solutions. Dot Com for more information. I'd like to thank Berea, Bank our premier sponsor they support our community in so many ways, and their dynamic team is committed to serving the banking needs of clients in this region, and throughout the southeastern United States I very bank offers the resources of National Bank with the personal touch of a community bank. Please visit. Iberia Bank Dot Com for more information. The generosity of Lafayette. General Health also makes this podcast possible. Lafayette General has been a leader in telemedicine with the health anywhere. APP Your family can access quality urgent care at anytime without an appointment all from the comfort of your home. It's the waiting room redefined download the APP today at algae health anywhere dot com. Dr Tina. Stefanski medical director of the Regional Office of Public Health is our guest doctors fan scheme overseas, the seven parish region of accounting for the Department of Health in all matters, relating to maintaining and protecting the health of our citizens, doctors to Fan Ski, graduated from the Lsu School of Medicine and completed her pediatric residency program at Lsu School of Medicine's medical clinic and children's Hospital in New Orleans before joining. D. H. Age Doctors Stefanski welcome to discover Lafayette. Aren't thank you so much. You could to speak with Oh you, too. We were talking before we started taping I, think most of us know your name. Typically will hear about you when there's hurricanes are public health emergencies such as what we're going through now, would you before we start talking about the covid issue which talk about what you do on a day to day basis on behalf? Sure though Um throughout I've been working with the public. Hearing in Acadia from the last nineteen years and you know Parsons Parsons. Covert pandemic of course I now dealing with. the great majority of of the time and all public. Work out. We work through our health unit that we we have healthiness and every parish. and they in most parishes. Charlton sanctioned women's health. Nutritional programs for kids. We've got some particular interest in mental health services for children. Through are helping. A, pretty broad range of things that we did for direct style, preventative services, and then also I'm GonNa work with our epidemiologists so all mad. Diseases that are required before decision for example things for coli gala Giant and thousands recorded. Authors and so we're very closely with the ones about fifteen allergist and we follow a follow up on this reporter for disease in try to do what we can't prevent farthest friends. Who got that personal health? armed with what we do have. Permission Pals or epidemiology? Logical affection, and they also have an environmental section to work with our Santa -Tarian, who's Beck Restaurant here in this region and across the state? I'm sure that preparation is in done follows. Current safely and also drinking water systems out drinking water instead of Louisiana tested and reported through our offers, two main ensure that our drinking water supply things on. We're following EPA guidelines. So. Of everything, environmental health minute break no health and Disease. Epidemiology! Ano-. Our region of the state probably has its fair share. Health! Issues But you know. Very, we've are very active in vocal community and so So great relationships over the years, and so we we definitely have. Things, but we also. Really do get things. We've. Talked about the. and very dude, alert medical community who does how does bringing packages so I? Think that's kind of set us up for a court situation that we're in now in other disasters that we've. got a very coordinating a medical communities here. Did. You Join The department right after your residents. Saying was your first on last job. Yeah exactly I just. Next. To New Orleans and I love you know. Community Clinics public health clinics. They're gonNA. Love it and the timing, which is perfect position available Detroit try and that was about ready to go into private practice. Know with the group here in town and then Prevail once they arrive. This is my first job was in a very interesting one? You've been so lucky. Yes, to find that you know to find yapping. That fulfills you. Well, let me ask you know here. We are Gosh on July second. And it seems like since the middle of March. We focus on one thing to the next. We just seem to I guess we're all trying to make sense of our own behavior others behavior. What is the real threat going on and right now as we're speaking, were seeing this dramatic. surge of younger. People You know becoming infected with the Corona virus. And it's it's just been a dramatic surge and It's frightening and I just lost to say. It's a personal thing I. I never knew anyone until this week. That actually had the virus and died from it. And Tina's something about it when you somebody. It makes it surreal, but it. It should have been real the whole time and we have been doing what we were supposed to do here. In the swift family and our friends are the same, but. This is really frightening about what's. The. Car about your friends, and you can imagine that Mrs by you know the numbers of people that we're seeing a affected and and you know. It's. A little even working to me. And usual. We're talking about something like this is that no one really knows what I don't I really don't know that anyone thought we would be. Pretty sure I'm thinking thinking saying that anyone thought would in addition that we're in right now within numbers that were in and and really increased so dramatically over. A couple of weeks and then now that. Translates into an increase in hospitalizations and so I definitely think it. It's something that is. Very concerning timing because we don't know when we're. We're GONNA. Be In a couple of months. There's no way to willing to predict it. It's. The new virus. In treating the whole world and Differences and how different areas of the roller impacted but but but this is something new. You know we haven't tasted pandemic this magnitude nearly this magnitude frontine eighteen, so we're all learning together, and it is frightening, because we don't go and not so long anyone but just I think. People need to step back and Be repaired reasonable and and there are and what they do. com within their families, and understanding that this is new. We don't know what the future holds, and so we've got really. Listen to the best experts and do you we can can't. His. That we do? that. We do have more information about how to prevent and treat this ours is. Because it is I can. Understand that we still are in pretty decent shape about the number of beds in the hospital in an ICU I just listened to the. Really. Touching interview that both Chief Medical Officers Lords and laugh at General that was released yesterday. Just imploring people to take care where mass to be careful. And I thought that was pretty profound that to. Competitors such as that I know they all work together with you, but that was quite compelling video to watch them if you have any comments on that. No. Wonder Fun I, think for for people. You can definitely sincerity teething, or and this is something that we that we're all. That most of us in the medical community are very concerned about certainly those that creates tension record the hospital. We're seeing repercussions. Your friends of you know really bad outcome, and that's where all kinds of presents. Because it was you know her nominal interviewing? Instill glad that. Community the people that. that. Yes, I've had the opportunity to work with over the last several months. Because again really. The medical community has full together and we've got you know we make wrangling never physician leadership cal. Individual. Talk from throughout the region, so we're getting hospital for route this region. Speakers call this afternoon. Dr Blaylock and resentful this route together, and so there definitely is the medical community. As you would expect is lying to pull together not only in the treatment. For patients that as you probably had interview to try to help. Reach people because it's very hard? you know feels like you know for me that the message is out. It's not sticking. Here and just about every credible medical expert around the country and the same message and my someone today people a party like it's nineteen ninety nine. It's you know. It's frightening. That message know I don't know how we reach people so so glad I'm seeing that maybe get another approach and getting people to listen you else. is working to help with. Messaging gets us to recheck people because it's. Shock people is all ages and I. Do feel the this message that I hear back that I get I get a lot of. It doesn't feel real beliefs as far as real. It hasn't touched anyone their families if they haven't they haven't. Dal Continue to. Raleigh were nobody and their family. Jackson, so don't know. Stories and Mar In your life. That's not not the experience of many people community and we need to do. I went to a large. I don't want to say the name of the store, but a large. You know store yesterday. I was getting my car fixed and I was out in south. Lafayette and I went into the store. And almost no one had on the mask and. It was it was. Really surprising. It seems like in the last week or two people have really mouse up. You Know Brian. Are Doing Mad. And I looked at that and I ended up speaking with one of the employees, and she said it's very disheartening for her. An older African American woman, but she said you know unless the governor mandate said are it's mandated. The stores are not going to be policing. They recommend it, but it just. It was really shocking to me so if we can confirm to from what I heard on that video of referencing with the to chief medical officers. The majority of people in the hospital now are still there fifty five and up mainly sixty five and up in the icy us, but it's the younger people that are we're seeing. The resurgence of the numbers are rising in that group is. Is that what you're saying? Yeah? By for the biggest increase in its. Way Out the group in Nineteen to twenty nine year old. And a particular eighteen to twenty one. And, and of course those individuals, generally all you have to do something for who are more severe case, and generally younger people have you know are either as symptomatic miles winston semantic maybe. Lose the part typically age group ends up. Hospitalized. Certainly physically. Older individuals. That concern is that. As? We see this growing number of. Young people infected. It's going to be you know I think for wave. You know it's going GonNa continue to build and sooner or later. It's going to spill over too much granted agreement. We're seeing now. Turn to the older population and that age groups in our region seventy rushed. You actually have seen a leveling or maybe smokey. Or we have until this point and I think that age group has been cautious. Those people also need to be able to go. You know out and about and do any to do, and so endorsed no league where you know math. People, but also to help slow down the spread. Because as you said YOU HAVE TO WORK IN STORE CNN Health conditions or Berkeley, so SAM are. You might say someone who didn't go home and. And you know developed far. Dramatic person they never do they have, and then friends do someone high risk and so. There's so much we learned village about this. The role of the ancient matic spreading fire that that's the message changed other some of justification for people who? For whatever reason authorized need to wear masks? Part of what would again we hear is that? There's mixed messages for this. Message early on, we did not know the role as a matter of friends, and so you know for example sources the coronavirus. Thornton spread by people who have. So the initial thought was is going to be like all these other chronic. Or spread by people who are symptomatic where we learned that that's not the case. Great degree and says that's why we wear masks prevent from a spreading the infection people if we are. Harboring. Gotten. Tina I've got a series of questions before getting about I'd like to pause for something i. do it's discover Lafayette's passed and I'd like to share this moment before we continue. This is sponsored by our friends at Raleigh. Marketing a full service digital marketing agency that can assist you with marketing, automation, content, development, search, engine, optimization, and strategies on how to use social media to turn into moneymaker for your business for more information. Please visit, rally, marketing, dot, com and now moment. The great flood of the a Chap Eliah and Mississippi rivers in nineteen, twenty seven was the first major flood experienced by the city of Lafayette. Heavy rains with snow, melting resulted in an overflow into the already full Mississippi River and its tributaries and May nineteen, twenty, seven, the levied by you, glazebrook followed by the levees and Henderson and then Melville Lafayette became a major refugee center for several weeks with much of the city, covered with with surplus tents from World War One, and it housed people in need of shelter. The largest tent city was set up on the laughing at fairgrounds, which is now municipal golf. Course others were also set up at the Holy Rosary, Institute in Alcohol, the former home of governor Alexander Hamilton Lafayette was very fortunate is only a few acres near Lake. Martin were overtaken by water and the city was spared. And thought that would be kind of a nice look back. I think you would have been right in the middle of that. Night Twenty seven. Gosh I'll have not heard that story. Yeah, I'm trying to share past. Bring in some past moment, so we can learn history and also get to know people like you so so we'll thank you and you know. People went their courtship. Unfortunately, we all we get through things. Always, yes, right well, how a couple of questions you know and I'm just going to start out with so I have a twenty one year old. She's my younger daughter a senior at Lsu and Tina. It's so hard to answer what to do, and I'm just going to ask. If this was going on today, I would call phone and say. My daughter was invited to a birthday party. And it's going to be about nine or ten people in it starts in an hour and somebody just call the host and said they're coming, but they were around somebody that that they worked with that they think had covid now what? What do you tell your daughter are the host like what is some out? There will we tell people I had to the? You know nine or ten people and I can take scenarios is. All the time small group like this, and so we talk a lot about the congress setting, and you know bars and ask for you have a couple of hundred people plan together, so, but we hear a lot about. The group just like what you're talking about who don't live in the same household small network that see each other every day or you know this is This is non indifferent. People were all coming from different settings, and you don't know their closure to spend and they they get together and then go out to eat i. mean we hear the story all purpose? Have a baby shower. Is You know kind of pick a a social setting eating proper for people of the House and A couple of days later they find out that someone at that party. come sick and casting their positive and then go back. Colin thing you know this this problem, so I would I would probably now. not not very popular decision, but I would sell you. Twenty one year. Old Guard is not a good idea. To do that unless you know where the party going to be taking to be outside or else, spacing apart or Together in a restaurant around a small table, and Suzanne for two and three hours either. May Be difficult for you to wear masks. To think about those kinds of scenarios I think his outside course are spaced apart sixty and the key distance. Can Thank expedia between you and other people where. You can which is hard when you're eating and drinking, that's why the ideas outside better than inside and keeping space, and then the host for that one person definitely should come, and and you also need to set forever risks so that her to send to say. Office or If. The person who said this. Awesome tested positive. You. What you WANNA know how closely they work with them. You know if it's a big offer building on the capital and this one person you know then it's not mixing right, but it's a small office and there's lots of Interaction course interaction throughout the day in that person's in can really should be quarantined and stay home for fourteen days since and where we used at the crew, Khattak is to guidance is. Our since sixty for fifteen minutes, the more. We didn't have lunch with or you share offers Wednesday across often or y'all fit together frequently discuss things, and not wearing masks and a close together then the masters level risks than you should be. Forced to make sure you're not gonNA eventually develop symptoms, but but even removing that person who said that they were supposed to how it's That the level of concern that I have. So much spread among these me, some young adults who getting together even enthrall Greece this frog. People who don't normally see. Again You know everyone coming. In often then or or together and then. Something you got a couple of days later. Whether it's very promising area exactly right, but some people and I think going way far the other way. Oh. My neighbor found they had it I'm GonNa Quarantine if you're not very close with your name. I know and I think I heard a new. One was seeking. This story in moderation. We definitely have to. You know think throwing things I. It's it's a pretty the rest of are so just think about it like that, and this is sixty. You know it's close. Khattak thanks faces. Hi, freckle regrets, but but you see you can see how a group and honored. Can't get together and they're going to be some. They're going to be that. And there will be transmission if somebody in that group is Karen bars so that that's where we're seeing the. Point, so if you're going to the beach, let's say you know you're trying to go to Florida I hope they still allow. People to come in. You know we waited until they lifted the ban and made plans for later this month and if you're outside. And you're with your family. The breeze is blowing and you're not close to others. Would you advise him out? Again Must Definitely less risk so less opportunity. It's less risky situations. It, but again on you're you're on a beach and hopefully the beaches or or worldy? Monitoring, and ensuring their safety for people that like you said you and your family can have your own little area where you know shoulder to shoulder with someone else and then I think that's I think that's fine. Get Your family that you know not bringing. Together but your family together. You know The has been together with each other realize several weeks, so it's your small your follow network and then I then I think it's fine. You know our speaking around You're trying to get on the elevator. You know. Wear face masks when you're transitioning call. Bride or when you're walking around, and you think you're going to be in a position where you might be, you know in a crowd of course trying to avoid it and again things like elevators and also voice being big. In a crowded crowd. You! Can? Facing. Also sing a disproportionate number of deaths from the minority community. So. That that's. Really an into kind of a nationwide, interesting and increase in. Marketing and in minority in over the digital spent South yeses disproportionate share. And often we know. I'm individuals are are are. have higher rates are likely on. Shows so Talking about people who do work when they are expected or In Texas and that people who are being older sixty. Blood. Pressure, diabetes, Kidney, disease, and unfortunately are all They're all chronic diseases where we've seeing much higher rank. and. Visual and so You know it's very unfortunate and again why we really want to everyone about community by thank. You don't know who it is that you're countering has one. Might and my friend that passed away I did have a long share you know it was. He had an underlying health issue, and it just made it tough I. think to fight at once. Ryan. You know when you when you read the the journal Articles and I. Can you know? Certainly Doctors Logan Coughlin's seems to speak very well. This is a different art kinda you. Know. There's some individuals who have significant. Renounce the and about people. WHO COVER! It has significant damage love. And and so it students I can't I can't say that. He's a new bar. Differences in the treatment, our also proper lar- with the most effective way. Trees are especially those people. I see you. Struggle does the medical community have any idea if? This will be something similar to chicken pox where it could turn into shingles later in life I. is there any idea about? long-term even if you don't suffer damage, let's say to your lungs from being on a ventilator something, but is there any thought about this recurring? In other ways as life goes on, if my question, make sense. After her, we don't know yes. I've never gets his. You know our recovers. How is having any protection from getting it again within? and if they are then. Prediction last, though when you think of chicken pox, for example you know later on your help shingles not likely or very very unlikely that you about chickenpox. That once you get chicken pox, you have really should have lifelong immunity from getting again, but we don't know what this harsh. Answer to get it. GET IT and recover. Are you protected and if you are how long separate section life that's still. Still. Being studied. We don't even know if you're going to be protected. Let alone what might happen again. Do. We have no knowing that my teacher, my cold For people who. Again did having recovered. There is there to be some other. Complicating factor. We can't predict yet. Just don't know. If people. have been exposed. I've heard about the the contact tracing. How does that work? Who Calls you? Sure so someone is exposed the way it works. If you test positive reports, come through. The ones tested and I. You WanNa, clarify this, because lots of questions about I'm about how report yet. and the thing I've seen on social media That that you thought right. You know the term incorrect, and so one of them is If you're tested in Louisiana. Test results our reports. And when we report the results out we, there's a continual process to remove duper community, so if for example I'm tested. Positive and then I get tested again in two weeks. If I turn negative I'm still testing positive it every two weeks and has processed there. I'm only counted want. Super painted. Results are continually being. Rental process so when you can't count reported that that's individual case count every once in a while we'll have to. Wait for. Their individual piece now and we also all reports and Pharaoh or the more. Accurate tests taxes so all reports you act Martin. Lab like chocolate forty, and then you get a call from someone. Contracting. Healthy. Factoring And then they'll call you They'll make sure new. Testifies which hopefully you're already forgotten, and they just go through and to think that number one where you might have been. That they can bring that. To, say you know. Hey, we're seeing a lot of exchangers you know. and then so tiger land right for example that we all know that, so we're gonNA, come out of our contacts. When you start talking about for. In. Pure databases for Congress. and gets to part with his in areas concerned. We will call. We'll. We'll call. It whatever it is church whenever common thing might be. We'll call it and talk about the fact. Transition. that. And then we. had been are. You know I'll two nights before my sense of started with this group of people, you can call people who wouldn't say. When, we don't give you as we say on, you know. On June. Tenth out. This which you should look for. These sentences we should. that's all that process is It's just getting a list of individuals trying to figure out where you might have been exposed and then helping us to figure out. To notify so that they don't then. Perhaps you could see right with faculty. Trying to break that cycle. With all the spam calls, people get I was reading online about the Senate. I think they say if you get a call, it'll show department of Health. It'll show the department, so you can ask to verify to make sure that you're not being. Scanned, but I mean nobody they're not asking for your. Bank account or your security number exactly. through. Your through your. Your action over the last. Couple of weeks before you tested positive and then on enright media that shooting. Symptoms starting. We go back to so They tried to sentence today. I'll restored today's. I was trying to my last night back. To the people on these notifies I was in close contact with. These people say needs to be on the lookout for symptoms, and and you know I think it's for it. First of all people need to cooperate with this. We don't. This is all away we're GONNA. Try trying to again since the kind of that cycle, but it also it helps us to give information to people so You know for example if I if I. Respect in two days prior I had been someone who cares for you know an infant who having child, or who helps me care for an elderly parent. You know we need that person to know what's happening so that they can again be on the sentence themselves on Texas zero round. Probably and then he contacted. Zach, connotation making take the burden off these using. You're not having to go back and call these people which could be embarrassing for people all that should be the we. We take that burden off of just, and we make desertification never maybe. Say. So I think I also read online, or maybe the medical officers from the hospital said those. Are they still only testing people that have symptoms? Who can get a COVID nineteen test? Though. Ideally anyone! Anyone who's interested could tested anyone who is were. Exposed when they cinematic could be tested, but the reality is becoming increasingly problematical testing landscape, and so it It can take up this ten to twelve days in some cases brexit. People were tested. What we're trying to do is is going to be a chef. Because over the last several weeks, we've been testing anyone for the most part mini. Anyone. WHO's interested in being tested? We're we're trying to now from supply it. It made a change from today. Some clinics so. You. You really have to call around and I it's not the best. It's not the best guy, but that's really what we've got your symptomatic then you should be able to get this if you're cinematic. Especially supposed have. It could be consistent with this far knowing how prevalent it is the community, you should be able to be tested regardless of. Online how? How ever if you're matic? You may have trouble finding test right now and really. It's to change. So it's your cinematic that you were exposed. Close contact to someone as far then. You really just need to thank all. Quarantine, yourself fourteen days, and if you develop, then you've been, you should be. So. If you're testing it doesn't. It doesn't change anything with part of IT I. Think part of the reason we're in. We're in about issues. That is an incendiary standing and it's the. To as far and they get a negative test. That's. Thinking continue, but now if you're exposed, you'd have to stay home until fourteen days past. Contacts because some people may develop symptoms and two to five, as some people may dissolve into as long as thirteen fourteen days so regardless. You just need to help fourteen days and. Is Only A. Of where you are today if you're incubating regards. Thank, you might in. No having this, yes. Thank you for explaining that I was going to ask some of those particular questions about the two to five days and. People. People, care. Those But we are, but we do know we do see that there are people who might take at fourteen. I read online and I think this was from some information you had shared. The virus is not viable or able to be transmitted past nine days is, would you? Sure. So what you know earlier on again. We're still learn but at this point. That's evidence that we have. Is that offer? Some people may continued. To Shanta of our well that. Started, with some people may contain as you continue to test them, so nasal swab can pick up borrow or It's very disgusting, so some people may continue to test positive for four five six weeks outta their initial insect, and initially we were saying people should have to negative test results. Well now who learn I don't want 'em testing shortage, and that's not. That's not a good of practice. We also know that people make changes. may still show positive, but the vault particle essentially not translatable. Not Live. The. CDC has not been able to culture live virus past nine things. Out so that's where we get the ten days. If you're sick, stay home for ten days and then you should be able to go back to work or back to your regular activities, because even even if you were tested positive on his car tests, that virus should not fire Boris not likely to affect like keeping. So the time period when does that start? Though Tena say that that's where we used attending fourteen days in the forty. 'cause it may take for fourteen days developed. If you are sick, you do develop symptoms, so they start, so if I start today to our our start out in. And then we count in vain and were to get through ten days. You should. You're not like when she. Don't need. No longer recommend Tessa. Prove that because again. So many people are continuing to positive. Unless, they're going to work like in a nursing home or something. Then I read that you do say that. Exactly the nursing. Fourteen days. A couple of more days because they're working cockroaches sending. To work in a nursing, home or show? we would thank. You need a prison. They held for you. Really give it a couple. Extra me, and then making. What are you saying the homeless population? So we have a great heart with coalition and Mike Yet We really really really do, and they have been working hard from the beginning for prevention and so thankfully know that has has paid off and You know we do not nearly that you've been thinking another places along. Around in shelters because that's really the. You know that's really the concerning opt. For people together because. That's where they were kids. So we you know we definitely got. You know. A great coalition. Really. To try to continue to prevent. I think it's been amazing that and the the jail population I know that they recently had someone bit. Out of all the places, it seems like the homeless shelters and. The jail would be places. You would seem a lot of cases and we just haven't seen that know. How you very fortunate. And unfortunate we have seen it in our nursing, college and nationwide. That's been. That the population that's so vulnerable and Nursing, homes have been working incredibly hard to try to prevent to prevent further spread. A tremendous job that picture has drastically changed, and so now we will see that of course then Lyon from summer. But also. This site regular weekly now. Testing anxious to staff sticks quickly. I party often. Courting people so that they can try and perfect. That's been really impressive. AM. I asked you. The questions you expected. was there something that you thought might ask that? I haven't brought up. Now that I think mask something. Like people challenge challenge. Sebastian. and. Every once in a row for Mobile Lincoln article I'm not really freaking. Helps me understand where the women confusion is and and so there's a lot of understanding. Oracle decided very good. Articles has nothing to do with what we're talking about. The repeal article cited that Wear masks in the hospital setting. thanks covering. Don't protecting the health workers. They're infectious things from other wreck. You know for many parents. And we already know that hostile healthcare standings they work surgical mask or a higher level ninety five, but. When we're talking about wearing uncovering for Kobe, we're not talking about protecting wear wearing the math keeps your droplets essentially yourself. You're not spreading, your car into the atmosphere or to the saints between you and somewhere else so it's not a-. At all but but that's often. When would scientists and so taxes us all as great as it. Of the usefulness are thanks covering? When you know, the Lancet had a great article. Comparing. Sixteen countries aware face coverings were us all they they. That we're talking about the spread nowhere and I mean we'll probably be attractive so. That's one thing I do think that people when they talk about research. It's not comparing this. We're not talking about the same thing. Just people just think read a little bit more an article, but confusing especially. If you're know a lay person, I mean there for me workout. Articles, so when you start that when you look calm when you read them carefully EC that they're not talking about what they're not talking about wearing that. Control Control and I've never tried a a cloth masks and I don't have one I've been using the ones. You buy the balloons at the store and they're so hot. Do you wear cloth masks most of the time? In the summer I have. And I told her October protect. Technical now. Stick. Very mixed. But. It's hard to get used to Tom at times, and so you need to find something that's comfortable for you and especially. The summer now in the summer losses. Tiny figure out what it is that we can wear. Yeah I think it's an opportunity for entrepreneurs to devante. Yes Jenner but yet. Works. yeah, keep that. One last question I forgot to ask you. This herd immunity issue. Is that possible? Do you think is something that really is possible for this? So far from it. You know when when you realize that this percentage of people. that. To develop immunity. And also I guess I still there. The question is still on after if we do develop immunity, how does it Latte right so when we talk about community again? Something like me or she can talk We even minute drive. We know that if you didn't have anybody. They're protecting. We don't have evidence for far. Everybody's hope, but for we don't know that so i. don't even think we can instead of harm Yunessi until we know that that we get any kind of long term unity if we obviously developed this. Park and cover so unfortunately I think a vaccine for be our greatest hope, and hopefully it looks like some. You know some candidates on the horizon, maybe sooner rather. Yeah that's great with. Technology and The great minds that we have. On us, it's it's very encouraging, but still. I think day to day. We need to watch out for brother, so we can watch out for ourselves and not that. You. Think we do. Hurrell here for the. That people that some. They're going to hear a message that reaches them. Which one to be because definitely unity in the message I think I'm over the next couple of weeks. More and people will. Try, to help with messaging breach. Talking. To. Dr Tena Defense Scheme Chief Medical Director of the region four office of public. Health I WANNA. Thank you for taking time and we're taping this by phone and as I apologize. Before we started taping I hope the quality is passable I'll be yeah. Appreciate your time and you know. Every time I see. It seems like you're on, TV explaining. But I wanted to have your voice heard and. I, appreciate it. Thanks for comedy Oh. It's my pleasure and I'd like to thank those that. Make this show possible. We've been very. Lucky to have some generous sponsors Iberia Bank. Left hit general health rally marketing, and of course Raider the company that helps us mix his tape raiders, just great Jason Sikora. Thank you for making this tape. Possible and I'd like to think our listeners. You can visit our website at discover. Lafayette Dot. Net To hear doctors to fans, King and all of our other. Really, interesting, we have overheard sixty guests that have been on so far. Courage to learn more about our community. On behalf of discover Lafayette. Thank you for this this Jan swept. Gone.

Lafayette Dr Tina Louisiana Department of Health Raider Raleigh New Orleans Texas Melville Lafayette Martin Dr Tena Defense Iberia Bank Dot Com EPA United States Lafayette General Lsu School of Medicine General Health
Big Brothers Big Sisters to Benefit from Acadiana PoBoy Festival  The Pandemic Edition

Discover Lafayette

33:41 min | 10 months ago

Big Brothers Big Sisters to Benefit from Acadiana PoBoy Festival The Pandemic Edition

"This is John Swift and you're listening to discover Lafayette a podcast dedicated to the people and rich culture of Lafayette the gateway to South Louisiana up we take our podcast with the ongoing support of Raider and Jason. Sikora are sound engineer who makes this podcast possible through his professional mixing of our tapes Raider is a hands on it service provider that integrates all of your needs for advanced technical support, effective communication options, and cybersecurity raiders. Motto is you just wanted to work. We understand please visit Raider Solutions, dot com for more information. I'd like to thank our premier sponsors for making this podcast possible First Barrier Bank they support our community in. So many ways and their dynamic team is committed to serving the banking needs clients in this region, and throughout the southeastern united. States Iberia Bank offers three sources of a national bank with the personal touch of a community bank. Please visit Iberia Bank Dot Com for more information. The generosity of Lafayette General Health also makes this podcast possible. Left general has been a leader in telemedicine with the health anywhere APP your family can access quality urgent care at any time without an appointment all from the comfort of home it's the waiting room redefined download the APP today at LG health anywhere dot com. With the code shutdown, the hurricane that just hit the coast of Louisiana and the myriad of challenges we are facing today. It seems like a very good time to focus on the good that comes out of our philanthropic community. We're focused today on the poboy tasting and fundraising art raffle benefiting big brothers big sisters of Acadian from September first through the thirtieth. Joining us in the studio or Kelly Crust Executive Director of big brothers big sisters and Whitney Savoia Director of growth at Raider. We're going to discuss not only the current fundraiser for big brothers, big sisters, but the restaurants involved in on. So how nonprofits are surviving in these tough times I want to welcome you to the studio Kelly. Whitney thank you for giving me this opportunity to share the message. Thanks for having us. I'm excited. Yeah. Thanks for having US excited. So we're here the week after. almost the week after hurricane, Laura and so Kelly not only have you been going through the Co vid downturn running a nonprofit but our whole region is really struggling to survive and yet we are people are finding ways to adopt and actually grow during these challenging times. Yeah. And you know it's been interesting I'd like to say that word for two thousand, Twenty S. Because it seems like that's what everyone has had to do is pivot from what they were doing and just adapt. And move forward in whatever way possible during the pandemic and Cova crisis. So that's what we've had to do at big brothers. Big Sisters. We serve our our communities most vulnerable youth in one to one mentoring relationships and our services didn't stop and they don't stop and they're necessary and essential. So we've found new ways to support continue supporting youth in the community during let's stop without I want you to talk about your mission before we get started about this fundraiser. I looked online and we were talking before the podcast started. There are many nonprofits that are doing wonderful work in our community and I'm not sure. Everybody knows exactly what big brothers big sisters does and I saw that it's been was started over one hundred years ago. So big brothers. Big Sisters of America is one of the oldest nonprofits in the country about one hundred and fifteen years old. We are one of two hundred and forty affiliates the national. Federation and we serve seven parishes in a Katie Anna we were founded. In Lafayette in one, thousand, nine, hundred, five, making our first matches in one, thousand, nine, hundred, six. So about thirty five years years old locally our vision is that all youth achieve their full potential while we share the same vision with thousands of other youth serving organizations, many urine Katie Anna, what what really sets us apart is our mission and how we get there, and that's by creating and supporting one mentoring relationships that ignite the power and promise of youth in our communities. Seven pitches yet seven pairs she still Lafayette. Saint Landry Saint Martin Ib area Ra- million evangeline Acadia parishes, what ages are the children and the young people that you help. They range between the ages of six and eighteen years old six years old six years old so Most of the children refer to us are referred to us through a single mom. Looking for a positive male role model for her son we do enroll males and females, but that's kind of the majority. Of Kids that come to us in our program and we serve. Youth. Through a few different programs with our traditional community based program where bigs and littles meet out in the community nate go places together and do Stephanie meet about twice a month. Obviously got looks a little bit different right now. And then our other traditional program is our school based program and that's why our bigs go into schools, Lafayette parish and spend time with their little one hour a week either studying reading together, just walking and talking and hanging out simply building a friendship. Based on trust in. Friendship and learning and growth. That right now is where we've really had to pivot. Because of volunteers, not being able to go into school in that so much uncertainty surrounding. The Cova crisis and social distancing. So we've been able to pivot and launch an e mentoring program which has been incredible to see so far. We've had so much interest from volunteers because it's a really easy unique and meaningful way to volunteer without even leaving her having to leave your office. So that's been incredible and what we're able to do there is serve youth that we weren't able to reach before and maybe more rural areas because when you're volunteering virtually proximity distant right isn't an issue. So they used their phone so yet. So it's resumed platform every other week for half an hour, and then we have an APP called the. APP and that is a safe digital way to communicate between the parent, the child and our staff. So we're super excited about what? E mentoring going to look like for us in the future it's really going to change the way people mentor and. Support Youth these days. So we're excited in our our community based matches, bigs, and littles have slowly started to see each other. Again of course, we put out some pretty strict guidelines must wear masks outdoor activities, but because kids have been our school haven't been able to see their bigs. We were able to keep most of them connected virtually. But there are anxious and they're anxious to see each other. So we actually this month in September were celebrating an eight-year match anniversary. So they were matched eight years ago super cool. So that's a little bit about big brothers big sisters. So I have two questions about the bigs. Okay. About how many do you have if you know that? Would is your typical. Profile of a big well, people ask us that big come up from all walks of life and you don't have to have any certain talents or characteristics to be a big. You just have to be a caring adult who really wants to shape a child's future and help kind of guide them on the path to their biggest possible future. So we currently have about one hundred and fifty active big little matches. At this point, we always have a wait list of kids waiting rematch for the big. So we need big volunteer bags now more than ever to step up in volunteer to spend some time with the child. Now, if you're a big if you're a volunteer, do you go through a background check of course So child safety is absolutely our number one priority. So our big go through an online orientation. In. What we call it pre-match training and child safety training and one on one interview with one of our case managers specimen and a half in it's just a time for us to get to know you. Your strengths and how you can help a child. Your interest, your hobbies, your home life. In the we do a layer criminal history record check. Obviously we do. Positive references also. And if anybody's had experience previously, you'd Serving Organization we reference there also so. What really makes our matches successful is that they're professionally supported and supervised. So we don't just introduce a big to A. Good luck. Good luck. We'll see you around town. We have staff back support specialists whose primary role is to support those matches. So we speak to each party of the match once a month in the first year that and after that less frequently. But. We're really proud of what we do and we're really proud of the impact and outcomes that we have. We're based in research based organization so We have some really great thanks going on and we're excited about the future even during these these really tough times were able to continue to grow. Maybe a little slower pace right now. But yeah so. Well, Whitney's spent here with us and I don't want you to think I forgot about that. I wanted to get in and mission the scope of what you do county and if I can just have some up. You know from this point last year in two, thousand, nine, hundred, today your world. How long have you been with the? Big Sisters since two thousand, thirteen I started off. As a program staff number so your world has pretty much been turned upside down. And so we're here to talk about the pivot. How you can continue offering your services. But before we move on what what's the best way for people listening to get in touch with you or find out more about volunteering so they can just simply go to our website and that's a Katie and a big dot com big. Okay. Katie a big DOT com. That's great. Yeah. Thank you. You're welcome. So Whitney. We're here in writer on studios. Chris Writer and your company Raider is so generous helping causes in the community. Why are we sitting here today? What would is raiders role. In this new fundraiser, we're going to discuss what would roller you'll playing s like you said, community is a core value of company, and so we always look for opportunities to help the community through volunteerism donations, anything that we can do to help and so. The restaurants have taken a very big hit this year as well as our local nonprofits, and so when we saw the opportunity to not only help local restaurants but also help big brothers and big sisters. We saw it as the perfect opportunity to live out one of our core values. That's great. So what's going on? We're here on September second that fundraiser really just got started just got started yesterday. So Acadian poboy festival has supported us for the past five years. We've been there nonprofit arm and donated over thirty thousand dollars. So this year in order to support restaurants in the community and big brothers big sisters, they're launching yesterday. Kanebo Festival, the pandemic edition. So there's a couple different ways to support. One of them is donating through the to the big brothers big sisters. FACEBOOK It's an art raffle fundraiser. So each donation gives you an entry to win this year public festival artwork, and then the second way is to pope for the month of September so. There's there's ten for participating restaurants in Lafayette and they're all have a specialty poboy for the month of September and a dollar. Each sale will come back to big brothers big sisters. So it's a great way to support the restaurant who took a hit and it's a great way to. Support a nonprofit right and that's so generous of those restaurants. Would you go through another ten? Is that rob? -solutely no, there's tens painting. We've got poop arts bakery save all Maget Acadian Super Wet. Pizza. embar POPs, Boys Dino's pizza. Burgers chops mid city smokehouse lack cafe, and Johnson spoken air. Sunday was supposed to be with us this morning also and I from what I saw, he had a staff member could make it. So He's actually working at his restaurant this morning or he would have been here to talk about this but I know that social entertainment has done so much to support our community's needs and I wanNA give a shout out to everything. They do absolutely there they've said again like I said. Raise over thirty thousand dollars for the past poboy festivals, and this is another great way not only to support us and to support the restaurants but just support the sponsors who have been with social entertainment all year long right. And maybe wouldn't have necessarily have benefits from the in person events because things changed so drastically so people don't have to say that they're supporting big brothers big sisters when they order poboy it just automatically you get a dollar or two specialty poboy. Wow. How did this come about like I? Know you said gusts and his group's social entertainment had been supporting you but. How does this come about like? How did you become partners? You've gotTa Really Network yet keep your group viable Kengo One of the things I think it came about is that we're our. Main location is downtown Lafayette and so a lot of the work that social entertainment does is downtown. So I think that was a natural connection to. And just identifying a nonprofit that really have an impact in the community and I think. Gossiping Social Entertainment. saw that need him saw that there was a relationship there so we're so grateful for it. Obviously and for them to come up with this way to continue to support his this year in a new kind of virtual way has really been. Now, the art raffle is that a new addition or have they done that every year also? So there's every year. But. This is a new way to highlight the artwork by Trent Hoop I believe in. So it's a picture a looked it's It's food, right? Yeah. It's voice. I think a jar of bloop bloop late Mayo and. A Canon Tony sacheries return. Yeah, it's five poboy to represent the fifth year of the festival, and so you can win the actual painting. The painting is then turned into posters all over this city. So it's the original painting that you're winning. Okay. So how do you get into that? You have to go on the facebook page? How do you get into the raffle can find the fundraiser on facebook at the kid and poboy plate lunch festival okay and they'll be the fundraiser for big brothers big sisters there and each donation will get. You a chance to win the original art work and how much you recommend people is there a minimum contribution? No, there's no minimum contribution and when when people are thinking well Oh man I can't contribute something any little bit helps any ten dollars fifteen dollars any little bit helps, and so that's important for people to know also that you don't have to donate a big amount I mean I like to say any donation bigger? Little makes a difference because when we can pair a big with child in the community. The impacts that the child experiences. They have a ripple effect outcomes for generations to follow and his family. So it's really important. And so any amount how? You don't think in sitting here too. I don't know if you can relate to this Whitney but sometimes people do want to give and they do want to make a difference and they don't necessarily want to get dressed up and go to a fundraiser and I know you've probably experienced that Kellyanne putting on events. But if they can give us make a difference and no matter what happens their money's going to good a good place it is and that's the great thing about incorporating the boys our lunch and dinner what a great way to grab lunch for the Office cruise. Jim Short. Shorts or up to go and it's a great way to support and you're feeding your family. and. It's still a great way to support right so Whitney I want you to share son about raiders role if you can give more in depth than what you'd like to see for this month coming up. Yeah. So Raiders Roll here simply is we were the presenting sponsor and so what happened was gus and I met randomly and I was like want to help I'm neuter reiter and I want to figure out who we can help in the community and he was saying how they had to pivot social entertainment has had to cancel many many events this year. and. So they're learning how to pivot as well, and so we were talking about a way to use technology away to allow people to not leave their homes but also participate because you don't really know someone's comfort level with even leaving at this point. So like Kelly said, you can have a poboy delivered to your home. You can order it for the office and so really raiders responsibility in all of this is just a support, not only financially but any kind of way that we can volunteer and help get the word out and that's what we want to do. So any goals like we've got what twenty eight more days. So man I know. Guys ordering poboy you think we can sell ten thousand. I think. So I need ten thousand is amazing and I think we can do it. That's my belief. So that's our golden thousand. A month. On money is a lot of money and just to put that into perspective where dollar goes at big brothers sisters, it costs us on average about twelve hundred dollars a year to support one match our community based program say that again so. Our cost per match or support. One little match in our community based program is on average about twelve hundred dollars a year and you've got one hundred, fifty matches. So you've got some fundraising we do do fundraising to do and in order to grow and and those costs breakdown. We have enrollment 'cause when you mentioned earlier about the background checks. So the background screening for one big is one hundred dollars. That's for one big and we don't. We don't charge any fees, volunteers or children. It's a free ineffective resource for families so. It costs about a two hundred, fifty dollars to four are. For the training and enrollment process you know that's obviously the cost of. The training, the software, and that sort of thing. So. That's where a dollar goes at big brothers. Big Sisters majority to our direct program services, right? Right. Any other things? You'd like to add about this fundraiser. Have I asked. What you've wanted to cover about the raffle and also the the restaurants people can find all that on your facebook page and people can find that on the facebook page are just want to. Shout out next year's festival will now be the. poboy plate lunch festival in April. Twenty twenty one makes sense downtown. Lafayette. Hopefully will be in person again with the supra and others involved there more than boys. So right? Yeah. So that's an excellent opportunity because they've had social entertainment had festival plate lunch festivals. There was a really great opportunity to combine the two right right in any fundraisers on the horizon for next year like besides this one are you looking ahead to being able to get back into the swing of society we we are Actually I'm glad you asked. So we have our largest fundraiser. is wine women and shoes the annual event this year typically, it's a spring event in person hours shopping wine tasting we doing amazing program fashion show obviously we have to pivot. So we're going virtual and we're super excited are online event launches October first and culminates with a live broadcast of the event on October eight. So it's a week long of virtual shopping. So we have marketplace partners who will donate twenty percent of their sales back to us that week. So we've got Kendra Scott, we have some local boutiques we have a wall of wine Rafael we have mega key closet raffle. Just, amazing auction lots you some great things happening that week and then on October eighth. We'll have no guests audience, but we'll still have a fashion show a program highlight our mission moment. In our shooter is who are fundraising for King of soul. So that's happening in October. We're super excited to see how that goes. And hopefully, twenty twenty one will be back for our fifth annual wine women shoes in person right and you know that helps those vendors that are partnering with you because they need to remind people all set. We're here absolutely great way. It's a great way. Yeah. So we have some. National partners like Kendra Scott but we also have local partners from the marketplace and then we have our annual murder mystery, which is like our most beloved event that cheerers. And it's grown over the past four years to again be a massive success. It's usually in August it's nine event and we do a whole murder mystery production three-course dinners silent, auction, and again, it has grown each year we say, oh my gosh how are we gonNa talk this one and somehow we do so this year. We're hoping fingers crossed that we could pull off. Christmas holiday themed murder mystery on December fourth and fifth, but we'll see. Yeah. So it would be like limited limited audience we would do we would do virtual we would do virtual tape a tape the it would be live streamed for free. Probably, the Saturday evening and then, but we would have small in person. Attendance figures seventy five people sounds like fun. It does sound like, yeah I wanNA go I. It's a blast and I'll tell you if anybody who ever goes. They always have a last at murder mystery. It's fun and it's it's a long weekend and I just posted the other day a memory came up from last year's event. Posted it on facebook it's like. Falen, sick event of the year it is and murder mystery has developed and just changed over the years I mean we're talking. Twenty five years ago Fred Mills was in murder mystery. Okay. Still best still the best person. Frederick Freddie's Great. But over the past us, you know we have an original cast they were in for twelve or thirteen years at some point they're like, okay we gotta step down. But the community always steps up since. nonprofits an through murder mysteries. One way so. You think there's crossed. We'll see but we're on for twenty twenty one. Yeah for your service. Thank you so much. I'd like to pause for discover Lafayette's past sponsored by Rally Marketing, a full service digital marketing agency that can assist you with marketing automation, content development, and strategies on how to use social media to turn into a moneymaker for your business for more information. Please visit Rally Marketing Dot Com. And now, the moment where we focus on how people survived during tough times our community faced in the late nineteen twenty s in our communities hero Maurice Hyman. The first real took in the history books about? Maurice. Hyman was during the historic nineteen, twenty, seven flood. While Lafayette didn't directly experienced the devastation, the refugees definitely deluge Dr Town the Lafayette Chapter of the Red Cross established a general headquarters? Maurice Hyman department store. Approximately twenty thousand people flocked into Lafayette with all the possessions that could carry looking for higher dry land all being absorbed into a town with less than fifteen thousand residents. It is quoted that the pathetic scenes presented cars, trucks mule drawn wagons one after another, and they arrived in front of the headquarters building loaded with refugees, their household goods, and other property including chickens, pigs, dogs, and in many cases, they're all. Barnyard animals were tagged for safekeeping at the fairgrounds in Lafayette the animals of course had to be fed along with the humans. On. May Nineteenth Nineteen twenty seven Maurice Hyman assumed direction of the food supplies for the refugee camps setup all throughout Lafayette he worked day and night, and as they distributed daily output at least three thousand loaves of bread fourteen, hundred pounds of meat four, hundred pounds of rice four, hundred pounds of beans and other large quantities of provisions. HYMAN began to purchase the livestock from the refugees to secure local meat supply. This also decrease the daily demands of managing the livestock that had to be fed during the crisis always the manager always the problem solver Maurice, hyman proved his loyalty to the region he served in a share that moment with you because, of course, right now, we're going through the the horrors in the aftermath of Hurricane Laura on top of the COVID crisis. And I share this with you because of course, we're going through the aftermath of Hurricane Laura on top of the covy crisis, our prayers and best wishes go out to all of those affected our thoughts are with you and we hope that everybody can emerge from us at some point more hole in Mawr together. Thank you. Kelly is were were looking at where you are and again congratulations on as you said, pivoting. I just want to say thank you very lucky to be partnering with Reiter. I'm I feel very fortunate. They've helped me with my podcast and I've watched them partner with other wonderful local nonprofits. You've really been fortunate to make this connection. Yeah. This is an incredible opportunity for us to be introduced to a new. Partner in the community and hopefully in the future can work together on on on other things. Yeah. I know Chris is very loyal when he supports people and I I just can't say enough about all the support that raiders given to you united way. So many other I know they're involved with you L. in so many other wonderful causes. So wouldn't he? You know as we're winding down? In, your position as Director of growth, you're seeing what's going on with Raider I'd like to share some other things that you guys do and maybe you can talk about how you've pivoted. With clients and others because people still need. Tech help more than bad now more than ever people or learning new ways to utilize technology for nonprofits, four events for their workplace and so Raider has been helping tons of local companies and nationwide companies learn how to work remotely. We provide the hardware we provide the security we provide everything that you need to work from home and to be efficient and your business you know. Lots of companies are pivoting right and so we're helping them with that transition and really a lot of companies have never worked remotely it's new, and so we want to walk these companies through it. So that's not a hectic process. It's not stressing them out. We WanNa make it easy. You wanted to work. We WanNa make it worry understand. That's right. We WanNa make sure that you all. Of your equipment working so that you can be as efficient as possible in your business and I mean, we're fortunate to meet some of these local nonprofits who have been utilizing technology and we can help in that way if you have a technology need and you need some type of mentor ship on how to use technology for events, you can reach out to me personally and I. Will help you teach you how to use technology to raise funds. That's what we do, and so we want to help the community in any way possible and if they aren't sure to use technology, we can teach him how do people contact you with me? So my email is w saw at raider solutions, dot com, and that's S. as in Sam A. as in apple visas in Victor. E A Lotta people go. Is it? Oh. That's right. So it's w. what wait Raider Solutions Dot Com and I have to say. Even small businesses I know you help it's not just big companies that you guys are helping but I think the most stressful thing we've been through with Kobe besides the fear of getting sick as how do you cope like equipment wasn't available for a while you couldn't get webcams I couldn't get a an extra microphone for my podcast. Things are now coming back up, but it seems to me like People's work habits are gonNA stay. They're going to shift from where they were just five or six months ago. Is that what you're hearing from people I think so I think what's going to happen is some companies are going to stay working have workers remote for the long term and I think as employees they're starting to, I, truly like to work remote I'm. Getting more things done, and I also thank the nonprofit leg of this. They're probably gonNA find events that really work well virtually and integrate that into their plans for next year. So everyone's going to change the way they think about technology and utilizes long-term in my opinion, a pork from home for years now, and you really get so much more done at home but yet the personal interaction with your cohorts with your friends. You can't beat that. This is exciting for me to be in the studio today it's been over five months. Yeah. You really can't beat it and sometimes you know I. As a leader of an organization and having to make decisions on on when it's okay to return to work, how should we return to work? You really have to take mental health into consideration. Oh. Yeah. Absolutely and you before we shutdown. Would you talk about that? You must be seeing that with the kids like you've been concerned I'm sure about their mental state while they're they've been shut the are so our number one focus since March has been to keep the kids connected to their bigs because social isolation social, distancing all of a sudden they don't go back to school. Don't know when were returned her school. Compounded the the many adversities and traumas that these kids face. When things are good when things are well so for us, the mental health and family well being and the child wellbeing has been a major priority. So we'd have to shift some some of the ways we do things in terms of training are volunteers so Having our volunteers being trained on how to talk to a child about mental. Or? Scaring them. Right to answer a question of child asks a question about their skin color and says. You, know. Why does someone? Look different at me because of my skin color. Our bags to be able to say. The. Proper things and how to respond to. So we've been focusing a lot on not only keeping them connected. Also on educational engagement, but but on mental health and. Family well-being. Thank you so much both of you Kelly crust executive director of big brothers big. Sisters. And Whitney southwe director of growth. At Raider for sharing this message, it's really it's heart warming, but it's also I I feel hopeful that. We're going to emerge from this year I. Don't know I don't want the year to be over hate to say, I I can't wait for time to us because every day is precious but yet man waiting to break. Yeah. We're feeling hopeful to and maybe that'll be the second word is twenty twenty in a month or so everybody's feeling hopeful about the future. And the future of our community and supporting. Vulnerable using the community. Now, we'll have such an impact later, it's an investment. Produce leaners we produce volunteers would produce high school graduates sometimes first generation high school graduate college graduates when you've got a great website to that's just big brothers big sisters of the Katyushas. Dot Com. Website. Yeah. When you type in big brothers big, it'll come right up yet but it's a beautiful sites. So I'm really encouraged people to go to that site find out more about the whole mission and different ways that people can plug on. So thank you for being with us. Thank you so much Kellyanne in Whitney and I wanNA thank our listeners. I'm so grateful for your support for wanting to know more about your community. Again, we could not do this without the generous support of Iberia Bank. Lafayette General Health. Raider. And Rally Marketing just want to thank them all and please visit our website at discover Lafayette Dot net. You can find this interview and over one hundred, sixty, five, other introduced really shine the light on the wonderful things going on in south Louisiana in particular Lafayette. On behalf discover. Lafayette I'm Jan, swept.

Lafayette Raiders Whitney facebook Katie Anna murder Kelly Lafayette General Health Maurice Hyman Lafayette Iberia Bank Dot Com US Lafayette executive director partner Raider Solutions Chris Writer States Iberia Bank America First Barrier Bank
Mark deClouet of Axis Behavioral Health and Recovery on Increased Opioid Drug Addiction and Overdoses

Discover Lafayette

1:09:11 hr | 9 months ago

Mark deClouet of Axis Behavioral Health and Recovery on Increased Opioid Drug Addiction and Overdoses

"This is John Swerved and you're listening to discover Lafayette a podcast dedicated to the people in rich culture of Lafayette, the Gateway to South Louisiana. We take our podcast with the ongoing support of Raider and Jason. Sikora are sound engineer who makes this podcast possible through his professional mixing of our tapes Raider is a hands on it service provider that integrates all of your needs for advanced technical support, effective communication options, and cybersecurity raiders. Motto is you just wanted to work. We understand please visit reiter solutions dot com for more information. I'd like to thank our premier sponsors for making this podcast. Possible I I barely a bank they support our community in. So many ways and their dynamic team is committed to serving the banking needs of clients in this region, and throughout the southeastern United States. Iberia Bank offers three sources of National Bank with the personal touch of a community bank please visit. Iberia Bank Dot Com for more information. The generosity of Lafayette General Health also makes this podcast possible. Left general has been a leader in telemedicine with the health anywhere APP. Your family can access quality urgent care at any time without an appointment all from the comfort of home. It's the waiting room redefined download the APP today at LG health anywhere dot com. Mark Declare it of access behavioral health and recovery is our guest today a Board Certified Family Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner markets here to discuss the rise in fatal opioid overdoses in the Acadian area. Axes recently opened in the oil center in Lafayette and has been open in Alexandria since twenty eighteen. Some numbers to share that point to the rising rate of overdoses according to the Lafayette Parish Coroner's Office Fifty, seven people overdosed in two thousand, nineteen compared to forty, six in two, thousand, eighteen, and forty, three in two, thousand seventeen. And just this year from January through may twenty twenty. There were twenty three overdoses with eighteen of those deaths being attributed to opioid overdoses. Even more disturbing, the seven Oh five Oh, eight zip code had more overdose deaths than any other zip code in the parish this year and more overdosed us in that zip code within the first five months twenty twenty then all of twenty nineteen. So mark the clue it that's a lot of numbers I just shared, but I want to welcome you to discover Lafayette. and. And also welcomed this discussion. This is something we chaired before we started taping I don't know anything about. OPIOID heroin and it's it's frightening thinking about it, and it just seems like the past few years we've been hearing more and more about the problems associated with us. You know from people addicted to painkillers that can get them anymore I. Know There's a lot of other reasons to with covert. That's caused this car. Yeah. Thank you Jan by the way for walk me to the conversation. Since. I've been back in. Lafayette Figuring out where the voices are and where the conversation as I think listening to this podcast has been It's been a plus for me coming back back home. I am and I'm just like you right I. Was a bit shocked ads, my lack of awareness of the problem I think until I kind of I. Guess. Indigenously, if you WANNA put it that way. found. Myself right in the middle of it. Practicing at a hospital. Alexandria. I'm from Lafayette's born and raised here my wife and I moved away back in two thousand, ten I went to Tucson Arizona She was in graduate school I was started practice out there and we you know. All. Good Cajun came back home to roost and and here we are and they can. Kind of figuring out of navigating the behavior space trying to understand what this community is about because all communities. Come like with their own routine in their own culture like. I found myself. In a spot that was unfamiliar to me, and that was treating people who were going through depression going through distress but also with this co-occuring addiction whether it be alcohol or opiates or. Unit right methamphetamine. But what seems to be occurring at the same time and couldn't open up a journal or a newspaper around the country without recognizes over the past three years but was this opioid epidemic right I kind of what I'm having these conversations with colleagues or with family or friends or? Leaders in the community this is or was right the the the epidemic of our generation until Kobe came around Kobe. Just happened exasperate. It's right right. Unfortunately, it takes the air out of the room as it relates to just having conversation about this whenever you were mentioning the stats earlier on the thing that stands out, we don't see in Lafayette? Parish Louisiana and the data, but actually nationally. The number of opioid deaths I believe began to actually finally drop in late. Two Thousand, eight, hundred, nineteen, right we began to see with I, think the the spotlight being I'm on Big Pharma a number of physicians nurse Practitioners P as the number of prescriptions Russia going down. It's slowly but it was happening. We saw finally a dip and then sure enough. Cove it happens right and we see this massive rise again and it's not because. Writing Prescriptions I think those are still somewhat on the low end in terms of. Dropping right. But because. Access, to heroin and fence and all his so readily there. And people are just. They're isolated right now, right? I. Mean especially in this community where we we? Of Thrive on getting one another passing a good time I. WanNa Stop You right there. How is heroin accessible like? Is this really a street deal like I promise you I'm so ignorant on this fit where people turn If they're not in what you call the drug culture I know that there are a lot of people we've never know are in this trap. By this. There are take back question I'm going to pivot a bit come back the second right I think something that I thought before I started getting into space and treating in the space. was that people who were using heroine? Right there are people who using Fenton, all people who are buying prescription drugs on the streets. We're not my neighbors right? We're not my friends not my family. But by and large. The vast majority of people who are being. Challenged this use disorder or those people rights people who are busting their hip for the first time. It's seventy right and realizing that. Maybe. Their genetics a little different than you and is right. Then all of a sudden they took their first purpose after the first painkiller because they were prescribed it and. They had a reaction to it as much different than my reaction to it's right and it was one that they just can't live without and all of a sudden the prescription ends right and. I'm sorry my body is going to feel that way again because that's kind of how we're created as that's right. We're kind of looking for that drive and that person is looking for it you're going to find it. Heroin is heroin and. Fennel are just accessible as prescription drugs. But there are a lot less costly and so to the person that you may get the prescription drugs on the street from the also have access to heroin events and all, and so if you can't afford the higher costs prescription drugs. That'll be the next option. It's just amazing. GRANDMA GRANDMA GRANDPA, our friends you know it's it's bizarre and the first time that. Is absolutely right. I can tell you the most. Memorable case to me was. This. Woman who was in her early eighties. They'll. Right broker. First time ever prescribed opiates entire life ever. It was effective or. Worked, yes, it worked. She never felt the way before and I'm sure she ended up in the hospital in Alexandria. We're able to kind of slowly wean off and. She's still doing well now in treatment in recovery. She will tell you that she'd never thought that she would be quote unquote recovery but here she is and it's not the recovery that you and I think about right away right but those are. The people who are just as affected by it as the ones that come to mind right away I want back up a bag because I realized we didn't really talk about your background. So we're talking about current crisis with opioids, but you've been in this field. For a while. So what did you start out with? What was your initial focus intriguing people? Well so so I'm a I'm a nurse. Nurses two, thousand, five. I went back to school and got a Masters Two thousand ten behavioral Health Psychiatry. Tucson out there. I was in the geriatric world for quite a bit a lot of dementia with behavioral services. So a lot of thinking about treatment outside of the box because there really isn't no treatment algorithm for that's right. How do you prevent mom from wandering out the front door and how do you prevent mom from? Your intruder, not your daughter, right? Those are the things that I I dealt with. On. This. Reflect back on at the time there was still a bit of Co occurrence of of seventy s during that. I think we were realizing that it's The to always go hand in hand but they can go hand in hand terms of Behavioral Health Psychiatry and Corker. When I came back to Lafayette though Kinda was. Jumping back into the behavioral health field staying in geriatrics who is just for me was big difference right I couldn't find my catch ten figure. I think just the culture that community out. By ran into who is a good friend of mine now is Dr Rodman in Alexandria. Mentor mind, that he's. board-certified Psychiatry and addiction medicine, and he's like convince me that listen there's a battle up here with fighting and let's figure out how to do it. The story of our starting up there is pretty I'm sure we'll kind of come full circle to that later on but that's kind of how I got into it more. Accidental stumbling but also just this drive to want to help the community right I think. For me lays my personality is such that when I'm asked I see something that there's a need I want to figure out a way to help help create solutions to the problems. His patients allowed me to. Develop a knack for jumping in that field. So we're kind of hundred percent and right now so I wanNA share on. Over a year ago, maybe almost two years ago I had David Joseph on the show he was. US Attorney for the western district of Louisiana he recently was appointed to federal judge, but he shared her in the show mark that. Really, Lafayette's been in pretty good place compared to Alexandria in north as far as drug activity, gang activity, and all that, and so I knew that. Does there really has been a bigger? Drug problem in the state. It. It's definitely it's definitely as I'm dipping my toe back in Lafayette because we just came back to Lafayette and we've we launched. Practice here a couple of months ago. I'm realizing that right the culture is a bit different in and there. And the access to care is different. And I think it's different for probably a couple reasons I think the one you just alluded to is definitely one of them up in Alexandria but in around rapids parishioner world's parish in some of the rural communities that surrounded is definitely A lot more parent I would say though that the data points that you mentioned earlier, the launching of the show demonstrate though that I think we may not look at the substance use potentially as much of a problem. I don't know why that is I. Mean we're kind of we kind of come up in this culture, and if we can get away from opium conversation for a second, we kind of in this culture where it's okay to have alcohol and pass a good time right and not saying anything wrong against that right. But but it's very difficult to have like an alcohol use disorder in this community whereas. May Be more difficult to have it up north in Alexandria It is a different culture. You know I think there's fewer I hate to say it fewer Catholics. It's more of the the baptists kind of different mentality about what how you behave. So you stand out more I guess. More of an issue than you would hear. More more here, right. I, mean I mean given the number of Cultural Festivals Rights, there is I Fortunately, always opportunity for community, which is why I think a lot of the community right now is suffering and why was talking about these numbers but I think for people who are trying to go through recovery it can be increasingly difficult especially during this time when those who are going through recovery who are trying to maintain sobriety rely on fellowship of. Colleagues who are also going through that level sobriety. But now we're doing this social distancing. They're not able to have their meetings. It's person in person it's so difficult and. It's it's challenge I. think that's why we're seeing and I think these numbers may be shallow. Right? That's why we're seeing massive this jump all of a sudden. which kind of brings up this conversation about what can we do more to provide care access to care? So People Aren't overdosing right I think it. Kind of changes the conversation a bit right if we cannot provide this level of community that can. Guide one through this process are there other mechanisms that we can? At worst right. Prevent people from overdosing and best rights give them different outlook where they can dive into treatment right away and that's Kind of what we're what accesses about right now right I mean we're we're a behavioral health and addiction, treatment. Outpatient Clinic. But a lot of what we do is focused on providing medication assisted treatment for people suffering from obesity. Order. That's a lot of words there. But when I mean is that there are certain medications to medications in particular. That's. From day one day two can immediately reduce withdrawals and cravings for opiates and provided that they maintain. Compliance with taking them, they could jump in the recovery a lot quicker, right they begin to have meaningful conversation but listen how did this begin whereas the trauma associated my life that made began started this journey and how can I begin to break some of the patterns that are contributing to it? What is one of these drugs wants he pronounced? So buprenorphine is. The name of a drug that was. Came to market back in two thousand right. And whenever it came to market. There's a lot of concern by the federal government that this may be the next. Morphine. Spar out of control and so. restraints was placed on clinicians only prescribe a certain amount per month restraints are still unclear since right now. So if you are a clinician who has wavered to prescribe this medication, you can only prescribe between. Two hundred, seventy five prescriptions per month. All you can do can do any more than that. You mean like that many patients patients per month it's it. It's bizarre but and I think what's happening during Kobe is there's a realization that this restraint may be. A bit overbearing but my partner in Alexandria he's tapped out with. So we're in the middle of recruiting recruit nurse practitioners, physicians who can come in and partner by this level of treatment, right because we were capped out. Part of the challenges the need is so grades that the clinicians by Louisianans kind of bizarre doesn't happen everywhere but. This medication is prescribed on a cash only basis through a number of clinics around the state and those on the margins even those who on the margins are having a difficult time especially during co bid affording two hundred and fifty three hundred dollar visits just to be able to do their medications. And this is kind of how access came to be. That the Rajmond and I were treating the hospital. Alexandra where we work. Who by the way is a leading true provider people suffering from abuse disorders long hostile Alexandria. We decided say listen like we we keep. Treating People Hospital giving them appointments with clinicians all the community that we know are prescribing this level treatments and they keep bouncing back. To three months later with kind of the same story I couldn't afford it. It was either paying for that are paying for their entire rights, and then for me, what happened was the turning points Somebody from Lafayette that I knew a long time ago, ended up in our hospital and. Like all of us read the story just hit home right to somebody who was a new mother who? Had to choose between essentially between the lights and her medication rights and she chose the light that our kids because that we all do which is before us and for her it was too much either overdosing alive. Thank God ended up in our hospital and I dress we need we need to do this and so we started providing medications as a treatment in the form of an orphan in our clinic available to anybody. Medicaid. Medicare. Private Insurance. Private insurance typically covers this all a- all all insurance. So that was never initiate wasn't. It was never an issue policy of practice. It is right and you know the the Pew Research closed they did a deep dive probably about a year ago into how can we increase access to this level of care because? This is obviously becoming the journal American Medical Association in February this year I'm released some data and some judgment treatment with people nor friend. Is the only type of treatment that separating from the crowd in terms of preventing overdoses or preventing acute events in the hospitalizations, and so if that's the case, why can't we increase access well now? The Pew Research Coalition Head suggested that the state should probably figure out ways to increase reimbursement for providers. So there are a number of grants out there that are available for riders to increase that level of reimbursements they've been taken up, but we're still seeing. The Access to care that we should be seen. Why. Is that and if we can make suppositions but I can't speak to that I don't I don't I'm not in the weeds in and I'm not going to question a colleagues decision to have their practice that way I'm not there. But when I do know is that It is a level of treatment that is effective in keeping people hospital because for me I'm practicing in the hospital in the outpatient program in my clinic and we're seeing we're seeing less hospitalizations we're seeing. People who may overdose like. Overdose. Less Times in a year because I mean just because you're over within your dying right they they're around medication or people who may give them medicine to bring them back. So we're seeing less incidence in the population that we're treating. And so. We're beginning to try to have a conversation us. We're not giving this level of access. Really it just seems like you know there's too. I don't know how to say like if you if you know you have a problem, but you're not really going to talk to your doctor about it I cheer people just lie you know do or do you take drugs? No, do you drink much? No, and you know then you leave and you do whatever you're going to do. So a lot of the doctors don't know and they're not really skilled in what your skull down it and then by the time somebody needs help they really need help and they end up. In a rehabilitation facility, our outpatient I'm just saying that I don't know. No no no, you're. You're you're preaching to the choir here. It's I think big divide. Fragmentation of our our healthcare systems no doubt right. There's no doubt that. To the providers who use opiates more regularly, for instance, people who are treating those with acute pain broken bones into that nature. When they're told, Hey, listen I have and we tell our listen tell all of you providers right all your doctors and there's cracks that you haven't obese sort and that you're on your friend and then just give our number because they can call it took a while and we still don't get that many phone calls but I did receive one the other day of this this this and it was encouraging right because I mean here I am right this nurse practitioner giving guidance to this vascular surgeon and Alexandrian Jameson. This is what needs to be done. This can be done, right I can be there with you want me to, but it was probably you know one of the first times I've had an open conversation with a clinician who was not part of my practice or my my circle that. I walked away from that saying you know what? Like? This person's GonNa. Do. Okay right. Not saying that the other competitions weren't but you know it's a hard conversation to have. And I think sometimes know as clinicians. And I say, this is my patients all the time like it's okay. Sometimes I to have the answer, right? Don't have. We don't know everything. That's okay. I say that but let's go find out where those answers are right and so. You know at least in our little bubble, our little circle Alexandra, we're having that conversation and I'm hopeful what we'd be able to begin to have it here. This is the first couple of steps of making happen. Yeah. I'd like to pause for discover laughing. It's past brought to you by Rowley Marketing, a full service digital marketing agency that can assist you with marketing automation, content development, and strategies on how to use social media to turn into a moneymaker for your business for more information. Please visit rally marketing. Dot Com. And now the moment's. The focus today is on the history of the site of our current Lafayette City, Hall located at the corner of university and Saint Landry. The original structure was built by Mr and Mrs. Luke Martin in Nineteen Eighteen on what was known as the old Spanish trail. The beautiful home was sold to the Carmelite nuns in nineteen, thirty, six the year in which they were established in Lafayette under the diocese. The three Acre property was perfect for the cloistered nuns. It's beautiful entrance graced with lovely live oak trees covered with Spanish moss a fifteen foot concrete wall surrounded the property, and it was overtaken with English Ivy. Over the years, many additions were made to the house but the growing flock needed more space. A permanent monastery was proposed and money was raised by the Carmelite guilt. The nuns moved into their new home at twelve fifty Carmel Drive in Lafayette on January twenty, second nineteen, fifty six. In one, thousand, nine, hundred, fifty, seven, the building was purchased by sears and Roebuck to build a new store in nineteen seventy nine when sears moved into the new Acadian Mall, it's sold the building to the city of Lafayette to utilize for our current city home. Visitors to city hall can now understand how riding the escalator visit with city officials on the second floor is reminiscent of shopping and sears back in the day it was sears. Thank you. So it seems coming back to the topic more about. Doctors clinicians there's been almost a boomerang. The other way my brother-in-law is from Charles Unfortunately Laura things who've been turned upside down, but he just had back surgery. And he's in his early seventies and he said, you know he was offered no pain medications. He really needed it. He got it. He said I found that I just felt better taken advil but it seems like a lot of doctors have really boomeranged where they are very concerned about people getting addicted and so. We need to find some middle ground where people can get pain relief and physicians can be trained or todd. Warning signs and how to curb abuse. You know I so I would I would agree, let me verse through this disclaimer out there as a nurse practitioner. Louisiana? We cannot provide treatment for chronic pain. So I can't speak to those clinicians that Canon Arizona we could when I was living up there not that I did. But what people get now, what do you mean like? What are they prescribed? So if if I'm Zorba if I work in primary care in Louisiana. Or you're not able to I'm not able to I cannot push the two things we can't do by law I can't prescribe opiates related to chronic pain and I can't prescribe. Any kind of controlled substance for weight loss, which is really bizarre. It's an old antiquated law that just hasn't been changed yet but. But speaking to what you're talking about. Just because I. Think it's a very common conversation. Yes. It's absolutely. I. Think probably a number of years ago whenever the pharmaceutical industry first began being looked at and there was this big concern with Purdue Pharma you saw this massive pit right to the left I, mean we there's this. Great documentary on Netflix call the pharmacist and I got ta I met him. He was at Bari. Yeah. And so but but whenever that happened, you saw this pivot with clinicians physicians, all of a sudden prescribing to not prescribing right and these people who had been on prescription opiates for all of ten twenty years being cut back drastically. And having to turn to some of the substances you and I were talking about earlier as offensive on heroin because they. They're going through withdrawals and so Yeah I. There needs to be a real conversation one about access to also about how can we better manage better provide continued access to people who require those drugs? I. Think One of the Challenges Jan that's Out there that we don't have enough clinicians and so it may be easier for me as a clinician to give you. A one month with number refills and I'll see you. Out of the time, I can't off you quicken because there's there's there's no access to care We just don't have enough clinicians. Would explain if someone does come to you, let's say that they're looking for some relief and they're gonNA take. View buprenorphine are fan. Yeah. How does it work in the body? What does that do? Yeah. So So people offering competes with you know opiates for this receptor the receptor that opiates bind to they make you feel less pain make you feel that euphoric right and so? The bind there though is significantly stronger than opiates writer than synthetic opiates and so whenever you take people. Go throughout the body and find all those receptors and grab onto them. If you happen to relapse during the period time where you're. You're not going to experience. The effects of the opiates nearly as as you would otherwise. That's why. How keeps people alive and keeps people in recovery rights, as opposed to the other way around when if you were to stay off of Opiates in not use buprenorphine you may relapse in two or three weeks and. Your body can't tolerate the level of of substance you're taking in and all of a sudden find yourself in deeper the throws and so it prevents it prevents the receptors from being exposed to be. Given, typically twice a day. It stays on such a typically about twelve hours. The great thing about this medication is you can't overdose on it right? I. Mean You can't overdose on it in it by itself you take it with like benzodiazepines medications like Xanax Outta van you can't overdose because of a combination of. There's an additive effect that becomes to sedating and all of a sudden you may have a rep decreased respiratory drive, but same thing with alcohol. But by by itself, you can't overdose with it and it has a ceiling effect and so. Even, the four effect that you may seek with opiates it's very difficult. Some people may achieve it because their livers a bit different, but you can't typically achieve as the people who are taking. Aren't going experience withdrawals they're creating aren't as great. All of a sudden. They're actively engaging in treatment I think something that we tend to forget though right in a lot of clinicians who may be prescribing this or new at the front end is that you know? Treatment with OPIOID. Use Disorder. For any of us sort of there's going to be. Relax as part of its right I think we need to kind of get out of the shift and understand it more as a disease process almost like. Diabetes where you're going to have a moments when you may. Run into Thanksgiving and all of a sudden you're taking it a bit more than you can handle. Weird analogy but kind of the same thing at the clinic. People are coming back. Sometimes, we may come back once a week depending on if they need a higher level accountability, we'll give them enough medication for a week or two weeks for a month. And we're doing these drug screens and so when they come in. Initially, they think, oh, I gotta try to maybe high. Let me see if I can. Hide drug screen or whatever. The case is because there is this fear that there's stigma across the table and the challenge. That access is really good at is knocking that down. We're having a conversation the last thing I want to take you off this drug because it's keeping you alive and keep going keep doing. Well as he can treatments. Let's have a conversation about how did you end up slipping up at wet led to this recovery and? It's amazing. Jan. to see the level of activity that happens whenever that's realized right when you let them be who they are like. You don't have to pretend. Yeah. Yeah, I mean. To pretending they are right the are because because you know to hide things to hide things we when families come to us saying, Hey, listen you. My my son is struggling. What's the next step we often have to tell him you need to pull support on toilet they need to almost hit rock bottom right so so that they take help yeah. Because I was thinking if you're taking this medicine mark. You, want to get better because if you're not going to comply if you don't really have a desire to get better unless it's court ordered, I don't know who typically CONNAH's to access. So you know we we we. Because, we're one of the only one of the only now, there have been other clinics that are beaten to offer it, which is great to hear. One of the only clients that are offering it's for take Medicaid and some of the other insurers. We have a wide net whenever you cast a wide net like you're going to have. Some players who are not as as truthful and forthcoming, and those people typically get weeded out. You do have some people who who may try to obtain more the drug because maybe they can give it to their cousin who also struggling but doesn't Wanna come into the clinic. Right there is still a it's very, very common. Right? I mean the stigma is is very thick I. Mean I think I was watching handful of Ted talks a couple of months ago and I think that the citrus seven that were out in the out there on opiate use order was about knocking down the stigma and and It's real, right? It's even real amongst clinicians, I mean I think the vast majority of clinicians who would take somebody in their clinic just primary care and they hear that they have an addiction issue. Hell. What did we do right? What do we do and then if you turn into the community and Lafayette, we have some really good treatment centers with even just for an outpatient office visit. It's there is a limited access to the primary public who especially are on the margins during one difficult economy to put it on top of that so. For us it's can we begin having conversation with conditions and showing them how easy to get wavered bud you can do this in your office just show you the INS and outs how to do it. It's not difficult. You need to join us. We just show you how to. Increase the access right. We were having A. We've been having conversation with with Lafayette, general and one of their. Sister hospitals out in. Bridge, and hopefully we're on the cusp of being able to offer this level of care in their sister hospitals outpatient clinic in the next couple of weeks next month or so. But getting big partners like Lafayette General involved rights. It's kind of where it's at something that you know I'm now that I'm getting back into those space and Lafayette's trying to encourages is how can we get some of these larger players these Lafayette generals, the Lords of the world. To begin to help having this conversation. And the avenues we're trying to go by as well. We need to find these avenues where people go to when they're in crisis. So what are they go? To urge go ers right and so you know. Unfortunately yours what happens is getting a long winded here. Sorry. What happens is is A personal of the ER and they'll. Want a prescription for some sort of pain medicine and and. These are by and large all the patients who were asking for pain medicine. Yours. Well, we see them. We kind of stigmatize them right away whereas. If, I think these entities new. You can just prescribe them a small amounts medications give them an appointment to Clinton. I can prescribe it's Taking their insurance rights, they don't have to jump the too many hoops they can get access within a week. I think we can begin to have more. About, how can we create easier avenues for access to care? It's all about access to Care Jay writes. So, yeah yeah, what a great conversation I'm curious with code. And like you said, the decline in our economy people losing jobs. And then the isolation that people have experienced. Is this all what has led to these increasing numbers and I'm wondering as the second part of that thought. Is this even accurate. You think some people just die in their sleep and then people think oh They just died in their sleep like you know these numbers accurate. Yeah. I, mean, these numbers are only accurate as to what's reportable what the corners investigating rights I mean not everybody gets an autopsy absolutely right in and not everybody's family reports. You know whether it be happening this person's life whenever they pass away right it's been a challenge for them in dealing with their managing. Member for such a long period of time that. The rest of move on agree you`ve You bring cove it and I was having a really been having a really good ongoing conversation with a couple of. Some reports in the community Brosseau. Healthcare colleagues about what is Kobe allowing us to do that increases access to care, and this is happening nationwide conversation. One of the big fears is that was that All of a sudden people become to their physician appointments to or the nurse Practitioner appointments to be able to get access to the scare. So what are we going to do? Well, we see. The federal government cms right. SAMSA, which is the suburb abuse federal entity that oversees this level of care they not. They immediately knocked down barriers they said listen. We're not going to require face to face visits. Some pretty much if somebody calls you on the phone like we're going to. Use Good judgment prior. To that yes absolutely. Right. I mean and so. This is a really interesting I. Think this is an interesting conversation but what happens is is all of a sudden, some of these pharmacies and not just from people working perspective but from even a managing hypertension, right you're seeing these patients able to fill their medication more regularly because the access. That was initially required to get in a vehicle drive thirty miles to get your primary care appointment be there on time sit through it then. People. Yeah. You don't even go in and sit by other people exactly. Right. But because of that, right These people who been on the same medicine for years, but maybe have a limited to fill it. Every three or four months are filling it more regularly. Right? Where we requiring people to jump to too many hoops I mean I think it's fair to say just through my own experience that the healthcare system that yeah, we ask a lot of patients right just to get access. I think you're GONNA see a lot of that change. Going to be an opportunity out of some of the problems we've had I'm hoping we see the opportunities that are presenting themselves. And I think that people who make those decisions are being in. This is the first time that we're seeing some bipartisan. Legislation passed through the Senate's and through Congress that increases access to care through telehealth with Medicare. Right? I mean, when did you see bipartisan support and on the federal side I mean I almost that is happening right? It's pretty clear. I sit on a are the American association repetition was Health Policy Board and we review a number of these legislative. Pushes give our your name and it's pretty remarkable to see over the past six months seen about five pieces of legislation have made it through yet but they're they're gonNA make it through it but it's it's hey, how can we? Reimburse clinicians for maybe a phone interview so they could just refill you know marks hypertension medication right I mean do we need do we need you donate mark in a car thirty minutes now? That's that's crazy but we need to be able to. Think Reimburse collisions they drive the right for maybe a people who need a higher level of care right but but to get back to your point your question. Yeah, it's. Cova. Has Created environment that is exasperated was already happening right we're just seeing a lot more clearly I think pre Cova did Jan There were Kobe like areas as to access to care all throughout Louisiana. Especially those we're all parishes. Yeah it's very few providers. So desperate yeah. You know I remember a number of years ago whenever the Affordable Care Act was passed Louisiana was one of the few states in the south to take the Medicaid expansion. Heralded as a great. Thing for our state what? Has. Happened though is that we give everybody access to insurance and care. Don't have the number of clinicians available to provide that level of access. We may we have a lot of regulatory barriers and place that prohibited from getting there a good example of this is just what I do right I'm interest practitioner. I'm kind of getting a bit on the left side of the road here this conversation. For me to practice in Louisiana. Have this collaborative contract relationship the physician practice with them. Our Clinical Lafayette has run all by nurse practitioners. We have a collaboration with physician in Alexandria. He is the person that signs that document. He doesn't provide oversight, but he's just his name sheet of paper, and so he's responsible. You know at the end of the day, you know the perception is he is responsible he's not he's not a nurse practitioners responsible research. Our training allows us to to treat people without any kind of. Supervision that capacity you'd be surprised to know this in twenty three states in the country nurse practitioners can practice without that level of oversight. Arizona was practicing able to do without some. You know I think that's an example of a barrier that probably could be removed but we live in this partisan era where it's just it's really hard to get things to move through legislation and so. What Kobe does not getting back to it. Though has highlight how difficult it is to access care So I partner at times with a group, a local group beacon community connections I don't know if you know holly how it but access to care as the biggie and a was telling you before we started, there's a conference next week, their annual summit, and we're talking about you know opportunities arising from some of the things we're learning about who's getting sick, who's the most vulnerable population, and it's the people that don't have in most cases adequate access to care and their health conditions are direct reflection of that and. It's heartbreaking but yet you know I think there's hope from this I think the policymakers are seeing that. Clinicians need to be reimbursed at the same rate whether it's telemedicine or in person, and in fact, we can streamline a lot of the the paperwork and like you're saying that difficulties. Holly getting to the doctor and getting the medicine figuring out who who offers Medicaid. Like a lot of doctors won't even take it so they can't people can't figure out where to go. You know and so great. Holly Holly is Great. So I, I had the good fortune meeting holly during. When I first moved back here. I did a leadership Lafayette. Lafayette he's a numbers person. She worked on a couple of small projects with her she was actually. One of the ones that connected us with the same more than hospital abridging, and so just she's such a connector. Yeah. But I'm looking forward to the panel talk and that conference the. But you you bring up such a key point that I think that this is going to provide and hopefully will provide. A different Lens for us to look at access to care and I know people who are who are much smarter than me who are looking at this at a macro level. are already connecting those dots right And, can we provide a system in which people who need a primary care can have an easier access to interest? And then if things may need to be elevated to a higher level of care. Let's kind of. Free some of the time that these physicians may have. So they can see people who need that level of access. In the hospitals want that because I know they're not reimbursed if somebody's in the emergency room and they're readmitted within thirty to ninety days, they don't get reimbursed. So it benefits everybody the patient, the providers, the hospitals to keep people healthy and get them on their feet whatever they need whether it's opioid addiction help are getting their high blood pressure medicine you know taking it so you. And I think you know. What's happening with your conference next week I. Think we're beginning to see and I'm excited to be back in. Lafayette to. Just be able to listen to this conversation, right? That's the next week or even have this conversation as Ms. Received some of these entities come together right And it's a common bond. I mean people need to work together we have such a really smart healthcare community are right and and I. I it takes I think connectors rights like I. Think like Holly to be able to bring those people together and say, let's have a real conversation about. Preventing some of these issues from happening the readmissions, right things of that nature because we have. We have some people here. Love question maybe two more questions and we're going to let Jason. Sikora ask a question if he wants If, if people are interested in more about access I, know you're in the oil center right in Lafayette. Can they just come directly to you or do they need a physician referral? What is the procedure for contacting you at access? Yes. So So. Never his right. It's a new depending on your insurance. Some insurances do require a referral by your primary care provider. There's only a couple of that I can think of if you have Medicaid or Medicare direct access. Typically able to get people seen. You know within a week we can have we we have. We have we have about. Seven eight clinicians on staff between Lafayette's Andrea. have. Probably twelve by the end of October and so because of some of the bears. Telehealth if somebody's coming in and they're in of crisis we typically may have somebody in one of two clinics that can see them within a certain period of time. We'd rather though if. Appointments Made. You can email right to the clinic info at axis as a ex ISB HR DOT com. Or you can call the clinic you can go on facebook. And easy access. We have people messaging us all the time on facebook. We're giving them access pretty readily. But no, it's it's command said employment somebody will be there to see you and we'll get you access to care as quickly as we can. Yeah. And it says behavioral health. So we've really talked about the medication but. There's counseling that goes along with this. So. Thank you. Absolutely right and so. One of the. Laughing when I think about this we have. A. Young Young Guy who works for our clinic in Alexandria and every time he talks to people who tells them that he? Oh Yeah. We we work in an addiction clinic, but we've we get to tell people that we're primarily behavioral Health Psychiatry Clinic. We treat people with depression bipolar disorder pushing disorder rises. We've just been in Lafayette now for a couple of months and. We are in the process of network with a big believer in in not having to reinvent the wheel right to the number of places, and so we're networking with with communities agencies that had intensive outpatient programs that therapists we're in the process of bring on there right now, the way that whenever we came into the community, what we saw initially initially right away with the need. Access to. Medication treatments for all of these things right as that's happening were now being to absorb some of the behavioral health components. Yes, we do as a as. We all provide behavioral psychotherapy during these this these visits but having one on one psychotherapy, we're bringing those moments and we still have the referral number of to provide those out. We are in the process of developing those in house though. If someone feels they have a problem with alcohol use disorder? Do. You also work with people that have that We do so. So you know by and large we are a substance abuse treatment center right and so whether it's alcohol use disorder whether it's nicotine use disorder whether it's. You know methamphetamine, which is very, very prevalence rates much more prevalent. You think he's disorder we are an avenue for access to that level of care. We do. Use Medication trucks zone to reduce the cravings and alcohol. We find that effective, very effective as we are in the process of I. Think in the next couple of weeks, we're going to be one of the clinicians one of the clinics here that will be offering. The NALTREXONE and an injectable form once a month vivid that's very, very effective in reducing cravings of people who have find that pill to be effective. Sometimes, it's just a pain in the but that take a pill every day, and so we can get a pain to bet with the shot once a month. I haven't had to do that but I find large. People who who do choose that routes have found it to be. Extremely effective and. By the way it's covered Medicaid all the way through and so and that's an only because it is that effective it can it reduces the craving. And other insurers. Yeah. So so yes so and in doing so right people wouldn't be coming in and they may require higher levels and said, we're networking with some of the intensive outpatient programs in the area. Contemplating. Starting one of our own next couple of months in the process of when that's folks you sorta in alcohol use disorder but But Yeah anybody who has a essence you sort of we are in can be a starting point and then can point them in the direction of higher level in the is right. Well while we're still talking on Jason Sikora is our sound engineer and Jason I'm. Hoping you have a couple of questions, you normally have some insight. He catches things more than on everyone thinks house. I certainly do first of all mark. Thank you for for being here, our studio setups a little bit weird with Kobe, and then I'm not in the same room as you guys. So this is a little bit bizarre Guardian Angel. Yeah, boy all sorts of questions I guess I'd like to start by going back to the very. Very beginning addiction is addiction specifically because I think a lot of people have a good grasp on what it is if it's just willpower like what's the mental vs physical the learn versus The genetic. So for somebody who knows nothing about addiction, you kind of explain what that is so so so in I'll I'll try to throughout their and. They can but you know I think there is this. Prevalent mentality right that this is a willpower issue somebody can stop and why don't you racing honest right. But you know you know and I think the the way we diagnose these things by the way is. Through this manual called the DSM right that comes out every twenty or so years and most recently came out or earlier last decade and so. Use. Disorders you know. So we were pulling away from the Term Addiction I. Think I'm very focusing more on use disorders but used sorters are defined now by this. Continue Use of substance that by getting the weeds but by and large is creating significant problems in social rights in financial and family life to the point and even in even in your own healthcare right to the point where even though those things are falling apart right all around you. Use Continues Right in conjunction with. which this actually change down a couple of years ago but in conjunction with. The development of a physical dependence on the medic on the on the substance and so. It's it's it's the continued use despite. Every structure around you kind of falling apart right I, mean to the extent that that's I mean this is when it gets really severe rights I mean it can get really severe but all of a sudden you nourishment, right you're choosing substance over. The basic components of life the and if we want to get into the pathophysiology about it a little bit. Whenever we were born rights our brain. Realizes they to find food to to survive, and so that part of our brain that the reward mechanism says, Hey, find food you'll be rewarded by well these substances right lights up that part of the brain more than things like intimacy things like food right things like community and it's that driving factor, right? It's that. That contracts that increase that change and Neuro Dynamics that causes one to continue to go to that source, and so i. hope that was fair answer. To a great question by the way. Yeah, certainly. Awesome. Thank you. you know well, the interview was going on. I was googling around here and looked up. Just did a Google search for emerging trends in new drugs, and of course, the National Institute of Drug Abuse Website popped up and everything that you've been talking about our headlines on this page pandemic clashes with opioid crisis drug overdose sore amid coronavirus, pandemic do we? It seems like we saw this coming right from. An addiction standpoint from a I, guess a recovery standpoint like we knew that this isolation. It seems anyway was GonNa Cause an upsurge in addictive behaviors in overdosing. was really any guard against this? Is there anything that we could have done I? I don't know if there are things that we could have done I'll tell you that the response from like from Samsa. And the FDA in terms of reducing the barriers to access to care so that things that and were chatting about in terms of of. Not, requiring face to face visits for the initial prescription of of of of pupil north of medications that can reduce the incidence of. Relapse writes all the gateway opened up quite a bit and we haven't seen I was actually listening to a panel in Pittsburgh, I was watching. The other day and they were talking about what? Have you guys seen has anybody seen a negative response to this opening of the valve in terms of providing increase access and you know while you may see some anecdotal evidence of a couple of here and there by and large? It hasn't been seen right by Mars has been more praised to SAM's for knocking those down I think that I don't know if anybody could have set up a scenario or a system in which we could have softened the blow but the response by those who govern access to medication assisted treatment for care was pretty notable I think it could've they could've probably done away with two hundred and seventy-five waiver and said, Hey, listen prescribe away but Yeah. That's an arbitrary number it is but they did make it easier to access and so. Whatever I mean if you're looking at, it didn't quite make sense but I mean you're just looking at. Doctors that are going to do this anyway, what you hit on a really great point and We were chatting about it before you came in the. The. So I think there's last I checked whereas moving down here when I was. Thinking about opening up the practice here, you can go to the SAMSA website you can look they who are wavered clinician shrive medication in Louisiana and Lafayette you can. Create a twenty mile radius forty mile radius and there's some words seventy some odd clinicians some of them aren't prescribing, but they're waiver to do so and so I think by the national data that's out there roughly a little less than one percent of the population, an obese disorder. So technically access to this level of care. Should be more readily available to give them the number of collisions that can't prescribe it in the area. Can we tap into that vein and increase access I don't know I will also say that by and large there is a. Pretty Large. There's a very. This is the. Trajectory change in treatments right we're. I think clinicians who are the old guard who don't identify with this and I more in the data on this rights. I'm following what the Journal of the American Medical Association in February with with by by and large pretty hard evidence that this is one of the. This is the best way to prevent overdose if we're looking to prevent overdoses and prevent. Acute care incidences we need to increase access to maybe not just that's right because buprenorphine everybody Methadone may work better people may want to go now trucks and they work better but we need to increase access to those conversations and those levels of care. So I think get back to your question. The response has been pretty remarkable in the response by the federal. Government increase acquisition by our state government here has been remarkable guy interesting. On that access to care. Either side of it is you know people taking advantage of that access what? How of drug addiction centers been affected by Covid it seems early on there was definitely some layoffs and and things like that. But you know there's there's there's like how we were affected and how. Addicts themselves were were affected, but then what about the senators themselves Are we seeing in a reemergence in this we've seen more hires or we sing layoffs you know that's a that's a really great question, right? Because part of I think the challenge in navigating some of the restrictions that. We had to face with being in these phases were, how do you refer to? A community that is in a tightly closed area right? I do hospitals I do know of of treatment centers that were like small covert outbreaks right and so So. But also tell you that of the. So there's a number of of residential treatment centers in the state. I'M GONNA. Spit ball between one, hundred, two, hundred, right a good number of them right Some of them are great. Some of them are challenges. You know I try to tell our patients that. You can think of this place. You have this mindset it's going to be totally different and whole goal is to get the day one. Day to remember why you're there and get through the first. Week. But only four of them right only four of the hundred or so. Provide. Rehabilitation Services for people who were on people or friend right just crazy if you think of the pandemic nature of his problem. But. Because of the change in referrals, you did see some clinics not just some. My client but you saw treatment centers begin to decrease the numbers begins to layoffs. There's and social workers and so. So other ones respond the opposite way said, we're GONNA try to figure out creative ways to social distance So I think you saw a mixed bag. You saw much every other business venture around right? It depends on the risk that was associated. With that. Business. Owner that clinics. Lens they were looking through the. The what I would say though is we have found it more of a challenge to refer whether it's for obese disorder alcohol disorder it has been a challenge to find. Referral avenues that can expeditiously get people in. And the best illustrate that is if we're in the hospital, we have a limited number of time to get somebody stable and get them to the next level of care right and often times now that next level of care requires the taking Kobe test well. You guys about heart is GonNa Cova test much less a rapid at one, right so That would leave the hospital with either withholding holding the bucket keeping that patient pass their maybe their insurance is paying for so they're just kind of eating at versus. Maybe you go back, home your community we'll back home to your community is not the safest place because all of a sudden you're back in the lines dead and so Yeah. Certainly challenges by and large. one more question in the maybe a comment to. The Google did trends in new drugs. It seems like every year we hear of drug or to that you know kind of the drug that year that people are. has this popped up anyway with synthetics or something else? Is there anything new out there this year that would be keeping an eye on especially for you know loved ones, friends, relatives, man I'm GonNa tell you I read I read an article in the San Francisco Chronicle Today and I see it very very readily in the hospital and Alexandria. I see it's readily in the urine rush means that people are. Doing in the clinic writes Methamphetamine Stimulants. Are So incredibly prevalence. Is. It is. Remarkable and so but because run hearing much about sharing much about it because it's not a substance that will lead to death right? Dysfunction right? I mean to. Families saying I can't even tell you got to be out of the house right but. You don't die from that. You don't know I mean you may you may you miss your teeth? You may lose a lot of healthcare health general rights and you and you can develop secondary. You Dr Secondary Like, for instance, hepatitis that you're shooting up or something that nature. But. But but no methamphetamine by and large is increasingly prevalent and it is leading to more risky behavior rights people are. Making decisions. And so when you get them in the office and giving the hospital and they're back down from that plane and you're having a conversation about what led to I mean. You know mortgage. It gives me this level of feeling that I never ever experienced before, and so we we kind of dive into that have been and we can begin to ask. Some sociological questions as to well this person's living in. A community that is does not have opportunities for employment opportunities for education These people are living on the margins. We're not giving them access to food access to healthcare. and. So at a certain level Jan of Jason Certain level like. I don't want to say you can't blame but I mean we are going to as as creatures find ways to feel better rights or. What is the we're going to volunteer heavy depression. Something that I think we were talking about the access to care issue earlier and how we may have people people insurance now. But we don't have access. Healthier individuals are going to strive and try to make their lives. Their families lives, their communities, lives better rights we know. From some data in states where there are more clinicians because there are less barriers that there are less pockets of. Desperation posit less less desperate community pockets. It's up to this the government state government local governments federal government to create avenues for this access. And then us to provide it and let. Goodwill of community that we know and love right develop what we love. We shouldn't have as many barriers as we do. I'm a firm believer of. Healthcare should university should have access to basic healthcare. Two nods is is criminal. And so. I've been fortunate I think over the past couple of years. To really see that firsthand that if you just give people access. Not, just medication, right but even to just a conversation where the barriers thrown down. And I may not be able to give them an answer at the moment but I can say, Hey, you know what? I. Hear You. I hear you and I recognize your struggle and I can't do anything in the moment about it. I can take some of the stress off by you just venting right it's amazing how pathetic that could be right and it it just all of a sudden gives. Somebody a little bit of hope. Maybe. They won't use maybe they may put an extra application and maybe they may take that job at one place that may lead to the next thing. The next thing that all of a sudden. Realised right. It's. It's remarkable when access is given beautiful. Excellent. Well, that leads into the couple comments I had. Anybody there you know suffering from use disorder Dick you would want to call it and you need help certainly seek it out. Without a doubt in and start that that path whether it's seeing the therapist going to treatment or Whatever. It may be certainly like just start now and then for those who People out there who knows somebody who who's going to this support is huge and you'd mentioned fellowship early in the interview anybody who's you know a stable recovering recovering addict fellowship is huge I mean you you went through it and to to lend a hand somebody else who's WHO's jumping into this they need that they need that support especially in these times of of cobaine isolation. So just a few comments and reflections on and everything that's been said was far. So thank you. Thank you, chase. Appreciate it and I, know we've little bit long on time but I meant to ask you any thoughts on the seven five, Oh eight Zip Code Y. of all the areas of the parish that would have the highest because that's like the most wealthy area you know. So. I think this leaves for opportunity for speculation but but more of I think we can talk about. What I'm is always I think the elephant in the room in these conversations and that is what are perceptions are of People suffering from addiction disorder and what the reality is. Right the reality is like your brother that your mom that your neighbor, right? The person you're in jogging group with right. We. I think what's really unique about our culture here is that we love to celebrate together and so because we love to celebrate and beat together we oftentimes. Feel. And is very common in the south. Right? You feel. You. Feel this need to hold Dan your pain and not the. Fellowship in share the struggles that you're going through anything. What real realizing that is that this is much more prevalent than you think and went possibly. Autopsies are being done on. People with means possible. Yeah. So I my fear is that you know the reality of this is much more the overdoses. Deaths are much more prevalent than what? Corners data we used to believe right they can only. They can only assess what they they have to work with so. Well marked Aclu of access behavioral health and Recovery Thank you for this. Very eye opening stimulating conversation again, your. Access behavioral health is in the oil center in Lafayette and What is the website again please. People can access us by. So we're on facebook very easy to get there the the addresses three, one, five, Auburn Boulevard, the oil center. You can email us for employment that INFO at Axis. BE HR DOT. com. Thing that's killing me right here and I should know this right is that. We do have a phone number of asking it has been as the worst paid in the show notes. There you go with. The We accessible vote yeah. That's why we have our iphones and we just don't have to memorize numbers so. I really I really wanted to take a second just thanks for the platform have a conversation I think you know. We miss this right in Jason I were talking before the show. About how easy it is to connect whenever we have platforms to be able to talk. About our topics. Thanks again, I love discovered Lafayette gives us an opportunity and you know this wouldn't be possible without our sponsors I, do wanNA. Thank Barry Bank. Lafayette General. Hell. Rally marketing, and of course, Raider, in a particular Jason Sikora who mix the sound and makes it sound professional raider has been. Longtime support, our podcast and very grateful for their continuing partnership and of course to our listeners, you can hear this interview on our website discover Lafayette Dot net. We have this one in over one hundred, sixty other interviews or even better. You can go on your advice and just you your podcast APP and subscribe to discover Lafayette there's charge in Libya delivered every Friday to your device. So Half discography this is John. Swift thank you so much for listening.

Lafayette Alexandria Kobe Heroin Louisiana Medicare Lafayette. Lafayette General Health Tucson Lafayette Parish Coroner Arizona methamphetamine Jason buprenorphine United States engineer partner Alexandra People Hospital Iberia Bank Dot Com
Ruffin Rodrigue of Ruffinos

Discover Lafayette

47:18 min | 1 year ago

Ruffin Rodrigue of Ruffinos

"This is John Swift and you're listening to discover Lafayette podcast dedicated to the people and rich culture of Lafayette the gateway to South Louisiana. We tape in the offices of Raider a hands on. It service provider that integrates all of your needs for advanced technical support. Effective communication options in cybersecurity raiders motto. Is You just want it to work? We understand please. Visit Raiders Solutions Dot Com for more information. I'd like to thank Iberia. Bank our premier sponsor. They support our community in so many ways and their dynamic team is committed to serving the banking needs of clients in this region and throughout the southeastern United States. Iberia Bank offers the resources of a national bank with the personal touch of a community bank. Please visit Iberia Bank Dot Com for more information the generosity of Lafayette General Health. Also makes this podcast possible and we thank them for. Being a premier sponsor as Acadian is largest nonprofit regional health system. Lafayette General Health is committed to restoring maintaining and improving health in the communities. It serves for more information visit. Lafayette General Dot Com. Our guest today is rough rodrigue owner of her feet house on the river in Lafayette as well as refuse in Baton Rouge and Rufino catering in downtown Baton Rouge all. Sec Guard who played at Lsu from Nineteen eighty-six their nineteen eighty-nine roughened has received many accolades for his work in the hospitality industry including Louisiana's marketer of the year in two thousand sixteen and restaurant tour of the year by the Louisiana Restaurant Association. In two thousand fifteen now ruffin. Everybody has a story but you have a really good story. Thank you for joining us on discover Lafayette and thank you for being so patient with me as I tape us from my home Thank you for for having me Made me feel pretty good about myself after you Introduced me like well. You have a lot to share. And of course we're talking during the corona virus that you've been through a lot of you've been in the hospitality industry following a successful college football career. So why don't we start with you? Know your background and kind of lead us to where you are today. I was born and raised until whose parish graduated in one thousand nine hundred eighty five One tell us you kind of followed. My Dad's footsteps and my dad was was a was a great player for the Tigers. In the early sixties. You know serving the Chinese banded and all those famous teams they had back then and same. Same name was referenced. Rodrick senior is Rodrick senior. I came in eighty five and defensive player in high school and then switched to offense when I gotTa tell us you. Red Shirted in nineteen eighty five and a first year of eligibility was eighty six and that was the year with coach. Bill on We WanNa Sec Championship and then eighteen eighty seven. We had our best team winning in the One the lower bowl game to South Carolina and up now number three in the country in one thousand nine hundred eighty eight. We were Sec Championship again and eighty nine ad. Happy in an essay stadium. Yeah I just ate. She was just so cool. It was you know when as big as it is today with both the end zone closed and all the sweets and all you look up now and it's just it's a monster but yeah the fans the people the all the all the wonderful things I got to do need for tasks to the great career. Had you grown up going to the Games was your dad That he continued to go to the football games. He didn't miss. I don't think he's the one in college. Your mom. They've they went on the road they had a crew they they had. They had a good time. Good time to be a tiger fan me on the Road Games. And all the fun they had so we They didn't fit miss anything and you would think we wear. How STAYED ONE YEAR? Interviewed him in the stands. Oh Gosh so. There was a lot of fun. Yeah Yeah so you graduated in marketing. Thank you tell me I did the build the school and graduated in Spring of Nineteen Ninety With a degree in marketing and really didn't know what to do with it so But I knew I had a little football left and The World League of American football which in being the NFL year game call. And then I went. I went to play play in London and Barcelona and include Minnie and all that had a had a really fun time for year. Then got hurt. Montreal in pretty much ended my career and came back home and went to Went to work in the In the industry Smock beverage here. It's it's sorta like Schilling of Lafayette night and Worked FOR THEM. In marketing and sales and at the note a lot of people did advance really had a lot of fun for about five years and then moved onto the show. The restaurant industry After my good friend. Tj MORAN WHO's the First Franchisee? Ruth's Chris Steak House called in and wanted to open up a restaurant with at the time. Coach Gerry Dinardo whose Italian in New York had a lot of success at Lsu so we used his name and head a lot of fun with open an Italian restaurant but he wasn't. Success won the field after that in the prior. So that's when we bought his share out in Change Nature to Fino's. I think it was two thousand. Two thousand two thousand your idea. Well I'll give you an idea. I mean there's a lot of customers that claim they. It was pretty easy transition. Yeah pretty easy transition being with my name which is Cajun of Cajun descent. Change into an Italian kind of just had an oath to the the rough. And then you get you know some of the most popular battalion wine in the world is made it made it real easy and I want to mention teach Moran was not just the first Franchisee of routes but he also is the T. J. I mean I know. He's recently deceased but he's the TJ TJ ribs and he's just iconic so this must have been exciting to be working with people that were the best in their field and that's why I got into the restaurant business. I wouldn't have done. It is at a mentor. Like like him. He was the best he was successful with with Chris. All around the country. He is not mentioned. Tj Ribs huge success and he had nympheas Mexican restaurant which is also which was a huge success. Niassa failures too but majority of his business was just was fantastic and it was a good run for him and I learned all the principles of how to do visits the railway and how to treat people way in in the hottest business probably in the world. That's what I was thinking. You know so many of them successful restaurant tours that we know of everything they've done hasn't been a success but they just kept on moving yeah. It was good transition from the beer industry to to to restaurants it. Was you know like more hours a lot? More work let learning I was. I was young I was I was thirty. I think when a when a transition over and You know twenty to twenty two years later still striving to make it better every day. Which was T- tomato? Say you started in Baton Rouge because that's where you're living. And that's out on on highland road or off well. How inroad is so historic in Long Ghost? Wellish she but it ends That airline highway near the interstate. So we're right right off the between airline highway and the interstate off Holland road going towards New Orleans right ano- through the years What what year did that open? Nineteen okay I know through the years. ended up. You've had a partner to you at Tj in a partner and then now you're the the sole proprietor jemma partner BNG partnered chef. We we bought TJ ten years ago when a almost two years ago. I My partner Wanted to get into consulting business Chef which is his real talent. So I bought out his his Half of the business and never looked back. Are you in chef? Also know how are you know being from South Louisiana? I love to cook the perfect business because aboard from timid Oh that has no interest in hunting fishing which is which is odd ballplayer. Well most of my most my ballplayer player friends with diggers hunters. And fishermen you. Can you could find My Dad really never did. It always just work to live. My Dad was in a funeral business. You know eleven years old realize how much I dislike baseball. I think when you we didn't have the diagnosis bag number the AD kinda thing Sitting in a in a in a baseball dugout and united in your patient They don't have any medicine forward. Believe me it was so my dad said come to work with me every summer from eleven years old was till I went to Lsu. I Dug Graves in Saint. Mary Parish of Morgan City area and That's true the true meaning of work getting up early. You know as a youngster and driving to another city and getting a cemetery with a shovel in my hand and digging in hundred plus plus temperatures you learn a lot also learn a lot about By death in the mud sorrow and so it kind to pass to to to liberal more happy joyful life Which is hospital the industry. Yeah I didn't realize that about here. I know you're friends with talk. Rides right is that it's a friend from way back or is he. I think he had three reason Jane to the time and I had. I was just a manager here. That House for Fino's twenty twenty two years either right twenty one year twenty two years ago when I heard AIDS. Yeah just wondered if that was yeah. We had an instant is one of those Those those friendships when you when you first meet somebody you know. It'd be lifelong friendship. A has been for us. Yeah well you know. I want to mention Jim Doray before we get off on another topic Jim I know as a coach for you Through the vestige And now he's an executive coach and he recommended that we do this. Podcast you can share your whole story and He's spoken so highly of you your dedication to the industry and You know it is including today hanging on with the corona virus and what it's done to the restaurant industry so I just wanted to let you maybe talk about some of your early career and I don't know if you've ever been through times like this did some of the oil bust in the past Affect you and your business or we're all able to sidestep some of the hard times that we're having we. We had our challenges until I opened up. Lafayette I knew. Nothing about the oil and gas industry Even being from thibodeau and we're home as with a lot of family in it. My my uncle was the vice president of BP Homa and there's a there's A. I know so many in that industry But it when we first in the restaurant industry bad rouges pretty out of the Exxon. You know refinery batteries more chemical petrochemical area. That is lowest prices. Help them from when I hear more heard and Lsu's huge so whenever we have you know that we went to the hurricanes which would which will pretty brutal on the does Katrina was actually positive for tax. Were the first restaurant in from New Orleans. And in most of the the the the wealthier New Orleans that a moved were able to move to Baton Rouge and when the restaurant is a baton rouge as the Country Club. Yana Santamaria and always. He's really nice homes and they just got bought up all these New Orleans millionaires. So my restaurant actually did well. You know I mean we. Baton Rouge exploded and then The DP all spill. We actually did one on. That didn't get any money from that. Because the we didn't we didn't More business because of the station's people to go to the beach in that Beach House so they stayed back But we've had our had our challenges you know we Restaurant in Lafayette flooded in sixteen. That was that was. That was tough on us. in the bar flooded. I really do a lot of work with the community supported us in registered behind us and got it back open. And then you know the only gas My Buddy Jamie Howard former Teammate Formula All player called me and said is going to be bad. You know this whole rolling all prices coming down. It's going to be bad for low while expense accounts. GonNa dry up. And I really didn't knew what he was talking about but I I didn't see it being that bad but he got really really low for a while but we worked hard. You worked on the healthcare industry and pharmaceutical parties in in different things in it business. You know it's it's it's not only gas expense accounts those those those guys are role in. It's a big business but we've we've been able to hire great managers and you keep the ball going. It's just been you know fun. Place to be with outdoor seating in the beauty of the river. Gorgeous bar really looking forward to hopefully reopening Soon to Get people out of their cabin fever up and I'd like to take a break if we can. I want to after this break. Go into what's going right now. In Lafayette and some things. You know the struggles in what you'd like to see. I'd like to pause In thank rally marketing for sponsoring a new addition to our podcast discover Lafayette's past rally. Marketing is a full service digital marketing. Agency that can assist you with marketing automation content development search engine optimization and show you how to use social media to turn into moneymaker for your business. Our friends at Raleigh marketing are there to help you navigate the maze of all the latest ways to market online effectively. Please Visit Rally Marketing Dot Com for more information and now for the moment and Ruffin. I wanted to look back on the history of Chameleon Boulevard since you're situated there. I don't know if you're familiar with all the sped Back in nineteen fifty to the city of Lafayette recognized. That Pin Hook Road. Couldn't handle all of the traffic. The next twenty nine years feasability studies were conducted to determine the best placement of a grudge over the Romanian to effectively move traffic. And I can tell you as an aside when I moved here in eighty three I. I couldn't figure out how to get around laugh so finally just to share this with you. In nineteen eighty-one there was a route study by domain Zaba own associates recommending the Camelia Boulevard route on August fourth a bond issue which included the Chameleon Boulevard extension was voted and approved on but then a citizens group called save. Our subdivision was formed to oppose the construction on March eighteenth. Nineteen eighty-three mayor. Douglas Strap announced his recommendation to the city council. That quote we construct a four lane river crossing at the table of art on the south side of Lafayette so environmental and Engineering Studies were done citizens. Continue to protest In one thousand nine hundred five the Camilla Boulevard project was included in a bond referendum and approved. Lafayette voters fast forward to Nineteen ninety-three alternatives. Were still being looked at but in April of ninety three the report recommended construction and more environmental assessments were done in nineteen ninety. Six Lafayette Consolidated Council adopted a resolution directing that the committee boulevard bridge become a top priority in ninety nine and January contractors began moving homes from the corridor in two thousand one in August. The contract for construction of bridge and the section of Roadway between settlers trace boulevard and Cambridge. Dry was awarded in on September eighth two thousand three a ribbon. Cutting ceremony was held to declare the bridge officially open. So you probably were not aware of all of us not being you know in the Lafayette area but this was a major controversy. And right where you're situated in. Once it opened people just went. Oh this is nice you know. Yeah so you're situated right there in the middle of a great area of Lafayette and yet I know things have kind of come to a halt as far as dining in and the whole restaurant industry if we can pick back up our conversation about what's going on nail. Yeah that was. We actually did a ribbon. Cutting the on the tenth anniversary two in fourteen at the restaurant to to to to celebrate the the bridge which has just been huge for Local Denison in Lafayette Transit and opening up. Wait easier ways to get to young's Ville two just anywhere get anywhere and all the other places that just exploded so it was the biggest thing I think ever happened yet looking back how it was a to to to where it is now is river ranch perception when we first got there was you know it. It's the best community or mixed development. Whatever they call it. I've I've ever been in still today going around country in different places. I'm like just blown away by the way they built. It is just perfectly done and Steve. The architect and Robert Gaggle right here. It's the quality safe. It's it's it's just really well done so in. Every body told us the best location you know anywhere by the river and as we were lucky enough to to buy a coup to Sean New Orleans. Out and twenty thousand out to be. I think they will. They will they went. Does this for like nine months. Gosh when they knew they read the writing on the wall and and being that the Donald Link was a friend and In in his father in law's would come the restaurant Baton Rouge. They knew that we would be able to to make it work so we bought by the mom out and it was a huge success. Difference if you can touch on that what did you bring? You know to turn that around. What was it that well Rodrick brought it out? We'll restaurants restaurants differ so many different ways personality. Wise culture will. What's your message? What are you? What are you trying to achieve? And we headed down rouge with something Special Ed With Lsu you know. The local ties the energy that we brought music The lie all the all the things that that that I brought all the are the intangibles or the outside of the food. It's more about the energy in the fun. And the lighting the way we set up tables and the way we set up a private parties in US. Energizing the place and we brought. We brought that to a place that just whether they're the way looked at it was. It was all about the food shop driven. They WanNa Kinda hippie kind of place and just you know you have to. You have to. You have to match the community. That just didn't did not do that. They didn't have a good friendship with with the community. You really have to distinguish yourself. Do you know every town has has multiple different restaurants. You have so many places you go you see one time. I laugh yet. It's different as were I noticed is the most restaurants or casual dining Many white tablecloth restaurants. And that's where we are but we'll white tablecloth but we're also fun and and kind of kind of a casual fund fine dining if you WANNA call it which I knew there was a niche for in Lafayette people. Were looking for a place to call their own. Stephanie Cox such a great job at Ala Fonda in history of of their barber their bar so small you know is just. It's it's it's you know. People were looking for a place to meet with large watch parties and we hit that. We hit that niche and it was It was fun because of the people that I knew in the beginning that we would. You know hurt. Their does is like Charlie. Good to the Charlie. Jeez it but he reached out and I became what I did from a from a marketing standpoint because when I bought it in nothing was January. We didn't open till may look between January and May I lived in Lafayette. You know I basically you've got an apartment. And when every and let people went to charity events what to political events met every new a lot of people already for my connections and we had a following from are bad restaurant but it was it was really It was really just kind of a an easy transition for me because from tip and I have the the Cajun heritage and it was it was fun and the grand opening was huge in the next few years until the gas. Kinda take a little bit Just I don't know of a restaurant that had had an opening that anywhere. I've never seen anything like it. So but the good thing. Is You know even with a with a struggling industry when you find good managers Like I have with Christmas Lotto Greg Harmon Katie. Gd's and Legionella Chefs Estevan. And James. I have a crew that this is so amazing. They keep the consistency in the culture in the funding. The whole deal right that were you know. It's easy to t t to to keep it going so his on staff right now with the shutdown. I've kept almost salary the the people I just mentioned who are on salary so matters. I have my salary managers and chefs in Lafayette Salary. Managers and chefs in the actual takeout. Business is able to pay for their their salaries. You know we'd get into the little. The government help out and all that but but the majority of our our casual right now is takeout with is a lot. It's only maybe ten percent of the sales. Were doing less but it still. It's still enough to help them out. And you know. Our employees are on unemployment. But they're ready to get off and come back to work which we have to figure out how to get them to work to do because we can't open for business the biggest mess if your staff is Servers that are Contract right I mean they're just hourly term. Let a part-time college. You know to college driven market like Baton Rouge you will. You will support. We support you. Support US and we. That's the majority of our of our service. Staff is students and from the area so they may live with their parents. Also they doing doing okay is just. They want to go back to work. Yeah just sitting in their their apartments our homes and nothing to do all day to play. Xbox have beer palm parties or whatever it is it gets old and they they WANNA give they WANNA get back and start having fun more working with people would. They would their born into hospitality industry. I'm even mentioned to me that you're baton. Rouge restaurant is actually busier at this point. Just because I guess the economy's different in Baton Rouge Big Bear. It's there but it's not as big as our economy restaurant kind of flight. The other one is at the weights ron or are they separate. It's Dan Rutz. Helping are more than anything else right now because of the The amount of sales are able to do takeout wise Lafayette has some big nights. But it just you could see the you know what I mean yesterday with the old down a negative for the first time ever whatever this is GonNa be a tough night you know and it was. I mean people are. People are are are getting anxious about their future and their livelihood. And you know they're able to spend and they look at US wearing river ranch. We we buy the best food that service and all that even though we have amazing prices right now with the with the family meals and all the things that we're doing is still perceived as a as a higher expense restaurant that people people are holding onto their dollars right now which I understand. I love your menu. I was looking at the family. Take OUT FOR FOUR. Some great dummy options. I mean this is fantastic. Yeah the Seafood Aaron Cheney. I've never had that thought. God this is probably the time to try things like that that you know. Just to to perk up Middle of the week. But can you talk about what's going on locally You'd mentioned to me that The local restaurant association is looking ahead. you guys work together as a as a team when you look at the industry the region absolutely. We've been a part of the restaurant association from the get-go in Always very involved in the the government part of it at lobbying and all the stuff that we need to do to to make sure industry strong because South Louisiana's known for anything it's known for hospitality restaurants and Food and service in who we are and you know Wong great restaurant town Baton Rouge Lafayette. Give a lot of great talent. The that utilize wonderful Gulf seafood which we have an advantage over most states in you know with Lafayette. It's it's like I said you have so many wonderful casual seafood places and just you know. We're all friends we were together. Try to try to. We all have the common goal of taking care of people in in being able to to help the lives of employees. You know through through sales through Ron and the whole deal and then Restaurant Association is there for us for for that. So that's been that's been great. It's just with the you mentioned the the All and you know the the gas prices and stuff like that even the hub city of Lafayette in healthcare. And even though right now it's hard because of the the doctors can't do these extra extra work right now and that's really see. Take that you throw in on Gaz being down on that people scared and they don't know what you know. They don't know what the future holds horns so there's this hold onto their money they're gonna go to grocery stores and buying cheap dear she whisky and food and and go home and just hunker down until this thing thing opens up and even though we are essential restaurant. That's why we're doing the family meal and IT GIVES PEOPLE OF WAITING. At least they can't get out and dine but the loosening get out up a great high meal not had to do the dishes you enjoy even though so different from being in the actual restaurant and the energy and the music the fun still able to enjoy a little bit of a favorite favorite Takeouts Ernie favorite dishes. You'd recommend take us take out is is is is harder than people think it's You can't refi stake if it goes to the house and it's and it's not good writer so the family meals with design for perfection of of of the meal. So that's why they're working so good. Any anything. Chicken travels well any of our Italian dishes. Lasagna's row easies meatball. They're all easy to take out because of the consistency of stakes. A little harder because of the temperatures and you know veal's hard because it doesn't. It doesn't really stay. Warm gets cold fast so listen different different menu items but there are often passes so I I never had used. Waiter you know I just like going in a place. If I'm going to eat a fine meal I you know now. We can't do it on typical day. I just find that the experience is really. What makes a meal special when you're eating out at your place or some of the other fine places in Lafayette? How are y'all looking ahead to these guidelines and now you tell me you're serving on a task force that Senator Page Cortez you know the legislative task force. It's looking at reopening. What are you all thinking is going to happen? It's going to be doable with tables being spread apart. And it is really the biggest conundrum out there. I was watching some of the national news right. Now that's the big question is the P P P money the payroll protection deal supposed to help. Small businesses put a lot of restaurants are looking at it as you know we have to meet the seventy five percent requirement which is almost impossible to bring back employees number one. We don't have any business to a lot of the morning. Unemployment is just. It's really really hard and you know we're going to have to a lot of restaurants are gonNA need money to do real opened up a new restaurant the by product yet train. Do you know about linens to so many different aspects of our business that once you cut it off like that. It's hard to get back in. I heard predictions yesterday where they're thinking. More than fifty percent of the New Orleans restaurants would not come back Osh. You know it's really you know. Think about wow you know why we go to New Orleans and I don't know how it's going to be in baton rouge or Lafayette but it's hard. I mean you had small I mean so so you have to have six six feet apart between tables and you had to six feet apart at the bar. Fino's in La in Lafayette River won't be as hard bar is huge. It's very long the bartenders state ways. They way away from each other or sixty and outdoor seating which we may have different roles for so in. My dining rooms are so big I can separate tables. Shouldn't be that big of an issue. Look you take a little smaller place that maybe seats you know. Sixty people in very tiny inside. How do you? How do you separate tables six feet apart? They're they're about a foot apart right now and you only have so many. So it's it's there's a lot we had to discuss the big thing. Is I tell you just by talking to a bunch of my friends especially girls. Don't WanNa wear masks and restaurants and they don't want their server wear masks which I understand number one. You have to eat drank. You have to you know you're you're using your mouth. You have to listen to you surgery. You know that's GonNa be a big. That's going to be a big issue. It's not fun it's the one that's the worst thing where people will be like. Why let restaurants open and you have to work mass? Where we understand that the the viral thing but I think the only way really Janet until they can get the FDA approved antibody test testing. That's the only way I think restaurants will really be able to open with some confidence. Well we could say the Had the Sorority added in the people that can go out to eat and all that. That's the only really really see because because all they have they implement all those rules laws insane which would figure it out. I don't know how much how much actually be able to do. You know we do a lot of private parties in Baton Rouge so you can't have more than ten people. Most of my private parties are twenty or thirty people to hop between the tables and yeah. It's a social gathering and it's GonNa be it's GonNa be it's GonNa be a struggle. There's no doubt about it but you know we have. We have to make it work because that's who we are in this Task Force. Ruffin that you were telling me about senator. Cortez it's all different industries right. It's not just has your different businesses one of the only restaurant tours actually on them on the task force. It's yeah car dealers petrochemical Owen. You guys from from all over the the surface. Oh that's why I'm looking forward to to have put my input in it because you know I'm I'm going to be representing the largest employer in the state when it comes to non non governmental restaurants. That's reemploy more than anybody task. You two are you able to get seafood like I. I've talked to Jim Dawson Frank. Randle and others in the seafood's out there but with the market being off. Are you able? You've been able to get suppliers to get your. What would the little we need? The thing is is. We're not selling bulk. Like like Franken him with the ball crawfish and all that. We're just doing it to go food so we're not using up a whole lot. The once we open up in demand comes unless they had employed the seafood's out there. It's just getting the people to catch it and sell it and all that but it's setting like I went over to Randall's bringing frank back some albums. He had loaned me because we get interviewed and he wanted to show me all his. You know the pass things he had done. One of the fishermen had like five thousand pounds of I don't know if it was snap herbs some some really great seafood and he didn't have any place to put it like it was there was there was no market nowhere to go and I think frank helped helped him. Some people could by five or ten pounds and drive through that but I just thought how many people was this affecting down the chain from you saw the trip. The trickle down effect is crazy. Goes all over the place? And that's that's going to be the hardest part is you know we're GonNa want to get back into business we're GONNA want sales people coming out but other people who have money to to come out and die where places celebration. It's GonNa be people looking to do birthdays from a month ago. Anniversaries from a month ago and come out and celebrate. We'll do a little bit of that and they can have special nights but the consistency of you know getting out there doing business. You know it's GonNa take time it's just gonNA wrong and that we're all GonNa that's why we need the help from the government Own Whoever to to get us back on our feet and not just in a in a in a payroll plan. But we're GONNA need some money to reopen two by two byproduct to we were forced to shutdown. Were our our our our cash flow completely. Got Shut off for us to. Yeah even the most conservative people. I think the government does have a place that may not agree on everything. But we can't do this ourselves. I mean there's a lot of it up to the banks. Would big banks struggled this would? This is loans raw the small ones. Iberia was fantastic. You know they had the most of their stuff that they were incredible. You know so. It's it's we used to be with chase and we switch in. God we would probably still with chase guy knows where we'd be so it's GonNa it's GonNa be a struggle for everybody you know. Open up this. This other money is again. That's that tiki money. That really doesn't help our industry. Our industry is going to need. You know a nationwide maybe worldwide a nationwide. Russia industry is going to need grants. They're gonNA need. We're GONNA need money to all the soul food. All the you know just reopening getting people back to work training all that stuff you know we number one. We want to pay our people. Which would the people to? We're GONNA reopen and they're going to have a job we got to be able to run our business and you don't have any money to to buy seafood. We'll be able to sell it or haven't been able to pay your rent or your note for a few months. Yeah well is there anything that any advised or anything you want to share as Ricardo come into conclusion? Anything that we didn't discuss. Now you know. The thing is getting on supporting local local restaurants local businesses. That are in operation. Even though we're not able to dine in continue to do take out at the places that are offering it. I don't know how many right now. In Lafayette of stopped or continued a lot of them switched over to the ball raw fish. We haven't staying with our menu and trying to support the community that way just supporting the local restaurants in because of because we. We can't get through this on the plate. The the people that can't get through this because catch and just lack of desire. They're just going to close down. You can have a lot of a lot of people out of jobs you know is continuing to get it back so culture gone all. Yeah well thank you so much. I want to end on a very positive note and I wanted to share something. I read about you in bet you made with your friend Todd Graves. I hope this is accurate. But I was doing background research and I saw that you've got about Lsu doing well last season you WanNa talk about that. You bet money because we were we were we were in Las Vegas for a A real estate convention. And you know todd always wants to was in. May So todd said go and this make some bets so we win this when a Great Sports Book. I forget which hotel we were. I wish we were in Caesar's something but we were about to leave so I went down and I put thousand dollars on the saints to win the Super Bowl a thousand dollars on Lsu to win a national championship. And I was looking at one thousand dollars on. Joe Burrowed when the Heisman and for some reason they could at this one place. They didn't have that up. Although it was available it was two hundred to one. And and Made the too bad. But I couldn't find out I had to go to Caesar's to make the other one. We were leaving and I had to get back. I had this thing so I thought I'd made it in did not have been two hundred thousand dollar is when we end up winning. Lsu which was twenty four to one one twenty four thousand and don't think Joe Osha on chose a charity To give it to that we wanted to to donate so it was just a fun deal for. I believe me I would love to cap the twenty four thousand split it but when your best friend's a billionaire young it's a lot easier for him just as you know. Let's give it a charity. Which was my idea anyway. So you have friends like that she's roughing Rodrigue. I WanNa thank you so much for Again being so patient with me you know you couldn't tell from your voice but I had a little difficulty at the beginning and I love doing this podcast and I really have great appreciation for people that helped me recorded and mixed because it's it's not that it's hard but it's just not the you know the the top thing my skill set so i WanNa thank you people that help make this podcast possible. Jason Sikora at Raider will be mixing the tape and of course our sponsors Beria Bank Lafayette General and Rally Marketing. I WanNa thank them all for making this possible and I want to thank our listeners. For being so loyal you can get us anywhere you get your podcast Or you can go to our website. Discover Lafayette Dot Net and not only Pine Reckon Rodrigues interview but the over one hundred forty interviews with cow it so great way to learn more about our community behalf of discovery on this Thursday part.

Lafayette Baton Rouge Lafayette Lsu United States ruffin New Orleans South Louisiana Fino Lafayette General Health Lsu Rodrick Tigers football South Carolina Senator Page Cortez Iberia Bank Dot Com Louisiana Restaurant Associati Lafayette marketing and sales
Troy Wayman, IMPACTing Business and Community

Discover Lafayette

34:12 min | 1 year ago

Troy Wayman, IMPACTing Business and Community

"This is John Swift and you're listening to discover Lafayette a podcast dedicated to the people full and rich culture of Lafayette the gateway to South Louisiana we record in the offices of Raider solutions which offers a complete fleet of it solutions ends for businesses of all sizes raiders motto. Is You just wanted to work. We understand if you're wondering if writer can help your business please visit Raider solutions dot com. I'd like to also thank Iberia Bank for its support of Discovery Lafayette founded in eighteen eighty seven Iberia Bank is the largest bank based based in Louisiana and is headquartered right here in Lafayette with three hundred twenty five combined locations throughout the south. They offer the resources of a national bank with the personal final touch of a community bank. Please visit Iberia Bank Dot Com for more information. Today's guest is Troy Wayman One K. Tiana's president I and CEO one Katyusha is a business led privately funded economic development organization serving nine parish area in south Louisiana with with over nine hundred member companies individuals. It's been a very busy time for one A. Between hosting candidate forums for the October twenty nine thousand nine elections and having Dr Actor Laurence Scott Deliver his annual Louisiana Economic Outlook. They've also just launched a five year fifteen million dollars strategic campaign impact the campaign for one Katyusha designed to sharpen its ability to capture new in expanding business opportunities and propel Acadian of forward so choi and welcome to discover Lafayette Jenga Beer yeah so this is our second time beyond the podcast and since you've been on there's been a lot going John and I I'm really proud to see one CAITRIONA digging deeper and deeper into so many areas of our communities economic life and personal alive because I think you're working to improve our quality of life as we attract jobs and opportunity so why don't we start with what you think is most important I mean you've been busy this past mine hosting events you wanNA touch on that. We've had we've had a tremendous amount of election. Programming related to obviously the elections coming up October twelfth early voting is open now we do encourage people to vote I like to always tell people you can't complain if you don't vote right because you know you you get what you what you deserve if if you're not gonNA decide on the candidates best for the community so go out and vote we we we really want you to do that. You know we don't endorse candidates. We take the opportunity to educate eight people on with candidates stand for take the opportunity to educate the candidates on what are robust business lead public policy agenda is we we want people to know where the business community stands and what they see as the things that are required for them to be successful in Acadian so we're very excited about that. We've had the opportunity to to to reach out to all the candidates and across the region the majority of the candidates across the region and then we've also partnered with some of our local chambers in in other parishes to to help them with their election programming in their areas so we've been we've been very very involved in the election programming across the region. It's one of the things that we we've kind of taken a different tack. I'll say you know not endorsing sourcing candidates but that doesn't mean we're not political. We've been very involved the political process because we recognize how important that political process is this will also be involved moving forward especially with the next legislative session as we have in the sessions in the past on policy issues issues that they're gonNA be very important to the success of our region and the success of a education and health care and other things that are very critical to us here in the Katie and I I I want to commend you on the events you you hosted I know my family went to the Mayor Presidents Forum and that got us on the quest to go to more forms because we found being there in person is just different than watching it on TV you know I don't know if it's the energy in the room. ooh the great ambiance said they see a downtown Lafayette but we really felt that we knew we knew a little bit more about each candidate to help us make up our the mind and the way it was handled. I thought KT see moderating it. It was just so professional we've since gone to gubernatorial and actually actually went to a second mayor President Forum because I just enjoyed you know I I enjoyed the the I guess the feeling of seeing their your passion because we really have some passionate candidates that are running this year so we're fortunate that we have a lot of communities don't have that don't have the when you have five candidates that have stepped up and for different things we really had a whole spectrum at choose from but I agree with you about seeing the events live because number one so not only do you get to see or hear the response of the candidate that you may that may be answering the question but you get to see kind of the body language and the and the responses of the other candidates yeah so it's it's interesting gives you a different perspective on things when you see it live but they were very professional and I you know I think very civil and we're very proud of that. It was it was you know and that's what that's what we want to encourage. We want to encourage a civil conversation civil debate. It's not about taking cheap shots and being ugly. I mean too much. We get too much of that on national level. We don't need that on the local level. Well I hope people. Are you know thinking about early. Voting we went last Saturday the first day and it was packed and I think that's a good sign that will we'll have hopefully we'll have a good turnout a lot on the ballots that people need to get prepared and maybe take some notes before they go in because it's it was a little surprising the number breath things head on it is a very lengthy ballot and hope that people the people get past just the gubernatorial race and actually get done into the ballot and make sure they pay attention to those local races that are that are that are happening and and for from school board to the Parish Council to the legislative districts we have a tremendous amount of legislative turnover and Acadian this year so we've got a lot of term limited representatives and we we need to make sure that we were picking the right representatives to go to go and play so those folks seaboard constitutional amendments research before thank goodness because I wouldn't have known at least about the constitutional amendments. I had to really look up. What does this mean well? It wouldn't be an election here without constitutional more minutia one another note you also just hosted Dr Laurence Scott who gives an annual Economic Louisiana Economic Outlook and I know he gave and outlook for our region. Can you share what he's anticipating will happen yeah. It's always a little nerve wracking. When you have an economist speak because you're you're not one hundred percent sure what they're going to say and you don't want them to deliver that devastating punch which no they're they're factual but he actually had some very positive had a very positive outlook for area? He thinks that we're gonNA leave the state in job growth and we have for a while which is is really really interesting if you if you look at the statistics on it it it's and we've taken kind of a deep dive into some of it as to you know we lost the number of oil and gas jobs. Were hoping those jobs come back. You know the only gas industry so important to area. Were always going to have a certain amount of dependence on it. you know we worked to to to grow jobs there but we also worked to diversify the economy so that we don't suffer as many ebbs and flows of the economy based on on the price of oil and gas but he's projecting some some positive news for the gas sector which you know we we think is great but also in other sectors as well you know we've had some growth if you look just like some new industries aviation sector copter coming in here and Leonardo and their nouncement here in Acadian a- and then obviously we've got It related companies we got strong companies that are growing I mean were sitting in the office of one here right here solutions. CGI and CGI across the street. It's got four hundred employees are on their way to eight hundred so it's it's really exciting to see those things happening and of course the healthcare industry you look at Elliot see in the growth they've had looked at she marker clinical partners in the growth that they've had look at the the the most recent news with general and Austrian and the and the merger there and the fact that offer is going to be putting another I believe the number was around thirty five million dollars here an investment into into the Katyusha so we're really excited about those things and I think it bodes as well for us. The other thing that we need to keep in mind is economists are oh they're like weatherman you know they don't have to be right all the time but they do their best on their projections. We're very fortunate to have a great economist here. Ul to Dr Wagner he does a fantastic job and and then of course every year we bring in Dr Scott. It's really interesting that we're a community that has access to two economist must who are actually entertaining and who will actually can actually talk to the general public and not talk over our heads it's really great to see that we've had Dr Wagner do an event for us and he'd have fantastic job and then of course every year having Scott commend so I think we're really fortunate to have those is two guys in in Louisiana and very fortunate to have what we have here with you. L. Is the healthcare sector is that the the fastest growing wing or is it. It I mean did they say or is it just a combination. It's a it's a combination. I mean I it'd be difficult to look at. I mean you know obviously the health care industry is significantly larger right now in the IT sector and Katie but the IT sector is probably faster growing because because it's got a little more to catch up but we're excited about both of both of the industries and and those are things that add to you you could almost say it's a chicken or the egg relates to. It IT companies have a challenge of finding places where relocating and places where their workforce workforce wants to live. We're fortunate that that that Lafayette and Acadia offers a lot of unique cultural amenities for those things but you know quality of life something extremely difficult to measure. I can't show a statistic that says we've got outstanding quality of life our quality of places excellent slot. There's not a measure for that so it's something you have to experience well what we have to do. Is We have to attack things from both sides. We have to make sure that we're improving that quality of life that quality of place to to attract that talent and then we have to make sure that we're tracking the companies that are going to be providing jobs to that talent so that the two things meet and we can continue to grow and and have have people indicate that we WANNA hear and why no one of your initiatives that we were talking about before we started taping as the fifty five by twenty five and so we're going to to not only attract these companies have employees in the region that are ready to work. We've got some work to do as a community to make sure that our are you know our people. Our neighbors are educated to be able to fulfil the jobs that are needed. Would you talk about that. Initiative sure absolutely you know one of the things that companies look at site location consultants looked at when they're looking to put a facility somewhere they look at the educational attainment of area because it lets them know what kind of workforce they're going to be dealing with and how much remedial education they'll have to do and or or how much training they'll have to do and what the ability that workforce force has of capturing that training and being able to quickly grasp those skills or or things that are needed for the new jobs a new workforce that there be they'll be employing. Well honestly if you look at the statistics and across across Acadian right now they're. They're not really good about that. Surprise you're yeah you're looking at a cross acadian. If you look at just two year and four year degrees here at about twenty eight percent of the population has a two year or four year degree if you add into that number high-value L. U. Certificates which our certificates a welding certificate those types of things that can get you a really good paying jobs that are high demand jobs the ad that number the two that twenty eight percent it gets us to about thirty seven percent that thirty seven percent if we did nothing by twenty twenty-five based on the trajectory that we've been on the past several years we would hit forty two percent with have certificates two or four year degrees so that gives us about thirteen percent sent Delta to meet that fifty five percent goal that we've set for the area. We're doing that through a number of ways. We've we've met with all the school boards the school systems across all on on parishes. We've met with the superintendents we've got them on board to helping get students more college or Advanced Vegetation Ready we've got them to help us with some dual enrollment programs this is all through an initiative from our our workforce Education Committee which is co chaired by Dr Natalie Hara from ABC and Jim Bernard from stellar because stellar is one of the largest private employers in the community party is constantly looking for new talent so they they recognized the need for advancements in our workforce education programs so if you look at the programs that that SLC's putting in place especially as the that you see that they've recently announced with a number of the local high schools across it's the region where they're offering enrollment programs where children can graduate from high school close to completing two year degree. I it's common money. Yes yea I it's remarkable and then if you also look at one of my favorite things Dr Harder is one of the the people and she's actually the incoming chair of our board as well but DART's amazing if you look at one of my favorite things that she says is I will never have a program at my college. That doesn't have a job at the end of it and I think that's brilliant. I mean I wish more educators would look at things that way. Family wants her to be president is Kasese she she's phenomena so if you look at look at the programs that she's doing then you look at it as a Great Program University Louisiana has put into place and we had Dr Jim Henderson here recently who spoke to a group one of our Council engines about this. It's called Compete Louisiana what we have is. We have a lot of of adults out there who have a significant amount of college credit. They just haven't completed their degree. life got in the way I mean it's they got a job offer and they they took job. Offer moved out or had a family issue. They had to deal with and and so what what we're wanting to do is get all those people back in school. Get them to complete their degree. it's easier now than it ever has been because of the you know online classes classes I mean you. You don't have to figure out like Oh. How am I going to go to class every night? You know you can do it kind of on your own time through the online work so we're we're really working hard to get those get that put in place. We'll also be looking at some legislation and the upcoming session that helps with some issues is that we have in the state of Louisiana related to student debt unpaid parking tickets. I think we've all experienced parking tickets at college. when parking can be challenging US seem to find the car that's always do. It's amazing but you look. There's we have an issue in the state where you have transcripts that are held hostage. If you have any unpaid debt to to the college now we had no way would be advocating for you know doing with personal responsibility you owe the money the money but it really kinda handcuffs the the schools so a unit with a situation in a situation where a student is they re enroll because they oh this debt they can't even re enroll just for the next no master so you have to be paid and then they can't transfer because transcripts were held hostage. The debt is turned over to attorney general and the Torney general adds thirty three percent fees to it so it just kind of snowballs so we want an ability for the school to be able to work something out with the student a payment plan of some sort because also that meltsa means not only your hindering a student you're also hindering the school from having another student and and actually other revenue brought into a by them re re rolling into other classes so there's there'll be some legislation. We're hoping coming up in the next session that we're going to be addressing that all of those things are going to help us get to that fifty five percent of advanced educational attainment by twenty twenty five. You know it's it's kind of poignant to me like I have a four year degree and beyond and things have been turned on their head. It's it's almost easier to get the job quickly. That's high paying with certificates then to get a traditional four year degree which I'm totally in favor of shrew degrees we have one that it's stolen college but things have changed so fast and you can see the appeal to just going to community college and getting a very high level training training where you can start making fifty sixty thousand dollars and you don't have all the debt that others have so. I'm glad to see that compete. Louisiana is kind of reaching out on all levels to get people to look at where they are but my question you and I don't know if you can answer it. People still have to pay the tuition but maybe some of the people that are being focused on they might qualify for grants or pell grants or something. Is there some component to help with payment or all the you know. All the schools have people who can help search out those things I don't know what those things those particulars are but you know I know that the schools have and and are willing to help people figure out figure those things out because it's in in many cases with some of the the students that have a significant amount of credit they are. They're in a situation where may not even be that much what they're what they need to complete their degree. You know your point about a getting a job with a two year. Degree or certificate is is very well founded arena for years in the manufacturing communities across the country. This is not just you know in Louisiana but we've seen that we've all we've had the strong push that everyone has to go get a four year degree and absolutely encouraged anybody and everybody who who's capable that should pursue that because liberal learn liberal arts he learned like a variety of absolutely absolutely you learn how you know you you learn how to think you learn how to how to be a critical thinker and those are important skills and you know also I think it helps you. I mean look at college and it helped me in a number of ways. Some of which I won't talk about on podcast gives you a little time to grow up it gives you that that kind of comfortable steppingstone between being completely on your own and being at home but so many times times we've put we've pushed kids into four year institutions when it may not be with their cutout for doesn't mean that Iran intelligent. Some of them are extraordinarily intelligent doesn't mean that they're not that they're lazy or they're not hard working. It's just not the environment for them. So what you've done when you do that as you've such for failure and then it takes years to get over that failure where if they'd taken it a little slower step a time taking gone to a two year school gotten a you know two year degree or certificate certificate of some sort gotten a job you know after a while they may be ready to go back and get that engineering degree or other degree that that will help them to the next level but if you look at states especially in the south right now like Louisiana where you have a such a strong oil and gas industry such a strong petrochemical industry where you out chemical operators it's an aging workforce and you can get into that industry with a two year degree and you've made a really really good money right yeah. I agree Yeah Yeah I just I. It's just amazing how quickly things have changed. I think it's for the better because that that way everybody has an opportunity to have you know some type of job training that they can be proud of and that we all recognize as being worthy so I'm glad to see this well. Look I know the work that you do with one acadian. This doesn't just happen you need investors and members and community support to make your work possible and in the introduction I was mentioning impact the campaign for one AK Tiana which is the second five-year fifteen million dollar campaign for funding. Would you like to talk about that. I know you're already been quite successful efforts. We've we've been very fortunate that we've had a number of our investors that have stepped up up and come back on board with us. We have a little bit of work to do but we're at about eleven million dollars of that fifty million dollar goal for the five years. you know one of the things that I want to point out is the fact that we have in this new five year plan. We've recognized some areas that maybe we we missed the boat a little bit in the first five years we were very successful but one of the things I'll say is kind of difficult to gauge success because we didn't really set measures and metrics and that first five years I I understand why because we were trying to kind of be all things to all people which is extremely difficult to do. I would say I would say possible yeah so we've become based on input from our investors and our members we have become much more focused so this five year plan is very focused on on what our strengths are our and that's you know creation and preservation of jobs advocacy for infrastructure Workforce Education Work and then the other thing that we that we're refocusing on is member engagement and member services you know one of the things that we kind of trying to figure out a way to say this without saying and without being completely negative but we we lost track of the fact that we still serve as the Chamber of Commerce for Lafayette and we serve serve as a regional economic development entity. Those two things are not mutually exclusive. They can coexist because we've been doing the same work as the chamber. We just haven't talked about it is much so we're we're recommitting to that work as well as the regional economic development work we're setting very strict goals and measures and metrics so that we can present a report card to our investors to show them. Here's what's happening. Here's where we are on the on what we said we were going to do we're very proud of the five year plan and we put in place very proud of the measures and metrics that we put in place and we're really proud of the fact that we are proudly saying we are Lafayette's Chamber of Commerce and and we're regional economic development organization we have you mentioned nine hundred businesses seven hundred of those are chamber members and we owe those folks the representation they deserve from Chamber of Commerce and so we we we are strongly committed to that in the next five Veres moving forward doesn't the Lafayette Business Right we have a number of partners other Chambers of commerce across the region that are strong partners of ours. I meet with the started meeting with the executives from those chambers we kind of I think we're going to quarterly. We're kind of meeting as needed. We've got another meeting coming soon. where we just sit down kind of in a safe space and we talk about issues that we're all facing those chambers and critically in their successes critically important boarded us as one acadian because we use their input to help us inform our strategic plan our annual programme of work our legislative agenda all of those things because it would be crazy for me to think that I have my finger on the pulse of Iberia Parish like Janet Fog Gonzales does or or Acadia parish like amy does or vermillion like Lingala Rita's I mean they they know their parishes and so the more that we interact with them the more we help them be successful. The better off the entire region is yeah and that really helps when Acadian a- absolutely front and center because you know for years we didn't have this regional effort effort and we really need it. We need to pull together to get the interstate to get I forty nine finished to get so many initiatives dawn suck up. I commend you for your thank. You and we're we're. We're excited about it and like I said we've got a little more work to do on the the capital campaign but we feel good about where we are and we're getting good responses this from folks and I think that the program will work is is fantastic what I really am excited about. This is going to sound very strange. I'm very excited about out where we'll be when we go into our next five-year fundraising for our next five-year campaign that doesn't mean I'm a glutton for punishment. I'm always looking for you know to raise money but at the same time with the five year strategic plan that we're we've got in place now. We're going to be very it's very easy to say. Here's what we said. We were GONNA. I do. Here's what we did. Here's what we're going to do. The next five years whereas the previous plan was a little more nebulous it was it needed to be that way because it was are now we we didn't know who were exactly work in progress so we're very proud of where we are on Kurt's hurts people to go to your website which say what it is one K. Deanna one acadian dot org and on the elections I mean there are a number of things you can go to there but what Acadian and what Acadian dot org slash elections. That'll take you to our election dashboard where you can see all of the races across the region who's running what the what the constitutional amendments are all the information on the elections there you can do you can do WanNa dot org slash education and you can see their education dashboard where we're keeping track of all the stats that we need to track across all non perishables for the fifty five twenty five initiative and then we have an impact campaign website that you can linked linked to from our our website as well and then also also encourage people to go to investigate Hannah which is our opportunity zone Prospectus Arcadian opportunities on perspective's website where you can see uh the opportunity zones are across the Katyusha which some that we haven't talked about but it's something that's kind of critical moving forward for to draw investors into our community ready for a number of projects right right. I've got money bill as upcoming gassed. We interviewed her a couple of weeks back and I'm just so excited about what she for the real downtown in the northern part of our it's going to be a real game. Changer in another thing on your website when Acadian dot org I liked the policy priorities the outlining on education statewide local because it shows that the business community is for certain things and not just against against it shows that you know if it's appropriate we might need to invest in more. I hate to say the taxes but you're not against everything you WanNa look and prioritise. Let's spend properly and then if there's an investment needed. If it's appropriate ED unjustified the business community might get behind it and I know you just see so often platitudes. Are Nothing and I think it's well word hurts people to go wager. I appreciate that it is a fact that you have to recognize that you know people need to recognize. There are some grey areas not everything strictly black and white you you know I you you mentioned the taxes. One of the best examples Lafayette and Acadia has general very anti-tax or has been named have been called out has been granted tax. I would argue that it's probably not that I think it's a lack of trust if you look at the the the the way to airport tax was structured and the fact that people are going are seeing what they invested in. That's a big difference. If you build that kind of trust I think people are people people are willing to pay for what they know. They're going to get but like I look. I am not a tax person. I don't I prefer not paying taxes axes. Any chance are yet especially if I don't have any idea what I'm getting for it so as long as we're protected. I think that's one of the issues with gas. Tax is the fact that if you know how do we know that Katyushas GonNA get their appropriate share of the those revenues for infrastructure needs in our in our community and then they're not just going to go to Baton Rouge and ended up in other parts of the state so those those are the things that we worked to vet those things and you know this last legislative legislative session we we came out in favor of a gas tax under certain conditions and in fact they took those provisions out and we dropped support for it and the provisions were that we were getting their named projects in there and I forty nine was one of those without that provisioned without some guarantee that we're GonNa see our share of it. There's no way we could support attacks against tax choi. We're here with Jason Sikora Jason. I saw you writing notes. I know he normally has questions that you have some have a comment and then a question so you talked about jobs and quality of life in Lafayette but I think it's also important to recognize like even hearing raider solutions waiters doing the the quality of the work environment is super important. I think companies are taking stock in that so even here like whenever values this is John Choice so every decision we make benefits the way the officers set up the way we interact with each other the downtime that we get I think it's super important and I think Lafayette companies offer that they will waiter did even like net pods. I thought was awesome so my my question was the you talked about earlier. In the podcast events like the speeches the forums the debate where can people get more information about that if they want to attend those go to our website one Katie Dot Org under events okay and we we list everything there okay and then if people want to donate is the website the best the best the best ways to reach out to Marianne Maatouk. Marianne is on our staff you can you can find her on the website she's she's our investor relations coordinator and she's fantastic job and she's making sure that that our investors are taking care of and she's also tasked with bringing in new investors as as well now right now. That's kind of job that we're all doing. We're all we're all rowing in the same direction right now to make sure that we meet our goal but Marianne in our point of contact for that so I would encourage people to go to the website look for the impact link and they can go there and they can find Marianne or they can find me reach out to me. I'll be glad to talk to anybody excellent. Thank you for being here. This is excellent. I appreciate it a lot of information and that's one of the challenges that we face Jason. Oh we we jokingly say internally if we made and sold widgets could show you a one piece of paper what we did but we've got our figures and so many different things and we're working in in so many so many different avenues that it's it's it takes a copious amount of information to even tell you what we're doing but this is this Bassam so thank you very hug and thank you Jason Jason Sikora an writer solutions for making this show possible. I'd also like to thank again Iberia Bank for its support of discover Lafayette into our our listeners. We really appreciate your support. The podcast is growing and you can catch this podcast or any of them at discover Lafayette Dot net are you can subscribe and get it delivered to your phone every Friday morning. We released a new podcast. We're also looking for sponsors. If you're interested you can email me at Jan.. Jan Swift dot com on behalf of discover Latvia this is John scrubbed

Lafayette Louisiana president Iberia Bank Dr Laurence Scott Katie Iberia Bank Dot Com writer John Katyusha Katyusha Marianne Maatouk Dr Actor Laurence Scott Dr Wagner South Louisiana Discovery Lafayette Troy Wayman One K. Tiana John Swift
Cpl. Bridgette Dugas  Public Information Officer for  Lafayette City Police

Discover Lafayette

44:40 min | 1 year ago

Cpl. Bridgette Dugas Public Information Officer for Lafayette City Police

"This is John Swift and you're listening to discover Lafayette podcast dedicated to the people and rich culture of Lafayette the gateway to South Louisiana. We tape in the offices of Raider a hands on. It service provider that integrates all of your needs for advanced technical support. Effective communication options and cybersecurity raiders motto. Is You just want it to work? We understand please. Visit Raiders Solutions Dot Com for more information. I'd like to thank Iberia. Bank our premier sponsor. They support our community in so many ways in their dynamic team is committed to serving the banking needs of clients in this region throughout the southeastern United States. Iberia Bank offers the resources of a national bank with the personal touch of a community bank. Please visit Iberia Bank Dot Com for more information the generosity of Lafayette General Health. Also makes this podcast possible and we thank them for. Being a premier sponsor as Acadian is largest nonprofit regional health system. Lafayette General Health is committed to restoring maintaining and improving health in the communities. It serves for more information visit. Lafayette General DOT COM Corp. brigid YouGov public information officer for the Lafayette Police Department is our guest today. A Lake Charles native and graduate of Legrand's high school. Bridget joined the Police Department here. In Lafayette in two thousand nine and she has risen through the ranks. Starting out as a patrol officer nights then serving as a precinct resource officer assigned to community relations and now the Department spokesperson. Brigid is also well known in our community for her work on behalf of Lafayette Crime. Stoppers and bridget on a personal note I think you bring a sense of adventure and purpose to all of your endeavors proud to welcome you today. Thank you for having me. Yeah so happy to be here and last thing I need to say you're also my buddy. Oh yes you know. It better relieved that we met through Upper Latvia and actually went back through some video. I had done when I worked with them. And we tape to A video back in two thousand seventeen day and you were still with precinct. Four in Upper Laffy ads on Moss Street Doing your community community work and we had met. I think just through different things in the community. You always seem to be. We're good things are happening. Try to be try to be so I want you to. Let's pretend we didn't do that video. Just a lot of people may not have seen that so. I'd like you to tell your story about how you got here from. Lake Charles and joining the police department would so I came here in Lafayette in two thousand one to it's in U. L. where I stayed there. And KINDA got caught up into the workforce and that's what made me stop going to school. I guess you can say And I just was like What do I WANNA do? Initially I think in the beginning I was more focused on being a dentist. I Dunno if mentioned that you did talk. Yeah that's what I wanted to do so I was like okay. I'm going to do that. But that's a tough it is. It's a job right but I did meet are now Deputy Chief Reginald Thomas. He was working security at the northgate mall at the time and I met him and I remember him telling me look you should just come and be a police officer like what are you. Why don't you just coming over and I'm like a police officer. I've never thought to do that. Are you serious but I went home and I thought about it on Mike. What can I do to really make a difference in Lafayette especially being at a new city and just not really knowing many people but I still like the city and I wanted to get to know people and what better way than to be in the community as police officers right so he definitely encouraged me to do it in two thousand nine? That's when I made the decision to take all my career as a police officer. How many female police officers were there? Then maybe guessing and then today has it changed. It has definitely changed. I think when I got there it wasn't as many as we have now It's still we're still a minority group. I was not many female officers but It's definitely has changed since two thousand nine We try to hire as many females as possible our recruiter. That's something we focus on minority officers so that also means gender as far as females. We want to get as many females in the department right. What do you have to have to apply to the academy? High School is that you have to have a high school pomare. Gd And once you do testing for civil service for the state of Louisiana then you can apply for whichever agency that you want to with the state of Louisiana. So once you do that you didn't go to the academy And of course there's a series of things that you have to do upon getting Harwood our agency. There's a psych exam. There's a physical fitness test or things that you have to go through very very long process almost like a six month process before you're actually hired as a police officer and then you attend the academy. What kind of physical abilities you have to have you know so during the. Jila test that they give you you have to do a running I think maybe a mile and a half run some sit ups and push ups just something to get your heart rate going and just want to make sure you're able to maintain your stamina during you know if you have to fight or do anything that's going to require you to be physical right. So yeah that's what you have to do. And then you move onto the academy if you pass that part so did you start on the Patrolling at nights. Or did you have is that? That was your first. Yes that was just my first GIG. what we call precinct four. Which is your Mostra Louisiana Avenue that area. That's where I was for four four and a half years going on five years before I was moved to my new section. But yeah patrol. That's where every officer has to start. So what is it like patrol officer? It's actually a night especially at night. 'cause I was excited to work at night because I was like. Yeah I wanna see something like once. Sunday's you know. That's they enroll. So I was excited but I saw a lot within my first two years of being a police officer. I saw a lot just Violence that I was not used to really Yeah because you know I've come from a very Not sheltered home. What I didn't see violence at least never came to my neighborhood. Never came to my house so The things that we were being called to the to the neighborhoods there I worked for I was just in all just like wow really are doing this and this type of violence really does occur so it was very shocking in the beginning When I started but that's where I learned everything and I was able to learn how to communicate effectively and things that I needed to do to make sure these people feel safe enough to tell me what happened. A lot of domestic violence a lot of domestic violence. And that's something that it's pretty hard because sometimes you have women are men that just are ready to talk about what actually happened or exactly. They're frightened. They're scared they're not sure what to do. So you just you definitely have to be able to make them comfortable with you on again. That's something that I learned just by being out there right consideration. Still right around with the police. I know several years back. I was told I could ride with you guys. Yes we've been waiting for you to come by no braves. We've been waiting to have a ride along program. We still have it. I don't need a gun. You don't need a gun police. Don't want me to go. No no anyway. So yes you come over I get some paperwork done on. You sign a waiver and yeah you write a patrol officer right in the front seat. Pass the psych test. You know you don't have to do you know not for a ride. Along does seem exciting but yet scary. It is but our officers are trained. And you're going to be extremely safe. They're never gonNA put you in a situation where you're gonNA feel unsafe And if they will they will they will. Make sure that your your stay. I especially having so on the front in the Front. See with you. It's a little bit different. Because that's that patrol officers office. That car is his office so they're gonNA make sure you're safe definitely encourage people to come out. Dorado long whether it's at night during the day whatever time and look we're open twenty four seven so you can come in anytime anytime to do it. Yeah so while. We're on this topic. If somebody does want to apply to do this do they. Just call yes you are. I'm your person for the Ride along program you just contact our office and the secretary. Yep Put you in touch with me and I have to do a little background check just to make sure. There's no criminal history or anything that that's alarming. And of course there are some guidelines that we have to follow on or you can be approved but yes absolutely a very easy process. I usually have the person cleared within two days to be able to start writing. I would think somebody that wants to be a police officer would really be well served to do this yes. We encourage all of our applicants to do the ride along before they even apply with us right because I may realize it's just not today may not be for what may not be what you thought it was. So that's a great way to see. Yeah well you've worked Now it's your third you worked under Jim Craft yet when he was police. Chief and then Toby Yard yes. And now the interim chief Scott Morgan. So you've really worked with some fine people say first of all absolutely. Yeah so you've kind of moved up the ranks as we're talking about so you went from being a patrol officer at night to precinct four's Resource Precinct Reese Resource Officer. So when were you doing in that role so mainly I focus on? I always say the beautification of Lafayette As the resource officer. I handled complaints such as blighted property complaints. Tall Grass Anything that that could. It was beautification of Lafayette but on a police aspect so we may contact with residents landlords and and just tried to make a difference in these neighborhoods that had houses that needed to come down or are they were an issue So that's what we mainly focused on working with the would Lafayette would LCD They're planning resource department and their codes and zoning we all did that like together team. Yes as a team. Now when I worked as an attorney with Elsie G. I helped community development and I didn't realize until that point would blighted homes due to a whole neighborhood. Yes because they can end up being crack. Housi- as Is People fires and I ended up having clients that one of their houses was burned on no because of crime in their neighborhood. And it's it's just the older neighborhoods homes have been inherited. Maybe families no longer taking care of the nobody even knows owns it right and things really can decline but it brings a whole neighborhood safety level. It does it does so we were really focused and we still are. We still have an officer. That does that very To focus on blighted properties. Junked cars all those things that could make neighborhood. Just go down. So yeah. That's what we do right so like I said that was a precinct. Four so that was a precinct At that point that Kenneth Gujarat helped get flushed. Yes the new precinct built in it was it was a great asset to precinct. Four having that police station there now right asset it continues to be a great asset precinct. Yeah so let's fast forward to today. You're the department spokesperson. So what does your job entail today? Do you get called on about everything. He called about anything. So I'm the direct contact between the media and our department so I have to answer questions as it pertains to anything to do with Lafayette Police Department. I'm also as the public information officer. I'm the person that you would call to say. Hey how do I get in touch with this person in reference to this? Is My issue in my neighborhood. So that's also something that I do but yeah mainly any communications with the media to Lafayette Police Department. That's my job. Cows that twenty four seven twenty four seven. I'm on call twenty four seven Have to answer Any emergencies of course where our chief of police is called out then. More than likely I'm going to be called out as well to any of those scenes that come up day or night union work. I enjoy it I love. It allows me to meet so many people get invited to so many events 'cause having that direct link between me and the chief it allows me to be invited to those special rights. You know so I get to meet a lot of people and make a difference in any way that I can What are some things you know? Looking back When did you take that position? Bridget has been the last in two thousand eighteen. Yeah so it's been a couple of years. What what are some of the things you've gotten pulled into? You can just kind of talk about some of the things you remember getting pulled into as as the spokesperson like things. You've had to report on to the pro a lot. Yeah so the most the most recent thing probably was the we had a standoff on Jefferson Street last month. I think that was probably the most recent thing where we were on the scene. We're live out there Where we had a standoff with it individual individual that had shot another man that was in the hospital and he was inside of his residence. you know police were trying to get him out so that was probably the most recent because all the fun fact is. I'm also a crisis. Negotiator gun with you. I mean you you you show up as a police officer not as a spokesperson but that day My role was kind of like. Do you want me to be the spokesman or shall I be the negotiators because we had someone that we need to negotiate outside the residence So it was pretty funny not funny but it was pretty leg. Which way should I go because I do have the both of those roles but it was a great experience because I was able to help both sides? I was a spokesperson. I told media information as it came available to me and also helping my negotiator team. Whatever they need to gather information whatever it was so I was able to kind of do both of my rose and I enjoy both. Yeah any other high profile. We've had several things here. Has Several things. Oh Yeah you know the plane crash that we had that was something that was very you call. I was called out. I remember that it was a Saturday morning in bed with the kids and I got the first phone call and when I heard plane crash my in Lafayette you know like is. I didn't really know if it was true. Because my first phone call actually came from a media outlet that said hey reporting to see a plane crash. Lafayette and I'm like I didn't get a call yet but let me find out so. Of course I called our watch commander. And he's like yeah. You might want to suit up. It's it's pretty serious so I'm elise hop up and put my uniform on and I hit to the scene Yeah and you were mentioning. You're in bed with your children. You're a new mom. You've just had a baby. Yeah he's GonNa he's actually going to be two in. May that like no yes I did. So yes my youngest is going to be too may have a five year old daughter. Yeah she's going to be six in October. So Gosh that went by it. Went by fast. Yeah so I want to ask this and you know I. I don't think I'm brave enough to be a police officer. I admire the work of any law enforcement officer particular. Lafayette City Police. I I'm just more of a scaredy cats you know and I don't WanNa put you on the spot but maybe it is you know. Do you ever have times where you have to show up and you know that like the fellow on Jefferson Street. You know someone's already been shot right. Is it tough pulling up to a scene where you wonder? How is this GONNA come out right? The unknown is always my biggest fear of the unknown. But I try not to use fear the word fear when I go to things like this because I know I have a job to do so I know it's kind of like disconnection but I really focus on what my job is what I have to do to make sure the surrounding people are safe. So I'm so caught up in making sure everyone around me say that I kinda just bring it about myself as far as being fearful you dissolve to your training. Correct that they they train you. I guess how was aligned to absolute thing yes. We have plenty of training where it teaches us how to respond to crisis what things to look for and and so it helps all these different types of trainings that we go through. It helps us big time right. So yeah I I keep my mind focused on that and I just tend to forget. Ya I wanNA bring up crime stoppers. I'm very proud to serve on the board that you thank you. I just love it. I love that I get to hear about things going on. See how criminals are caught and we really depend on people in our community to provide tips very police rice. Ah Very important. So if you WanNa talk about your war. So we have to Law enforcement coordinators myself and major juice bruce with Lafayette parish. Sheriff's Office. So we're there to coordinate between the board members and The Crime Stoppers Program. We meet once a month where we discuss information that we received from the month prior drag we to get the The number it's like a right right brevard per number. We give 'em 'cause 'cause you know as you know anonymity is a big part of the crime stoppers program so we never know. Who's calling. Our tipsters are only known as these numbers that that I give. When I'm reading the information so yeah anonymity number one and we focus on that and we make sure that all we keep our tipsters anonymous. Yeah but it's a great program. It has assisted law enforcement agencies around Katie. Anna solved. Numerous crimes So I'm proud to be a part of the program and I hope it continues to work. You think really most crimes somebody knows. Oh yeah there's always somebody Oh yeah I think somebody knows always knows a little something and sometimes they may think that their information that they're giving us valuable but it helps like little things will help like saying that they saw a certain type of vehicle leaving the area at the time that they heard shots are something like that and hey we followed up and solve many crimes that we share A. I thought I saw a crime in progress the other day. You didn't call because I there was no crime on but I was at the Chase Bank on Pinho culliver by the oil center. And I was going to the ATM and Saturday morning. I think it was ten eighteen from my receipts. You know and I looked maybe nine eighteen but I looked in. This guy was in a big black truck blocking the exit to the the age. And then so I pull up and I'm thinking I really want to deposit this check and it just made me nervous that he was doing that and then behind me another guy another big white truck another truck. It was white. The other one was black. Pulled behind me and I just felt that he didn't get into the line. It was like just in the parking lot and you know that feeling of something. Not Something's not right so I'm trying to get my deposit on and you know and I was able to get out. The guy pulled up so I could leave but I read the next week. That these two fellows who they thought were in two stolen trucks had been arrested in baton rouge trying to steal chase. Atm's Yes it was. I think I saw. I'm I'm almost positive. Also yeah we arrest so baton rouge P police department arrested for males after the night. I don't know if you remember the ATM on near Broadmoor. The Chase Bank on brought more Was burglarized where they removed it from. Its holy that's the whole machine out of their damaged it They're filmed when they're doing yes absolutely And that they did that they were not able to get into that. Atm But they did go to baton rouge where they were able to get in at least one and then they were caught on the second one good and so we linked them to all crimes that have been happening and they were all from Houston the Houston Area Texas to the trucks. Probably stole right. They have been stealing trucks big utilize big trucks these utilizing them in in crimes and then just dumping them all. Yeah so I'm in there in the line and I really thought Oh my God you know I was scared already. Put My card in there in the machine. Do you know right right my check but hey if you see something say something again like I said any information that you may think is is irrelevant. We were probably looking for those trucks. Are you know what I'm saying? So yeah anytime you feel that certain gut feeling that something is just not right. You're not wasting law enforcement time That's what we're here for to investigate to prevent crimes. That's what we want to do so absolutely call anytime you see something like that. How does somebody call crime stoppers so crime stoppers? You can call our tip. Line a two three two tips. That's famous number but we now have this new thing because technology's changing so we have to keep up with it We have a P. Three tips APP so we have an APP that you can utilize from your smartphone device where you can put in a tip information right there from your phone. It's very very user friendly. You just put it information you select Lafayette Crime. Stoppers as your source will ask you. What type of crime do you WANNA report? Give THE INFORMATION. It's going to give you a tip number and it's as easy as that. Okay so if I'm a tipster and then the perpetrator that I gave informational. I mean just caught. Can you talk about how people are compensated? Rewards are yes so once you submitted tip you're going to get number because remember. That's the only way that we're going to identify you on. We always tell you to follow up with US within a couple of days or our next week So once you do putting your information if we make an arrest based upon the information that you provided the Yes you will be compensated With cash so you would call back and say just that. Did my tip helped make an arrest and our coordinator will tell you. Yes or no and they will provide you with a security code on a a number and to go to the bank to pick up your money. That's awesome. It's that simple and I know it's even in the schools to yes new APP For high schoolers. Mainly that's what we focus on but any any school where the students can provide information about anything that's going on on campus and we will also compensate that student through school resource officer and they get. Visa Gift Card Fifty dollars which is a lot. Yeah absolutely yeah good. Well let's I'd like to Segue and talk about some things that people should know to keep themselves safe their body safe and also their possessions. Because I know that unlocked cars and residences are an issue. It is a big issue especially in south. Lafayette from what? Yes yes The majority of our vehicle burglaries where the cars are. Unlocked are from south side residents So yeah you just. I always say it's an open invitation. If you keep your vehicle unlocking your neighborhood because these criminals are gonNA WANNA come back if they were able to go through your neighborhood and and hit nine cars and of those nine cars. They got three guns. They're like WHOA. We'll be back because it was that easy So Lock Your Vehicle. Secure remove all personal items anything of value from plain sight. Don't make your vehicle appealing to that person. That's just looking inside to see if there's anything that they may have they may want and just if you just lock your cars. They're not trying to work for not as hard. They don't WanNa make noise. They don't WanNa to break windows. You know things like that at night. 'cause of course going to be alarming so the simplest thing that you can do is just lock it and this is anywhere whether you're anywhere on the street and a business in your driveway. Yes anything yes because these crimes are also happening during the day. It's not just limited to night time crimes. They're doing during the day. It could be at a business in a parking lot. The mall you never know wherever your car is. Just make sure you're secure and remove valuables from inside. I remember. I was shocked years ago when chief craft told me that you know even just downtown people walk by and just open that a lot of them are just unlocked. They are not just downtown. But I mean it's anywhere surprising. The number of people that aren't locking. Yeah that's why I say. Double Lock it you. Because a lot of people depend on their little clicker and sometimes it may not have locked your doors so I always say just double check so when you hit your clicker just lift. Your hand will make sure so. What about other types of crimes going on? I know overall. We're very safe meaty. Lafayette is a safe community And we thrive on on making sure. It remains that way anytime we see that. There's an issue in a specific neighborhood or specific crimes. They can place. We're going to target and focus on that specific area to sure that we get that neighborhood back. We want it to be safe for everyone so yeah we will focus on those specific areas To make sure we're deterring crime Well F- yet ultimately is a safe city. I believe that so last year in two thousand nineteen if you can share like trans. I know crime was going down in some categories and then went up a little bit. Did we had an increase in two categories which was homicides and burglaries so We did we touched on. Wiberg increase and a lot of the homicides contributed to It these weren't these weren't random acts per se The individuals involved in these homicides. All had some type of a relationship with each other are knew each other so it was not random acts Not Saying that. It's better that way but just for the safety of the community to know that these are not just random homicides occurring in Lafayette so yeah the two categories that we were up in but ultimately altogether. We were down. I believe seven percent altogether So yes yeah I saw on your facebook on the. I don't know if it was crime. Stoppers the Lafayette Police Department. Both good good of facebook sites okay but there was a young girl that reached out and she wanted to interview. You share really liked seeing you on TV. Yes and Or that you want to encourage other young women to consider your career actually When I was contacted by the school About this little girl. They just explained to me that she was having some issues at school behavior and Her grades were kind of going down and she mentioned that she saw a young lady on television because she wanted to be a news report or in that that field And she was like I would really like to end if I could interview her than you know. I think it would make me do better in school. So of course when they called me I was like absolutely. I'll be there tomorrow. You know it. That's something that I don't think twice about if I can make a difference in a little girl's life are anyone's life then. I'm there so I went to school the next morning. I surprised at recess and she was able to sit and actually interview me. We went back to the classroom. Oh she interviewed me. She had some great questions by the way she said. You are spokeswoman for the department so these questions you should be able to answer like let's go. Let's go she she was. I think she was eleven. Okay she did very very good. She had some tough questions and I was like. Whoa wait. I wasn't prepared for this one but she did great and I just tried to encourage her. That exactly what I'm doing you could be doing the same thing. There's no limits to what you can do and I haven't checked on her this school year so I actually need to. Yeah Yeah because I have the school's contact. I told him I would follow up with see how she was doing. So I'm going to do that. Yeah now did she ask questions that I should've asked you know. I think you've covered herself. Questions were mainly You know like the wise in the house and she was very interested in police. Work Just kind of those things that we see so she. That's where the tough questions because you know I'm trying to answer them like ooh she's like a little girl. I don't want to scare her. But right you know the reality of of law enforcement is it could be you know very demanding and somewhat scary but right. It's all worth produces Reggie Thomas encouraged you absolutely. I bet that really will stay with her. I hope I hope it does in school and yet doing the right things on the right things making the right decision right. I want to get in something. You know what we're talking about crime stoppers. I forgot to mention about the new police. Dog that crime stoppers purchased for the the City Police Department crime. I won't mention the neighborhood. Some of our board members lived in Pennsylvania and they had. The police had to borrow a police dog from the sheriff's Office. Because I think we only had one at the time at night. Yeah we did. We had no daytime. Canine dogs and I didn't realize they work schedule. Just like the police officer. That's right and so- crime stoppers Purchased young dogs and great gift. Yeah yes great. If they make a difference they make shopping. We've had several. Are we have so? We had that one dog that works every day during the day and he has been they have been working him. Trust me We are now deterring several crimes that were occurring during the day where we weren't able to have canine readily available. Now we have. He's catching burglars. I mean he's working during the day So it's a great asset to the department to be able to have a daytime doll because most agencies. You're canines usually just work at night most agencies. They are only able to afford those dogs. You know to be able to put them at night. Cover every day That's when the crime is con- yeah now that we have a daytime dog. It's it's great the guys love it it. It gives us the opportunity to solve a lot of these crimes that we weren't able to during the day and they are highly trained and very expensive. I think the fifteen thousand dollars thousand dollars off any. It's worth every penny because you you get a few years out of these dogs and they are trained and Again they are working the shift of that officer. So they're working a twelve hour shifts And they have to go to the vet they have to be well taken care of To be able to have several years of working and doing their job. Aren't they spoken to in German? Where they are. I think Dutch. Maybe Dutch don't know that most people don't let it shows for a for reasons of training on. We don't want the dog to know English because everyone around Lafayette. Yeah usually speaks English so we don't want the dog to learn commands from other people. He's only supposed to listen. To his handlers. So while they're spoken to in a different language yeah I'm glad that worked out and Yes we love it. Great ask apartment. Yeah is there anything going on this year? I know we have our crime. Stoppers banquet coming up in April April festival. Anything coming up to share short the Laffy Police Department. We host the annual war. Basque first responders basketball tournament every year. This is GonNa be our fourth year. Every year we sponsor a first responder in the area and the Katy area. That's just a need whether it be. Medical expenses are something that happened within the family and This year we with the permission of the family. We are going to be supporting The Lafayette Shares Office Deputy. His he was a lieutenant who losses life unfortunately on February twelfth Do some medical complications so we are going to be doing that. Coming up. March twenty eighth. Okay we always do that. Lca Lafayette Christian Academy Gives US yeah? They gives us. They give us the gym every year for this event on so we're grateful for them but yes that's what we have coming up. March twenty eighth great great great benefit. We always have a great turnout and the first responders are going to be out there playing the fire department. The SHERIFF'S OFFICE. Old To like a fun place to guess. They support us in everything that we need. So yeah that's what we have coming up. Yeah we're just last Christmas notes. The first time that the police officers went shopping with young ones as I think targeted first approaches Lafayette and there was some issues. With how how funny. Yeah you can't just give the check right right individuals but Anyway how did that go? I mean it was fine. Turn out we did that In December the a couple of days before Christmas that was our first shop with a cop and we hope to have many more but we had several police officers over sixty kids from around McKay Deanna. Area we were able to allow them to shop for anything inside of target With their special resource officer or a COP. We had a cops out there to escort the children throughout the store. It was a great event The children loved it. They were so excited to be able to shop with their favorite officer. And we hope to do that again and of course that was because of crime stoppers that we were able to put that on on now so the officers are in the schools and they get to kind of know. Yes some of the kids so they were able to select kids. That were deserving that's right the school resource officers work hand in hand with these children on a daily basis. So they knew which children deserve. Something like this are just needed. That extra push To say yeah you know. Keep pushing throughout the school year. This is what we're GONNA do for you. So yeah. They knew exactly what they needed to do. And it was a great turn. Yeah and I do want to say for people that are listening to some like to contribute in the future. I know that that would be very much welcomed very much. I mean you can contact Lafayette Crime Stoppers for that. 'cause that's our biggest sponsor for the event. Yep anything else or that's all that. I think that we have coming up. Yeah well we are here in Raider with Jason Sikora. Who MAKES OUR PODCAST SOUND? So good thank you. No thank you those fun even making notes every there. I have making notes it first of all. Thank you for being here and thank you for everything that you do. I've I've had to call a couple of times. It was nothing bad or anything minor stuff in the neighborhood and you guys were always super quick to respond and Super Nice And I've I've always had good time to talk with the police officers It's true boys from all over the map here. I want to talk. More about. Carb Reagan's and burglaries cameras today. Help they do okay. They do absolutely we encourage residents to get cameras like please like you will. You may not. It may not happen to your house or your car but your camera could have captured that very suspect that walked right past you residents where your cameras were before he committed the crime so yes we do encourage cameras absolutely okay. Perfect all right. Well I'M GONNA in store my doorbell this this weekend there you go so let me ask a question that Jason. So if let's say there was a crime Jason's neighborhood and he and other neighbors had you just knock on doors and say do you have if they knock on neighbors. Knock on doors. We're going to see what what you capture because like. I said the person could pair will pass right in front of that camera not knowing before they went commit the crime or after they committed the Shona Yep how people were able to help piece together absolutely. Oh on top of that next door the APP when when there's break ins in the neighborhood especially in my neighborhood everybody starts talking and sharing the video footage. So yes somebody at the end of the block might not know what's going on but they might have a camera caught something and there's people in the neighborhood who catch all sorts of just one because sometimes they wear hoods and like you can't see their faces but if it helps than everybody we never cheap. Yeah they never know where the camera is. So let's say. They removed that hood when they passed. The you know the next residence because they're like okay. Wombat where I just committed that crime so I should be good to go. They may remove that. Who are they may take down that Scarf that was covering their face so yeah. It's very important. If you have surveillance and something occurred on your street. Please get with law enforcement and just let us look at it so we can just make sure nothing you know the suspect and pass my or go towards your house. Gotcha and I will also say if this is happening neighborhood certainly call nine one. One have come out. My Wife's car was broken into again. Left locked but even does dusting for fingerprints was nothing was stolen. It wasn't a big deal but just to have an officer come out and check for fingerprints. Start to put the pieces together about what's in the neighborhood super important super important because like you said we're gonNA dust for fingerprints. They may have not taken anything out of your car. But they could've left a very good fingerprint for that car that they broke in and stole a firearm out of so we definitely want to identify them. So yes. You're evidence can work for other cases so it's important that you call so we can eliminate excellent so going on this this rabbit hole. What's what's the big motivation of these break. Ins? Is it really guns and cash and technology. Yes then the number one thing is valuable things and when I say valuable. That's anything that could be sold for. Profit guns laptops. You know anything that they could get to sell and make profit. That's what they want Even Sun Shades. You know people have expensive glasses in their sun shades in their cars now also things like that. They're going to go in there just to take that they take them to pawnshops. That's those just sell them. Because you know now you have this new thing on on facebook for sale like anything right. Yes exactly they're gonNA make 'cause they don't WanNa take a loss so pawn shops very very when they buy things from individuals they they WANNA make sure. Yeah they're going to check with us. They have a system that we use that they they can see. The item has been reported stolen with any police agency. So yeah it's a little bit harder than how it used to be with porn shops now. Because they don't want to take a loss now they just sell it on facebook or wherever all these different or these Yep Chanel sunglasses. Don't and what's the people doing the break ins? What's the demographic? Is it just highschoolers? That when they're out of school for the summer this is stem having fun or is this a bit more organized than that around. It just depends you. We do see an increase during the summer months of burglaries and other crimes around the city so it just really depends on. We've seen demographics from teenagers to adults. Okay so yeah just really. It's all over the map When it comes to these times okay and then just this part up because I have more questions other than making sure you lock your car and maybe having cameras. Is there anything else that we can do? Or is that really the basics of that's the basics and see something say something as we discussed earlier. You may think it's nothing but it could be something. So you see it say something. All Right. So don't burglaries. What's the best part about being a police officer? Oh the best part for me and the most rewarding is making a difference in someone's life and I mean when they tell you they made it you made a difference in their life I got a phone call from a man that I arrested. Maybe like eight years ago. He called me finally got in touch with me. He said I've been trying to reach you for like several months. I'd just been calling and calling. But he finally got in touch with me and he said you may not remember me and he described his situation and what I arrested him for and he said I remember you telling me I'm not GonNa Judge you based upon what you did today but if I see you again or if I arrest you again then I'm going to be. I'm going to judge you because I would tell that to the people that I would arrest that. I'm not judging you today because you could have just had a bad day today. Like things could have just been. Brad whatever was going on in your life. I'M NOT GONNA judge today but if we meet each other again or you get arrested again. I'm going to judge you because we you know you said you were going to change that day. So when he called me and told that and he said I changed my life. I never been arrested again. You really helped me like it was a wakeup call and I was like thank you all day. Wish they were all like that. I wish everyone would do that. I can everybody. Gosh would. That's the most rewarding like hearing bad. Those words were like that's awesome. Yes final question. Why SMALL QUESTIONS FOR OFF? So we all have this depiction based on how they would and we see a police officer does. Is there something that we don't know that you guys do I mean? Obviously there's a lot of paperwork and things like that but is there anything else behind the scenes that we were oblivious to good question right. Yeah that's go blind now. I think there's a lot of things that we do that especially going above and beyond. There's a lot of things that officers do behind scenes that people just don't realize We have officers that they may encounter a person that let's just say the hotel may call and say hey. This person broke into hotel room. They're not supposed to be here. You have to get him away from our property. Okay so the average officer. We'll go there. We'll remove him from the property but most officers want to know their story like. Why did you do that you know? Did you just need somewhere to sleep? Okay no problem will get you a hotel room like legally will pay for it and get you somewhere to sleep. That's things that officers do that. People just don't realize they'll do complete strangers. Absolutely do that all the time. You know we go to these residents where children are mother may be displaced because of domestic. And maybe they don't want to go to the shelter that night they just. They're just not comfortable with going so we'll try to think of alternatives. Can I get your hotel room over here you know like can I bring you somewhere? We'll take you like wherever you WANNA go within the city limits if you WanNa go somewhere else to your aunt's house maybe she doesn't have a car. Come pick you up. We'll take you over there. Just little things will feed anyone. I mean I know when I was on patrol just to see a person standing on the corner asking money. I'm like what your story like. Why why are you doing that and they would just? I just need something like I just wanted a couple of dollars to grab something to eat. Okay let's go get something eat you think. It's typically not a scam. Yeah I mean you have some situations where yet is a scam. Sometimes though US people But we know we usually sound Sia. Yeah we have a sense of that. We've never seen that person before. And they may say. I'm just passing through. Lafayette trying to get to wherever the next stop. Maybe yeah we'll we'll try to help them in any way we can because we don't want them breaking laws and going to jails fill up our jails for these petty crimes So we can make a difference. We'll do it so a lot of officers do all those extra things that you never know that they're doing for families and people fogs one wasn't such a tough question again. Thank you for being here. I have a few more notes for afterward after podcast. Okay thank you for allowing me to ask questions. Thank you so much for taping the show reiter for making this again so professional they make the podcast happen and we also have the support of Iberia Bank and Lafayette General Health. And they they really keep this going so I want to thank our sponsors in our listeners. A hope you enjoyed this. I enjoy every time I see. Bridge Do Corp. brigid do Golfing Police Department. You have you've brightened up my understanding of what it means to be you know Someone that enforces the laws in our community and also makes our community a better place. So thank you thank you. Yeah so this podcast. In all of our podcast can be found several ways. First of all on discover Lafayette Dot net she can go to our website and bridget's is one of maybe about one hundred thirty five at this point we've got a great selection of people in our community that have given great interviews. You can also subscribe to our podcast by getting on your phone. Clicking the little purple icon you know the podcast icon and just type in discover Lafayette. Rj always laugh about the SUV Alexa. Oh I had to get special permission really yet to get your podcast out there but I want to thank people that listened us for your support so behalf discover Lafayette.

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IBERIABANKs Beth Ardoin and Beth Trotter  Discuss Work, Leadership and Investment in Community

Discover Lafayette

44:24 min | 1 year ago

IBERIABANKs Beth Ardoin and Beth Trotter Discuss Work, Leadership and Investment in Community

"This is John Swift and you're listening to discover Lafayette a podcast dedicated hated to the people and rich culture of Lafayette the gateway to South Louisiana how we record in the offices of Raider solutions a technology company that it offers complete fleet of it solutions for businesses of all sizes raiders motto. Is You just wanted to work. We understand if you're wondering if writer Peter can help your business. Please visit Raider Solutions Dot Com. I'd like to thank Iberia Bank for its support founded in eighteen eighty. Seven Iberia Bank is the largest bank based in Louisiana headquartered in Lafayette with three hundred twenty nine combined locations throughout the south they offer the resources of a National Bank Inc with the personal touch of a community bank visit Iberia Bank Dot Com for more information and lastly. I want to express my gratitude for Lafayette General Health as a Katy Anna's largest nonprofit community on regional health system. Lafayette General Health is committed to restoring maintaining and improving health in the communities it serves for more information visit Lafayette General Dot Com. We have two guests in the studio from Iberia Bancorporation Today. I I'd like to introduce Beth or Gwen who has been with the bank since two thousand two with the background in print media in publishing she currently serves a senior executive vice president and director of communications facilities in human resources as well as Chief of staff for CEO Daryl Bird Beth also serves on the board of directors of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta's New Orleans branch joining her about trotter who joined Iberia Bank ten years ago as the staff attorney and who is now an executive vice president and C. R. A. Officer C. R. A. Stands for the Community Reinvestment Act. A law directs spanks to help meet the credit needs of low and moderate income neighborhoods of the communities in which they operate. Beth is a graduate of Tulane Law School in an active board member of Habitat Tat for humanity having served as the women bill chair in two thousand seventeen and twenty eighteen so beth one and Beth to be one and B two as you tell me welcome to discover cover Lafayette. Thanks for having US yeah having this chain. I've been looking forward to this for so many reasons first of all thank you both on behalf of Iberia Bank for Sponsoring Our podcast. It's really really been much appreciated and I'm really excited about the opportunity for you to let people get to know you and what you do for the bank and opportunities for women women in leadership positions so Beth Arden. If we can start with you you have really moved up the ranks. Now you started out in in media is that yes is that correct and you talk about that sure started out as a sales executive for the times of ACADIAN A- way back when after college when it was owned by Steve May and Jerry Fisher May and really I've been so fortunate to have sort of two stops in my career both with the Thai one with the times and the second with Iberia having a chance to work with leaders executives who really believe in women's advancement in the workplace creative leaders really believe in thinking out of the box and really approaching life from different angles so right really too great to great opportunities in my career riot and when I said moving up the ranks what I'm really referring to is you've earned these positions and I didn't WanNa Miss Speak on that but you have had some opportunities that I think a lot of people are just you know to get to serve on the the board of the Federal Reserve Bank and all this if you can talk about what your role all is I bury a bank and and what led you to to have that opportunity on the Federal Reserve. Yes thank you I joined the bank at a time when it was really in Transition Sarrebourg bird his senior team our senior team had just joined the company and the bank was being converted from a thrift to a more traditional commercial bank and so so as a small company just serving Louisiana at the time Darryl really wanted to focus on marketing communication public relations efforts that were more tailored toward our target audience which were privately held businesses commercial businesses that we really could serve best so I came on board at that time and really focused on public relations as the company grew and changed think as Jerry mentioned back in the spring when you had them here we've done more than twenty five acquisitions over the seventeen years or so have been there so we really have grown and expanded across the southeast and with that came the opportunity to to take on more responsibility ability everything from facilities which is the management of are least An- own facilities to our expanded marketing efforts I and human resources as well which is pretty interesting part of the job why thirty six hundred associates yeah so I'm looking back you joined before Katrina and Rita eight ahead which was a pivotal year for Louisiana in two thousand five and then just within a couple years after that that is really when they explosive growth of Iberia Bank began. I know it's continued but your role had to expand pretty dramatically I mean how many states are you in nail. We're in assay. A nine zero nine states bank Lebanon to offer Mortgage Ryan our mortgage office yet influx right now we've had some changes with mortgage but yes so we have our first sort of jump out of Louisiana was into Arkansas and then both through acquisitions and de Novo initiatives we've jumped across the southeast so Florida Texas the Carolinas Georgia Alabama so we really have a wide footprint across that region right now. I've spoken with Judy Lucerne who works with you in your marketing department and the markets that you're in while they're mainly. I guess the south southeast southern part of the US the markets are different and so what people are expecting from banking and Louisiana. I'm sure quite different than South Florida right. We've got retirees and the high percentage of Wealth Fund. I mean our jobs gone because you know while we crossed. We're we're a large regional bank now. Well we really make sure we continue to customize our experience for our clients and our brand in those markets so what we do from a marketing standpoint and a client service standpoint in Key West certainly differs from what we do in Atlanta Houston Dallas or New York so we make sure that through people like judy some of our great teammates teammates that the experience for our clients is very customized we we have obviously common brand and common mission statement that we all live by but but we deliver a very personalized experience through people like Judy leaders like Jerry throughout our footprint right. Do you have to travel a lot for your position listen. I do travel quite a bit. I mean everything from visiting the markets to conferences or other special engagements that we signed up at for It's just hard to believe bank. That's gotten this big. It's still based right here right here and Acadian so south trotter if we can jump over to your role at the bank and then I want to let you both talk after that you are you work under the CR a the community reinvestment act and I know you started out as a staff attorney attorney and you've you've earned this position also and it's something that I've heard about a lot just in the real estate you know in the workup done but would you explain explain what you do and what Iberia Banks Role is in that in helping low to moderate income communities share so the community reinvestment officer manages the community outreach outreach programs and the mortgage products and the specialized products that we have throughout the company so we're in nine states from the bank perspective bank branches in nine states so what I do is I managed that program and so at a high level community reinvestment is about lending investment and service to low income communities and very small businesses and so managing our program and put forth our team throughout the footprint right in so while you do that while you're assisting people that might have some issues in getting a conventional loan you still have have to focus on safe and sound lending practices and that's of course part of the regulation is Um to help communities and small businesses in a safe and sound banking men or so of course that's an overarching arching concern and that remains the case even even though you know Sierra does make special products we make specialized products in the TDA checking accounts. Don't savings accounts mortgage programs mortgage grants so we do a lot of things that are especially targeted but within safe and sound banking practices always so what what how does it work like if somebody is trying to establish good credit. They've got a small business. They want to start up. How do people know about this. Is it something you market directly early or people. How do they find out about these programs. We do we we. We'd have a myriad of different you know different products in targeting different types of folks of definitely we do small business outreach we work with nonprofit partners in communities. Such as habitat for humanity are united way or urban league. We do a lot in fact just had a couple of calls this morning with Urban League where you're going to partner with entrepreneurships nor ships centers who are focused on women and small women and minority owned small business in New Orleans so that's a new partnership that we're creating. We'll be working with entrepreneurship centers in several markets ARQUETTE's Atlanta New Orleans and Houston as well so we we reach out to nonprofit partners across the footprint to create strong partner partner working relationships and so that is one way that we do outreach we also do a lot of marketing. If you look at the home mortgage side for example we have five specialized one in house created created special ed portfolio product but we five specialists products for Sierra so we look for the opportunities to market whether it's facebook traditional print material emails we have a marketing group in mortgage you know sort of specifically targets those opportunities and we also have partners throughout the footprint we work with housing counseling being agencies how to prove partners that we give money to donate any money to them to support their programming and their efforts and we also have grant program where we sponsor downpayment assistance so we give away up to one thousand first responders five thousand or first time homebuyers four thousand dollars and that's a grant. That's a gift that we are providing providing to those homeowners to help down payment. Assistance in closing costs only covers quite a bit so people have to qualify obviously and then this is something that the federal government has imposed on banks now right. We said well we encouraged or are you. Directed Sierra is a federal a loss you. You have to meet the needs in. That's a very broad umbrella so but there is a test we we get examined by the Fellers Bank of Atlanta about every three years three to four years so there's there are three components lending investment service but within those components we are at liberty to do a great deal of different things so the federal law does not mandate us to do anything very specific specific. Let me give this mini grants. Give the grant program is optional. We created that because we wanted to to do it. There are a lot of banks that do not have grant programs similarly. We created created a portfolio mortgage product. What that means we created a specialized product that we offer and we don't sell it most banks. this is a bit of minutia maybe but Amini regional banks and most small banks will sell their loans so you originate alone and then you sell it to a larger third party software so that's very very common but we created a portfolio product that we hold in house within our mortgage company we service that for the life of the loan and those are specialized products geared only to first time homebuyers so we're pretty proud of that we create that product special four for our group for Sierra and then like I said the Mortgage Grant Program that we instituted about six years ago. We spent just oh just last year over one point five million and so we gave away one point five million dollars. Just I members we gave away over three million dollars for Sarah related causes in general but specifically one point five million in mortgage grants and we're over. I believe we're close to a million this year and we'll go over that against September third yeah so pretty exciting. It's a it's a huge investment and it's we feel really well. Well well worth it. It's we see a lot of impact for. It's the repayment rates are pretty good like people they satisfy their mortgage. We still have credit scores and there's still a lot of requirements and we're not we're not giving the loan it's alone when it's not a gift and of course folks have to qualify we have slightly less stringent standard slightly lower credit score a little bit of Alternative Credit Score Abe illnesses uses maybe traditional products now you've been so involved with habitat for humanity and that's a great example of where you can leverage your community resources the banks thanks volunteers and get deserving people in homes that would never have had a chance without those partnerships being played and we're partnered with probably twelve to fifteen habitat affiliates. It's across our nine state footprint. I of course I'm very partial to our Lafayette Habitat for five years and they do amazing work and tend to twelve houses per year earm- really excited to be on the board. I've been with Bill Chair as you indicated fast two years what's Nice about that relationship and we have many such relationships with our nonprofit partners throughout the footprint is we call it the sort of CRA truck factor so we have a line of credit to them. So we have a loan habitat. I sit on the board and we have numerous other volunteers. We have that service service hours hours aspect and then we also donate money to them every year and we buy from them on the back end as I mentioned most smaller banks will sell loans. LAFAYETTE HABITAT HABITAT is a lender mortgage lender so they originate loans and we buy them that I see what's more capital back into the organization to do more lending so we're pretty proud of that relationship and as as I mentioned we have several of strong affiliate partnerships throughout the footprint that resemble that setup what I've always been impressed with too not just habitat but in particular the habitat that there's such a low default rate pl are excited to give their homes a they make their obligations single digits false. It's very impressive and that goes to the speaks to the amount of time spent with each of those individuals so they each one hundred hours of work on their homes as well as other folks homes in this case usually the mccomb visa neighborhood which is where we're focused. Lafayette right now but also they have a lot of financial literacy literacy. Excuse me classes. They also have home maintenance glasses of courses they. I fully understand the financial burden. They're accepting their challenge. They're taking and they understand what they need to do to keep that I know amenable to their total title financial package in their picture and they're all working at least one job many of them to jobs and and they as you indicate they want their home. They're taught how to manage money a little oh better maybe than they were before and they're also taught how to maintain their homes. I think we could all use those classes though no matter what income rambler background so Beth aardwolf and you've been sitting there nodding is about it's been talking about this. You have to keep up not only with what Beth is doing with. Cra But your job encompasses everything the thing that Iberia Bank is doing. Are there some initiatives no one. I had Jerry Vasca cute here earlier in the year. We talked about the opportunity zone. There's so many things going going on in banking. I mean you've got to keep your finger. If you've got to stay current on everything well the you know the great thing is I work with people like this who become experts in in their area and Beth has become a true expert that people across the country turn to about. Cra says he really has done a fantastic job bribery bank but also for the industry she really has become a sought after an expert so fortunate to work with her and many other leaders like her in the bank. you know we're we're in a privileged position. We recognize that where we get a chance to focus on equality for people within the company and outside the company Iberia Bank has such a community minded spirit about about it that we take very seriously so in through bathroom. Cra more through other charitable partnerships or through other learning learning opportunities were really focused on again our internal clients and our external clients and making sure that their lives are enriched through their experiences with us right before we started the podcast has to we were speaking about women in leadership and I think it's just industry-wide in banking in insurance rents other financial sectors probably about one in five of the top leaders or leadership team or women and I'm sitting here with two with Iberia Bank but which touch on that some Beth are on about what you've seen because I know you're getting like a national view from your position with preparing for the podcast. I was trying to think about you know the last twenty years or so and I think the conversation early on was really about either stayed home and you were stay at home mom or you're a working king. Mom and I think the conversation today is completely different right where women fifty percent of the workforce is women now in so I think the conversation is really there for women too. It's not about whether or not you're GONNA work. It's it's how you're going to be successful at working and making sure you're providing a great life of your family and so I think it's a great time for women in the workplace. Certainly the financial industry has lagged a little bit when you look at the top of the House and how many female leaders are sitting in that the the top C. Suite but the industry certainly has changed in there lots of opportunities. I mean we look at our company lots of women in leadership positions Brian. I think it's just a little bit of a hangover from the past but there's no better time than now I think for women to really find their spot and take take opportunities that there for them right you know and I think back about it. Many of the the mail bankers said I know that our top feels they've been in banking their whole life and so they've they've just like YouTube. They've worked their way up. earning you know promotions and leadership roles but they tend to stay in banking and so oh you have to have positions open right fill them with younger men women people of all backgrounds and so that's probably part of it and in other fields you might see people hopping around more from company to company but in banking they might move from bank to bank but they stay in that industry and so. I I guess that's what you're saying. Though yeah I think having a great retention rate for our company but like you said for the industry bankers like to bankers and so I think that provides potentially a few opportunities to advance at a faster rate but I definitely see the industry changing and improving and and and Beth out on the in the speaker circuit as well and she sees I'm sure are the same a lot of women who are in great leadership positions making a difference right so you serve on the Federal Reserve Board and when I when I learned that I guess you know a few years back I was so impressed I mean they. They set policy right you. You provide data on the industry is well yes so now retired but as of a served until last December and it was a it's a big honor so the way that the the advisory boards work is that each district has advisory boards in its main cities so I served on the Sixth District New Orleans Advisory Board which is basically cly seven people by law only two can be bankers so of the seven people the the commitment is to bring on the ground information anti-dole information about what's really happening in our local economies back to the district back to the economists who are thin advising the policy makers so it's it's a great sort of grass level route in a grassroots effort to bring real information to those that are making decisions so if I if I may ask even though you're not serving anymore and publicized for not having that correct on my show notes where is Louisiana compared to the rest of the South East. I mean I read the paper and hear about our jobs. You're lagging. That's those kind of things your reporting but little yes those are the things that are being reported as as well as you know all the different the sixth district is reports up to Atlanta so it's a it's a big district including Florida and parts of Alabama Mississippi so oh they're different economic cycles happening even within that one district so those of us though representing certain geographic areas do report on that and and also talk about what creative solutions may be on the horizon to try to help with job with jobs in your market so that'll affect at some point interest rates or yes how how does it alter out like us up basically the information bubbles up and then the obviously the policy makers news or using that information to decide on how they're. GonNa vote on interest rates there's so many things that go into our economic conditions and I think about just even when the president tweets something about tariffs. I'm sure that sins markets it's fascinating. It's fascinating process and then yeah the tide stern so it's about our way on we've talked about you have proximity thirty six hundred employees throughout Iberia Bank Doc. I understand there's some mentorship programs. There are some programs in place that can help people. You know find out more about the business how they can grow and Can you talk about that. Some absolutely we're really proud of the progress we're making banks industry to happens to be heavily female even though not at the top of the top of the company our companies about sixty percent female but we want to put programs in place to for for males and females emails but some that are specifically designed for females to make sure that we are advancing people throughout the company so just over the last couple of years. We've made tremendous strides writes in that area we have hired a diversity and inclusion officer. Monica Sylvain who's really fabulous she resides New Orleans but she's responsible for DNA across the company and with her addition we started diversity and Inclusion Council which encompasses people from across the company all different different layers in the company and it's been a really interesting group of people we think we know so much until you actually bring people to to the table and hear about their daily lives their perspectives what they think we can do better so that that council I think has done and will continue to to really help us. push people through the company in a much faster pace we also started mentorship program about two years ago and everyone throughout the company is eligible to participate in it really has opened up the dialogue between people with people across the company so so as I mentioned we have a wide footprint and so there are many many associates who will never actually meet in person this gives people a chance to you know build relationships. CBS across geographic lines across areas of responsibility and and help support ask questions that they need answer to help them advance in their careers yeah yeah and one more thing we did start women unlimited it's a national program but we selected about twenty one females female leaders jers who already leaders in budding leaders and our company to participate and Beth actually is one of the participants and the bax four has been fantastic. It's a it's a really life changing experience for them so we're really proud of what we're doing there. Beth Trott you WanNa talk some about that I will I'm in the fourth corps covert so I'll tell you that I actually don't start the programs uh-huh specifically until later this winter but super exciting like I have had the opportunity to mentor four people over the past two years and the great thing about about that program is it's a nine you know stressful way for the younger you know less seasoned members of our our team to speak to someone confidentially. WHO's not their boss WHO's not not? HR But can ask just any question they like a safe place to be open and as best said they're all the companies have people several men men ts here but also have one in New Orleans one in Birmingham Birmingham. We've never met but we talk on the phone. Once a month he was from a year and a half ago but the program is structured to be six months and you have scheduled calls once a month for six months but an invariably invariably talked to those people forever so I mean t still talk go on all the time she's great and she someone moving up in a company she is a female who will go far and integrate things and so and and she's. I think she would tell tell you what she's told me. Is You know really benefit from having the ability to pick up and call call. Beth kinda just anytime anywhere. No one's going to get reported back. I just GONNA ask her okay. What I do my bosses sending me mixed signal. What do you think about this you know and so it's ability to share been working for over twenty years and she's only been working for you know say five and so oh it's a great program and I know other companies do have programs but this one is. I feel extremely successful. Because the regular conversation that happens with all committee's even though the program six months come gone for some of them were all also in communication and I can remember when I started working at a law firm in New Orleans in Nineteen ninety-four. You've love to have that yeah wondered partners who were talk with but it wasn't a structured program and I know that there were probably a couple associates who who didn't have that report with anyone senior and I think it makes a world of difference and I'm proud of our our our company really leading that in pushing it and really big way and same with women unlimited. I mean we do have six percent of our workforce well. They're not in the C. Suite but we have a few leadership. We have strong women leaders and this program is a huge financial investment. It's a huge investment in the capital of our associates and we'll you know it's gonNA benefit us all individually but it's also going to benefit and brass up as a company and you know so super or exciting. I've talked to several women who've already gone through the cohorts one through three already ongoing and they have just said it's amazing. I mean your ability to rethink How you're doing your job every day. How you're leading people how you working with your teams heavy responding to those above you in the sweet and you know my Caso. I'm extremely excited. It's it's again. It's a huge investment and capital associates in time and energy of our of our company some. I'm excited that they're doing it and can't wait to participate WANNA resource. I just you know when you were talking talking about your young days as an attorney and same for me. I didn't have anybody I could really go to and there is no safe place right. I mean you didn't show any vulnerability and sometimes you have to write right. You just don't know what's the best move but having this has got to be just a joy voice. Yes and I think all asked all programs. We just is touched on has empowered our females to have a voice it gives them a platform teammate you know and the confidence is a confidence offense builder to say we believe in you investing in you and we're giving you the ability to have a voice so they can speak for themselves along these lines banking banking is a people business. It's a service industry yet. It's been disrupted by technological advancements and I wanted to save Yucca touch on Matt in whatever way you feel comfortable but I know when I go in Nigeria bank branches. There are tellers physical people but not all banks have that anymore and things research changing so fast so I guess two questions you know. How is it affecting Iberia Bank in second if someone is listening and interested in a bank in career I mean what paths do you take are you. It or is this question making sounds a dancer changes. Absolutely I mean I think all industries. These are changing right. There's so many disruptors coming out as faster than ever before but certainly the banking industry it has its its share of it. P think back to being in line with you know how you re using your card writing a check. That's no longer a conversation so today's. Today's disrupters are pretty intimidating. EMINATING the top four banks in the country you know own the the lion share of deposits and they have the ability to can't continue to be disruptors in our industry industry so for those of us that are not the top four we have to continue to think about and make sure we own and understand the responsibility of maintaining relationships chips and that's the value of having people right is exerting tain their relationships and so even in Lafayette. I'm sure that's what you're alluding to. one of the major banks has removed tellers from their branches and try. They're trying to focus just on technology. it doesn't feel good yeah. We're not there yet. We're not. They and I don't see us going. We truly believe you know. We're still a commercial bank. We still while it certainly Acadian. We offer a lot of consumer banking opportunities we really believe in relationships in that is still part of a critical part of our foundation so there are lots different parts of the bank for for people to work in as we see young people come through either internships or in a training program. Almost everyone immediately says wow I didn't realize realized banking offered so many different types of career opportunities not just being a traditional banker so it certainly Cra compliance and compliances appliances that is is a big deal definitely a growing part of the company of the industry. audit accounting finance marketing lots the different aspects of the company in indefinitely tremendous number of career opportunities. That's exciting yes. You don't think about that just think banking so they don't have to just have a business degree. It could be anything from accounting counting to legal legal there. You Go back yeah big legal team with. I'm not part of that team anymore. But it's good it's good. It's now number numerous banger numerous lawyers throw yeah. I WANNA get an a plug for one of your employees. Sheila tiptoe is a good friend of mine and last Friday. I did a cash closing where it was several hundred thousand dollars and you don't see those a lot without alone but it was a cash purchase and so I needed to wire money and I hadn't done that in a few years. I used to have a big practice register would pick up the phone and do water transfers but that isn't the case right now so I thought who is. GonNa help me with us and I called she loved and I I just loved having a person person that I trusted and we went through together but it just I was uncomfortable because to me it's like there goes the money would if I don't put the right little one little digit and he goes to the wrong place so I really enjoy having those personal relationships and in particular with Iberia. We banks these guys yeah yeah she goes. We're here with Jason. Sikora and you have been busy writing notes over here have some questions you hidden a couple of them a little bit so. I want to dig in as well first of all. Thank you for being here. I love the B WanNa be too. That's awesome so you do a lot of different stuff apparently like it's finance marketing synergy project management. What drew you to this kind of position for me Beth. It's really it was really the opportunity to say yes us to do something. I'd never done before and that really has as Jan started the podcast that was her question is while you've moved up the ranks kind of what got you there just for me. My experience has been of course working with fabulous people who believed in me but just saying yes I mean I've taken on responsibilities through the years that had no idea how that was going to pan out or really had no experience in and just taking a leap of faith breath really makes a huge difference love that answer we talk we talk about that in a previous podcast has jumped in the river and see where it goes be to how about you all have a similar answer in that when I so going way back I lived in New Orleans for Katrina. My family decided to move here post Katrina so moved here in one year after I didn't work for ten years so I went once. I you know you make it pivots in life so you know I turned and forty and said what am I gonNa do with this law degree. It's now or never and just so happened that fortuitous managed to judge my kill in this court federal courthouse needed Komo emergency sort of fill in lachler so it was amazing. It was like friend of a friend you'll go back to work. Wow this job just opened. He needs someone he his clerks taking a leave of absence and with him on a Friday got my badge afternoon. E hard man started Monday morning had ten years. That was fun. It was great fun actually so I was with him almost six months and so great way to Segue back into practicing law that had been in a firm in New Orleans so didn't know a whole bunch of lawyers Aaron Lafayette and then I knew them all after Corcoran from to tell and so I had an opportunity to work. I think I had three law firm offers finish that job but you know interestingly our CEO Dairibord called me to be on the board of Trustees of our kids school and USA because he was rolling off and I said well thinking about going back to work and he's like oh well. You got to come talk doc meals. Let's talk both right. So course I ended up talking with him at three law firm offers and I thought and I've been a law firm so I know how to do that. I knew that job well but then I had this really cool bank opportunity and thought you know what he's a mover and Shaker this bank is I knew enough about the bank to know they were growing doing and I thought you know what that's going to be way more interesting a lot more fun and sure enough it has been and still is today so it was a good choice ten years long bon very cool so you talked about. disruptors reminded me about a month ago. I got a check for my mortgage company because they're paid too much escrow and went. I have to go to the bank. Now I find some time and then I was like no I can use my phone and deposit this. This is so amazing. What are there any new technologies and say the next few years as you guys have seen it that might disrupt things even a little bit more because I've heard I mean those polls online so that tellers are going away and everything's GonNa be electronic. Ron and things will be on your phone and have you seen any new technologies that are gonNa really well no not the it world the technology world but no. I mean certainly as you just mentioned the ability for for clients to bank wherever they are twenty four seven is an amazing the opportunity for for clients and for banks to really think about how to deliver their products and services interestingly if you think about it banks like ours even as we add more technology we've still held onto the original delivery system so while we have fewer branches than before we still have branches we still have bankers we still have ATM's we still have checks and now we have of course credit cards and debit cards and remote capture deposit deposit capture here at Iberia. If you banked with us you could you can of course deposit your checks into the ATM in your cash so there there's always going to be emerging technology and certainly they'll be continuing disruptors for sure well auto data that is while definitely. I'll turn delivery. livery electronic banking is the way of the future but it's not going to replace the branches in what the FDIC studies have shown. You're in you're out. They do study every other year. Branching ranching is that while folks are moving to alternative delivery as an additional way of banking they still want to walk into branch every once in a while so and that that's true regardless of your income so that's low middle upper doesn't matter what your income level is at some point you still want to go in a bank and so that's not going away so as. Beth has indicated we have definitely shrunk our footprint. Brent and and you know have have pruned branches because they are not seeing as much foot traffic as they used to but those alternate delivery methods are not going to replace branches so branches are critically important still and will remain in particularly in the low income neighborhoods as well as everywhere else so you know. I think that the next wave will be all fully electronic loan docs. You know you don't have the ability to open or close all different types of loans today you can use unlimited loan closings on online but really that one still requires paper and so you can open up you can open accounts online but I think we'll see more of electronic everything everything eight z all the different types but that's still in progress right now. That would be a miracle host to the three inch stack. I think we're getting to that yeah and I think in a community like Acadia where we love relationships right. We like to into the same table and break bread. having a tangible brand. I think still matters ladders. I think so too and you know we had on Jason a couple months ago. David Joseph he's the US attorney for the western district and he was talking about how banks thanks such as yours and others really with technology now they can detect fraud so much quicker and it helps protect people against scams because they'll see trends and they'll see deposits deposits being made that looked kind of fishy and I know all the technology that we don't even see behind the scenes is really where a lot of your services are by helping protect. Act Your depositors. Absolutely I mean we've we. It's it's our responsibility right to. s- to stay current with the latest and greatest ability to protect our clients. It's insane. We absolutely do that yeah. That's coming from an IT company. It's so tough to keep up with but it's important that's what we have so many graphs on the screens and here's he's we see in the world and we have to hop on it right away advice for females who want to get into finance do what you do he mhm so we both. I think see ourselves as nonfinancial bankers wearing clearcutting in legal yes yeah we we have we have wonderful responsibilities but we're not bankers but as I mentioned earlier there's so many different aspects of of a bank whether you're coming in from the financial side to be a banker or from the financial side to be in finance or accounting compliance is really an emerging field. audit is still an important part of the bank. BSA as John Just mentioned Bank secrecy at we have a large of people committed to to to be essay and that's really really important in the banking industry so I could go on and on with the lots of probably surprising opportunities within banks. Thanks in addition to just the traditional financial garage but you don't have to Nestle study finance to go work at a bank excellent be to question. I love that I really do big shoutout to habitat for humanity and can you just talk about. Maybe for a minute about what they do sure. I'm happy to and I feel bad. I should still the thunder Melinda Taylor. Maybe you'll have your cast. HABITAT IT broadly sleep is helping people realize their dream of home ownership and it's a hand up. It's not a handout so the program some people the misconception that habitat just gives houses to people like like they won the lottery or something is very far from the truth in fact homeowners have an application process. We go through their one or two rounds per year. We're about entering. We're actually about inner around right now. Suave Hundreds of applicants for maybe twenty slots available they go through rigorous financial counseling they do hard labour in and construction of their homes and helping others in the mccomb visa neighborhood which is where we're focused right now they have to have their credit standards. They do look at alternative credit. Let like renter phone bills. You know cell phone bills. Maybe the traditional credit terms don't look at but there is still a minimum sort of credit requirement limit as well and those those homeowners will go through approximately a two year program before they ever get the keys to their house and again. It's highly organized structured structured programming around home maintenance a financial literacy which we Barry Bank teach financial literacy and and all of our markets including helping habitat do that when they need so you know it's fairly rigorous program and it is it's zero interest loan when we give a donation to habitat and they get federal funding as well as a five five. Oh One C. three non profit. We're helping people with the affordability of the house but they are still buying the home. They are signing a mortgage. They're closing habitat is is actually closing that loan for homeowner and they do have a much smaller cost because of the money that is donated in-kind goods that are donated make the home cheaper than otherwise would be so it's under two hundred thousand dollars to buy a really nice quality three bedroom home and so it's it is truly a hand up rather than a handout and it's a wonderful program again as agenda two. It's got those mortgages at very low like less than five percent default rates these homeowners these hunters pay their their bills on time they ended up owning a home and it's a change of a lifetime for them because they are now invested invested in an asset that they own and then it's helping their future generations as well and it raises property values everyone revitalizing neighborhoods that that had been neglected for a while and you can see the difference. Is You know the the core of Lafayette in other towns to it is. We just wish we could do more homes but money. He doesn't grow on trees but it's it's a critically important program. Thank you for mentioning that I thought it because you've talked about it and I've about five have boxes of vinyl saw fit for habitat for humanity and if they were open this Saturday I would've went but restored at the Liberty Week and they were suppose so but no during my Rajini down the radio and we also donated this massive shelving unit. We had to actually have them out and take it apart. It was so big it wouldn't fit our front door so great great good to your house and the nicest people in the world and I know this is about Iberia Bank but just want to give it to them now. So thank you both for being here your this has been awesome and Jan obviously always thank you for letting me ask that question. Thank you Jason. Thanks for taping this show of course solutions for helping us while I want to thank thank both Beth arden and Beth trotter B one and B two again kidding you guys but thank both baths for taking time out of your work day to come share. Not only would I be bank does is but just share opportunities for all of us in the banking industry and I'd like to thank our listeners to for being so loyal you can find this podcast and all of our podcast at discover Lafayette Dot net. Are you can subscribe by going to the little icon on your found. It's a low podcast icon and you can have this delivered to your phone. Every Friday moreover release our latest podcast on behalf of discover. Lafayette on Jan swept yeah.

Iberia Bank Daryl Bird Beth Lafayette New Orleans Atlanta Louisiana Seven Iberia Bank Jason Iberia Bank Dot Com Beth arden Judy Lucerne Sierra Iberia Bank Doc Iberia Bancorporation Cra Beth trotter Katrina
Reece Theriot, Fulcrum Sales and Marketing, on Surviving and Thriving in Uncertain Economic Times

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1:04:17 hr | 1 year ago

Reece Theriot, Fulcrum Sales and Marketing, on Surviving and Thriving in Uncertain Economic Times

"This is John Swift and you're listening to discover Lafayette podcast dedicated to the people and rich culture of Lafayette the gateway to South Louisiana. Enough we tape in the offices of Raider a hands on. It service provider that integrates all of your needs for advanced technical support. Effective communication options and cybersecurity raiders motto. Is You just want it to work? We understand please. Visit Raiders Solutions Dot Com for more information. I'd like to thank Iberia. Bank our premier sponsor. They support our community in so many ways and their dynamic team is committed to serving the banking needs of clients in this region and throughout the southeastern United States. Iberia Bank offers the resources of a national bank with the personal touch of a community bank. Please visit Iberia Bank Dot Com for more information the generosity of Lafayette General Health. Also makes this podcast possible and we thank them for. Being a premier sponsor as Acadian is largest nonprofit regional health system. Lafayette General Health is committed to restoring maintaining and improving health in the communities. It serves for more information visit. Lafayette General Dot Com. Our guest. Today is Reese Terio. The fulcrum sales and marketing reese is an in demand presenter on how to ensure effective sales and marketing campaigns he has an MBA from US Lafayette and was an instructor of sales. Marketing and entrepreneurship. Reese was also the head coach of the sales team with the US. Lafayette Moody College of Business. With the pandemic shutting down most of our economy. The last six weeks these are trying times for business owners. I'm looking forward to hearing racist thoughts on using the best tools to market effectively re stereo. Welcome to discover Lafayette James. Thank you for that introduction and thanks for having Me Yeah. You're you really are in demand presenter you bring an engaging presence to the stage and. I know we're all looking forward to hearing you think next week with the Small Business Development Roundtable I think. If you're still on the agenda we're all looking forward to hearing some tips about how we can all learn more about marketing. Our business and also probably things not to do. So you WanNa tell us about your background before we jump into that. What got you absolutely absolutely. I am very much looking forward to that station as well I'll try not to double their content too much because I think I think the whole theme of that presentation is similar to what our conversation is. GonNa be about today So I guess I can start by you. Know kind of sharing story And be briefed with my story and then kind of wrap that up into what's going on today all right and and kind of start going down the trail of some of the some of recommendations that I've that I've gotten from some of my mentors and from some of the subject matter experts that I follow and some of the books on kind of from some of the things that we've experienced that fulcrum my team and I and and so last story is raised in a small town called Cata Hula which is right next to Saint Martin Bill and so when you grow up in a town like you really grow up into the next biggest city so I usually say I'm from Saint Martin and so had a normal childhood Was bullied a lot as a kid. Which kind of fueled my my sense of wanting to be unique and kind of be kind of blazing trail because I was really accepted? Bomb appears all that much or I just. Maybe I shouldn't say that I had conflict as as a child and so A really good student and I was very involved with with the church instill in today. And so anytime you you mesh those two things together in in an eight year old. You know there's GonNa be subsequent bullying to follow and so You know had a had to really good role models that and my mother and Followed my dad's advice all my life and and so my mom and my dad always said that knowing my personality I would either be a lawyer. I would be a holiday. A lawyer a sales person or a politician and that as a compliment out was a compliment. So you know I guess I guess I was always the performer in the group When I was a kid my parents used to make us make all kinds of arts and crafts and settlement the local farmers market and Crashes stopped selling I learn how to Juggle Rodman UNICYCLE and GONNA put on a low performance in front of my booth and I'd make more money to than I would in crafts sales And so but I guess that kind of always following me that entrepreneurial bug and you know All my life both in high school and college and Grad School. I've always had like a little entrepreneurial. Venture MO first real exposure to sales was right after undergraduate degree. Cy graduated in public relations. And as you know a lot of PR majors no all there we have a very solid PR curriculum you l. But unfortunately our local market Lafayette at large. Is it really a place where public relations professionals can pride right? They're just not a whole lot of demand for publicist local town. Publicist really thrive in like big cities. are working for big corporations and big cities especially as so. I learned really quickly that although I was very well trained. Pr Really wasn't a career for me. Because I didn't really WANNA move. I wanted to plant roots in in Lafayette and grow something here so I got into sales selling medical equipment medical devices. I worked for the largest sports medicine device company in the nation called Arthur rex and arthritis. We sold all different types of medical devices Implants screws plates Suture barriers devices to help with soft tissue in Embalm repairs and so that was pretty challenging position especially being twenty one years. Old coming out of college never had taken an anatomy class. You know I remember my first day on the job. I didn't even know what a Patella was. Which is a NEAT NEAT chat ball? I had no idea that was and a lot of those. Go out around here right right. It sounds like a vegetable coming up so alice trying to just thrown to the wolves and drinking through a fire. Hose with that new job and and I started to realize that I had a knack for asking questions listening to people and really understanding what they what they wanted what they wanted for more threats and then our go find it and I'll bring it back to them and sell it quote unquote sell it to them right and you know my my manager after watching you do that over and over and over again without even getting a commission for any of the sales. Because when I first started wasn't a condition it was like okay reese recent. Do this you know we we gotta get into the field talking. Doxa and doing doing the thing and so I was promoted about a year and a half and and became a full bag Rep for about a year and a half and then became a district. Shrimp specialists saw a specialized in And in in feet wrist and ankle repairs. It had had a great. Did that for about four years. I transitioned into the role that you were speaking about. Which is Teaching Sales and marketing and entrepreneurship at you. L. Leading the sales team when I when I started teaching twenty four years old. I would lie lied students about my age all the time because he's still at very young so I did. I did and I mean I was teaching twenty three year old. You know twenty twenty one to twenty three hours twenty four so yeah it was. It was again it was it was a challenging environment for medical sales. Where every physician I was working with had been practicing medicine longer than I have been a teenager. You know I mean they were. They were operating on people when olives in second grade and so I had to come in and tell them how to do their job in some respect and I was a very challenging thing for me to learn how to do in a humble and quizzes and in polite but direct conaway and then when I went into education at you oh I had to kind of flip the script and and also took a lot of that that information with me and had to speak from a place of authority. Even though I didn't really have a whole lot of authority you know I was going to say I never even. I never took sales marketing when I was in college and so I'm trying to picture. These young students are eager to have careers. Hopefully you know what you're teaching them and Do People do they realize when they're in these classes at maybe? I'm not cut out to be a salesperson or does that happen once you're out in the field they know a lot of them will will realize that while they're in the classroom So to kind of speak towards sales on the as a entry level profession you know I think the data is somewhere around. Eighty nine percent of first level first year graduates coming out of business. School especially marketing programs will go into sales of their first career And if you look at a lot of CEO's and and executives a lot of them started their career in sales so sales sales profession is kind of the the bedrock of any career with any almost any business to business company. And so we really harp on that. You will in training quickly. So that when they get into that first job they're prepared they can be successful. It puts on a path to success. And because you know that's GonNa that's GonNa reflect good on. The students like good on that on the educator and it's going to reflect on the university in those classes are really geared to wear So the the way the class works. Is You know I at first half of the semester. Were really teaching them how how to be good listeners. How to be people of Integrity Kind of the basics about professionalism in about sales and in the second half of the class were really focusing on. How do they appropriately? Have the conversation with someone who's interested in buying up their service And so we do that through a series of role place where they sit down with a fictitious buyer and they have that sales conversation. It's videotaped and educator is reviewing the tapes in grading the conversation with a rubric and so there's there's a sense of pressure there right and there's a sense of there's a stage to perform on in in sales is kind of like that and so if someone's uncomfortable with that environment where they gotta walk in a room and really put out the enthusiasm and asking questions have that road good conversation and pushed people a little bit. If they're uncomfortable with that being they're probably going to be uncomfortable right with sales as a profession right and we were joking about that. Before the PODCAST. Podcast started race about Alec Baldwin's Character Blade Glengarry Glen. Ross he's that Blake gave that famous scene always be closing. Abc's when he was talking to people. Really just berating them. These group of guys didn't seem to motivated but sometimes people think I'm thinking about what your parents said about you to either. It'd be a lawyer politician. Our sales person there can be these stereotypes about you know not huckster but we can be lawyers. I can speak for that. We can be stereotyped but it sounds like it when when the kids are learning. They're really learning the right way to approach people and to give value when they're selling but that's not even it's not it's not and I think I think every profession comes with its own stigma. You know you can kind of go. Down a series of professions and and people will say. Oh you know like physicians have a God complex. You know they'RE EGOTISTICAL. Lawyer's oath lawyers are word merchants. They talk a lot right a lot and they sell it by word like you and you can count on every every profession. Has Its stereotype in their in their own. Stigma and sales definitely has that. Those stigma got pink are driven introduced by the worst of the worst any profession any profession. That's right and so I think I think. The role of of of the professional is to break that stigma very quickly by building massive amounts of rapport and trust with individuals. You know right Having a good reputation and letting that reputation proceed you in a conversation to where when you meet somebody. Oh yeah her name you know from X Y Z. And they have great things to say. I mean that CIGNA's going to go away even if you are a sales person right right or a lawyer or lawyer or a doctor or whatever whatever profession you are and I think that's really important to speak to Going Gary Glenn Ross. When when I was a teacher at U. L? Not Very First Class. I played that video every single class. You for nine semester street. Semesters yeah a what I was trying to do. Is Show them wear a showed? The students aware stereotype came from and that good sales people are not this now. There is an of competition. There's the element of Grit. There's an element of Kind of aggression in sales you know you have to be a go getter. You have to be willing to challenge people to think differently about their situation about their problems and about their business about themselves. You have to do that but when that swings all away to the Alec Baldwin Direction it sort of makes people think that these guys are just for for money and you know that's not exact any any good sales professional will tell you that. They're not that they're not that right. You don't WanNa ask you. We're all in sales aren't we? I didn't realize until later in life that we're all whatever it is if we're if we're in business whether we're lawyers are have a you know a little store on the corner. We're we're selling our wears. Well you know. We're all in the business of three things. Educating learning and motivated everyone is those three subsets of business that applies to anything you do in life. So you got to figure out how to motivate people if you want to influence change in yourself you gotta figure out what motivates you if you want to influence. Change in other people changing their behaviors. You have to find out what motivates them and and doing that means you have to ask questions you gotTa build reports so that they give me straight answers You've gotta listen effectively. You've got to spend time with people you've got to learn how to break down the wall so that you can have those conversations so you can get to the division and the next thing is you. Everyone's educator right is just what are you educating people on Lawyers Educate people on the law. They educate people on regulations. They educate people on how to win a case they educate people. On what what? What kind of suit do they have on their hands? You know that that's where it's an education game And I think that applies to everybody. Doctors you go to the doctor's office best doctors are the ones that are going to spend time with the patient and educate them about what's going on so that they feel comfortable right bell. All that's right that's right and it and if they realize that this patient wants to get better and they'll use that as motivation so that they can make a decision that will ultimately save their life or improve their quality light and then the final thing education motivation and learning right like I think the best professionals and salespeople are included in that are just lifelong learners constantly learning. What do people what do people need? What do people want? What does the House the market changing? How is For example House Kobe affecting change throughout society throughout community throughout my marketplace throughout the people that are buying my product or service throughout my team ever our best professionals are learners I think those three things Kinda worked together and in a joint effort race if he would. Let's hold that thought. I'd like to pause and thank rally marketing for sponsoring a new addition to our podcast discover Lafayette's past rally. Marketing is a full service digital marketing. Agency the CAN assist you with marketing automation content which engine optimization strategy or just show you how to use social media to turn into a moneymaker for your business. Our friends at rally marketing are there to help you navigate the maze of all the latest ways to market effectively online for more information visit rally marketing dot com and now a moment looking back on the history of the Highland Performing Arts Center architect a hays town designed the first municipal auditorium in Lafayette in one thousand nine hundred fifty seven under the direction of mayor. Jerome Dimaggio and Herbert Hyman. Their vision was to serve the eight parish area of South Louisiana. We now call Acadian. Construction on the auditorium was completed in one thousand nine hundred sixty and now sixty years later. We know the former municipal. As the Hyman Performing Arts Center located in the Oil Center the Auditorium has hosted untold numbers of dance recitals Broadway Musicals Concerts symphony performances in theater arts and of course Mardi Gras celebrations with a twenty one. Hundred Sixty eight seating capacity and state of the art acoustics the Highland Performing Arts Center continues to draw crowds. Who ENJOY NI- out on the town and making memories are hub city has certainly benefited from the foreside leadership of Jerome Dimaggio and Herbert Hyman. Okay Reese Terrier. Welcome back to discover. Lafayette let's talk about Your Business Fulcrum sales and marketing a lot of aren't comfortable with sales. Even if we know we have to sell our products and I know that you offer services and I thought you could share with us. Maybe some higher level ideas about what you call inbound and outbound marketing. I think these are things we know about but we may not know what the the lingo. So if you can talk about how you help people right absolutely so I'll start by saying that fulcher sales and marketing is really a Unorthodox Marketing Agency. I say that because we're really more of a sales agency Working with business business companies to help them Prospect and find new opportunities develop relationships with new business new business and ultimately tack on revenue the best time of revenue right not just Not just helping. People increase sales but our mission is to create meaningful connections with in for our customers. And so it's not just about selling. It's about creating long-term relationships that produce win win situations for both our clients and our clients customers. You're not just like setting them up with. Here's how you do this. You've got people that are boots on the ground. Yeah we do work with your clients. Absolutely Kinda wear that idea. That whole genesis of fulcrum really came from a couple of different problems that I was seeing in the local market One of the big problems that I saw was that all of my students come on a U. L. They were very very bright driven Educated but educated Pete young people and they had a lot of fire in the belly and they wanted to. They want to get into sales. Their challenge was is that not many companies in our local area. Wanted to take a gamble. In hiring a injure level salesperson with no experience so most companies required up front are preferred that you had three years experience in sales for a sales position and so my students would always ask me reese. Where are we going to find this three years of experience if nobody wants to give us a chance and so that was a big problem that I saw and in one that I wanted to to fix in a way The second problem that I saw was before Fulcrum. I was really active as a sales trainer and consultant Works for Stellar Training. Some of their sales people in consulting them on spelling special projects Worked with other companies throughout throughout the local area and started to realize that the large majority of the companies in our in our local market. They didn't need sales training or consulting. They needed someone to own the problem of sales. So that's not to say that. A lot of companies that are local market don't have great sales talent management. They absolutely do for this for this type. It's being they really wanted someone to own traveling and and help them solve it. Not so much trainer people how to sell better or or train or create new consultative ideas. They wanted boots on the ground in a contract contrast person. Yeah they wanted. They wanted a service to be provided Not just the recipe book. They wanted someone to cook the recipe. And that's what made you start fulcrum. That's what made me start fulcrum. And so The what we see at Fokker Ms Bokram. If you don't know what a whole curme is number one. A whole corners of simple machine that allows a lever to create leverage. And so we like to say is where the full from our customers are the lever and together recreate leverage. And how we do that is Proprietary also of betting on the on boarding young injured level sales people Not My my God. Given talent is sales training and sales coaching and selling so I can get that injured level talent performing at a level Before they couldn't perform at and then we work we bolt onto our clients teams as their very own sales people and and we help create engineering customer relationships. How do you do that? I know you can't give away all your secrets but for those of us that are listening that are trying to market things like you know we've met before about My marketing the podcast discover Lafayette. Where DO PEOPLE START? You know? Like Co calls are kind of scary. You know from Australia's can you talk about some of that? I can so really the the the core of where to start And and let me back up. Have you ever read Simon Sentence Book? Start with why I've yes I've read. I've read parts of it. Yes I think because you told me about it really really really good book okay. And what what? Simon is saying years the. Why is the motivator? Why should someone act a certain way? Why why does it should they care? What's the why behind it? That motivates people people will be attracted to the Y. And not so much power the what and so I think I think he's right but I think he's missing a piece. Which is the WHO? Who is the? Who is the target of that? Why if you can identify who. It's really hard to understand their. Why does that make sense like your potential market right? If if that's an income companies have a really hard time identifying who they want to sell to. They want to sell to everybody. They Wanna be everything to everyone and when you do that you become nothing to no one right and so we. We work hand in hand with our clients to really challenge their way of thinking to say okay. Who is your who if we can identify that very specific target. Then why should work with you guys or why I trump why my customers should work with me becomes very obvious And then you can provide the value. That's right and then has product or the service that's it that's it and also it helps you to i. It helps you to really understand the bedrock of your marketing campaign. If I want to go up if I if my value propositions specifically resonates with this type of customer and Is Very specifically define. They have a lot more information to go. Proactively find my customer and have those conversations with him. Is this easier with digital like with all the information. That's out there is just a different day because of what the Internet offers information you can get well. So that's a that's a great point and so that's kind of the Segue to what's the difference between inbound and outbound marketing and you know inbound and outbound marketing are just new ways of saying pushing pull marketing which you know if if you've been around business for a while you've you've definitely heard the terms pushing full marketing Push Marketing would be pushing your message. Onto accuster custer so imagine like a direct mail piece Sending someone a cold email a unsolicited e-mail making making a cold call. That's all pushing your message onto a customer base hoping some decks that's right. That's right and pull pull. Marketing is more like slowly. Four customers through various mediums. To you. Okay so imagine like a networking evening. you go you go to the watering hole in hopes to pull people towards your booth Digital Marketing is the new revolutionary format for highly effective pool marketing. And nowadays we call push marketing outbound marketing and we call pool marketing inbound marketing a so the two strategies really work well together you every company should be doing push pull type marketing effort because the two fuel each other. It's like a union gaming. Yang type relationships symbiotic relationship. Most companies today are doing more of an inbound marketing effort which is effective however what typically happens with an inbound. Marketing effort is your fear. Sort of leading the year leading the market defying. Who works with you because while and that might not be true? It's definitely true in the onset of the inbound marketing campaign. Because you wanna you WANNA sort of appeal to a broad base so that your customer settle self elect in to your company as a League And then and then your sales people are are yourself with would have those conversations with those leads that come in through your website and you can ask them about what sort of needs and problems they have and then it becomes a sales conversation or or A. I should say fit conversation. How do we fit together right? in in in an outbound or push side of the world you would be proactively reaching out the various specific customer base and and having those conversations. I've a question one's a little reactive. One's a little proactive but Both work really well together. Hand in hand. I have a question for you. Though you're on the sales and do you help people with their actual website and logos an all or do you take them. Once they're ready to be looking for clients so as a great question. Most of our customers already had a website. Bill They've they've already got some Product market share. They have an idea of who their customers in what their customers buying or what their customer sees value in so we. We usually pick up at that point but we we have customers. Come to us and say you know we really don't have anything So we built some. We've built some websites and and some of that too because you know sales really a positioning question and what I mean by positioning is how do you position your product or service in the mind of the consumer are the buyer right right? And what what most companies do poorly is. They say. I'm going to get on the shelf that all competitions on and so now you're on a crowded Shell and. Y'All look the same. Everybody looks the same in so what in vain which you realize is all man. I'm very crowded shelf. I need be different until maybe you pack. Are you package yourself with a different color? Packaging more you save everybody else. But we're this he's are. You say this is how we're unique right A service companies are so bad about this because though say you know what makes us different quality of our service while every other service company saying that you know so in in the mind of the buyer doesn't sound that unique what I like to try to do for my my customers including self is to say okay. There's other shelves on this rack. How do I get a whole `nother show where there's very little competition and so stand right and then acted back from that shelf because understand the complexity with that too? Is People like the by there. Used to buying and so Making analogies suddenly all is often very conducive in a sales conversation. Because you can say well. We're like this but this is different. And so the customer can say Oh. Yeah I'm familiar with that. And then there's different sounds interesting. What you really should be doing is understanding who re-positioning your whole message around that. Who and what they're gonNA see valuable and then through the conversation backing into what is similar. What is the same? What is comfortable? Because it's what I like Adele when I could tell people and it's not my original quote I remember the author original author. But it's a lot easier to sell different than it is to sell. Better selling veterans hard selling different. Getting people interested in different is not is that by being yourself and determining I what is it. I'm trying to offer and being intentional about what you're presenting to people. I mean it's absolutely. It's all about him. You know I think I think our neutral friend Jeff Stewart says it best when he says hey look. Every company has a Slot Analysis. They have their internal strengths weaknesses and they have their external opportunities in threats and then every buyer every every buyer has their own swot analysis. Their company has its own strengths and weaknesses and opportunities and threats right. And I think what you would just so eloquently always demonstrates is that where the seller shrink lines up with the buyers weakness becomes the sellers opportunity and so once you identify the WHO. Who Do you want to sell to? Who is your target? Who's your customer? Then you can start identifying. Ask questions and understand their weaknesses. And how their external threats are aligning with those weaknesses that understanding becomes your opportunity to serve and to add value. So reese with today's our economy. You know between the oil and gas market taken huge. I mean they're just decimated right now and the pandemic it seems like sales and marketing or a lot of our weaknesses because people are just so worried about tomorrow today you know and so businesses need to be. I guess ramping up their marketing while they're dealing with customers potential customers that are afraid to spend money to what in today's environment would What words of wisdom? Maybe you can share about small business. People that are don't necessarily have a big budget. You know how do people cope with what we have going on so to really really good question and it's a question that I don't think anybody has the definitive answer to It it yeah. Small businesses medium businesses big businesses are absolutely getting obliterated right now and in some fortunately for Far Economy. Some businesses are actually doing very well in this type of situation. That's a great thing because it's going to help carry our economy forward while while everyone else is trying to pivot in figure how to do this in a different way right I think I think what I'd like to do. Jan is is talk a little bit about you know a colleague of Mine Skip Boudreau and I held a conference of virtual conference a couple of days ago called the cap the Cap the GATT conference say it again. Cap solve the cap the gap. Okay the idea behind that was we wanted to help. People capitalize on the social distance between everything. And so it was. You know capitalizing the gap between everybody and so inlet cap the gap conference. We had two different panels. We brought panelists all over the country together to have conversations around this exact issue. The first panel the first panel session was called finding buyers. Nobody's buying and then the second. Yeah and then. The second panel was about building businesses during a crisis. And what I like to do just kind of read the takeaways that I summarize after the conference and I'm willing to share happy to share this with you. So you can distribute all your viewers and put it in the show notes The first one finding buyers. Nobody's buying there was a six. Takeaways is companies really need to be focusing on understanding their companies. Unique strengths right. The panelist said that in times like these companies have to get really honest with themselves and dial it down. What makes them strong wine makes you unique? What is your bread and butter? What what do you have a competitive advantage in right? Because when the market is good and the economy's good and everybody's fine money's exchanging hands. It's really easy to get distracted from your bread and butter and try some new things right. A company should do that right. That's that's innovation and an exploration but but in a time like this it's time to get the focus back in. What makes you really And that that can be some people absolutely activist painful and I think an example. That would be a restaurant in the young right now. You know people are not going out to eat book. But what makes our local restaurants brilliant. Is there also food so people are still buying that food right? Restaurants have had to focus on okay. It's time just make soon. It's time to do we do in the kitchen and deliver that to people and let people come take out because we can't provide that service of of the restaurant atmosphere all these other things. That's not to say that that doesn't make our local restaurants brilliant but it's just an example of how these market conditions have had to make our restaurants focus on a core competency which of their food another another takeaway was allow that understanding of your company's strengths. You'll your competitiveness and drive your innovation. Allow that understanding of your company's strengths. Fuel your competitiveness and drive your innovation kind of the next takeaway was be it. Empathetic and genuine problem solved Companies out there still have problems that they need to be solved until the veterans is there still opportunity bar sales people and businesses alike to go out and earn money revenue by solving those problems. We just have to figure out new ways to ask new questions. To pull those problems to the forefront so that we can help people solve them so that that goes to the next takeaway made sure you solving the right problem for your customers problem that they see a super valuable as as current as a mandatory. You know it's. It's time to be a musk. Have Producer and not a nice to have producer another takeaway? Is that this. Doing this will help you. Identify identified the untapped potential within your current customer base. Right a always easier to sell to your current customers than it is to get new ones and so companies across various industries right now can be focusing on their current customers in helping them solve me problems and then One of our panelists said make it easy to do business with you. You know Is remove some of those hurdles that you've put in the way over time and make it make it easier to do business where again what examples were given on now. Because I'm sure we all think were easy to deal with but what what kind of discussion was down about. Whenever he said that incurred Lawrence out of Atlanta said that I think one of the things that stuck out in my mind immediately was suspended to your profession. Which is you know. Don't make it so legally complex Especially in service contracts over time our service agreements start to get bigger and bigger and bigger and bigger and before we know it. We've got a forty page service agreement. It gets stuck in legal for thirty days. Nobody knew even knows what it says and nobody even knows what so. I think. That's a good example of Taylor. You built the company on a two page service agreement a trusted people and you went out and you did good work. You got compensated for it. People trusted you. You know maybe dial back to that place. Yeah So that you can make it easier to do business with the company and that's just one example. You can't have a handshake deal anymore. But you can have a plain language simple contract that still sell protections correct. Yeah correct yeah. It's a. It's a really good way to summarize it Our next panel was building businesses during a crisis and restore takeaways from that session. And I'll just rattle them off Number one was to see all challenges opportunities to learn Number two was. Get honest with yourself your company your team and the marketplace number four was identify. What makes your company different in? How that difference is cost saver or an oral live generator. Right peop- The market right now is focused on saving money in producing a return. And so we've got a G. You're our messing around. How redo that for our customers in New Cup and potential customers and another takeaway? Which absolutely love was to lead with all you know and I think a good example of that is no one knows the writing answer. No one knows exactly what to do. no one has a bulletproof plan moving forward so just just air that out. You know. No one's asking you tab all the answers. No one's asking you to be perfect knowledge asking you not to worry not to be stared and not the be Not to be emotional. Is this hard time to be authentic. You know and people will think follow that authenticity We did have we. We had a keynote speaker to his name was Troy Henikoff. He's the managing director of math ventures out in Chicago and some of his take aways Number one was uncertain economic times in businesses in different ways but all businesses must survive adapt and thrive and what means by survive is. Make sure that your team and your customers safe. That's priority adapt is increase your cash account staff as you can write sell off things. You don't need Look at European elegant. Look at what you're spending money on and if you don't if you're wasting money in certain areas stop wasting money. It's time get intentional about that. And then Thrive is to plan and execute plan around under normal and execute on that plan One thing try suggest it was to just give your knowledge away give it away? You know he said that knowledge is is something that you shouldn't hold onto. It should be something that you learn and you give to others because you want. Rising tides lifts all boats He said he also said a customer acquisition advantage. Getting really good at getting new customers How will that that comes down back down to again being intentional about getting a lot of companies? A lot of companies grow organically educator at U. L. I worked with a lot of small business owners and got him involved in my classroom and when they would come speak to the students the students would ask them. You know how did y'all grow into a five million dollar company and a lot of times the the CEO the owner of the president would say. I don't know it just kind of happened. You Know One cup. One customer told another customer that they told another then before we knew it we were working fifteen and before that we will work on the you know and I think in a in an economy like this. It's going to slow down that word of mouth marketing because everybody's holding onto their money. You know what I mean. And so also uncertain times lead to a lot of distrust and a lot of uneasiness. So I think it's time for all companies to sort of getting about their growth strategy and not assume that are Ganic. Growth will continue right but you know the fellow that was saying. I don't know you know like your example. About the five million dollar company you probably did know but wasn't articulating that they had been consistent had provided value and probably to work with. You know all the things you talked about being important over time you are exactly right. There's there's a lot there's a lot of business owners. They're listening to this podcast. You're GONNA be thinking will we've grown organically to the last thirty years in you know but if they really think about it and they're asked articulated they can tell you exactly who their customer looks like when they were their customer. Looks like exactly what they value exactly how to win that business exactly where to find that type of customer they know how to go get it and they have been going at it for long. Time is just. They haven't been proactively intentional. Input in in maybe disseminating that know how to the rest of their team. If that makes sense is that people know were still here ready. Yeah I'm thinking about a conversation. I had with one of my friends todd citron. Who owns hub city Ford and Short said how's business he goes. You know it's surprising given the Times. But they're they're selling trucks. It may not be as it would have been a good spring. But they're they're doing okay and I think it's because they've been there seventy five whatever seventy seven years now and people know them and they the families you know buy Ford trucks and children buy Ford trucks and it's just a long term thing but for all of us we don't have that kind of longevity so it's how to build it and what are you seeing people do they. Maybe in this conference he said to where people really utilizing the the digital media because of its it's more effective targeting. So here's the thing about digital right now and you know digital right now is in a unique place because A lot of the the major digital ad buyers are pulling out of digital. And not. Because it's not because visuals bad into because they just. They're looking at how they adapt and keep their cash account. Andy so they're pulling out of there mark out of their digital marketing like for example. There's not an airline out there that's marketing for two online to sell Yeah there's no point is a waste of money so all that cash leaves the the competitive market of online ad buying would guess what happens to the prices of online at. They go to the floor. So right now is a really good time to get into digital. And because your pay per click. Prices are very low which is going to mean your customer. Acquisition cost really low. Now that assumes that you have a really good website that you can Convert those those clicks into customers. You know I'm making a lot of assumptions there. But right now right now. The the digital ads faces are very affordable Intr is at a very affordable entry level. So if you've got if you've got the resources to Begin Dabbling in digital you. Haven't this is a really good time. All TYPES OF BUSINESSES. Like it depends. I mean some businesses are not conducive to digital digital environment. I can't think of any off the top of my head right now. just park it so much easier with information. I guess you get on how to do all that rate fit. I know there's ways you guys know how to get information about. Who's looking at this? What age group or demographic you know. They're they're absolutely turned the tools You know some of the tools that come to mind Google is a very powerful platform analytics. The analytics is to plug in analytics. Your websites absolutely free. There's there's so. Many great e commerce tools their nowadays like shopping by Which which provides platforms for local mom and POPs up to big companies but specifically for local mom and POPs to gentle on shopping. Fine started doing business through the web. You know so there's A. There's a ton of tools out there you know there's Instagram facebook. All these new ways where people were actively engaged in in their eyeballs or on those forms of media that you can get in front of for very low cost are almost free. Do you like link Dan. I noticed you post a lot of articles. Don't you like you give resources to people linked town lengthen probably my favorite platform. Because it's real serious people that are looking at that are trying to learn like you are. They're trying to grow correct. Find that late in is a place where a lot of A lot of users are very ambitious. Very driven Based cellphone they they self select themselves in and say this is who I am. This is what I do This is the company represent. I like that town platform. I've been on Lincoln for a very long time I'm not a big personally. I'm not a big user of facebook. I don't I don't personally. Is the grandma account to some of those things are kind of personal preference? I try to keep managing. Everything's it probably on the business like you said like if you're selling bridal gowns her flowers. Facebook is great but it doesn't look J two. I mean I'm GonNa admit some faults mine here but Just the other day along down to my facebook for the first time in probably three and a half years. Yeah and I had an inbox. Full people saying what exactly the all do at forum. Am interested in learning. Yeah I had all these people reaching out to me about what we do at Fulcrum Kicking myself in the butt saying like how could I be so silly not to get on? This platform engage with people. Thanks so much you can get really pulled into it and there goes an hour or two you know it does it does and I A big lover of this type of communication. You know her person Either face to face or virtually but but having a conversation Even though I'm I've been doing most of the talking a lot to learn so this is good. Free appreciate that SORTA. Why and there's a long to learn from you. I mean the the platform you've provided to our community getting people to share their stories and their expertise that that's a educational piece that you're playing in our community and so I think a lot of people have a lot to learn from you. Thank you I love this. I love the podcast. Love letting people like you talk where we get to know you but also it raises questions. I want to know more about that. You know I didn't know about the so But you're known in the community. I think you've presented so much. That these innovate south conferences and different professional groups. That there a I think there's a real demand by people that know that you can't just be slapdash anymore about the way you present your business or how you approach potential clients you know. There's a lot to lose if you don't do it effectively and there's something else that you know a lot of people don't know about my. Graham is I've been in this game for a while in what I mean by that. Is You know you mentioned my reputation in the local community and and I'm very very fortunate and blessed to have a lot of relationships with a lot of phenomenal people in this community. But I've been at it for a very long time. I've been I have been for a decade longer than a decade in thirty years old. And so what I would tell. My students is this is a marathon not a sprint and and when they when they would look at me. I'd say I've been running the marathon dies. You know my relationships with people when and A good reputation in all of that is not earned in a couple of months site. It is curated in created over a very long time where you're putting constant efforting and you're meeting. You're you're conversation than meeting people that they might not even initially benefit you in any way. But you're doing it because you care more about earning about people and making with anybody over just being in it for the transaction relationship you know. That's tough sometimes. When I hear people talk about how important networking is quote unquote networking. It's not just showing up at a crowded when we can do that again. You know showing up at a crowded meteorite giving your business card everybody. That's so not to me what's effective. I guess it's a good way to introduce yourself. But it's rolling it is inconsistent and showing that your they're not just trying to bulldoze your way into a situation or just to make sense right. I mean Look Tall. The young people who listen to your podcast. You know I had a part time job at a Petroleum laymen firm. All through college For Brad Broussard on that yeah and I met a taunt of people in in that role you know. I drive them places. I would work on presentations with miss. The brand I would work on special projects with with Mr Brat. I met his family. I met you know the whole borough family the whole Bruce family all all of these great people in the community and I was just running out of a law firm. You know but I you know I've worked really hard to impress upon those people that I was someone that they wanted to get to know. And then I did an internship at At the Greater Chamber that came to our commerce back when Rob Gigiri was the press away met everybody. I let everybody with Rob and met rob himself. Who is a phenomenal person? And you know I worked really hard to impress upon those people that I was someone that they wanted to work with. And that's so much end person. That's well that's what it's really all about. Right is an hour. Try to tell my students that this is a marathon every single opportunity you have is important to put your best foot forward and if you do that for ten years stream you start to build a reputation You know because I'm a big believer in is not who you know. It's who you impress and will you continue to impress is not an when when. I say impressed on on China. And say you gotta be flashy and all. It's leaving your imprint. You know that's right it's leaving. It's an should say it's not who you know who you impact right and so being professional salesperson is about impacting people in the way that they won't need to be impacted and that doesn't always leads the transaction. Now that I'm will always lead to relationship. That always be closing but yet you're really always trying to leave value and as you said in your imprint of who you are correct. Yeah you're always try anti-governmental positive way so you know A lot of mentors but I've learned from them is they're always asking. How can I help? It doesn't always benefit them. Actually rarely benefited them back. That question of pay. How can I help? What do you mean how can add value? What can I do for you? Those kinds of things wolf will build a pipeline of business. Are you for a very long time? Yeah I was a when I was young. Probably your age a little bit younger gas people open doors for me and I never really understood it at the time but I do now looking back. You know because I just I had come. I'd had some issues kind of being bullied like you talked about some family issues and I think people knew some of that but I just really worked and you've got through law school and I think they just wanted to give me a chance because they saw I would show up like like you have for others. You know best stage right now to just it's going to be phenomenal opportunities. You have in the future aftershave back and you know it's a lot of it is I'm very very blessed. God is leading me down a phenomenal path You know have tried my hand at a couple of different ventures in my life than still flat on my face in a lot of who has were. Yeah absolutely and they've all taught me and led me to this point in my life. I feel like I'm making a very substantial impact on our community. I feel like I'm impacting Martine. And all in my community and my team my customers are all impacting me. And so I thank you goes on all of them and to you and to the greater community of Lafayette. I'm glad you're here. Thank you I really appreciate you taking time to to visit today and I want to send people to your website. It's fulcrum sales dot marketings at right. Fu L. C. R. U. M. Sales Dot Marketing and. You can see more about what we've been talking about with their marketing team and what this inbound outbound marketing as And I look forward to hearing you speak to our Small Business Development Center Group. It's it's a small group. You know there's probably about fifteen of US different businesses and we're all trying to grow and learn but the sales part that's where we all feel like. We need more help so well and whole tractor I hopefully. I can impact you guys in some positive way we've been rallies they're so far. Today I've been talking with Monica about it and Is going to be great? I guess it'll be a virtual meeting so yeah it'll be fine. So or Reese. -Tario thank you so much for joining us on discovery. Lafayette and I wanNA thank our listeners. For being a loyal listeners please share word of discover Lafayette with others. You can go to discover Lafayette Dot net to listen to reese terriers interview and all of our interviews. We have about one hundred forty five. Are you can also subscribe which I ask you to do. You can go to I tunes or anywhere. You get your podcast and you can do that on our website. Team in subscribe from the air. Thanks to Raider. And especially Jason Sikora from mixing our tape and for the long term support of Iberia Bank. Lafayette thank you all on behalf. Discover Lafayette at this chance.

Times The market Reese Far Economy Lafayette Lafayette Teaching Sales and marketing Alec Baldwin South Louisiana United States Saint Martin Bill Lafayette Moody College of Bus Lafayette James Lafayette General Health Simon Reese Terio Highland Performing Arts Cente Gary Glenn Ross Iberia Bank Dot Com
Vince Hayward, CEO of L. H. Hayward & Company  Owner of Camellia Beans

Discover Lafayette

36:28 min | 1 year ago

Vince Hayward, CEO of L. H. Hayward & Company Owner of Camellia Beans

"This is John Swift and you're listening to discover Lafayette a podcast dead in the communities it serves for more information visit Lafayette General Dot Com Vince Hayward CEO of L. H. Hayward Company beyond today we'll talk about the beginnings of this family business which began in eighteen fifty when his great great great grandfather settled in New Orleans is our guest today a graduate of you'll Lafayette in Business Administration. Vince is a hands on manager of the company which produces the iconic Camelia bean bank is the largest bank based in Louisiana headquartered in Lafayette with three hundred twenty nine combined locations throughout the south they offer the resources of a National Bank Inc with the personal touch of a community bank visit Iberia Bank Dot Com for more information and lastly I want to express my gratitude for Lafayette General Lafayette and it's a even the people that have that have left and come back and they say they give stories of how they it offers complete fleet of it solutions for businesses of all sizes raiders motto. Is You just want to work we understand if you're wondering if Peter can help your business please visit Raider Solutions Dot com I'd like to thank Iberia Bank for its support founded in eighteen eighty seven Iberian and your podcast is amazing I really enjoy it and much and I actually feel sort of out of place here a little bit there's definitely a thread that goes throughout almost all of the episodes and it's it's it's a love of community you know and it's tied sooners and the rest is history in Vincent may not be right about this but I know I've read at least eighty to one hundred thousand pounds of beans or packaged every day around one thousand nine hundred forty when supermarkets were becoming popular William Gordon Hayward came up with the revolutionary idea to package beings in individual bags for health as a Katy Anna's largest nonprofit community owned regional health system Lafayette General Health is committed to restoring maintaining and improving health when the family relocated from the West indies in one thousand nine hundred ninety three the company was named Camelia after the favorite flower of the wife of L H Hayward junior attorney as a community activist is an economic developer a little bit of a politician as a mom but now is a podcast or it's it was time and they've always knew that they would return to their home of left yet because there's a community and culture like no other and I always say Lafayette's the place when People Louisiana for the first time Lafayette's the place that they in their mind that they're going to have to really experience and authentic authentic be able to do what I do just because of the the the lives that we affect in a positive way well we always a pleasure to work with but as I got to know you better thought Gosh this is your business man and you were I had no idea about your ties both to Camelia and so humble I don't think I really knew at the beginning that your family was the Camelia being family I mean you didn't really toot your Horn and certified expected with this multigenerational family owned company. It was something I wanted definitely was not something that was expected or even experienced to listen to your podcast and I learned a lot about Lafayette in the area I'd people and others and the thing you know they're we're looking at the previous guests that have been on the show and the lineup is very impressive and it's a really enjoyable culture of food and family and and history right well let me turn the tables on you this is like a love fest here we did get to be friends when shipping port and a lot of commerce was in and out of the that area of our country so he ended up there and we think that his experience to from your hometown over honestly I was too scared to go to Lsu so big pushed and down I don't know I've always had the entrepreneur phone in me and yeah it was something that I always admired. Cricket in New Orleans where we supplied restaurants and hotels and other wholesalers with products family business and it's very rare to see those survive especially past past the second third it's really unusual and severe psoriasis talk about on some level is is the importance of that you know and as it came up though as a young man did you see yourself working in the company was that just the New Orleans area do come over here to one of the greatest experiences in my life is the six years I spent apiece together history that we've done and from then on we've always been in the food business on some level you know and we were in the French somehow he ended up there and then made his way to New Orleans which makes sense at the time it was a you know a very vibrant city and appeared in new even as a young child that it was a very special part of who we are as a family and what an opportunity shoes I just feel so grateful edible beans beans like red beans or white beans things like that generally aren't grown and humid areas so but we do a lot of peas in Texas and Florida and really gain a a fondness forum and when he came to this country brought that knowledge and that's our sort of I guess the parallel here is culture family tradition and and that's what we do with our brand I mean that's that's that's what I guess I'm here guest on before with another not as long back as committee beans but I remember Popey be oh we're here with Jason Sikora multigeneration I'm getting my degree and no really I mean my my best friends in the world are all from this area so I love it and then the move from the West indies in eighteen fifty million in New Orleans yeah I mean that's obviously a long time ago we don't know exactly all the corner stores restaurants supermarkets were not yet a thing you know still very you know how you did you grocery shopping and again it was still a company that was very much centered around supplying on a wholesale level bulk level too many of the they are not to screw it up it looks like things are going pretty well so if you wouldn't mind fleshing out the family history I mean announced but one of my great grandfather's was there for a long time our last name is still very prevalent name in Bermuda and so an island in the Caribbean islands in the West indies was where he learned about beans in the in in to to understand them and allow the most exciting business in the world so how did you end up at U. L. Lafayette what was that silence for who knows when you know I mean they trace it back so long ago but we feel like we certainly added served as your attorney you were developing language that's familiar to a very nice subdivision Chateau vermillion and you were very local very community oriented very neighborhood centric so we supplied a lot of supplies to grocery stores but again mainly being them crazy and and I was just I don't know it just had the I love the sound of region Cajun I mean who could pass that up in a lot of people from satiety in the community with beans specifically red kidney beans red red beans and rice has been an iconic dish for the city in the World Elmwood so I'm GonNa let you maybe more maybe more now welcome to discover Leffler Jan it's great to be here I know you as an and other produce and things like that and as the years went on our focus narrowed are sort of we continued to just carve out this thrives I just didn't mean to put you on the spot but I was thinking back then in the eighteen fifties before the civil war I mean he really hit the ground and you know my dream is to make everyone in the country be a fan red beans and rice really yeah and that's what you know sort of preached aww beans and sales all all sort of raw agriculture where the beans back then hiring in that rock rocky right yeah so I don't know we don't know much about that and we made it through it and you know it's race or geography everybody loves some type of being you know or the dish red beans and rice and and it's not it doesn't matter who you are you know you eat it or there's an agricultural region beans grown I mean even Louisiana UC soybeans is formerly really big crop here it is possible to grow beans here is they just don't do as well as some other crops so that's why you see you know sugarcane for instance is being beatable Combo I mean I just love that you can get a bag of beans and it goes forever like it's just if you're broke or if you want to splurge with expensive ingredients you can do it and it's just and it goes a long way during lean times you can just eat well but you know we're looking at several bags of your beans here for people we've always just just you know we're always just been schlepping beans and some some level so let's go to nineteen twenty-three yes when the brand what's funny growing up I grew up in Baton Rouge so I remember my family making rice and gravy not they would make beans to the sort of the decimalization of our society as World War Two came to a close it ties to win consumer product goods to that tradition as a family and a brand and it's definitely were part of the fabric of in the tradition I mean fabric in the history of the city through this dish it wasn't because I think we had more of a gumbo racing gravy background but as an adult when I started cooking I discovered all this and it's just an always something good to have that that's another thing I like to talk about it's a dish were an ingredient that really spans all boundaries of economics that's when the company was formally organized you know and that's our official start date for the entity and families move into the suburbs tation transportation so all of these things became a necessity for us as a company because leaned probably six or eight times and so that process is there's a combination of mechanical and technological processes that the beans in our even anytime where two people source this isn't fast forward to now the beans are grown all over the country wherever possibly be we only source the absolute best that's available it's not that hard for us because coming to the podcasts we've got all these beans in front of us and it was around nineteen forty that's your family I think it was William Gordon Hayward came up with the idea to package when supermarkets are at least markets were becoming more prevalent where consumers could just buy it and I'm sure it lasts a lot longer when you combine really bad it's just a feast for the eyes to look at not only the recipes but how things work out and obscene photos of you and your family sorting the beans that world and that's what's allowed us to travel just outside the confines of the State of Louisiana and and other areas of the country since then tell me and a really take off. Everything was began to be packaged at that point the the advent of the supermarket the the fan off the sorting process. I love your website I think it's community beans people can just type in camilion beans and up it comes with all this different history and visual go through to remove any kind of either foreign material or beans that don't meet the right color or size parameters and doll who is the resident Gardner at blackberry farms which is a famous resort and that's that's that's really what we do as an organization is we make sure that the product it's in the bag is the best that it can that's where the desires for consumers were headed right and so yeah ever since then we've been in package Ryan packaged goods and party they have to serve it alongside our question there should be careful preparing this dish that it's there for you you know problems right right so speaking of harvesting I there's there's a disconnect heard this from many physicians and health practitioners so many of us not only adults but really children are disconnected and save them and we have no longer have access those things are gone forever you can't recreate something that doesn't exist anymore family supporting this holistic eating and healthy eating but you support others efforts because we are losing knowledge as a as a society the that's our job is to make sure that it's in this package is not just safe yes that's a big part of it but also the highest quality so when you spend your time they go through a automated sorting but then you guys you're looking at things giving a visual to make sure that the product is top notch we've been in business for so long you know we've we've our growers have are have been supplying a product for generations you know for forty fifty years and they harvest it in they process it and put it on a truck and send it to us so it's the the John I hope I'm pronouncing it right John Coogan dolls Jeremy to save our seats in stories and it parallels what we've been talking about like hated to the people and rich culture of Lafayette the gateway to South Louisiana how we record in the offices of Raider solutions a technology company. I love being a part of that you know and and so it's you're right it doesn't right you'd make it 'cause it's good and it's good for you I so they know the quality that we accept and what we don't see you deal with other family owned businesses we deal with farmers you know and they farm it from where their food comes from yes whether it's meat from a cow her beans how do you make this or whatever and so I know you not only is your and you mentioned that he said like ninety four percent I don't know how that's possible of our fruits and vegetables of of fruits and vegetables are no longer available very sort of trending idea not only where we're as consumers we're all very much interested in the source of our food okay and John goes take that a step further and says we're actually losing sources of our food his passion his real passion in life is two things number one art and number two seed saving and it's a real it's a it's you know is that when when strains of certain fruits and vegetables are lost if we don't harvest those seeds one eight while because the in order to let's just say like Krill tomato okay will you ever I looked at something online about Jon Dahl I know that your company committee beans sponsored this L. P. B. Documentary and it was called geeking out now or so you know by the time the beans are harvested from the field to the time they make it to your plate they've been around the off we're taking it nationwide I wonder what the toughest market might be I'd like it on the west coast northeast stuff where our food is Christina Melton of L. P. B. in Baton Rouge protus explained to us that she was doing this documentary on John a creole tomato seeds that haven't been saved for the next time you're ready to plant so you know thousands and thousands of variety here at harvest you have to save those seeds so you can then replant while a bet cycles broken creole tomatoes are gone forever there's no way to recruit have to know where food comes from you know. And he's he's a big proponent of making sure that we don't stray too far the artist but he captured the stories of the forming and the stories behind the families and the story behind the land and it's to single ingredient products you know it's the beans in the bag and and and the varieties of those of those products are very important grabbed my attention because it's really at the epicenter of this this primal sort of interest that we a very very close attention to that so the idea of making sure that these particular versions of these beans that you want or there for you we realized is that a lot of these varieties of different plants were simply just stored in people's freezer covered or now and the variety that we put in the bag needs to meet a certain expectation that you have is a consumer so we spend a lot of time with that and we we and you know uncle John's house you know and he had to go find those and that was the that's really the story is about this journey of of of making sure it's eight is now gone forever to me it's a little startling and maybe we discover we should have saved one we didn't and it's too late from where it all started so and I think that's a very important thing to keep in mind when you think about our food and and what we eat and take it for granted closing on John Quicken doll he had he created over eighty journals that he not only drew on his right so his passion is to make sure that everything we have we make sure we don't lose and I think that's really cool you know and it ties in what we do we sell beans or that you know we locate the last remaining seeds of these things so you know they don't just inadvertently get tossed away and lost forever things like blight set in you know the insects get it's like the yields of the crops go down if you're not evolving it's a true testament to how things were so that we can walk today we can draw on that knowledge that he captured yeah what do you the beans people were buying so you know sixty years ago so here's the thing about it at least in this world is that you need to evolve released I think it's called deeply rooted and it shows his art for one but it showed rarely talks about his experiences in this world of seed saving you want if you WanNa see something interesting do a little research on seed saving and what that's all about and it's a it's a great grassroots no pun intended movement in with the climate or environment or soil conditions so that's a necessary component of farming is to is to evolve your strain obviously I don't know enough about it talking but that was the that was the genesis for really supporting and actually his there's just been a book in in the process of the evolution of of of how the development of the different strains and things like that in our country where people are really getting interested in this and making sure that we preserve everything we can with our food and not take it for granted crucially important to the lining of your stomach and your intestines and that fiber really feeds that the the process that goes on there view is part of what we do so it was a natural interest there so you think do you know if the beans and these bags are they the same are they constituted the same I guess the be soft but not too soft so these are all things that that are part of it so if we walked in your kitchen at your house would you more likely announced the studies now are really talking about how three cups of Beans Day is really that's his passion he does it with peas and beans mostly but he also does it with tomatoes and things but he's just a it was just really information so people can have more beans in their life and hopefully you know some of those will be brand but if not they're still eating beans right you don't WanNa lose that that's the whole point of what we talked about but yeah so for instance the red kidney beans that we sell today for red beans and rice the strain that being over time I'm going to really quickly get outside of what I know that I'm talking about here but if you don't hurdles or obstacles for people consuming more beans in their diet is a lack of awareness on how to prepare them so I set out about five years ago odd have a pot of beans cooking are you a cook I am I am Cook I eat a lot of beings nearly as many as I should you know the one hundred thousand bags a day or whatever isn't evolving process and we WANNA make sure that it continually meets today's consumer we want them to cook quick as they can we want them to be as cream as they can we want the and so very appropriate with today's Trans we're trying you know so many of trying not to eat package foods which is it can be hard can be life changing with your health and so I'm definitely trying to eat more and more songs in my diet but the the the health doc to really begin to build a volume of of information that allows people to to to to have recipes and he is on how to prepare beans include more beans in their diet so that's been an ongoing investment that we've made is to really build this library I mean on some level let me you know but you always need to know what version you're on and you know what where you came from and number two they soak up spice really well so however you spice them they're gonna they take it on and they're they're very very loyd but when you look at us it's like no sodium ton of fiber Scott Potassium and all this but it's got everything that you want to have like I said you can get a bad Lee is is the gut health and it's a very popular topic everybody's talking about gut health and and that the fiber that's contained in the beans is just and I think it's a it's a it's a really good food for more people have it's I like to say of all the things you're not supposed to have on it are just just like crazy when when you start looking at the health properties of beans and the biggest one I've been reading about lately wants to do I want there's just so many things that's fine it's very nice you to say that what we realized is that the biggest one of the biggest all these great things and were none of the negatives so you have a favorite besides the red beans and rice like out of all the things you've seen all being dishes do you have a favorite that the second with this really cool lean sausage made from row says it's light crawfish and poor it's a lean sausage and I I like to see Britain well I love I that's a really good question I really love well I love lintels yeah it's one they cook fast the they're loaded with the antioxidants to and it's a very they're very healthy variety deep so these recipes on the back these some of these I read our family rest beans or none of them and everything you're supposed to have beans or many of those were perfect plant based protein were non GMO high fiber cook things and put them in the freezer. Because I know I can just pull it out and I never used to be like that but I love looking at my freezer and having you know those clear containers concede things where do I stare into the recipe on the bag and say it's kind of easy can't go wrong here unless you

Lafayette Vince Hayward New Orleans Louisiana Lafayette General Lafayette Camelia Camelia bean bank Lafayette General Health Iberia Bank Dot Com L. H. Hayward Company John Swift William Gordon Hayward Cricket National Bank Inc Lafayette Business Administration CEO psoriasis Lsu L H Hayward
Steven Picou, Executive Director of Lafayette Regional Airport, Talks About New Terminal Progress, COVID-19 Impact on Travel

Discover Lafayette

34:32 min | 1 year ago

Steven Picou, Executive Director of Lafayette Regional Airport, Talks About New Terminal Progress, COVID-19 Impact on Travel

"This is John Swift and you're listening to discover Lafayette a podcast dedicated to the people and rich culture of Lafayette the gateway to South Louisiana. We tape in the offices of Raider a hands on. It service provider that integrates all of your needs for advanced technical support. Effective communication options and cybersecurity raiders motto. Is You just want it to work? We understand please. Visit Raiders Solutions Dot Com for more information. I'd like to thank Iberia. Bank our premier sponsor. They support our community in so many ways and their dynamic team is committed to serving the banking needs of clients in this region and throughout the southeastern United States. Iberia Bank offers the resources of a national bank with the personal touch of a community bank. Please visit Iberia Bank Dot Com for more information the generosity of Lafayette General Health. Also makes this podcast possible and we thank them for. Being a premier sponsor as Acadian is largest nonprofit regional health system. Lafayette General Health is committed to restoring maintaining and improving health in the communities. It serves for more information visit. Lafayette General Dot Com Stephen Paddock. Who Executive Director of the Lafayette Regional Airport? Is Our guest today. A native of cutoff in the foods perish. Pika graduated from Louisiana Tech University with a bachelor's degree in professional aviation and obtained his commercial multi-engine instrument pilot's license attack the same year Steven has worked at other airports around the country. In New Orleans Albuquerque Amarillo. His experience includes remodeling and building. New Terminals were here to discuss the ongoing progress of Lafayette's new terminal as well as the impact. The cove nineteen virus is having on air travel numbers at our airport Steven pinker. Welcome to discover Lafayette. Thank you thank you Sandra. I've been so curious about the ongoing progress of the construction at the airport. And I know that when you were hired a few years ago that was one of the things that brought you to Lafayette. We were planning the new construction. So you want to give little bit more background first before we start about Your career and some of the things you've done before you ended up in Lafayette sure. As you indicated. I started off at New Orleans International Airport operations and from there. I moved around at New Orleans into the noise office. Which many people understand that? There's a noise office in airport because people were impacted by aircraft noise. And so that included. What's called the residential sound insulation program? Well we actually went into the the neighborhood Into the homes of private individuals homes privately owned homes and did sound engineer quality. So that mean putting heavier duty windows. Removing air conditioning window units out and putting central air so learned how to work with You know you're in their home You're you're in a construction site in their home and they're not displaced there in there with you so you learn how to work around Just those individuals and respecting their property from there went on to Albuquerque International. Random noise program. They're actually establish their noise program We installed Several monitors noise monitors around the city of Albuquerque From that point I went into the environmental side ran all environmental Systems for our KIRKE which meant noise. Air Quality Stormwater various things then was transferred into the planning and development side of the airport and started building. Things I remember my first project that it was a restroom on the lower level. Tau Kirk International Import. And so had that project was great success then went into build a fuel form Went from about one hundred thousand gallons of fuel on airport property to one point one million gallons of fuel on airport property so we were able to the successful. I did a an expansion because they're not time that was nine eleven So back in the day where everybody was having long lines and so we did a terminal expansion project their from their move to Morello International as the deputy director the number two position at the airport and built a terminal there as well It was an additional terminal. It was addition to an existing terminal so That has some uniqueness to it as well because you building onto an old building has old technology old building methods and so making those two compatible has some challenges in it and now I'm in Lafayette building a brand new terminal. Which is very nice. You don't have any connectivity to the old terminal and so it's Building out of the ground field and not having to make those compatibility issues. That's been very nice. Let's remind people to The construction is ongoing and this is approximately I guess. Is it a two year construction project for the IT started in two thousand eighteen and were slated to be finished in September? Twenty twenty one a little over two years In the project is on time and on budget. That's great. Now let's remind people also how this has been funded. This was a really unique way of funding new infrastructure project for our communities. Have you can bring us back to that point time. Sure I in early. Two Thousand Fifteen. The tax payers of Lafayette Parish Voted to have a one cent sales tax placed on them. Temporary tax for eight months That eight months sales tax Created about thirty three and a half million dollars Which was dedicated? Strictly to the Terminal Project. Which is unique as you indicated earlier We are a poster child for the FAA of how to do things really nice when we go meet with the FAA they use utilize Lafayette as an opportunity for other airports to raise money in their Locales to have projects and have earmarked projects and money's dedicated out of a tax base and and building and able to come to the FA with Money in their pockets and not empty pockets and it goes a long way when you walk into a building into any type of meeting with various officials. And you say I'm here. I need your assistance. And then like well. What can you bring to the table? And you say I have thirty three and a half million dollars coming to the table and that really catches them by surprise and build your case when you're asking for their assistance so the airport project. The terminal project is being funded by Thirteen sources. I don't think I can name all thirteen sources for you right now. But one is the way the St L. A. Dot de Aviation Dot D. S. PNC facility. Planning Control of Louisiana Let's see The FDA grants There are a couple of browns. There's one Brownfield grant which is an environmental grant that we were able to secure and in monies from the tax base and then monies from our own savings that been done over the years at Lafayette. That's incredible and Lafayette is very conservative. And the way the tax was enacted it would just was collected for what eight months and did great and then everybody followed their promises and shut down the temporary one cent sales tax so it came and went and raised a like. You said over thirty something million dollars so but builds credibility to the to the airport and for the Lafayette Airport Commission as well to started attacks as we said we were GONNA do and we ended the tax. And now you have a building that's going which a publican monitored through our website. Right right. Well you know. I was really curious before we schedule. The podcast I did a little research and it looks like last year. The new terminal is really needed. Last year there were more than five hundred thirty thousand people flying in and out of Lafayette which was a record year. If I understand it right and It just seems like maybe a month or two ago must of your complaints revealing about You know the security check in people were concerned about the time it took because there's a lot of people flying in and out and that's changed quickly and we'll get to that with the code one thousand nine virus and the impact. It's had on the airport but would you talk about what's been going on at the airport. I mean that's that's a lot of people flying in all region right and in two thousand nine hundred indicated five hundred and thirty thousand plus passengers go to the Lafayette Regional Airport and with that is there delays and times. We don't control the TSA but we worked with our TSA partners and we Were able to secure. Some funding are internal funding and we have revamped the current terminal for two lanes for to have to TSA checkpoints are TSA lanes in the checkpoints. So that people can process through faster that was all scheduled to go online until again as you mentioned the Cova nineteen came on and so that has ceased all travel for TSA employees. So we're not able to do that until right. travels reinstated but we spent some money Out of your ports funds to make the passenger have a better experience while they were coming through Lafayette because we were receiving several complaints. And if we had an Achilles heel that was our Kelly's hills that the checkpoint was over powered basically in the morning because there were over three hundred passengers going through that checkpoint and the system just couldn't handle unfortunately cove in nineteen is coming around. Haven't been able to test that system to see if we've really made a great impact on that hopefully in the summer we'll see that the lines are much Less than they were previously and our passengers will. I'm sure provide us feedback on what they think of that. New Line smoother sailing flying. I guess we could say Can you talk about how the airport operates I was thinking was we talked about the Tsa check-in Y'all probably get? I'm talking about the Lafayette Regional Airport. You're probably taking the heat for a lot of things that aren't really your direct that you don't have direct control over. I think people probably blame the airport because we don't understand I know I never have. Who's in charge of what? What are the airlines in charge of? What IS TSA in charge of? What can you do as director if you could talk about that because I know that's something that most of us would we just don't know how it works just show up and wanted to be a good experience? Sure and and thing that I've always indicate is a personally. I've never been to Las Vegas Nevada but I've been through that airport and so a lot of people ask. What have you been in Las Vegas? No but I've been through the airport and so we are the gateway to the community and a lot of people wanna have positive experience since nine. Eleven flying isn't as fun as it used to be Because you do have the TSA and you have to go through security line and you have to take you know. Take all your things out your personal belongings and have someone go through your bags and so it's different different mindset than it used to be but some of the responsibilities. Tsa Is responsible for the safe and secure Screening of passengers getting on air carry are a united American Delta Airlines flight. The airline is responsible for selling you a seat. Not The airport We we don't have anything to do with. We don't have anything to do with that. Are With the Tsa We provide a safe efficient area for both the TSA the FAA and the Airlines to operate that that is our that is our our direction by FA protocols that we provide safe operation for aircraft. Safe area for aircraft operations So the way I I said this many times and other conversation is I'm kind of I'm not elected by any means but I am the mayor of the airport and then I have a commission that I work with who would be equal to the council V The Parish Council of the City Council. And that's kind of how we work so you know. The mayor's not responsible for you know everything at Your House. But he's responsible being sure that the roads are good in front of your house if you live in the city and if you live in the parish as the parish administrator as well so that's kind of the correlation that's a it's a kind of a weak correlation but it is a correlation is that I'm the mayor of the city. We have our own police. We we utilize the sheriff's department. Lafayette Parish Sheriff's Department So we have our own police department that we we work with their on the contract. We have our own fire department. We have Tenants throughout the facility that sit on this On the large acreage we have airline tenants. We have fixed based operator tenants. We have private hangars. We have you know. Various large companies that operate off of the airport is well under based here in Lafayette. So that's kind of what? The airports responsibility is to provide a safe and efficient environment for aircraft operations right. I just wanted to let you clarify that. Because it's a must it's like any business we just don't know what goes on behind the scenes and you've got a lot of people you know that I'm sure come to you. That WanNa make this a good experience. maintaining their the runways building this new terminal. There's so much going on without without looking into all the other things that can happen. You know that are beyond your control. Said GonNa let you explain that so Stephen. I'd like to pause if you don't mind for one second. We have a new addition to our podcast. Discover Lafayette's passed in this insight into our history is sponsored by rally marketing. There are full service digital marketing agency that can assist people with marketing automation content development search engine optimization and strategy. They can show you how to use social media to turn into a moneymaker for your business. Our friends at rally marketing are there to help you navigate the maze of all the latest ways to market online effectively. For more information. Please visit Raleigh Marketing Dot Com. And now the moment. Lafayette Municipal Airport was dedicated on November. Twenty Ninth Nine Thousand. Nine hundred. Thirty in eastern airlines began the first commercial air service from the airport in. Nineteen forty eight. It size has increased over the years from eight hundred forty eight point five acres in nineteen fifty three to approximately one thousand one hundred sixteen acres at present from its humble. Beginning as a wooden hangar. Lafayette Regional Airport has grown into a state of the art facility providing top notch service to area travelers and businesses. And of course as we've been talking about they're expected to complete construction of the new one hundred Twenty Thousand Square foot terminal in twenty late. Twenty twenty one and Stephen Back Our podcast discussion. You're working with locally with The Lemoyne companies that right your contractor direct and who is the partner with Lemoyne for the Airport Terminal Manhattan Okay Venture Joint Venture Okay. I know that little Wayne has been involved in so many large projects including Tiger Stadium and just Lafayette general there's so many projects they've done so I know it's good to work with local contractors. Yeah so let's talk about. How do you make money? And let's just go ahead and say no right now. You've got flights in and out of the airport but I'm sure your numbers have changed drastically some curious you know on a good day. How does an airport make money? And then we can talk about what's going on right now so on a good day Most of our money's come from the airline activities and in from our general aviation partners and so are generally vision is the smaller aircraft. Not The air carriers not the ones carrying passengers for To get from here to Atlanta to Dallas or Houston so a lot of our money comes from those two sources however it is it's incumbent upon the director of an airport too Diversify our revenue income. And so we lies our concessionaire They individual that sells Various food drink and thundery gifts news news and gift items in the in the terminal as well as our parking and in our various large tenants that we have that are located on the airfield. So we look for opportunities for additional revenue or to diversify revenue due to the fact that the airline industry is kind of a hit and miss sometimes then particularly right now and so we need to have the ability to diversify that revenue in the event. Say AN AIRLINE SAYS. It goes out of business to collect bankruptcy or something like that that we have ability. It'll hurt won't hurt as much because we're not relying has heavily on an airline To pay those bills one in the new items that we're going to have Starting may first is what we call a quick turnaround and acute ta and airport will own the Q. Ta and it is where the grin car companies will park their vehicles service. Their vehicles light service. Fuel THEM CLEAN THEM. And then bring him back to the terminal for passengers to pick up and utilized so have clean cars The airport will not we will charge rent to the rental car companies and we also seldom fuel and we get we get a fuel flowing fee off of that. And that's another way that we get fuel Revenues you'll float fees at the airport and said the airlines. Do THEY PAY. They pay you per passenger. Are you reimbursed per passenger or is it just landing fees for the whole air pace at work they pay landing fees as well Then they also pay A PFC A passenger facilities charge. And that's not necessarily an airline charge. That is they charge that. The airport utilizes to support some of our projects so the terminal project has the PFC that we're currently paying our passengers paying it. Lafayette goes towards the new terminal project. Another funding source for the airport. And then as you said you have other things I know. There's a real estate on the site that you make money from it really is it really is like a small city your tenants. I have lease agreements and contracts with them. I have people that are you know I. It's just it is a small city and I mean I have fire department and and it's contract and then I have contract law enforcement as well So I have have a police department so we are responding to respond. To calls for service alarms. This morning I watched out my window officer. Deputy actually went to a far call service for a duress alarm. Luckily it was nothing but You know we do respond to various forms that are outside of flying right. Well looked on your website this morning and I encourage people to go. Can you tell me that website? I probably need to get on the Internet and www T- airport dot com and that's where people can see the the flight status says and they can look at the progress terminal. There's so many things to look at and I was looking at the flights coming in and out and you still have flights to Dallas and Houston and it looks like some are going on and later ones in the day were cancelled but what is going on like today like what's a typical day since we've had the stay at home order what's happened at the airport. Flying has really decreased Our load factors are way are much lower than where they should be Our our processing passengers say are and that's not because I'm not the TSA but collectively the body that the airport. We are processing less and less passengers. Each and every day It's really impacted the airports ability AARP. It's really impacted. The airport in the way of you know less less flights must people parking less people buying anything in the terminal building But we're taking our precautions We are considered essential. Staff reported the Transportation Industry We are continuing to work our our our. Our offices offices are closed to the public at this time. However you need to come and visit us we will By appointment and you can make an appointment you can get a hold of me via our web page But yes it's really. It's really been different. This is totally different than from any experience. I've had and I was in the industry for nine eleven. I was initially for Y2k. And this really has taken Kind of the wind out of the sales for airports across the country. Line for airlines But what we're doing on our side is. The building is being cleaned on a routine basis We're wiping down high touch places like elevators Button handrails using all the latest anti viral anti bacterial anti microbial type cleaning products and so While we have eighty slowdown. We're actually doing some heavier cleaning in certain areas that we were not. We don't know not necessarily we do not necessarily get into Due to the fact of traffic but so we're taking nop tuning. When as I say many times is that life's giving us lemons and so we're making lemonade. So people still just come to the airport like they always would just check in. It's the same process. Yep No change in that process I we recommend everyone contact their airlines. See or go to our website because that information is being fed to us by the airline We just recommend them contact airlines ensure that the flight is still on And scheduled any estimate of how many people are on a flight like DC. That information in your position on on a flight like typical flight today. Let's say all depends on the size of the aircraft but I can tell you on Sunday. That just passed We process twenty two passengers which is very very low the whole day and then Tuesday a week ago from today we processed eight passengers normally we process over three hundred passengers in the morning from the hours of five thirty to about six. Seven o'clock right so we normally get about five hundred on five hundred to six hundred fifty passengers a day and now we're down in eighty eight on a good day but I'm optimistic that it will come back. Yeah Yeah I know you've got to have so much per passenger. I'm sure to to make your budget projections and You had told me about that. You operate on a balanced budget. And you've got to to make things work right we do. We operate on a a balanced budget. the airport is financially in good shape at this point We don't want to many more days are too many more months of this of kindrence on our our budget. But we're okay. We're doing well. And every year we do start off with a balanced budget. We have to by law. We have to provide balanced budget. Which what is in the cares. Act that Congress passed Stephen for the airline industry. Do you know about any assistance at the federal government might be giving airports such as Lafayette region or the the act was passed by Congress and it is for Corona Virus Are Nineteen and for the impacts that covert nineteen. I've had Congress and the president signed into law that there was ten billion dollars. Earmarked for airports The amount of money that you're going to airports going to receive this based on placements and your debt ratio And playmates number passenger so fewer larger airport like New Orleans. You're going to get more money than say. Lafayette at this point right now. It looks like the airport in Lafayette over receiving anywhere from two point. Five three million dollars from the cares act that money will have to go through the normal protocols of Fa and it can be used a little not as stringent as the normal protocols. But still to some the checks and balances but it could be used to for payroll our debt services and certain projects. So that goes just for operating I mean it can be used To take the place of what you would have been making just like. We're doing paycheck Paycheck protection okay. Yeah so have you had any discussions with some of your peers around the country. I mean y'all is their network where people are talking about. What's going on or shore? Yes and and just different different. Airports are approaching this quite differently than other airports There are airports out there. That have granted Their tenants Millions of dollars of concessions in Louisiana. We can just do that. Do the fact that the state constitution says our state losses that we can't give things away so we have to. We have to. We have to be careful. We're working with our legal team to ensure that we if there are any concessions made that the confessions are legal. And we'll stand up in court But yes there are. Airports that are giving awake giving concessions in the in the states. They're not in Louisiana So we trying as Louisiana Association. We're trying to work together. The we all are home. One voice and saying the same thing to the various individuals that are coming to us and asking us for any type of concession are Bateman right right. It's so interesting I I don't even know if I've asked you the questions I should have been asking. I mean what? What are most people asking you these kind of questions or asking these types of questions they wanted to know a lot of people? WanNa know win It's GONNA come back. Don't have an answer for that. I wish I did Luckily always answer exactly a lot of calls. The airport is is my flight still flying and again we go back to those responsibilities. It's the air the airlines responsibilities. They get the flight flights From point eight point being not the airports but the information is provided on our website comes directly from the airline so if they change anything in our rep website will reflect that as well but we still always advise individuals to call their airline to get the latest and Information on their flight or if they have any questions right like I'm looking at your site right now. L. F. T. AIRPORT DOT COM LAFAYETTE AIRPORT DOT COM departures in. Everything's right there easy to look out but I know people. Are there nervous. My family were waiting. We WanNa make plans for the summer to take vacation. And I'm sure we're in line with everybody else just wanting to get back to normalcy. You know it's just there's no easy answer for what's going to happen bright and there's no easy answer at this point hopefully that as we've seen and We have flattened curves in that. We will start going back to normal routine that we were you. Sue Pre cove in nineteen. I'm looking forward to seeing the new airport terminal with new. How many gates you have. Is it going to go from three to five seven six band if we need to go to seven and the parking if you can describe that too? I probably should have been what will happen. Is We'll increase our parking. How ninety parking spaces when we're fully complete when the project is complete The back to the gates. The gate that is closest to the Kern terminal will not be opened up right away due the fact that we have to get the old terminal out of the way so we have to get into the new terminal then demolished the old terminal and then that that gate will be available also if we were doing expansion it would be in the direction of the old terminal. So that terminal is going to be has to be moved and in their parking For for the commission and an employee parking. It'll be in general location of the current terminal so there's a lot of -tunities so Louis increase number of parking spaces Bob by about ninety and then we'll be removing the economy lot and it'll be long term short term and again. The building is being built with expansion in mind. If demand shows that we need to build a parking garage than the building will be able to accept a parking garage and the surface lot will be built with Locations that are available to accept the parking garage so we can build on top of the surface. Lot right right. It's GONNA BE EXCITING SO EXCITING. It really is now now. We're lucky to have you here. Remember when we met when I was working with Upper Lafayette ad? And you've done so much for our community Steve and WanNa thank you for your dedication to your job and into what you do and just a little side note. I mentioned at the beginning Europe pilot. Are you still an active pilot? Do you fly often? Not Not as much as I would like fly Do a lot of hangar talking and talk about things that I wish I was doing No I'm not flying at this time. I really would like to get back into the flying today on. You have beautiful weather like it is outside right now. It's great to be applying and and all but no not. I'm not currently Active Flyer but I like to feel like airplanes and talking about him so like walking around him and there's nothing like the smell of jet fuel. Well I hope you're able to get back up in the air soon as all of us that we can get back to a normal life and I. I WanNa thank you Steven Khoo. Lafayette Regional Airport Executive Director For overseeing the expansion of our airport for guiding our community you know through this crucial time and maybe we can get you back on when things back to normal and you can update us on. What's going on? I think people want to be informed. how this is affecting our community so. I want to thank you for taking time today and for being patient. We're taping us by phone. I'm taping in my home study. And you've you've worked with me through some technical things. Thank you for being patient. You're welcome thank you for having me in any time It is a great project and I think the community will be very happy with the end product. I think so too. Well thank you for joining us and I also like to thank before we close out A few people that help make this. Podcast possible Jason Sikora of Raider. He will be mixing this podcast tape and I'd like to also thank Raider Solutions Iberia Bank and Lafayette General Health for their support. Their generous contributions enable our podcast. It'd be produced and distributed and we're grateful we're also grateful for our premier partnership with rallying marketing. Please subscribe to discover Lafayette that going to the PODCAST APP on the phone. You can also find all of our podcasts at discover Lafayette Dot net. Thank you for listening and stay. Said this is Jason.

Lafayette Lafayette Municipal Airport TSA Terminal Project Lafayette General Health Lafayette Airport Commission New Orleans International Airp Stephen Paddock Twenty twenty Lafayette Parish Sheriff's Dep Iberia Bank Dot Com New Orleans FAA Upper Lafayette Louisiana Executive Director Lafayette United States New Orleans Albuquerque Amaril
Dr. Holly Boffy  BESE Board District 7 Member, Representing Southwest Louisiana

Discover Lafayette

50:12 min | 2 years ago

Dr. Holly Boffy BESE Board District 7 Member, Representing Southwest Louisiana

"This is John Swift and you're listening to discover Lafayette a podcast dedicated to the people and rich culture of Lafayette the gateway to South Louisiana we record in the offices of Raider solutions in the light center in Lafayette Raiders team. Lets you focus on your business while they take care of technology. If you're wondering if writer can help your business with any and all technology needs please visit Raider Solutions Dot Com. I'd like to thank Iberia Bank for its supported. This podcast podcast founded in eighteen eighty seven Iberia Bank is the largest bank based in Louisiana and is headquartered right here in Lafayette with three hundred twenty nine combined locations throughout the south they offer the resources of National Bank with the personal touch community bank visit Iberia Bank Dot Com for more information. We're also grateful for the support of Lafayette General Health as Katyushas largest nonprofit community owned regional health system Lafayette General is committed to restoring maintaining improving health in the communities. It serves for more information visit Lafayette General Dot Com Dr Holly Bovi is our guest today holly serves as vice president and district district seven member of the Louisiana Board of elementary and secondary education representing district seven here in South West Louisiana Holly founded ED talents which provides education consulting she previously spent ten in years teaching middle school and was named the Louisiana state teacher of the year in two thousand ten in Holly Doctor Bo fee. I should say Holly Commie Holly. Thank you is going to be a lot easier. I'm so excited to have you on the show because education vacation is a cause near and dear to my heart and I love Louisiana as you do yes so would you share your background. I about how you ended up being an elected bessie board member in what led you to want to serve our state sure sure well I taught eighth grade social studies here in Lafayette at Paul Bro and through that process learned about what Bessie even was. I think that most people don't even necessarily know what Bessie is but right. It's the board of elementary and secondary education. It was created with the Nineteen Seventy-four Constitution and we've only had three members on BAC- from our area because the other individuals who served before me served for such long periods of time so I think that's one reason why it's a little known office or position here so I taught eighth grade social studies and would teach students about Louisiana and that included our history our government economics yeah and so in our culture and so I would tell my students one day. You're going to be able to vote for me for Bessie and I don't know what it is not like a thought about it. It's not like I thought about it but I ended up <music> being in a position to run for betsy. I think it's a lot about what we speak into our lives and so when I was the state teacher of the year I was able to interact with a lot of people who felt like I did that that our system should do more to serve all kids and so as a beginning teacher. I realized pretty quickly that I wasn't being set up for success in my students weren't being set up for success. That was a very difficult aspect of my career to encounter because you want everyone to be successful. How did you come to that conclusion? Though like what what. What are you talking about looking into the eyes of my my students I mean I so I started in Baton Rouge at an inner city? I had a kids from an inner city population. Many who had parents who were incarcerated <hes> a many who had parents who didn't have successful getting Gregory secondary education experiences right they hadn't graduated and so I knew that our our system needed to do more if our children were going to be successful so I think parents send us the best version of their kids that they have with the greatest intentions and I think it's up to us as the system to deliver whatever services are necessary to help students to be successful and it's just the realization I got there and thought there's only so so much as an individual teacher that I can bring to the table and that my students were bringing their best every day but we needed more in order for them to successful and so looking at them and understanding what their future was going to hold was very very disheartening and so I think it is upon us to give children as many opportunities as possible to be successful early on. I hear people talk about well. It's the parenting right. It's not the education nation that children have but it's the parenting and my pushback on that is we have the next generation of parents in our schools and if we can provide them opportunities that will result in a successful life now they have to make it happen right but if we can provide opportunities that lead them to success in their life than they are going to be able to provide more for their children and so I think as educators we should be doing everything we possibly king into close gaps and so I I was chosen as teacher of the year and started to encounter people who felt this way and people who have a vision for Louisiana not being in the low forties the bottom anymore and now I don't. I don't want to be forty-ninth forever and I feel like I've been given certain opportunities in my life that I can contribute to US climbing the ladder and that's that's why Iran right now. You got three degrees from L._S._U.. You write your background has always been education. Yes I went the traditional route to be a teacher. I actually had a semester here at U.. L. But my boyfriend at the time who's he was U._S.. Al My boyfriend at the time WHO's my husband now started started at l._S._U.. And so I followed him there and there was a program that I was able to get my master's in my fifth year. Then I think was a difference maker in my career so I was already thinking about education differently when I started my first year as a teacher her and then was able to go and get another degree while I was there. One of the best perks about being the state teacher of the year was that I was able to get my doctorate on scholarship. Oh my gosh yes so that's something that I oh I've finished in two thousand fifteen elite. Gift is an amazing gift it was it was an amazing perk and actually I'm glad that I didn't know because I probably would've tried to heart right. I would have messed it up right in the process so that was an incredible blessing and something that I think is just given me more opportunities to study and think about you know what is it that we can do so that we do better by our teachers and leaders and better by our children well since you've talked about that. Would you explain what Bessie does yes. What what do you guys do? There's eleven of you. Yes yeah there are eleven of US eight of us are elected from regions across the state. It's the old congressional district so when we had eight members in Congress though it would have been there <hes> the congressional districts and so three are appointed by the governor and so the the outcome of the governors election is really so the makeup of our board so the eleven of us are responsible for setting statewide policy. We are the ones who determine the funding formula. It's called the Minimum Foundation program the M._V._p.. We establish the funding formula. Send it to the legislature and the legislature can vote it up or down. Many people know that this year we were successful in increasing teacher pay. I think not enough. I I still don't think our teachers are going to be compensated did for the work that they do but but we are increasing teacher pay this year which is something. That's exciting in addition to the M._f._G.. We established the formula for the school letter grades and so each fall you'll see the school letter grades Aids like ranking skull the great it gets degrade schools get yes and as a matter of fact I really WANNA encourage people to go to Louisiana School Dot Com and learn more about their school. We've done a lot in recent years to be more transparent in what's going on in schools. I'm very excited about the fact that we've added growth to be a factor in the school letter grade prior to that it was student achievement achievement so basically all the letter grade told you was how kids were doing on any given day bad time what it tells you now is the direction of the school so what schools are very fascinating eating and when you dig in the data you can find this information our schools with a pretty low academics are achievement status so an overall low letter grade but if they have in a in growth what it tells us is that the educators educators there are implementing whatever strategies they've chosen for their students and they're implementing it with fidelity and are moving they children in the right direction in so I encourage people to go to Louisiana schools dot com and understand and more about your schools. There's data not just on the school performance but also the makeup the student makeup the teacher makeup and really helps you understand what is going on in our schools. How many schools are there in Louisiana? We have have worked to rank all thirteen hundred schools in Louisiana and so it's not the purpose isn't as much for ranking as it is for informational purposes. I'm using that word wrong but I'm thinking aid right. It's a alive it's a lot of information which is why the information typically isn't released until October November because it's based on the previous springs tests and so there's and we go through a process to make sure that we have good data and those kinds of things so it comes out each fall and you're able to really get a good sense of how school is doing so I guess <hes> I don't even know if you can answer this but if the school is located in a under-resourced resource area where a lot of kids you know qualify for free lunches <hes> economically disadvantaged yes <hes> does any that could factored energy. Look just at the the grades as you're saying that the kids achievement and the growth pattern modern like are there other factors that go into that so the factors in the school performance score are going to be the achievement and the growth but why you can find by looking at this data is understanding where schools where you might have a <unk> higher rates of students who are economically disadvantaged. What we're what's really exciting for us is that then you can find the schools where there's high poverty but also high performing and when we get those examples roles I've those are the examples that are really important for us to point to to say one it's possible and because I think Jan the saddest part the satis mindset that I've experienced is that not everyone believes all children can learn and that is the most frustrating and satis mindset? I think anyone can have because we know all children can learn right. I know when I I heard that hauling. We've we've volunteered a lot together. I thought people. People were I couldn't believe they were serious that they would think that unfortunately that's the case and is <hes> I look forward to the day when it when everybody realizes that all children can learn and that it's about meeting kids where they are in supporting them and giving them what they need to be successful so when we have this data than we can help highlight and then also is informative to educators to be able to say okay so you if if a school school is very similar with demographics but one is progressing a lot faster than the other than educators can have conversations about what's working. What would you do? How did you make a difference and I think especially for some of the schools walls who historically struggled here in Lafayette? We're able to tell a more nuanced and a richer story about what's going on because it's not just that it's a low performing school but we can tell the direction that they're going and I I really try to encourage courage especially the principles and teachers to pay attention they <hes> I struggle with the accountability system because I think some people give it more weight eight than actually should have. I think it's important. Don't get me wrong. I think it's absolutely important and we should provide this information to people but at the end of the day we're not GonNa go put a schools letter grade on a principles tombstone. It's just not it's not how we live and so I think people should use it for informational purposes. I think school district's need to think about what they're doing relative to resources. I don't think an ace school and an escort should be looked at the same way I I think I believe in earned autonomy if you have a school that's doing really well and going in the right direction. Let them go let them do you what they need to do. If you have a school that struggling figure out what resources you need to put in place waste to do better into to really provide the support that they need right right before we started the podcast you were mentioning with great excitement that we just found out that Louisiana's graduation rate has increased. Would you touch on that were <unk> our graduation rate in two thousand twelve seventy two point three so that means that people that start school together a cohort. Yes it only seventy seventy two point three where graduating in the four years with their cohort so it's our cohort graduation rate it is now eighty one point four so we're really years. Yeah we are really excited about that climb in our in our graduation rate and have a goal of getting to ninety percent by two thousand twenty five so when I say eighty eighty one point four I'm excited about the improvement the same time I think about the other nineteen percent of students who weren't graduating or aren't graduating with their peers and we need to provide the support that are necessary secetary in order to help them be successful. Were also very excited because we're increasing the credentials that students are graduating with so. I mean you think about our world today. It's one thing to graduate with a piece of paper. It's another thing to graduate with a piece of paper in some kind of advanced credential. Maybe that certification to be a welder. Maybe that advanced placement courses for English or biology or Algebra are whatever ever subject areas and so we are over at the point where over fifty percent of our graduates are getting an advanced credential again. That's not enough. We still have the other fifty percent of students to figure out how to get them at advanced credential but that's a lot of kids it is it is it is it's actually the new expectation so it's one thing just to graduate from high school. It's another thing to graduate from high school and to be prepared with <hes> certification and credentials to be ready in that you're going to college got some credits under your belt college and Career Ready. I have really been able to help by talk into some of my friends who have asked ask questions about are higher standards and one way that I've helped people understand is that when I graduated from high school which is a non in Lafayette parish but not far away when I graduated from Abbeville High and went the U._S.. L A number of my classmates were in remedial courses and so that's that is an indication that we weren't being successful with secondary education that once you get the piece of paper it should mean that you're ready and you'll be successful at the next level and that's what we're continuing to do. We have another goal to support every graduate to have the funding may need to continue their education so some hot off the press news is that we we are number one in the country in fast for completion so that is the federal application for student financial aid very important and so we are number one in in the country with completion of fast and that's because Bessie our our board has created a policy that it is at graduation requirement we expect students to we expect schools to support students and getting this documentation completed because that is going to help fund their next step online and our our families were leaving a lot of federal money on the table by not having that information because I think probably most people that get tops the kids that get tops new to fill it out but not everybody knew that there are other avenues funding you WanNa help we wanNA help everyone successfully moved to the next aspect of their life right holly. If you don't mind I wanted to take a moment to thank the advocate they promote the podcast on Mondays and Thursdays Days in their business e newsletter that they send out and I'm just very grateful to Adam Dagel in the staff at the advocate that helped me and getting out the word for the podcast so anybody interested in signing up for their newsletter or seeing what we've posted online at the advocate you you can visit the advocate dot com so on that note thinking about helping others. Can you talk some about early childhood and early childhood educational efforts in our state. I know that the the higher graduation rate isn't directly attributable to the starting a little people earlier but this is our big push right because of our the where we we are ranking in the country. I know there's a big push to get help too little children before they even think about starting pre K. in kindergarten that's right. We want our students to start kindergarten ready to learn and I I if you look at the last six years and the the big jumping graduation rate I knew it would be hard to make a direct correlation to early childhood education but Louisiana has worked over the last couple of decades to increase access to early childhood. Education is a matter of fact when I I was first elected bessie did not have responsibility over early childhood education what we would have called the daycares but in act three of two thousand twelve the early childhood centers were moved over to you Vesey and the Department of Education so now we have more responsibility. It's meant to integrate the system so these centers have been getting federal and state funding for a long time. What we want to do is to make I'm sure that there is a quality that goes along with that with that offering right that what children the experiences that they're having the interactions that they're having with adults in these centers before their school age age are positive experiences that are getting them ready and so that includes talking to children reading the children asking them questions helping them to start to see the world and so we have worked really hard third one to help get information out about what opportunities what centers or even out there so I have a child who's in early childhood center and when it came time for me to to find a location for her I was able to use this information and understand what our choices were? This is another benefit of Louisiana schools dot com so not just that you can find information on our K. twelve but you can also find our information on early childhood centers that take public funding so if center does not take public funding their information will not be here and the public funding comes a lot as a tuitions assistant program assistance program so these are going to be families who you make below a certain threshold and they get assistance in paying tuition which can be very expensive and so in doing so far these centers take public funding. We are really increasing the policies for instance. Their teachers are now getting a C._d.. A and so this is a child development associates is what a C._D.. As a child development associates associates and through the the teachers are learning more about what they should be doing in their classrooms and how they should be planning for the learning of children all with this goal of students entering kindergarten ready to learn because what we find especially for our students who are economically disadvantaged is that they come to school with fewer words right and when your vocabulary smaller it's harder for you to understand and make sense of the things that you're experiencing at school and so I cannot over as over emphasize the importance of families reading with their children talking to their children asking questions of their children to really get them thinking because that's where that's the beginning of learning and children bring all of this with them into the classroom and that's what leads to strong starts in kindergarten and then they started out with more confidence too because they're not failing from the beginning. That's right yeah that's right yeah. I think back about what we were like. I mean I'm much older than you but when I was in kindergarten I just remember we played in the sandbox and we we started reading reading and counting and all but yes you know maybe our parents read more though in the back in the day I don't know well there. Were fewer devices Jan device advice people were not on their phones that <hes> children and even today you see children and I'm guilty of it with my three year old that she would. She loves to watch the LT videos than on l.. P. Kids in so I there were busier time. There are a lot of distractions now and so it's it is really critical that we are reading with children that we're talking in children and asking them questions. Get them ready but I don't. I don't think that that means means in place of play and as a matter of fact I I'm really excited to share that we started a teacher of the year public interests fellowship this past year was the first year that we had Sucha Fellowship and Kim Eckert are two thousand eighteen teacher of the year spent her year focused on recruiting people into the Teaching Profession So oh why is done some incredible work that I can. I can share more information with you so that your listeners can look into it more and so Kim Eckerd did some some really exciting more fair but now are public interest fellowship for this year is going to a teacher from Iberia Parish and she is investigating play in the classrooms and how play can support the learning of content standards so you know it so you can learn through play that that's how. A young children learn. I'm very excited that she was selected. I had no part in choosing people. That's not not anything that I get involved in but I was excited to see that she was selected because sometimes I think we over correct and I think that it's all serious like yes. I don't I don't WanNa see young children in straight rose with worksheets. I won't learning as fun we as adults we learned by doing and I hope to see more children learning by doing so it'll be really the exciting to see what what this teacher discovers but also more importantly. It's a public interest fellowship. The this work is work that we will be able to share more broadly with other teachers and just think really support this and also makes let me think about the recess. I don't know if you've followed in the legislature but this there was legislating recess a bill to require well more reset more recess. I personally had trouble double getting behind it because I feel I don't think we should have too many laws on the books. I think we should empower people to make good decisions merged children that fits so wish that fits the situation and then when we start making laws about it you know there's bad weather but people are her legislated. We see required to have he and so I think that gets tricky. However we know brain breaks our best practice we know our children need to run and play in be physically healthy and mentally healthy and so it's I think I think we will continue to to figure these things out but I am? I'm very supportive of sharing best practices those schools who are able to fit in their school day time. I'm for children to run in play and interact with each other. I you know it's definitely something that that I'm behind. I think it's important for all of us even adults and we just focus so much especially you know being at the bottom of the barrel in the country right now. I just hate to see us get to regimens you because I know teachers already have so many things they have to do to get through their day besides slashing all the documentation and everybody needs to be happy and healthy taking care of to learn. I know you know when I passed the bar a look back holly. This is a really dumb aside that we would shoot hoops every day and and go through things like the different code courses and I haven't you guys studied with because there weren't many women at the time and I'm doing my hands were talking but as you're going through the motions again I still remember those day. I think there's rain that are just firing right now. Are I mean you know there was some I thought it was moving to Texas and hadn't even take all the classes and it was so much fun because we don't really studying. We were just like going over stuff right and I'm just grateful to my friends but it was commonsense stuff and I'm glad to see I'm glad to see you learning learning line. We have a new baby in the family. I had a nephew who was born last week and just watching this the movements you know and and it's so isolation of Oh that feeder those these and it's it's learning is fine and if if learnings not find you're doing it wrong right. You are doing it wrong if it's not fun learning is fun right well. Let's see I want to ask you about your consulting work. Because you're taking your knowledge you know your degrees and your experience and I'm sure experience on the best seaboard and you founded at at talents last year and you do education consulting which you talk about that sure I will so bessie is not paying job. There's there's no salary that comes with Bessie in no benefits. Will we get per diem but it's not a paying job so I am really excited about my consulting. I actually am going to be doing a review of policies and practices of <hes> for teachers and leaders so I was really moved by the quote that every system is perfectly designed to get the results it gets Oh and when I think about this actually a quote from Health Sciences I would I would tell who said it but that the attribution is is disputed that good or bad every system is perfectly designed to get the results again so that makes it takes me back to thinking about systems and when we think about the fact that we do not have enough teachers especially far special education science math and those kinds of things it forces me to think about what aspect of the system is not connecting to others in order to get what we need and so maybe it's a communication problem. Maybe students in college. Don't know that while they're majoring in biology they should go ahead and get a teaching certificate because teaching is the best profession on earth and then they might enjoy spending time being teachers and then <hes> so I think looking at systems and figuring out where we're falling short of the outcomes we want it really pushes us to make a difference in so <hes> so the perfect education talent system. If we had the perfect education talent system we would attract everyone we need into the profession we would hire them. We would place them. We would develop them them throughout their careers so moving away from this idea of I went into the my classroom I was given a set of keys and one of the administrators on the staff told me to have a good year and the Internet year now I'm not saying I didn't have help because I had an amazing mentor that helped my growth but the same person who told me to have a good year at the end of the year asked for specific curriculum book back and when I couldn't find it right away she said well what have you been using and so but it was on her wasn't on me. She gave me a stack of books. How is supposed to know that was like the Bible of my first year teaching but we need to develop people throughout their careers? I'm sure you're a better lawyer today than you were. When you first passed the bar but we have to have that growth mindset and so then we also have to figure out how to leverage talent especially because our schools have such diverse needs so how do you leverage talent to make sure people are being truly truly their talents are being used and then ultimately we have to retain the best for our students because when we think about it you know they're gonna be kids who will continue to come to school who are unprepared right but if they get strong teachers three years in the row the research tells us three years of strong teachers will close the gap? That's the answer I know. People like to talk about facilities. I know people like to talk about curriculum. They like to talk about assessments but it's the teachers that are the number one in school factor that make a difference for kids and leaders are the number two so these are the people and my consulting is all about providing the support and and the system in place to make sure people are successful. You know of always so glad you're bringing all that up. I've always supported facilities improvements but I know in our own family are girls went to two schools neither one they were both Nice. You know very high achieving achieving schools spit one of them every building you have to walk outside essay in cade in the kids never even thought about it. They just put on galoshes and these are high school kids to off they went and the academy always had roof leaks and problems albums but it was the teachers in the mentoring and the the I guess the nurturing yeah sure the kids need your Matt. Teachers are the number one factor that make a difference not that they don't deserve though a top notch facility. I ain't a say that they don't right and I don't. I I understand facilities are important. The most important aspect of a child schooling is the teachers that they receive along the way. There's no disputing it. We all know it as human beings who've gone through education and the research is very clear so we need to do everything we can to support our teachers so that they're growing growing because the children are changing. I our children are come to school with different needs than they had ten years ago and we have to support people in in providing for those needs because when the children's needs are met then they're ready to learn and so with a talents you work with people schools and identify what that particular need might being is not if you can close the gap what it is. That's right so with districts. Ideally I feel like districts. <unk> are an incredible unit of change and then ultimately with schools and so I have received some foundation funding to do my first pilot with the district and I'm really excited to that office and hopefully see well branch out either with Moore Foundation funding here in Louisiana which would be incredible or even going directly to the districts in in schools and other states. My Best Service does make it a little more complicated. I don't WanNa be going into schools and asking them to pay me to do something when I'm while I'm serving on the state board so I'll I'll just have to be creative and continue to seek foundation funding or our goto nearby states. I told someone earlier today that mine dream is ten years from now. I'm going to be so busy busy with this. It's going to be hard to get me on the phone exciting congratulations thank you. I have a question talking about <hes> the teachers being the most important person in a students you know educational career I saw recently <hes> there was new law passed that Governor Edward signed I think in early June and it's too it's about suicide awareness and having teachers <hes> I guess trained on how to identify problems that it may be a rising to prevent suicide which touch on that place yes so suicide is a reality in our society and it's one of the many aspects of young person's life that are teachers. I need to be aware of and just identifying the warning signs and knowing how to access resources and supports for students can save lives and so we want kids to Graduate College Collagen career ready but most of all we want our children to be healthy and go on and lead healthy lives. I know that the teachers you know see the kids probably a lot more than parents and family do because the kids are at school all day and that can probably see how they interact with their patterns yes see see patterns and changes bullied or they fitting into they yes yes isolate themselves as kind of things and it goes along with this need to continue to learn and it's it's one aspect I I know early in my career I took a class that helped me to learn what the warning signs were and it it's just important to be able to watch out for our children and and get them the hell they need right and then you're helping the whole family that's right so you have brought a lot of information here and I know you're walking textbook on things. I've haven't even thought to ask you. Have I asked the questions you were hoping to answer or are there things you'd like to bring up. I do want to reiterate arrate. The Louisiana Schools Dot Com which is an opportunity for families to go and learn more about their local schools. It is a tool for anyone who's looking to move around to get more information ocean and so I do want to provide that that link and we can we can share it of course so it's Louisiana schools dot com also just want to emphasize the importance of reading to children and talking to them that there is <hes> <hes> the researchers really strong. If if you're if you have extra time to spend with your children it's a wonderful way to connect with them but also prepare them for future learning down the road and so and then say that all my contact. Attacked information is on our best sees bessie website. I'm more than happy to help individual constituents who have trouble navigating the system who who needs support. I'm more than happy to provide that opportunity provide that support. Thank you Hollywood here with Jason Sikora from writer solutions and Jason It looks like you have more questions than normal notes but listen and then he'll pick up on things that went right over my head so how thank you for being here you talk so passionately about education and as I was reading down questions you were actually answering them. So one of them was advice for parents. They get their kids ready for school and reading you said is huge one reading to children talking to children. I it comes naturally to me because I'm a talker but with my own son is just verbalizing what I was doing. Why or we're going to go? We're about to go to this place this is these are my expectations for your behavior sure this is why they're my expectations asking him if he has questions mentally preparing children for things and so I understand for people who are not as I just. I'm a talker so it's not surprising that that's what I would do but I you can't underestimate talking children through what you're thinking helping them to be more. Meta cognitive is is a way to to help them prepare. It's reading to those children talking to them and getting them ready and you're talking about not just little people yes eh school. That's right. Yes yes all the way up. One of my other questions that you already answered was when it comes to the success of student what's most important parents teachers infrastructure administration and I think you enter that well the teachers the most important and the teacher is the teachers the most important in school factor but their home environment and their parents determined can influence how students do in school and so oh I that's why it families are so important and I think about it is that you know lots of times. I'd like to meet families as they're walking out of the door of the hospital without Bamyan say oh here's a stack books re to re to the and love them so families are critical but the when I think about society and the reason that I am passionate about education is it's the piece that we can control role. We can't control what home environments our children live in but we can control the quality of education we provide them and that's why when I think about the way I wanNA use my life and the way I want to make a difference in our community and in the world it's with education because it we truly can make a difference. You're answering my questions as I get through them. What my first question was rookie to education question? My paternal grandparents were educators. My grandfather died when I was too when I was about seven the local communities so they I was born in East Texas and they taught and lived in East Texas so the local communities very very small community had what was called Pine Lynn Day and for Pilin Day one year my grandfather was posthumously honored for his contributions to the community and so as a child seeing my grandmother up on stage accepting the award made a difference so at that I knew educators make a difference educators or to be respected but the most powerful aspect of this award is the my grandmother hung it right next to her back door so every time I used the back tour of my grandmother's House. The award was right in my face. I wish I had the plaque in my own house because it it means so much to me and so it just communicated throughout my life and I think that's where I struggle because not everybody's getting that message. Not Everybody knows how wonderful or powerful teaching can be but it's not it's something that no one can convince me otherwise otherwise. There's nothing that anyone could say or do that could change the way I think about teaching because it was ingrained in me for very early on so I don't think I had a choice cry like bay set me up. The other thing. Is I believe <music>. I believe in genetics. I believe that there are certain traits and dispositions that I inherited from my family that helped make me a good teacher right like being outgoing loving learning. These are things that I think are genetically part of me way and so I don't I don't think there was any other profession farm fair enough. I like asking that question because my wife's teacher and that's always a similar answer like a drive to make a change and and be a part of this thing of helping society. Yes the graduation rate increase what do attribute that extra ten percent to or what's what's the stats that would help that so one one aspect from the board perspective is elevating the importance of it in our accountability system and so you talk about what gets measured gets done and so the graduation rate is important when you look at the High School Accountability and I think that that's the difference I also think as a state we have gotten really clear about what we want to achieve so we articulate our goals around kindergarten Garton readiness more students hitting the mastery level in elementary middle school and in highschool them having access to college career opportunities and funded education after high school so we're we're getting very very specific. We're not trying to do million things from the state perspective we know in the in the classrooms teachers have a lot going on. I mean we talked about the suicide awareness and those kinds of things but from the state perspective we're trying to get it very narrow and very specific and that strategic right strategic work is being clear about what you want to achieve and prioritizing those things and so I think that's I think that's part of the change and I look forward to twenty twenty-five twenty-five and hitting the ninety percent mark no that's fantastic we could talk for hours my final question though anything that you've worked on or are working on the dislike super excites you any single project. I'm excited about the educator talent work that I'm able to do through my consulting because I I think about it this way. If we make our school district the best place on earth for teachers just to teach and leaders to lead then I believe it'll be the best place on earth for kids to learn and so I'm really excited about that possibility of thinking about and pushing far in advocating for systems the take very good care of adults so the adults can take very good care of the children awesome well. Thank you so much for being here holly. I appreciate it in January. Thank you thank you yeah you know I meant to ask you about one less thing holly of fishing from memories and I it's a benefit Rodeo for the Alzheimer's Association that you originally started with some friends and your husband Carrick and understand it's transitioning but would you talk about that. Yes so fishing for memories has been a very important aspect of our lives. We've had eleven rodeos. It started in two thousand nine like a country song. Yes eleven rodeos. It was such an amazing experience. I did not connect it with education. When I I started right but then as I started thinking about it the one thing I'm trying to support everyone in achieving which is a quality education can be robbed by Alzheimer's right and so to think about attacking backing it for both ends was was very empowering and something we've had a lot of fun? Doing we have raised over three hundred thousand dollars for the 'cause we've given away one hundred twenty five thousand dollars to the participants participants lifetime licenses to over forty children so they're over forty children out in the community who will not have to buy a fishing license for the rest of their lives thankful to the tournament and the sponsors and everybody who put it on my husband's grandfather passed away with Alzheimer's my grandfather has it. It is a horrible disease to watch and I was with my grandfather this weekend. We're very fortunate. He still has his personality. He still knows who we are but you have the same conversation every two minutes. It's like it's so predictable. What are you doing today? We're going fishing. Oh did you catch anything. We didn't go fishing yet and so it's it's just such a horrible disease Aziz and I am really proud that we've raised awareness because like a lot of diseases there are people who suffer in silence we know the caretakers are the ones who really struggle. I've my mom and uncle in and grandmother who who helped take care of my grandfather. It's it's tough this on them right. It's really difficult and so we've been really proud. I can tell you a fishing tournament is a great way to make money. You're in this area because we have have so many people who love it and I think also promoting the outdoors and family environment my my son and I were talking about what made our Rodeo successful and I think the being oriented around families in fishing was was part tired of it so it's it's been great. We're transitioning it over to vermilion Catholic and excited about starting an event in the community. I hope it's around for my yeah in for my family to fish wish that was the bad part about it is my husband. Son couldn't fish together all these years so we're looking forward to them. Being on a fishing team together next year and and intercoastal city is a place where that's really important to our families. My husband's grandfather was Maxi Pierce. He had a business in that area. He actually had the boat launch in a store in a restaurant and so we think it's great to to bring people back in and have a lot of fun. It sounds make a lot of memories congratulations congratulations on doing that because it's got to be so meaningful and it has been a very special part of our lives very special and I want to commend you and your family to. I've had the pleasure of meeting your family and I know your son is actually not been coming in business man. I know he's across fishermen and makes money right. Yes yeah you make him account for his expenses. Oh yes we anyway we work. Ethic is a very important family value and our son is going to have a very strong work ethic. He's actually helping some family today so we're we're very proud of him. Holly Bobo fee. I want to thank you for taking time to come undiscovered Lafayette today for those of you <hes> curious again she represents us in district seven on the Louisiana Bessie board overseeing our educational efforts in Louisiana and an holly they can just go. They can just type in Bessie. I'm sure it's easy to be E._S._e.. Louisiana believes dot com is is that the best Louisiana believes dot com and there's a link Tebessie but if you Google Board of elementary and secondary education or Holly Bobo fee you all are defined that's right. There's not a lot of Holly Bo fees well. Thank you for your service to I. I know working working as an unpaid serving as never is not something you go for but the rewards have seen you get from your position have to spend well worth it so yeah and all about making a different. We'll look thank you all to for. You're listening <hes> appreciate the support we discover Lafayette. You can find this interview in all of our interviews at discover Lafayette Dot Net and please subscribe you can get it delivered to your phone every week. Whether you have an apple phone or an Android <hes> can get it through.

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Leigh Rachal of Acadiana Regional Coalition on Homelessness and Housing  A Wakeup Call on Need for Longterm Community Investment

Discover Lafayette

49:35 min | 1 year ago

Leigh Rachal of Acadiana Regional Coalition on Homelessness and Housing A Wakeup Call on Need for Longterm Community Investment

"This is jammed swept and you're listening to discover Lafayette. A podcast dedicated to the people and rich culture of Lafayette the gateway to South Louisiana. Will usually tape in the offices of Raider today. We're taping at my home. But I do want to thank. Raider hands on it service provider that integrates all of your needs for advanced technical support, effective communication options and cybersecurity raiders motto. Is You just wanted to work? We understand, please. Visit Raider Solutions Dot Com for more information. I'd like to thank Iberia Bank, our premier sponsor, they support our community in so many ways, and their dynamic team is committed to serving the banking needs of clients in this region, and throughout the southeastern United States, I. Very Bank offers the resources of National Bank with the personal touch of a community bank. Please visit Iberia Bank Dot Com for more information. The generosity of Lafayette General Health also makes this podcast possible. Lafayette General has been a leader in telemedicine with the health anywhere. APP Your family can access quality urgent care at anytime without an appointment all from the comfort of your home. It's the waiting room redefined. Download the APP today at algae health anywhere DOT COM. Our guest today is Lee. Rochelle Executive Director of the Acadian Regional Coalition on Homelessness and housing otherwise known as arch. She also co chairs. The ACADIAN housing alliance in her role at arch play coordinates a coalition of community stakeholders, working to end homelessness and housing instability in a No. With. The disruptions caused by the covid nineteen shutdown. It seemed a good idea to get lease. Take on our communities, current homeless population, and what she anticipates will happen in the next few months as the governors and federal governments, moratoriums evictions are lifted Lee Richelle welcome to discover Lafayette. Thanks so much for having me. Yeah, thank you for joining me at my home. We're still taping out of the studio. And I appreciate your kindness in making the drive over here, share my pleasure hopefully soon. As the weeks go by won't be lifting all these restrictions and people can get back in their offices back on payrolls and getting back to normal, but I'm assuming you've seen a lot in your role at large so before we talk about that I'd like to hear about your background and your passion for ending homelessness. If you could talk about that sure and you mentioned. Seeing our community getting back to normal, and I think one of the things that we have to recognize. Is that families individuals will not really get back to normal until their housing is stabilize as long as they feel like housing, his still insecure for them. We're GONNA have a hard time moving back towards. Normalcy in our lives and as I. Have realized that through the years you know worked in a variety of nonprofits and most of them have had housing focus to the work that we've done. It really has become very apparent to me. That housing is sort of the foundation of our lives. So I've worked. With local the local nonprofits, including two three to. Volunteers America Catholic services but all of those have been working directly with those who are lower socioeconomic levels, those who are struggling or directly with people that are experiencing homelessness. What in your past like a young girl did you think you'd be doing this kind of work? What what touched you to even start working in this nonprofit sector that helps people with homeless issues. What prompted that Louis I think mostly it comes from a place of. Faith a raised within Christianity and really took to heart this idea that we are all brothers and sisters and that the. What happens to one of us is happening all of us and so anytime that somebody is hurting hurting anytime. Somebody is hurting. That's my sister or my brother. That's hurting and so when you see. A person who is experiencing homelessness and you look at them and literally see that's your sister, or that's your brother. Then what would you do for your biological sister? A brother and that's what we should be doing for all of our. Co Humanity. Who is struggling and so it really came from that place. I don't know that there was. You know when I was a little girl. If you'd asked me what I wanted to do, probably would've said swim with the dolphins. Back. I don't know what point that switch happened for me. But I. I really do. Feel a sort of a compulsion to. An optimism around the idea that we can pull together as a community that we can. Solve, these problems that oftentimes seem huge insurmountable that. I have seen our community pulled together and do amazing things, especially in the face of disasters, and so I don't think that covid nineteen is different in that way I think it is yet another opportunity for our Katie to prove that together we can. Fill in the blink. In this case, I think together we can end homelessness together. We can end housing instability. A love this quote. Or believe that you shared with me. You believe passionately in the wild idea that housing is a basic human need, and that everyone should have access to safe, decent and affordable housing in. It's that underlying security. That's the basis of any other achievement in life. You're insecure about where you're going to lay your head at night. It's kind of hard to plan for college. At Rate Yeah you. You'll hear story after story from teachers about trying to educate children who don't have safe stable housing and that that's a struggle for their children in the classroom. And you'll hear story after story from healthcare professionals. Trying to? Provide treatment to those who don't have stable housing, and it impacts their ability to provide healthcare story after story and so same with employers. If you have an employee who is sleeping in their car at night, unable to wash our clothes at. Those really will impact their ability to keep employment. Every other aspect of our life is dependent on this idea that we would have a safety center affordable place to sleep. With access to hygiene with a locked door to secure a belongings, those are the things that are basic basic needs for each of us, and and without them, the rest of life cannot go back to normal riot. A known when I did some volunteer work with the education system as an example at one skull J. Faulk at six or seven hundred kids. I don't know how many kids they have nail bit. They would be at any time maybe like a hundred homeless heads, and it just doesn't seem possible, but they would go from with their mom, or whoever the grandmother from pillar to post. And through no fault of their own, but it's very hard to pick up. Yeah, child doesn't know now you said Sobel. Life is when is slam home at the assignment to color this apple? There's no Red Crayon at Grandma's house. And so, what do they do when they get their? You know. How do they keep up with their classmates? If the the thing they're worried about is who's going to pick them up. And where are they going to go? And how are the and you know I think it's super important that we know that those the parents of those children do not love their children any less than the parents of children who have stable housing It's not for lack of want to provide that it really has become a an impossibility for many families to afford housing. Should explain. Please how funding is accomplished for arch. The acadian a regional coalition on Homelessness and Housing 'cause I knew about you, but I didn't understand how you were structured, and where the majority of your funding comes from short. Arches. A what we call a continuum of care agency and so. The Federal Department of Hud. Housing and urban development is. Requires that essentially. Every piece of America's divided up into a continuum of CARE so every. Square. Mile falls into some continuum of care and for Acadian Arches, the lead agency of our continuum of care for Hud. And our job as the continuum of CARE agency is to. Help to facilitate the distribution of and monitor the distribution of the federal funds that come into the region for homeless assistance programs so there are. Funds that come into the area to assist with shelter. There's not near enough of those, but there are some of those. There's also some funds that come into the area from Hud are for supported housing for those who had been homeless, who we've worked collaboratively across the region to get back into housing. Who need supports? Either obtain or maintain that housing, so those federal dollars are allocated to the local agencies by arch. Also than we monitor use those funds and the outcome measures of those agencies we work to coordinate a system of care that is a client centered trauma informed and follows national best practices of working to get people housed I is the foundation and then wrap around supports that they need to keep that housing, and so we offer various trainings, those kinds of things into the agencies that are doing the hands on work, sort of as a support agency. We set policies and procedures that the agencies all agreed to follow that are again, but based on the national best practices, so it's kind of role that arch plays. As a continuum of CARE agency. But we know that in order to end homelessness in her region, we to have affordable housing for people to move into. There's not near enough and won't ever be enough. Federal Dollars to cover the housing costs of everybody who becomes homeless, and not everybody needs that level of support, and so we need to have a system housing system in place that can address the housing needs of every single family Some families need a very light touch. They just need a maybe a rent deposit. And then they're on their own, and they're fine after that. Maybe they need Just, some help negotiating with their landlords, so that the maintenance can get done, or maybe they're a whole range of different needs, and so we need to have a housing system in place that supports. People whether they're They own their own home. And now it's fallen into disrepair. How do we? Match up services. That can help repair that. We have elderly and disabled individuals in our community who? Don't have access to adequate plumbing or don't have access to adequate kitchen facilities in their own home a home. They own We have others who live in houses that have the houses in the name of a deceased relative, and so they need help clearing the title and getting it into their name, those kinds of situations, and so are tips really started in the last year or so to to reach beyond just homelessness in the manner that we usually think of it to really try to address this overall systematic approach to housing so that everybody can have access to that safe decent affordable house that we. Know is the foundation for their life. I have a question about how this works. How does arch coordinate with other agencies in the community? I used to do the legal work for the Office of community development and I know that Hud funds were used. On the block grants to maybe do housing rehabs tear down houses that run safe. How do you coordinate with I'm assuming it's Catholic charities and all the other groups then help these issues. Where where do you fit in that continuum of care? Yeah so arches role is really. A coordinator and Co.. An entity that can help with the collaborative efforts to set policies to offer trainings for best practices to elevate that conversation. To offer opportunities to measure systemic outcome measures. We Have to do that for your federal funds. Or Right Gripe, right? We do have to look at that for the funds, so that's where our what our role is in that. Okay. I want to take a break for discover left hits past and when we come back Leeann liked to talk about our current situation. What's going on with the pandemic and kind of get your thoughts on? What's happening but I I'd like to pause for. Discover Lafayette's past sponsored by our friends at Raleigh Marketing a full service digital marketing agency that can assist you with marketing, automation, content, development, search, engine, optimization, and strategies on how to use social media to turn into a money maker for your business for more information. Please visit rally. Marketing Dot Com. And now the moment. The arrival in eighteen, eighty of the railroad in Lafayette, in what was then known as familiar bill, opened a new era of growth and opportunity for locals. It also attracted many new residents. The being was the areas first work locomotive that reached for million Ville as tracks from New Orleans were completed Southern Pacific donated the say bean to the city of Lafayette in one, thousand, nine, hundred, twenty three, and it stood as a monument documenting the achievements of early railroad workers. The train was later donated for scrap metal to aid the war effort during World War Two. Lafayette grew to become a division center for some twenty thousand Southern Pacific railroad employees according to a plaque and the train depot. The station was originally built by the Texas and New Orleans Railroad in one thousand nine eleven, but some contend. It was actually nineteen twelve in any event it burned in a fire and was abandoned on May Eleventh. Two thousand one. A new train station was completed in two thousand seven through a an eleven million dollar restoration of the station by city government. The Federal Transit Administration and then Louisiana Department of Transportation. The depot now houses a city transit office. A waiting room for bus in Amtrak passengers in office of the US Postal Service and the city parish transportation department. If you haven't visited the Beautiful Rosa Parks Transportation Center located at one hundred Lee Avenue. It is definitely worth a few moments of your time. Okay, Lira show! Welcome back to discover laugh yet. So. We were talking before the break about. What your role is at arch, but with this pandemic and you mentioned this is just it's not the end all. Disaster because we've had bad once before, and we'll have some in the future, but it's beyond a stemming this. A lot of people have been out of work. They haven't qualified or haven't gotten assistance and they probably have rent. Do Mortgages do and if we can start maybe with what you've seen in the community? Because I know, there's been a moratorium until June. Fifth Right under State Law Governor John Bel. Edwards has said no evictions. Processes can begin until they lift the moratorium, which is June fifth, and then there's some days up to go by before a landlord can evect attendant for non-payment of rent so. What are you seeing? Right nail? What do you anticipate saying right now? I'm afraid. We're in a little bit of a comb. Before the storm we have seen. A significant number of families about two hundred ish. Families who've already become homeless as a result of Covid nineteen those families were not least holders they were doubled, tripled up overcrowded situations with friends or family and had to leave those situations. Or they were perhaps paying their own way at a hotel because they. Didn't If a family hits unexpected expense or unexpected loss of income. Maybe that happened a few months before they lost their home at that point, and then many times, families don't have enough saved up to be able to immediately find another place pay all the deposits first month's rent, etc, and so oftentimes those families that were but would move into a hotel, and so they would pay hotel. Call that the hotel trap because. Hotels are generally expensive places to live. and. So it's very difficult for families to save up enough money to then get out of the hotel situation, saving that deposit is so hard to do under those circumstances. So we had a number of families who were in that hotel trap before Kobe then lost, additional income had additional unexpected expenses because of covert, and they then weren't able to keep paying their hotels I'm so those families moved out into their cars or into the streets, literally and where identified either by law enforcement, or by outreach workers, or called in asking for some assistance and arches. Utilize hotel rooms to expand the shelter capacity of our region, so we did have about two hundred households that. already in the what spend two months have become homeless however. Like a mentioned none of those release holders, none of those owned their home, and so folks who are living in homes with lease in their name, or have a mortgage are under some protection rate now people can't be a victim until after June fifth, and then there's a five day notice period so June tenth. Really is the. First day we may see that. And then there's some federal protections that expire July twenty fifth for those who have hud backed mortgages on the property. So the. Those households on right now. It's a little bit hard to predict how many we're going to see. who go through a fiction process and have to leave their homes, but we are. Because with incredibly high. Employment numbers with the incredibly high numbers of calls I systems that we are seeing in terms of requests for food assistance in terms of some of the other types of assistance that people are asking for We can sort of extrapolate out that there a number of people who are struggling to pay their rent. We know L. US was reporting a couple of weeks ago that they had. Little over four thousand households that were sixty days or more behind on their utility bill just like the two months. So as soon as the utility disconnections, or possibly, those families would be in line for about for disconnects on their utilities. Even if we assume that only about ten percent of those also need help with their rent. That's a lot and if the average rent is seven fifty or eight hundred dollars a month. And they need two or three months worth of rent to get caught back up. That can be very overwhelming for a family that's on the edge and really not one that most families can recover from. Let's take a moment on now. A no through my work with Melinda Taylor habitat of learn more about what an average apartment cost and for people that are minimum wage or lower income. You know it's very hard to find a two bedroom apartment. Yeah, less than eight hundred or so right now. If you're working at minimum wage seven twenty five an hour, you have to work seventy eight hours. Seventy eight hours a week. Right to be able to afford fair market rent for a two bedroom in our area. So you got routier fulltime jobs for that, plus all the other expenses I can see how the spirals out of control in I know. That's not the point of our show today, but. It just seems almost like once. You're upside down. Right almost must seem impossible to get back on your feet right. We know that there are. Almost fifty percent. It's like forty five percent of the renter's in Louisiana. Who are what we call housing cost burden. meaning that they spend more than thirty five percent of their income on housing costs. And even those who have mortgages we have about twenty one percent who are housing. Costs burdened meaning that they are spending more than thirty five percent on their housing costs and so the. Unexpected expense unexpected loss of income those families really don't have much of a safety net to fall back on, and so very quickly can become homeless. There is a perception sometimes that becoming homeless is what happens to those people. Fill in the blank with how you want to categorize those people, but it's usually not somebody like you, and so wherever we are. I, think one of the things that we. Need to be very clear with ourselves about his that for many many Americans for many many people living in Acadia. Homelessness really is one paycheck away and We don't have a very good safety net system in place for that and with this cove in nineteen crisis, we are about to really our safety net system, afraid as families for the first time ever are struggling to pay rent as we see more and more people who experience that unexpected loss of income who are now faced with. Food shortages in their home in her. Juggling paying Peter Stealing from Peter to pay Paul as they don't pay their utility bill, and then try to pay this and try to pay that and hope that there's going to be enough money. By the time they have to pay that utility bill, and so families really are doing that Juggle Mindy for the first time. Many families who have not had to face that level of difficulty with getting those bills paid And that comes from having too much of their income. Go to housing costs for too long. the rest of that income needs to pay for the other basic necessities, there's just not enough for savings and so We really need to take a look at long-term solutions. Second help Lower housing costs and long-term solution second help increase worker wages ways that we can make housing vouchers available to are extremely low income households to increase their ability to cover their rent. So right now with the ED, the money should have been distributed through the cares act and others have you. Has Your Agency arch gotten more money directly? To cover some of this, it's going on, so arch does receive some of the federal funds they come from head to the House Inc, and then to arch for the Acadian region the dollar's called the emergency solutions, grants, funds, and Katie and region received about seven hundred thirteen thousand dollars, which sounds like a lot of money until they start giving it up it's eight parishes and Acadian assist seven, hundred and thirteen, thousand divided amongst eight parishes worth of assistance. To. People. Hundreds of thousands of people who are struggling right now. some of it can be used for rent or utility assistance, a case management to help support households. Those dollars also are. Available to support the work of emergency shelters or a street outreach teams that and we've really relied a lot on our street, outreach teams and our shelters in the last couple of months to. Prevent of a huge public health crisis in terms of the those who are been experiencing homelessness. Typically our emergency shelters are very congregate settings. Yeah, we try to place as many people inside of a building as we can to be able to afford a roof over somebody's head as a safety measure but with covid nineteen. We've had to increase social distancing space. People out those shelters have really reduced capacity to keep people safe which has meant that they've been less They've been able to surf your individuals. Those agencies locally. Let's say Lafayette who do sheltering so Catholic charities is usually our largest. Shelter Agency. There's also There has been salvation army though they've. Just, closed their shelter, permanently, not cove related was a decision at the national office deploys. And, so they were actually scheduled to close right before cove in nineteen, and then pushed it back to allow the community to have a little bit more shelter space through the worst of the pandemic. Hopefully, we're through the worst now. They just closed last week. sheltering capacity there. There's also a family promise which works in partnership with local churches to shelter families. The outreach center which also houses an emergency shelter? The families with children faith house which. Focused specifically on those who are fleeing domestic violence. That! That's going to be in to this to. Yes, so we we definitely have seen a huge increase in domestic violence, incidents both in terms of numbers, and also in terms of the -ality of the events themselves. And the level of violence that Victims are having to endure is is pretty startling. Do People. Call you your agency when they're looking for help, but are they call? These agencies directly as I'm sure I should say yeah as a community. We ask that people dial. If they're calling proudly dial two on one and that way, they can get directed to the most appropriate resources for them. Resources change pretty frequently specially during disasters and so all of. Of the agencies do their to keep to one one updated on what's happening within their agency and anybody who's in need can call two on one and get directed to wear. Those resources are that will meet the needs for their particular situation, and we know different scenarios are required different resources, so it's really great that they can really listen to what's happening in that. Family situation and respond appropriately. You'd mentioned to me that some families were being put up in local hotel rooms and I'm talking about Lafayette here but I know you've got your a parachute. Is that right? Yeah, eight pinch. So were you the one arch dealing directly with people like paying for the hotel rooms? Is this because there is no more space facilities? You just mentioned he has. They ended up under your umbrella. Yes, when we. Realized that shelters were going to have to operate differently, and in some cases that would mean some decreased capacity, and as we begin to see the surgeon families becoming homeless arch a number grateful to the arch Puerto. Directors decided. We would just stand up the Emergency Hotel program a very We beginning to see it in some areas of the country that folks were doing that. It became a best practice pretty quickly thereafter so I'm really proud of the Acadian community we. We put out the requests for funds and people responded offered. Financial assistance to rocket happen private donors, five individuals private hotel-owners who called me and said you know if you can pay for two at thirty dollars a night. I'll toss a free one and so every two we bought we got a free when they were reducing their right. Yeah, they were they were empty and so You know as a way for them to help, and then also away for the local economy to get a little bit of a boost as those hotels got a little bit of money, so it was a win. Think on both ends but yeah I mean even sitting here today we have two hundred and thirty three households in hotels still. Some of the folks that we put in originally have moved onto other housing arrangements. Others are still being identified even today who are becoming homeless who their situations that they've been in have are no longer working in so but we really don't have shelters that are able to accommodate news individuals yet. And, so we're GONNA be in this mode I. Think for a little while. How can you sustain that? Because you K for hotel rooms, even thirty dollars a night. Yeah, she's a great. Big. Generosity I. Hotel owners. Yes. Well so we have begun to make the shift to where the state is covering the cost of the hotel rooms. It's still through the emergency solutions grant funds. Those as I mentioned, Candy's for shelter in in this case, just expanded shelter capacity out to the hotels, so those funds are being made available at the state level for. The hotel room costs moving forward but it will be time limited, and we will have to make housing plans so that all of those households don't end up back in their cars on the streets the last thing we want to have happened after this is that we end up with encampments, so are more more individuals sleeping in parks or in abandoned buildings or out in the woods. Encampment L. Encampment oftentimes is That's the terminology we will use when you see people sleeping kind of in a congress setting under a bridge or all along in particular sidewalk or A number of the larger cities that have a very large unsheltered population have encampments. With. It can be anywhere from twenty people to hundreds of people who are kind of crowded together often for safety, and for Camaraderie in that Who just are sheltering outside sleeping outside. Sometimes intense and sometimes not. How many children do you anticipate them? Do you know about the children that are homeless will right now in in hotels we have about seventy five children. It's about thirty five households with children in the hotels. But we always have children in our traditional emergency shelters and there are. Approximately. Forty something right now in the Lafayette. Family shelters so we. Children are are very vulnerable in this situation. We know that the. Longer that a child is living in a homeless situation as a child, the more likely they will become homeless as an adult and so Gosh. For Char it does, and as we mentioned earlier, the the ability for that child to do the other parts of life that children are supposed to be able to do. Is Difficult to education becomes more difficult. Social interactions become more difficult and and the family. Stress Level is direct you know is impacted by. This time in homelessness, it's a very traumatic experience even when shelters are doing everything, right and doing our best to be very trauma informed client centered and following the best practices, the active losing your house is very destabilizing for adults, but especially for children I did a podcast on adverse childhood experiences, and for another podcast do nourish your health and I had no idea. That had these experiences. No matter what they are I'm sure viewing domestic violence, being homeless, but they they wear their head throughout your whole life including your health, your diabetes cancer. Of everything, all kinds of health issues and emotional issues. It's critical for us to realize that while it may seem like charity to. Or bailing somebody out or something like that that if we look at it from a purely economics perspective, it is far less expensive as a society for us to prevent these issues and to put investments in to making affordable housing accessible, having safety net systems in place so that people do not become homeless. The impact on a person's life when the result of? Dan Expected. Loss of income or expenses homelessness. Then the ripple effects throughout their life, and through the life of the community are not only dramatic and bad, awful and things. We just don't like they're expensive and they're expensive for us as a community, they're expensive for that family to dig their way out of and so if if we put the investment in the front end, it's goes much further for us as a community. You were mentioning earlier about family promises share destroyed. Found tape. Earlier several years back we were helping. I church downtown first United Methodist that would put up some families, and so I love doing the are girls went with us. And when we were there serving food. It was close to Thanksgiving, it seems and there was a family there that we had known from the Academy of the Sacred Heart, which is a private school in the tuition is not inexpensive. And luckily my girls they didn't even think about it was just friends you know, but I remember talking with my husband, saying what, but for the grace of God any of us could be there because if they had gone from. Having their children rolled in a private school to being homeless. Yeah, it's one of those that housing costs burden. When we see time and time again that families are spending more than fifty percent of their income on their housing costs those dollars. They're not spending anywhere else. You know so. They're not contributing to the local economy but they're certainly not saving it, you know some families do prioritize expensive education and so they'll spend fifty percent of their income on housing and another twenty five percent of their income on. Education and then the rest of the twenty five percent goes to food and basic costs, and then next thing you know there's been a last jobless. The oil economies gone. The job's done. You know that the big mortgage and the health control either health could fail. Yeah, I mean it really can be, or you know the primary breadwinner in the household could. Have Significant Health, issue or an accident or something and so. All of those things are contributing factors to having households who very quickly can realize that that that foundation is slipping. And without taking place, and we really struggle as a community to. Address them raw so. And there was no. There is no way we could see this shutdown like Oh, no way we could look and so it's been ironic to watch semi white collar. People have been able to hold on at work from home, but a vast majority. You know the rod was just swept out from under them. Yeah, think I think it's really important from an equity perspective to to to make note that people caller. Hit. Harder by this disaster both in terms of health outcomes, and also in terms of the economic hit service workers are having a much harder time, maintaining and so one of the things that. We have to do moving forward. Is look at this with an equity? Lens, and make community decisions about how we respond in ways that are equitable across the board, and that take into account multiple viewpoints. I think it's critical, and we need to be gathering the data. What works what doesn't work and making mid course corrections to get it right? I know that in the news. Recently, there was some money that was directed to Lafayette. Parish and I'm sure you have some thoughts about it. All went to small business loans, and we all understand the need for small businesses to stay open and going so that they can pay people in pay their own bills. I look though what other communities were doing around our state. You Know Shreveport. Baton Rouge New Orleans and they were, they were overwhelmingly putting it towards the homeless issue or the Rows Reynolds System housing assistance with a smaller proportion going to small business assistance. They're trying to make do what they can. which is, it's not GonNa be enough for anybody right? There's no easy solution that. That must've been a tough blow for you and your cohorts. We know that there's going to be an enormous need for rennaissance once the elections start up again as people begin to realize that no, they're not going to be able to catch up on their rent, and they will potentially lose their housing as a result there will start really asking for the help with the rental assistance, and as right now there's just not going to be anywhere near enough to provide that need and also we don't have near enough in terms of shelter for people to go when they do lose their house and so You know people keep looking at me and saying so, what's the plan? Plan Right now there's no plan because there's no resources to meet it, and so we have to keep asking for the resources to get directed to the housing supports. As of a couple of times without housing stability, we can't back to normal. Our businesses can't get back to normal if their employees don't have stable housing, landlords are also businesses and they're struggling right now. And so one of the things that that blow really showed me was how we? We need to be talking more about. What it is when we say rental assistance is needed in this community I often get sort of PAG. I'm the person that talks about homelessness and I do talk a lot about homelessness because that's a, but that's what happens when we don't get the rest of it, right, it's it's a symptom of a larger issue, and we can prevent it. as a community, and so we really have to look at the folks that are living in. Housing, instability, and now as a result of COVID. We have a whole nother. Group of folks who have been very housing stable but because they lost income because they had a covert hit, them particularly hard haven't been able to get the types of assistance they need now. They may become housing unstable. And maybe even homeless and so. This is a new and different challenge that we have to kind of shift our attention to and Rally for the resources to meet the need in in the same way that we would if we knew that there were. There's a hurricane coming onshore, and our neighbors were living in glass houses like. A. We need boards to him up so that we minimize the damage and be. We've got to get people out of there and so we would rally the resources to that because we know that lives depend on it. It's the same thing right now. I think we have to lift our voice, says and ask for the resources and talk about the need, and it is an overwhelming need, and you know I don't. There is no other plant. We have to find the resources to meet the need because without it, we will have people on the streets. We will have people in our cars. We will have encampments Acadian. Had encampments before and bigger cities. New Orleans, Los Angeles you see stories about tent cities, etc, I don't want that for Acadian I don't want that for the people who would experience that I. Don't want that for our businesses that would be in those areas I don't think that that's our best option. For supporting our community I think it would be far better to keep people in their houses, and so yeah, we. We're GONNA just keep. A disappointing vote for me when this city Parish Council voted to move forward with that all going to businesses. Because I. don't like businesses I. Just thought that the the funding was fundamentally needed at the housing support level. Some money will be shifted some money from. Office of Community Development Hud grants. Though that we're going towards building, right, we'll housing. Yeah, so the Community Development Department did identify some additional funds. To towards rent or utility assistance those funds within commune involvement were already housing, dollars, and so some of them were Slated to be used, for Like housing rehabs to? When I talk about. Elderly or disabled living without plumbing or living, so they were going to. Replace, those are to help habitat affordable house for somebody, or you know those types of projects that they've. They've said that they're gonNA put essentially on hold and pushed down the road, a little bit and shift some dollars over to rent and utilities. We're still waiting to see how much that'll be. I'm grateful that they were willing to talk with us. About that I think we need that plus eight hundred fifty that they are gonna go to small businesses. I'm still not convinced that small business grants of three thousand really help very many small businesses I. DO WANNA see. Small businesses that are able to make use of those three thousand dollar on average grants Flourish I want that to be a sustaining factor for those businesses so now that it's earmarked for them. want us to see that the minority owned and small businesses that employ low income employees do get the funds and get those get used appropriately to help stabilize those small businesses that will be good for our economy. But we will need lots of other resources for housing supports. There's some state dollars as well that potentially that came through the cares act. That potentially could get utilized for rent assistance There's also a push for those to go to small businesses, so we'll see how. The legislators decided to do that. And I guess you'll be looking at other states around the country as you said looking at best practices, there's no place to go like everybody's everybody's struggling to figure out. What's the best approach for this in? How do we use it? Wisely there's never going to be enough resources for all the different needs, and so, what's the best what pushes us the furthest down the road to recovery as the question on everybody's mind and how how how somebody else doing it? What's a good plan to good practice? So Yeah? I spend a lot of time looking at what the possibilities are for that. And then asking people to consider that here. Do you sleep well at night? I think about all this. Rain stays. Turning all night long, yeah! Isn't? Lead five, no or go home. No stories of those who are calling assistance and who? We have in hotels right now and There's A. A NEAT little story about A little boy who was walking along the seashore who was picking up the? see stars that have gotten washed up onto the, and he's throwing them back into the ocean, and somebody else walks by and says Oh. There's too many never make a difference in you know as he throws one back, and he said well, it made a difference for that one. One by one by one a difference can be made, and so sometimes when I start to. Get, overwhelmed by the big picture and the enormity of it and the overwhelming -ness of We'll wow. There's about to be a a huge issue The night can zero back in and say okay well. What do we do right now for this one family? And and so. That's what we just take the next step on right les. How can people find out more about arch? Where would you send them our website as arch Acadian. Dot Org. Or Our facebook page, which is Argentina on facebook? WE TRY to post opportunities for people to advocate those resources that I was talking about. We also post opportunities for people to donate. Either financially or arches, also beginning to collect household items or furniture items, so that as people move back into housing there, some items for them to set up a basic household with so we don't want the clothes or the picture frames. But why does you dishes sheets towels furniture? and. So! There's opportunities for folks to. Help with the issue, large and small opportunities there, but the website or the facebook page all right and I'll post that on the show notes. Solely Rachel executive. Mispronouncing your namely richelle excuse me plays Namur from executive director of the Katie on a regional coalition on homelessness and Housing Thank you. For Shining the lights on an issue that so many of us, you know. We feel bad, but we don't know what to do. We don't know the extent of it. Thank you so much for taking time. I think that you define. Non Dual Alyssum. You look at if you know what I'm saying. Thank you on. Yeah, it's not about us from them. Or rich or poor. It's really just us. Yeah, Hannity so. Thank you for dedicating your life to this. There's very few of you in our community and I feel honored to have you here on. This show is a pleasure to come and visit with you. Thanks very much for joining us now I'd like to thank our listeners a hope that you will go to Argentina and look at the website and maybe figure out. If there's something you can do a plea, share this podcast with your friends. You can go to our website. Discover love, Dot Nand or even better, you can subscribe to discover Lafayette on your phone. You can get this on itunes or anywhere you get your podcast. I'd like to thank. Our generous fonts results so I. We have Iberia Bank which has been a great sponsor. Lafayette General Health. Rally marketing and of course Raider Solutions Jason Sikora will be mixing tapes. I WANNA. Thank them for their longtime support. Making the podcast possible on behalf discover Lafayette this John Swept Thank you.

Lafayette Katie Lafayette General Health Lee Richelle Acadian Regional Coalition on Hud Iberia Bank Raider Lafayette General Iberia Bank Dot Com Raider Solutions Dot Com New Orleans United States technical support facebook Louis Executive Director Federal Department of Hud Acadian Arches
Games of Acadiana Celebrates 19th Year

Discover Lafayette

28:47 min | 2 years ago

Games of Acadiana Celebrates 19th Year

"This is john swift and you're listening to discover lafayette's a podcast dedicated to the the people and rich culture of lafayette. The gateway to south louisiana we record in the offices of raider solutions a technology company that offers complete fleet of i._t. Solutions for businesses of all sizes raiders motto. Is you just want it to work. We understand if you're wondering if writer can help your business. Please visit raider solutions dot com. I'd like to thank iberia bank for its support founded in eighteen eighty. Seven iberia bank is is the largest bank based in louisiana headquartered in lafayette with three hundred twenty nine combined locations throughout the south they offer the resources of a national bank with with the personal touch of a community bank visit iberia bank dot com for more information and lastly. I want to express my gratitude for lafayette. General health as acadian is largest nonprofit community owned regional health system lafayette general health is committed to restoring maintaining and improving health in the communities communities it serves for more information visit lafayette general dot com today we welcome sherrie hernandez and richard steagall of miles per right cancer services to talk about the nineteenth annual games indicating anna on august seventeenth two thousand nineteen at the cajun down convention center. This is the signature fund razer of the organization and i can't wait to hear more about all the games this year and we'll also talk about the services provided by miles per out for individuals and families fighting surviving surviving and living with cancer since two thousand two miles per had cancer services has served over sixteen thousand families and a katy hannah one hundred percent of the funds raised staying acadian ah richard and sherry welcome to discover lafayette high. Thank you okay. I can't believe a a year has gone by since we spoke. It's time for the games again is owned by ya yes so every year i know it gets bigger and better and you've got new things going on lines. If you wanna talk about the games i and then we can talk about a lot of the services that you provide sure. It's gonna start first so this year is our <hes>. I can't believe i'm gonna they say our nineteen right annual games of katyusha so next year will be our twentieth anniversary and i can't believe it's been so many years that we've had this wonderful event going on <hes> and it really really has become a signature fundraiser for perot <hes> what a lot of people may not realize that the first games of acadian actually took place before we ever opened our doors in two thousand and two and so the event was so successful that we were able to open moss pat cancer services the very next year so i think that's a real special the story and i think that's what keeps games kate and close to our hearts and close to the hearts of our survivors and families in the community as well. I love that it includes everyone everyone in the community <hes> you don't have to pay to attend although of course you can donate but people can show up and there's all kinds of events going on richard on a you were talking earlier about the the day starts early we do so we begin the day actually with our triathlon and so there's about three hundred fifty hopefully closer to four hundred this year. Are you participating his painting no but my family does actually and so it begins with a swim and then it's got a bike ride and run and it's a great day to start you know that that saturday if you will and then we try to encourage everyone to come on over the gains of acadian along with their family members and what have you have a great a great time if you will <hes> <hes> you know we are so blessed to be acadian have close to one hundred sponsors that actually support us the local businesses and individuals you know on a variety of different ways and as we said you know it's free to the public for people to come amputate. Probably the most touching part of the day is the survivor walk and you know we open our ceremonies in and people come in their cancer. Survivors are fighting it at that time and <hes> we played this music and it's led led by you know last year. We had ron mcdonnell. You did a wonderful job and <hes> you know it's it's a very special moment to acknowledge and honor those that are fighting right right. That's right and you know just to reiterate again. You know this is a free event to the community and that is something that's very important into the pratt family and to our staff at miles per cancer services and it really has become a way for us to say thank you to the community <hes> and really just give them <hes> a day of fun for the whole family and giving thanks for supporting us and local survivors in the community. I know there's also wristband so that people can purchase as <hes> <hes> <hes> attribute there and so there's a few different ways that if families are individuals you know want to give back they're able to do so and so one of the things that we offer as called g._p._s. wristband and what that does kind of give you an exclusive <hes> inside look into a couple of very special game so each year era we choose about three to four games that are considered g._p._s. games and the only way to experience those games is through purchasing g._p._s. wristband so it's just a way to kind of <hes> you know give instead community and just a little something special and then of course all of the proceeds from that go directly back act two miles per hour at cancer services and to our clients in cancer patients in the community so can you talk about the games little people to all ages. That's right. Hey what kind of games can people expect so when we say we have something for the whole family. We've really mean we have something for the whole family a little taller we do so we have kind of taken over <hes> one of the the areas and now we call that are toddlers play area. We even have a stroller parking area where moms can come and park their strollers. We swap name tags with them so they can leave it and then and almost like valet parking but it's valet stroller parking for the moms and we have a variety of different games for toddlers and then of course as you move into the bigger venues and the cajun dome and main arena of the convention center. We have a ton of inflatable games. <hes> everything from something that we call monster monster spider jump where it's a few different trampolines that <hes> kids or adults can get harnessed into and jump around <hes> last year in this year two we have something called zombie laser tag which it's an inflatable laser tag game but this in principle is there to a normal laser tag so we do do have some really elaborate games of course one of the most are few of the most popular games are semaphore athletic games home run derby and of course our fastest pitch game it is sponsored by a raider solution so the team at raider has been really great and supporting us and <hes> supporting that game through their <hes> software and every year they're coming up with new ideas just to make it more fun for god the kids and families. Do you have a favorite game through the years that you've seen i have to you think and that's only because i've been i guess you could say a tester for these games and so one is wipe out and so that works traditionally just if you've ever seen gene wipe out on t._v. Or there's a rotating bar that goes around the middle of a ring and as it passes your platform you have to jump over it are in in some of the wipeout game shift to jump over under the bars or different sizes so that one's pretty interesting <hes> pretty fine and probably monster spider jumped to that one's really need an all ages can enjoy those games and it's just a way to kind of let your hair down and just have fun if you're an adult feel like you're a kid again and if your kid it gives the the chance to experience some really neat games that maybe you wouldn't have the chance to experience anywhere else so people show up all day. They don't have to get there early. They can just wondering korean what were the hours of the event so it goes from ten to four so we kick off our survivor walking opening ceremonies at ten o'clock clock and then at ten thirty we haven't n._f._l. Referee that blows our game was all and the official kickoff to games at ten thirty and then our kids can play games all day long until four o'clock. <hes> i know that day must be something i i don't know how you survive. The sits such a wonderful event but i know this takes a lot. It really does but you know it's been such a blessing for us at the community has opened their arms to us for this many years and allowed us to continue you know showing our support art and being able to just have a fun day for all of acadian so i think the thing that we want to do is say thank you joe bowen tears as we couldn't do it without them. There's at least a thousand volunteers. There's from all throughout the community. Come and people have been really the first games still participating tonight and so we have a very wonderful coordinator it works with their staff and <hes> you know we get a lot of these sponsors. They'll send people. It's a great morale-booster to give back to the community that can come out and work the games and and participate and have a lot of fun but really just people throughout the community come in and that's the way we execute. I think it's become a part of our culture. You know if you didn't didn't do it. People would really miss us. It's just a wonderful way to say. Thank you and also to raise awareness of all your services absolutely in our tagline for this event. <hes> is play with a purpose and so we kind of put that everywhere that we can and i think it really starts to resonate with families when they come out to have fun and play but when they really see the end result of what that is all about so play with a purpose that's kind of become you know or theme and our tag and it really has stuck with us around the years. I know that <hes> the center was set up because of the loss of the family and they understood you know better than probably anyone what it's like to lose whose child family member to cancer so even talk about some of the services that you've continued to offer and some of the things people may not be aware of what miles per at cancer services offers so we have twenty five services and programs that we offer to the community and some examples could be <hes>. You've got wigs and hats and scarves for those that may be losing their hair as they're going through treatments. We have prosthesis. We have perspectively items. We have <hes> attritional supplements. You know to help with your dietary needs <hes> we try to help people financially through transportation assistance to get it to you and from their their treatments and <hes> we have a variety of medical supplies medically equipment that we can also provide to those that are in need as well <hes>. We have some great support groups. <hes> we have a breast cancer support group. We have a journey for hope support group. That's focused on a family themselves that care for the caregiver support group again caregivers is so important when you're going through this journey of battling this disease if you will and we have a wonderful wellness center to you know where we encourage people from a nutrition standpoint and exercise aspect to come in and use our center for as long as they like with exercise pilates and yoga and what have you so a wide variety of things we do you know to help support news that are going through various stages of the cancer journey if you will right right and i think one of the things that is <hes> special about the services that we provide is they are all based on a family's personal experience so <hes> you know when local cancer patients come into our office. I think they can feel that and they can feel that you know all of the services that we provide and every decision that we make really <hes> comes from the heart and it comes from personal experience experience so <hes> there's not one single service that we offer that is you know obsolete or you really do have something for <hes> every every stage of the journey. I'm rather you know it's actual day of diagnosis. All the way to you know being cancer free for many many years so there really is <hes>. <hes> you know a service or a program they were able to off offer <hes> no matter you know what stage at the jeremy that an individual might be. Could you explain how it works if somebody body thinks they're interested in receiving services whether they have cancer. They're you know a survivor or a family member of similar. Do they walk in and maybe i have an appointment and the weather's appointment just walk walk can walk in and we'll have a service coordinator meet with you and learn about your situation so they just let you talk and you can share and this is where you're at now what we have their ten parishes that we support and what we look for people that are diagnosed with cancer their e either live in those ten parishes or being treated with an parishes and <hes> and again. There's no appointment needed. They just need to come and talk doc with us. Many of our our we call them clients instead of patients <hes> actually are referred to by their various doctors and colleges in what so that's a a lot of that's a lot of how the name <hes> gets out to those an income to financially how does not like if someone's coming to you for help <hes> would would kind of cost to incur so one of the really neat things about our services and everything that we offer whether it's on our program side of the situation or our services side. It's all free of charge always free of charge. There's never any costs associated with anything that we provide and not you know has been very very important to us as we continue offering services and programs that were able to continuously offer those free of charge to the community this why games aims of acadia is so important to you know for fundraising nearly fifty percent of our funds come from the events that we put on throughout the year and another thirty thirty or so percent just general donations from individuals and so that's that's how we provide all these services and programs free of charge and you were saying that last last year about thirty four hundred families were assisted. That's right a lot of people that's a lot of people in since we opened our doors in two thousand and two we have helped over sixteen thousand families and all of the funding from that has come directly from the community <hes> we are non government funded nonprofit which means so all of our funds literally literally come right here from our you know our families and our neighbors our friends and then go right back out into the community to help those same individuals some assuming every year you're helping more and more the people as word spreads sure about the services to actually cancer as much as we'd like to see it go away. It's not in so we always want to be there to support the community as much as we can about fifteen hundred every year we see about fifteen hundred new clients come to the center. <hes> you know lafayette parish is our largest parish perish in terms of of clients but also quite a number of people from saint landry and from iberia parish as well as well as all the way down the saint mary's voyles oils <hes> one of the services that we offer is our mobile miles and so we have an it's filled with supplies that will go to a number of local communities. He's go to crowley or go to ville platte or go to new iberia. What have you and meet the clients there to bring the the services needs meet. There needs there yeah. That's a big service people. That aren't well to begin with. The heart can't always get to laugh. We can take it to them. That's a help right right one more little thing that can help so if people wanna help like let's say i may not have cash but i wanna help like what. What types of volunteers do do you need or do. You like to see what were some. Things people can offer so we have a variety of volunteer opportunities throughout the year <hes> on a regular basis the task task could be anything from helping us fold our client calendars and getting those out to a variety of office tasks that we need them and it kinda changes year to year aaron month-to-month and then once we get into our events season where obviously always looking for volunteers either to help us <hes> prep foreign events dance got could be getting items together at our office <hes> setup you know the few days prior to an event or even actually volunteering and being enabled body at one of our events events and helping us work the event right right no we we always welcome and people come and volunteer like sherry says there's always a variety the things around the office that we need support with and we have a great group already man so it's always great to add to the group if you will in support in our efforts we we thank them because again we couldn't operate without their supply and it seems like there's such a network in our community like you know other associations. I'm sure that you partner with as your do you. Call them clients or your the people that you assist how how do you refer to the people that come in. We we call them. Clients considered <hes> what you would call a non medical nonprofit so we kind of use the term client patient interchangeable. You'll hear us refer to local cancer patients as as clients and we're referring to them in house because it seems like there's some associations out there other nonprofits that probably partner well with you as people well. We try to do a little bit with other nonprofits. We had family tree representatives in our office the other day. It's quite an awesome. Thanks yeah they do and <hes> we the thing thing we really work onto as our relationship with the local oncologists hospitals to ensure that our services and programs of meeting the needs of the patient <hes> we go and visit with him each year and we have a good dialogue. We share information about what's working well. How can we improve and it's all about doing what's right for the patient and and a great relationship with the right yeah a few years ago <hes> another richard mentioned mobile miles but we really tried to increase our outreach efforts <hes> a couple of years ago so now not only does an individual have to come directly to our office to maybe <hes> you know seek league answers are are get items for their cancer journey but we also have our service coordinators in the different college centers and working and the different <hes> radiology centers and they're able to meet with <hes> patients or clients when they're actually they're getting their chemotherapy or the radiation so they're not having to make a separate trip and has another appointment <hes> to come and get items that they might need right. That's true. That's been really <hes> a really neat service that we're able able to have them out in the community so we still have a variety of service coordinators <hes> in our office as well for all of our walk ins or patients that still want to set an appointment <hes> even even though we don't require that they're able to talk with them when they're already at a normal doctor's appointment anyway and so that just kind of takes one more thing list off their tasks is list and that's been <hes>. That's been really neat service. I'm sure that's relieved because friends. I've had that have you know had cancer. I know that they're they're exhausted. <hes> getting treatments or you just dealing with what's going to happen to have your service so meaningful and you know we mentioned that all the decision and then you know the the choices that we make really come directly from <hes> you know a family's personal experience and also other experiences from feedback that we've gotten from mm-hmm other cancer patients but that one of those items that comes directly from that list you know families that are you know unfortunately diagnosed with this terrible. Disease zeev have have enough to worry about enough on their plate. <hes> and doctors appointments and appointments is just one of those things so we really wanna make their journey as easy as possible and so you know if we can implement certain outreach programs are just certain tasks like that that can ease up their schedule and make their life a little easier than that's what you know we're always trying to do. I think the seed planted by the pret- family hanging debbie all those years ago has just really blossomed <hes> many people among your doctors and nurses and hospitals but they're so much more that you need beyond that and as much as we can as a center that was hanging debbie's vision was roussel fill that gap fill that need if you will for the patient client right and you know and going through their experience they realized there was <hes> there was a real void void in our community. I mean there really wasn't any one place that was offering services in programs to families that that they needed and so you know <hes> going through their personal journey they were able to kind of you know almost put together. <hes> a checklist of of things that you know other families whether it's you know pediatric cancer patient ordinance old cancer patient items and services that are really would be useful to to all families things they wish they had had it was interesting. Just santa totally the other day we had a couple of visitors from lake charles area and they wanted to learn more about what we do miles per hour and the services you provide how it got started because there's nothing like that nothing that exists in southwest louisiana area in terms of support and they would just overwhelmed you know my all the good things that are going on and they're trying to start up their their little. That's great yeah glad to hear that my husband's family's from like yes definitely that would it'd be so helpful people yeah well and you know we cover up ten parish area but even though you know we were out in a large service area you know it still seems to never never be enough. I mean as the numbers increase from year to year unfortunately and more <hes> individuals are diagnosed. There's always a need for more services and more program so we're we're happy to see that kind of expand and and hit more parishes and maybe you know we're not able to reach right right so we're here with jason. Sikora who i know is a big volunteer. He loves yes. Boy questioning birds yeah. I i love watching me birds so when when it comes back i'm going to bring my drone into film all day long. We love what you guys are doing and raider solutions is obviously a proud supporter of everything that you guys do <hes> we love games katie anna as i'm sure every the company that supports you guys do as well <hes> so anybody listening that supports miles per cancer services shut out u <hes> <hes> i. I have one question and then a few comments if somebody wants to donate money. How do they go about doing that. So we have a few different ways. They can do that obviously through a corporate donation either indirectly two miles parade or by sponsoring one of our <hes> signature fundraisers <hes> we also have a program in place called i'm in and that was is really set in place for individuals <hes> to understand that you really don't have to donate this. You know thousands and thousands of dollars to make an impact that every three dollar count so through our program whether it's a one dollar donation you know all the way up i mean it really can be personalized to an individual so they can make that online through our website at miles per dot org or they're able to mail in a checker form of payment or obviously any day stop by our office off and we can take care of that awesome all right so just a couple of comment. I highly recommend you volunteer. It's it's a ton of fun and it's like a family reunion every year but but you as coming in here and then we're all meet down there at the games and seal the different liaisons and the same same volunteers that we see year after year. It's it's a ton of fun and then obviously like all of the employees here love the fastest pitch enough so that so we developed a web server and software tax you keep track of everything and then push it to the web and every year we've done a list of updates that we want to do for the next year so we're gonna set it up here shortly in the next few days and to start working on it and we'll spend two weeks working on it and then you you bring it down and offer tech skills talk about what is the fastest a radar gun and and you come up and you throw anybody can do it. Anybody can do it if you're two years old or if you're seventy doesn't matter and the radar gun then grabs cbs. You're you're throws how fast they are and then we save all that information we push it to the web so you can see who the who the top scores are and so it's always like those twelve thirteen fourteen year olds who keep on coming back through every time they try to throw it fast and they go and they look at the scoreboard and see who's ahead and we do about almost thousand up people come through ours. It's nonstop and i know it starts. At ten. We start seeing kids at nine o'clock. They're lining on enough and even on officially open until ten. We do have a few that sneak in and they're ready to do so we we stood sitting up about seven seven thirty in the morning eight o'clock. Get going so we know that those nine o'clock are gonna come through and one of the scoreboard well indicating. Anna has become such you know where such a heavy softball off ball baseball area and so <hes> you know like jason said <hes> they come through and they just you know they're competitive against themselves but also against their friends. We've i've seen <hes> last year. We had <hes> an individual that in lieu of having a private birthday party games of acadian what's his birthday party and so he brought on his whole group i think there was probably maybe ten in the group and they were friends but also a baseball team and every time i pass by they were in line for fastest pige <hes> so so it's kind of become a celebration for more than than one reason. All the events are super fun even home derby right next to us with the kids that that's always packed quarterback pass. Yeah i saw the maze last year. That looked to be a lot of fun. Yeah the me so yeah just encourage everybody just come in for an hour or two and bring your family and you're gonna have a blast and then spaghetti yeah yeah you know and so this is another one of those ways that you can contribute to <hes> us as well and <hes> filling your tummy as as well so <hes> we always wanted to be able to offer nutritious option and so each year we sell a spaghetti dinners at games of acadian katie anna <hes> and so they used to be outside and so now we've we've been able to move inside so it's a way to just get off your feet a little bit setting the air conditioning kinda relaxed recoup up and then <hes> in a delicious lunch and then the proceeds from that obviously <hes> go back to miles peres which is another way to be able to contribute and then also enjoy enjoy a delicious lunch. I'm looking forward to it guys so thank you very much for coming in today again. Thank you for letting me comment. Demand has some questions so cheering hernandez and richard steagall of miles per hour cancer services. Thank you for what you do for our community and again for anybody anybody that wants to know more information that can go to malls piret dot ahrq my l. e. s. p. e. r. e. t. dot org. I want to thank you for joining discover lafayette and sharing your your wonderful story things. I want to thank all of our listeners. Also you can catch this episode and all of our episodes at discover cover lafayette dot net. You can subscribe and get this on delivered to your phone. Every friday. We released a new podcast. You can go through itunes. Google play anywhere you get podcast. Please share it with your friends so we can build our audience and keep the podcast going. Thanks to raiders solution's very bank. Lafayette general appreciate a sponsorships on behalf of discover lafayette. This is james vote.

cancer lafayette richard steagall coordinator sherry iberia bank sherrie hernandez louisiana partner lafayette high jason writer south louisiana john swift joe bowen miles peres Google raider
Lafayettes Annual Azalea Trail Taking Place March 9, 2019

Discover Lafayette

30:45 min | 2 years ago

Lafayettes Annual Azalea Trail Taking Place March 9, 2019

"The. This is John swift. And you're listening to discover Lafayette podcast, dedicated to the people and rich culture of Lafayette, the gateway to southeast Yana today's podcast is being recorded in the offices of writer solutions raider creates and maintains technical strategies for businesses of all sizes across the country as well as right here in Lafayette functioning is their complete IT department. Raiders motto is you just want it to work. We understand if you're wondering if writer can help your business, please visit Reiter solutions dot com. I'm very proud to welcome IB Bank. As discover Lafayette's premier sponsor founded in eighteen eighty seven Iberia Bank is the largest Bank based in Louisiana and is headquartered here in Lafayette with three hundred twenty nine combined locations throughout the south. They offer the resources of national Bank with the personal touch of a community. Bank Iberia banks supports educational, cultural and business development efforts. The make a difference in the many communities they serve including sponsoring this podcast. For more information, please visit Iberia Bank dot com. Today's gust is Denise long clo- of scenic Lafayette. Our topic today is Lafayette's as Zali trail. The Szalay trail originally began in nineteen thirty five when the chamber of commerce undertook a citywide beautification effort by the late nineteen thirties. The garden club was fully on board and they walked door to door. Encouraging local residents to plan Zale ios by nineteen forty. It's estimated that over forty thousand visitors turned the scenic Zali trail Lafayette Tur's described. The failures is one of the greatest floral treats in the south. In fact, a film entitled leisure Dan day Mouton gardens was released by commerce pictures out of New Orleans depicting the mini tourist who traveled down highway ninety to drive. The failure trail by nineteen eighty southern living named Lafayette's is alien trail. One of the top ten terse events in the south, however by the mid nineteen eighties urban sprawl and the demise of the. AC's who had ever seen the trail in its last days led to disinterest and some historic properties in his alias relaunched? The trail faded in memory fast forward to November twenty fourteen when scenic Lafayette was started in two thousand fifteen scenic Lafayette, adopted Zali trail revitalization as its first year initiative the next year in two thousand sixteen the city of Lafayette was awarded the Zali city designation by the zillion society of America. One of only sixteen in the US twenty sixteen was also the official kickoff of the Zali trail classic car caravan and this year's Zali trail bicycle and classic car. Cruise takes place on March ninth. We're all looking forward to this. Because the floral majesty of our local Zales is so lovely that many people call it a floral mortga gras so Denise land clo-, let's jump in and talk about his Alia's. Welcome to discover Lafayette, we met last year, you contacted me and your love of this project was so evident, would you? Tell me how you got involved with Zale you trail and first of all scenic, Lafayette sure couple years ago, a friend of mine shero parrot asked me to join scenic Lafayette, and she asked me to chair it. So I'm co-chairing with with Cheryl, I have a passion for laughing at speedy. Remember riding the trail as a young girl even participated in the trail runs in the nineties. So it's just a beautiful part of our community. Our landscape is a cultural asset to me. Right. Was your family were they gardeners or was this just something that you like or in a way when I was young mother put up a greenhouse in the backyard when I was a middle school and it developed an interest for growing flowers, and so right now my intro from my research, I saw that by the mid eighties. The Zeljko trail was starting to wane, but you're saying that there is still a. Like the Stiller awry arrive the jaycees onto the trail run. Okay. A raw nineties was a run, and we had t-shirts and all we ran up and down the trail. Where is the sale you trail, the trails twenty mile trail that traverses through the downtown district and the historic district of sterling grove through Jefferson street, Saint Mary Myrtle boulevards all the way down Saint Mary into Mujtaba Orden's, a call that grandma boulevard, really beautiful, and then from there, you can go down coolish boulevard through Girard, pork. Dr been Dell Gordon's and Greenberg green bar around west by Parkway. You know, I know June fall in a no she's been very active in all this. And from what she told me in the past. There was a real focus on the urban core and revitalization efforts. No, June has been very active in that outside of scenic. Lafayette is this where most of the Ezekiel or found in? In lafayette. Yes. The urban core of Saint Mary Myrtle place and Muto Gordon's have the oldest bushes in town. They're fifty to eighty years old. Some of them are almost fifteen feet tall. Right. So we've been managing those we've done a lot of work this past year, which we can talk about a little walk. Yeah. Yes. So did you grow up in that area was your by Fatima charge on Johnston street in the Whittington parks division? We have a boulevard, and we used to have lovely values there. Right, right. Let's go back to November twenty fourteen in early twenty fifteen when scenic Lafayette decided to adopt, the Zali trail revitalization was that the impetus behind seventy Fiat. It was the impetus behind it was a catalyst get them really going. So they've planted. They it over eight hundred zero is over the last few years, and then this past winter we plan to close to fifty they brought the trail back to its glory. Bob replanting, we've taken out some old rotten. Values. Just a few of them. We've also bring it onto the historic properties to town right now when you say, they are you talking about the core group of scenic Laffy was this money that was expended on their own or were there grants that you went for became co chair. I went out raise money coolish boulevard is our big project homeworking towards now. So we raise a lot of money to revitalize coolish boulevard this winter and raised money to revitalize the trail further. Right. And so I guess some of these other events that go along with it, including the Zeljka trail classic by what's bicycle and classic car. Cruise is that done day to raise money for you know, the continuing revitalization efforts it's really to raise awareness and for people to get out and enjoy the and to preserve this part of our cultural history. Right. So historic and it's a beautiful thing for our culture of life and tourism and our property our economy Valley, I. I can't wait. I know some years they seem to bloom earlier than others. But this year the big events going to be on March night, which is right after mardi gras which excuse me on March fifth this year nineteen thirties. The mayor ROY designated February twenty third is the official bloom season. And that's when they started mapping the trail and promoting it, right? And you have some other partners. Right. I know you've gotten support from Lafayette convention, visitors commission, and other groups locally. Can you talk about that? Yes. Lafayette, visitors has given us grant funding. The last few years we very appreciative of their support. We're also partner with the master Florida's planting at some of the historic properties in the fall, and they helped donate the value bushes. We're also doing fundraising, and then we can talk about the Chapola heritage group to what is that? News right before Christmas. I applied for two grants for the trout efforts one for the coolest boulevard project and one for I vent in the plantings. We would do and and they were awarded. So this trail will become part of a chaplain national heritage area. Right. So we're real proud of that we're working on bringing that to fruition. Now. Tell me about the salient self you had told me that this is eastern Asian of origin. How did the assail? Yup. Come to the the US. We we were we read in the historical writings that the missionaries brought the Ezekiel here from East Asia all the way through the Gulf Coast. Not just Lafayette they were Ryan into other areas. So what are some of the other? I know we're one of sixteen Zale yet cities. We have that designation. Where else do people go to to witness this? There are several and you can go and see the listing and some of the photography on the yoga society of America's website. Listed there. So could you give examples where people would travel to there's there's some there's one in. Huston is Colorado. The Blue Ridge Parkway, Alabama at king. I don't know which ones are exactly certified. But the list is on there where I saw as far north as Colorado. Yes, I was thinking this would be a warm weather type of planting city some of them grow. The city is in the woods and the forest. Yeah. Well, let's talk about what's coming up on March nine we're going to get this podcast out before. Then what type of festivities are planning is the annual classic car. Cruise in bike ride. It will be from one to four the bike riders round up at park Sanssouci and they start at one o'clock the classic cars cores nineteen seventy five or older will round up at the visitors center. The gateway at two they begin at to take. It's our twenty five dollars for a classic car and fifteen for bike riders twelve years old. Or are younger or free. You can ran a bike. If you don't have a by. We also let's great partnering with trail parting with trail, Mr. Scott shillings group. That's right. He's taken the lead on the registration. He's doing a great job. So you can ex we also gonna be giving prizes to the best vintage dressed Okara writer and bike rider of senior pictures on Facebook on your glad Zell, you trail Facebook page, charm, fun. Yeah. So is this like a parade in the old cars? Cruise is not a parade. It's just a cruise. We're depicting what they did historically in the forties and fifties people would caravan down to Lafayette and ride the trail, and hopefully this will raise quite a bit of money to to keep your work going. Sure, we're all volunteer based organization, right? Yes. Right. Well, tell me more what what are your plans for the future to you? It looks like this is really taking off. I mean, this is you've been doing this now for several years last year before I launched the website. I studied what other areas in the country doing for their floral attractions. So Washington DC with their cherry blossoms in Tyler Texas with the roses and mobile and a liked what they were doing their partner with historic properties. And a lot of our registered historic properties used to be beautified with values. So we brought that bag and we planted in front of the French house all the red Formosa's and Tober we planted in front of the Whittington on Johnston all the pinks Lafayette middle school. We planted all of rotties in front of the school. We also did an extensive planting on our gateway the visitor's center to welcome Peter people to the city of values. So all around the swamp pond area, you'll find clusters of Alia's right now, we're working on a million Ville Acadian village beautifying, those we just did a planning at Gerard part to create a walking tour around the conned. So that people can get down out of their cars and see all. Varieties of grow here in town. Right. So it a few years a hope to develop more photography to promote it across the country. When now that you've mentioned a laugh, isitor's and convention commission. I would like to thank been Berthelot his whole team for what they do not only promote discover Lafayette, but to help scenic Lafayette, and Zali trail they've been very supportive of this podcast, which helps us shine the light on involuntary like you Denise I wanna give them a shout. Definitely now. Besides alias. It seems that I read that you also want people to realize the other beautiful flowers that we have here such as camellias and other types of flowers and bushes and trees, would you talk about that? Yes. The last two weeks I got out and took some beautiful photography the camellias on the alumni center grounds in our university. Those historic formal gardens established by the in family, and they're really an asset. They're having a fundraiser. First time community coming up this weekend. But I would really like to capitalize on that. Also in the future. The communities are another great attraction along this rail. Denise. Where can people find out about all this? I know you've got a website AL dot or what about an overall big picture of where you know. Visitors could drive through increase on their own. If they come in during the hair we developed a new brochure this year, they're located at the visitor's center and also at don's downtown park. Sanssouci all of our postcards and brochures at all the welcome centers across the state as well. And our website has everything the brochures the trail map the website is really extensive. We have a five page website where you can see all of what we're talking about. Right. This is beautifully. Now. You put this together these Elliott trail. I remember we met you told me you learned how to put together promotional materials it so. Well, don't yes. I had a good time less. Learning. Obscene on this. You know, I meant to bring up the general Lafayette, the fuchsia Formosa Zale. Yeah. Which this was of the marquee parties. They they designated the fuchsia pink Formosa the general yet in honour marquee Lafayette as our city flower. Right. Yeah. So would you describe it for people? It's an evergreen Formosa fuchsia. Moreover, the hot pink side, it has a lavender hue to it. But it's just beautiful there. Those are the most prevalent along Saint Mary and grandma of kind of a light, lavender, pinkish what other callers, we have a popular varieties here. The fuchsia foremost that we have the red foremost, the G G gurgling whites the pride in mobile, which is a beautiful pink. The judge Solomon, which is more of a coral and the George Tabor's which are light pink. So for example on Saint Mary boulevard. There's a location called seven oaks, it's a home. That's the yard is full of Zale is they have a lot of g g. Gerbers there. Hateful. What is the season for Zales? Went win. Really? Are they at their their peak Zale you start blooming in late February through into March, depending on the weather and the rains they can last for a few weeks. It seems like some years they've they've peaked earlier is it because of the warmth her what what triggers example last year, we had a pristine spring with a little warm front in February. So they started blooming late February we had him for almost four weeks. Beautiful. I live off of mall, and I have to say I feel like I have one of the most beautiful drives in Lafayette, there's so many beautiful areas. But to drive down Wall Street's brag about it all the time. I was so happy to see that we were one of the main attractions on these failure dream of mine is to grow this onto our grand boulevard. So there is a boulevard page on our website. And I did a presentation to the city parish council that possibly one day we could plant values on our beautiful boulevards where we have oak trees. So where would that be? Oh, there's several around town. This Cajun Doma dreamed is to decorate Cajun dome with red and white Formosa's in university colors camelia boulevard. I'd love to make a kaleidoscope of colors. Oh, gosh, terling boulevard. I've already spoken with the school. They're they're interested in partnering so possibly the reds down terling boulevard. But this REU two billion. There's liberal larou-. Franz serve. Well to come to this around town. So get it that as alias your favorite plant like you're not into other a like a lot of a lot of plants, but I see this as a cultural attraction for laughing yet. Right. I got really excited when I saw the thousands that were going into Texas and mobile just to see their flowers, and I thought, wow, that's why we can bring this back for laugh yet now know back in the sixties if I remember my history right lady bird Johnson was big into beautification of the interstate system. It wasn't she a driving force behind a lot of the scenic Lafayette is an affiliate of scenic, America and seating America was spearheaded informed out of ladybird Johnson. And the highway deflation act. Yes, yeah. I've worked in the past Denise with different groups that have wanted to beautify our local I ten forty nine and I found out the hard way that it's it's more difficult than you think. Because even when you wanna have pretty I guess they're weeds, but they're beautiful fl. Hours that grow wild. It's hard to cut the grass around that. So they tend to get mowed down because of the expense of keeping the grass up. So you have to be careful where you let them beat a fixation efforts. Uh-huh. Do you have other? Let's talk about your board. I know you've got a strong group of people that you work with. And I've got a preliminary list. I don't want to leave anybody out on your board of directors. I saw it was Lynn Guidry. Stafford Burnett who's been involved from the beginning, June fall, Heather Warner Finley who's the neighbor also off of mall streets. Brandy Cavite, Cheryl, Pat, David bag now, another family that lives off a mall street, Cindy Wylie, and Robert Jared, and you must be are you on the board of no, I'm a member a member, but one of the spokes people that they send trail, and then you have a very big board of advisors to from on the community. So we would like to develop that more anybody that's interested in. Joining siegler, we'd love to have you with us and anybody that's interested in joining the trout committee. We would love to have you with us are contacted formation is on our website Zeljka trail dot org. What type of commitment? Do you look for in volume? The month scenic, Lafayette, volunteers for the trail, we do want volunteers right now, we did a lot of planting projects this winter, and we'd like to get some help and bucking water to the Gerard part. I wondered. Yeah. You keep them going. They're very hardy. They grow so easily here even with minimal water, but we're gonna water them and make sure they get well established this summer. We've invested a lot in this planting this winter. So we'll make sure they get stabbed. The parks department is a partner in saying the planning's have they've helped us with Jefferson street, and they're going to be doing some more work with parks. Yes, helped us with Gerard porn, the they did the parks department helped us with the jewel apart planting thank them with project front yard semi people. Wanna look at keeping our litter to a minimum if you define, but it really takes. Volunteer groups such as yours to make this be sustainable government. Just has limited resources doing a great job to the park's. Great and trees, and all, but it does take people that are interested in changing the landscape beauty up and project front yard. It's one of our partners. We're glad to be. They're also serving on keep Lafayette beautiful. Well, now, so I wanna bridge that these efforts between capable beautiful and scenic Lafayette, and advocate for people to keep our landscape. Beautiful. What does keep Lafayette beautiful day? I've been to the meetings. They do advocacy and do cleanup events. I'll learn more just got on board. And we haven't been to a meeting yet. So I'm looking to serving it can be frustrating when you get involved in cleanup efforts, and you see one day, it's clean the next day. Yeah. Trash magically reappears. But with the planning that you're doing I think it will encourage people to keep these areas we did door to door campaigns over the last three years to everyone along the trail residents businesses. It's developed a lot of fruit people are cleaning up their values. Planning Zale is they're really interested. We have a lot more people following us on scenic Lafayette. So I think just just in the work. We're doing it creates an interest in an appreciation for our landscape beauty. You know, thinking we have some Zale use. It got kind of overgrown wins the best time to to trim them. The best onto prune values is right after bloom time filler may you can cut out the dead Woody areas and trim. A little bit. Really if if you don't need to turn back too, much, just let them grow. They that wild. Look is. Okay. Yeah. They start butting in late summer for the next spring. Blooms the Camelias they start growing their buds after July. So you don't wanna don't wanna sorting July. Okay. Right. So we could trim back later. And they do. Well. Yeah. They're so beautiful. Yeah. Well, is there anything else you'd like to? I'm very passionate about the historic properties to. Well. Let's talk about the want to not only help bring those back to their beauty, but develop some time if it's traction for Lafayette and a few years with as in historic properties, the chaplain national heritage group, they're doing great work, and they have some work data me doing on scenic byways and so forth. They want to be part of the Zia trail traction to there's a group that's formed for the old Spanish trail highway ninety they've been doing a lot of that. So I'm going to be a part of that group to back in the fifties. There was an evangelist trail that the laugh yet jaycees has had developed also and that's on our website the brochure. There were a lot of Zales in the surrounding communities. So there's a lot of potential for all of this to be a great attraction. Right, right. Do you partner with Roxana? Aschner of with historical preservation with the city wanna bring back the cultural value trail signs as well. So the chaff library is going to help fund that right? That's great. Yeah. Well, as you can see Denise we're here with Jason Sikora. Thank you for taping us Jason. Of course. I know he's got some questions. Jason is a transplant the last few years from out west. So I don't know if you were familiar with this alias or I did a gig at the Zeljko festival in Alabama. And that's the only thing that I knew. Yeah. And the next day all her gear was covered in. It was the cure smelt. Great never smelt better. You talked about one of your products cleanup efforts is that is that just more cleaning up that also planting or is it kind of both out some historic bushes past winter that were over grown in volumes and doing it out of interest in keeping them and preserving them and also trying to get the neighborhoods involved in taking ownership of it back in the forties and fifties the neighbors along this trail would take care of the bushes. Now the words for example. There was a retired gentleman and Utah gardens who would trim the values and keep them clean vine. So we're trying to bring that interest back in the neighborhoods. The city has a lot to do. And if we kind of all pitch in a little bit. We keep them. Nice. So we cleaned up. Arboleda the entrance to our block, which is a historic Tudor neighborhood, very beautiful. L laughing. We cleaned up. Saint Mary the city has committed to helping us next year prune back Saint Mary little bit because they're very overgrown. But when you look at historic bushes that big you don't wanna take off more than a third of the Bush because they're really really big their Woody. Their stems are like, you know, barky so that will be working on that next spring. We cleaned up. A couple of areas. Okay. Excellent. And the reason I ask is I've let a couple raider solutions effort to actually trash pickups. We spent a day just walking up enough camelia picking it up. And and so I encourage everybody to do that. But also beautifying the city with plans. So you seem to know a lot about Zelaya's view is knowledge that you brought into this project. Or did you learn this along the way I've learned a lot just by reading an living in Lafayette, but let's talk about the families that actually did a lot to bring eighty to laugh yet in the thirties. The ends the. The. John's and the an already been del those families had landscape nurseries. So Bendel Gordon's was a formal nursery. They had a third three thousand values on that property at one time, and we have a historic postcards that used. They used to put out the camps and the visitor centers. So there was a big effort to beautify Lafayette these films. Did a great job. They knew what they would do, and they planted pine trees pine trees are great mulch for these plants they planted a lot of camellias Cyprus magnolias mockery drive and been no gardens is a magnolia drive that the whole street is lined up with my nose. Okay. So they they definitely put a lot of effort into beautifying. This urban part of Lafayette. They did a great job. And we're trying to bring that forward educate. Everyone just have a great appreciation to maintain. It. Madria him is to eventually break the trail up into districts break it into downtown historic district, a university oil center district and the develop. A Gordon's district where possibly we could have Gordon tours. So the Mujtaba Bordon's green Brar, bend L, corns and Whittington all these older neighborhoods in town would become a Gordon's district. So we could divide it up that way and then develop into a new brochure with pictures of our historic properties in our museums too. So you will has been a great partner with us. Also wanna mention them they planted a lot of the Elliot's along Saint Mary the Hilliard museum has a lot of value. So in a few years, it's really going to be very beautiful you work with the heart culture department. I don't but yes, I have. Yes, they have passed planted that. In fact, we can be planting the red and whites in front of Aaj alcohol, very soon, they planted some only alumni grounds. There crew did the planting at the French house in the Whittington for us and the master Gordon's partnered and provided the Bush, so it's been a great partnership all around great educational opportunity. Yeah, partnership that is the most beautiful thing about the coolish boulevard project. The last meeting we did with the city, we all came to the table and gave our resources. It was wonderful. The city's going to do a lot for us for Coolidge with possibly some of the handling of the paperwork in the sod. But we're still in that project right now getting bids on getting that done. Are they going to replace some of the existing bushes? We're going to keep the historic ones that are healthy. And we're gonna replant a lot more values she-she's, and we're gonna try to include some native plants down Coolidge. So I know we're talking heavy heavy Elliot today. And there is a beautiful flower. If you don't have one in your front yard, you should probably go plan when they're very easy to maintain. But what other flowers are if you wanna beautify your your property, would you recommend a side of his alias. There's so many that are easy to keep on the son of the shade. The impatience wonderful for shade. There's a lot of different values. You can do the low Gumbo. Pinks in bed. Encores the smaller values great for flowerbeds and for public streetscape. The Formosa's are the best because they're more heartier. They are so many. There's so many Camelias are great album encouraging more Camelias because I'd love to develop eventually one day another area where we could have a chameleon walking, Gordon where people could get down and see this. This is what states are doing cities are doing and bringing in a lot of tourism. Excellent. We've got the. We've got the great landscape backdrop already we've got great rich acid soil. Lots of rain perfect climate. Okay. It was it was a selfish question because we have a lot of business plans. And so a little bit, you know. But really are let's put the website one more time when is dot org. Excellent. Thank you very much for being here. I appreciate Jan. And let's go over that date again, the Zali trail bicycle and classic car. Cruise is coming up on March ninth in it's going to start cyclist start at one pm at park sunseed downtown in the car crews, it'll be vintage cars from nineteen seventy five in back starting at two pm at the laugh at visitor's center, and there's more on the website. And we wanna thank trail also locally Scott showing in his team for partnering with you as well as Elsie BC. So. Yeah. Well, Denise Len clo-, thank you so much for joining us today. It's always a pleasure to see you. 'cause you bring your heart and soul to what she do. And you're making our community a much more beautiful are beautiful natural organic landscape and environment is given to us our creator, and it enriches our humanity. And it's important that we keep our city clean. Despairingly said thank you so much and thanks to our listeners for tuning in to discover Lafayette this podcast in all of our shows can be found at discover Lafayette dot net or anywhere that you get your podcast, I tunes and other places on behalf of discover laughing at this Jan swift. Thank you.

Lafayette Zali trail Denise Len clo Zali trail Lafayette Tur partner Bendel Gordon Zale US America Zales Saint Mary Myrtle Gerard porn Formosa Zeljka trail Ezekiel writer Elliott trail Raiders John swift official
Kyle Bacon  Commercial Attorney With an Eye on Downtown and Improving the Business Climate

Discover Lafayette

43:12 min | 10 months ago

Kyle Bacon Commercial Attorney With an Eye on Downtown and Improving the Business Climate

"This is jammed swept and you're listening to discover Lafayette a podcast dedicated to the people and rich culture of Lafayette, the Gateway to South Louisiana. We usually tape in the offices of Raider today we're taping at my home. But I do want to thank Raider a hands on it service provider, that integrates. For Advanced Technical Support, effective communication options and cybersecurity raiders. Motto is you just wanted to work. We understand please visit Raider Solutions Dot Com for more information. I'd like to thank Berea, bank our premier sponsor, they support our community in. So many ways and their dynamic team is committed to serving the banking needs of clients in this region, and throughout the southeastern United States I bury bank offers the resources of National Bank with the personal touch of a community bank. Please visit Iberia Bank Dot. Com for more information. The generosity of Lafayette General. Health also makes this podcast possible Lafayette General has been a leader in telemedicine with the health anywhere APP. Your family can access quality urgent care at anytime without an appointment all from the comfort of your home. It's the waiting room redefined download the APP today at algae health anywhere dot com. Kyle Bacon a laughing at native and graduate of Lafayette High and you L.. Lafayette is our guest today Kyle graduated from Lsu Law School, and was on the Louisiana Law Review He serves his head of Jones Walkers Lafayette Office, which location is one of thirteen offices. The firm has across the country with over three hundred, sixty lawyers his Co. leader of the firm's commercial transactions team and his clients interests include oil and gas banking, real estate healthcare, and manufacturing. In. Twenty Seventeen Kyle was selected as top twenty under forty liter by the daily advertiser and he has participated in leadership, Louisiana and Leadership Lafayette. Active in Mardi gras crews his also active with one. Katie. Anna. The Community Foundation of a Katie ANA and his church. We on Kyle to join us today to discuss developments in downtown. Lafayette as well as today's commercial business clients and anything else you'd like to discuss kyle welcome to discover Fiat. Yeah thank you for being here What a day we're living in right? I mean, this is crazy times we're on zoom. So thank you for putting up again with Maya learning. Curve. Isn't unsettled time with Kobe pandemic going on a lot of. Changes in the world. Immunity and in the legal community, right? Well we met actually Anita bag know who is in charge of all things going on in downtown Lafayette encourage made meet with you and you've been kind enough to spend time with me. And you know Jones Walkers one got a reputation that's impeccable and you've got a big presence in downtown Lafayette in Chase Tower and I know that if we can talk first about Maybe how you ended up there and then we'll start talking about downtown in what you see but I want you to get in your home hometown background before we start that so. Sure. Yeah. So like you said, I was born and raised here in Lafayette. At. High Graduate Nineteen ninety-six go Monday lines. And You know came through the ranks ear in. That you will undergrad they went on to Lsu law school clerked for. A federal judge Alexandria for a year after law school and I came back to practice with the former Paredo ease law firm ear in Lafayette which was in in chase towers as you mentioned and there was A. Time. Where I left and actually commuted to baton. Rouge to award law firm in Baton Rouge. That's when I got into mostly the transactional side of the practice while I was gone firm the the the Jones Walker fire some a portion of the former red always law firm Longman Russo it was called at the time. And and then I came back to work with the same group that left back in two, thousand, two, thousand, eight. So, Win Jones Walker did that acquisition Jones walkers had a presence in Lafayette or probably thirty some years in fact Lafayette. Was the first office of Jones. Walker outside of New Orleans. And so it's it's had a presence here for thirty some odd years. In with that acquisition in two thousand nine I. Believe it was the footprint here grew sizably. And we moved into the the the offices ear. Theorin Chase Tower, and so we've been a I've been practicing out downtown Lafayette for. About, fifteen years or so now that you find, that's just a a perfect location for a law firm I worked in that building to when I moved here, a joined a large law firm and it's so convenient to the courthouse and. Everything you need. You know we have the State Board house at our back door. Rouse's second seat from window ear and itself is right around the corner, which is very convenient for the litigators. The. Downtown's got A. A A city feel to it, and so it's a, it's a fun place to come and work. I find that. I think downtown is sort of. The epicenter of our cultural identity here in Lafayette and a Katie Anna and it's find the. Bridge perhaps between. North Latvia and our Lafayette and and South Lafayette. It's a it's an important connector to the university. So downtown's a an important or Lafayette. Critical that we keep downtown rowing vibrant. And we had a decision a few years ago as our lease was coming up whether we wanted to stay here and we made a commitment to stay. I believe we have an office here of about seventeen lawyers. And believe we're the largest law firm law? Office. In downtown Lafayette like you said, we're on top four of the chase towers which a lot of folks will remember as the old you'll see declaw. Yeah. Right. I agree and I'm so glad you're on the show you're so articulate about us without having a vested interest. In running a group that promotes downtown Lafayette, but I think from me. You know civic work that I've done. I know that you've done when people visit a town, they want to go downtown they want people from out of town. They WanNa see what a downtown looks like and with all of our. Traditional festivals, all the things that we have down. Alive all the various Fun Things Ago on downtown really is I think the core of our town while South Africa has a lot of offers a lot of amenities to offer and a lot of good things. Downtown is really where it's ads in. As you said, it's the bridge between the northern part of our parish. And South Lafayette so. Had you guys decided to stay there? Yeah I think in one sense you can say it's the maybe it's the front porch of our community. Is everybody knows from all different parts of of Lafayette, everybody knows downtown. And the the cultural myths that you see here is is is sort of A. See I. Think a great reflection of our community it showcase no better than during festivals international, right where folks from all over our community. Absolutely. But on even all over the world come in converged downtown in it's A. I think the festival is a great great symbol of what downtown is all about. It's is the center of our community. It's a place where everybody's welcome. All walks of life all parts of our community and everyone feels comfortable. So. It's a good. It's it's important to our community that we have a place like that. All come together feel feel as one right I haven't heard that term front porch since I worked with Upper Lafayette. Economic Development Herbs Schilling with Schilling. Would use that in his his mantra was this is what people see. When they get off the interstate and come into town our front porch a good way to put it so. Visible. Where we all come together. And hang out right go into neighborhoods goals style front porches neighbor would come and visit on front porches and so in that respect to downtown all come together and. Have a community together as one call you went to Lafayette High did you live near downtown or where where does your family live? We live though were Couple of times. But live. Off of Johnston. Street. Near of near where little barrels is. We live on Normandy road there. Of, walk over from little their little barrels. and. So we live back. Between I. Guess we're at the time chameleon was not there right? Mean Chameleon. Let's say Brentwood in that area, right? So you've seen downtown. Grow and change. From being kind of dormant to a lot of bars, and now they activity seems to be more push for residential and family. Friendly. You know activities. So definitely, yeah. I remember our member you know when I was in college. Downtown was was very dormant like you said, I remember the first bar big Bar that opened while I was in school was a man Scott's I'll. I remember and that Rin fine establishment. Right as I was lazy. You will of. The college crowd started to shift from the old McKinley Street Strip to downtown and then you saw the bars open like you mentioned. And you're right we've. We've gotta get more residential down here we need a resurgence of corporate tenants. It was a time when every law firm. Just about every law firm lots of law firms were were based downtown. A lot of have left out to reveal ranch Holly Slough Missouri the different areas. Of It I think that if you look at some other communities, I i. think about Baton Rouge and how it's downtown has really blossomed in the last twenty years or so. There was a time when the Baton Rouge's downtown was was pretty doormat in in struggling itself. there were a lot of efforts that took place to. Rejuvenate Baton Rouge downtown but one that I that sticks out for me is that the The state government made a decision to. Concentrate state offices in downtown Baton Rouge area as opposed to other other parts of Baton Rouge and from our perspective. That's a lot of other developments that have followed since. I think you know our local government you obviously, we don't have state government offices like Baton Rouge does, but the our local government could play a role in that. Too to concentrate its facilities in downtown area, which creates a higher demand for restaurants higher to me and or a housing. Those sorts of things. The. You know our firm Jones Walker in Baton Rouge actually recently relocated from the I ten I twelve corridor back into downtown baton. Rouge and so you've seen all you've seen that. In that rude. Law. Firms are actually going back to downtown. And, it would be great if we could create that synergy here laugh yet. We've got some strong signs on the horizon who got this grocery store that recently opened up, which is which is important for the life of down. I know there's a couple of residential complexes that are in the works and so that's important but we need to get some. Stronger corporate clients timid as well. And one interesting thing I think is going to be how Kobe. Changes some of that You know nowadays, a lot of people are working from home rather than in your offices as it stands right now we've got. A firm wide. I think we have over half of our. Our personnel are still working remotely from home. We have the option to come into the office work from home. Over half of our, our personnel are still working from home. And one of the interesting things that's ain't going forward in the real estate world is going to be. A. What does does that is that does that have a lasting impact on the way people work to do people in it you to the work from home at even after Koby subsides and what does that do for the demand for office space? That something downtown as well as other areas of Lafayette are going to have to have to think about in considered do we see a drop in office space to me? Those are some some folks are projecting that. We may actually have see that. So there's challenges oppor plenty of opportunities for down down with its. Challenges that that we need to focus on For your talk has spurred several thoughts for me. First of all, my current podcast guests it's out right now. Eric Caen. He's a local entrepreneur. He was saying that he thinks the the real estate market is just can be so different. You Know People Really GonNa look at how much physical concrete do they need to occupy versus. Creativity as you're talking about. And interviewing David Kelly Kadaffi general. This week he was saying he wonders you know, are we going to move forward interacting in a different way more like they do in Asia wearing masks more being more aware of proximity to others. So there there's so many unknowns that we don't know but I do know that to government entities have invested in downtown Lafayette recently and I do want to mention that Kyle, the opportunity machine you know under Lafayette Economic Development Authority. Has got space downtown that's going to be refurbished and. Also it also Lafayette Convention Visitors Commission Been. Birth lots office. Has Got Space. So I think we're we've got some buy in from both private and public but how we move forward is going to be really interesting in the next year or two. Yeah I think those those developments like that are are are very important because they can. They can spur additional activity right those are the types of things that we need those sort of public sector. Organization to. BE AWARE OF INTO UTAH to. Unify places downtown where they. Rate Out of those. Folks will follow. We're still even though we're somewhat isolated now is in this. Mode. People are still with social. Social Beings. In person with you than sitting here, looking at the computer you know. What we like to be around other folks winds e places like these traditional developments rim ranch have done so well is because. People are just people an opportunity interact and socialize with each other and down on settings have similar similar characteristics and so you know there's plenty there's plenty of potential. Downtown, what are you seeing right now? Know you're in, are you in your office or you at home right man? Okay you're up. You can see everything you're got beautiful office space and Chase Tower What are you sing? Downtown is activity coming back like how what does it look like streets parking people. It somewhat seems to change by the week maybe even by the day depending on what's happening with the cases the pandemic. A will win things hit early on and it was It was state homeowners. There was a little leery. Nobody he was almost like a Sunday afternoon everyday Than towards. Probably. May or June. People started you know coming back with the restaurants were were not fully opening. It was hard to find a place, the most of them were still at takeout service level. And then it picked up more and then with despite that, we had last couple of weeks while people have I think stayed away in hunker down it's wider. I was hoping we could take this in person and we probably could have. Raider. A. Chris Writer and his company Raiders Solutions helped me with the show and they've set up a special place for me but with the. Latest Spike I just thought it'd be safest just to go ahead and Do it remotely just so on lot asking guests to do something, they're not comfortable with. But when I came to meet with you a couple months ago in your office, they checked my temperature. You know gave me a mask and we sat in a conference room across from each other if you remember with a lot of the seats taped off. Guys have been really. You've got it. You're taking care of that people distance. That's right. Our our firm was really Came out of the gate strong on all on that from the very beginning. We've got. Some strong ties to the healthcare community within our firm. And our firm has a long history of dealing with with Rice. Being home based in New Orleans being yes the and Katrina. Are Firm learned so much through being Orleans based farm we learned so much through between. and. Our our infrastructure was was set up. Largely because of what lessons learned from Katrina. was set up to be able to function remotely in so. When this pandemic hit. It was it was pretty seamless transition for us the biggest. Obstacle we have all the lawyers were were already. Set up to work remotely. The staff we had to get the staff secretaries paralegals. Among to get them set up with laptops, we have to get more remote access accounts licenses. But once we did that it was pretty it was pretty smooth sailing on the On the. On the precautions within the protocols within the office we also firm Kane out of the gate strong on that from the outset as well. And we had a questionnaire early on that, which is sorta now become commonplace but we had a very early on where there was a questionnaire that each one of us has to answer before we the office each morning. With regardless day every day. That's right. Anybody who comes into our office I had to that. Yeah. That's right. But her staff anybody that comes in has the answer. Would we get a text on our phone every morning an email as well and there's a nurse that takes temperature as we as we enter the office space. And so it's to check for things for exposure items and to make sure that we're not exhibiting any symptoms. We we have to stay away for a period of time. And you're right in the conference rooms, we have a conference room setup. We continued to service our clients that we haven't missed the beat with servicing our clients, and so that was important to us service our clients remotely, and sometimes it's gotTa be the Office for example, depositions intended to take place even while the courthouses were closed. Some of those guys postponed, but we still have some activity of in office meetings and depositions and such and so. Social distancing we take off. Chairs. And WE WE CREATED MAC we've created maximum capacity in rooms which are just a percentage of what we normally would have in a conference room setting. You're right. Every visitor is required to answer the same type of questionnaire to take your temperature and masks search strongly encouraged throughout all public areas in. We're seeing you. Pretty much everyone. These days are they're wearing masks throughout throughout the office when they're not in your own they're. Right I know for large firms like yours. You've got the resources to kind of think ahead and a lot of our legal community. Has Really had to get up to speed with technology. You know my husband's firm is small compared to yours, and they weren't really set up for remote working but they did that very quickly and thank goodness for a local it people that can help setup secure. Connections in and I think for some of the older crowd, the biggest concern was will will our workers be productive? You know because they're used to seeing people every day and? Younger workers can do this from oatley bit. It's been. It's been a transition for the legal Yeah it's been interesting to see how. It has unfolded in some folks. Still are not coming into the office attorneys included near working from home sometimes some of the some folks decided they liked working from home better, and so that'll be interesting to see you know how that like you mentioned earlier. How does that? I'm curious about golden cleaners like. How many suits are being dry cleaned these days. The on and ask him. Are Drycleaners I. Know They saw that downtown. Yeah, they were nervous for a while I think in conversations with our dry cleaner these it sounds like it's thick enough. Yeah. That's that's a good. Thing how this has affected different businesses differently. You know we've got some clients that are are really booming right now because of. Because of their industry and what they What they do Like I'll healthcare facilities and that that's a that's a mixed bag right here. Not Say healthcare healthcare facility. The wrong is really the wrong word. Healthcare support companies. Those are going going really well, you think about people that sale. Of Get laters or masks not. UP CLEANING COMPANIES PEOPLE. That, sanitize facilities that's right. some some clients like that are doing really well, obviously. Other. CLIENTS ARE NOT walling gas energy sector stake in a real big really especially around here. and. So it sort of a sort of a mixed bag and it'll be interesting to see how it shakes out long-term right kyle I want to follow up on that thought but I, I'd like to pause for discover Lafayette's past, which is something we do in every episode, it's brought to us by rally marketing a full service digital marketing agency that can assist people with marketing information content development search engine optimization in how to use social media as a money maker for businesses. Our friends at Raleigh marketing are. There to help you navigate the matinees excuse me of all the latest ways to market online effectively for more information, please visit rally marketing, Dot Com, and now the moment, and I want to focus on the history of the Lafayette Parish Bar Association which were all members of in one, thousand, nine, hundred, sixty nine would have been a loosely knit informal group of attorneys formalized into Lafayette Parish Bar Association by the following a charter signed by all eighty three lawyers who practised in the parish. Can you imagine eighty-three? Lawyers. In five years, the membership almost doubled to one hundred, fifty, one members. The first record of formal volunteerism for the indigent of Lafayette Parish was the establishment of the pro bono. Committee. Nineteen eighty, five by nineteen, Eighty, seven with the assistance of Acadian legal services the Lafayette. Valentin lawyers. Program became a reality in the Lafayette. Bar Hard its first staff member. The Association was first located in the old Moss Pharmacy Building, which was downtown at the corner of Jefferson and vermillion right by your office. In January nineteen ninety-one, the association moved to larger headquarters in what was then FNB. Towers now chase tower a space suitable to accommodate the law library for local lawyers in three staff members in two thousand seven Lafayette Parish Bar Foundation. Purchased and began renovations of its current building on Johnson. Street across from Albertsons this facility today contains six conference rooms the Law Library and is open to the public who might be in need of legal forms when they represent themselves in divorce matters or other common legal matters. So that's a brief history that's been of fifty one years of growth and you know now I don't even know how many lawyers we have in. Lafayette parish more than one, hundred, fifty, one absolutely. Guessing to say. But it several mini mini we yeah. Yeah. My husband is president of the bar. Foundation. No, they're honoring. A lot of people coming up we're waiting having to put off events where we normally honored the the stars in our community. But the bar does a lot of good for community and people give a lawyers give back a lot of volunteer hours. That's what in need radar is a great. It's a great organization. And had the pleasure of serving on the board of Directors Association for a few years. While I was chair of commercial transactions session and and you're right lawyers a lot times can get a bad rap in. Day. But there's a lot of Bona work that lawyers do a lot of good service service oriented work in Bar Associations on the front on the front line with regard to that. I remember when they were here when the or association here in our building as a new lawyer. Probably, one of their free users of the library there. So it's great. They got me a lot down there and it was quiet. So you could go get out of your office and just get some work done. You know get some research done. Right. If we can go back to what you were talking about before that pause What what are you seeing I know that you've been involved in things I know you guys do national and international work. What's The the word abouts? Commercial entities you were saying earlier that some are doing well depending on the sector there in oil and gas so well. Healthcare support. May Better. But what what is the word and maybe how it's affected the legal community to if you can touch on some of that I? Mean I think one of the. One of the biggest impacts than we saw real very quickly was merger and acquisition work. Came to almost a screeching halt. Because there was so much nervousness about what uncertainty about what the future would hold Indiana and that's a big part of what you do. Right you're that's right the focus. And so. A lot of that a lot of that slowed down. In in the from the legal side of things sometimes, it generates other activity though. For example bankruptcies are we're going up which is not A. Great thing. We'd rather see. Companies grow and prosper. But. There is a need for legal services. When it comes to those types matters, you help them were cal like an advance to their creditors. You help them organize a proposal in many cases I'm sure. Because they don't want to totally default they wanNA work out something out arrangements and then there's all. Advising and representing through the bankruptcy process. There you know in this wasn't. As folks around the Kadian area will aware. We were already in sort of A. Downturn in in oil and gas sector. So it wasn't a new thing. But what we you know one of the things that you see is, for example, when companies are in distress, they look for other mechanisms, the alternative financing mechanisms. So you, it may be collateralized assets. To generate a revenue stream. That maybe weren't collateralized previously. That can generate. You know legal that generates legal legal work as well. You know got some interesting development of late whereas an oil and gas service company. And they sold last year. And then this pandemic hit and everything sort of dried up. There actually in the process of buying their company back. From the buyer, right? Yeah. To save it probably to yet. Right? Right and so it basically didn't materialize as. As promising didn't materialize as well as as the fire thought and so the parties have reached an agreement to. Basically, repurchased the division from the buyer. So those types of things happen are happening. And but I do think Louisiana's going to have a challenge going forward in the energy sector we've got and these things were in place before right before the pandemic But. We've got a with that sort of A. Some issues in a maybe a a liability climate that a lot of energy companies are. Are Looking To. Other jurisdictions in so that's something Louisiana Lafayette hard because of. Because of our our emphasis on on oil and gas. That's something we need to think about as a community and as economic. Developers we need to think through those issues. It's a challenge going forward So we. You know it's it's sort of a mixed bag when it comes to with the clients are experiencing right now. Through the pandemic, clearly a lot of folks are. Really hitting them hard. Bars and restaurants and folks like that are probably on the forefront. One of the things we saw early on. Is Landlord tenant issues. That's going to continue to be an issue that's about to hit the FAN A. Late August it's GonNa hit a Sam. And these are I mean residential is going to be. A residential leases is going to be a problem but commercial leases are also proud. We've had several clients that have. Looked into getting. Out. of of their. Lease. Arrangements renegotiating. Arrange. The long of the pandemic goes I think more that's going to become an issue and there's been. Were able to help a lot of clients. Get you know. Postponements in forbearance agreements with landlords and things like that. And nothing Tom will tell as to whether that. That is the whether that's the in game with regard to negotiation those types of things it clients her lucky to have your legal counsel on certain that a lot of people that don't have legal counsel that are defaulting on obligations. They're afraid to talk to their creditors and that's the worst thing they can do. Stay silent you know. In not try to work out something. Every in every situation is different A. Lot of people get locked by fear as well. In one of the things that. folks. Can Take Comfort and is that there's legal processes in place. To prevent is particularly in Louisiana that. Generally prevent someone from getting quote kicked out to the street over. And so I think you're right I think it's better to deal with the situation and figure out a solution. Than to sort of ignore it and then all of a sudden. Have a avenue. On your hands are or something like that. Yeah you've defaulted and. Don't have a leg to stand on. Who? Young represent big companies do you to regular people walk in off the street looking for advice or what's your typical client? Our typical client is. We would do represent. A lot of big companies, but we also represent mid companies. We're we're we're commercial arms aware business defense firm so You know ninety percent of our client base. Is Is. Businesses. and. So. Some of those are mid-size size. Some of them are large particularly in the Lafayette market. We tend to represent a lot of mid size companies as bill. What does that mean Kyle? What is mid size like what? What? Revenue Stream or whatever which. I don't have a specific dollar morning only. I guess I would distinguish it from saint mom and pop right so we might get a husband and wife Dale as opposed to maybe A. Five employee company. That's that's right and and some of our clients wing services. Right and some are represents for specific issues. Right? They may have General Council. An attorney that they use on certain on just a regular ordinary things but there may be coming issue that pops up where they need a specific. Resource for example, I've got one client that needed Texas Council because a contract dispute related to it was a Texas governing law issue, and so we were able to pull in our partners from our Texas all. I've got A. Client as well that Is at Texas Council, but is interested in filing a lean in Louisiana so they needed our resources. For that, we've got strong intellectual property group here in Lafayette. got a strong labor and Employment Group within the firm. got. Strong healthcare. Group. So. You know not not every low no lawyer knows everything, right so. Yeah. That true right and so a lot of sometimes we get clients that will help on specific type issues. Subject matter type issues depending on what your needs are and what our resources we have. No. We affirm has just got such a great reputation and I wanted to shout out one of our oldest friends is Michael Lemoyne who's in your office? John my husband lived with Michael and We just love him to death Gary Russo McDonnell Douglas Than you've got a great group of solid people there and I'm not even there's so many that I don't know that I wanted to shout out to those names I know and I'd like to transition before we. Close out the interview I know that you have a beautiful family. And you're active in your church and you're also active in Mardi Gras in a lot of things in our community If. You touch on some of that. I was surprised at how many things you do with Mardi Gras you're. You're active with them. Right we will bone karch. Orense. We like Mardi Gras at. Kids are in a crew like you said, we're wiping iron prove Bonaparte group Gabriel. Recently appointed to the Board for the group own our good. So it's a it's a fun time for our family. We enjoy it. It's one of the is one of the unique cultural aspects of of Lafayette indicate an so. We always I always enjoyed more to growing up but we my wife and I also sort of made a decision and early on when we were having when our kids were young. That, we were going to sort of you know, let them experience that. Ultra says well our. Theory is if we can get you can. You can make a Gumbo anywhere around the world. You can listen to Cajun music in where you go. Which Export Mardi Gras so That's to. If they want if if they love Mardi Gras, they'll have to come back at least. If they if they move away art, maybe that'll get them to stay so. We enjoy it. But. You're right have been involved with the president of the Yale Alumni Association and that was a great experience honor yeah. It was a fun fun experience with great great board over there in a great group of a great staff. Now. Some some exciting things to work on. been. Involved in in one like you mention urban. Revitalization Committee right there will not. Community. and. So that's that's that committee is about focusing a lot of what we're talking about today, which is. Out of revived revitalize urban core of our. Of Our community. Because it does take nurturing. He doesn't have. It may not happen naturally takes some concerted efforts, and so we've been we've been time through issues affecting. The downtown area and in other urban areas like university area and things like that. So but we Have Been I'm only executive. Advisory Committee for the Business at U. L.. At the fun be part of and. Nettie right for the The new Dean we finished search. On the search committee for the for the new dean. We just wrapped that congratulations on that. So. and. You're right. We're family and are were active in our in our church bears the pious. SCAPIN CHURCH URINETOWN mean. All these things are quality life things our community for our for our family, and so we we try to stay engaged in. It as much. As we can write over. So blessed to have you in our community and. I'm honored that I'm getting to know you Kyle I mean I knew you were but I don't think we'd ever really interacted and You kind of touch a lot of our community through your work both as a lawyer and volunteer. Civically engaged. So thank you for all you do and I. Hope that. People, that don't know you will take this interview and see that. All of us have something to offer to make our community grades and I. I really believe Lafayette Parish in our region is wonderful place to live and. And you've contributed greatly to that. So thank you for taking time today I. Know You say you and I want to thank all of our listeners please share this interview. You can do a couple of things You can go to discover Lafayette Dot. Net. You could find Kyle's interview and the web nodes, and you can share that with friends are you can even go to your podcast and please subscribe you just have to type in discover Lafayette in a new podcast we delivered every week to your phone. There's no charge for this. This is made possible through the generosity of our sponsors. Iberia Bang. Lafayette General held. Raider and rally marketing. I want to thank all of them from making the podcast possible. On. Behalf of Discovery Lafayette's this is John. Swift. Thank you.

Lafayette Lafayette Kyle Bacon Lafayette Lafayette General Baton Rouge Lafayette Parish Raider Louisiana Jones Walkers Lafayette Office South Lafayette Lafayette High Jones Walker Upper Lafayette Mardi Gras Lafayette High Rouge chase towers
Gerald Gerami  Rug Gallery by Geramis

Discover Lafayette

40:34 min | 1 year ago

Gerald Gerami Rug Gallery by Geramis

"This is jammed swept and you're listening to discover. Lafayette a podcast dedicated to the people and rich culture of Lafayette. The Gateway to South Louisiana will usually tape in the offices of Raider today. We're taping at my home but I do want to thank Raider hands on. It service provider that integrates all of your needs for advanced technical support. Effective communication options and cybersecurity raiders motto. Is You just wanted to work? We understand please visit Raider Solutions Dot Com for more information. I'd like to thank Berea. Bank our premier sponsor. They support our community in so many ways and their dynamic team is committed to serving the banking needs of clients in this region and throughout the southeastern United States. I Bury Bank offers the resources of National Bank with the personal touch of a community bank. Please visit Iberia Bank Dot Com for more information the generosity of Lafayette General Health. Also makes this podcast possible. Lafayette General has been a leader in telemedicine with the health anywhere APP. Your family can access quality urgent care at anytime without an appointment. All from the comfort of your home. It's the waiting room redefined. Download the APP today at algae health anywhere dot com our guest. Today is Gerald Jeremy Owner of Rug Gallery by Jeremy's Gerald has followed in the footsteps of his grandfather. Joseph Patrick Jeremy who opened his first retail establishment in one thousand nine hundred twenty the original. Ramey business started as a furniture market evolved into a flooring store in is still open today on Jefferson Street. In downtown Gerald's father took over operations of Jeremy's in the late nineteen sixties and. He brought his four sons into the business in one thousand nine hundred ninety eight Gerald Junior opened. Rug Gallery. Baiju Raimi's to meet a needed niche in Lafayette's retail market Gerald and Carla. Jeremy are well known in our community interactive in monographs celebrations. And we're here today to celebrate local business and the tenacity it takes to be part of a third generation. Business Line Gerald Jeremy well come to discover Lafayette. Jim Thanks for having me here pleasure. You know every time I get to do a podcast. Learn more about our community and I really knew your name. I knew about the juramy stores but I didn't know your whole history and I think given the shutdown that were starting to come out of. It's really a great time to celebrate local businesses such as yours because you know that your family has gone through a lot of hard times given the nine thousand nine hundred twenty eight when your your grandfather opened up so if you could give us your background and talk about whatever you want to about the store but I just wanted to celebrate what you've done in Your Business Success over the past twenty two years. We'll thank you John. I am proud of families here. Did you laugh yet? It goes back a long way like many families that settled here back when but you mentioned my grandfather. He did move when he was a young boy from Italy. His family settled mainly around the generate area and he went off to fight in world war and came back. I think in late nineteen eighteen or so Met My grandmother settled. Lafayette and they started a furniture business. I was told he liked to make furniture. And he got involved in like Antique Furniture State Sales. And that's kind of where it started in nineteen twenty. He built the original store which was on Jefferson Boulevard at the time was in the center of Lafayette. If you will. But and then evolved. They built a second store and he went on doing furniture into flooring and all kinds of home. Basically A full-blown merchants store where you could just about anything for your home right. You know I did say Jefferson Straight and the introduction. I apologize because there's a big difference. Jefferson Boulevard is over by Orange Street. I think we're your family on street toward the street area by the point by people. Twos PONTIAC point. Yeah but that was the where the heart of Lafayette Minute moved over to. The railroad tracks is coming to the dividing line of Boulevard and Jefferson Street and at one time Before I remember there was actually a true boulevard there from what I understand right at the original store where the store is still standing. Our FAMILY STILL OPERATES. Jeremy's flooring honor that and although I'm not directly involved in the DAY-TO-DAY OPERATIONS THERE. My father's retard Two Brothers Greg and Gary Run that now and I wasn't originally involved in the family flooring business much went on to do other things before I got into the rug gallery. Being from Viet grew up here went to high school went to attend you. Lafayette or USSL. Back in seventy people. It was a fun time and then moved on a kind of follow in my grandfather. My mother's father's footprint. I guess he was in banking all his life and he worked what was first National Bank and Lafayette for many many years. Most of his adult career name was Dudley. Forman Okay L. D. Four minutes how he was known to most people and so he had a big influence on me growing up as a kid. I never knew my father's my grandfather. My father's side he he died actually in the in nineteen. I think it was fifty seven before I was actually born so I was fortunate that I had my grandfather on my mother's side to to to spend most of my years growing up and so him being in banking Khanna influenced me. I was the oldest in my family. I am the oldest family of three younger brothers and two sisters. So I don't know I had an interesting banking and kind of went into that for quite a few years and in the first National Bank and in the late eighties. I don't know I had a turn in my career. I had a good friend of mine. Who's still inaudible bids automobile bins today? Don Hard with bonus motors. We were college buddies. And so forth and He convinced me. I needed to go into the car business. Now where did he have his own business back down or early stages of courtesy? That's an hiring you guys. Yes groom that tremendously honestly I went to work with him. Originally appaloosas at one of the stores there then came to Lafayette and got into of course sales work your way up and did some management in dealership there a couple of stores in Lafayette. And I did that for probably think. Ten or twelve years and then. I don't know My Dad retired from the side. My two brothers took over the foreign business and kind of had an interesting going back in that direction and we had some conversations. We felt that there was a need. Lafayette since the market was going more and more to hard surface flooring and there wasn't much in that field here my dad had a few rugs in the old flooring store but so we decided expand on that and put together the concept and Nineteen Ninety Eight Opened up what is now gallery by Juramy. Right you've ever. Did you ever really think you would do that? Full circle you know you know not really wasn't it wasn't in a long term plan just can't evolved timing was right It just kind of fell into place did some research on it and felt it was would would be a good fit to tie into what we did in the flooring business for so many years and although it's two separate businesses we do complement each other. We refer customers to our flooring side in the flooring side refers customer star in and actually a lot of our client bases is the same that and probably generations have declined base to stick. We do when we open rug gallery. Obviously we tied in the family. Name Gallery by Raimi's we felt like did that was definitely advantageous. People recognizing My family's business who'd been Lafayette for so many years and the people who grew up in the family's from Lafayette everybody. They said. Well everybody knows everybody is. If you're from here I guess that's really. That might be true. Speaking of that I want you to get in a little word for Karla because I remember when I met you guys. I think I had asked you know when you first Matt and your face lit up. This was years ago. And you probably don't remember telling me that your face lit up when you talked about your beautiful wive. Well you on the spot here. No not really I love talking about Carlisle Mean. We did we met. I was still back in the banking business at the time and We met I knew her family. Her Dad was at the time actually The Standing Sheriff in Lafayette Parish and we met and dated and fell in love obviously went on to get married and we got married in nine hundred six and white most marriages. We've had our good times and bad talbot most ever been very very good and I say daily. We've got two kids who are offering their own and now and although She had a career she retard years ago from the sheriff's Department and She's not involved with me Working fulltime day to day but she does Come in and help out. She helps in some of the buying decisions. I get her input because I value her opinion and women's opinion. 'cause that's that's the basis of our clientele is mostly women. So she has good taste in that respect and she she does help me out lot in day to day stuff the business. Well you must have really become a rug expert over the past twenty two years. I know you're stores doubled in size since the one that was at time. Plazas did when we first located We were in plaza. Shopping Center and Had roughly if I remember right auto twenty eight hundred square feet and we stayed there for about fifteen years. We rented there from Wide Andrew's family that owns that shopping center and an opportunity presented itself Back in two thousand fourteen and we had outgrown our space and we decided to move to our location and Participate in building the building that we're in now and And it's it's worked out very well. It's been a great location. One four from where we were before and we not quite but almost doubled our size our scope of footprint of the store and then when we moved there although our specialty is area rugs and a lot of people think that you know have a different definition of area rugs but we cover the whole gamut from what people traditionally think of an oriental rug. A nicer quality handmade product. But we also have you know all the way into machine loomed drugs or synthetic yarns as well as the upper end quality wools. We bought wine for Taylor. I remember my older daughter. We bought this. Shag rug that I just love. It's like you know I don't know if I buy seven or something. It's like a Green Shag. It was so cool and I didn't realize you had all that and we went in there pictured very we'd like to feel like we have something for everybody's taste and everybody's budget and we feel like if we can get you to come in our store if you in the market for for an area rug that there will find something for you Will will help you through the process of you not even familiar with area. Rugs we are staff can educate you. And the way I roger displayed most of them on racks that are hanging and easily to open and you can view on your own. Are we can assist you in the process and walk you through it and give you some help and guidance in choosing the The Right Rug. That might work for you and your home or office. You help with like people don't know what what get for their decor absolutely. We encourage people to come in with their fabrics or colors or pillow from from your furniture Pictures of the room. And you know everybody's and budget is a little different. So we kind of get. Some ideas and feedback from the customer will lead a point in the right direction are literally walking through the process and and help them choose the rug and what they make a choice before they would actually make a decision to purchase the rug. We offer them the opportunity to take the rug home or maybe more than one choice and they're not sure and until you see it in your home and get a feel for what it's going to do for your decor We let you take it out on approval. Yes sometimes you just don't know until you get it around your own stuff. You know like George Carlin with say it needs to be around your stuff and I would say more times than not. People don't know for sure until they take it home so and I'd say ninety percent of the time people go through that process take it to their home late in the room and then come back and figure out which one's best for them. We like to call it our. Try it before you buy guaranteed right but I mean that's really a good service. You make yourself different by doing that because I'm sure a lot of vendors would not do that well I think most people When you're buying a product like that with spending a couple hundred dollars or maybe a couple thousand dollars because it can vary by each person's taste and whatnot but you it's you have to see it or touch it or feel it. I know some people like to shop on the Internet. But then you can't really see the texture you can't tell until you maybe get it and what if it's not right you've got to go through the hassle of maybe sending it back. We take that hassle and make your shopping experience worry free and at the same time. You're shopping local. You know you're dealing with local people and I think people have vested interest to do that in Lafayette especially these days. But we've always felt that that they've liked to deal local anyway and I think so. Yeah and you overcome. I guess sometimes people are just non-committed and they WANNA make sure. They're comfortable in their decision. And we help to make you do that. We're not a high pressure business. We WanNA earn Your Business of course but we let you go to your own pace. Make your decision and when you say we and now you have a store manager. Is that right. Is that The manager of Monica Cable. Those people have been in matter She's been with me pretty much since we opened the slower. Twenty two years ago so And She Like a lucky. She is definitely like family and has some great employs over the years that helped us build our business to where it is today Feel like we've been very fortunate and the community of Lafayette and around the surrounding Acadian. Area has been very supportive. So we'RE BLESSED IN THAT WILLIAM. Hope that they'll continue to support us today and as in the future. So let me tell you. That's why we're here and I I wanted break and I'd like to get into more You know the market today not just with the Cova nineteen but just market conditions but if we can take a break just for a moment I'd like to pause for discover Lafayette's past which is sponsored by rally. Marketing Rally is a full service digital marketing agency that can assist you with marketing automation content development and strategy on how to use social media to turn into a moneymaker for your business. Our friends at Raleigh marketing are there to help you navigate the maze of all the latest ways to market effectively for more information. Please visit rally marketing dot com and now the moment the city of Lafayette in its leaders. Have a strong history of stepping up to provide great technological services to its residents in fact. Lafayette utilities system was proposed by city leaders after the world watched. Aw as the 1893. Chicago's World Fair was lit up by Trinity. So with the desire for pressurized water and the ability to light it's towns and streets. The public started demanding. Its own electrical system. By 1897 Lafayette Utilities System was operational with the opening of its grant street. Plant THE ABILITY TO OFFER ELECTRICITY PLACED. Lafayette in the lead position to be selected as the side for the Southwest Louisiana Industrial Institute. Which we now know is you L. F. It opened its doors in nineteen o one with one hundred students and it set lafayette apart from neighboring cities as electricity attracted commerce opportunity and growth. Today you else. Campus covers fifteen hundred acres and enrollment in fall. Twenty nineteen was over nineteen thousand students so I wanted to share that because that was right before your grandfather moved here so when he when he ended up Lafayette it was still a very small town but it was on the path to grow Gerald as compared to Crowley Appaloosas all surrounding towns were actually bigger than Lafayette but with electricity and the university. His timing was perfect and he was appear with. Maurice and all these other leaders. You know that really city will it? Yeah in fact. I'm thinking it's funny that you mention Maurice Hyman Mob Father tells me that he was very instrumental in helping my grandfather. Back in the day thing They met became friends through. I guess is what he did and at one point. Dad was telling me That Maurice Hyman helped was very instrumental in helping him. Acquire the property and finance the the building to build his business Back in the day so and that was probably good for Mr Hyman to have more vendors surrounding him because they were compliment. You know the traffic. That would have downtown. I guess he believed in helping like so many other things he did. I ask you not to make. Lafayette successfully believed in other people and helping them along the way. Yeah I wish I could have met both the down because this was a different place back then but it was on the way to growing so good choice for him. So let's go back to talking about your store. I have a couple of questions you brought up the Internet and how people shop online and stuff like Amazon bad. It seems like you can buy everything from toilet brush. You know to clean your toilet bowl too. I guess rugs and other things but how has that impacted your business do you? Do you look at the service you offer is awaited distinguish yourself from easy purchases. Yeah all of the above. John I mean like you know I mean we all use the Internet. It's it's tied into our life. Everybody has a cellphone a computer laptop. You know I pay whatever it is and it's just the way we communicate and live today but I think part of the reason that our businesses remained intact in and grown and been successful. Is that because you can't get the personal touch through the Internet that you do when you deal with somebody locally or in the store and and. I think a lot of reason the people shop the Internet is maybe convenience and they also have the perception. I think that you can buy everything cheaper on the Internet and I know for a fact that that's not true especially when it pertains to my business work competitive you know. We have to be competitive. Otherwise you know if you're not competitive pricewise to go to the competition or in my case the Internet being part of the competition And on top of that at not a premium we can offer the service and the personal touch that you get the can on the Internet It's arrive you have to have the right balance of product of price an offer a service that you can't get somewhere else and we like to believe that. That's that's what we do so when you opened up. How do you go home? Decarla? Just say I've got an idea. No late was that a big decision to leave probably positions that. We're more secure to open your own business. Well it was. A combination of things happened at the time. I won't go into detail but It was Think okay what's the next step and I always wanted to. Perhaps own business are participate in a business and in talking with my brothers Although they were busy with the flooring side and didn't really have room to grow that specifically within the flooring Business Jeremy's flooring although they were had rugs there at the time felt it would be a good Opportunity to expand on that in a standalone location and we had some guidance through some friends in the flooring industry that had opened stores somewhere else and we use that as a A stepping stone or kind of a tool to go into the business and relied on some of vendors to give some input and it was just putting the plan together and from start to finish we were up and running and open and in the rug business probably four months from when we started thinking a mile so time time plaza. It had been opened a while. That was time class established center in and we the timing. It was pretty occupied at the time but they were happened to be a space that opened up and We thought that was a good location for us and being on the completely opposite in a town from from where flooring story is but The flooring stores more of a destination where people you gotta go there because it's not on the high maintenance traffic areas. Lafayette now but Johnson Street Ambassador Corridor obviously to the busiest intersections in town. So it worked out well force you remember your first day when you open the door Yeah in fact today. If I'm not mistaken. Is What the Twelfth Eleventh Today? Yeah Yeah. It's almost twenty. Two years to the day we opened the first week of May nine hundred ninety eight and yeah I do. I think we were still we just. We were opening and We hadn't really done any advertising to speak of just getting open. We're going to do a promotion a little later but and somebody walked in the door and we were still put stuff together own hanging and rearranging. Somebody walked in and said hey you open. We city made I sale that. Gosh I just you know when you hear about what they call mom and pop businesses. I know that that's the majority of America and I just don't like to call smaller businesses with under so many employees mom and pop. It's really your entrepreneur and you put yourself on the line you had small children. You know what I'm saying. It's it's a big step to open another establishment like a big risk. It was in respect but I believed in. I guess myself to some degree to take the chance to do it I believed in my family and their support and I thought we were bringing a product that had a need in the community and that the community would support us as well so it tastes for change. it was scary it. It's scary to take step out of your comfort zone to from deduce. Something you were familiar with before to do something completely different. I knew I had the I think the knowledge to put the whole thing together. But you always have your doubts and wonder it's going to really work out for you so I don't look it. It hasn't always been an easy road like like anything in life whether it's business or not You have good times and bad times. But I've got to say the good have been outweighed the tough times as you have been there with some of the deaths. Abs- dips in the economy and oil and gas. And and I tell you Lafayette to resilient place. I think we'll get back to Hopefully this will. We consider normal. I don't know if it'd be what we used to but Are you comfortable talking about what's been going on with Your Business? You're absolutely I'm in the same boat as everybody here in town. I mean that was shocking in March business from going to having starting out the first couple of months. Doing well doing okay. Doing you always look what you did last year compared to this year. And we're off to a good start and it's like just put the brakes on in mid March in our business literally like down White most other businesses are a lot in Lafayette We had we closed the doors. Amine into March We were closed for. I guess approximately six weeks. So when you own a business and you have zero revenue. It's a long time to blondes. It's tough but Luckily we were in a in a pretty good position and To be able to do it. And it's been tough though you try to keep your employees paid and and sustain Your Business until it can get back open. Luckily we we were fortunate to open up here. You know in the last week and a half to and and it's been very slow but something's better than nothing she now like. I said I think the People Lafayette Indiana where we're resilient. We've been through a lot from the oil field and slow down and economy and hurricanes and whatnot so I have great faith in Lafayette. That will be back to normal very soon. Pray for that too. 'cause even with things opening up. I think people are just a little fearful about you. Know what what is tomorrow brings as their their pocket book but You were telling me before. We started the interview that this is really one of the best times of year. People are typically flocking. Tears store. There you know fixing up their owns and pick time of the year the Spring and the fall for us. I think you know people come in after the monographs. Dvd's and The springtime just makes people energetic with the weather like it is not sides. People start thinking about fixing up the inside as well as outside of their homes and So yeah you know. The kids are normally still in school Before the summer break so yeah. It's usually a very busy time for us and so yeah it was. It was unfortunate that this happened happened. This time of year is kind of like a double whammy right and again I'm optimistic. I think traffic is just being reopened as picked up. And it's very encouraging we're taking the precautions like everybody Trying to keep the social distancing the good thing about our stores that we know a lot of people in there at any one time. So we're able to do that pretty easily but Anyway thing but yeah. This has been a year usually a busy time of year so hopefully next mother tool pick right right. Well Yeah we just got through Mardi gras before all this started. And is there anything else? You'd like to talk about their store. Can you tell us where I guess you know? We can look it up but it's inbound. We are on the corner of ambassador carefree in Inglewood drive. Which is if you're coming from Johnson Street. It's about a mile. Be On your right hand side. There's a Chili's right across the street from us. We're facing a ambassador few pets there. You'll see the sign We share a building with I'll give them a plug. Robert Me Hawk with Robert emms Salon. Lot of women go there so and Yeah One more thing about the store we we do. Our Name Says Rug Gallery but we've when we moved there we expanded and we do a lot of home decor products as well. A lot of people may be. Don't know that. But we do anything from Furniture Items Lamps Artwork accessories so an individual it's choosing rugs is can also buy other things to accent their home And and we do work with a lot of decorators in town. We have a very strong base That they come in and bring their clients and help them in the process to choose rugs in addition to helping our clients in the store a main another service. We offer you as well If need be We'll we'll make an appointment. We'LL SCHEDULE A TIME. And we'll bring out the rugs chose to your house and lay them out for you and helping the decision Let you see it in your home and and set it up for you Most people come in and we'll load the rugs up and they'll take them home and deal with sales but if you want that option we had something we do offer so again. Another personal touch That you can't get unless you come right stores right. Well thank you and I'll put all this in the show notes on the website so people never find in the website that you have like to talk a little bit. I know about your Mardi Gras. You like Mardi Gras. There's other things I don't know anything about it. I know you and Carla are very active in Mongolia and I found a picture of you online as King of Xanadu and I knew that because I'd seen there but You WanNa talk about you know your involvement in all that Sure I've grown up in Lafayette When we live where the store is on on Jefferson Boulevard. I mean that was along the parade route in. Lafayette still is in fact. When I was growing up I actually lived in the house there On the side of the Store Jefferson Boulevard. So as a kid growing up you watch the parade morning. My Dad was involved in Gabriel road. The floats throw stuff. So it was a natural progression. Going up later I've I've actually been a member As as as you are in fact the crew Bonaparte did that since the early eighties and still an active member served in different capacities with the crew. But now I'm just a standing member still enjoy the fun and festivities And involved in the crew. Gabriel as well done that for for quite a few years. My daughter was made some time back and I was fortunate to escort her as a as a do. The is match. Dollar was king that year. Nice King Gabriel and and so family's been involved with a long time I was also very fortunate to be asked to represent the cruise xanadu rare prominent women cruising Lafayette to standing as King Three MARDI GRAS AGO. So that was a great honor. That's a nice young. They're they're a fun bunch ladies in thinking about them. As a second family they invite me back every years patch royalty and still very close with a lot of them so I know a lot of people you know make vacation plans and travel out of town from Ati gras and but I'm wouldn't miss it for the war been involved. I don't think of Mr Ball when you went to thank six or seven balls. We've kind of cut that back a little bit. You know. I had to do that with John to well last year. The Not in twenty twenty twenty nineteen. He was active with greater southwest. And we went to just almost all the balls and I had broken my arm my right arm so to get in I. Just I couldn't go shopping. What do I have in my closet? We were having to throw beads and I thought you know only Lafayette people. Just love it and it's just bring so much joy to the community you know you're it's it's it's great for the community and It's IT'S I. Guess it's in your blood so yeah with it absolutely. How still riding parades every year throw beads and right now my kids are involved in so we participate with them. So it's still a lot of fun. Yeah so your kids are grown up. I mean you're thirty. Have a daughter. Who'S THIRTY JESSICA? My son Stamos Cooper. He's twenty nine and they're both members of the crew Bonaparte now as well when they were old enough they joined I sponsored in their first year. That's really you can do that age. Exactly and they did it when they were younger. They were involved with us like like we were with our parents and now we now we share in the festivities. You think they might follow in your footsteps any interest in the family business for probably not. I don't know that yet to be seen but my daughter She's a nurse and my son lives in Lafayette as well. He's in he's in sales so I don't know I'll stick with it for a few more years. I'm sure and in secret. He's got people my wife. Retard quite a few years ago from the lavish shares department. They keep asking me have friends. When are you going to retire so well? Probably never when you own businesses. Hard to say I'm GonNA shut it down. I may back off a little bit at some point but for now when you still enjoy doing what I do. So when people ask us that we have one that's twenty one and junior at. Lsu So there's no way is anywhere on the still are still on your payroll still on the payroll which which is good but at this age. There's no reason to retire. I think you know you'd be bored. I think as long as I think that's what keeps some people going. I mean you can slow down a little bit but Yeah if you enjoy what you do and and your health allows you to. Why not stay involved right? Well no do you. Any advice probably tells you might ask this. Give any advise you could share with people that are thinking about possibly take making a career. Change opening their own establishment. Whatever it is. Is there anything that you've learned that you wish you had known or just something that you've seen over the years you know? Well I guess you learn as you go I mean you know my my the other Jobs that I had before in banking and being involved in the other businesses and learning management skills. You know you can go to school at but a lot of that is not something that can be taught right you have to. Was they say on the job experience so a lot of that enabled me the knowledge wise to to be able to take the risk? And do what I wanted to do but I guess just if I if I had to think about it and one thing is don't be scared to take the chance you know and I guess I looked at it will. What's a worst case scenario? If it didn't work out you can always. I felt. I could always go back to doing what I had done before. But without taking the chance the risk I would never know if I would maybe be successful in going out on my own to do something whatever that is showing courage people if you have a desire or a need or or certain to do something. Don't be scared to take the risk if if the opportunity and and the timing is right and you have your family support and you feel like the community like Lafayette or wherever you live. We'll support you. Give it a chance. Yeah and I think bringing value like you do like you were you. Were meeting a need. The people you know things that they wanted as they were tastes were changing and I think that's the key. Do What you love bit. Make sure there's a market in that you can bring value you know and again like what we sell the product but it's it is more of a want and not a Nia so but it also makes a home big. Does we feel like I mean you can buy a lot of things for your home and we like to thank if those people that bought a rug. It's kind of like the final piece of the puzzle. You can have all your home furnishings in your your furniture and when you put the right rug down in the right place in the room really just pulls everything together and warms up space in your room and completes the Space Oh it transforms it. That's what we think any. I think so. I agree when I see real estate. Yeah I notice you have a lot of roads in your this one. I'm embarrassed about this when we bought when moved down and this is like a cheapo machine may I never thought we'd have twenty years later and others you probably could tell were higher value bit. It's still you know we have dogs and we had little kids and I know I know someone who can update that forty if you likes bestseller Gerald Sharon meet. Thank you for your friendship. Thank you for making time to come. Discover Lafayette. This is what the show's about. It's to highlight the wonderful people in our community. We'll thank you John. I'm glad you thought Enough for me to invite me in. This is a pleasure. It's been a lot of fun. I told you once before. I enjoy your program. Time Getting Kate to To people in places in Lafayette. So thanks for letting me be a part thank you. I'm lucky I can do this and I want to get in that last minute. Thank you again to Raider and Jason. Sikora who actually mixes are tape. So we'll be sending this online and he'll mix it and make it sound better and then of course Iberia Bank Lafayette General Health in rally marketing. For helping me keep the podcast going so thanks to our listeners. You can go to discover Lafayette Dot Net and you can listen Gerald interview or our other one. I think it's one hundred forty eight or forty nine. Now we've got quite a few or even better. You can subscribe on. Your phone is go to your little. Podcast APP. You can subscribe to discover Lafayette of for Friday morning behalf of discover Lafayette. This is John Swept you.

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