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Winter 2016, Volume 92, Number 4

From the


Show the World What LSU’s Excellence Means LSU is upping our offense – and I’m not talking about football. Our university has long held a reputation for being a little humble when it comes to talking about our academic excellence, but that’s no longer the case. We have provided both Louisiana and our nation with solutions for the most pressing problems faced by society … and we want more people outside of our campus gates to know about the extraordinary things our faculty and staff do each and every day. For instance, did you know that LSU has impact on every parish in the state through education, research and outreach? Or that, aside from our $3.9 billion economic impact on the state, we also provide teacher training, agricultural outreach and support, and free medical testing and screening to rural areas? Or that our faculty produce 59 percent of all federally funded research conducted in Louisiana and 60 percent of the invention disclosures and patents granted in our state? That means more than half of the work being done to improve our citizens’ daily lives through medical advances, improved hurricane protection, safer roadways, and a stronger coast come from LSU.

Recent examples of LSU’s broad spectrum of excellence include: • The LSU Center for Coastal Resiliency recently received $1.3 million in grants to support critical research to protect coastal communities. • LSU senior and Pineville native Zachary Faircloth was named as a finalist for the Rhodes Scholarship, the oldest and most celebrated international fellowship award in the world. • For the tenth consecutive year, LSU was named to the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll. As an alum, you know firsthand the value of an LSU degree. And you can join us in this effort. Tell everyone you know about LSU’s exceptional academic achievements. Tell them that our faculty are among the most sought-after in the world. Our students are internationally competitive, winning more prestigious awards than Ivy League students and getting handson, practical experience from some of the best experts in their respective fields. Tell them your own accomplishments, the ones you made supported by the value your LSU degree provides. And remind them of the power of our network of more than 170,000 Tigers has on the world. Let’s get out there and roar, Tigers. Show the world what LSU’s excellence really means.


F. King Alexander LSU President @lsuprez

LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016


Publisher LSU Alumni Association


Editor Jackie Bartkiewicz Advertising Kelsey David Art Director Chuck Sanchez STUN Design & Interactive

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In Each Issue 1 4 6 38 50 52 58

From the President President/CEO Message LSU Alumni Association News Around Campus Focus on Faculty Sports Tiger Nation

Bringing Home to Campus: Faculty Step Out of the Classroom and into the Residence Halls Design by STUN Design & Interactive

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Printing Baton Rouge Printing NATIONAL BOARD OF DIRECTORS Jan K. Liuzza Chair, Kenner, La. Leo C. Hamilton Chair-Elect, Baton Rouge, La.


Fred G. “Gil” Rew Immediate Past Chair, Mansfield, La. Jack A. Andonie Director Emeritus, Metairie, La. Lodwrick M. Cook Director Emeritus, Sherman Oaks, Calif.

32 Tigers to the Rescue – and Recovery! When those in need were at their worst, Tigers were at their best. In true LSU spirit, thousands of alumni and friends volunteered to assist those affected by the summer flood in South Louisiana. And thousands more across the country responded to recovery efforts with generous donations. Share the pride in LSU Tiger Nation through photos and accounts of lending a helping hand in FLOOD.

Contributors Barry Cowan, Ed Cullen, Rachel Emmanuel, John Grubb, Lauren Heffker, Bud Johnson, Brenda Macon, Sara Ruane, Meg Ryan Photography Pam Blackwell, Ray Dry, Steve Franz/LSU Athletics, Johnny Gordon, Larry Hubbard, Eddy Perez/LSU Strategic Communications, Nioz Tabrizi, Alice Wack, Jim Zietz

24 Building Success: An East Side/West Side Story

For the past couple of decades, the LSU Department of Residential Life has been undergoing a long-term metamorphosis. One of the latest endeavors is the FacultyIn-Residence (FIR) program – in short, professors and their families live on campus and interact with students outside the classroom every day of the week. Meet eastsiders Clint and Kay Willson in Laville Hall and westsiders Belinda and Dan Davis– and their three boys – in the Residential College Complex to find out what it’s like for families living on campus.

Editorial Assistants Patti Garner, Karla Lemoine, Brenda Macon

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92, Number 4

Mary Lou Applewhite, New Orleans, La. Louis R. Minsky, Baton Rouge, La. Jon D. “Jay” Babb, Baton Rouge, La. A.J.M. Butch Oustalet III, Gulfport, Miss. Karen G. Brack, San Diego, Calif. Richard C. “Rick Oustalet, Jennings, La. Stephen T. “Steve” Brown, Sherman Oaks, Calif. Oliver G. “Rick” Richard III, Lake Charles, La. Randy L. Ewing, Quitman, La. Beverly G. Shea, New Iberia, La. Kathryn “Kathy” Fives, New Orleans, La. John T. Shelton, Jr, Houston, Texas Matthew K. Juneau, Baton Rouge, La. Susan K. Whitelaw, Shreveport, La. Kevin F. Knobloch, Baton Rouge, La. Van P. Whitfield, Houston, Texas Ted A. Martin, Baton Rouge, La. Stanley L. “Stan” Williams, Fort Worth, Texas LSU ALUMNI MAGAZINE is published quarterly in March, June, September, and December by the LSU Alumni Association. Annual donations are $50, of which $6 is allocated for a subscription to LSU Alumni Magazine. Approval of Periodicals Postage Paid prices is pending at Baton Rouge, La., and at additional mailing offices. The LSU Alumni Association is not liable for any loss that might be incurred by a purchaser responding to an advertisement in this magazine. Editorial and Advertising Office LSU Alumni Association 3838 West Lakeshore Drive Baton Rouge, LA 70808-4686 225-578-3838 • 888-RINGLSU / e-mail: © 2016 by LSU ALUMNI MAGAZINE. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to LSU ALUMNI MAGAZINE, 3838 West Lakeshore Drive, Baton Rouge, LA 70808-4686 Letters to the editor are encouraged. LSU ALUMNI MAGAZINE reserves the right to edit all materials accepted for publication. Publication of material does not indicate endorsement of the author’s viewpoint by the magazine, the Association, or LSU.

LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016


President and CEO


Living Our Core Values Teamwork & Excellence During the September 2016 Board of Directors retreat, the leadership of the LSU Alumni Association gathered to promote camaraderie, record decades of institutional knowledge, and set in motion a strategic planning initiative. These dedicated board members provide a wealth of knowledge, business acumen, energy, and stability. Your Association is in good hands with these men and women of great character. Members of the LSU Alumni Association Global Board of Directors, from left, seated, Dr. Mary Lou Applewhite, New Orleans; Dr. Louis Minsky, Baton Rouge; Dr. Jack Andonie, Metairie, La.; Jay Babb, Baton Rouge; Jan Liuzza, Kenner, La.; and John Shelton, Houston; standing, Stan Williams, Fort Worth, Texas; Leo Hamilton, Baton Rouge; Karen Brack, San Diego, Calif.; Matt Juneau, Baton Rouge; Steve Brown, Los Angeles; Kathy Fives, New Orleans; Cliff Vannoy, Baton Rouge; Susan Whitelaw, Bossier City, La.; Beverly Shea, New Iberia, La.; Kevin Knobloch, Baton Rouge, La.; Van Whitfield, Houston; Rick Richard, Lake Charles, La.; Randy Ewing, Quitman, La.; Ted Martin, Baton Rouge, La.; and Dr. Gil Rew, Shreveport, La. Not pictured, Lod Cook, Los Angeles; Butch Oustalet, Gulfport, Miss.; and Rick Oustalet, Jennings, La. Photo by Johnny Gordon

Selfless Service & Integrity LSU Tiger Nation responded wholeheartedly to recovery efforts during and after the devastating flooding in South Louisiana. Alumni chapters across the nation immediately sent supplies and donations. LSU family were among the incredible Cajun Navy, which rescued thousands of stranded Louisianans, and the Cajun Army, which spend days gutting houses, businesses, and churches. The rebuilding has begun. Thank you for paying it forward to those in need, and keep the flood victims in your prayers, as recovery is a long process.

Tradition The LSU Traveling Tigers, a thirty-two-year tradition of the Association, made history as 1,200 travelers descended on Green Bay, Wis., for the season opener against Wisconsin at Lambeau Field. Two years in the making, the four-day trip was a huge success. Share the experience through photos and messages on page 20.

Loyalty & Respect In surprise visits, we announced the 2017 Alumnus of the Year, Major General Glenn Curtis, adjutant general of Louisiana, and the Young Alumnus of the Year, Brandon Landry, co-founder and co-owner of Walk-On’s Enterprises. Visit – search 2017 LSU Hall of Distinction. Following those announcements, special delivery letters and follow-up telephone calls were made to four other distinguished alumni tapped for Hall of Distinction induction: former U.S. Senator Mary Landrieu, policy adviser with Van Ness Feldman, Washington, D.C.; Shelby McKenzie, of counsel with Taylor, Porter, Brooks & Phillips, Baton Rouge; Jake Netterville, chairman of the board emeritus of Postlethwaite & Netterville, Baton Rouge; and Dr. Charles Smith, LSU philanthropist and retired family medicine practitioner, Sulphur, La. They will be inducted at the LSU Alumni Association Hall of Distinction black-tie gala on April 7, 2017.

Communication On behalf of the Board of Directors and all of us at the Lod Cook Alumni Center and The Cook Hotel, thank you for your steadfast support and loyalty. Our hope for you is to enjoy the best that life offers in 2017.

Cliff Vannoy President and CEO

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LSU Alumni Association


LSU 2017 Hall of Distinction Alumnus of the Year, Young Alumnus of the Year Revealed Major General Glenn H. Curtis, Louisiana adjutant general, is the 2017 LSU Alumnus of the Year. The announcement was made Sept. 22 in a surprise visit to the Louisiana National Guard Franklinton Readiness Center, in Franklinton, La.

LSU Alumni Association President Cliff Vannoy, Jill Curtis, 2017 LSU Alumnus of the Year Major General Glenn H. Curtis, and Richard Jueanu.

LSU Alumni Association Vice President for Advancement Rhett Butler, President Cliff Vannoy, and 2017 Young Alumnus of the Year Brandon Landry. Photo by Johnny Gordon

Mary Landrieu.

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Curtis will be inducted into the LSU Alumni Association Hall of Distinction on April 7, 2017, along with Young Alumnus of the Year Brandon Landry, co-founder and co-owner of Walk-On’s Enterprises, and four other outstanding alumni. Also tapped for induction are former U.S. Senator Mary Landrieu, policy adviser with Van Ness Feldman, Washington, D.C.; Shelby McKenzie, of counsel with Taylor, Porter, Brooks & Phillips, Baton Rouge; Jake Netterville, chairman of the board emeritus of Postlethwaite & Netterville, Baton Rouge; and Dr. Charles Smith, retired family medicine practitioner, Sulphur, La. “We have about 270,000 LSU alumni around the world, and you have been selected as the 2017 Alumnus of the Year,” said LSU Alumni Association President Cliff Vannoy, making the announcement to Curtis. “I’m speechless. I’m not often at a loss for words, but I was totally at a loss for a moment,” Curtis said, sharing his recognition with the Louisiana National Guard. “I’m proud to be an alum. It’s an honor, and it has my name on it, but it really it belongs to the men and women of the Louisiana National Guard who risk life and limb and put their lives on hold to take care of our citizens. Curtis (1986 BACH AGR) has commanded the 11,500-member Louisiana National Guard (LNG) since 2011 through numerous natural disasters, most recently the 2016 floods. Curtis was commissioned in 1984 through the LNG Officer Candidate School after serving as an enlisted member of the Guard since 1982. Recognized with numerous awards and decorations during his career, he was inducted into the LSU Military Hall of Honor in 2009, received the General

Douglas MacArthur Award in 1989, was named Battalion Commander of the Year in 1999, and received a Business & Industry Top 40 Under 40 award in 2002. Curtis holds a master’s degree in strategic studies from U.S. Army War College. “Major General Glenn Curtis is a recognized expert in emergency preparedness and disaster relief, and he is known well beyond the borders of Louisiana,” said LSU President F. King Alexander in a prerecorded video. “It is a great honor for me to recognize Maj. Gen. Glenn Curtis as a member of the Hall of Distinction and as our Alumnus of the Year, the LSU Alumni Association’s highest award. Congratulations, Gen. Curtis.” Landry’s first business, Walk-On’s Bistreaux & Bar, founded in 2001, led to the creation of Happy’s Irish Pub and Walk-On’s Catering. Today, Landry (2001 BACH BUS) provides leadership for all three brands, which encompass ten properties, with five more on the drawing board from South Louisiana to West Texas. In 2015, NFL and New Orleans Saints quarterback star Drew Brees signed on as co-owner, driving virtually overnight success of Walk-On’s new franchising program. Landry’s recognitions include LRA Restaurateur of the Year; Baton Rouge Young Businessperson of the Year; Baton Rouge Business Report 40 Under 40; Louisiana Marketer of the Year; and ESPN’s Best Sports Bar in America. Landry serves on various nonprofit boards, and he gives generously to local communities. Landrieu (1977 BACH H&SS) began her public service career in 1979, when she was elected to the Louisiana State Legislature, the youngest woman ever elected. In 1987, she was elected state treasurer and served for two terms. After an unsuccessful race for governor, she was elected to the U.S. Senate in 1996 and served on the Armed Services Committee and Appropriations Committee and chaired the Small Business and the Energy and Natural Resources committees. Landrieu earned

a reputation as a tireless advocate for Louisiana. Among her accomplishments were passage of the Small Business Jobs Act, Gulf of Mexico Energy Security Act, Israel American Energy Alliance, and the RESTORE Act. McKenzie (1964 JD) has worked at Taylor Porter law firm for more than fifty years, for many years as managing partner. He was an adjunct professor law for more than thirty years and through Taylor Porter served as unofficial general counsel to LSU. After retiring from active practice, he served as interim general counsel to the LSU Board of Supervisors, President Emeritus William Jenkins, and President F. King Alexander. For his leadership and numerous contributions to LSU and to his profession, he was named a Law School Distinguished Alumnus in 2005 and was recognized as the 2011 Distinguished Louisiana Attorney by the Louisiana Bar Foundation. A graduate of University High School, McKenzie earned an undergraduate degree from Princeton. Netterville (1960 BACH BUS) was managing partner of Postlethwaite & Netterville for more than twenty years, during which time the P&N became one of the top 100 leading accounting firms in the country. He holds leadership roles in professional organizations at state and national levels and is a permanent member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants Governing Council. He is a member of the LSU Accounting Advisory Board, the E.J. Ourso College of Business Administration Partnership for Excellence Board, the LSU Dean’s Advisory Council, and is current chairelect of the Tiger Athletic Foundation. He has also held elected officer positions

Shelby McKenzie.

in numerous organizations, among them, the Baton Rouge Area Foundation, Council for a Better Louisiana, and Baton Rouge Area Chamber. Smith (1951 BACH H&SS, 1955 MD - New Orleans) practiced family medicine for thirty-five years and served as Calcasieu Parish coroner for more than twenty years. In retirement, he underwent cancer treatment that saved his life and in response established the Dr. Charles M. Smith Chair of Medical Physics in partnership with Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center. Following the creation of the chair, the program became one of only eleven accredited graduate medical physics programs of its kind. Smith serves on the College of Science Development Council and Executive Committee, and he is a charter member of the Dean’s Circle. He is a member of the LSU Foundation Laureate Society and LSU 1860 Society and a benefactor of the Methodist Home for Children in Sulphur.

Jake Netterville.

Dr. Charles Smith.

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LSU Alumni Association News

Chapter Events

Rhonda Armor, Emily George, Lisa Bunch, Julie Klibert, and Cheryl Fasullo. The Greater Houston Chapter “sends off” future alumni.

Jay Kumar poses with his Billy Cannon jersey.

LSU Bound signs and goody bags for new Tigers.

Summer Send Off – The Greater Houston Chapter hosted its fourth annual Summer Send-Off in August. New Tigers, along with their parents and friends, were welcomed into the LSU family by University representatives, volunteers, and Houstonarea alumni. On hand were Rhonda Armor, regional director of development; Darrell Ray, assistant vice president for Student Life & Enrollment Services; Emily George and Chrystal Cantrell, regional admissions counselors; and Lisa Bunch, president of the Greater Houston Chapter. “The event was sponsored by H.E.B., and we would like to give special thanks to Patrick Evans, chapter board advisory member, for his contribution and continued support,” writes Cheryl Fasullo. “The event was a great opportunity for LSU administrators, staff, and alumni to help students build new peer networks and to provide tips for success – and to show our new Texas Tigers what the LSU spirit is all about.”

Greg Lee presents a special auction item to Gary Haynes.

Jacob Hester, center, with Gary and Sarah Haynes.

Webster-Claiborne – More than 100 alumni, friends, and supporters were on hand

Assistant Vice President Tracy Jones, Roger Zachary, Gary Haynes, President Cliff Vannoy, Sarah Haynes, and Chapter Director BJ Bellow.

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to visit with LSU and NFL player Jacob Hester, guest speaker at the banquet following the Webster-Claiborne Chapter Golf Tournament & Fish Fry in July. The event was held at the Pine Hills Country Club. Future alums Brianna Coleman and Emily Addington each received $1,000 chapter-sponsored scholarships to LSU. Among the auction items were a signed Odell Beckham, Jr., jersey, a signed Billy Cannon jersey, a signed photo of Hester’s 2007 winning touchdown against Florida, and a framed photo of the late Crimson Tide star and LSU quarterback Freddie Haynes. Greg Lee, vice president of Gibsland Bank & Trust, was top bidder on the photo, which he presented to Freddie’s brother, Gary Haynes, chapter president. Taking top honors at the golf tourney were Casey Carter and Randy Soileau, winners of the first flight; Wood and Lawson Wilder, second flight; and Mike Wise and Benny de Pingré, third flight. In September, the chapter presented a check for $16,500 to the LSU Alumni Association for scholarship coffers.

Suzanne Trevillion, Cheryl Davis, Will Hennegan, LSU Alumni Association Vice President John Grubb, Don McGinty, Emily George, Angel Ardoin, Bryan Wesley, Lisa Bunch, Chase Zieman, Julie Klibert, and Tip Jenny.

Pulling for the Tigers – Greater Houston Chapter board members and contestants gathered in July at the American Shooting Centers in Houston for the annual Clay Shoot to raise money for the chapter’s scholarship fund.

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LSU Alumni Association News

Chapter Events

Geaux247 sports reporter Shea Dixon.

Jody and Cathy Denison-Robert, Leonard Gremillion, and Jerry Juneau.

Mike Smith, Ashleigh Gnat, and D-D Breaux.

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Young Tigers stole the show! From top left, Mackie Musgrove, Hunter and dad Danny Robinson, and Lily Kleinpeter showed off football fashions available at the Shelton Gift Shop.

Sports Kickoff – Nearly 200 footballready Tigers gathered at the Lod Cook Alumni Center in August for the Greater Baton Rouge Chapter’s annual Sports Kickoff Party. They were treated not only to a football preview but also updates on gymnastics and softball, tailgate fare, door prizes, and a style show featuring fall apparel and merchandise from the Shelton Gift Shop. Mike Smith, the “Voice of LSU Gymnastics,” emceed the event, which featured sports highlights by softball coach Beth Torina, gymnastics coach D-D Breaux and gymnast Ashleigh Gnat, and a football preview by Geaux247’s Shea Dixon. Photos by Mary Raudabaugh and Amy Parrino

Debi and Paul West, LSU Alumni Association President Cliff Vannoy, Chapter Director BJ Bellow, and Curtis Ward.

Dollars for Scholars – The Central Florida Alumni Chapter presented the LSU Alumni Association with an $18,000 check prior to the LSU vs. Jacksonville State game in September. The donation, raised during chapter-sponsored “Parties with a Purpose” such as its crawfish boil and golf tournament, supports the chapter’s scholarship fund for students from the Orlando area attending LSU.

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LSU Alumni Association News

Tureaud Chapter Baranco, LaVergne Named LSU Legends

By Rachel Emanuel Photos by Pam Blackwell

2016 LSU Legend Luke LaVergne; Shaun Mena, Legends Forum committee chair; and 2010 LSU Legend Mamye L. Hall, standing in for 2016 LSU Legend Juanita Powell Baranco.

Event sponsors, from left, Dereck Rovaris, vice provost for diversity; Maurice Kirksey, Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity; Gary Huntley, Entergy; Kenya Messer, chief diversity officer; Blaine Grimes, Campus Federal Credit Union; Terrell Carter, adviser, Phi Beta Sigma; Shaun Mena, LSU Legends forum committee chair; and Todd Schexnayder, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Louisiana, retired. Not pictured, James Williams, Paul M. Hebert Law Center, College of Humanities & Social Sciences, and Franklin & Associates.

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Leo C Hamilton, chair-elect of the LSU Alumni Association Board of Directors; scholarship winner Tayler B. Pierre; Todd Schexnayder, Tureaud Chapter treasurer; scholarship recipient Emaye M. Moss; Gary Huntley, president; Carolyn Collins, scholarship committee chair; and James Williams and Valencia Sarpy Jones, members of the LSU Board of Supervisors.

For the eighth year the A.P. Tureaud, Sr. Black Alumni Chapter hosted its annual LSU Legends Forum in September to honor achievements of black alumni, present chapter scholarships, and hear from alumni leaders on topics of the day. Juanita Powell Baranco (1973 BACH H&SS, 1977 JD), executive vice president and chief operating officer of Baran Company in Atlanta, Ga., and Luke A. LaVergne (1982 JD), retired East Baton Rouge Parish family court judge, were honored at 2016 LSU Legends. Baranco is a corporate executive noted for breaking race and gender barriers in Georgia, an entrepreneurial legend in Atlanta, and an avid supporter of education. She attended the first reunion of LSU black alumni in 1988, was a charter board member of the original Tureaud Chapter in 1990, and regularly attends chapter events. LaVergne is a distinguished U.S. military achiever, former member of the LSU faculty, and a Baton Rouge civic leader. He helped start LSU’s Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, serves on the Tureaud Chapter board, and was on the executive planning committee for the chapter’s 2013 reunion. Tayler B. Pierre, of Ama, La., a freshman mass communication-pre-law major, received the LSU A.P. Tureaud, Sr. Chapter 1964 Scholarship, and Emaye M. Moss, of Haymarket, Va., a freshman biochemistry major, was awarded the A.P. Tureaud, Sr. Endowed Scholarship. LSU Alumni Association Board of Directors Chair-elect Leo C. Hamilton and LSU Board of Supervisors members James Williams and Valencia Sarpy Jones shared their views about how the chapter can best serve LSU.

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LSU Alumni Association News


Sidney Rodgers, right, presents his 1962 LSU Ring to Vice President for Advancement Rhett Butler.

LSU Rings – Two rings were added to the LSU Ring Collection display this fall. Glynn D. Smith (1963 BACH ENGR), of Houston, donated his ring in September, and Sidney Rodgers (1962 BACH BUS) of Deatsville, Ala.,dropped off his ring at Homecoming.

Future alums at the Food Truck Wroundup.

Food Truck Wroundup – LSU first-year students and members of the Collegiate Club at LSU gathered at the Lod Cook Alumni Center in early September for the second annual Food Truck Wroundup hosted by the LSU Alumni Association. Future alumni enjoyed food truck grub from Tramonte’s, Pullin’ Pork, and Taco de Paco while listening to music by David St. Romain.

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Former Tiger great and Houston Astros infielder Alex Bregman is putting his All Star skills to work for the LSU Alumni Association as The Honorary National Fund Chair. Mike the Tiger and Brandli Roberts, director of on-campus events, display a “your name on the field” print presented to graduating seniors who join the LSU Alumni Association at the Century Club ($100) level.

Fall Grad Fair – Soon-to-be LSU alumni took care of their commencement needs – senior portraits, diploma frames, caps and gowns, LSU Rings, and more – at Grad Fair in September. More than 150 graduating seniors became official members of the LSU Alumni Association, and many purchased bricks on Tiger Walk. Photo by Nioz Tabrizi

Bregman, one of the most dynamic players in Tiger baseball history, is making his mark in the major leagues. Now, Bregman is going to share his talents, time, resources, and energy to help LSU raise dollars through the LSU Alumni Association Alumni Fund to support scholarship, professorships, awards, and other programs of excellence that touch all areas of University life. He joins an outstanding group of individuals on the Global Board of Directors and an enthusiastic staff dedicated to Investing in Tigers and Transforming Lives.


LSU Athletics

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LSU Alumni Association News

Homecoming 2016 Parade, Gridiron Victory Highlight Celebration

Photos by Johnny Gordon

Jan Liuzza, chair of the LSU Alumni Association Board of Directors, and her husband, Ron, throw beads to the crowd. 2015 Homecoming King Michael Mayen, seated, Vice President for Student Affairs Kurt Keppler, 2016 King Jacques Petit and Queen Natalie Burges, 2015 Queen Bianca Webb, LSU Alumni Association Board of Directors Chair Jan Liuzza, and President F. King Alexander. Photo by Steve Franz/LSU Athletics

Rachel Emanuel with grandsons Jeremiah, standing, and Joel. All spruced up for Homecoming.

Dot and Billy Cannon.

Following an action-packed week of events for future alumni on campus, returning alums and fans celebrated Homecoming 2016 on Oct. 1. Crowds at The Cook Hotel sought autographs from players and coaches and watched the Homecoming Parade, which passed in front of the Lod Cook Alumni Center. Among the dignitaries waving and throwing goodies were LSU President F. King Alexander and LSU Alumni Association Board of Directors Chair Jan Liuzza.

Joan Rigby, Owen Rigby, Jill Turnage, Elizabeth Rigby, Catherine Rigby, and Janet Doughty.

The LSU Alumni Association’s new game-day venue, CHEERS! in the Andonie Sports Museum, was open to all that day, providing party snacks and free beverages to those seeking a short respite from the festivities. At halftime, the Homecoming crown and scepter were handed over to new royalty – King Jacques Petit, an economics and mass communication major from Luling, La., and Queen Natalie Burges, a chemical engineering major from Katy, Texas – and fans reveled in the Tigers’ impressive 42-7 victory over Missouri.

OOPS! Marion Territo, winner of a Best Dressed award at the Independence Day Celebration, was incorrectly identified as Patricia Territo. The magazine regrets the error.

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LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016


LSU Alumni Association News

One More Time!

Tiger Band drum line.

Some 250 former Tiger Band members returned to campus for the 30th Tiger Alumni Band reunion in October, getting together for a weekend of activities highlighted by one more “Saturday Night in Tiger Stadium” with the Golden Band from Tigerland.

Colette Picou Chaisson and Kathy Hickman Hayden.

Following a Friday Golden Girls luncheon and evening social, an early Saturday rehearsal, and a pre-game party at the PMAC, reunion-goers joined current Tiger Band members for a halftime performance at the LSU vs. Southern Mississippi. A family affair – Mindy McCue McRee, Ryan McCue, Connor McCue, and Reggie McCue.

Kenlly Knight Brandon, former Director of Bands Frank Wickes, Sara Fulguhm, and future Golden Girl Hadleigh Fulghum.

We Support Beth - “There is an uplifting story behind these pictures, writes Beth Breaux Thompson. “I was diagnosed with breast cancer in January. Since then, I have been through surgery and extensive chemotherapy, and radiation therapy is in progress. My Tigerette ‘sisters’ have backed me up all year with a steady stream of cards, notes, and prayers that lifted my spirits. I wasn't well enough to march, but I was well enough to cheer for my fellow band alumni at the reunion. The picture is the of Tigerettes making a living breast cancer ribbon. That’s me in the middle holding a sign made by Lori Summerford Newsome.”

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Color Guard members – past and present – Emily Babin, Jessica Tillman-Guidry, and Stevie Glasspool.

Golden Girl alums pose for a photo before the haltime performance.

Kevin Rabon, James Henderson, Brandon Robichaux, and Jonathon Wesly.

LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016



The LSU vs. Wisconsin season opener at Lambeau Field – a 1,200-person, four-day trip – was a two years in the making and, despite the final score, it was a huge success.


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I would never have dreamed that fifty years after I played my last game at Lambeau Field, I would be returning to see my LSU Tigers play in this historic stadium. Being the honorary captain, great weather, great food – but most of all it was great to visit so many LSU alumni from so many states. It was a privilege to play for LSU, and LSU will always be special. – JIMMY TAYLOR BATON ROUGE

GEAUX WITH THE PROS IN 2017. VISIT traveling-tigers

Open bar for both events with that crowd? Boiled shrimp? Are you kidding me? It was all perfect! We didn't win the game but everything else, and I mean everything, was over the top and well done. – SUSAN AND DAVID CORONA BATON ROUGE

Once again, many thanks for a fantastic effort putting the weekend together. Everything was the best. Your team did an incredible job putting such a nice trip together for us. – GEORGE D. BAÑOS HOUSTON

Thank you and all the others who did such a great job of coordinating the trip to Green Bay. Obviously the outcome could have been better, but you guys made it a wonderful experience. – BOB AND SUSAN BUSH, DAVID AND LESLEY BUSH, DOUG AND AMANDA MCELVEEN MONROE, LA. LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016


LSU FANS ARE FUN-LOVING, GRACIOUS, AND PASSIONATE ABOUT THEIR FOOTBALL. We made so many new friends – it was the most enjoyable weekend we have had since starting our tours. You made lots of new LSU fans while converting the stadium to #Lambeaux. Geaux Tigers! –SUSAN BROBERG, PACKERS HERITAGE TRAIL TROLLEY TOURS

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Other than the football game, the alumni trip to Green Bay was fantastic. Probably the best I have been on. – R. WAYNE STRAIN COLLEGE OF HUMAN SCIENCES AND EDUCATION

Your group planned and executed one of, if not the best alumni trips I’ve been on. Everything was handled to the smallest detail from start to finish. – WAYNE MITCHELL HAMMOND, LA.

This was our first trip with the LSU Traveling Tigers. I sure hope it won't be the last. In spite of the game, we had a blast. Everything was first class. – RODNEY & NAN DAVIS BATON ROUGE

You guys know how to make your travelers feel like royalty. Hats off to all for a job well done! – SARAH HAYNES MINDEN, LA.

Everything was just as it was supposed to be. Results like that come only from hard work. Your group did an outstanding job. All in all, the trip was a blast. I just wish your group had been in charge of the game, as well as the trip. GEAUX TIGERS! – PAT MABRAY NEWELLTON, LA. LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016





or the past couple of decades, the LSU Department of Residential Life has been undergoing a long-term metamorphosis. LSU alumni from several years ago may recall that on-campus housing was divided into men’s and women’s dormitories, with women housed predominantly on the east side of campus, and men on the west. As one alumna who graduated in the late 1960s recently recalled that configuration, she added, “And never the twain should meet!” Today, living on campus is a completely different experience, with students’ housing choices determined not by gender but by academic interests. In fact, as one administrator pointed out, campus residences are no longer even called “dormitories” but instead are referred to as “residence halls” or “residential communities.” This new model coincided in part with the need for upgrading, renovating, replacing, and adding new housing on campus to accommodate the uptick in enrollment at LSU in the 1990s. New and renovated residence halls and on-campus apartments are continuing to add more options for students to live on campus. With the new construction and renovation, Residential Life’s administrators were looking to do more than simply provide students with bed and board. They also wanted to provide students with an enhanced learning environment. The department, under the leadership of Assistant Vice President Steve Waller, has developed a number of innovative programs to accomplish that goal. Robert Rohli, the director of LSU’s Living Learning programs, recently pointed out that the Residential Colleges Program, which allows students with similar interests to live together in halls that support and enhance those interests, has grown from the first in Herget Hall in 2000 to nine residential colleges today. Additionally, the construction of new residential halls allows LSU to use the latest advances in construction, including environmentally conscious techniques. LSU’s first LEED-certified (Leadership in Engineering and Environmental Design silver certification) building – Cypress Hall, the home of the Human Sciences and Education residential college – was opened in fall 2015.

LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016


Above left: Clint and Kay Willson. Photo by Eddy Perez


Opposite from left: The Willsons’ “Acoustics on the Balcony” activity, held on one evening each month, attracts students from a variety of backgrounds and majors; For Gage, a sophomore in communication studies, music is just one of many talents, but one he enjoys sharing at “Acoustics on the Balcony;” Hannah, a junior in food and nutrition studies, particularly appreciates the opportunity to get together with the Willsons and other students who share her love of music.


ne of the latest of Residential Life’s endeavors is the Faculty-In-Residence (FIR) program, which was first implemented in fall 2013. Rohli recalls that Waller and Director of Residential Life & Education Jonathon Hyde, Ed.D, “spearheaded the idea for a faculty-in-residence program to accompany the renovation/construction plan in LSU’s residence halls.” In fact, Hyde designed the FIR program at LSU based on his own experiences at both Cornell and the University of Southern California with input from Waller. According to the University’s description of the participants, “the Faculty-inResidence are engaged and motivated LSU faculty members who are invested in directly impacting students’ residential experiences through events that promote social and intellectual development, academic support, and advising in the residential college setting.” In short, professors and their families live on campus and interact with students outside the classroom every day of the week. Specially designed apartments were incorporated into the residence hall redesign plan to accommodate FIRs and their families. These spacious homes within student housing are in areas where students naturally congregate, which allows FIRs and their families to be right in the middle of campus life. On the flip side, students have easy access to the FIRs and their families, which can be a little intimidating. The program was at first put into place as a trial run, with faculty committed to serve a single year in residence. As the program proved successful, faculty were given the option of continuing to reside on campus, one year at a time for up to three years. In 2013-2014, the first year that the program was implemented, Associate Professor Johanna Dunaway from the Department of Political Science resided on the west side of campus, and Paige Davis, an instructor in the College of Engineering, lived on the east side. Both developed activities and rapport with the students who lived near them and proved that the program would be successful. The next year, 2014-2015, Dunaway passed the westside residence to her departmental colleague Associate Professor Belinda Davis, who currently holds the honor of being the longest-serving FIR, with 2016-2017 her final year in the program. In 2015-2016, Clint Willson became the eastside FIR and is currently serving in his second year.

26 LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016




he Willsons’ three-bedroom apartment atop Laville Hall is airy and spacious, and on a recent late September Sunday evening, the doors to the large – perhaps ten feet by twenty feet – balcony were wide open, a fitting metaphor for the wide-open welcome that Clint and Kay Willson give to all the students who visit their monthly “Acoustics on the Balcony” jam session. Even their dogs Clover and Leo seem to enjoy having visitors. Students are encouraged to bring their own instruments, whatever those may be, but the Willsons also provide a keyboard and, on this particular evening, a bass guitar that Kay Willson had intended to learn to play before she broke two fingers on her left hand. Kay is an event planner by profession, but she was once in a punk band and she still manages a few local bands. “I was in a punk band for a reason,” she explained in response to the students’ request that she sing with them. “With punk rock, you don’t necessarily have to sing on key – in fact, you’re usually just shouting the lyrics, which sort of suited me.”

Clint and Kay Willson are naturally suited to their role as one of the resident faculty families living on campus. Empty nesters whose youngest son just recently graduated from high school and started his first year at Southern Methodist University, the Willsons revel in their extended “family” of students. Their three sons – Andrew, 28; Tyler, 27; and Meyer, 18 – all grew up around the campus. Clint Willson, who is the Mike N. Dooley, P.E. Professor in the Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering, has been with the university for eighteen years, so the family has had lots of time to learn their way around. Now that their boys are gone, both Clint and Kay find solace in helping other people’s children find their own ways to be on campus. “Serving as an FIR is a privilege,” Kay explained. “We get as much from this experience as the students do. Before we decided to do this, I asked Paige [Davis, the previous FIR] what the two worst things were about it. She said, ‘Fire drills during dinner parties and parking.’ I figured we could handle those.” “And two of the best things,” quipped Clint, “are no yardwork and a very short commute!” This is the beginning of the Willsons’ second year on campus. “The first year was a bit of a learning curve,” Clint commented. “We were testing the waters to see what programs would be of greatest benefit to the students. We wanted to come up with some things that the students would enjoy as well as learn from.” About ten students showed up on this first “Acoustic on the Balcony,” with several others sending their regrets and vowing to attend the next one. “It’s early in the semester yet,” Kay commented. “By the end, if it’s like last year, we’ll have thirty or more.” In fact, last year, Kay staged a free concert for three of her bands in the courtyard of Laville, conveniently located just beneath the Willsons’ balcony, and invited the “Acoustic on the Balcony” regulars to be her opening act. They happily obliged. Two of those regulars – Hannah, a junior in nutrition and food science, and Gage, a sophomore in communication studies – were present when we visited. Hannah, who is interested in homeopathic and alternative medicine, has a beautiful, mellow voice and has taught herself to play guitar and piano so that she can accompany herself when she sings. Gage, an outgoing young man who arrived dressed a bit like a character from Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves, plays guitar and sings exceptionally well. He is also a performer in the Silks group at LSU, an activity that he described playfully as “pole dancing with curtains.” He must be good at it; though just coming to Silks by coincidence last year (“I was walking on campus, and someone said, ‘Are you going to Silks?’ I said, ‘I could be.’”), he had spent the summer touring in Scotland and France with the performance group.

LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016


“It’s really awesome that the Willsons do this,” Hannah said, “because it gives us some creative space that has nothing to do with our majors. We get to meet other people with similar interests and just be comfortable doing what we love to do.” The Willsons have also hosted Saturday “Cartoons and Donuts” events to allow the students to share down time with them in a family-style setting. Their programs so far have focused on giving students space to network with each other and develop social bonds that can serve as safety nets in the times of stress that most university students experience occasionally. Clint and Kay Willson live their own lives in high gear as well. Kay works as a business office manager for a local property management company, runs a successful event planning business of her own, manages local talent through her company Blondefire Productions, and hosts an open mic event every month at a venue called The Guru. In addition to teaching courses and supervising graduate students, Clint is also the director of the new Center for River Studies at LSU. When asked how he manages to juggle so many high profile roles at LSU, he smiled and said, “Our children are grown. The energy we put into raising our boys is now diverted to all these other things.” Kay nodded her agreement.

Top: Clint Willson began his service as an FIR in fall 2015 and enjoys being in the middle of campus life; Bottom: Kay Willson, with Leo, has found a way to fill her empty nest with music, laughter, and boisterous LSU students.

The Davis family – Luke, Belinda, Eli, Dan, and Cooper with Buster front and center.


hen we visited with the Davis family on the Friday before LSU’s first home game, they were busily preparing for a big tailgate event with students, faculty, and friends the next day. The three boys had finally settled into their comfortable living room to watch a little TV, though they were occasionally popping up to retrieve the soccer ball that the two younger boys were passing between them. The family dog was alternating among them, looking for attention. It was just a typical family Friday – with a bird’s eye view of LSU’s football stadium right at the window. Belinda Davis, her husband (BUSINESS AND ENGINEERING) Dan, their sons Eli, Cooper, and Luke, Buster the dog, and Natchez the cat have lived in an apartment atop the Residential College Complex (RCC) on the west side of campus for the past two and a half years. When Johanna Dunaway, her colleague in the Department of Political Science, decided to move off campus after her one-year commitment ended, Davis began to think seriously about applying for the program. She had ideas for activities and presentations that would benefit the west side students, who are mainly business and engineering majors, and she could also see how living on campus could give her children a rare opportunity like no other.



The FIR program is open to all disciplines, but FIRs must be very comfortable around students and must be able to give a significant portion of their time to the extracurricular activities and interactions that are a natural part of living in a student residence hall. “Ideally, FIRs should have at least five years in a tenure-track position even to consider participating,” Davis explained. “Otherwise, the extra activities of being an FIR added to the demands of preparing for tenure review would just be too much.” Belinda mentioned that a previous FIR decided not to continue because the program made her husband uncomfortable. “It is a little like living in a fishbowl,” Dan Davis confirmed. “Anyone who takes on this commitment has to have the personality for it,” Belinda agreed. “Our sons, especially Cooper, are fairly outgoing and don’t seem to mind that they’re sometimes the center of attention with the students. And Buster just loves it!” Natchez was a bit reticent to give his opinion, though he seemed quite comfortable, lounging on the landing of the stairs inside their home. Belinda laughingly suggested that having a faculty family with young children on campus gives their student neighbors a glimpse of “real life” from time to time. “Last year the two younger boys were in the same school, and we didn’t have bus service,” she recalled. “So students could probably hear me yelling, ‘Hurry up! Get in the van! We’re going to be late!’ on some mornings.” Belinda's husband, Dan, and another attorney had just opened a law practice in downtown Baton Rouge in July 2014 – just a month before the family moved to campus – so that year brought a lot of change for the Davis family. Dan's career as an attorney attracts attention from students as well, and they frequently ask him about how to stay out of trouble with the law. Of course, his former career in law enforcement (in Tallahassee, Fla.) prompts students to ask him about his experiences in that field as well. He seems to take the questions and the attention in stride. In fact, Dan has offered students who want to go to law school advice on the best approach as undergraduates, creating and presenting a mini-seminar on the topic. For him, living on campus has some definite advantages, not the least of which is the proximity to his office downtown. “Before we moved to campus,” he explained, “we lived in the Broadmoor area [on the far east side of Baton Rouge], and the drive to work was a nightmare. Now, I'm five minutes away from work. It's great!” “Yeah, we've decided to relocate to this side of town even after we leave campus,” Belinda agreed. “It's just so convenient.” The family’s open door approach has allowed Belinda to get to know students in ways that evaded her when she was in a traditional position. She cites as an example that, shortly after she moved into the RCC, she met a young woman who had already had a really bad first semester and was afraid that her hopes to attend graduate school were lost. Belinda has coached her ever since, and that student, now a junior, has been able to bring up her GPA and is taking the GRE in preparation for applying to graduate programs. “This student was the first in her family to attend college and didn’t know anyone who had experience with the kinds of problems she was having,” Belinda explained. “By helping her get back on track for reaching her dream, I learned that one of the best things this program can do is to help students get off on the right foot for their careers.” That experience led her to develop presentations and programs that are designed for just that purpose, with highly practical topics, such as “How to Talk to Your Professor.” She has also put together a number of other programs that help students learn more about themselves and about the social sciences that she represents. In addition to serving the students, Belinda has found that being an FIR provides her with a unique perspective for her own research. She is currently interested in how first generation college students from low income households are impacted by the higher cost of living in the residential colleges as opposed to traditional housing options. From top: Belinda Davis has the distinction of being the longest-serving FIR so far, having lived on campus since 2014. In his free time, Dan Davis plays music, hangs with his sons, and chats with LSU students, pastimes made easier by a short commute to and from his downtown Baton Rouge office. Eli Davis, Belinda and Dan’s eldest son, is a high school freshman this year. He takes living on campus in stride – just a day in the life of a typical teenager. Cooper Davis, Belinda and Dan’s middle son, feels right at home living on campus. Outgoing and witty, he even chatted with Shaquille O’Neal and got an autograph when Connor spotted O’Neal on campus recently. Luke Davis, youngest of the Davises’ three sons, makes room in the family’s campus residence to practice his soccer skills.

LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016


Belinda Davis enjoys meeting students where they live, and they enjoy dropping by to chat with her and to visit with Buster on her front porch. Photo by Jim Zietz

WORKING TOGETHER FOR LSU STUDENTS Though their circumstances are radically different – the Willsons’ empty nest and the Davises’ very full one – their feelings for the students at LSU are the same: affection, respect, and deep desire to help each one of them succeed. The events, presentations, and learning experiences they are able to bring are just the icing on the cake. The most important aspect of the FIR program is the connection that these faculty families make with their student neighbors. By being right where they are, these faculty families show students a slice of life that may influence them in their own aspirations, careers, and personal lives. Their work with LSU’s students is made possible by the staff and administration of the Department of Residential Life, whose vision and implementation of their dream of better on-campus housing has paid off with exceptional programs like this one. The Faculty-in-Residence program gives students access to faculty and their families that can make the critical difference in how they perceive their college experience. That difference can lead to greater student success and academic achievement. Clearly, it also has made a difference in the lives of the FIRs themselves. Brenda Macon is a freelance writer and editor in Baton Rouge.

By Lauren Heffker

WALKING PAST THE RESIDENTIAL COLLEGE COMPLEX (RCC) OFFICE, YOU’D NEVER GUESS THE BRICK BUILDING’S SECOND STORY HOUSES A FAMILY OF FIVE. The Davis family has made campus their home, and while their lifestyle is admittedly unconventional, they wouldn’t have it any other way. In their third and final year of the program, the family has grown accustomed to treating the University like any other neighborhood. The boys – Eli, Cooper, and Luke – attend three different schools this year, making an already tight schedule more packed. While it was an adjustment in the beginning, the boys love living on a college campus – and all the everyday perks that come with it – now. Living next to the Pete Maravich Assembly Center and Tiger Stadium offers opportunities the boys wouldn’t encounter in a regular community. Eleven-yearold Cooper has met well-known graduate Shaquille O’Neal and proudly shows a selfie with the basketball star to prove it. To add to his list of star athletes he’s on a first name basis with, Leonard Fournette comes around the house and plays soccer and football with the boys. The brothers don’t shy away from interacting with students, and Belinda explains how Cooper will join residents in playing soccer and Frisbee outside the RCC. The children often ride their bikes to explore the campus, and the “city within a city” feels like their backyard. Belinda’s father holds season tickets to football, baseball, and basketball, and has for decades, so the boys rarely miss an opportunity to support their favorite team in purple and gold. Besides tailgating and attending athletic events together, the family often goes to eat at an on-campus dining hall, The 5, where they have a meal plan. The Chimes is also a regular family favorite. Once a week, Belinda used to take the youngest, Luke, to see Mike the Tiger in his habitat just down the road. LSU has become an integral part of the boys’ lives. While Belinda said she doesn’t think her sons realize how much they’re going to miss the experiences they’ve had, there’s no doubt that the boys are born and bred to be LSU Tigers. Lauren Heffker, a sophomore in the Manship School of Mass Communication, writes for the Daily Reveille and Legacy magazine.



PAY IT FORWARD Celebrate and honor your LSU experience by joining the LSU Alumni Association. Your support is important to LSU’s future scholars. There’s no better way to stay connected to the University. Help support student scholarships and faculty awards, participate in exciting events, keep LSU traditions alive and enjoy exclusive member benefits.

LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016


Flood 32 LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016


Waterline “With the August flood ongoing and travel impossible due to high water, the five Southeastern Louisiana University professors in Impaired Faculties band began talking online about how to help” writes William B. Robison (1976 BACH H&SS, 1977 MAST H&SS, 1983 PHD H&SS) department head and professor of history at Southeastern Louisiana University. “On Aug. 14, with rain still falling, guitarist Joe Burns wrote ‘Waterline’ and sent a demo to the rest of the band. On Aug. 18, Burns, guitarists Dan McCarthy and I, bassist Randy Settoon, and drummer Ralph Wood completed the recording in Settoon’s home studio, which itself had been flooded three days earlier. Settoon mixed and mastered the song, and the band released it on Aug. 22, followed by Paul Catalanotto’s video on Sept. 1.” Founded in 2013, Impaired Faculties has a history of performing gigs for charitable functions, and to help flood victims, the band pledged all proceeds from the sale of the single to charitable organizations providing assistance to displaced families. For information, visit or

Vegas Tigers at the fundraiser.


Sin City Tigers passed a good time with Cajun food, drinks, and raffle prizes and raised $11,677 for the Baton Rouge Area Foundation flood-relief efforts. The fundraiser, held at Lola’s Louisiana Kitchen, included raffle prizes like: airline tickets, a Las Vegas Strip helicopter tour, Las Vegas show tickets, restaurant gift cards, and resort accommodations.

In true Tiger spirit, thousands of alumni and friends volunteered to assist those affected by the summer flood in South Louisiana. And thousands more across the country responded to recovery efforts. LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016


Brent Dugas shares a selfie.

Carissa Ieracitano, front, and Jane Gillis “box it up.”


Brad Feller with Southern Baptist Disaster Relief officers.

Baldwin Tigers Raffle

“LSU Little Rock Alumni Chapter vice

president and volunteer extraordinaire Brent Dugas writes: I am very proud of our chapter and community for coming together and making this effort a success. Our group was able to partner with a few local businesses to get this effort underway in a short amount of time, and they also provided us with the resources we needed to accomplish our goal. Volunteers filled a twenty foot U-Haul with hundreds of needed items, and Brad Feller, a former chapter president, and I drove the truck down to the donation drop off center in Ruston, La., where the disaster relief effort is a seriously well-oiled machine known as the Southern Baptist Disaster Relief, sponsored by the North American Mission Board. The organization has locations throughout the state to which donated items are sent based on demand and need. We were assured that our donations would first to Baton Rouge and then go to surrounding areas. Thanks to Subway for the food donation valued at $210 for our volunteers during our collection times on Saturday and Sunday; to Perfect Vision Manufacturing’s marketing team for developing the fliers to post all over Little Rock; and to First Security Bank and Crews & Associates Investment firm for the monetary donations from their “Friday Jeans Day.” Be on the lookout for a cashier’s check made payable to the LSU Alumni Association (memo Staff Flood Relief) in the amount of $1,000. Our thoughts and prayers are still with our fellow Tigers in Louisiana, as we know the fight to repair our city, and surrounding areas continues today.

34 LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016

Tigers in Baldwin County, Ala., planned to use proceeds from a fall football ticket raffle solely to bolster its chapter scholarship coffers. The South Louisiana flood changed that plan. “Aaron Beam, our club president donated to LSU vs. Alabama football ticket to raffle off at a watch party,” writes Phil Gagnet, membership/social media chair. “When the catastrophic flooding occurred in August, we decided to donate a portion of the $5,000 raised at the event to assist flood victims. The decision caused a surge in raffle ticket sales – even Auburn, Tennessee, Texas A&M, and Florida fans alike jumped in to help our effort.” The chapter sent funds to Catholic Charities, Rebuilding Together-Baton Rouge, and the Baton RougeArea Foundation.

Louisiana “comfort food” – a sure bet for raising funds!


“LSU SoCal alums hosted a pot-luck fundraiser at Second Half

Sports Bar in Manhattan Beach during the LSU vs Auburn game,” writes Cathy Mueller, secretary of the Southern California Alumni Chapter. “Members donated a wide selection of Louisiana comfort food, including red beans and rice, jambalaya, gumbo, shrimp creole, bread pudding, pecan pies, and many other side dishes and desserts. Abita Beer donated kegs of Amber beer, and Second Half donated a portion of proceeds from bar and food tabs during the event. There was also had a silent auction and raffle. More than100 alumni contributed to the success of the event.” According to Mueller, the chapter raised more than $2,500 that day and contributed an additional $1,000 for a total exceeding $3,500 to be split between the LSU Foundation Student Disaster Relief Fund and Capital Area United Way Flood Relief. A round of applause to all the chapter board members and members who made it happen.

GEAUX Vineyards Dr. Gil Rew, past chair of the LSU Alumni Association Board of Directors, writes: “My sister-inlaw Jane Matthews, of Austin, Texas, mother of Ryan Matthews (2013 BACH ENGR), put together a Louisiana basket for a local symphony to raise money for Louisiana flood relief!”

L SU Houston to the Rescue “We collected an entire U-Haul worth of supplies from our members and delivered them to Lod Cook Alumni Center for distribution to those at LSU who were in need from the flood,” writes Lisa Bunch, president of LSU Houston Alumni Chapter. When asked if she had photos of some of the members involved, she replied, “No, we were all working to get stuff loaded!” Kudos and thanks to Lisa, Bryan Wesley, Cheryl Fasullo, Julie Klibert, Cheryl Davis, and Rhonda Armour for donating their time and resources.

LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016























20% Discount for LSU Alumni Association Members with code LSUAAF13 LSU Alumni Association Gift Shop 3848 West Lakeshore Drive Baton Rouge, LA 70808 • 225.383.0241 • located in the Lobby of the Cook Hotel.

36 LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016


PU R 16.

P L E & G OLD 17.
















1. LSU Cambridge Tie $36 2. Nike Women’s White Pullover $75 3. Tigerbait Cookbook $19.95 4. Nike Men’s White Flash Jacket $120 5. Baden LSU White Autographed Football $30 6. Susan Shaw Gold Tiger Bracelet $30 7. Garb Gingham Infant/Toddler Shirt $45 8. Susan Shaw Gold Tiger Earrings $25

9. Kitty Keller Baby Tiger Cloisonné Ornament $42 10. Susan Shaw Gold Tiger Necklace $55 11. Ogio LSU Layover Bag $230 12. Nike White Long-Sleeve Performance Tee $75 13. a. Men’s Seiko LSU Watch $315 b. Women’s Seiko LSU Watch $315 14. Team Effort LSU Nylon Golf Head Cover Set $47 15. Memory Company Santa’s List Figurine $42

16. LSU Stadium Chair Ornament $14 17. Cutter & Buck Purple & White Stripe Pullover $60 18. Garb “Scarlett” Purple Infant Onesie $45 19. Nike Purple Youth #7 Tee $17 20. “Santa is coming to Louisiana” book $9.99 21. Garb White Long-Sleeve Girls Shirt $35 22. a. Rock ‘Em LSU Mike the Tiger Socks $22 b. Rock ‘Em LSU Geaux Tigers Socks $22

23. Round Top Gameday Wooden Santa $40 24. Memory Company LSU Nutcracker $42 25. Columbia Men’s Plaid Flannel Shirt $60 26. Aurora Lying Tiger $21 27. Oxford Golf Men’s Grape Polo $80 28. Ogio LSU Tarmac Bag $245 29. Nike LSU Purple & Black Cap $32 | Winter 2016 LSUEffort Alumni Magazine 30. Team LSU Cooler Golf Bag $225





Austin Allen, associate professor of landscape architecture and principal in Design Jones LLC, at the LSU Robert Reich School of Landscape Architecture, received the Community Service Award-Organization at the 2016 American Society of Landscape Architects annual meeting in October.

Austin Allen

Rebecca Christofferson

Rebecca Christofferson, assistant professor of pathobiological sciences in the School of Veterinary Medicine Vector-borne Disease Laboratory, has been awarded a research grant provided by the National Institutes of Health/National Institute of General Medical Sciences for $1.2 million to study the mosquito-borne viruses, Zika and chikungunya.The project is entitled “Characterization of temperature-driven heterogeneity in mosquito populations, the mosquito-arbovirus interaction and subsequent effects on transmission.” Christofferson, the primary investigator, is collaborating with colleagues at the University of New Mexico. Max Conrad, professor of landscape architecture, who is celebrating his fiftieth year teaching at LSU in 2016, was named one of DesignIntelligence magazine’s five Most Admired Educators for 2016–17.

Max Conrad



William D. Magee


William D. Magee, a lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Air Force, was appointed commander of Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps Detachment 310 at LSU. He is responsible for leadership and administration of the Air Force ROTC program; preparation, education, and training of ninety-three cadets for active






Travel with the LSU Traveling Tigers AND LET US TAKE CARE OF THE REST!

For more information or to place your name on the list, please call Amanda Robichaux at 225-578-3838 or email at

38 LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016

duty; instruction of two college courses in USAF Foundations and Leadership; and representation of the USAF to the University and people of southern Louisiana. Most recently, as commander of the 44th Maintenance Squadron, Tyndall AFB, Fla., he was charged with building a combat ready F-22 Raptor fleet while supporting the 44th Fighter Group’s mission of projecting unrivaled, fifth-generation combat airpower. Nancy Rabalais was appointed professor, Oceanography Nancy Rabalais and Coastal Sciences, and Shell Oil Endowed Chair in Oceanography/Wetland Studies in the LSU College of the Coast & Environment in August. The former executive director and professor with the Louisiana Universities Marine Consortium, or LUMCON, will be conducting her research as well as teaching at LSU, while also maintaining an affiliation and laboratory facilities at LUMCON. A marine ecologist, Rabalais is renowned for documenting and mitigating the effects of hypoxic zones—aquatic areas with low dissolved oxygen levels commonly known as “dead zones.” Jesse Allison, assistant professor of music; Michele Barbato, associate professor of civil and environmental engineering; Edgar Berdahl, assistant professor of music; Jin-Woo Choi, associate professor of electrical and computer engineering; Joyoni Dey, assistant professor of physics and astronomy; Jon Fletcher, assistant

Jesse Allison

Michele Barbato

Edgar Berdahl

Jin-Woo Choi

LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016


Around Campus

Joyoni Dey

Jon Fletcher

Keri Larson

Michael Malisoff

Adam Melvin

Sandra Moon

Carol Friedland

Navid Jafari

Morgan Kelly

Kanchan Maiti

Carol Wilson

Michelle Meyer

Jill Trepanier

Stephanie Sharuga

professor of veterinary medicine; Keri Larson, assistant professor of information and decision sciences; Michael Malisoff, professor of mathematics; Adam Melvin, assistant professor of chemical engineering; and Sandra Moon, assistant professor of voice, are among more than 100 faculty members from all fourteen Southeastern Conference (SEC) universities taking part in the 2016-17 SEC Faculty Travel Program, which provides support for selected individuals to collaborate with colleagues at other SEC member institutions. The SEC provides financial assistance for its faculty members to travel to other SEC universities to exchange ideas, develop grant proposals, conduct research, and deliver lectures or performances. Carol Friedland, assistant professor of construction management; Achim Herrmann, assistant professor of geology and geophysics; Navid Jafari, assistant professor of civil and environmental engineering; Morgan Kelly, assistant professor of biology; Kanchan Maiti, assistant professor of oceanography and coastal sciences; and Carol Wilson, assistant professor of geology and geophysics were selected by Louisiana Sea Grant as 2016 Louisiana Discovery-Integration-Applications Fellows and receive training from national experts in science communication and outreach and broadening their knowledge of coastal concerns during three workshops during the current academic year. Four LSU researchers received National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine’s Gulf Research Program Early-Career Research Fellowships and Science Policy Fellowships for 2016. The awards are part of the program’s mission to enhance oil system safety and the protection of human health and the environment in the Gulf of Mexico and U.S. outer continental shelf regions. Receiving Early-Career Research Fellowships were Michelle Meyer, assistant professor of sociology, and Jill Trepanier, assistant professor of geography and anthropology. Paulina Kolic, chemistry, and Stephanie Sharuga, oceanography and coastal sciences, received Science Policy Fellowships.

OOPS! Alvaro Armas, a 2017 Knauss Fellow, was incorrectly identified as a research associate in the School of the Coast and Environment. He is a research associate in the College of the Coast & Environment. The magazine regrets the error.

40 LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016

Ward-Oubre Nuptials

According to SmartAsset, LSU is rated as the best value among universities in Louisiana. The study also showed that LSU graduates have the highest average starting salaries among college graduates in Louisiana. To capture the true cost of attending a school, SmartAsset included tuition, student living costs, and the average scholarships and grants offered to students of the school. To capture what students get in return, the study reviewed student retention rate and the average starting salary. LSU’s college education value index figure was 58.36, placing it highest among Louisiana universities. When compared to Southeastern Conference peers, LSU is the fifth best value in the conference, behind Texas A&M, Vanderbilt, Florida, and Georgia. When looking at starting salaries, LSU graduates’ average starting salary is $48,900, which is the highest among college graduates in Louisiana. When compared to SEC peers, LSU graduates have the fourth-highest starting salaries among conference peers, behind only Vanderbilt, Texas A&M, and Florida. LSU received the 2016 Higher Education Excellence in Diversity (HEED) Award from INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine– the oldest and largest diversity-focused publication in higher education – making it the fifth year in a row the University has been named as a HEED Award recipient. The honor recognizes U.S. colleges and universities that demonstrate an outstanding commitment to diversity and inclusion. LSU was featured along with eighty-two other recipients in the magazine’s November 2016 issue. Total fall enrollment is 31,414, the eighth largest overall enrollment in University history. The total number of new freshmen is 5,475, the seventh largest entering class. The freshman class represents the most academically talented class to enter LSU. With a composite ACT of 25.7 and 3.4 GPA, the freshman class sets new academic highs for the University. With entrance requirements of a 3.0 grade point average and a 22 composite ACT score, the incoming freshman class far exceeds LSU’s basic admission requirements. The undergraduate and graduate programs at the Robert Reich School of Landscape Architecture once again received top rankings from DesignIntelligence magazine. The current issue of “America’s Best Architecture & Design Schools” ranked the undergraduate program as number one in the nation and the graduate program as number six in the nation. The undergraduate program has been consistently ranked in the top two in the nation for more than a decade.

Wedding Dreams Do Come True


hen Jacob and I got engaged, we agreed we wanted to enjoy every moment of the engagement stress-free. We wanted a wedding that reflected how much fun we have together, and we wanted something convenient for our family and friends. The LOD Cook Alumni Center was the only place we toured; we felt completely confident this venue and staff would keep us on track with our wedding goals.

Unique Cuisine and the Cook staff went above and beyond our expectations. They helped me choose a menu to entertain around 200 guests and helped me save some money along the way (bonus!). They helped me with layouts, assisted with some of my ideas for decorations, and turned my dream of having chocolate chip cookies as the groom’s cake a reality! It’s such a spacious venue if you are looking to turn it up on the dance floor. It was the best night ever, and we cannot thank the staff at the Cook Center, Unique Cuisine, and the Cook hotel for making our dream wedding come true.

LET US MAKE YOUR WEDDING DREAMS COME TRUE! Contact Lauren Regner to schedule a tour of the venue for your special day. 225.578.3829 •

LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016


Around Campus

In Focus

Xavier University President Emeritus Norman Francis speaks at the symposium.

From left, the Rev. Raymond Jetson; President of 100 Black Men of Baton Rouge Michael Victorian; Deputy Chief of Staff, Communications, Legal, Special Projects for Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards Julie Baxter Payer; LSU President F. King Alexander; and CNN host Don Lemon.

Moment or Movement – A two-day symposium hosted by LSU in October focused on the tensions and tragedies that took place in Baton Rouge and across the nation during the summer of 2016 explored the intersection of politics, identity, and democratic process. “Moment or Movement: A National Dialogue on Identity, Empowerment and Justice for All” included signature events such as “A Moment” with Don Lemon, CNN host, which will explore the events of Baton Rouge in summer 2016 and the media and community response that ensued, and culminated in “A Movement,” a keynote by civil rights pioneer and Xavier University President Emeritus Norman Francis, which explored “where we stand now as a society – and where our next steps might take us.” Other events included musical and spoken word performances; panel discussions with area business leaders and government officials; a presentation by Paul Taylor, author of Next America; a screening of Remember the Titans; explorations of media coverage and its impact on social justice; and more. Photos by Eddy Perez/LSU Strategic Communications

First Year Finances – Recording artist David Augustine, aka Dee-1 (2007 BACH BUS), returned to campus in September to speak with students at the First Year Finances program designed to promote financial literacy for first-year students. The event, funded by a State Farm grant, was sponsored by LSU First Year Experience and the Cale P. and Katherine Smith Student Financial Management Center. Recording artist Dee-1 and Raylea Barrow, coordinator in the Olinde Career Center and former graduate assistant in the Student Financial Management Center.

42 LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016

TIGER TRIVIA 1. What were the hutments? Shelters placed at the campus bus stops The apartment buildings on East State Street

Prefabricated temporary housing placed on campus after World War II An apartment building on Chimes Street

2. When did the first group of married student apartments open on Nicholson Drive? 1958 1960 1962 1964 3. What was Middleton Library called when it opened in 1958? Troy H. Middleton Library Hill Memorial Library LSU Library The Main Library

Mass Comm Honors – Four distinguished alumni were inducted into the Manship School of Mass Communication Hall of Fame in September. Those honored were Nicholls State University Professor Emeritus Alfred N. Delahaye (1949 BACH MCOM, 1951 MAST MCOM); Joseph Craig Kelley (1982 BACH MCOM), Indianapolis Colts vice president and communications official; Charlie McBride (1962 BACH MCOM), public policy expert and philanthropist; and the late Jeffery David Wright (1982 BACH MCOM), co-founder of Wright Feigley Communications.

4. How were the books moved from Hill Library to the new library in 1958? Students checked out books from Facility Services moved the books Hill and returned them to the by truck new library Students carried books from By conveyor belt one library to the other in boxes 5. Which LSU history professor is known as “the father of the Louisiana state archives?” Edwin A. Davis T. Harry Williams Bell Irvin Wiley Jimmie Davis 6. When did the Tigers play their first basketball game? 1893 1908 1909 1935 7. Who was their opponent in the first basketball game? Mississippi State Dixon Academy Kentucky Georgetown 8. Which artist performed the first concert held in the Pete Maravich Assembly Center? David Bowie Elton John Elvis Presley Johnny Cash 9. Although the football stadium has always been called Tiger Stadium, when did the name become official? 1958 1964 1970 2002 10. What was the Tower Services office? A visitor information center The office charged with maintaining located in the Memorial Tower the University Calendar Both A and B None of the above 11. When the second series of The Southern Review began in 1965, who were the two editors? Donald Stanford and Cleanth Brooks and Robert Lewis P. Simpson Penn Warren Charles Pipkin and Albert Erskine Huey Long and James Monroe Smith 12. When did LSU celebrate its 100th year in Baton Rouge? 1910-11 1935-36 1959-60 1969-70 Tiger Trivia is compiled by Barry Cowan, assistant archivist, Hill Memorial Library. Answers: 1:b 2:a 3:c 4:d 5:a 6:c 7:b 8:d 9:b 10:c 11:a 12:d

Charlie McBride; Craig Kelley; Lauren Wright, widow of Jeffrey Wright; and Cathy Delahaye Dunn, niece of Alfred Delahaye.

LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016


Around Campus

In Focus

Summer Scholars Class of 2016.

Summer Scholars - University College’s Summer Scholars annual Celebration of Excellence closing ceremony and banquet was held in July at The Club at LSU Union Square. Highlighting the event was the appearance of LSU 2016 Young Alumnus of the Year Mario Garner, who was inducted into the LSU Alumni Association Hall of Distinction in March. Thirty-two students – the twenty-fifth anniversary class of scholars – completed the eight-week summer bridge program that prepares selected high-achieving, minority students to make a successful transition from high school to the college.

From left, first row, Harvey Landry, Sandra Landry, Vicki Barton, Cliff Barton, Dot Wirth, and Greater Baton Rouge State Fair Foundation Chair J.H. Martin; second row, Interim College of Engineering Dean Judy Wornat, LSU Foundation Vice President for Development Ann Marie Marmande, Ourso College of Business Administration Associate Director Ragan Brown, College of Science Associate Dean Guillermo Ferreyra, College of Agriculture Director of Development Dinah Schuster and David Wirth; third row, College of Science Senior Director of Development Emilia Gilbert; and Dr. Susan Richarme; fourth row, Undergraduate Programs Director Ashley Junek, College of Science Associate Dean Andrew Maverick; and Vice President for Agriculture Bill Richardson.

State Fair Scholarships – In 2015, the Greater Baton Rouge State Fair Foundation announced that the organization was endowing more than $500,000 in scholarships to honor longtime fair volunteers for their years of service. This year, the last of those endowments totaling $145,000 were made to the LSU Foundation in the names of Dot Wirth, whose daughter is an LSU alumna; the late Kent James, agriculture director of the fair; and LSU alumni Harvey Landry and Cliff Barton.

44 LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016




90,000 READERS Charles D’Agostino, executive director at the Louisiana Business and Technology Center, was guest speaker at the September meeting of LSU Faculty & Staff Retirees Club.

LSU Retirees – Members of the LSU Faculty & Staff Retirees Club heard from Charles D’Agostino, executive director at the Louisiana Business and Technology Center, at group’s September meeting, and later toured the facility at LSU Innovation Park.



62,000 READERS FOR MORE INFORMATION VISIT or contact Kelsey David at 225-578-4529 or

LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016


Lolo the Ghost Snake

Around Campus

New Species Discovered in Madagascar Researchers discovered a new snake species in Madagascar and named it “ghost snake” for its pale grey coloration. They found the ghost snake on a newly opened path within the well-traveled Ankarana National Park in northern Madasgascar in February 2014. They studied the snake’s physical characteristics and genetics, which verified that it is a new species. The researchers from the LSU Museum of Natural Science, the American Museum of Natural History, and the Université de Mahajangan in Madagascar named it Madagascarophis lolo, pronounced “luu luu,” which means ghost in Malagasy. Their work was published in the scientific journal Copeia in September.

By Alison Lee Satake Photo by Sara Ruane

LSU post-doctoral researcher Sara Ruane in the field in Madagascar.

The ghost snake is related to a common group of snakes called Madagascarophis, or cat-eyed snakes, named for their vertical pupils, which is common among snakes that are active in the evening or night. Many of the cat-eyed snakes are found in developed areas or degraded forests. However, the researchers found the ghost snake on a national park’s iconic pale grey limestone Tsingy rocks. “None of the other snakes in Madagascarophis are as pale and none of them have this distinct pattern,” she said. The researchers conducted genetic analyses and were surprised to find that the ghost snake’s next closest relative is a snake called Madagascarophis fuchsi, which was discovered near a cave at a higher elevation a few years ago. The two snakes share similar habitats and were found in isolated areas. “I think what’s exciting and important about this work is even though the cat-eyed snakes could be considered one of the most common groups of snakes in Madagascar, there are still new species we don’t know about because a lot of regions are hard to get to and poorly explored. If this commonly known, wide group of snakes harbors this hidden diversity, what else is out there that we don’t know about?” said Sara Ruane, postdoctoral researcher at the LSU Museum of Natural Science and lead author of the paper. Malagasy master’s student Bernard Randriamahatantsoa spotted the snake on the path. Randriamahatantsoa, Ruane, and their collaborators discovered the ghost snake after hiking for more than seventeen miles in near-constant rain from their field site to the Ankarana park entrance. “It was really tough. It was a lot of work, but the payoff was big,” Ruane said. “Snakes are hard to find under the best of circumstances. They are pretty elusive.” That’s why the researchers conduct their fieldwork during the rainy season in Madagascar when snakes and their prey, such as frogs, lizards and even other snakes, are most active. After discovering this new species, the researchers returned to the U.S. to conduct morphological and genetic analyses. Part of the study of the snake’s physical characteristics includes counting all of the scales on its belly versus back and counting how many scales touch the eye and upper versus lower lip. Ruane extracted DNA from tissue samples from the ghost snake and the previously found Madagascarophis fuchsia. She compared five genes and loci, or the location or position of their DNA sequence on chromosomes, common to about 700 Malagasy snakes. In addition, Ruane and her colleagues mapped the genetic family tree, or phylogeny, for the entire group of Madagascarophis, which has five species. “All of the analyses we did supported that this is a distinct species despite the fact that we only have this one individual,” she said. The research was supported by the National Science Foundation.

Madagascarophis lolo, pronounced “luu luu,” which means ghost in Malagasy.

“All of the analyses we did supported that this is a distinct species despite the fact that we only have this one individual.”

Alison Lee Satake is a research editor in the Division of Strategic Communications and the Office of Research & Economic Development.

46 LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016

ON THE WEB American Museum of Natural History Science Bulletins: Field Notes from Madagascar -

The Lod Cook Alumni Center at Louisiana State University


Whether it’s business luncheons or wedding receptions, company meetings or class reunions, the Lod Cook Alumni Center can fulfill all of your needs with first-class service and accommodations. The Cook Alumni Center has nine meeting rooms totaling more than 12,300 square feet, and the Andonie Sports Museum, a stand-alone facility featuring LSU sports history, to fit your event requirements. With award-winning Unique Cuisine catering on site, as well as The Cook Hotel steps away, we have everything you need for a comfortably arranged event.

Look no further than the Lod Cook Alumni Center To book rental space, contact Lauren Regner, Director of Event Rentals, at 225-578-3829 or email at

LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016


Around Campus

2016 LSU 100 Fastest Growing Tiger Businesses Named Recruiting Source International was announced as the No. 1 fastest growing company for the 2016 LSU 100. Bianca McWilliams Jackson, Tiger Leader, serves as the company’s chief operating officer and is a chemical engineering graduate of the College of Engineering. Global Commerce and Services, a tech firm in Harvey, La., topped the list in 2014 and 2015. The LSU 100 Summit Award was awarded to the honoree company that generated the highest revenue amount for the award period. The 2016 recipient is Bridger Logistics LLC. Julio Rios, Tiger Leader of Bridger Logistics, LLC, is a graduate of the College of Science. Since the inaugural LSU 100 event in 2011, nine companies have made the list all six years. These exemplary organizations include Gladden Sales, LLC; Global Data Vault; Horizon Wealth Management; Immense Networks, LLC; J.P. Oil Company, LLC; Lipsey’s, LLC; SGS Petroleum Service Corporation; Sparkhound; and USA Technologies, Inc. The highly competitive program that identifies, recognizes, and celebrates the 100 fastest growing Tiger-owned or Tiger-led businesses in the world. In addition to celebrating the success of the honorees, the LSU 100 provides a forum to pass lessons on to the next generation of LSU entrepreneurs. • A Dog’s Day Out, LLC

• Giraphic Prints


• Gladden Sales, LLC

• Alloy Metals and Tubes International Inc.

• Global Data Vault

• Anedot

• Gremillion & Pou Marketing

• AOS Interior Environments

• H. Davis Cole & Associates, LLC

• APS Engineering and Testing

• Hatchit

• Argent Financial Group

• Heirloom Cuisine, LLC

• Asakura Robinson

• Hickory Small Animal Hospital

• Aydell Investments, LLC, dba Sport Clips

• HitLights

• Big Fish Presentations • BMI Audit Services, LLC • Bridger Logistics • Carter & Hatcher Consulting, LLC • CEG Assessments • CompuFlow Solutions • CORE Health Networks • CWIS LLC • Dewmar International BMC, Inc. • Distinctive Art Source • Facilities Maintenance Management, LLC • Faulk & Meek General Contractors, LLC

48 LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016

• GlobalSpeak Translations

• Horizon Wealth Management • HR Solutions, LLC • Ideavate Solutions Pvt., Ltd. • Immense Networks, LLC • Indigo Minerals • Investar Bank • IWD Agency • J.P. Oil Company, LLC • Joubert Law Firm, APLC • Landon Companies • Launch Media • Lipsey's, LLC • Manasseh, Gill, Knipe & Belanger, PLC • MasteryPrep

• Fontenelle & Goodreau Insurance, LLC

• Mele Printing

• Gastar Exploration, Inc.

• Moran Construction Consultants, LLC

• Gatorworks

• MR Engineering & Surveying, LLC

• ROSA Enterprises Corporation dba The UPS Store #2305

• Success Labs

• Paper Rock Scissors, LLC • Peachtree Tents & Events, LLC

• Safe Chain Solutions

• Team People, LLC

• Pearl Events Austin

• SGS Petroleum Service Corporation

• Teknarus

• Performance Contractors Inc.

• Shoreline Energy, LLC

• The Advocates

• Perry, Balhoff, Mengis & Burns, LLC

• Sigma Consulting Group, Inc.

• Pinot's Palette

• Sigma Engineers & Constructors

• The Anderson Group Real Estate Services

• Pod Pack International, Ltd.

• Sigma Marble, Tile, Terrazzo

• The Relocation Center

• Pontchartrain Partners, LLC

• Skyhawk

• Tin Roof Brewing Co.

• Puryear IT

• Smith and Baker Landscapes

• Turner Industries

• Quality Engineering & Surveying, LLC

• Solid Ground Innovations

• USA Technologies Inc.

• Raising Cane’s Chicken Fingers

• South Park Animal Hospital

• Vintage Construction Group, LLC


• Southeastern Janitorial

• Visual Risk IQ

• Recruiting Source International

• Southern Marsh Collection

• Vivid Ink Graphics

• Red Six Media

• Sparkhound

• Ritter Maher Architects

• SRI Telecom

• Western Institute for Biomedical Research

• Roofing Solutions, LLC

• Stuart & Company General Contractors

• Window World of Baton Rouge, LLC

• NolaCajun

• Supergoop!

• Zehnder Communication, Inc.

LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016


Focus on

Griffin Campbell: Solving the Saxophone

FACULTY By Meg Ryan Photo by Alice Wack

Saxophone Professor Griffin Campbell.

“It can become perfect for a moment, but it never stays that way, and that keeps him working on his craft.”

50 LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016

Speaking with Griffin Campbell, it’s obvious very quickly that he is passionate about one thing – the saxophone. Campbell, the J. Franklin Bayhi Alumni Professor and Distinguished Professor of Saxophone, said his desire to learn the instrument started in fifth grade. While he’s always been attracted to math and science, he saw the saxophone as a “problem that needed solving. With its buttons, springs, and various pitches, the instrument has its quirks.” “The saxophone is like an engineering problem. You look at that thing, and it’s like a borg ship,” Campbell said, laughing. Now, the professor uses what he’s learned to help up-and-coming saxophone players. He meets with his students – he had eighteen this semester – weekly one-onone and as a group. Playing individually with the professor and collaboratively with other students is something he says students don’t get in every major. Typically, Campbell has fourteen oneon-one sessions with each student before the semester is over, and that doesn’t count his extra office or coaching hours. “I have one-on-one contact with students from the time they’re freshman through the time they graduate when they’re undergraduates, and the same thing with master’s and doctoral students,” he explains. While he only meets with the saxophone students for one hour each week, he expects them to take the material he’s given them to work on their instruments on their own time. He grades the students based on how much they’ve done on their own, and he hopes each saxophonist is playing the instrument about four hours a day. All learning is valuable, Campbell said, so along with individual practice, putting challenges into the students’ learning, like collaborating with other musicians, adds

to the average music education. Allowing all the students to play for and with each other puts the musicians in a pressurized environment, he explains. And, while some students are training as saxophonists, others are music education majors, and having the opportunity to listen and critique performances is something those students can use in their future careers. Group meetings allow all the students, from freshmen to doctoral levels, to listen and comment on every skill level. “[It’s] that experience from teaching other people, from the very beginning,” he says. “And I make the really young ones comment on doctoral players.” Campbell’s students aren’t the only ones learning. Like any other university professor, he is always doing research. The musician says he’s learning all the time by finding new solutions to his instrument. Its pitch, its sound quality, and its range are all things that can waver on the saxophone, but as he continues to play and learn more about the instrument, he finds solutions. “As I continue to get better, it gives me more things to talk about with people,” he says. The professor thinks his research and his teaching go hand-in-hand. Without the research, his teaching methods would go stale, he said, because he’d have no new teaching methods. This continuous improvement is what drew Campbell to the saxophone in the beginning, and though he has taught at LSU since 1984, the instrument continues to challenge him. It can become perfect for a moment, but it never stays that way, and that keeps him working on his craft. “It wires me up in ways that nothing else does,” Campbell said. Meg Ryan, a senior in the Manship School of Mass Communication, is editor-in-chief of Legacy, a student-produced quarterly magazine.

LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016


Coaching Change


Orgeron Named Interim Football Coach By Bud Johnson Photos by Steve Franz

Interim Coach Ed Orgeron congratulated by Athletic Director Joe Alleva, marching down Victory Hill, and on the field in Tiger Stadium.

“His enthusiasm is contagious, and he has outstanding leadership characteristics.”

Once Ed Orgeron got the word he would be LSU’s interim football coach, it was full speed ahead for the fiery Cajun. There was little doubt he was prepared for the moment. His whirlwind, week-one performance was so impressively focused that he should put on clinics for athletic directors contemplating firing a coach at midseason. There was no indecisiveness in this product of Bayou Lafourche. Consider these actions: • Orgeron reportedly fired offensive coordinator Cam Cameron. • Installed Steve Ensminger as offensive coordinator and quarterback coach. • Met with and won over the team immediately after they were reduced to tears by Les Miles’ departing message. • Quickly put together a coaching staff. • Promised to flip the script and tweak the offense. • Dusted off formations he had seen as an assistant on national championship teams at Miami and Southern Cal. • Reduced the team’s time on the practice field. • Opened the Missouri game with four wide receivers on offense. Orgeron’s first meeting with the team would be critical. He would follow the departing Miles to the podium. When Miles concluded his message to the team, there was not a dry eye in the room. The new coach did not waver. By the time he ended his talk, most team members were ready to suit up and scrimmage.



DEFENSIVE LINE Ed Orgeron/Pete Jenkins


OFFENSIVE LINE Jeff Grimes/Jeff Grimes

OUTSIDE LINEBACKERS Bradley Dale Peveto/Dennis Johnson

OFFENSIVE COORDINATOR Cam Cameron/Steve Ensminger

RUNNING BACKS Jabbar Juluke/Jabbar Juluke

DEFENSIVE BACKS Corey Raymond/Corey Raymond


WIDE RECEIVERS Dameyune Craig/Dameyune Craig

STRENGTH & CONDITIONING Tommy Moffitt/Tommy Moffitt

SPECIAL TEAMS COORDINATOR Bradley Dale Peveto/Bradley Dale Peveto

TIGHT ENDS Steve Ensminger/Eric Mateos

CHIEF OF STAFF Steve Kragthorpe/Steve Kragthorpe DIRECTOR, PLAYER PERSONNEL Dave Dingman/Austin Thomas

52 LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016

2016-17 BASKETBALL SCHEDULE DATE Coach O immediately opened LSU practices to high school coaches and former players. Ex-Tigers were talking to the team the first week and leading the team down Victory Hill before the first game. Both of these groups embraced the new leadership. No one can project who will succeed Les Miles permanently. But most observers were impressed with Orgeron’s decisive action in his first week as the LSU coach, especially the Tigers’ emphatic 42-7 victory over Missouri. With the SEC’s leading rusher Leonard Fournette sidelined with an ankle injury, the Tigers piled up 634 yards of total offense. Running backs Derrius Guice and Darrel Williams each scored three TDs and ran for over 100 yards rushing. Joe Alleva, athletics director, praised Miles in the introductory press conference for Orgeron. “It is never easy to make a change” Alleva said, “especially when it involves a man like Les Miles. His record here is well documented. Les Miles is loved by his players, and that is because he cares about them as people. We thank him for all he did for LSU. “… this program needed a change,” he continued. “The change was necessary to give the players the best opportunity to succeed. At the end of the day it is all about the players, their experience and where they are going in their lives. I felt at this time, Ed Orgeron is the right man to take over this program. His enthusiasm is contagious, and he has outstanding leadership characteristics.” Orgeron agrees with Alleva about the players. “The most important people who enter our building are the players,” Coach O said. “After all, they play the game.” Bud Johnson, a former LSU Sports Information director and author of The Perfect Season: LSU's Magic Year – 1958, is the retired director of the Andonie Sports Museum.




Mon, Nov 7 Reinhardt

Baton Rouge, La. (Maravich Center)

7:00 p.m.

Sat, Nov 12


Baton Rouge, La. (Maravich Center)

1:00 p.m.

Tue, Nov 15

Southern Miss

Baton Rouge, La. (Maravich Center)

7:00 p.m.

Fri, Nov 18

North Florida

Baton Rouge, La. (Maravich Center)

7:00 p.m.

at Paradise Island, Bahamas (Imperial Arena)

11:00 a.m.

BATTLE 4 ATLANTIS Wed, Nov 23 Wichita St.

Thu, Nov 24 Louisville or Old Dominion at Paradise Island, Bahamas (Imperial Arena)


Fri, Nov 25

at Paradise Island, Bahamas (Imperial Arena)


Tue, Nov 29 Houston

Baton Rouge, La. (Maravich Center)

8:00 p.m.

Tue, Dec 13

North Carolina Central

Baton Rouge, La. (Maravich Center)

8:00 p.m.

Sat, Dec 17

Texas Southern

Baton Rouge, La. (Maravich Center)

5:00 p.m.

Mon, Dec 19 Charleston

Baton Rouge, La. (Maravich Center)

7:00 p.m.

Thu, Dec 22 Wake Forest

at Winston-Salem, N.C. (Joel Coliseum)

8:00 p.m.

Thu, Dec 29 Vanderbilt *

Baton Rouge, La. (Maravich Center)

8:00 p.m.

Wed, Jan 4

Missouri *

at Columbia, Mo. (Mizzou Arena)

8:00 p.m.

Sat, Jan 7

Mississippi St. *

Baton Rouge, La. (Maravich Center)

2:30 p.m.

Wed, Jan 11

Texas A&M *

at College Station, Texas (Reed Arena)

7:30 p.m.

Sat, Jan 14

Alabama *

Battle 4 Atlantis

Baton Rouge, La. (Maravich Center)

2:30 p.m.

Wed, Jan 18 Auburn *

at Auburn, Ala. (Auburn Arena)

7:30 p.m.

Sat, Jan 21

at Fayetteville, Ark. (Bud Walton Arena)

7:30 p.m.

Baton Rouge, La. (Maravich Center)

8:00 p.m.

Arkansas *

Wed, Jan 25 Florida * SEC/BIG 12 CHALLENGE Sat, Jan 28

Texas Tech

at Lubbock, Texas (United Supermarkets Arena) 1:00 p.m.

Wed, Feb 01 South Carolina *

Baton Rouge, La. (Maravich Center)

8:00 p.m.

Sat, Feb 04

Texas A&M *

Baton Rouge, La. (Maravich Center)

8:00 p.m.

Tue, Feb 07

Kentucky *

at Lexington, Ky. (Rupp Arena)

6:00 p.m.

Sat, Feb 11

Arkansas *

Baton Rouge, La. (Maravich Center)

7:30 p.m.

Tue, Feb 14

Ole Miss *

at Oxford, Miss. (The Pavilion)

8:00 p.m.

Sat, Feb 18

Alabama *

at Tuscaloosa, Ala. (Coleman Coliseum)

2:30 p.m.

Tue, Feb 21

Auburn *

Baton Rouge, La. (Maravich Center)

6:00 p.m.

Sat, Feb 25

Georgia *

at Athens, Ga. (Stegeman Coliseum)

5:00 p.m.

Wed, Mar 01 Tennessee *

Baton Rouge, La. (Maravich Center)

6:00 p.m.

Sat, Mar 04 Mississippi St. *

at Starkville, Miss. (Humphrey Coliseum)

5:00 p.m.

at Nashville, Tenn. (Bridgestone Arena)


Tue, Mar 14 Wed, Mar 15 NCAA First Four

at Dayton, Ohio (UD Arena)


Thu, Mar 16 Thu, Mar 16 NCAA 1st/2nd Rounds

at Sites TBD


Thu, Mar 23 Sun, Mar 26 NCAA Regionals

at Sites TBD


Sat, Apr 01 Mon, Apr 03 NCAA Final Four

at Phoenix, Ariz. (University of Phoenix Stadium) TBA


* Conference Games

LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016


Anatomy of a Blowout


One-Sided Win Clinches National Title By Bud Johnson Photos courtesy LSU Athletics

High School Rivals – Warren Rabb of Baton Rouge High and Billy Cannon of Istrouma teamed up for LSU’s biggest offensive outburst of the 1958 season, as the Tigers scored 35 points in the fourth quarter to wallop Tulane, 62-0. It was the final game of the year and clinched the national championship for LSU.


1 2 3 4 FINAL

LSU 0 6 21 35 62 TULANE 0





“It never occurred to him [Dietzel] that his team would be so dominant.”

Only one game stood between LSU and the national championship in the third week of November in 1958. But Coach Paul Dietzel was alarmed by two sub-par performances by his No. 1-ranked Bayou Bengals. In the two previous games Duke, although out-scored, had out-gained Dietzel’s team, running right at a proud Tiger defense; and Mississippi State did everything but win the game, a 7-6 LSU decision in the mud. Arch-rival Tulane could spoil LSU’s chances for a perfect season and national honors. Dietzel had reason to expect a salty effort from Tulane. Bear Bryant had praised the Green Wave as the best defensive team he had played all year. Greenie quarterback Richie Petitbon was a quick and talented athlete who would try to mimic the moves that Mississippi State’s Billy Stacy had shown LSU a week earlier. Tulane Stadium was packed with 83,000 fans, an SEC record crowd, many of whom were seeing the Tigers for the first time that year. This was a big payday for LSU. Each team would get a $150,000 check, larger than most of the bowl payouts of that day. LSU led 6-0 at halftime, but the Tiger players noticed their counterparts were dragging as they left the field. “We could see that they were tired,” Go Team tackle Dave McCarty said. “We were talking about it in the locker room. We knew that we would be fresh and they would be tired in the second half. The coaches had us believing in the system. When the fourth quarter rolled around, we would have the advantage.” Dietzel’s system was designed to keep the White Team fresh for the fourth quarter. It worked to perfection against Tulane. LSU’s three teams destroyed Tulane in the second half. To compound matters, the Go Team was backed up on its end of the field at the start of the fourth quarter and had to punt, using up one of its two appearances for the quarter. When the team returned to the game, Scooter Purvis took a screen pass from Durel Matherne and reeled off a 54-yard touchdown play. That productive foray quickly used up the Go Team’s last eligible appearance in the final period. “After Scooter’s touchdown,” McCarty said, “I remember telling the coaches, ‘We’re dead. We can’t go back in the game. We have already made two appearances this quarter.’” The Bandits, by stopping Tulane, quickly used their two eligible appearances in the fourth quarter. It left only one unit – the White Team – available during the final fifteen minutes. Everything was working for LSU – their system of substitution, their defense, the Wing-T, and their kicking game. “Tommy Davis put on one of the greatest kicking exhibitions I have ever seen,” McCarty said. Johnny Robinson put on a display of his athleticism, earning UPI Back of the Week honors for his efforts. He scored four touchdowns – a 34-yard run in the third quarter; caught two scoring passes from Rabb, one 45-yard TD pass and a 23-yard TD pass; and he scored on a 34-yard punt return in the fourth quarter. The punt was short; Robinson caught the ball in traffic while running at full speed, and quickly zipped past Tulane’s punt coverage for an easy six. Cannon scored once in the first half, once in the third quarter, and the final TD of the game, a 45-yard run, his longest of the season. Max Fugler played superbly and received his second national Lineman of the Week award. Trailing by a touchdown after the first thirty minutes, Tulane appeared exhausted in the second half. The score was 27-0 after three quarters. Still, no one could foresee the outcome. Tulane was leg weary. The White team was rested. And LSU's five touchdowns in the fourth period touched off a media firestorm. Dietzel was accused of running up the score.

The New Rule Media reports did not take into account that the Bandits and the Go Team quickly used their allotted appearances in the fourth quarter and were unable to return to the

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game. As soon as Purvis scored, everyone on the LSU bench knew the Go Team could not re-enter the game. Apparently, no one else knew. Not the 83,000 in attendance. And no one in the press box. Mel Branch, the big bopper of the Bandits, took it as a personal challenge to keep Tulane's Petitbon from getting 1,000 yards of total offense for the season. Branch sacked Petitbon three times that day. When the Bandits held Tulane in the fourth quarter, the Green Wave punted and LSU's defensive specialists left the field. After another defensive stop, the Bandits went to the sidelines for good. “I was not going to use the Go Team on defense, or the Bandits on offense,” Dietzel said. “It would have been more humiliating if we had punted on first down in the fourth quarter.” The new substitution rule, which limited a player to two appearances per quarter, was not widely understood by the fans. Most of the media were not aware of the status of a player's eligibility to return to the game, or in LSU's case, a unit's eligibility. LSU dressed only thirty-six players that day. Had Dietzel wished to keep the score in check, he could have had the Bandits play offense as they had against Duke. However, Darryl Jenkins, Bandit safety, played quarterback when the defensive specialists ran offensive plays. But Jenkins had suffered a broken rib against Mississippi State and did not play against Tulane. Dietzel could have reduced the White team's offense to Red Brodnax up the middle. It was Brodnax who had set up LSU’s lone TD against Mississippi State a week prior with three substantial gains up the middle. Or, he could have punted on first down. All of these options would have ultimately attracted criticism. The LSU staff was guilty of developing a system which kept the Tigers’ best players energized for the fourth quarter. LSU's best athletes, as intended, had fresh legs. It was the contrast between the two teams – one vital, one helpless – that engendered an outcry from the media. No person in the press box was in charge of substitution eligibility. Had that information been made available to the media, they would have time to process it and possibly project what was about to take place. The Tigers were running past a tired and beaten team in the final fifteen minutes. Virtually every play they ran resulted in a long gain. Robinson averaged 9.1 yards per carry; Rabb, 9.0; Cannon, 7.8; and Purvis had 6.5. Dietzel was 2-0-1 in three previous meetings with Tulane. He left the stadium two years before with a hard-earned 7-6 victory courtesy of Jimmy Taylor, who scored a touchdown, kicked the extra point, and provided several game-saving defensive plays. The '58 team was Dietzel's first winner at LSU. One-sided wins had been scarce. He beat Mississippi State 34-7 in 1955. Alabama fell 28-0 in 1957. The Miami, Kentucky, and Duke games were blowouts in 1958. Five Duke turnovers made that margin decisive, and the Blue Devils had no trouble moving the ball against LSU. The Tigers had to fight for their lives the previous week against Mississippi State. There was little to suggest that LSU would have an easy time against Tulane. I don't believe Dietzel made a concerted effort to run up the score. He prepared his team to play a rival that had competed well in the past. Most of the scoring by LSU in the fourth quarter came on quick scoring bursts, not time-consuming drives. He was surprised that both the Go Team and the Bandits had used up their appearances so quickly in the final quarter. It never occurred to him that his team would be so dominant.

Mister Touchdown – Johnny Robinson scored four touchdowns and gained national Back of the Week honors in LSU’s runaway win over Tulane.

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Austin Thomas: Behind the Scenes in Football Recruiting


By Bud Johnson Photo courtesy LSU Athletics

Austin Thomas.

When a coaching change occurs, recruiters across the nation start dialing the phone. Commitments, not bound to any institution until national signing day in February, will hear from virtually all the schools that initially contacted them before they made a public preference. No one is more aware of that than LSU’s Austin Thomas, promoted from personnel director to general manager once Ed Orgeron became interim coach. Who is Austin Thomas, you ask? You won’t see him quoted on the sports pages. You won’t see him on TV along the LSU sidelines. But you might find him viewing videos of prospects in the football operations building. Or calling high school players to arrange their visits to campus. Or organizing a recruiting trip to LSU for prospects and their families. His attention to detail is vital to the LSU football staff on recruiting weekends for a big game like Alabama. Thomas had a vital role in assembling the present Tiger team. He had a hand in developing the recruiting classes that are represented by the Tigers you see on the field this year. In his first two seasons at LSU, he helped the Tigers claim back-to-back Top 5 signing classes in 2014 and 2015. He is one of those invaluable individuals LSU football cannot do without. Like the equipment staff. Or the

training staff. His game is recruiting. And he has done it so well that two of college football’s heavyweights – LSU and Southern Cal – battled for his services in the past year. The Tigers came out the winner. Thomas has received high praise from everyone associated with LSU football recruiting – from former recruiting coordinator Frank Wilson to interim head coach Ed Orgeron. Wilson told FootballScoop, “I’ve never worked with someone as talented as he is in this role. Austin is a future NFL general manager.” “Austin is a great evaluator,” Orgeron said. “He spends countless hours devouring film. He is highly organized when gathering information on a player. From talent identification and evaluation, to connecting with players and managing all of their visits, Austin runs it all. He’s the main reason for our recruiting success.” Thomas’ primary responsibilities include prospect evaluating prospects, managing recruiting, maintaining LSU’s recruiting database, and updating the recruiting board. He was named FootballScoop’s Personnel Director of the Year in 2015. Last February Thomas accepted the job at USC, where he had worked from 2011 to 2013. Three months later, he decided to come back to LSU.



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The Big Play That Preceded Cannon’s Run Every Tiger fan has heard the story of Billy Cannon’s run. Billy Cannon’s exteraordinary 89-yard punt return triggered LSU’s 7-3 win over the Ole Miss Rebels on Halloween Night in 1959. A play that few have heard about helped make it possible. Fog and a light mist made for damp playing conditions that night. LSU had already lost three fumbles. Ole Miss coach John Vaught believed that Jake Gibbs’ punting and a stout Rebel defense would keep the Tigers from scoring in the final quarter of the SEC’s Game of the Year. Vaught frequently punted on third down, trying to force LSU into poor field position and hoping another bobble might end Tiger hopes. The next few plays set up Cannon’s dramatic run. Cannon punted from the LSU 20. Gibbs fielded the ball at the Rebel 39 and returned it to the 49. The Rebels gained three to the LSU 48. That made it second and seven. At that point, Gibbs rolled out, and the Tigers’ Lynn LeBlanc broke free and threw him for a ten-yard loss. Now it was third and seventeen from the Rebel 42. Without that sack, Ole Miss would have been punting on third down from midfield. Had the Rebels kicked from that position, the ball would have likely gone into the end zone for a touchback, negating the most famous play in LSU football history.

By Bud Johnson

1959 Captain Lynn LeBlanc.


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Robert L. Atkinson (1952 JD), an attorney with Breazeale, Sachse & Wilson, Baton Rouge, was named to the 2017 edition of Best Lawyers in America in the area of Banking & Finance Law. Sekender A. Khan (1959 PHD AGR), of Elizabeth City, N.C., retired after fifty-four years of teaching and research in Texas and North Carolina. Khan is the recipient of grants from NSF, NIH, Quaker Oats Foundation, and University of North Carolina. He received the Order of the Long Leaf Pine award for his dedicated and enthusiastic service to the state of North Carolina; the Richard Caswell Award from the University of

Degrees BACH Bachelor’s Degree MAST Master’s Degree PHD Doctorate SPEC Specialist DVM Doctor of Veterinary Medicine JD Juris Doctorate (LSU Law School) MD Medical Doctor (LSU School of Medicine) DDS Doctor of Dental Science (LSU School of Dentistry) Colleges/Schools AGR Agriculture A&D Art & Design C&E Coast & Environment H&SS Humanities & Social Sciences SCI Science BUS Business HS&E Human Sciences & Education ENGR Engineering M&DA Music & Dramatic Arts MCOM Mass Communication SCE School of the Coast & Environment SVM School of Veterinary Medicine SW Social Work

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North Carolina Board of Governors for his service at the Elizabeth City State University; and a plaque of appreciation from the Herman Glenn Cooke Department of Biology and Marine Environment Science at Elizabeth City State University for his dedicated service. An avid gardener who owns farmlands and woodland and enjoys his life in outdoor activities. He maintains and does experiments on medicinal plants and grows oriental vegetables for commercial purposes. He is involved in community activities and ran for the Pasquotank County Supervisor for Soil and Water Conservation in November. He is originally from Bangladesh, the home of the Royal Bengal Tiger. Khan is a poet and author of Snake Venom and Bee Sting. A third volume, Mosquito Bites, is in the works, and he hopes to combine the works under the title Tiger’s Roar, dedicated to Mike the Tiger. He is also an author of the children’s book Flowers, Fruits and Vegetables. Gene W. Lafitte (1950 BACH H&SS, 1952 JD), an attorney with Liskow & Lewis, New Orleans, was named to the 2017 edition of Best Lawyers in America in the areas of Antitrust Law, Appellate Practice, Betthe-Company Litigation, Commercial Litigation, Energy Law, Natural Resources Law, and Oil & Gas Law.


Patrick C. Morrow (1969 BACH H&SS, 1972 JD), founding partner of Morrow, Morrow, Ryan, Bassett & Haik, in Opelousas, La., received the Louisiana Association for Justice Stalwart Award in September for his extraordinary service to the association and the legal profession. A consistent supporter of the LAJ program and events, Morrow has served for thirty consecutive years on the

LAJ Board of Governors, Council of Directors, and Executive Committee, and on the association’s former Advisory Council. He has been recognized with numerous awards for his philanthropy, contributions, and leadership in his community, his parish, and the state. Candace Perry (1969 BACH H&SS), a clinical social worker and community organizer, moved to Wellfleet, Mass., with her husband, Charles Thibodeau, after many years in New Orleans, where she earned an MSW from Tulane University in 1972. They have three sons and three grandsons. In addition to her social work career, she is a writer with fiction and nonfiction published in Ms. Magazine, The Roanoke Review, New Orleans Magazine, Gambit, and The Sun. In 2000 she began writing for theater. More than thirty of her short plays have been produced around the country and in 2015 she was awarded a commission for her full-length play, "Along the River Road." Most recently, a collection of six of her short plays, "Struggles, and Other Love Stories," played to full houses and standing ovations in Wellfleet. Visit George H. Robinson, Jr. (1969 BACH BUS, 1974 JD), an attorney with Liskow & Lewis, Lafayette, La., was named to the 2017 edition of Best Lawyers in America in the areas of Energy Law and Admiralty & Maritime Law. John M. Wilson (1964 BACH H&SS, 1967 JD), an attorney with Liskow & Lewis, Lafayette, La., was named to the 2017 edition of Best Lawyers in America in the areas Betthe-Company Litigation, Commercial Litigation, and Litigation-Environmental.


William Blake Bennett (1979 BACH H&SS, 1982 JD), an attorney with Liskow & Lewis, New Orleans, was named to the 2017 edition of Best Lawyers in America in the areas of Banking & Finance Law and Gaming Law. Jeffrey Carbo (1975 BACH A&D), of CARBO Landscape Architects, received an Honor Award-Analysis and Planning for the

Baton Rouge lakes project and an Honor Award-General Design for a project for the St. Landry Tourist Commission, at the American Society of Landscape Architects annual meeting in October. David R. Cassidy (1972 BACH H&SS, 1975 JD), an attorney with Breazeale, Sachse & Wilson, Baton Rouge, was named to the 2017 edition of Best Lawyers in America in the areas of Litigation & Controversy-Tax and Tax Law.

G. Steven Duplechain (1979 JD), a manager at GSD Development Company, Baton Rouge, was appointed to the advisory board of First Bank and Trust Company. Duplechain, an attorney, is an adjunct professor in the Ourso College of Business. Rachel L. Emanuel (1977 BACH MCOM, 1990 MAST MCOM), director of communications and development support at the Southern University

SHARE YOUR NEWS Share news of your new job or promotion, your wedding, honors, awards, new babies, and other

celebrations with fellow alumni. To submit an item and photos for publication, e-mail or call 225-578-3370.

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Law Center, has joined the Foundation for Historical Louisiana (FHL) Board of Directors, serving on the preservation and business development committees. A documentarian and biographer, Emanuel supported the National Register nomination of the Seventh Ward residence of the late New Orleans civil rights attorney A.P. Tureaud in 2006. As a member of the Tureaud Legacy Committee, she participated in the ceremony unveiling the marker on the Tureaud home in 2012. Gregory D. Frost (1977 BACH H&SS, 1981 JD), an attorney with Breazeale, Sachse & Wilson, Baton Rouge, was named to the 2017 edition of Best Lawyers in America in the areas of Government Relations Practice and Health Care Law.

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Tom Holden (1975 BACH A&D), founder of Holden Architects, Baton Rouge, was appointed to the advisory board of First Bank and Trust. Mickey R. Hubbell (1978 BACH BUS, 1980 MAST BUS, 1987 JD), an attorney with Breazeale, Sachse & Wilson, Baton Rouge, was named to the 2017 edition of Best Lawyers in America in the area of Real Estate Law.

Marilyn C. Maloney (1972 BACH H&SS, 1975 JD), an attorney with Liskow & Lewis, Houston, was named to the 2017 edition of Best Lawyers in America in the areas of Banking & Finance Law, Real Estate Law, and Trademark Law. James N. Mansfield III (1976 BACH H&SS, 1979 JD), an attorney with Liskow & Lewis, Lafayette, La., was named a Lawyer of the Year in the 2017 edition of Best Lawyers in America in the area of Energy Law.

Eve B. Masinter (1979 BACH H&SS, 1982 JD), an attorney with Breazeale, Sachse & Wilson, New Orleans, was named to the 2017 edition of Best Lawyers in America in the area of Litigation-Labor & Employment. Linda Messina (1972 BACH MEDNO Medical Technology) received a Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching in Washington, D.C., in September. Messina has taught at St. Joseph’s Academy in Baton Rouge for twenty-two years and is the school’s Science Fair coordinator. She was one of only 213 mathematics and science teachers from across the country to receive the award.

Richard W. Revels, Jr. (1972 BACH H&SS, 1990 JD), an attorney with Liskow & Lewis, Lafayette, La., was named to the 2017 edition of Best Lawyers in America in the areas of Energy Law, Mining Law, Natural Resources Law, and Oil & Gas Law. Claude F. Reynaud, Jr. (1974 BACH BUS), an attorney with Breazeale, Sachse & Wilson, Baton Rouge, was named to the 2017 edition of Best Lawyers in America in the areas of Commercial Litigation, Litigation-Antitrust, and LitigationIntellectual Property.

Michael Scarborough (attended 1974-1975) had work included in the online exhibition Flashback/ Fast Forward sponsored by the Center for Art in Wood. The exhibition featured the work of more than fifty artists from the center’s forty-year history. Visit exhibition Jon W. Wise (1979 BACH H&SS, 1983 JD) has joined the New Orleans office of Chaffe McCall as a partner in the firm’s admiralty and litigation sections. An experienced oil, gas, and energy litigator, Wise has significant experience in commercial litigation including cases that involve breach of contract, deceptive

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Tiger Nation

trade practices, and trade secrets, as well as construction litigation.


Robert S. Angelico (1980 BACH BUS), an attorney with Liskow & Lewis, New Orleans, was named to the 2017 edition of Best Lawyers in America in the area of Tax Law.

John C. Anjier (1984 BACH H&SS, 1990 JD), an attorney with Liskow & Lewis, New Orleans, was named to the 2017 edition of Best Lawyers in America in the areas of Commercial Litigation, LitigationSecurities, and Securities-Capital Markets Law. George Arceneaux III (1983 BACH H&SS, 1986 JD), an attorney with Liskow & Lewis, New Orleans, was named to the 2017 edition of Best Lawyers in America in the areas of Commercial LitigationEnvironmental and Oil & Gas Law. Kinder Baumgardner (1987 BACH A&D), president of SWA, a leading international landscape architecture, planning, and urban design firm, received three major awards at the 2016 American Society of Landscape Architects annual meeting in October – an Honor AwardGeneral Design for a project in Ningbo, China; an Honor Award – Analysis and Planning for a Houston Parks Board project; and an Honor Award-Analysis and Planning for the Baton Rouge lakes project.

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James A. Brown (1981 BACH H&SS, 1984 JD), an attorney with Liskow & Lewis, New Orleans, was named a Lawyer of the Year in the 2017 edition of Best Lawyers in America in the area of Professional Malpractice Law-Defendants. Stacy Smith Brown (1986 BACH BUS), an attorney with Thompson & Knight, Houston, was named to the 2017 edition of Best Lawyers in America in the area of Oil & Gas Law. Jude C. Bursavich (1983 BACH H&SS, 1988 JD), an attorney with Breazeale, Sachse & Wilson, Baton Rouge, was named to the 2017 edition of Best Lawyers in America in the areas of Commercial Litigation and Litigation-Health Care. David M. Charlton (1980 BACH BUS, 1983 JD), an attorney with Breazeale, Sachse & Wilson, Baton Rouge, was named to the 2017 edition of Best Lawyers in America in the area of Closely Held Companies and Family Businesses Law. Paul E. Comeaux (1988 BACH H&SS, 1991 JD), an attorney with Thompson & Knight, Dallas, was named to the 2017 edition of Best Lawyers in America in the area of Real Estate Law.

Arthur J. “Jamie” Ensley, Jr. (1987 BACH BUS), of Atlanta, was named Decatur City executive of Cornerstone Bank in June. With more than twenty years of banking experience, including his services as senior vice president and commercial lender with Decatur First Bank, Ensley has served as an SBA business development officer with Wells Fargo and most recently with Evolve Bank and Trust. He is national chairman for the Log Cabin Republicans, campaign treasurer for Atlanta citywide Councilwoman Mary Norwood, and served as the chairman of the 76th annual Atlanta Dogwood Festival. He was listed as one of twenty-eight national politically involved LGBT Republicans in the July issue of the Advocate. James C. Exnicios (1980 BACH BUS, 1987 JD), an attorney with Liskow & Lewis, New Orleans, was named a Lawyer of the Year in the 2017 edition of Best Lawyers in America in the area of Tax Law. Emily Black Grey (1997 BACH H&SS, 2002 JD), an attorney with Breazeale, Sachse & Wilson, Baton Rouge, was named to the 2017 edition of Best Lawyers in America in the area of Health Care Law. Mary Legoria (1981 BACH AGR, 1989 BACH HS&E, 1995 MAST HS&E, 1998 EDCI, 2012 PHD HS&E), an elementary science lab teacher at Westdale Heights Academic Magnet School in Baton Rouge, received a Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching in Washington, D.C., in September. Legoria has taught in the East Baton Rouge School system for more than twenty-two years and has been a science specialist for more than ten years.

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Tiger Nation

She was one of only 213 mathematics and science teachers from across the country to receive the award. Trenton J. Oubre (1987 BACH BUS, 1991 JD), an attorney with Breazeale, Sachse & Wilson, Baton Rouge, was named to the 2017 edition of Best Lawyers in America in the area of Workers Compensation Law-Employers. Michael E. Schonberg (1989 BACH BUS), an attorney with Thompson & Knight, Dallas, was named to the 2017 edition of Best Lawyers in America in the areas of Dallas Litigation-Intellectual Property and Trade Secrets Law.

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Brian E. Anderson (1995 MSW, 1999 BACH A&D), associate professor of social work at Jackson State University in Jackson, Miss., is a founding member of the National Association of Social Workers in Sports, which aims to elevate the channels in which the practice of social work can benefit the sports sector on a grand scale. Anderson has long-standing coaching experience with high school athletes, college basketball players, and young people involved in the Amateur Athletic Union. He recently was appointed to a three-year term on the national accrediting body of the Council on Social Work Education Commission on Educational Policy.

John Andrishok (1993 BACH BUS, 1997 JD), an attorney with Breazeale, Sachse & Wilson, Baton Rouge, was named to the 2017 edition of Best Lawyers in America in the area of Construction Law. Hebert F. Frederick III (1991 BACH BUS), a captain in the U.S. Navy, is the new commander of Navy Region Southeast Reserve Component Command Fort Worth, Texas. Frederick was most recently commanding officer of Navy Operational Support Center Norfolk, Va. He was commissioned through the Southern University A&M College's Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps in 1991 and earned his wings as a Naval Flight Officer in 1993. He reported to the "Grey Knights" of VP46 for his initial sea tour and has served in Misawa, Japan; Diego Garcia, British

Indian Ocean Territory; and Masirah, Oman. Frederick graduated from the Navy War College in-residence class with a master’s degree in national security and strategic studies and completed his Joint Professional Military Education in 2012. His awards include the Meritorious Service Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal, Southwest Asia Medal, and Global War on Terrorism Service Medal. Scott N. Hensgens (1993 BACH H&SS), an attorney with Breazeale, Sachse & Wilson, Baton Rouge, was named to the 2017 edition of Best Lawyers in America in the areas of Litigation-Intellectual Property and Trademark Law.

Todd D. Keator (1999 BACH H&SS, 2002 JD), an attorney with Thompson & Knight, Dallas, was selected for inclusion in Texas Super Lawyers 2016 and named to the 2017 edition of Best Lawyers in America in the area of Tax Law Jenee Slocum (1999 BACH MCOM) was named director of the Reilly Center for Media & Public Affairs in the Manship School of Mass Communication. She was previously policy director of the Louisiana Budget Project and also served as director of the Workforce Investment Council of the Louisiana Workforce Commission. Slocum, a former president of LSU Student Government, earned her

master’s and doctoral degrees in education from UCLA. Tracy Young (1997 BACH H&SS), of Dallas, recently launched a communications consultancy and is working with a variety of nonprofit clients including the Laura Bush Foundation for America’s Libraries. Before starting her own business, she was director of education reform at the George W. Bush Institute, part of the George W. Bush Presidential Center, and prior to that she was with the Texas Charter Schools Association in Austin, Texas, and director of communications for Texas House Speaker Joe Straus. She served at the White House and the U.S. Department of Education from 2001 to 2009 during the George W. Bush administration.

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Young has been active with Young Life since her days at LSU and continues to support and volunteer.


Sebastian Alvarez (2005 BACH A&D), executive vice president of Alvarez Construction Company, Baton Rouge, was appointed to the advisory board of First Bank and Trust. Alvarez is also a board member for McMains Children’s Developmental Center. Christopher Tillman Britt (2008 BACH SCI, 2012 MAST SCI, 2013 PHD SCI), a postdoctoral researcher in the Texas Tech University Department of Physics, was lead author on a team to witness the loneliest young star CX330 that has been outbursting for several years. In fact from comparing WISE data from 2010 with Spitzer Space Telescope data from 2007, CX330's brightness had increased a few hundred times. Christopher L. “Chris” Chauvin (2001 BACH H&SS, 2004 JD), a partner at Thompson & Knight, Dallas, was selected for inclusion in Benchmark Litigation Under 40 Hot List-2016. Marissa DeCuir (2008 BACH MCOM), longtime managing director at JKS Communications, was promoted to president and partner of the firm, which is headquartered in Nashville with satellite operations in New Orleans, Atlanta, and Charlotte. DeCuir joined JKS eight years ago as a book publicist. A former journalist with USA Today and

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Gannett Company, her work has been featured in National Geographic and the Chicago Sun-Times. While at LSU, she served as managing editor of The Daily Reveille and Tamar Gregorian (2007 MAST MCOM), director of public relations and special events with The Marketing Hub in New Orleans, has successfully completed the Examination for Accreditation in Public Relations, entitling her to use the APR professional designation. A graduate of Destrehan High School, Gregorian earned a bachelor’s degree from Loyola University in New Orleans and is pursuing a doctoral degree at the University of Southern Mississippi. Bryan Jeansonne (2002 BACH H&SS) was honored with the Dr. W. Turrentine Jackson Outstanding Chapter Advisor Award at the 154th anniversary convention of Theta Xi Fraternity in August in Minneapolis, Minn. He has served as chapter adviser for LSU’s chapter of Theta Xi fraternity since 2008. Valencia Sarpy Jones (2005 BACH H&SS), of Cloutierville, La. was appointed by Gov. John Bel Edwards to the LSU Board of Supervisors, representing the 4th Congressional District. Jones is a financial services professional with New York Life Insurance Company & NYLIFE Securities. Alicia A. Modenbach (2006 BACH ENGR), an engineer associate in the Department of Biosystems & Agricultural Engineering at the University of

Kentucky, received a 2016 Gale A. Holloway Professional Development Award from the American Society of Agrcultural & Biological Engineers for exemplary achievement of career development and membership activities. Judson Moore (2007 BACH H&SS) writes that he “has ascended to his next adventure!” Moore is now living in Düsseldorf, Germany, and is working at the world headquarters of Trivago as industry manager for B2B Relations-USA market. He makes frequent business trips to the United States to partner with hotel industry influencers and tourism boards to empower hoteliers to compete better online and rank higher on, the world's largest hotel metasearch. Read about Moore’s work at, and follow his adventures at JudsonLMoore. com and @JudsonLMoore. Christopher K. “Chris” Odinet (2007 BACH H&SS, 2010 JD), assistant professor of law and the Horatio C. Thompson Endowed Professor at the Southern University Law Center, was named an inaugural Real Property Scholar with the American College of Real Estate Lawyers (ACREL). As part of the program, Odinet will have the opportunity to work collaboratively in one or more projects or presentations for ACREL and the American Bar Association's Real Property, Trust, and Estate Law Section. He is currently serving as a Louisiana Bar Foundation Scholar-in-Residence. Koren Smith (2006 MAST SCI), a clinical medical physicist at Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center, has been elected to the American Association of Physicists

in Medicine Board of Directors as an atlarge member for a three-year term starting in January 2017.


Marco Barker (2010 PHD HS&E) was named associate vice president for diversity, equity, and inclusion and chief diversity officer at Westminster College in Salt Lake City, Utah. He collaborates with faculty and staff, builds and cultivates relationships with community partners; works with the college Diversity Council to develop, implement, and establish metrics and benchmarks for a diversity and inclusion plan; and monitors emerging trends, practices, and research.

Chris Cummings (2010 BACH H&SS, 2013 JD) generated attention for his startup, Pass It Down, after winning the $20,000 semi-final prize at Miller Lite's Tap the Future innovation competition. Pass It Down beat more than 15,000 startups to make it to the final six in a contest judged by Daymond John, founder of FUBU and a co-star of ABC television's Shark Tank. Pass It Down moved on to the finals in Chicago to compete for the $200,000 first-place prize and finished second by just a few points. Pass It Down is a digital storytelling platform that helps families capture, share, and preserve memories in multi-media. Visit

Josephine “Jo� Hall (2011 MAST M&DA), assistant professor of theater at Greensboro College, has joined the cast of the national tour of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time. She is taking a brief sabbatical from her position. Mollie Smoak (2016 BACH ENGR) was awarded a fellowship in the 2016 Ford Foundation Fellowship Programs competition administered by the Fellowships Office of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. Smoak is one of sixty students awarded a fellowship as part of the predoctoral competition. Smoak, a 2015 Goldwater Scholar and 2016 National

LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016


Tiger Nation

Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow, was a member of the Roger Hadfield Ogden Honors College and LASTEM Research Scholars Program at LSU. She graduated as a CxC Distinguished Communicator and plans to attend graduate school at Rice University in bioengineering. William Baumgardner (2016 BACH A&D), a member of the design team at Ten Eyck Landscape Architect, Austin, Texas, received an Honor AwardAnalysis and Planning for his proposal, “Harnessing the Beating Heart of Living Systems Infrastructure on Tonle Sap Lake, Cambodia,” at the American Society of Landscape Architects annual meeting in October. Jana M. Benson (2012 BACH BUS, 2015 JD) has joined the Dallas office of Thompson & Knight as an associate in the tax practice group. She was a summer associate with the firm and earned a master’s of law in taxation from New York University in May 2016. Sunantana Nuanla-or (2016 MAST A&D), a landscape designer at PLAT Studio, Berkeley, Calif., received an Honor Award-Analysis and Planning Category for

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her thesis, “Creating Sustainable Future of Mae Kha Canal in Chiang Mai, Thailand,” at the American Society of Landscape Architects annual meeting in October. Rene Ybarra (2010 BACH BUS), a captain in the U.S. Army, took company command of the 138th Movement Control Team in July at Osan AFB, South Korea. Ybarra was commissioned through LSU ROTC. His wife, Laura (2009 BACH MCOM), who received a master's degree in public relations from Ball State University in May, was recognized in September at a graduation ceremony held at Camp Humphreys, South Korea, for military service members and their family members who were unable to travel back to the United States to receive their degrees.

Alumni-By-Choice Katja McCurdy (Alumna-By-Choice), of Roseville, Calif., has accepted a position as a management trainee for Enterprise Rent-a-Car in Auburn, Calif.



Nicholas Quint (2010 BACH A&D) and Taylor Freeman (2008 BACH HS&E) were married on July 16 at the Old Silk Mill in Fredericksburg, Va. The couple resides in Fredericksburg, where Nicholas is a transportation planner and Taylor is an art therapist. The newlyweds enjoy LSU football, bicycling, yoga, and hiking with their spaniel, Toula.


BENGALS Kelly F. Carmon (2007 BACH BUS) and her husband, Chris, welcomed their daughter, Grayson Anne, at 4:40 p.m. on Aug. 17, 2016. Grayson weighed 7 lbs. 11 oz. and was 19 1/4 inches long. She was welcomed home by big brother Peyton. The Carmon family resides in Little Rock, Ark.

Patrick Henken (2007 BACH H&SS) and Angela Kopynec Henken (2007 BACH H&SS) announce the birth of their first child, Erin Elizabeth, on Oct. 13, 2016, at 3:41 a.m. Erin weighed 6 pounds and was 20.5 inches long. She is the first grandchild of Tim Henken (1980 BACH BUS) and Jia Henken, of Houston, and John Kopynec (1983 JD) and Betty Powers (1969 BACH H&SS, 1972 MSW), of Baton Rouge. The family resides in Jacksonville, Fla.

Brandon Mackey (2011 BACH H&SS) and Kimberly Miller Mackey (2008 BACH A&D) proudly announce the birth of future Tiger, Lane Amelia, on July 1, 2016, at 4:20 p.m. Lane weighed 5 lbs. 11 oz. and was 18 1/2 inches long. The family resides in Baton Rouge.

LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016


Tiger Nation

Tigers in Print

Christopher Everette Cenac, Sr. (1971 MD-New Orleans) Hard Scrabble to Hallelujah: Volume I Bayou Terrebonne was chosen for the University Press of Mississippi’s America’s Third Coast Series. Although disasters of the past decade – from Hurricanes Lili, Katrina, Rita, Humberto, Gustav, Ike, and Isaac to the massive BP oil spill – have drawn international attention to the fragility, vulnerability, and consequence of the Louisiana Gulf Coast, the scholarly scrutiny given to this area has failed to reflect its significance. The series fills this noticeable void with publications on Gulf Coast history, life, and culture. In particular, this series will highlight the economic activities and environmental stewardship of the inhabitants of this diverse region. Written by leading scholars in the field, the series offers readers important insights into a timely discussion on restoring and rehabilitating the coast with the coastal population, for the first time, at the forefront of the nation’s consciousness. Jadah Chatterjee (2001 BACH HS&E) with Sarah T. Brown and Carol Kim Sticky: A Germ’s Story (Children’s Hospital Los Angeles) Sticky: A Germ’s Story teaches children about the importance of hand hygiene. While Sticky tries to talk youngsters out of washing their hands, a doctor and nurse give kids the right message: Clean hands keep people

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from getting sick. The book, which features side-by-side English and Spanish text, engages children at a developmentally appropriate level with simple explanations and bright, colorful illustrations, speaking to them in terms they can understand. Tom Continé (1958 BACH M&DA) and Faye Phillips, retired LSU Associate Dean of Libraries for Special Collections The Golden Band from Tigerland (LSU Press) Well over a century has passed since two cadets of the Ole War Skule decided to create a brass band for their university, beginning a tradition that continues to the present day. World renowned for its commitment to excellence, LSU’s Golden Band from Tigerland celebrates the sports endeavors of the school teams, creates pride in school traditions, and entertains millions of fans every year. This illustrated history of LSU’s beloved marching band moves from its military inspiration through the directorships of Castro Carazo, William F. Swor, and Frank B. Wickes to the first female drum major, Kristie Smith. The book highlights the band’s recent triumphs as well, including the Sudler Trophy awarded by the John Philip Sousa Foundation, induction into the Louisiana Music Hall of Fame, and traveling abroad to march in Hong Kong’s Chinese New Year celebration and Dublin’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade. The excitement of the Pregame Salute,

the triumphant spirit of the halftime show, and the hard work that goes into the performances are captured in 150 photographs – serving as an enduring tribute to the generations of LSU students whose talent and energy transformed a small brass group into an acclaimed marching band. Matthew Harper (2001 BACH H&SS) The End of Days: African American Religion and Politics in the Age of Emancipation (University of North Carolina Press) For four million slaves, emancipation was a liberation and resurrection story of biblical proportion, both the clearest example of God’s intervention in human history and a sign of the end of days. Matthew Harper demonstrates how black southerners’ theology, in particular their understanding of the end times, influenced nearly every major economic and political decision they made in the aftermath of emancipation. From considering what demands to make in early Reconstruction to deciding whether or not to migrate west, African-American Protestants consistently inserted themselves into biblical narratives as a way of seeing the importance of their own struggle in God’s greater plan for humanity. Phrases like “jubilee,” “Zion,” “valley of dry bones,” and the “New Jerusalem” in black-authored political documents invoked different stories from the Bible to argue for different political strategies.

DEAR LSU ALUMNI FAMILY, We are pleased to announce the creation of two new scholarship programs for your children. Beginning in fall 2017, the Louisiana Tiger Legacy Scholarship and the Tiger Alumni Legacy Scholarship will be available to eligible incoming students Mo Isom (2011 BACH MCOM) Wreck My Life: Journeying from Broken to Bold (Baker Books) On the outside, Mo Isom appeared to have it all. She was beautiful, energetic, and successful. She was an AllAmerican goal keeper for LSU, the first female to try out for an SEC, Division I men’s football team, and was crowned Homecoming Queen. But despite outward appearances, Isom was no exception to the human condition of suffering, and she responded by trying desperately to control her life and pain with anger and blame. It took her failed attempt at control, coming out from behind the mask, facing the truth about her bulimia, facing the anger over her beloved father’s suicide, as well as the resulting depression, overcoming promiscuity and enduring a tragic car accident that quite literally shattered her body and her entire world to find the true peace that had been waiting for her all along. Harvey Meredith (1958 BACH AGR) The Search (Xlibris) This story is an insight into the views and understandings of someone raised in a strict Catholic family, forced to learn a religion at the earliest age. This study was undertaken after a near lifetime of reflection upon the beliefs and the basis of his religious teachings. This exercise in researching the teachings of the Catholic Church, and Christian religion in general, exposes the triangle of fear, guilt, and doubt about the religion driven from Rome, that has cemented his personal beliefs. Living through the jungle of regimented hypocrisy, lemming-like beliefs and teaching tactics, has provided the incentive to personally investigate the subject of Christian religion and to learn as much as possible about the subject that has survived nearly two-thousand years. Richard Edgar Zwez (1974 PHD H&SS) New Orleans Light: The Sparkling City Johnny Smith, a college student, finds that his attendance at the University of New Orleans leads him to humorous situations with faculty and fellow students. In his free time he wanders through the Big Easy enjoying the multiple attractions of the City That Care Forgot. With his carefree frame of mind, he finds that his life is full of funny interactions with his odd family and interesting friends. This leads him to discover and react to laughable situations that highlight the sparkling character of the city. And he is ready for good fortune when it appears.

who meet the following criteria:


SCHOLARSHIP PROGRAM for children of alumni in Louisiana found at FRESHMEN · $500 annual scholarship for a 24-25 ACT or SAT equivalent · $750 annual scholarship for a 26-27 ACT or SAT equivalent · $1,000 annual scholarship for a 28 or above ACT score or SAT equivalent.

TRANSFER (admitted to LSU with at least 30 credit hours) · $750 annual scholarship for a 3.0-3.49 GPA · $1,000 to incoming qualified transfers who have a 3.5 or above GPA.


SCHOLARSHIP PROGRAM for children of alumni living outside Louisiana found at · 10 percent non-resident undergraduate fee exemption · Awarded to full-time, non-resident freshmen and transfer students whose parents graduated from LSU · LSU is proud to offer these new benefits to members of our Tiger family. Your child will also be welcomed into the 170,000-strong alumni worldwide network, which can help and mentor your Tiger in their careers and future endeavors. If you have any questions about these programs or any other scholarship opportunity for your future Tiger, please do not hesitate to contact LSU Financial Aid & Scholarships or call 225-578-3103.

Encourage your future Tiger to take advantage of all the benefits an LSU degree delivers by applying today at

LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016


Tiger Nation

In Memoriam Mike VI passed away on Oct. 11, 2016. Mike was born on July 23, 2005, and adopted by LSU in 2007. He was eleven years old at the time of his passing. Mike was humanely euthanized in his night house by Dr. David Baker, LSU’s attending veterinarian. He was diagnosed with spindle cell sarcoma in May 2016 and underwent stereotactic radiotherapy on June 1, 2016, at Mary Bird Perkins-Our Lady of the Lake Cancer Center. He entered hospice care in his night house on Oct. 10 so his caretakers could observe him to ensure that he did not suffer. Share memories at #MikeVI Photo by Eddy Perez/LSU Strategic Communications



Mary Smith Hadden, 1931 BACH HS&E, 1960 MAST HS&E, St. Francisville, La.

Edmund Cleophas Bacon, 1960 BACH HS&E, Aug. 2, 2016, Baton Rouge, La. Judith Arlene Bunch, 1961 BACH HS&E, 1966 MLS, Aug. 8, 2016, Baton Rouge, La. David R. Carpenter, 1960 BACH BUS, July 17, 2016, Baton Rouge, La. Richard Cowlishaw, 1966 BACH A&D, June 20, 2016, Metairie, La. Felix Tabary Cucullu, Jr., 1961 BACH ENGR, Sept. 1, 2016, Baker, La. Kenneth R. D’Armond, 1961 BACH SCI, Aug. 13, 2016, Baton Rouge, La. Janet Richardson Seay Dixon, 1960 BACH HS&E, 1970 MAST HS&E, July 13, 2016, Baton Rouge, La. Jenny Laine Hamilton, 1969 BACH H&SS, Sept. 5, 2016, Baton Rouge, La. Douglas Lee Landry, 1963 MAST HS&E, Aug. 23, 2016, Belle Rose, La. Robert Joseph Linton, Jr., 1961 BACH ENGR, Oct. 10, 2016, The Woodlands, Texas Edwin Dale McCarter, 1961 BACH ENGR, Aug. 8, 2016, Midland, Texas Travis Ezell Owen, 1960 MAST SCI, Sept. 16, 2016, New Iberia, La. Kenneth W. Paxton, Professor Emeritus of Agricultural Economics & Agribusiness, 1965 BACH AGR, 1967 MAST AGR, Aug. 23, 2016, Baton Rouge, La. Jeffrey L. Plauche , Sr., 1962 HS&E, Sept. 28, 2016, Ventress, La. Robert Ray Rainer, 1963 MAST MCOM, 1971 JD, Oct. 4, 2016, Baton Rouge, La. Jette Geier Riffel, 1962 BACH H&SS, July 18 2016, Baton Rouge, La. James Dale Riffel, 1964 BACH BUS, Oct. 2, 2016, Baton Rouge, La. Frances Elizabeth Prichard Roark, 1965 MAST HS&E, Sept. 27, 2016, Baton Rouge, La Robert Norton Sanders, 1966 PHD SCI, Oct. 8, 2016, Baton Rouge, La. James E. Toups, 1968 JD, Aug. 10, 2016, Baton Rouge, La.

1940s Verdell Leo Blakly, 1941 BACH BUS, Oct. 12, 2016, Baton Rouge, La. Marian Claire Bordelon Braud, 1945 BACH MCOM, Aug 17, 2016, Marksville, La. Joseph Edwin DeJean, Sr., 1948 BACH MCOM, July 23, 2016, Baton Rouge, La. Vernon Lucas Dixon, Sr., 1948 BACH AGR, Oct. 2, 2016, Baton Rouge, La. Phyllis Walden Gernand, 1946 BACH BUS, Aug. 14, 2016, Prairieville, La. William Culpepper Haile, Sr., 1947 MD, Sept. 30, 2016, Baton Rouge, La. Arnold E. “Andy” Kauffman, 1949 BACH ENGR, July 31, 2016, Midland, Texas Mary Elaine Herring Litschgi, 1943 BACH BUS, Sept. 20, 2016, Tampa, Fla. Will Green Mangham, 1948 BACH BUS, Oct. 3, 2016, Baton Rouge, La. Lawrence Mann, Jr., 1949 BACH ENGR, Edward McLaughlin Professor of Engineering Emeritus, Oct. 8, 2016, Baton Rouge, La. James W. Mize, 1946 BACH HS&E, Sept. 24, 2016, Baton Rouge, La.

1950s Daniel Eugene “Dan” Bivins III, 1954 BACH MCOM, Retired Assistant Vice Chancellor for Alumni Affairs/University Relations, Editor, LSU Alumni News, July 31, 2016, Chesapeake, Va. Robert L. Daniel, Jr., 1950 BACH ENGR, Aug. 30, 2016, Baton Rouge, La. Peter P. Finney, Sr., 1957 BACH MCOM, Aug. 13, 2017, New Orleans, La. John L. Godso, Jr., 1958 BACH ENGR, Aug. 22, 2016, Port Vincent, La. William Jerry Jacob Heirtzler, 1951 BACH AGR, July 22, 2016, Ethel, La. Miller W. Kerr, 1956 BACH ENGR, Aug. 10, 2016, Richmond, Va. Richard Finley Knight, 1955 BACH BUS, 1958 JD, Oct. 11, 2016, Baton Rouge, La. George R. Lefebvre, 1951 BACH ENGR, Aug. 18, 2016, Port Allen, La. Bernard Joseph McArdle, 1954 BACH HS&E, 1969 MAST HS&E, July 9, 2016, Baton Rouge, La. John Dudley McGregor, 1957 BACH BUS, Oct. 13, 2016, Baton Rouge, La. Joseph S. Modicut, 1954 BACH HS&E, Sept. 10, 2016, Orange Beach, Ala. Richard Allie Noel, 1951 BACH BUS, Aug. 1, 2016, Sugar Land, Texas Kenneth E. Osterberger, 1953 BACH AGR, Aug. 10, 2016, Baton Rouge, La. Hugh Raymond Purdue, Sr., 1950 BACH AGR, July 17, 2016, Baker, La. Ben J. Russell, 1951 BACH ENGR, May 31, 2016, Ocala, Fla. Rosalind Carolyn Smith Sigler, 1957 BACH AGR, Oct. 4, 2016, Baton Rouge, La.

1970s Frank Dee Blackburn, 1976 BACH H&SS, Sept. 28, 2016, Baton Rouge, La. Harry Kirkland “Kirk” Brown, 1970 BACH BUS, July 17, 2016, Baton Rouge, La. James Richard Daigle, 1971 MAST AGR, Aug. 23, 2016, Baton Rouge, La. Russell Richard Leach, Jr., 1975 BACH BUS, Sept. 1, 2016, Hot Springs, Ark. Jerry Thomas Lowe, 1971 BACH HS&E, 1981 MAST HS&E, Aug. 7, 2016, Baton Rouge, La. John Benton McCann, 1971 MAST HS&E, Aug. 5, 2016, Baton Rouge, La. Donald M. McDaniel, 1976 MAST HS&E, Sept. 24, 2016, Brittany, La. Ray Anthony Pecoraro, 1979 BACH H&SS, Aug. 13, 2016, Baton Rouge, La. Michael Thomas Perry, 1976 BACH BUS, 1980 JD, Aug. 5, 2016, Baton Rouge, La. Sarah Madison Romero, 1977 BACH H&SS, Oct. 6, 2016, Baton Rouge, La.

If you would like to make a gift to the LSU Alumni Association in memory of a family member, friend or classmate, please contact our office for additional information at 225-578-3838 or 1-888-746-4578.

72 LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016

Jacqueline Ruth “Jackie” Shellington, 1975 BACH H&SS, 1984 MSW, July 23, 2016, Baton Rouge, La. William Alsey Taylor Sr., 1975 BACH H&SS, Aug. 17, 2016, Baton Rouge, La. Denise Ann Whittington, 1971 BACH H&SS, July 28, 2016, Central, La.


Patrick Louis Doucet, 1990 BACH H&SS, July 21, 2016, Fordoche, La. Lesly Joy Hodges Gautreau, 1991 BACH H&SS, 1995 MAST H&SS, July 17, 2016, Smryna, Ga. Lana Aldridge Metoyer, 1991 BACH SCI, July 28, 2016, Lafayette, La. Lewis Jude Schmitt, Jr., 1991 BACH BUS, July 25, 2016, Baton Rouge, La.

Thomas Pierre “Tommy” Callegan, 1988 BACH BUS, July 21, 2016, Baton Rouge, La. Roy Lynn Durrett, 1983 BACH ENGR, July 16, 2016, New Roads, La. Linda Cheryl Farnsworth, 1985 MAST HS&E, Oct. 9, 2016, Baton Rouge, La. Michael Forest McCauley, 1982 BACH H&SS, Oct. 7, 2016, Baton Rouge, La. Andy Tumey, 1982 BACH H&SS, Sept. 14, 2016, Thousand Oaks, Calif.




Margaret M. DeGravelles, 2001 BACH AGR, 2007 DVM, Aug. 10, 2016, Baton Rouge, La. Jason C. Fontenot, 2003 BACH SCI, 2004 MAST BUS, Oct. 10, 2016, Broussard, La. Richard Daniel Hill, 2008 BACH H&SS, July 23, 2016, Baton Rouge, La.

Duane Anthony Brunet, 1990 BACH BUS, 1992 MBA, Oct. 7, 2016, Baton Rouge, La. Shonda M. Augustus, 2011 BACH HS&E, Sept. 18, 2016, Baker, La. John B. Baker, Jr., Professor and Head Emeritus of Botany Sept. 21, 2016 Baton Rouge, La.

Larry Lynn Higdon Alumni-by-Choice Caddo-Bossier Parish Alumni Chapter Aug. 11, 2016 Shreveport, La.

Alice Lover Dee Lemoine Neal Alice and Ernest Neal Professor of Geology July 27, 2016 Baton Rouge, La.

Paul Edward Koenig James “Coach Jimmy” Monroe Professor Emeritus of Chemistry Former Lod Cook Alumni and Assistant Vice Chancellor Center Docent for Academic Affairs July 10, 2016 Aug. 20, 2016 Baton Rouge, La. Brevard, N.C. Joseph A. Polack T. Bonner Stewart Professor Emeritus of Professor Emeritus of Parasitology Chemical Engineering School of Veterinary Medicine Aug. 17, 2016 July 23, 2916 Baton Rouge, La. Georgetown, Texas

LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016



Tiger Nation

Purple & Gold in Uganda By Ed Cullen

Peter Kiwanuka and his students at Bethany Centre in Uganda.

“When the children came up to us, they were wearing purple and gold and saying, ‘Go Tigers.’ It was so unexpected.”

Not just LSU graduates form lasting relationships with their alma mater. Peter Kiwanuka, of Uganda, was at LSU just three semesters, but he maintains a connection to the University and to his former host family, Steve Wilson (1975 BACH A&D, 1978 MAST A&D) and his wife, Claire (1979 BACH H&SS, 1993 MLS). Their bond is Bethany Centre, a community organization situated between Kampala and Entebbe that is a primary school for local children, many of them orphans of the AIDS epidemic. The center ministers to HIV and AIDS patients in their homes. “He was a student at LSU for one-anda-half years,” said Claire Wilson. When his money ran out, he went to Chicago in 2003 to work for another host family. He returned to Uganda after about a year in Chicago when his visa ran out. Kiwanuka lost his father and a brother to AIDS. Sub-Saharan Africa has been affected by the AIDS epidemic more than any other part of the world. Even with increased awareness, AIDS is a major problem in Uganda. “You go to Uganda, now,” Claire Wilson said, “and you see these billboards of a middle-aged man. The billboards say something like, ‘It’s not OK for your teenage daughter to have [relations] with him.’”

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Kiwanuka wanted to offer a better life not just to AIDS patients but to all the young people near his mother’s village of Jjungo, some thirty miles from Kampala. Visit Jjungo, as Claire Wilson has twice, and you will see something else, the effect LSU had on Kiwanuka during his short stay in Baton Rouge. The school building is painted purple and gold. The children’s uniforms feature purple shirts with gold collars. “He has a high regard for LSU,” Claire Wilson said. “We didn’t know he’d pick those colors.” “LSU is brilliant in his memory,” said Steve Burchfield (1978 BACH H&SS), who has visited the mission three times. “When the children came up to us, they were wearing purple and gold and saying, ‘Go Tigers.’ It was so unexpected.” Between 2008 and 2016, several members of the First Presbyterian Church congregation in Baton Rouge, where the Wilsons attend church, have visited Bethany Centre. The church has raised about $50,000 in support of Kiwanuka’s mission, and in six years, art shows hosted by the Wilsons’ stained glass studio has raised another $50,000. The fundraisers are part of the work of Bethany Centre Alliance, a nonprofit in Baton Rouge. A Louisiana couple not affiliated with First Presbyterian has contributed $150,000. Another $250,000 has come from churches and individual donors, according to the Wilsons.

The mission started in a chicken coop. The floor was dirt. There was no glass in the windows, no doors in the door frames. No running water. No electricity. Money raised by Bethany Centre Alliance, First Presbyterian, and other Louisianans has provided a school, water well, handwashing stations, a latrine, two large cisterns and a soccer field. Outhouses serve as bathrooms down a hill about thirty yards from the school, but there is electricity and running water. “The building is much on par with a nice school,” said Steve Burchfield. “Uganda is beautiful. The children (about 600) are well taken care of. That’s the main goal. The teachers, headmaster, and Peter are dedicated.” “When we were there in 2008,” Claire Wilson said, “I wanted to go with Peter to pick out uniforms. We had a donation of $2,000 from a couple at First Presbyterian. The clothing factory in Kampala was covered by a flat tin roof, open, like a booth, with women sitting out front working at old sewing machines. I think they were manual machines. I don’t know where they got the purple and gold material.” Kiwanuka met the Wilsons through the LSU International Hospitality Foundation in 2001. “I signed up and gave my contact info,” Kiwanuka said in an email interview from Uganda. “A few days later, I received a call from Steve. ‘Hello, Peter, this is Steve. I’m your host. My wife, Claire, and I would like to meet you around 1 p.m. and take you to lunch.’

Three minutes past one o’clock, Steve and Claire Wilson pulled up in front of West Laville Hall and off we went to the Vietnamese restaurant on Highland Road past The Chimes restaurant.” Kiwanuka’s memories of LSU include the reaction on campus to the Sept. 11, 2001, attack in New York. “On the morning of Sept. 11, I was seated in the cafeteria, news of the attack was on TV. It was a big shock to everyone. You could find many students on campus crying and others making frantic phone calls to their loved ones.” Kiwanuka had been on campus a week. “I will never forget the patriotism and love for the country shown by the American people during and after Sept. 11.” His time at the Baptist Student Center and memories of LSU football (and tailgating) stand out in his memory, but it’s First Presbyterian and its people that Kiwanuka recalls when he says, “First Presbyterian is a fundamental supporter of Bethany Ministry for almost ten years now. We are continually inspired by this wonderful church. It’s the reason we continue to work hard in order to make a difference in our community.”

Peter Kiwanuka, center, with Steve and Claire Wilson.

Ed Cullen, an LSU journalism graduate, is author of Letter in a Woodpile, a collection of his essays for National Public Radio’s “All Things Considered.” He is retired from the Baton Rouge Advocate where he wrote the Sunday column “Attic Salt.”

LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016



Tiger Nation

Agboka’s Career ‘Worthy of Watching’

By Ed Cullen

Ofori Agboka, an Automotive News “Rising Star.”

“I felt like HR and labor relations were where I could help the most people and help the business at the same time.”

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Ofori Agboka (1998 BACH SCI) makes a simple comparison between his rise at General Motors and his football days at LSU. Agboka, a Michigan high school football player who came to LSU in 1994 on an academic scholarship while Curley Hallman was football coach, played for Gerry DiNardo. The 5’ 10”, 185-pound Agboka played on a team that included Kevin Faulk, Gabe Northern, Alan Faneca, Eddie Kennison, Rondell Mealey, and Anthony McFarland. How he parlayed a degree in psychology into a career as a General Motors executive was not unlike learning LSU’s offensive football scheme. “You watch films, but then you have to get into the game and play,” he said in a telephone interview from his Michigan office. Agboka majored in psychology thinking he wanted to become a psychiatrist. One day, he was talking to a neighbor – a leader at GM – about football and life after football. “He encouraged me to apply for an internship,” Agboka said. “I thought everyone at GM was an engineer.” He landed not one but two paid internships at GM – in 1996 and 1997. GM has 200,000 employees but only 1,500 executives. Agboka set his sights on the smaller group. This year, Agboka, human resources (HR) director of GM’s North American Manufacturing and Operations, was named a “Rising Star” by Automotive News. The award from the ninety-oneyear-old publication recognizes Agboka’s “influential efforts as a young executive leader, mentor, and champion for organizational excellence.” The award honors executives under forty-five years old whose careers are deemed worthy of watching. Agboka’s job involves GM plants around the world that make everything from car engines to batteries. His team looks at the number of worker shifts, production volume, and “the right amount of product for demand.” “I’m responsible for helping put

the right people in those positions, generational differences, labor issues, culture, health care planning, and performance rating. Typical HR stuff, but on a global basis,” he said. Assignments in China in 2007 and Switzerland in 2013 required study, including language. “I had language class every Sunday in Mandarin Chinese,” he said. “I learned a lot from my driver, and he learned English from me.” In Zurich, where Agboka was HR director for Chevrolet and Cadillac Europe, he kept tabs on GM operations in Hungary, Italy, Poland, Austria, Germany, and Portugal. In China, he reported to an executive, and his duties extended to operations in Korea, Thailand, Australia, and India. The China posting came after GM’s 2009 bankruptcy and meant Agboka had to wear more than one hat. He looks back on China as a challenging and rewarding time. Between assignments in China and Switzerland, he was promoted to HR director for GM Global Design, based in Warren, Mich. Agboka began his career as a labor relations representative at GM’s truck plant in Arlington, Texas. He spent a year in the body shop to get a feeling for manufacturing. “I felt like HR and labor relations were where I could help the most people and help the business at the same time,” he told Automotive News. “You can change one policy and affect the entire plant.” Agboka, son of a father from Ghana and a mother from New Orleans, was born in Lansing and grew up in Bloomfield Hills, Mich. He and his wife, El’Freda Geane Cole Agboka (2000 BACH MCOM), have three children. What did Agboka get from LSU in addition to an education and a degree? He replied by email. “I received an experience of a lifetime, confidence for life, great friendships, visionary thinking, perspective, the understanding and execution of true teamwork, passion to pursue my goals, and the personal discipline required to succeed.”

A GREAT “GEAUX-TO” GIFT FOR THE HOLIDAYS! All profits made by LSU alum’s Mach Flynt, Inc. from Geaux Vineyards sales will be donated to the LSU Alumni Association


The Cook Hotel, Bet R, Calandro’s, Bergeron’s City Market, City Pork, Discount Cigarette & Beverage, Drakes Catering, Hi Nabor, LSU Faculty Club, Oak Point Fresh Market, Robert Fresh Market, T&T Lounge, Harvest Supermarket, Hampton Inn & Suites, Martin Wine Cellar, Matherne’s Supermarket, Pay-Less Supermarket, Theatre Baton Rouge, Tiger Den Suites, TimeOut Lounge, Tramonte's Meat and Seafood, Tureau’s Grocery, Unique Cuisine Catering



1901 Restaurant & Wine Bar, City Market & Deli, Crave Gourmet Basket & Gifts, Lake Street Liquor, The Pioneer Club, The Wine Store


The Cellar Fine Wine & Spirits, Kroger, Tony’s Discount Beverages, Wine Country Bistro and Bottle Shop,East Ridge Country Club, Petroleum Club

NORTH LOUISIANA Bud’s Mini Mart, Rayville U-Pak-It


The Boot Bar and Grill, Martin Wine Cellar


Champagne’s Grocery & Deli, Crawfish Town USA, The Kitchenary, Bi-Lo Supermarket - New Iberia


Distributed by Republic National Distributing Company

LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016



Tiger Nation

Ross Romero: Priest, Scholar, Teacher By Ed Cullen

Father M. Ross Romero.

“Liberal arts and humanities studies give people an inner life.”

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His parents and LSU gave Father M. Ross Romero (1997 MAST H&SS), an assistant professor of philosophy at Creighton University, what he needed to become a Jesuit priest, scholar, and teacher. Romero, Ross to his friends, graduated from Hammond High School in 1986, the son of a Catholic father and Presbyterian mother, both deceased. Sidney Romero (1953 PHD H&SS), of St. Mary Parish, met Virginia Butler (1949 SW CERT), of Ouachita Parish, at LSU. Sidney taught history and became vice president of academic affairs at Southeastern Louisiana University (SLU) in Hammond, La. Virginia, a social worker, high school teacher, and instructor at SLU, wrote The Louisiana Strawberry Story. “From my dad, I got a love of the church; from my mom, the love of the Bible and scripture. The Department of Philosophy at LSU provided me an excellent community within which I could pursue the intellectual life,” Romero said. At Christ the King Chapel, he continued, “I was given a chance to discern my vocation to the priesthood,” adding that Fathers Pat Mascarella and the late Than Ngoc Vu, as well as Sister Ileana Fernandez influenced him greatly. “The professors with whom I was able to study, especially Drs. Gregory Schufreider and Mary Sirridge, philosophy and religious studies, and John Pizer, foreign languages and literature, were excellent scholars and willingly engaged in the life of the mind. At the same time, as a teaching assistant to Dr. John Baker, I was able to learn the skill and craft of teaching philosophy,” he said. Romero, forty-seven, came to LSU in 1992 to work on a master’s degree in philosophy after receiving a bachelor’s degree in philosophy at Loyola University in New Orleans. Ordained a Jesuit priest in 2005, Romero earned his doctorate at Boston College in 2010 before joining the faculty at Creighton in Omaha, Neb. Founded by the Society of Jesus in 1878, the now-coeducational university has about 8,200 students on a 132-acre campus near the city’s business district. “Creighton is named for Edward and John Creighton, both devout Catholics who outfitted wagons heading west,” Romero said. Romero is the author of Without the Least Tremor (SUNY Press, May 2016). In the book, Romero considers the death of Socrates as a sacrificial act, a gift to his followers, rather than an execution or suicide. Socrates was tried on charges of impiety and corrupting the youth of Athens in 399 BCE. The charges were the result of his failing to acknowledge Athenian gods and introducing new ones. He died by drinking hemlock. “The way I’d put it,” Romero said, “is that [Socrates’ death] shows us that philosophy is worth living and dying for.” Socrates was offered the chance to escape. Instead, he chose to drink the poison. But he took all day to do it. “As sacrifice, he spends his whole [last] day talking philosophy,” Romero said. “He could have ended his life quickly.” “Liberal arts and humanities studies give people an inner life,” the scholar said. “You want to live in the face of hardship. You don’t want to commit suicide, to check out.”





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Tiger Nation

Lucien Flournoy: A Tiger in Texas Oil By John Flores Photos 1938 Gumbo

Lucien Flournoy.

“I can think of no one that is wiser in business and in politics than Lucien Flournoy. His name is legendary.”

North Louisiana farm boy Lucien Flournoy left home in September 1936 for the first time after high school graduation and reluctantly boarded a Teche Greyhound headed from Shreveport to Baton Rouge. He was seventeen, a freshman, and paid the $3.50 fare for that long trip across the state. His widowed mother, Lillie May, was determined that her only son would get an education. Thanks to Huey Long and his legislature, poor boys like Lucien could attend state colleges tuition-free. One of his three roommates would be a kid named Young Bussey (1940 BACH ENGR), the star LSU football player, personally recruited to play for LSU by U.S. Senator Huey Long. They met in the Stadium Dorm room that hot evening. “We shook hands, and he had a grip, too. But I worked a dairy, milking cows, so we tried to out-grip each other,” Flournoy said. They later arm-wrestled over a bottle of whiskey. Lucien Flournoy (attended 19361939) was about six feet tall and stocky, muscular from the work as assistant to his mother on their 240-acre farm near Greenwood in Caddo Parish. “Also, when I arrived and started to put my clothes in the closet, I noted that Bussey’s wardrobe

80 LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016

took up almost all the space in there,” Flournoy said, in a 2002 interview. “I asked him about it, and he told me. Huey Long, after he became a U.S. senator, had his eye on Bussey – he was in all the Houston newspapers for his football abilities and was sought after nationally – and so he went to one of the games and saw for himself. After the game he gave Bussey a ride home and met his mother and family, and offered him a scholarship on the spot,” Flournoy laughed. “Long asked Bussey what it would really take besides a full ride. Bussey said to me, he told Senator Long that he’d read Clark Gable has one hundred suits, so if he could get one hundred and one suits, that would do it. They shook on it,” Flournoy said, grinning. Bussey later got into a heated argument with Coach Bernie Moore and was expelled from the team, and the school. Governor Leche heard about it and called Bussey’s mother. He sent a car for her and she came to his office with her boy and met Coach Moore. She promised her boy would obey him from that time on, or else. Open heart surgery pioneer Denton Cooley, M.D., founder of the Texas Heart Institute, was a classmate with Bussey at San Jacinto. He wrote the foreword for a 1993 biography about Bussey. “I remember him swaggering gracefully down the corridors in his gold football jersey, which he cut off at the shoulders to reveal his enormous biceps and forearms,” Cooley wrote. “This formidable and intimidating appearance kept less self-assured and shy students like me from confronting him directly. Although I was an above-average athlete, and at six feet three inches, could have helped `Young’s Basketball Team,’ I would not and did not join the team until Young graduated … I feared the man …” Bussey graduated in May 1940 and was immediately signed by George Halas of the Chicago Bears and played well during the team’s championship 1941 season. When Pearl Harbor was bombed, he joined the Navy and died in a Japanese

attack on his small boat in the Philippines. Flournoy, a petroleum engineering major, ran out of money his third year at LSU and took a roughneck job in South Louisiana. He would join the Army during World War II but was injured during pilot training. After discharge he landed in Alice, Texas, and developed a new type of rig that cut drilling time from weeks to days, so that made him very popular. And it made him a fortune. He was worth $100 million or more when he died at eighty-three, in March 2003 due to heart trouble. From the 1950s to his death, Flournoy was a powerful political force in Texas and nationally. He helped Jimmy Carter win Texas in the fall 1976 election, and Carter still remembers. So did Ann Richards, when she won the 1990 governor’s race. “He has a heart as big as Texas and the generosity to make a real impact on the well-being of the people of South Texas. I can think of no one that is wiser in business and in politics than Lucien Flournoy. His name is legendary

Young Bussey.

and for good reason. He loves his fellow man and his community and has done everything he knows to do to improve the lot of both,” Gov. Richards wrote in a 2002 letter. John Flores, a writer in Albuquerque, N.M., is working on a biography about Lucien Flournoy.


LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016


Tigers Around the World

Tiger Nation

LSU alumnae at the 2016 Delta Gamma convention.

DGs in Orlando – “LSU was well-represented at the biannual convention of Delta Gamma held this summer in Orlando, Fla.,” writes Jeanette Mladenka (1977 BACH MCOM). “ With more 900 women in attendance, LSU had nearly thirty alumnae and collegiate members who serve in leadership positions across the country gather to sharpen their management skills, address campus and community issues, and celebrate their monumental achievements. LSU's Gamma Zeta chapter of Delta Gamma once again was nominated for national Chapter of the Year, and the Baton Rouge Alumnae Chapter won its division for Outstanding Chapter of the Year.

Thinking Big – Being photographed by the Shaquille O’Neal statue outside the Practice Facility on the first day of LSU Basketball Camp was a high point of the summer for six-year-old Jeremiah Owens, writes the future Tiger’s grandmother, Rachel Emanuel (1977 BACH MCOM, 1990 MAST MCOM). The Cub camper thought it was “amazing” to see Shaq dunking, and the small forward hopeful says he “loves dunking.” “The camp was fun and taught me dribbling skills,” Jeremiah said. “I also met good guys, like teammates Malachi, Harrison, and Brooks (not Aaron Brooks),” he laughed. However, nothing beat the thrill of making a “nothing but net” basket on the first try in front of Coach Johnny Jones on the last day of the camp. “That’s the way to go out, Jeremiah,” Jones said. Future Tiger – There’s no doubt that three-year-old Oliver Roy Malla – wearing an LSU jersey and clutching toy Tiger mascots – is headed for LSU, if Geauxpa Daniel M. Downey (1980 PHD SCI) and Geauxma Carole have anything to say about it.

Jeremiah Owens.

Oliver Roy Malla.

82 LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016

The Perfect Combination LSU mom Terrie Maki shares a throwback Tiger-Badger photo taken at the 2014 LSU vs. Wisconsin game. Terrie, a 1984 Wisconsin graduate, made special T-shirts to let people know the Makis are a “mixed family.” Daughter Kirsten Maki is a senior at LSU, pursuing a degree in chemical engineering. “Each of us wore an appropriate version of the T-shirt,” writes Terrie. “I wore Wisconsin ALUM, LSU MOM. Her father’s read WISCONSIN FAN, LSU DAD, and her grandfather, uncle, and cousin wore shirts with their appropriate relationship to her. The back of each shirt read THE PERFECT COMBINATION.” “Kirsten grew up singing all the Wisconsin fight songs, but she wanted to go to college out of state,” Terrie continues. “When she told me she wanted to go to the Southeast part of the country, I stated, ‘Well then you have to go to LSU.’ Never did Alabama cross my mind.” According to Terrie, the good thing about attending an SEC school was there would never be a football, basketball, or hockey match with Wisconsin. Of course, that changed when games were planned between the two schools. “So, guess which is our #1 team now?” she wrote. “We couldn't be happier with LSU and our new Louisiana family.”

The Maki clan sports ‘mixed family’ tees at the 2014 LSU vs. Wisconsin game.

LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016


Tigers Around the World

Tiger Nation

Trekking Kilimanjaro – Taylor Mendel (2010 BACH AGR) proudly displays her LSU flag at Gilman’s Point on Mount Kilimanjaro. Mendel, a Kappa Kappa Gamma alum, is employed by Anadarko and lives in Denver.

Taylor Mendel on Mount Kilimanjaro.

Pumpkin Fest – Danielle Gueho and son Grant carved an LSU pumpkin to add to the hundreds of pumpkins at the Great Highwood Pumpkin Fest in Highwood, Ill., in October. The annual event partners with Make-A-Wish Illinois to turn pumpkins in wishes. Organizers were trying to break the world record of most pumpkins lit at one and grant 100 wishes for Illinois children with life-threatening medical conditions. Remembering Mike – Forensic Grant Gueho.

artist Jonny Castro, of Philadelphia, Pa., writes, “I received a message from a photographer down in Louisiana asking me if I would paint a portrait of LSU's mascots. She was able to photograph Mike's last day in public and sent me photos to use as reference. At the time, I was busy trying to get the paintings finished of the officers killed [during the summer]. By the time I saw the message, Mike had passed away. The people down in Louisiana, especially Baton Rouge, have been extremely supportive with my page and my artwork of the fallen officers, so I decided to do this portrait for free. I will be shipping prints down to LSU for the staff that cared for him for the last nine years.

WHAT’S YOUR VOLUNTEER PASSION? Send a photo of yourself “in action” and tell Tigers Around the World how and why you share your time and talents with others.

84 LSU Alumni Magazine | Winter 2016

Periodicals POSTAGE PAID Postal Permit USPS 14120 Louisiana State University and A&M College 3838 West Lakeshore Drive, Baton Rouge, LA 70808

Winter 2016, Volume 92, Number 4  

LSU’s Faculty-In-Residence (FIR) program lets professors and their families live on campus and interact with students outside the classroom...

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