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Bossier Chamber of Commerce Newsletter Inside this Edition

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April 2014

BIZ. Tools Podcast

‘Sound’ Business Advice

Page 27

Gaming Turns


Casino Gaming Has Been A Part of the Local Economy for Two Decades. What Have We Done with the “Winnings?”



Biz. Magazine • April 2014

The First Word


Don’t ever assume people know why they should do business with you

y oldest son just landed a position with a major pizza manufacturing and transportation corporation. Ok, he is working for Domino’s Pizza. He is excited about the prospect of learning the business in hopes of opening his own franchise someday. During his hiring process, he learned of his pay scale. If he is inside the store, making pizzas, he earns one rate of pay. If he is out delivering pizzas, he makes a lower rate, but gets to keep his tips.

This was news to me. I figured the drivers at Domino’s were independent contractors, much like newspaper carriers. I assumed (wrongly) that drivers made a little profit on each pizza they delivered. So, I never felt bad about not tipping the driver.

Now, thanks to my son, I have learned differently. Since these drivers are paid much like waiters and waitresses, they rely on tips to make ends meet. If they do well, their finances benefit from the effort. If they don’t they feel it in their own pocketbooks. This wage plus tips formula is “common knowledge” about wait staff in restaurants. However, I am sure I am not the only one who was unaware of this scenario for many pizza delivery drivers. There is a valuable business lesson to be learned in this “revelation.” How many times do we miss a sale, blow an opportunity or lose market share simply because we don’t inform our customers and clients of the “whole picture.” We often sell products and services based upon price alone, placing us in a bidding war with other similar products and services. We neglect to not only show the value we are bringing to the table, but lives we are helping in the process. In nearly every business, a product or service is the work of individuals. These individuals have lives and families that count on them for income support. Doing business locally also has far-reaching benefits, from spreading out a tax burden to helping grow and maintain the local work force. Many would gladly pay a little more to support such things. But we often fail to tell them why. Left to our devices, consumers (and businesses) will always go for the lower price, barring any additional information. That is why it is vitally important to tell us about all the benefits of doing business. Frankly, we just don’t think of the implications. Don’t be afraid to showcase more than just your price and/or perceived value. Remind the marketplace that you are one of “them.” And, doing business with you is an investment in the local community. And, don’t forget to tip your pizza delivery man. Especially if his last name is “Specht.”

David Specht Jr. President of Specht Newspapers, Inc. Read his blog about leadership at He may be reached via email at

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April 2014 • Biz. Magazine


Contents 20

It’s A Matter of P.R.I.D.E. Submissions sought for tourism/hospitality awards

On the Cover


Giving the SBC ‘Real Beer’

Great Raft Brewing Company aims to educate, stimulate locals with products

Twenty years is a long time. For two decades, casino gaming has been an integral part of the local economy. Revisit some of the impact and highlights of the past 20 years.


BIZ Tools

Books, Podcasts and More!

Regulars Correction

In the Bossier Chamber of Commerce Column last month, we misidentifed the author. The correct indetification is to the right. We apologize for the error.

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BIZ. News Online

The BIZ. website at is Shreveport-

home for business news, updated as it happens. In / 8"  # 6 4 * / & 4 4 Bossier’s addition, users can sign up for a free BIZ. Daily Report to .0 / 5 ) :  ." ( " ; * / & keep up with BIZ. news from the comfort of their Inbox.

Dennis is Sr. Director of Career Services & Placement at Centenary College

Volume 5, Number 1 | ©Copyright 2014 by Specht Newspapers, Inc. All rights reserved. BIZ. is published each month by Specht Newspapers, Inc. at 4250 Viking Drive, Bossier City, LA 71111. Telephone (318) 747-7900. Information in this publication is gathered from sources considered to be reliable, but the accuracy and completeness of the information cannot be guaranteed.

Biz. Magazine • April 2014

They Won’t Know...


Building Loyal Customers


Have a Great Idea?


Not Worth The Gamble


All in the Family


Dave On Small Business

Dennis Taylor

Want to advertise?



Don’t ever assume people know why they should do business with you

From Cars to Casinos, Loyalty Is Key to Long-Term Success

Listening to others is key to fostering a successful team

Your online presence is not something you leave to ‘chance’

Learn what the ‘family’ means in Family Owned Business

Superstar salesman, The family business

Win-Win Powertools

Tools You Can Use When it comes to winning in Business, it helps to have the right “tools” for the job.

Building Loyal Customers


From Cars to Casinos, Loyalty Is Key to Long-Term Success why Mark wanted the ver the last two presentation. Then it hit months in the me and I said…. “You BIZ, I have fowant to be #1 nationcused our atwide!” Mark’s smile grew tention on wide. building “LoyI then wanted to know alty” in our customers. I how many salespeople included five great to prepare for. He smiled things that “Loyal” cusagain and said I should tomers tend to do: Come prepare for his entire back; Spend more; Restaff...not just salespeosist the competition; ple. “Everyone from the Work out problems; Recfront door to the back… ommend/Refer. I also Mark Johnson — Jerry’s Loyalty Expert service technicians too.” mentioned (not by Mark gave me his six name) my Loyalty exsteps for loyalty that he wanted everyone pert, Mark Johnson, President of the to remember. Mark had a loyalty plan and Holmes Auto Group in Shreveport. Mark helped me to clearly understand that build- was prepared. ing customer loyalty is one of the keys, if When Mark sat in for all of the repeated not the biggest key, to success. Mark hired presentations, I grew concerned if I was me to prepare a presentation for his team meeting his expectations. He assured me, on building loyalty. “Jerry, I want everyone on my Team to know how convinced I am Knowing that the Holmes Honda dealership that dominated Honda sales in Louisiana and was highly rated in the nation I wondered

we’re ALL responsible for growing Loyalty. I want the team to know that includes me.

tinue to spend, be happy and then recommend you?

My 30 years of sales and service experience in Shreveport/Bossier tells me that in one form or another, the casinos also work hard to be expert at achieving loyalty. The competition is fierce. They know that Loyalty is paramount. Each casino works consistently to train their employees well to grow Loyalty among all of their customers.

OK then….what’s your plan? Learn from the experts in our market and make it so! Good Selling Jerry

What’s the actionable step Jerry? Good Question and best answered with two questions… Do you want customers to return, con-

Jerry Frentress Speaker & Coach, Win-Win Power(ful) Tools for Sales, Service and Employee Interviewing. Website: Business Facebook: . 453-6080 / Bossier City

April 2014 • Biz. Magazine


Marketing B-S (Bossier-Shreveport)

Have a Great Idea?


Randy Brown

Advertising/Marketing Guru He is the Advertising Director for Bossier Newspaper Publishing Company, Inc., publishers of the Bossier Press-Tribune and BIZ. Magazine Randy may be reached at


Biz. Magazine • April 2014

Listening to others is key to fostering a successful team

ber placed on the table during such a meeting. Then, seeing that idea built upon during the remainder of the meeting and in the days to follow. For me, it simply doesn't get much better than that! Absolutely, this can highly motivate the team member that started the ball rolling, as we touched upon in last month's column.

nyone can have a great idea. So much can be gained from listening to those around us. This definitely includes the members of your team. As managers, all of us can sometimes fall into the trap of thinking that our own idea(s), or implementing the ideas of those that we report to, are the only ideas that really count. In reality, of course, nothing could be further from the truth. Valuable ideas can come from anywhere, any time and any place.

If we want to get scientific about it, traditional management theory is always helpful. Using Management Theory Y, your team is motivated by positive incentives. This can include a multitude of things, including listening to your team’s thoughts and ideas. Many companies in the past have even placed suggestion boxes in the office so that team members could submit their ideas. This theory assumes that your team members are creative, optimistic and want to contribute to the forward progression of the team/company.

Brainstorming, “Think Tank” type sessions or just general meetings with those on our team are one of my very favorite parts of being in management. It is a great and most rewarding feeling to have an idea or suggestion from a team mem-

As managers, we must clearly understand that human nature/human behavior plays a vital role in the performance/productivity of our team. Your team must constantly know how it fits into

the overall scheme of things and as such, managers must always find a variety of ways to support the team. Of course, both personalities and the overall working environment definitely factor in to the equation. Furthermore, a wide array of motivational forces can also be used to drive your team toward the overall destination/goal.

April 2014 • Biz. Magazine


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Biz. Magazine • April 2014

The Go-Giver

Bob Burg and David Mann The Go-Giver tells the story of an ambitious young man named Joe who yearns for success. Joe is a true go-getter, though sometimes he feels as if the harder and faster he works, the further away his goals seem to be. And so one day, desperate to land a key sale at the end of a bad quarter, he seeks advice from the enigmatic Pindar, a legendary consultant referred to by his many devotees simply as the Chairman.

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April 2014 • Biz. Magazine


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While we’ve never created killer ink, we have worked with Louisiana businesses for over 25 years. Offering free training programs like QuickBooks TM , online marketing, and safety education, LCI provides great service and expert guidance to local businesses in just about every field. :: :: 985-612-1230 10 Biz. Magazine • April 2014

Uncommon Sense Marketing

Not Worth The Gamble


Your online presence is not something you leave to ‘chance’ irst impressions are a big deal, right? You know the importance of a good handshake, looking professional, and being friendly rather than pushy. But did you realize that an ever increasing number of people are getting that first impression

of you and your business online? Time to make sure your online presence is a good one. In my work with clients I always start with taking stock of their current website and social media. On a website I look for a number of things, including a fresh, clean look; correct information; and I make sure there aren’t any typos or glaring errors. (You’d be surprised, folks!) If your website isn’t making a good impression, you’re likely to lose your visitor as a potential client. If you don’t have a website, get one. And if you haven’t updated yours in a few years, it’s time for a refresh. A website is a living thing and can get outdated just like your furniture or clothes.

Amy Kinnaird

Social Media Evangelist

Amy is a corporate trainer and speaker on primarily marketing topics, but most people locally know her as the Social Media Evangelist. Over the past 6 years she has spoken to dozens of groups, and taught hundreds of people how to use Social Media for marketing their businesses. She has 35 years experience in marketing, and has trained people on computers and software forever. She’s at the intersection of Tech and Speak.

Gone are the days of “set it and forget it.” Today’s websites have videos, blogs, and social media links. If you’re not sure how your website looks to others, ask a few friends or colleagues for their comments.

you’re doing. Take LinkedIn, for example. What does your profile look like? That may be your first impression online. What does your picture look like? Is your summary and work experience current? Is it easy to read and understand, or is it filled with outdated “business speak?” Add some great LinkedIn Attachments to your profile to showcase that you know what you are doing. Then, make sure you’re posting valuable and relevant articles for your connections. If your target audience is on Facebook, then make sure you have a well branded Facebook business page and are posting regularly and the right content for your audience. The same thing applies to any other social network you are using. The only thing worse than someone not being able to find you is that they find you, but your online presence makes it look like your aren’t keeping up with the times. Don’t gamble with your online presence when you’ve only got one shot to make a first impression.

Then there’s social media. You need to show up, and you need to show up like you know what

April 2014 • Biz. Magazine


Business news you can’t wait to read.

Business news is happening all the time in Shreveport-Bossier. And nothing keeps you in the loop better than the BIZ. Daily Report. Get the latest by email each day. Sign up for FREE at

12 Biz. Magazine • April 2014

Business Development

All in the Family


Learn what the ‘family’ means in Family Owned Business ocal and state numbers for employment are on the uptick. Great news, even as determining who is employed and who is not seems to be an increasingly complex trend to tally. With that thought in mind, I found this interesting excerpt from the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ website: “George, 16, has no job from which he receives any pay or profit. However, George does help with regular chores around his father's farm and spends about 20 hours each week doing so.

“Lisa spends most of her time taking care of her home and children, but she helps in her husband's computer software store all day Friday and Saturday. “Under the Government's definition of employment, both George and Lisa are employed. They fall into a group called ‘unpaid family workers,’ which includes any person who worked without pay for 15 hours or more per week in a familyowned enterprise operated by someone in their household.“ I’m willing to bet there are (approximately) a million more things I didn’t know about family businesses. The next Greater Shreveport Chamber of Commerce Business Development Connection Program Luncheon features Christopher L. Martin, Ph.D., Dean of Centenary's Frost School of Business. He'll be speaking on what "family" means to a family-owned business. Some questions he'll address: -What is so unique about a family-owned business? -Why is the distinction important? -If you represent a bank, law practice, investment group, or CPA firm, what are the consequences of not understanding this distinction? -What advantages can family businesses leverage? What special challenges must they overcome to succeed? The luncheon will be Thursday, April 17, 11:30am - 1:00pm at the Petroleum Club. The $20 registration includes a lunch buffet. Meanwhile, the nominations are in! Join us for “Reflections on Success,” the 2014 Minority Business Opportunity Awards Dinner presented by the Greater Shreveport Chamber of Commerce Business Development Connection on April 24. Cocktails at 6:00 p.m., dinner at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $50 each. Recipients for the following awards will be announced at the event: -Top Business Professional of the Year -Small Business Owner of the Year -Emerging Business of the Year -Lifetime Achievement Award

Jill Macchiaverna

To register for either event, call 318.677.2500 or email

Jill is Publicity Chair, Business Development Connection for the Greater Shreveport Chamber of Commerce.

April 2014 • Biz. Magazine


Cover Story

Rolling (Dice) on the River


A look at riverboat casino gaming in Shreveport-Bossier, 20 years later

wenty years is a long time. A lot of things can come and pass in a matter of months, let alone decades. Pop culture, fashion, Presidents, and even nations can all rise and fall. With this change comes a difference in perception, and perspective is especially important when discussing the leaps and bounds Shreveport-Bossier has come in the past two decades. So let's reel back the years and remember where we stood from a financial and commercial standpoint. 1994 was a very different time. The state had yet to recover from the oil bust several years before, resulting in a declining tax base and residents leaving the state. Those who stayed behind had to deal with unemployment. It was a dire situation that needed a game changer. Enter new legislation, passed in 1992, that allowed riverboat gaming in the state. A symbolic "roll of the dice" by the legislature began to pay off two years later. The

Twenty Years of Riverboat Gaming A Timeline


Harrah's Shreveport Casino opens April 18 in Shreveport


Isle of Capri opens May 20 in Bossier City


Horseshoe Casino opens July 9 in Bossier City


Casino Magic opens Oct. 4 in Bossier City


Hollywood Casino opens in Shreveport


Casino Magic is reopened as Boomtown


Old Shreveport Harrah’s Casino reopens as Sam's Town


DiamondJack's reopens renovated Isle of Capri casino


Margaritaville in Bossier City is latest addition to riverboat gaming

14 Biz. Magazine • April 2014

local leadership and business community got behind casino gaming and the prospect of much needed revenue. They also fought to have profits from the gaming be divided among local bodies for infrastructure and other onetime improvements. The gamble on gambling resulted in a payoff that we're still seeing 20 years later. At the time the casinos were looking to locate in northwest Louisiana, current Bossier City Mayor Lorenz "Lo" Walker Walker was serving as Chief Administrative Officer to Mayor George Dement. Walker recalls being in meetings with organizations to negotiate this new industry for the area. "The city was strapped, a lot of things were in bad condition and there was major traffic congestion. We knew this source of income could address some of those problems." Without the casinos, the city would not have its "sorely

needed" infrastructure improvements. To date, the city has utilized $247 million for infrastructure projects. "It has added a quality of life," said Walker. "(Gambling is) not for everybody, but it brings in a lot of people from out of town as a source of revenue. Even people who don't support gaming recognize the benefit gaming has done to bolster this community." Wayne Brown, Chairman of the Board for Brown Builders, served for 20 years on the Greater Bossier Economic Development Foundation and was president of the board when the decision concerning casino gaming was brought up. "We were faced as business community with the opportunity to accept riverboat gambling or reject it. It was during the time of the oil bust in Louisiana and it was not a good economic time and we were faced with a lot of unemployment and shrinking tax base. We looked at it as an economic development opportunity," said Brown. "We saw

STORBY Sean Green

the opportunity for income into our cities and GBEDF saw opportunity to develop Bossier." Brown, whose company served as general contractors on building Horseshoe, noted without the funds there would be none of the major attractions we all take as a given, today. "We hoped there would be jobs, we hoped there would be capital improvements, and we hoped it would develop a tourism industry and Shreveport-Bossier City would be a destination. Without a lot of those funds, we wouldn't have had the help to build the CenturyLink Center and the Louisiana Boardwalk." In that vein, perhaps the biggest benefit of the casinos has been the creation of a tourism industry. "With the onset of casinos and new visitors, it allowed a number of new attractions to be built — SciPort, Artspace, Gator and Friends, etc. — and there are so many new attractions we didn't have before the casinos," said Stacy Brown,

Cover Story

President of the Shreveport-Bossier Convention and Tourist Bureau. "I think everyone knew it would be important to the state. We had a little bit of history with Louisiana Downs and seeing how people came from other markets. But we focused on diversifying the market — new attractions and hosting new events. Those were things to bring more recognition as a destination as a whole, but realizing the majority of our visitors came to game." Stacy poignantly noted that while the casinos have been an unbelievable boon to tourism, they've also had a positive impact on the lives of our residents. "Because the casinos came into our market with a great product for visitors, it's created a great quality of life for our citizens with entertainment and attractions, creation of new jobs, and money being spent locally, which has been a huge benefit for our local people."

Continued on Page 16

April 2014 • Biz. Magazine


BIZ. Newz

Re-Branded for Success Outlets at La. Boardwalk plans new tenants, expansion of outlets theme STORY BY SEAN GREEN

16 Biz. Magazine • April 2014


hanges are coming to Bossier’s biggest tourist attraction. The Outlets at the Louisiana Boardwalk was rebranded last year to match its new direction — a pure outlet shopping center. “That is what it was designed to do from the beginning,” said General Manager Bill McFadden. “It seems the previous owners lost their direction. By establishing this will be an outlet shopping center, the new owners have created a niche.” New York-based Garrison Investment Group acquired the property out of foreclosure in March 2013. Stirling Properties currently manages the property. In this new vision for the Louisiana Boardwalk, visitors can expect to see new, major national outlet stores. “Those are the type tenants we’re going after, those national outlet names. We can’t divulge who is coming in at this point,” said McFadden. The group is aiming for two to three new major tenants in 2014 with as many or more in 2015. McFadden did confirm that “a couple” of deals are done and architects have already begun working on remodels. He said he hopes to announce those deals within 60-90 days. “The leases aren’t signed yet. Letters of intent are in place, now we’re getting contractors ready to go and have ink dry on the final document.” He noted that you can expect to see a new major retailer in the area formerly occupied by Maiden Form and O’Brien’s, and currently occupied by the trolley car. “It takes a little while to ramp these things up. We

had to reestablish this shopping place as an outlet center and that takes time and dollars,” McFadden said. With two restaurants leaving the Boardwalk after the first of the year — O’Brien’s, a pub restaurant, and Pietro’s, a pizza restaurant — there was some concern that the vision would eliminate certain longstanding elements of the Boardwalk. McFadden was quick to note that the new vision won’t be pushing out restaurants to make room for outlet stores. “In terms of tenants falling out, yes there have been a few. None of those have been due to us pushing the outlet concept,” he explained. He said the Outlets at the Louisiana Boardwalk is an entertainment venue and will continue to be so. “We need restaurants, an arcade, and movie theater. We have a national chain restaurant discussing joining the Boardwalk on the riverfront. Another regional one is looking at locating there,” he said. As for non-chain retailers, McFadden said there is no set plan for eliminating or renewing those leases. “It depends on a case by case basis. We look to see if it adds to the customer experience. Are they doing good business? Are they a good operator? Does the customer want them here? Does the customer come looking for them? All that will factor in.” Even though the Boardwalk is undergoing changes, McFadden said the future is bright and the center has maintained its level of success at attracting regional visitors. “We’re filling a void, that wouldn’t be filled other-

(CC) Martin Arete Via Flickr The Outlets at Louisiana Boardwalk has been a top tourist destination since its opening in 2005.

wise. The closest outlet shopping center is near Dallas or Baton Rouge,” he said. He noted that the opening of Margaritaville Resort Casino last summer has helped their flow of shoppers.

“Margaritaville has been a tremendous addition, it’s bringing even more tourists to the center. They’re a very good neighbor we’re happy to have here,” McFadden said.

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April 2014 • Biz. Magazine


Green Piece

March BIZ. Leads to Great Podcast


Discussion of Millennials sheds some light fter last month, I'm sure you guys are sick of hearing about us millennials. But if you're not listening to the BIZ Tools Podcast, then you're missing out a great discussion about a very important topic. The March edition of BIZ. drove home a very important message — these casual, flexible, tech-savvy, 20-somethings are the future of the workforce and we all have to learn to work together. It was a point that was further debated by Baby Boomer Jerry Frentress, Gen. X'er David Specht, and myself in two separate podcasts.

Dave and Jerry interviewed me about the millennial's view on dress, flex time at work, goals, taking direction, "job hopping," and more. Jerry, especially, seemed to come away enlightened by the discussion and realized the gap between generations wasn't as gaping as many believe. We all want to win and we want to win now — it's just that Millennials want to do it on our own time while wearing jeans and a t-shirt. It sparked such a great debate between all of us that Jerry walked into my office a few days later and we spent 30 minutes going more in-depth on the subjects. We talked at such length and fervor I had to tell Jerry, "Save it for the podcast." Enter podcast #2 and more a roundtable scenario. Jerry particularly took issue with flex time and the baby boomer's perception that not working 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. means, in their minds, you're not really working. All this is to say that while Baby Boomers, Gen. X'ers and Millennials all want the same thing (success), there's still a ways to go, on all sides, between finding middle ground. It's an important item to consider, especially when you realize that to be a success, all members of a team have to be pulling in the same direction. I wondered, "How many businesses have/will shut their doors because a Baby Boomer refused to hire and lead a Millennial or a Millennial refused to acquiesce to the leadership of Baby Boomers?" Considering BIZ.'s organizational goal is to help businesses succeed by giving them all the education they need to grow, it only made sense that we put our proverbial money where our mouths are.

Sean Green Sean is vice president of BIZ and the managing editor of the Bossier PressTribune. You can follow him on twitter @editorsean.

18 Biz. Magazine • April 2014

We are currently designing a web course that will teach Millennials about the problems they will incur in the workplace, how to overcome them, and how to show older generations that their desires are valid and can be an asset for everyone. We hope to offer online materials and some public speaking engagements to spread what is, apparently, a very interesting and important issue for Shreveport-Bossier.

April 2014 • Biz. Magazine


NWLA Tourism

STORY BY Chris Jay

It’s a Matter of P.R.I.D.E.


Submissions sought for tourism/hospitality awards he 2014 P.R.I.D.E. Awards, an annual presentation of the Shreveport-Bossier Convention and Tourist Bureau, will be held at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, May 15 at the Horseshoe Riverdome in Bossier City. The evening will feature an awards program honoring the most outstanding employees in Shreveport-Bossier’s hospitality and tourism industry. Submissions are currently being sought for more than 30 award categories, ranging from Outstanding Valet to Outstanding Hotel Executive, hospitality industry businesses like hotels, restaurants and tourist attractions are encouraged to nominate their star employees for recognition. The evening’s final award, the P.R.I.D.E. Master Award, is the region’s highest honor among tourism and hospitality professionals. The acronym P.R.I.D.E. stands for “Proud Residents Involved in Developing our Economy.” The awards are held each year in early May, in conjunction with National Travel and Tourism

20 Biz. Magazine • April 2014

Week, which is observed during the first full week in May. “Front line workers like front desk staff, valets, servers and housekeeping – they are such a large part of our tourism industry,” said Kelly Wells, vice president of sports and tourism marketing for the Shreveport-Bossier Convention and Tourist Bureau. “The main focus of the P.R.I.D.E. Awards is to recognize those employees during our industry’s most prestigious event of the year.”

Garden Inn and Homewood Suites by Hilton located at 2015 Old Minden Road in Bossier City, has attended every P.R.I.D.E. Awards for the past 15 years. Ferland believes that the awards present a unique opportunity for his staff. “There is no greater reward than being recognized as being the best at what you do in front of a room filled with your peers,” Ferland said. “I believe there is not a more powerful way to let an employee know how valued they are.”

There is no cost associated with nominating an employee for awards consideration. Employers or others interested in nominating an employee for a P.R.I.D.E. Award may do so by visiting Nominations close at 8 a.m. on Wednesday, April 23.

Sci-Port: Louisiana’s Science Center has won several P.R.I.D.E. Awards, including organizational awards for recent traveling exhibits as well as recognition for marketing team member Karen Wissing. Jennifer McMenamin, senior director of development and marketing, nominated members of her team.

Ray Ferland, general manager of the Hilton

“As a supervisor, it’s rewarding to see my

team be recognized for their efforts,” McMenamin said. “Sometimes you have individuals that go above and beyond, and they deserve that special recognition.” Tickets to the P.R.I.D.E. Awards ceremony, which will include dinner and live entertainment, are available now at a cost of $40 per person. Award nominees will receive a discounted admission price of $20 per person. To purchase tickets to the event, visit Tickets must be purchased in advance and will not be available at the door. Ticket sales end at 4 p.m. on Friday, May 9. For more information on the 2014 P.R.I.D.E. Awards, contact Sheila Norman, sports and tourism administrator for the ShreveportBossier Convention and Tourist Bureau, at (318) 429-0651 or

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318.222.6111 318 . 222. 6111 aallegramarketi l le g r a m a r k e ti gs b . c o m April 2014 • Biz. Magazine


Bossierr Chamber B Ch ber G Ch Golf lf Cl C Classic l friday, may 30 · palmetto country club


Palmetto Country Club Friday, May 30, 2014 18-Hole, Four person Scramble First Come, First Served



Network poolside with live music, food, drinks and tournament awards.


$600 / Per Team of Four · $175 / Individual

TOURNAMENT FEES INCLUDE: Golf Cart and Green Fees, Lunch, Snacks, Beverages, Gift Bags, Door Prizes

· Gather Your Team · Title & After Party Sponsors Available · Contact Jana Morgan for more information · Visit us online at · 318-746-0252

22 Biz. Magazine • April 2014

From the Bossier Chamber

Photo Courtesy of the Shreveport-Bossier Convention and Tourist Bureau

@ The Casinos


Local gaming not slowing down at all

here’s no doubt that the Casino industries have played a major role in the economic impact in our region. Instead of looking back at what this industry has meant to the growth of the area, the Bossier Chamber thought it would be proper to share future initiatives of these local mainstays that help to attract so many to the area. Whether it’s a vibrant night life scene, 5-star dining or relaxing in a European style spa, our Chamber partners have something to fit what the community is looking for. Take a look at what they have on tap for the near future.

Sam’s Town Sam’s Town Hotel & Casino is proud to be a part of the greater Shreveport/Bossier City community. Since opening our doors 10 years ago, we’ve strived to have a positive, meaningful impact on this community. Employing over 1,000 local residents and attracting more than 19 million passengers to our riverboat casino since opening in May 2004, Sam’s Town also contributes to many charitable organizations in the area, and is a significant customer of many businesses throughout northwest Louisiana. Our long-term commitment to the community is demonstrated by our recent $10 million hotel renovation, completed in 2013. As we look forward to the next 10 years and beyond, Sam’s Town Hotel & Casino is committed to continued reinvestment in this community, both in our facility and our team members.

Boomtown Chef Ryan Gillespie is transforming Cattleman’s Buffet to include more local favorites. New to the menu are shrimp and grits, scampi frog legs, creole stewed okra and grandma’s Mexican cornbread. For those with a sweet tooth, scoop up a homemade waffle cone bowl and fill it with ice cream and toppings of your choice. Watch for more exciting changes from the Boomtown culinary team. Be sure to save room for non-stop casino excitement and enroll in the rewarding mychoice® giveaways. Stay up to date on Boomtown events by visiting or Boomtown is proud to be known as the locals’ casino and for being honored as 2012 Business of the Year by the Bossier Chamber of Commerce.

Horseshoe To see what the future holds for Horseshoe Bossier City, all you have to do is drive past the south side of the hotel. Work is now underway on the complex’s news $3.5 million swimming pool. DARE is set to open early this summer. This pool will be a huge first for Northwest Louisiana. It will be a Las Vegas style swimming pool complete with pool side bar, cabanas, and food. You can spend the day lounging by the pool with food and drink service delivered right to your cabana. DARE will also be the area’s first day club. This is a concept you will find in Las Vegas. Having fun listening to some of the hottest DJ’s spin music is no longer reserved Continued on Page 28

$2 LLongneck ongneck Beers Beers • Every Every Night Night Service Service IIndustry ndustry Night Night • Mondays Mondays & Tuesdays Tuesdays Tu Monday M onday – Friday Friday • Open Open at at 5pm 5pm SSaturday aturday & Sunday Sunday • Open Open at at Noon Noon

Premium Premium Prime Prime Beef Beef & Seafood Seafood Thursday T hursday & Sunday Sunday • 5pm 5pm – 9pm 9pm Friday Fr iday & Saturday Saturday • 5pm 5pm – 10pm 10pm


FFor or more more information information call call 318.746.0711 318.746.0711 orr visit o v i si t B




/BoomtownBossier / BoomtownBossier


Must M ust be be 21 21 or or older older to t o enter e nter casino. c a sino. ©2014 ©2014 Pinnacle Pinn acle Entertainment, E nter t ainme nt , Inc. I nc . All A ll rights right s reserved. r e s e r ve d .

P R O B L E M ?

8 0 0 . 5 2 2 . 47 0 0 April 2014 • Biz. Magazine


Dave Says — On Business Superstar salesman Dear Dave, I own a landscaping company, and recently I hired some superstar employees. One of them is really good, and I’d like to turn him into a salesman. How should I start this process? Daniel Dear Daniel, The first thing I’d do is talk to some other landscaping companies outside your area that are about your size, while big enough to have a salesman or two, and pick their brains as to how they’re structured. You could go visit them personally, or it could be as simple as a phone call. Just let them know you’re thinking about hiring your first salesman, and find out how they pay their guys and if it’s working well for everyone. What we’re talking about here is called best practices in business. Find something that works for someone else in your same industry, and apply it to your situation. Think of it this way. If you wanted to lose weight, you’d begin by doing what thin people are doing, right? You emulate behavior that generates positive results. Another thing I’d tell you in this kind of situation is to make sure the person involved understands that any compensation agreement you initiate in the beginning is on a trial basis for a specific length of time. You’re venturing into uncharted territory here, and while you want to make sure your new salesman makes enough money to eat and have a decent life, you don’t want him to make more than the company. Come up with a temporary compensation plan that’s agreeable to you both at the outset. Then, have an agreement to revisit the plan in 90 days, six months or a year down the road. There may be some time, and a little bit of give and take involved, but in the end you’ve both got to be okay with the upside and downside of the scale and the natural results. You’ll both be really happy if he’s busting it and making himself and the company financially successful. But as a business owner, you kind of want him to starve out (not literally) if he’s not making sales!



The family business Dear Dave, My brothers and I will soon be taking over a 30-year-old company that belongs to our dad. Do you have any advice for us? Dennis Dear Dennis, I could give you lots more advice than would ever fit in a column, or even in an answer on my radio show. So, for now let’s stick with some basics.

Ca Callll No Noww

2222-9446 22-9446 owned owned and and ooperated perated in Shr Shreveport eveport since 194 19488

Dave Ramsey Dave Ramsey is America’s trusted voice on money and business. He’s authored four New York Times best-selling books: Financial Peace, More Than Enough, The Total Money Makeover and EntreLeadership. The Dave Ramsey Show is heard by more than 6 million listeners each week on more than 500 radio stations. Follow Dave on Twitter at @DaveRamsey and on the web at

24 Biz. Magazine • April 2014

The first thing I’d suggest is to separate the ownership role from your operational roles. In other words, you need to decide ahead of time, and have a consensus, on who’s going to do what job. If you and your brothers are all going to be owners of the company when you “take it over,” but one of your brothers would function well in the role of CEO, then he’s in charge and everyone needs to know and respect that position. As a group, the owners should give the CEO direction, but they don’t make all the day-to-day decisions. In addition, someone needs to be in charge of finances, and you also need individuals overseeing sales and production. The second thing is you need to decide together how to handle things if someone wants out. If one of you misbehaves or incurs a disability, or if someone simply wants out of the business completely, you have to decide on a fair and equitable way to handle possibilities such as these. So, you’ll also need good ownership documents and a topnotch attorney to help put it all together. —Dave

Looking for something FUN to do? Kentucky Headhunters with Swamp Donkey

&RI Ă?!PRILĂ?Ă?sĂ?3ILVERĂ?3TARĂ?3MOKEHOUSE Ă?"OSSIER Join us for this hybrid of honky-tonk, blues and Southern rock. Their sound appeals to fans of both ROCKĂ?ANDĂ?COUNTRYĂ?/NLYĂ?OFlCIALLYĂ?TOGETHERĂ?FORĂ?AĂ?FEWĂ? albums, the band nevertheless left a long shadow. The show begins at 8 p.m., tickets are $25 and the show is for ages 21 and up. The Stage is located in Silver Star Smokehouse. OUTHOUSETICKETSCOM 6ENUE4HE?3TAGE?AT?3ILVER?3TAR

ABA Finals

!PRILĂ? Ă?sĂ?(IRSCHĂ?#OLISEUM Ă?3HREVEPORT Catch the excitement of pro basketball as the undefeated Shreveport-Bossier City Mavericks host the 2014 ABA National Championship Finals, April 10-15, at Hirsch Memorial Coliseum. Playoff competition begins, April 10-11, with Final Four action heating up on Saturday, April 12 and National Championship games taking place, April 13-15. For more information, visit WWWABAMAVERICKSCOM or call (254) 592-3662.

Lumpy Grits: A Literary and Lyrical Mix

Music in the park

!PRILĂ? Ă?sĂ?%ASTĂ?"ANKĂ?4HEATRE Ă?"OSSIERĂ?#ITY Described as “a literary and lyrical mix,â€? Lumpy Grits is a local performing arts group that showcases local talent through literary, musical, lyrical, visual and culinary aspects. Regular admission $10 or wear neon and save $5 off admission. Event begins at 8 p.m. For more information call (318) 464-4280. WWWLUMPYGRITSBLOGSPOTCOM

3AT Ă?!PRILĂ?Ă?sĂ?3OUTHERNĂ?(ILLSĂ?0ARK Ă?3HREVEPORT Local bands The Bluebirds and The Eric Craig Band will perform great music and entertainment from 2-6 p.m. A family affair with lots of activities: arts and crafts, Pet Education Project, fun games and prizes, bouncy house, and great food. Caddo 3HERIFFĂ?REPRESENTATIVES Ă?lREĂ?STATIONĂ?WITHĂ?AĂ?lREĂ? truck, book mobile, and more. Free admission. 318-834-7179. /UR3((!ORG

40th Anniversary Spring

Shreveport Opera presents Turandot

Bloom Celebration

3AT Ă?!PRILĂ?Ă?sĂ?!MERICANĂ?2OSEĂ?#ENTER Celebrate the 40th Annual Spring Bloom at the Gardens of the American Rose Center, 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Saturday, April 12. Enjoy the quarterly Green Thumb Seminar, featuring presentations on famous %NGLISHĂ?ROSEĂ?GARDENS Ă?ASĂ?WELLĂ?ASĂ?GREATĂ?NEWĂ?mOWERSĂ? for your landscape and garden ornaments. For additional information, call (318) 938-5402. WWWGREENTHUMBSEMINARSCOM

!PRIL��s�2IVER6IEW�4HEATER �3HREVEPORT Puccini recounts the legend of a bloodthirsty princess whose icy heart softens as she comes to know true love. The lyrical score features many memorable melodies. Stunning pageantry, passionate confrontations, the famous riddle scene, and one of opera’s most powerful kisses make Turandot a monumental achievement not to be missed. 7:30 p.m. WWWSHREVEPORTOPERAORG

West Side story 4HU Ă?!PRILĂ?Ă?sĂ?3TRANDĂ?4HEATRE Ă?3HREVEPORT West Side Story returns in a groundbreaking new production of one of the most memorable musicals and greatest love stories of all time. The score is widely considered to be one of the best ever written. The addition of extraordinary choreography makes West Side Story an enduring classic. WWWTHESTRANDTHEATRECOM

Barksdale Air Show

!PRILĂ? Ă?sĂ?"ARKSDALEĂ?!&" Ă?"OSSIER The Barksdale Air Force Base Air Show allows Shreveport-Bossier City to showcase the home of the B-52, grant access to tour the military installation, view military and aerobatic performers, and support the recruiting arm of our armed forces. For additional information please call 318-456-6955. WWWBARKSDALEAFBAIRSHOWCOM

Shreveport-Bossier Convention and Tourist Bureau, 629 Spring St., Shreveport, LA, 800-551-8682 April 2014 • Biz. Magazine


Business Etiquette

The ‘Wearable’ Tool


Women in business should be aware of their wardrobe choices t’s time for warm weather wardrobes! In cooler months, colors, patterns, and fabric amount tend to be more conservative. Warmer weather means less fabric and brighter colors. Women enjoy a greater variety of clothing types and styles than are available to men in the business arenas. For women, the ability to express ourselves as professionals AND women through our attire is something we value.

Teri Haynes Owner of Business Interactions, LLC Employee trainer and business etiquette coach www.BusinessInteractions.Net

26 Biz. Magazine • April 2014

Yet, this time of year brings numerous telephone calls from Human Resource managers. Why? Because some people forget to apply the word “appropriate” when determining what to wear to work. What is “appropriate” when we talk about business attire? The answer is rarely simple. A onesize-fits-all approach won’t work for every office because of these and other factors: climate, ethnicity or culture, industry, work environment, location, corporate brand and image, and office/location size. Large corporate offices may expect a more tradi-

tionally professional appearance than a credit union branch in a farming community. Consider construction and factory clothes compared to the attire in law offices and wealth management firms.

and respect you will have.

Another consideration is the appropriate effect your clothing choices have on yourself and other people. Just like your smart phone and laptop, business clothes are a tool. Do you choose your clothes to have the desired effect for that day’s events? When leading a meeting, a dark suit can make you look more authoritative. Feeling down and need to be enthusiastic for the sales pitch? Bright colors can lift your mood. Pink will further diminish a timid person’s influence, yet nicely tone down an aggressive person’s appearance. Also think moderation. A yellow blouse may look cheerful and confident; a yellow dress may look like a school bus.

n Revealing and sexy clothes reflect disrespect for yourself, coworkers, and company. Once you are viewed as a sex object, it will be extremely hard to get noticed for your intellect. But, if you dress like the office cougar, people may assume you have no intellect anyway.

Here are several “rules” to consider in your office clothing choices. n The more skin you show, the less influence

n Feet should be covered. At work, no one wants to see your feet. Seriously. It can be visually unattractive, unsanitary, and a potential safety risk.

n Business attire is never dirty, sloppy, wrinkled or worn-out, unless you work in a tattoo parlor or skateboard shop. You tell people how to treat you by how you present yourself. If someone gave you a tool guaranteed to improve your chance of success, would you use it? Use your wearable business tool!


BIZ. Newz

Things are ‘POP-ping’ Up Downtown

o you have a business that you have been thinking of expanding to an additional location? Do you have a home or part-time business you think would fly full-time in a highly visible storefront? The Downtown Shreveport Development Corporation & Downtown Development Authority, Citizens National Bank and the City of Shreveport want to make your business dreams come true! Five businesses will be chosen to take part in the very first regional Pop UP Project in downtown Shreveport in May. Businesses to be considered will range from everything from bakeries to BBQ, bowling alleys to flying cars. Businesses that are already established in the Ark-La-Tex are encouraged to apply as are aspiring entrepreneurs with new retail businesses that they are currently running out of their homes. Each business chosen will be given two weeks of free rent at a storefront in the Red River District. (Future Pop UP Projects will be hosted in other parts of downtown). As part

of the event, the business will receive free regional marketing & PR, business banking advice from Citizens National Bank, professional photographic services to show their products in the best possible light, and a soft opening event to introduce them to the community. “We first saw Pop Ups in action during the intergovernmental trip to Birmingham, Ala., organized by Mayor Glover in 2013,” says Liz Swaine, executive director of the DSDC/DDA. “Birmingham was having great success at using Pop ups to animate vacant storefronts, increase pedestrian traffic, and match property owners with businesses and entrepreneurs. It was a win-win for everyone involved.” “What takes our Pop UP Project to a new level is the inclusion of Citizens National Bank as a partner. All businesses need solid business banking advice and with Citizens NB on board, we can now provide that.” “The Downtown Pop UP Project is an exciting and innovative way to give businesses a non-traditional way to showcase their

products and services,” says Vice President Kim Bailey. “Citizens National Bank is deeply committed to Downtown Shreveport and supporting small businesses. We are honored to have the opportunity to be involved.”

Citizens National Bank will be involved throughout 2014 which will include the initial Pop UP in the Red River District, a Pop UP in the fall in the Central Business District and possibly, and a shorter holiday Pop UP in Shreveport Common. “The Mayor, City of Shreveport and Downtown Shreveport Development Corporation are to be commended for bringing this project together. It is these types of collaborative partnerships that make our community special,” says Jason Smith, Citizens National Bank Executive Vice President. Those who wish to learn more about the Downtown Pop UP Project should go to: or to the Pop UP blog at: Applications for participation in the Pop UP Projects will be available at those two locations or by calling (318)222-7403 or emailing

April 2014 • Biz. Magazine


BIZ Newz

Chamber: Entertainment revving up for Spring Continued From Page 23

just for nights. Day clubs allow you to have the same fun while the sun is still up. DARE will be the place to have fun and be seen every weekend.

DiamondJacks Casino & Hotel DiamondJacks’ main focus for 2014 is on our entertainment. We are hoping to bring some great acts to the area. We have a great variety of local bands that showcase in Agave on the weekends, as well as headliner entertainment live in Legends Theatre. We will be featuring headliner acts each month from a wide range of genres. Some performances coming up in April and May areTravis LeDoyt: Worlds Best Young Elvis on April 19; Chee Weez on April 26; Diamond Rio on May 10; and for a fun ladies night out/bachelorette party scene we have Hunks: The Show on May 31! You can purchase tickets at and see a full list of shows through July on our website We are excited about the entertainment we have in line for this year and hope our guests will be too!

Margaritaville With summer right around the corner, Mar-

garitaville Resort Casino is gearing up for some exciting events. Rock out to the classic tunes from Grammy Award Winner Boz Scaggs on April 24th. If you’re in the mood for something a little edgy and downright naughty, then Thom Kaz has what you’re looking for with his uncensored hypnotic comedy show. Hypnaughty appears every Friday night in the Paradise Theater. What would summer be without a POOL PARTY? Premiering May 1st, H2OT will be the area’s hottest yet coolest spot to hang out. Every Thursday night “dress down” and bring your friends to Margaritaville’s pool. Our pool side boast the best river views with nothing standing in your way of a good time. Speaking of time, my how it flies, we are coming up on our 1 year anniversary of being part of the community and providing exciting new options for our guests. Since we opened in June, we have added a High Limit slot room and now provide 100X odds on Craps. We are continually adding in new slot machines that include some of the most popular $1 slot games in this area. For more information on these and other exciting events and specials, call 1-855-FIN-CITY (346-2489) or visit our website at

Millennials Identified

Photo Courtesy of Mollie Corbett Photography The March edition of BIZ. featured photos of several local millennials. However, we did not provide the indentities of the individuals pictured. Pictured here are Allison Young Boehm of AFLAC and Kourtney Washington of ANECA Federal Credit Union. We apologize for the omission.

28 Biz. Magazine • April 2014

Quarterly Q uarterly P Publication ublication fr ffrom rom tthe he B Bossier ossier Ch C Chamber hamber of Co C Commerce ommerce ı Mar M March arch 2014


Opening the Doors to New Opportunities at the 66th Annual Gala Nearly 600 members of Northwest Louisiana’s business community packed the Centur yLink Center for the Bossier Chamber’s 66th Annual Gala. The evening ’s theme titled “Opening Doors to New Opportunities” was selected to celebrate the Bossier Chamber’s success and highlight the vision of the coming 2014 year. Bossier Parish is an attractive place to do business and the Chamber challenged investors to take advantage of the economic and business ooppportunities that aw await this region in the coming years. Jason Smith, 2013 Chairman of the Board, welcomed the incoming Chairman, Jim Henderson, Chancellor of Bossier Parish Community College. The outgoing and incoming Board of Directors were recognized, and g uests received the 2013 Work. Annual Report and Program of Wo

Each year, the Chamber recognizes the business community and those that excelled in areas of leadership, growth and involvement. The coveted award for Business of the Yea Year was extended to Builders Supply ly.. Business Person of the Yea Year went to David Alvis, owner of Silverstar Smoke House. The follo low wing list contains the evening ’s finalist for 2013 Business and Business Person of the Yea Year and additional aw award winners: • Golden Pinea neappple Aw Award - Caroline Gardner, Goodwill of Northwest Louisiana Year – Shreveport • Militar y Supporter of the Yea Bossier Convention and Tou Tourist Bureau Year – Cliff • Community Partner of the Yea Broussard, Willis Knighton Health System • Diplomat of the Yea Year – Sherr y Stuckey

Right: 2013 Chairman of the Board, Jason Smith awards Carlton, Bill and Grady Golden of Builders Supply. Left: 2013 Chairman of the Board, Jason Smith with Business Person of the Year Year, David Alvis.

CHRISTUS Schumpert Expands Cancer Treatment Center to Bossier CHRISTUS Health Shreveport-Bossier is exp expanding its cancer care and passion for personalized care to Bossier City. Starting in A Appril, the CHRISTUS Health Cancer Tr Treatment Center – Bossier will open its doors at the CHRISTUS Healthplex on Vik ikiing Drive. Last May CHRISTUS announced plans for a $55 million exp expansion of the Highland campus, focus on reaching growing areas of the community, and the addition of primar y care physicians to the medical staff. CHRISTUS is committed to meeting the needs of the Shreveport-Bossier community, and the new satellite cancer treatment center in Bossier will reach those patients who had to travel to Shreveport receive care. Because of this new clinic, we are able to meet the needs of our patients and provide better access and availability to those who live in the Bossier area. Our mission is to “extend the healing ministr y of Jesus Christ.” From the personalized care the physicians and medical staff provide to the flowers and milkshakes the volunteers give patients, CHRISTUS embodies this mission with ever y patient that walks through the door. At CHRISTUS Health Cancer Tr Treatment Center, our physicians and staff treats the patient, not just the disease. The new clinic will offer hematolog y and oncolog y clinics, chemotherapy and infusion ser vices. To To schedule an appointment or to make a self-referral, call 318-681-4138.

Business After Hours 4th Quarter Hosts Thank you to the 4th quarter hosts of the Bossier Chamber’s Business After Hours networkkiing events: Hilton Garden Inn and Vog ue Photo Pod (October Host), Barksdale Federal Credit Union (November Host), and Sudden Link,Virginia College, Chesa hesappeake Energ y and Gibsland Bank and T Trrust (December Hosts) of the Bossier Chamber Christmas Cheer held at the Lakehouse at the Villagio. Networkkiing should play a part in your business plan. Here are the top three reasons you should join the Bossier Chamber of Commerce at networking events: Knowledge Sharing – Networkkiing events provide the perfect atmosphere for conversation. It’ t’ss a great setting to ask business peers for feedback on projects or to gain a different point of view on a subject. More than likely ely,, there will be a community of people who have shared similar exp experiences and can lend advice. Opportunities – You You may have noticed that the Bossier Chamber has been talkkiing a lot about opportunity this year! These opportunities can come in the form of a referral, partnership or request for your ser vice or product. It is important to be ready to seize opportunities when they come along. Connections – Building connections helps helps your business gain exp exposure. Also, attendees may have a need that matches your business, if you have made an impression , you will likely get a referral.

April 2014 • Biz. Magazine

Special Section - Produced in Partnership with the Bossier Chamber of Commerce

BossierChamber Bossier Chamber Bulletin Bull lleetin


Special Section - Produced in Partnership with the Bossier Chamber of Commerce

Looking To the Future - With a Whole New Look

The Bossier Chamber of Commerce has partnered with Kalmbach Smith Meadows (KSM) to develop our new logo. The concept of the pinwheel came out of the Bossier Innovates campaign, a regional branding initiative launched in 2013. The new logo showcases the Chamber’s innovative spirit and

represents forward thinking from our leadership, community and region. As Bossier Parish and Northwest Louisiana moves into the future we invite you to join with us in embracing innovation and opportunity, advocating for our membership and community, and partnering across industry sectors in order to make Bossier Parish a great place to live and work.

Bossier Chamber Welcomes New Staff of BPCC with an Associate’s The Bossier Chamber of degree in Telecommunications Commerce has added two with a Concentration in new staff members this Television Production. quarter. The Chamber She spent time attending is proud to welcome LSU-S with a focus Ginger Collier, Director on public relations of Communication and and was a reporter for Whitney Harris, Public Ginger Collier their news publication, Policy Assistant. Director of The Almagest. She Ginger Collier Communications recently graduated oversees the marketing from Louisiana Tech where she and communications efforts of earned BA of Liberal the Chamber. Collier Arts and Sciences in earned a BA in Public General Studies and Relations from the Humanities. Whitney University of Louisiana at Lafayette. Ginger worked for six years at Texas Street Steakhouse brings experience in before joining the the areas of brand Whitney Harris management, graphic Public Policy Assistant Bossier Chamber team. Whitney will apply her design and media relations. She has primarily customer service training from the service industry with her worked in non-profit and served journalism background to her as director of communication in new position here at the Bossier her previous positions. Chamber. Whitney Harris is a graduate

Preferred Military Merchant Guide Goes Digital Just in time for the holiday season shopping blitz, the Bossier Chamber launched the Digital Preferred Military Discount Directory. Previously a printed directory, the now exclusively online program is a resource for military members to find local businesses who offer discounts to them and their families in recognition of their service to our country. Launched in the fall of 2011, the printed resource quickly outgrew its pages with continuous additions of new

businesses offering discounts. The overwhelming response following the inception of the program led to the present day online digital formatting, which allows for the directory to be kept up-to-date in real time. This project is supported and made possible through a partnership with local businesses, the Bossier Chamber of Commerce, the Greater Shreveport Chamber of Commerce and the ShreveportBossier Convention and Tourist Bureau.

BossierChamber Bulletin · March 2014 30 Biz. Magazine • April 2014

Final Installment of Pancakes and Politics Focused on Immigration Reform An informational forum and community conversation focusing on immigration legislation and reform was held as part of the Bossier Chamber’s Pancakes and Politics series. Lisa Atkins, Director of Immigration Policy for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce joined the community seminar via Skype. The event was hosted at the Hilton Garden Inn in Bossier City where members of the business community gathered for a Q & A session to learn more about the complex legislation proposed for 2014. Atkins led discussion on several key topics slated for debate in the 2014 session.

The issues affecting reform highlighted during the event discussion are directly related to workforce development, higher education and safe harbor laws. With Louisiana leading the nation with the second highest ratio of immigrant entrepreneurs, the forum was the first of many conversations pertaining to immigration laws and reform to be hosted by the Bossier Chamber of Commerce. Among event attendees were several community dignitaries including Mayor Lorenz Walker of Bossier City, and State Representative Patrick Williams.

Smith Honored at Annual Chairman’s Dinner On Tuesday, January 21, the Bossier Chamber honored outgoing Chairman of the Board, Jason Smith, at the annual Chairman’s Dinner. Members of the Bossier Chamber Maj. Gen. Robert Rego, Trish Rego, Dana and Kem Smelser, Lt. Col. Mark Otis gathered at the Chairman’s staff, Executive Committee as well Dinner to celebrate outgoing Chairman, Jason Smith. as Mayor Walker of Bossier City and ranking officers from Barksdale Air Force Base were there to celebrate the many successes for the organization under Smith’s leadership. Under Smith’s tenure as Chairman of the Board during 2013, the Chamber received 4-Star Accreditation and is ranked among the top three Chambers in the country. The Chamber also celebrated the 20 year anniversary of the Bossier Youth Leadership Program and launched Bossier Innovates, a regional branding initiative as a part of the 2013 successes.

3DUWQHULQJIRU3URÀWDQG3XUSRVH In the fall of 2014 the Bossier Chamber will launch a new initiative aimed at bringing more visibility and exposure to the Bossier Chamber membership. This initiative will help to bring new and exciting programs to the Bossier Chamber and strengthen your business. More details to come soon. The Bossier Chamber represents a diverse group of businesses in the region. This

diverse group of businesses is a part of our membership because they believe in the efforts we put forth to connect business to business. We happen to believe that in our organization every member is provided an opportuntiy to take part in the advocacy, partnerhip and innovation we offered through our membership. Look for details in the later part of 2014.

Jim Henderson Chairman Bossier Chamber

The Bossier Chamber has been involved in the growth and development of ly,, we have been engaged in several the community for over 60 years. More recently key developments that will help to continue to make our community a vibrant, innovative leader in the region. I am convinced the Bossier Chamber can help accelerate and sustain a level of growth in our regional economy that will greatly benefit our membership and, by extension, the community at large. You Your engagement and leadership as members are essential to ensuring this organization is the effective instrument for progress we kno now w it can be. I look for ward to ser ving the Chamber in the coming year and building on the great momentum we’ve built as a community.

SAVE S AVE THE D DATE ATE boss ie r chamber bossier c h ambe r golf g o lf classic c l a ss ic

Bossier Chamber Urges Community to Share Region’s Story, Promote Quality of Life The Bossier Chamber is workkiing to help ensure that Northwest Louisiana is portrayed in the best light possible. There are many facets of our city’s culture we must share with the Lisa Johnson wider community Bossier Chamber and abroad. The President/CEO creation of tools such as the website Bossier Innovates will helpp us package these messages of culture, hel innovation, quality of life and help help to grow our local economy. The Chamber partnered with the Cyber Innovation Center for the launch of this

project, but intends the site to be an instrumental tool for the community and those lookkiing to relocate to the area. Over the years, many residents have left the area in pursuit of better jobs. The new site is a formal way to showcase our innovative spirit

while streng thening economic partnerships and developing community connections by connecting past and fu future residents of the region. The site displays a comprehensive look at life in Bossier and NWLA, featuring aspects from work to play, learning , and living in our Use sers will have an interactive tool to region. U

help g uide them when making decisions on coming back to the area. Producing messaging such Bossier Innovates plays an important role in furthering the voice of Bossier Parish. This campaign is an extension of the Chamber’s Alumni Initiative which aims to connect highly-skilled out-of-area professionals with innovative careers in Bossier Parish. The Bossier Chamber is ask skiing our community leaders and partners to help spread our region’s message. Get engaged by sharing stories you see on our social media platforms. Share your stories of innovation within your industr y. Connect with us online at our website at or “Like” us on Facebook to see stories of innovative happenings in our great region.

Special Section - Produced in Partnership with the Bossier Chamber of Commerce

A Message from the Bossier Chamber Chairman

Bossier Chamber Supports Transitioning Veterans Through Military Relations Efforts Air Force Chief of Staff aff,, General Mark A. Welsh Welsh III stated last year that the “long-term impacts of sequestration could force the ser vice to cut about 25,000 Airmen over the next five years.” Gen. Monique Roux W elsh’s prediction Business Development & Militar y Relations appears to be a reality as the Air Force has already beg un to implement various force shaping measures. Other branches of the militar y are being hit even harder, such as the Army having to reduce its force by nearly 60,000 soldiers. The local impact of Air Force reduction in ser vice members is currently unknown because leadership has initiated a voluntar y phase of this plan to allo low w members that are currently eligible to separate or retire to

do so, along with opportunities for some individuals who are near retirement to do so early ly.. The aappplication process at the Air Force Headquarters level has slowed due to the response of the initial force shaping programs. The negative effect of this is that Airmen who were willing to retire or separate are having to wait to accept any job offers while the branch pauses its separation processing. Employers are encouraged to be as patient as possible with these transitioning members while they wait on their paper work to be processed so that they can accept a civilian job. For the Bossier-Shreveport community, this is going to have a large effect on our available workforce. We We will have a highly trained, well-ex expperienced group of people that are out of work and need to find a means to support themselves and their fa families, while also learning to transition from militar y to civilian life. Airmen of all ranks are already staring down their last thirty days in the force and will be makkiing that transition ver y soon.

Others are waiting on their paper work to be processed before they can accept any job offers, which requires patience from both the ser vice member and the hiring companies. Our community is already so well known for being one of the best militar y supportive communities in the countr y and now is the time to stand behind that accolade by being prepared to help in this transition process. The Bossier Chamber of Commerce is being proactive in this process by continuing to support the transitioning veteran through militar y focused job fa fairs, the first of which will be held on Ap April 3rd. We We are workkiing closely with several local organizations to offer resume and inter view worksho shops ps which will help help local ser vice members market their skills and abilities. Additionally ly,, the Bossier Chamber will coordinate transitional workshops aimed at educating the militar y workforce on important aspects of civilian life.

BossierChamber Bossier Chamber Bulletin Bull lleetin · M Mar March arch 2014 April 2014 • Biz. Magazine


Special Section - Produced in Partnership with the Bossier Chamber of Commerce




710 Benton Benton R Road oad · B Bossier ossier C City, ity, L LA A 71111 E EMAIL M AIL WE WEB B www www.b · www.b www

The Bossier Chamber of Commerce held their second annual Tie’n Up Business 5K 10K on Saturday, March 8, at CHRISTUS Athletic Club-Bossier. The event also featured a Kids’ 1 Mile Fun Run. Over 100 participants came out to run with the Chamber. Runners were encouraged wear business attire to the event such as ties and dress shirts.






April 3rd · 9 a.m.

May 30th · 11 a.m.

Veterans’ Job & Resource Fair Bossier Civic Center

Tee time time at 12 p.m. Bossier Chamber Golf Classic Around the Wo World in 18 Holes Cultural Golf Exp Experience Palmetto Countr y Club

Militar y Speaker Luncheon Hilton Garden Inn, Bossier City 11:30 - 1 p.m. · Date TBD Wrap Up Up · Date Legislative Wr TBD


32 Biz. Magazine • April 2014

BIZ Spotlight

Andrew Nations pours a draft beer in Great Raft Brewing Company's tasting room at their brewery in Shreveport. The native moved back from Washington DC to start the first brewery in Shreveport since Prohibition.

Giving the SBC ‘Real Beer’


Great Raft Brewing Company aims to educate, stimulate locals with products

new Shreveport brewery believes northwest Louisiana should “Drink Real Beer. You deserve it.” The motto of Great Raft Brewing Company, the local brewery opened late last year and currently produces 7 beers that can be found in local stores and restaurants. Founded by Andrew and Lindsay Nations, Great Raft Brewing Company’s goal is to create fresh craft beer that complements the lifestyles and cultures of Louisiana. The company wants to change the way people think about beer with consistent greatness and even go so far as to create an easy-going learning environment. “A big part of what we do at Great Raft is education about beer, styles, flavors, etc. Our tasting room gives us the opportunity to engage directly with the consumer – to not only educate but receive feedback,” said Andrew. The path to creating Shreveport-Bossier’s newest brewery began with Andrew homebrewing for five years in his spare time while paying the bills as Operations and IT Project Management for national companies in Washington DC. Lindsay

served as assistant brewer to Andrew’s homebrewing, and currently works in Marketing and Strategic Planning for Cisco Systems. “My wife and I started Great Raft Brewing because we wanted to bring our passion for beer to our hometown. We fell in love with beer while we were living in Washington, DC, and saw a great need for fresh, local, high-quality beers in northwest Louisiana.” Great Raft Brewing was founded on the principle of brewing “Real Beer.” This means brewing with creativity, passion, and authenticity — Great Raft Brewing Co.’s beers are brewed with creativity that pushes the boundaries of style, a passion for greatness, and authentic, quality ingredients. This high standard of production obviously requires dedication and overcoming daily obstacles. But for Great Raft to even open their doors, there were obstacles to overcome. Particularly when you consider Shreveport’s absence of a brewery since Prohibition. With that in mind, Andrew’s course of action was simple:

communication. “We set realistic goals and timeframes for our project,” he said. “We knew there would be questions along the way. We engaged with the involved city groups and decisions makers early and often. Clear, open, early communication seemed to help keep things moving.” After being away from his hometown, to returning to invest in it and enrich its culture, Andrew has unique advice to offer to fellow entrepreneurs. “We were diligent about partnering with great people to help us navigate the process of starting a complex business. Partnering with experienced professionals can seem costly for a startup, however, it is critical to have a mentor or consultant to help validate your plan and advise along the way,” he said. “The best advice I can give is to do your homework, but also find a trusted advisor within your field.”

April 2014 • Biz. Magazine






On the playing field or financial field team matters. That’s why when it came time for me to pick a bank, I chose GBT. The great team at GBT helped me pick the accounts and services that fit my needs. And they’ll continue to help as my needs grow and change. From the friendly service to the wide range of products, this is one special team. And I know a little something about special teams.


Jacob Hester


SHREVEPORT (318) 688-7005

ARCADIA (318) 263-8477

MINDEN (318) 371-9910

BOSSIER (318) 752-2727

ATHENS (318) 258-3123

MINDEN–Wal Mart (318) 382-1223

GIBSLAND (318) 843-6228

HOMER (318) 927-5075

SIBLEY (318) 371-9465

Biz. Magazine • April 2014


P M t m

H c

Lunch Break

Chris Jay reviews local food every Tuesday at

Slap-Your-Momma Good


Rhino Coffee knocks it out of the park with stews ince it opened in 2012, I’ve regarded the South Highlands coffee house Rhino Coffee as a genuinely beautiful place to grab a cup of coffee, meet up with friends or catch some live music (their live music programming, by the way, is incredible). But, if I am being honest, I’d never considered Rhino Coffee as one of the city’s best places to eat – until recently. We need to talk about the soups and stews that are coming out of that kitchen. Because they are, sincerely, some of the best in Shreveport-Bossier. Only available 5-9 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday, the beef stew Marsala and the chicken pot pie are both profoundly good.

Chris Jay Public Relations and Social Media Manager, Shreveport Bossier Convention and Tourist Bureau. He is a monthly contributor to Biz. Magazine. He may be reached via email at

General Manager Pat Bolling (who, I should say, is quick to point out that other team members like Whitney Turner create the coffee house’s popular scones and baked goods) is the man behind both of those stews. After eating the beef stew Marsala and the chicken pot pie on back-to-back trips, I asked for an audience with Mr. Bolling. I wanted to tell him that, had my beloved mama been sit-

ting across from me when I first tasted that beef stew, I may have slapped her.

termilk at supermarkets anymore. So, I make it. I grabbed one of our baristas the other day and said ‘I’m fixin’ to show you how to make buttermilk!’”

“This is as close to my grandmother’s recipe as I can get it,” Bolling said of the beef stew, a Maybe it was the joyful postrustic-style stew with large meal haze brought on by that chunks of beef, new potatoes, beef stew, but I could have lisbaby portobello mushrooms, tened to this guy talk about celery, garlic and more. The cooking all day long. stew, which has a spicy kick, cooks for 12 hours and is A few quick pieces of business: served with a side salad and a The soups and stews made by slab of outstanding, slightly Mr. Bolling are not presently sweet buttermilk cornbread. I listed on the menu. That, to me, Pat Bolling, general manager and polished off the cornbread and stewmaster at Rhino Coffee in is an omission akin to not menShreveport. wanted more – why, I wontioning the tigers on a map of dered, was this cornbread so the zoo, but trust me – they’re good? there. Served as entrees, they cost about $9 and, while serving size may not be “Hell, I make the buttermilk that goes in that large enough for some of the heartier eaters out cornbread,” Bolling said nonchalantly, as if that’s there, it’s entirely possible that you’ll just the way you do that. “They don’t sell real butgladly order and pay for a second bowl.

April 2014 • Biz. Magazine


“The Shrevepor looks out ffoor t of business in t community in a w tha hatt no indiv id business can.” Johnette Ma Magner, Ph.D. Executive Director, Shrevepor t-Bossier B Bu usiness Allian

Join the more than 1700 businesses enjoying the many benefits of Chambe membership. It’s our job to drive indus growth by promoting, advocating and celebrating your business. We concen


on the fundamental challenges busine face and provide solutions to overcom those challenges and succeed in the


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BIZ. Magazine April 2014  

The April 2014 edition of BIZ. Magazine, featuring 20 years of gaming in Shreveport-Bossier.

BIZ. Magazine April 2014  

The April 2014 edition of BIZ. Magazine, featuring 20 years of gaming in Shreveport-Bossier.