People / Flashes January-February 2012

Eunice resident Michael Sonnier, a local family nurse practitioner, has been named director of Arc of Acadiana’s newly acquired Southwest Developmental Center. The Iota center was acquired from the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals. Sonnier’s experience includes a previous position in Arc’s New Iberia offices as head nurse and work at Southwest Developmental Center. Most recently, he had a successful family practice in Eunice and worked for Savoy Medical Center. Arc of Acadiana’s Acadia Division serves those with developmental disabilities by offering residential, supported living and in-home services, as well as employment services. Future plans for the facility include a Family Practice Clinic that will provide a full range of health care to the public, as well as to those with developmental disabilities living in the community.

UL marketing majors Hannah Darby and Jordan Johnson ranked 10th overall at the 2011 Russ Berrie Institute National Sales Challenge, the second largest national collegiate student sales competition, held in New Jersey. The ranking was among a field of 30 universities with 60 student competitors from across the country. Darby’s performance earned her a 6th place overall individual ranking while Johnson ranked 20th overall. The two were trained by Dr. Duleep Delpechitre, assistant professor of marketing at UL.

In January, Lafayette architect Mark F. Stielper of MBSB Group assumed the presidency of the American Institute of Architects’ Louisiana board of directors. He took over the post after being selected president-elect last year during the annual membership meeting.
 
Julie Savoy, an associate at the Gachassin Law Firm, has been elected to serve as president of the Louisiana Society of Hospital Attorneys, the premier health lawyer group in the state. A Lafayette native, Savoy graduated from the UL College of Nursing in 1982 and is a 2002 graduate the Paul M. Hebert LSU Law School. She has 15 years of nursing experience in infection control and epidemiology and more than nine years of experience defending health care providers in medical malpractice matters and providing consultations in health care risk management.

Joan McCarthy has been named chief financial officer at RLC, the largest privately held helicopter operator in the Gulf of Mexico. She brings extensive expertise in management and accounting, including more than 15 years in the offshore oil and gas service industry. She has worked in financial leadership positions at Offshore Logistics Inc., a major provider of helicopter transportation for the oil and gas industry, and GulfMark Offshore Inc., a global provider of marine transportation. Most recently, McCarthy led financial operations for Moreno Group LLC, a global leader in fabrication and construction. Also at RLC, Travis Latiolais — who has 15 years of sales, marketing and operations experience in the offshore helicopter industry — was named vice president of business development. Latiolais comes to RLC after spending the past 11 years at global helicopter services operator Bristow Group (formerly Air Logistics), most recently as sales manager of the North American Business Unit. Earlier in his tenure with the company, he held leadership positions in maintenance and operations, having begun his career as a maintenance technician at PHI. Latiolais holds a BS in professional aeronautics management from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University and is a licensed, private pilot of fixed wing aircraft. McCarthy and Latiolais joined RLC only two months after the company made a series of significant announcements, including a strategic investment, the appointment of Dru Milke to CEO, and the rollout of a fresh corporate brand identity.

Lafayette General Medical Center President and CEO David Callecod was named among the country’s most committed and influential leaders in the health care industry. At the 9th Annual What’s Right in Healthcare conference in Chicago, Callecod was one of seven leaders nationwide inducted in Studer Group’s Fire Starter Hall of Fame. Each year, Studer Group, a national firm helping to improve American health care quality, recognizes a select few hospital leaders for their commitment to excellence and their impact on the lives of employees, physicians, patients and families. Now in his fourth year leading Lafayette General, Callecod’s first experience as a top administrator was at the age of 30 as CEO of two of Tenet’s highest performing hospitals in patient satisfaction.

Lafayette Parish Tax Assessor Conrad Comeaux was a featured speaker at the 2011 FutureView Conference held in New Orleans. The conference, which showcases the latest advances in aerial imaging technology, was hosted by Pictometry. Comeaux’s presentation focused on the benefits that local governments gain by using various high-resolution imagery tools provided through aerial imaging companies like Pictometry and leveraging those technologies to lower costs. In order to minimize the amount of time spent gathering basic details of properties, Comeaux explained that the Lafayette Parish Assessor’s Office uses high-resolution ortho photography, which involves viewing the property from the top looking down, as well as oblique imaging, viewing all four sides of a property at an angle.

To honor people who have made an impact in their communities, Community Foundation of Acadiana held its inaugural 2011 Leaders in Philanthropy Awards Luncheon, presented by The Shaw Group, at the Cajundome Convention Center. CFA presented Leaders in Philanthropy Awards to the following individuals and couples in each of its eight-parish service areas: Acadia Parish – Ted and Judy Carmichael; Evangeline Parish – Tim Fontenot; Iberia Parish – Dr. Mike and Tommye Halphen; Lafayette Parish – James “Jim” H. Prince; St. Landry Parish – Bobby Dupre; St. Martin Parish – Dr. Kenneth L. Fournet; St. Mary Parish – Gregory J. Hamer Sr.; and Vermilion Parish – Eugene M. Sellers. The event also featured keynote speaker Bert Jacobs, co-founder of the “Life is good” brand, which has reached sales of more than $100 million a year. Jacobs inspired CFA’s audience of 675 community leaders, business leaders and nonprofits as he spoke of how to optimize business and philanthropy through the power of optimism. He also spoke of leadership and corporate social responsibility.

The Lafayette Chapter of the American Association of Drilling Engineers has selected its 2011-12 board. Each year, officers, steering committee members and chairmen from local oil and gas companies volunteer their time to guide the group’s mission of education and information sharing. The local chapter holds its general meetings the third Monday of each month at 11:30 a.m. at the Petroleum Club. AADE officers for the upcoming year are Nick Rezvani, president (Marlin Energy); Sharon Moore, treasurer (Halliburton); Matt Lane, second vice president (Smith Technologies); Derrick Daigle, second vice president (National Oilwell Varco); and Peggy Meynard, secretary/membership chairwoman (IntegriCert).

Triumph MeadowBrook Specialty Hospital has changed its name to Kindred Hospital Lafayette and named Sharon Black chief executive officer. The name change reflects Triumph Healthcare’s merger with Kindred Healthcare, the largest operator of long-term acute care hospitals in the country, with 120 LTAC Hospitals in 26 states. Kindred LTAC hospitals provide aggressive, specialized interdisciplinary care to medically complex patients who require extended recovery time. Black, a registered nurse who has a master’s degree in health administration, has extensive experience in health care, working in hospitals in Louisiana, Nevada and Georgia. A Crowley native and UL graduate, she previously served as administrator/CEO at the HealthSouth Rehab Hospital of South Louisiana in Baton Rouge and chief nursing officer at the Regional Medical Center of Acadiana. She began her career at Our Lady of Lourdes in Lafayette.

Michael Doise has joined MidSouth Bank’s Accounting Department as asset liability manager. He is responsible for financial projections, asset/liability forecasts, and management reporting. A Lafayette native, Doise earned an MBA in finance from Tulane University and a bachelor’s degree in accounting from LSU. He worked at Morgan Keegan in Memphis as a fixed income trader for two years before returning to school to earn his MBA.

Coldwell Banker Pelican Real Estate’s learning courses are now approved for elective credit by the Council of Residential Specialists. CRS was created to attract and retain real estate agents seeking the knowledge, tools and relationship-building opportunities needed to maximize their income and professionalism in residential real estate. In 2010, CRS designees earned nearly three times more than non-CRS residential agents. According to the Realtor Association of Acadiana, there are 56 Realtors in Lafayette who hold CRS designations and 458 in the state of Louisiana. Coldwell Banker’s University BOO$T and Previews International Properties Specialist courses account for one-half of the 32 elective credits required for the CRS designation and are offered exclusively to members of the Coldwell Banker network. BOO$T is a high-accountability program designed for experienced Coldwell Banker sales agents that promotes best-practice sharing, networking and the use of cutting-edge technology. Previews International Properties Specialist is an interactive certification program providing the core foundation for working with the affluent market.

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