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BUSINESS JOURNAL FOR NWLA MAY 2020

POST-COVID19 BUSINESS

What will reopening look like? Feature | P. 5

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OPINION DR. PHILLIP ROZEMAN q

Reasonable expectations moving ahead DAVID SPECHT DSPECHT@BIZMAGSB.COM

BIZ. TEAM Editor & Publisher David Specht dspecht@bizmagsb.com Chief Financial Officer Kelly May Account Representatives Randy Brown Chris Sepeda Production Louis Mitchell Special Contributors Dr. Les Guice, Lisa Johnson, David Rockett Liz Swaine Dr. Rick Bateman Dr. Earl Meador Contact Website: bizmagsb.com Phone: 318-747-7900 Address: 6346 Venecia Dr. Bossier City, LA 71111 Social Media: Follow @bizmagsb on Twitter, Facebook, & LinkedIn Subscribe Online:$48 Print: $24 Combo: $36 Sign up: bizmagsb.com subscribe/ *Chamber members get 1 free subscription Daily Report Sign up for free at bizmagsb.com/dailyreport/ Related Links Bossier Progress: bossierprogress.com Bossier Press-Tribune: bossierpress.com

Over the last few weeks, we have watched the global pandemic and economic recession unfold on our television and computer screens. The ROZEMAN phrase “flattening the curve” has become a part of most people’s vocabulary and tragic videos from hospitals and emergency rooms in New York City and Northern Italy are on all channels. Prentiss Smith wrote in the Times, “People are afraid. People are anxious.” Those emotions are amplified by uncertainty about expectations. So what can we realistically expect over the next couple of months? First, we can expect health systems will continue to provide relief to patients suffering from the complications of the COVID-19 virus. Leaders from Governor Edwards down to health system leaders will continue to spend their time thinking ahead – anticipating problems and developing solutions. Local physicians will continue to modify treatment protocols based on the best thinking of experienced people across the globe. Pharmaceuticals and clinical research will continue to develop new treatments, testing, and vaccines for COVID-19. We can expect to continue to put into practice some form of social distancing until an effective vaccine has been developed and people inoculated. These efforts are relatively easy and have been effective in reducing transmission of this and many other viruses. Social distancing has been effective in flattening the curve of the virus in our community. Public Service Announcement We can expect different prevalences of COVID-19 in different regions of the country and significant differences in the number of cases in different neighborhoods within

the same community. As a result, restart efforts will be done at different rates in different communities. The COVID-19 virus will not magically disappear and be replaced by a roaring economy by the end of May. Victory over COVID-19 will come with a curative treatment, vaccine, or widespread immunity in the community. We can expect a substantial reduction of complications of the virus if we concentrate significant efforts on reducing the spread of the virus in elderly people with chronic disease and people in high risk areas of our community. Aggressively managing high risk subsets (like done in nursing homes and the Caddo Parish Commission testing van to high risk neighborhoods) not only reduces risk in that subset but speeds the safe reopening of the economy and lowers the incidence of a second wave of COVID-19. We can expect schools will open this fall. Children have a very very low risk of complications of the virus. We need to be ready with whatever resources to mitigate the transmission of the virus between children and elderly relatives and friends. We can expect the development of benchmark health criteria to guide local decision-making in dealing with the health and economic crisis. These benchmark guidelines (new cases, hospitalizations, ventilators) are vital to judge the speed of modifying stay at home, business opening, and social distancing policies. We can expect loosening social distancing strategies might result in some rebound of the virus. Flattening the curve does not mean the curve goes away. The key in each community is maintaining these rebounds as small blips and not a significant wave that swamps the health systems. It is the reason for continued monitoring, continued social distancing efforts, and continued willingness to be flexible

Copyright © 2020 by Specht Newspapers Inc. All rights reserved. Information in this publication is gathered from sources considered to be reliable, but the accuracy and completeness of the information cannot be guaranteed. BIZ. Magazine is located at 6346 Venecia Dr., Bossier City, LA 71111.

and modify course as the future unfolds. We can expect tension between efforts to control the illness and restart our economy. This tension between two very important issues is predictable and handling that tension will require leaders to acknowledge that personal perspectives are different. This difference in perspective may be based on everything from individual tolerance of risk to individual personal experience with the pandemic, health risk, and economic situation. As noted by Louisiana Senator John Kennedy, we “need to save both lives and livelihoods”. We must do both. We can expect widespread testing to be a focus in reopening the economy. Health officials and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce are calling for expanding testing. However, there is significant doubt this robust and widespread testing strategy can be delivered as envisioned. At this time, there are just not near enough tests for everyone to have ongoing testing. In addition, there are warnings from scientists over what tests are accurate as well as questions about the degree of immunity conveyed by antibodies. For now, we need to develop a plan that does not depend too heavily on testing everyone. We will implement the plan and monitor progress and add new testing provisions as they are developed. We can expect there will be no silver bullet solutions for reopening the economy. Ripping off the band-aid is not the best approach. A graduated approach better serves our community. We can expect businesses, Chambers of Commerce, local government, faith-based and nonprofit leaders to have a big hand in implementing restart efforts. Along the way, consideration will be given to long-term re-imagining efforts in our state and community. Could See, ROZEMAN, Page 11

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NEWS

Gov. Edwards extends stay at home order till May 15 BY DAVID JACOBS The Center Square

Gov. John Bel Edwards announced April 27 he will extend Louisiana’s “stay at home” order with some changes until May 15 in hopes of slowing the spread of the new coronavirus that causes COVID-19. Louisiana does not currently meet the White House criteria for entering phase one of reopening currently limited sectors of the economy, he said. While Louisiana has seen improving trends statewide in terms of new case growth and new hospitalizations in several regions across the state, new cases and hospitalizations continue to increase or to plateau, according to data from the Louisiana Department of Health. The White House criteria calls for declining numbers of new cases and hospitalizations, among other factors, to lift restrictions. Public Service Announcement “Thanks to the commitment of the people of Louisiana, our state has made progress in flattening the curve and reducing the spread

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of the novel coronavirus. Unfortunately, we still have a little work to do before we meet the criteria to safely move to the next phase of reopening, so I will extend the state’s Stay at Home order until May 15, with a few minor changes,” Edwards said. “While this is not the announcement I want to make, I am hopeful, and all of Louisiana should be hopeful, that we will enter into the next phase of reopening soon, in mid-May. I am anxious to get all areas of our economy reopened, but if we accelerate too quickly, we may have to slam on the brakes. That will be bad for public health and for businesses, bad for our people and bad for our state.” Edwards said his decision is based on regional data that shows that while overall new cases and hospitalizations have decreased, this is not the case in several regions. In the greater Baton Rouge and Monroe regions, both new cases and new hospitalizations have increased. Some increases of new cases have been seen in Acadiana and a plateau for hospitalizations in southwest Louisiana and a

plateau of new cases on the Northshore near New Orleans, Edwards said. Under the extended order, which will be issued on Friday, businesses that previously were directed to be closed will remain closed, including salons, barber shops, bars and casinos, among others. Businesses that are deemed essential under the third phase of federal guidance may still be open. Non-essential retail businesses in Louisiana continue to be able to open with fewer than 10 people total inside. Three changes in the new order include: Malls will remain closed to the public, but stores may open for curbside delivery. Restaurants will be allowed to open their outside areas for patrons to eat meals only, without tableside service. All employees of a business who have contact with the public must wear a mask. Both the CDC and the Louisiana Department of Health “strongly urge everyone to wear masks when in public,” Edwards’ office said. “Hopefully, Louisiana will meet

the White House criteria and move to Phase 1 on May 15, provided symptoms, new case counts and hospitalizations decrease and the state continues to surge testing and contact tracing capacity.” In phase one, the “stay at home” order would be lifted and restrictions on some public spaces like houses of worship and restaurants and businesses that have been closed such as barber shops and salons would be allowed to reopen with restrictions on occupancy and strict requirements for personal distancing and masks to keep everyone safe. Occupancy for such businesses would be limited to 25 percent. “Hundreds of thousands of Louisiana families continue to suffer each day we delay reopening the state’s economy,” said Daniel Erspamer, CEO of the fiscally conservative Pelican Institute for Public Policy. “It’s past time to get Louisiana working, and we strongly urge the Governor and all of our elected officials to treat the worsening jobs and economic crisis with the same urgency as the ongoing COVID-19 health crisis.”


FEATURE

What will reopening the economy look like? Chambers of commerce offer help, information to local businesses

D

espite Gov. John Bel Edwards’ extension of a stay at home order until May 15, businesses throughout the area are preparing to reopen. Shreveport-Bossier got a preview last month of a post-coronavirus business world with guidance on how to navigate the uncertainty that follows it. The weekly webinar hosted by the Greater Shreveport, Bossier, and Shreveport-Bossier African American Chambers of Commerce focused on the future as plans are starting to form to reopen businesses following the COVID-19 pandemic shut down. The inspiration, or even optimism, to look ahead was driven by President Donald Trump’s road map to reopening the national economy he unveiled in mid-April. The plan is founded upon a three-phase approach to restoring normal activity in places that have strong testing capabilities and a trend of decreasing COVID-19 cases. In phase one, the plan recommends strict social distancing for all people in public, gatherings larger than 10 people are to be avoided, and nonessential travel is discouraged. In phase two, people are encouraged to maximize social distancing, limit gatherings to no more than 50 people, and travel could resume. Phase three envisions a return to normalcy for most Americans, with a focus on identification and isolation of any new infections. Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards responded by creating a task force to help state officials decide when and how to reopen sectors of the economy currently limited or shut down. Mark Cooper, Gov. Edwards’ chief of staff, was on the chambers’ call to give insight to the governor’s plan. He explained that Edwards’ goal is to be at Phase I by April 30, but the state may even be able to do some progressive things before that time. He noted that Edwards is talking to the Louisiana Department of Health and planning what to do in regard to allowing elective surgeries and opening dental offices.

Beauty and cosmetology salons As of April 23, Louisiana had and gyms would also open back up 26,000 reported cases of COVID-19 under Phase I, pending adherence and 1,540 deaths. In Shreveto guidelines of how they handle port-Bossier there were approxicustomers and wearing of facial mately 1,400 cases. masks and gloves. Cooper gave credit to the local “Nobody wants to open things area, citing Bossier as a “leader in up more than the governor. But this the state” with adherence to Edis not turning on a light switch, it’s wards’ Stay-At-Home Order. a dimmer,” Cooper said metaphor“We are seeing the state doing ically. better at reducing the number He also offered the encouraging of cases and that is due to what’s information that more businesses going on with your corner of the are currently able to operate than state,” Cooper said. “they might realize.” The conference call also featured “I think a lot of businesses would a broader view of the future of a be surprised to learn that they can post-corona business climate with be open. They just have to follow a presentation from Jack Howard, the senior guidevice Nobody wants to open lines presithings up more than the that are dent of estabcongresgovernor. But this is not lished,” sional turning on a light switch, Cooper and said. public it’s a dimmer. On an affairs at April 24 the U.S. teleconChamber MARK COOPER ference, of ComGOV. EDWARDS’ CHIEF OF STAFF U.S. Repmerce. resenHowtative Mike Johnson (LA-04) noted ard discussed the national converthat he believes “lives and livelisation regarding the what, when, hoods” can both be protected and and how of reopening the coundoing so “isn’t mutually exclusive.” try’s economy. He explained that “We can reopen our economy the U.S. Chamber has started the and do so with wisdom,” he said. conversation with their member He went on to note that the procompanies to plan now so employcess should be on a parish-by-parers can reopen as safely and quickish basis. ly as possible. “The same rules for New Orleans “We’ve found it’s going to require are not going to apply to Bossier constant social distancing and the Parish,” Johnson added. use of personal protective equip-

ment for employees,” Howard said. His chamber engaged the White House with a focus on defining essential services, regulatory and liability issues, and ongoing support needs for people and businesses. “We were very involved with helping them develop that broad plan for reopening,” Howard revealed. “A lot of what was incorporated was based on our discussions with state and local government.” Those discussions established a set of criteria that must be satisfied before any effort can be made to reopen a state’s economy. Primarily, a downward trajectory of virus symptoms, documented cases, and positive tests in a 14-day period; hospitals must be able to treat patients without crisis care; and businesses are implementing robust testing programs for at-risk workers. “All of that is going to require robust testing and monitoring to be in place. In order to put all that in place, it’s going to take a minimum of six weeks or longer,” said Howard. This means, he added, that states have safe and efficient screening sites, tracing of symptoms, and ongoing surveillance sites for asymptomatic cases; healthcare capacity; access to critical medical equipment to handle surges; and regulations regarding social distancing and facial coverings. “From our viewpoint, the following things are going to have to happen at the state level: broadbased testing, surveillance and tracing systems, adequate supply of PPE, and clear social distancing guidelines,” Howard said. He also noted that the Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program had run out of money by mid-April, however the following week, a further $250 billion for the program was injected by a bill from Washington. Dana Cawthon, Louisiana Small Business Development Center regional director, tagged on to Howard’s comments to note that more than 17,000 Louisiana businesses have benefited from the program. “We have a 14-parish service area and I hear desperation, fear, and panic,” she said. “I encourage our small businesses to begin to think about what your business’ environment looks like with social distancing and the threat of the coronavirus lingering.” —BIZ MAGAZINE

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Economic agencies BOSSIER CHAMBER OF COMMERCE q

We still have much to be #thankful for

BIZ. BITS q Ochsner LSU Health Shreveport moves Obstetric and Pediatric Patients to its St. Mary Medical Center Last month, Ochsner LSU Health Shreveport announced plans to move its Women’s & Children’s inpatient services, currently located on Kings Highway, to its St. Mary Medical Center at 915 Margaret Place, in order to create space for its ICU expansion of more than 100 additional beds. The new Women’s & Children’s location will be complete tomorrow when Ochsner LSU Health moves approximately 45 patients to its new hospital. Working with Balentine Ambulance, the Shreveport Police Department, Louisiana State Troopers and the Shreveport Fire Department, the move will take place early Monday morning through the afternoon. The ICU expansion project follows guidance of state public officials to improve surge capacity for COVID-19 patients. By modifying its St. Mary Medical Center to accommodate inpatient pediatric, labor and delivery, Neonatal ICU and Pediatric ICU patients, space was created to expand the adult intensive care capacity at its hospital on Kings Highway, where the health system has a comprehensive team of intensive care and critical care specialists. It is also a critical step in re-opening Northwest Louisiana, as the White House Guidelines for Re-opening the Economy specify the “ability to surge ICU capacity.”

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While there has been much uncertainty in our lives as we have changed our routines to combat the COVID-19 outJOHNSON break, you have actually had a whole community supporting you during this unsettling time. That community was your business community. They’ve always been there to provide the products and services you needed and they didn’t leave when the crisis came. Some have temporarily closed their doors to stay-at-home right along with you and others have been going steady to provide you with what you need, and some sense of normalcy during the past month and a half. There is no better way to show your appreciation than to say thank you to the businesses who have been there for you along the way. WE CHALLENGE YOU to thank them in person, leave them a glowing review on Facebook or Google, or make an entire post dedicated to their service using the hashtags below. #ThankaGroceryStore: When you needed to stock your pantry to make sure you could stay home as much as possible, these stores not only provided as much as they could, they stood on the front lines of this virus and offered to bring your groceries straight to your car. And, working around the clock to keep as much food on the shelves as possible, they also hired MORE PEOPLE during the pandemic, filling another need for many families. #ThankaRestaurant: When you were looking for some comfort from your favorite dishes or just got tired of cooking and doing dishes, your favorite restaurants were there for you. This industry may have endured some of the largest changes, going from normalcy to offering

takeout and curbside to absolutely no inside dining in the blink of an eye. But as often as they could, these restaurants worked hard to stay open to provide you with a good meal and keep their employees on the payroll. #ThankaBanker: Many businesses have been upended by this virus – in the way they normally conduct business and in their bottom line. The legislation passed to help aid businesses was passed as quickly as this virus began to spread, and that meant there were challenges in getting funding. But

But don’t just think of the doctors and nurses, anyone who works in a hospital or cares for you at a clinic – from the lab workers to the front desk – is working to keep you safe and as healthy as possible. Let’s not forget the ENTIRE TEAM of HEALTHCARE PROFESSIONALS in our community and be especially thankful for the scope of this industry in our community. And there are so many more people to thank: #ThankaMailCarrier, #ThankaSanitationWorker, #ThankaDeliveryDriver (for all of that online shopping you are doing), #ThankaRetailStore for offering online payments and curbside pickup, #ThankYourSchool and everyone who works there for trying to provide education to students in any capacity they can. I think the moral of the story is to remember to be appreciative of everyone who is continuing to work to provide for this community. #ThankYourChamber: We don’t often seek accolades or public kudos, but during this time, we ALSO have been working around the clock for our business community, which trickles down to every individual. We have worked to provide the most accurate and helpful information to EVERY BUSINESS, regardless of their membership status, during this difficult time we are navigating together. Every time you continue to pay your dues, read our enewsletters, click like on our social media posts, or call-in to our weekly Chamber Chat or Joint Chamber Webinar, you have shown us that even though you are busy taking care of your business, you understand that supporting us and the larger business community is important to you, and to our future. And we say THANK YOU for all of your support of the Bossier Chamber during this time, too. We truly are #BetterTogether.

There is no better way to show your appreciation than to say thank you to the businesses who have been there for you along the way. when your business needed help navigating this crisis financially, our banks stood up and took on the challenge of administering the Paycheck Protection Program loans as quickly and efficiently as possible to save jobs in our community. In fact, 60 percent of the loans approved through Phase One of the PPP were made by community banks. #ThankanInsuranceAgent: Business ownership can be full of bills to be paid, but as many of you sought relief for your business – and your individual bank accounts – the insurance industry recognized this need and most offered discounts. No matter how small the discount, any relief in monthly bill payments is making a huge impact during a time of such uncertainty. #ThankaHealthcareProfessional: This one has been the most obvious of the thank yous to send out within our community as we have seen time and again that our healthcare professionals are the ones fighting this virus head-on.

LISA JOHNSON | PRESIDENT & CEO OF THE BOSSIER CHAMBER OF COMMERCE.


ECONOMIC AGENCIES NLEP q

Louisiana: Open for business After the unprecedented shut-down of Louisiana’s economy necessitated by the COVID-19 pandemic, our state is ready to get back to work. Governor John MARTINEZ Bel Edwards is committed to reopening parts of the economy, sector by sector in a safe manner. His Resilient Louisiana Commission and the Louisiana Legislative Advisory Task Force on Economic Recovery have been created to develop policies to guide our State’s phased-reopening. As the President of North Louisiana Economic Partnership (NLEP), I serve on both advisory task forces to ensure North Louisiana and our business community have a voice in this critical process. The Resilient Louisiana Commission is organized in a task force structure with 15 sector specific task forces dedicated to strengthening individual sectors of Louisiana’s economy. I will

be co-chairing the Economic & Community Development Task Force with my friend Michael Hecht of Greater New Orleans, Inc. The other task forces will be developing recommendations for the following business sectors: health care & human services; information technology & communications; financial services; transportation & infrastructure; energy; manufacturing; hospitality & tourism; rural development; education and workforce; construction; gaming; small business & retail; food & agriculture; and restaurants & entertainment. Similarly, representatives from a wide range of business sectors serve on the Legislature’s Advisory Task Force on Economic Recovery, including oil and gas, agriculture, manufacturing, automotive, banking, hospitality, food and beverage, trucking, construction, and medical. Their industry-specific expertise will be invaluable in developing recommendations on how to reopen the economy safety. As a starting point for discussions that will be held in the coming weeks, NLEP has joined other economic development

organizations and chambers of commerce to develop a preliminary framework on how to restart our economy. This framework is based on conversations with groups of business leaders and an array of business associations and groups around Louisiana. There is broad support for social distancing to remain part of any type of reopening plan. This framework also calls for transparent public health benchmarks, beginning with having enough hospital capacity to treat patients, ensuring we have enough COVID-19 testing capacity, developing work safety and hygiene protocols and keeping in place precautions for high-risk populations. Throughout the COVID-19 crisis, NLEP has been monitoring our employers’ critical needs in a series of business surveys. Overwhelmingly, our businesses have been asking for public assistance in procuring personal protection equipment, particularly masks, sanitizer, disinfectant, and temperature scanners. Childcare is another big concern. With schools and many daycares closed for now,

any plan to reopen our economy must include solutions for childcare. The State needs to provide official guidance for safe daycare and summer school or camps. Additionally, we need to consider legal protections from the State for employers that follow official guidance for safety protocols, such as those specified by OSHA, CDC, and federal and state authorities. The Governor has already lifted restrictions on non-emergency medical procedures and acknowledges that the healthcare sector will be the first industry to fully reopen. The next wave of business openings should be based on science and not hysteria. I believe public health and safely restarting the Louisiana economy are not mutually exclusive propositions. I look forward to working with both groups in developing a safe path to safely reopen the Louisiana economy. SCOTT MARTINEZ | PRESIDENT OF THE NORTH LOUISIANA ECONOMIC PARTNERSHIP

We see extraordinary courage. We see a culture of resilience. We’ll make it through the tough times, we always do. And Blue Cross will always be here to support you. 01MK7309 04/20

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ECONOMIC AGENCIES NLEP q

Going back to work may mean a new career Many workers in North Louisiana are struggling because of the uncertainty of not knowing if, or when, their jobs will return. But they WHITE should be given some measure of hope in knowing that once the phased reopening of our state economy begins, a solid team of workforce and economic development partners is preparing to help them if their job is not restored immediately (or at all). Based on surveys conducted by the North Louisiana Economic Partnership, many employers have indicated they expect to have the same jobs in place when Louisiana’s stay-at-home mandates are lifted. But some jobs will be lost because the businesses themselves may not be able to survive the pandemic-induced shutdown. Still other workers may have to wait until all phases of the recommended federal plan to reopen the economy are implemented and operations stabilize. The point being, there may be thousands of North Louisiana

residents who will not be able to return to their jobs following the pandemic, at least not for the foreseeable future. Unemployment insurance may be able to sustain some of these residents until they are back to work. But this may be an opportunity for others to make a career change. This crisis may present them with an opportunity to receive training that in all likelihood will be paid for partially or fully by government (state and/or federal). From March 21 to April 11, there were 85,736 initial unemployment insurance claims from Louisiana residents in the Accommodation & Food Service industry, according to the Louisiana Workforce Commission. Using a real-time data tool called EMSI, NLEP ran analysis of this industry throughout North Louisiana (which included casinos), and the occupation with the highest number of jobs is waiter/ waitress. Next, we ran a report showing the skills transferability of this occupation compared with other occupations (meaning there is skills compatibility between the two), and further refined it by looking at healthcare occupations that have a high de-

gree of skills transferability with waiter/waitress. We then further refined the results to home in on occupations that have shown increased demand in North Louisiana over the last three years, and among those which ones have a median wage of at least $12.50 per hour ($25,000 annual). The four occupations with the highest compatibility index that meet these criteria are Dental Assistant, Phlebotomist, Medical Assistant, Physical Therapy Assistant and Medical Transcriptionist (to learn about these jobs visit www.onetonline.org/find). There are programs that train for all of these occupations, ranging in depth from Certificate to Associate degrees, at one or more of the community and technical colleges and continuing education departments at certain four-year universities in North Louisiana: Southern University at Shreveport, Northwest Louisiana Technical Community College, Bossier Parish Community College, Ayers Career College, Louisiana Delta Community College, LSUS and University of Louisiana at Monroe. Over the past two years and with coordination and support

from the NLEP, 12 North Louisiana parishes went through training to become certified ACT Work Ready Communities and during this process they formed a consortium called North Louisiana Ready2Work. This consortium is comprised of professionals from K-12 and higher education, workforce and economic development, chambers and local government. This group meets regularly and is highly collaborative in creating programs and funding to get residents into training for high-demand, good paying jobs. The COVID-19 crisis has only strengthened North Louisiana Ready2Work’s commitment to close the skills gap in our local and regional economy. This group will be here to serve our residents in need by connecting them to jobs and training for new careers when Louisiana reopens its economy. To learn more about North Louisiana Ready2Work and the participating organizations, visit www.northlouisianaready2work.org. ANGIE WHITE | EXECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENT AND WORKFORCE INITIATIVES DIRECTOR AT THE NORTH LOUISIANA ECONOMIC PARTNERSHIP.

Workplace safety in the reopened economy With cases of COVID-19 on the decline in the United States, federal, state, and local governments have begun to ease the various restrictions currently WHETSTONE in place, with an eye to reopening the economy. Business owners must prepare for this reopening and understand that the COVID-19 pandemic, and its effects, have not disappeared. The threat of a resurgence of COVID-19 remains a stark possibility, and everyone, including business owners and their workers, must do their part to prevent that possible resurgence. In order to help business owners acclimate to this new reality, the Occupational

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Safety and Health Administration has provided non-binding guidance on how business owners can protect the workers on the job and the customers and clients that come through their doors. Some of the guidance is already quite familiar to most of us. When practicable, keeping at least 6 feet apart from other people is still the go-to rule. Of course, in some workplace settings, this is not always an option. Workers should be encouraged to continue avoiding physical contact with one another and with their customers and clients. Additionally, everyone should continue the practice of covering coughs and sneezes. Not only should workers avoid physical contact with other people, but they should also be encouraged to avoid using other workers’ phones, desks, and equipment. If

workers must share equipment, the best practice is to wipe down the equipment before and after use. Business owners should also ensure that routine cleaning and disinfecting of surfaces continue. Business owners should also promote frequent and thorough hand washing by their workers. Baked into these recommendations is the understanding that it is the business owner who should provide the necessary soap, water, and other cleaners to their workers. Finally, the return to the physical workplaces means that the use of Zoom conference meetings will likely be reduced or completely replaced with in-person meetings. Any in-person meetings should be kept as brief as possible and the number of people at these meetings should be kept as low as possible.

Business owners and their workers are key to preventing the resurgence of COVID-19 and should take this responsibility to heart. As with all things related to workplace culture, this responsibility starts at the top. Business owners should clearly communicate to their workers the importance of taking the necessary precautions. Taking these precautions once the economy is reopened will not only help keep the economy open, but, more importantly, it will help keep people safe. LUKE D. WHETSTONE | ATTORNEY AT COOK, YANCEY, KING & GALLOWAY, A PROFESSIONAL LAW CORPORATION.

This article is for information purposes only and does not constitute legal advice.


Affordable. Transferable. Flexible.

BPCC.edu

Bossier Parish Community College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to award associate degrees, diplomas, and certificates. Contact the Commission on Colleges at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, Georgia 30033-4097 or call 404-679-4500 for questions about the accreditation of Bossier Parish Community College. • Bossier Parish Community College does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, gender, age, religion, qualified disability, marital status, veteran’s status, or sexual orientation in admission to its programs, services, or activities, in access to them, in treatment of individuals, or in any aspect of its operations. Bossier Parish Community College does not discriminate in its hiring or employment practices. • Coordinator for Section 504 and ADA: Angie Cao, Student and Disability Services Specialist - Disability Services, 6220 East Texas Street, Bossier City, LA 71111 - (318) 678-6511 - acao@bpcc.edu - 8:00 a.m.–4:30 p.m. M-F, excluding holidays and weekends. • Equity/Compliance Coordinator: Teri Bashara, Director of Human Resources - Human Resources Office, 6220 East Texas Street, Bossier City, LA 71111 - (318) 678-6056 - 8:00 a.m.–4:30 p.m. M-F, excluding holidays and weekends.

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HIGHER EDUCATION RICK BATEMAN q

Forged in crisis: The making of a better BPCC

The world of higher education is in a state of flux, and a new normal is coming at us like a Jordan Hicks fastball. I am proud of the response BATEMAN Bossier Parish Community College has had to the COVID-19 pandemic. Within a few days of the governor’s social-distancing announcement, BPCC staff put into place a telework infrastructure to support all of our employees and, within a week, our faculty stood up remote learning environments for the entire slate of BPCC courses to serve their students. Now that the curve is flattening, it is time that we firm up plans for how BPCC will look on the other side of the stay-athome order. Now is the time to think through how the new normal can translate into enhanced services to students and to our communities. As my boss is fond of saying, “Don’t pass up on the opportunity of a good crisis.” Much like forged steel—compressed under extreme pressure—colleges like BPCC will emerge from these trying times stronger than ever because we have experience thriving in the face of challenge. To be clear, the disorder and uncertainty generated by COVID-19 will deliver wide-ranging impacts upon higher education, and we are working intently to ensure the safety and well-being of our students and employees—all while re-imagining an organizational culture and structure with antibodies sufficient to end this pandemic and lead our regional economy out of an impending recession. Strategies key to BPCC’s success in the coming months and years include clear, consistent safety and sanitation protocols, curricular offerings responsive to the regional economy, support services far beyond those traditionally offered in higher education, and a high tech/high touch philosophy to better support students,

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advisors, staff, and faculty. Cyber, healthcare, and manufacLike other businesses throughturing will continue to be areas of out America, BPCC is finalizing focus for BPCC, but we also have the very protocols that will allow the ability to very quickly stand us to safely welcome employup short-term workforce training ees and students back to camfor displaced workers. pus. Essential personnel have An economy that struggles to continued to secure, clean, and rebound from the pandemic will maintain the half-million square send more students to be trained feet of space at BPCC. This and retrained in the nation’s team is also working with others community colleges. These stuthroughout the Louisiana Comdents will arrive with needs that munity and Technical College require a whole-of-community System to develop protocols for approach…if those students are cleaning, sanitizing, and disinto be successful. BPCC’s Cavfecting various spaces, surfaces, alier Care Center was created and equipment. Our May-mester to centralize and to serve as a and Summer terms will be declearinghouse for critical support livered services, online—a addressing The impact that COVID-19 is strategy various having on small businesses, which will insecurioil and gas, tourism, and widen a ties that gaming industries all but window of become ensures two inevitabilities: opportubarriers Louisiana’s economy will nity for the to student require time to recover, and curve to compleour State’s support for higher continue tion. Conto move necting education will decline for the southward, students foreseeable future. for our to fundpeople to ing such transition back to the campus, as S.N.A.P., WIC, Medicaid, and and for continued planning and EITC is part of this work. The readiness toward the return of Center also houses a food pantry, our students. the Cavalier Closet, and a laptop The impact that COVID-19 is loan program, along with prohaving on small businesses, oil viding information on affordable and gas, tourism, and gaming housing, childcare, and other industries all but ensures two resources available in our cominevitabilities: Louisiana’s econmunity. With the support of the omy will require time to recover, BPCC Foundation, the Center and our State’s support for higher provides emergency grants to education will decline for the students who are, far too often, foreseeable future. More than one flat tire, one dead car battery, ever, colleges like BPCC will be or one unpaid electric bill away called upon to do more with less, from dropping out. and it will be incumbent upon all Though we anticipate a reducof us in the sector to ensure that tion in state support for higher our programmatic offerings are education, we expect an increase decisively aligned with the needs this fall in the number of citizens of our regional economies. accessing the services BPCC We are expanding and launchprovides. In order to serve these ing new programs that respond students at a world class level, we to job demands in Northwest rely on the investment and inLouisiana. BPCC is providing novation taking place right now. courses and programs online and BPCC is supporting advisors with delivering content that is both investments in predictive analytstacked and aligned to indusics and degree-planning softtry-based credentials which allow ware; they, in turn, are innovating students to move from learning proactive and technology-ento earning as soon as possible. hanced advising strategies.

To support faculty, we are investing in training to teach online and more fully utilize our learning management system. Our faculty are currently innovating approaches in the use of simulation, in distance learning, and in streamlining developmental education. BPCC is investing in technology to bridge the digital divide for students and to drive down costs. We’re achieving both by scaling up open educational resources and by freezing tuition rates for a fifth consecutive year. Our students are responding with record-level retention and completion rates all while gaining national prominence in successful testing for professional licensures. In the last six weeks, the Covid-19 emergency has prompted BPCC to re-envision our role in many new ways—the way that instruction is delivered is only the tip of the spear. We have effectively leveraged high-tech to build a college that functions remotely at a high level; we have worked as one to embrace a “high-touch” philosophy in building closer connections with our students and employees. Despite the physical distance between us, leadership, advising, alongside the entire range of student support services, support staff, and instructors have all become more focused upon a person-to-person, individually-tailored experience. Still, there is a longing for return to our campus, to the camaraderie of our profession, to the invigorating buzz that is unique to an institution of higher learning. The coming months and years will not be easy for higher education. In the meantime, I am confident that BPCC will continue to make safety and security our highest priority while we identify ways to bring something positive out of this crisis and forge systems that benefit of our students and our community. DR. RICK BATEMAN | CHANCELLOR OF BOSSIER PARISH COMMUNITY COLLEGE.


HIGHER EDUCATION LES GUICE q

La. Tech pivots with the changes

Stay-at-home means learn from home

At Louisiana Tech University, we recognize that education and the industry of learning is changing because of the COVID-19 panGUICE demic. Educators and institutions across the country are being challenged to reframe the way we serve students, the way we assess and deliver learning, and the way we conduct general operations. Our classrooms are empty shells that once housed seats full of bright minds, and the halls once bustling with the movement of students are now quiet corridors, but we have not changed our central mission – to improve the lives of others through the transformational power of higher education. We continue to believe that the residential college model, with many opportunities for face-toface interaction in and out of the classroom, for which Tech has been known is expected to be as important as ever for many students. Our work adapting tools and technology this quarter will continue to enhance our face-toface and on-line experiences in the future. The new dynamic of “stay at home” is not unique to colleges; we see changing tides at all levels of education and in all industries. Parents of school-age children are finding new expectations related to their role of rearing their children – at least until schools can return to some semblance of normalcy. Businesses are closing their doors to regular foot traffic. Social gatherings and sporting events are halted. Healthcare professionals are feeling the strain from fighting on the frontline of the pandemic. The disruptions to daily norms are undeniable. Will daily activities across the nation return to business as usual post-COVID, or has the shared

experience of reacting to a global to begin to retool or reskill for pandemic forever changed social employment in the changing and economic rhythms? What economy can begin their chosen changes related to the future of programs quickly. We are offering work and the future of education financial incentives to attending will remain? Tech in the Summer to include While these realities chalwaived application fees, schollenge the deep-rooted essence arships for every full-time and of what it means to go to school, part-time student, and removal Louisiana Tech is rising to the of online learning fees. Admischallenge. We will continue to sion criteria are being altered, innovate so that our students and practical course pathways can continue to feed their minds, are being designed for students pursue their goals, and remain so they can see their roadmap connected in a physically disconto program completion. Our nected world. adaptation to new technology Since March 13 when we made and our development of on-line the announcement that we certificates will enhance opwould move the current quarter’s portunities for non-traditional classes online, our institution students to respond to changing has logged thousands of hours of requirements in the post-COVID virtual meetings and classes. We economy. have offered educational, finanIt might not be clear what cial, physical, and emotional long-standing impacts our econsupport to our students, faculty, omy and the future of work will and staff through targeted initiaface when tives that the panTo ensure our students – demic subprotect our physical current and future – are sides, but it and menis clear that able to make progress tal wellnimble toward their educational ness while organizagoals, we have moved promoting tions will a sense of Summer classes to the be ready to University respond. online format so that communiEdustudents can continue to ty. We have cational study from home. reschedinstitutions uled comlike Louimencesiana Tech will have to be ready ment and planned a series of to come alongside students and celebrations for our Spring 2020 industry to build relevant and graduates – all in response to responsive programs. At Tech we their requests. expect to have our classrooms We are not done yet. The full of bright minds again soon upcoming Summer quarter at and to be able to hear the busLouisiana Tech is a shining examtling in the hallways. ple of continued nimbleness in Until then, the Tech Family will uncertain times. find opportunities to learn and To ensure our students – curgrow. We respond positively and rent and future – are able to make appropriately to the demands progress toward their educationplaced on our industry, and we al goals, we have moved Summer will continue to deliver unparalclasses to the online format so leled educational experiences to that students can continue to every one of our students. study from home. Many courses will be offered DR. LES GUICE | this Summer as a program entry PRESIDENT OF LOUISIANA TECH point so individuals who need UNIVERSITY.

OPINION q

ROZEMAN Continued from Page 3

Shreveport-Bossier benefit from moving pharmaceutical and critical supply chain manufacturing back to the United States? We can expect that the reinstitution of long-term strict stay at home and temporary business closure strategies will result in the same outcomes for the economy as noted in the initial use of this strategy. We simply cannot afford another round of massive unemployment. This means we have to work together to prevent a second wave of the pandemic. And most important, we can expect doctors, nurses, and respiratory therapists to continue to care for those with COVID-19 without expressing fear. We can expect small business owners to give to their employees more than they can really afford. We can expect volunteers to work 18 hours a day at food banks. We can expect Americans to innovate to help others. We can continue to expect random acts of kindness to be numerous. People overcoming fear and anxiety. People expressing love for each other. People caring for each other. People working together. People building a greater future for our community and nation. DR. PHILLIP ROZEMAN IS FORMER CHAIRMAN OF BLUEPRINT LOUISIANA AND THE GREATER SHREVEPORT CHAMBER OF COMMERCE AND A CURRENT BOARD MEMBER OF THE COMMITTEE OF 100, CABL, PAR, AND LABI.

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OPINION BUSINESS INTERACTIONS q

Why ‘Why’ matters to your business LEADERBOARD q NLEP President Scott Martinez Appointed to Governor’s & Legislative Task Forces to Reopen Louisiana’s Economy North Louisiana Economic Partnership (NLEP) President Scott Martinez has been appointed to two advisory task forces aimed at reopening Louisiana’s economy: the Governor’s Resilient Louisiana Commission and the Louisiana Legislative Advisory Task Force on Economic Recovery. Under the Governor’s Resilient Louisiana Commission, Martinez will co-chair the Economic & Community Development Taskforce, charged with developing strategies to make our regions and communities MARTINEZ more resilient in the face of future healthcare threats and other risks. “I am honored to work with the Governor and Legislative leaders along with my colleagues in economic development and representatives from the private sector to examine how we safely reopen our economy,” said Scott Martinez, CEcD. “How we reopen our economy and the economic development initiatives that we develop in the weeks ahead will have a big impact on how quickly Louisiana’s economy will recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.” The Louisiana Legislative Advisory Task Force on Economic Recovery is charged with crafting comprehensive policy, legislative and regulatory recommendations to immediately re-start the Louisiana economy and to invest in the long-term recovery of households, workers, and businesses from the COVID-19 crisis. The legislative, private-sector advisory Task Force will collaborate to develop practical, specific recommendations to jump-start the Louisiana economy in the short term and work toward a stronger economy in the long term. Recommendations might include statutory and regulatory changes, as well as state aid for affected businesses and workers. The Legislative Task Force will consist of representatives from a wide range of business sectors throughout Louisiana, including oil and gas, agriculture, manufacturing, automotive, banking, hospitality, food and beverage, trucking, construction, and medical.

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One spring day when I was seven, Dad told me to pick up the bits of trash in the yard. I asked Dad why. With frustration in his voice, Dad said HAYNES “Because I told you to.” Fear of a spanking made me do the work although I didn’t want to. My reluctance was evident in my lackadaisical performance. As an adult looking back on that memory, I recognize what was lacking. Would my work have been better had Dad said the following? “Hey Sis, I’m going to mow the back yard in a few minutes. Would you pick up any trash first? I’d hate to mow over the trash and scatter the bits everywhere. I want it to look nice for you and your friends when you play out here.” WHY, worded well, provides a purpose greater than ourselves that inspires us to do our best. A man saw two stonemasons hard at work on a job site. He asked the first one “Do you like your job?” The stonemason replied “It is boring, hard, backbreaking, hot work. I don’t think the project will be finished in my lifetime. But it’s a job. It pays the bills.” The man asked the second stone mason “Do you like your job?” The stonemason replied “I love my job. I’m building a cathedral. I’ve been doing it for so long and the job can be boring, hard, backbreaking, and

hot. But I’m building a cathedral.” (The abridged stonemason story is from Simon Sinek’s book Start with Why.) Which stonemason’s work do you think is of a higher quality? Your employees are not children, and probably not stonemasons. Yet they still need and want to know why. You need them to know WHY because you get their best when they know why. Of course, there is more to it. WHY must be from the other person’s perspective, not

WHY, worded well, provides a purpose greater than ourselves that inspires us to do our best.

yours. Below is a guide. What is the purpose or intent of the project or task you want done? Example: Reopen the business to restart income flow. Why is it important to you or the company? Example: Two more months of shut-down will bankrupt the company. What is the current situation? Example: Some employees may fear coming back so soon. Maybe daycare isn’t open yet. How do I keep people safe?

What are your employees’ perspectives and concerns? Example: Income, food, daycare, rent/mortgage, safety, etc. From what angle would your employees see the benefit to themselves, agree to the work, and perhaps have a higher purpose that would inspire them for excellent performance? What is the WHY for your employees? Example: “In order to get all of you earning money again, we need to reopen the shop. Initially, I can re-hire only half of you. Those of you who return first will lead the company into the new normal. Masks and gloves will be provided to protect the customers, you, and ultimately your children. For additional safety, lunch will be catered for the first week as we figure out the details together. Who is ready to come back to work? Business owners want employees who care, do an excellent job, take ownership of their areas of responsibility, take pride in their work, brag about the company, get along with each other, and provide exceptional customer service. In one word, employers want Engaged employees. To obtain that, start with WHY. TERI HAYNES | BUSINESS INTERACTIONS, LLC | IMPROVING HUMAN INTERACTIONS IN BUSINESS

Best Places to Work nominations now open

Nominations are now open for BIZ.’s annual Best Places to Work awards. Nominations May be submitted at https://bizmagsb.com/ bp2w20/ We want to recognize the businesses that do it right and do right by their people. We celebrate companies in our community that have achieved success through strong leadership who empowers, rewards, and supports their employees.


NONPROFITS

Give for Good already under way due to pandemic BY STACEY TINSLEY BIZ. Magazine

Nonprofits need help now more than ever. During this time of stay at home and social distancing, one of north Louisiana’s largest fundraising events is currently taking place online. Traditionally, the Community Foundation of North Louisiana hosts Give For Good as a 24hour day of giving. But due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Community Foundation of North Louisiana has changed this year’s campaign in a unique way. “COVID-19 has multiplied the needs in our community overnight such that nonprofits are being called upon like never before. As those needs continue to grow and change, charitable giving is more important than ever. By donating online during Give For Good, you can do your part by staying home while raising crucial dollars for nonprofit businesses of your choosing. This year, giving is open April 21 - May 5 to give donors more opportunities for social-dis-

CLOSER LOOK q How to Give Visit giveforgoodnla.org from April 21-May 5. Choose your favorite causes and add as many organizations to your cart as you like. Give your best and check out in one easy step. You’ll receive a tax receipt immediately. All gifts are amplified by the Lagniappe Fund, a bonus pool of $200,000 that is awarded through pro-rata matching and prizes. On the following pages, Give For Good participating nonprofits have advertising for their organizations.

tanced philanthropy,” said Emily Smith, Director of Marketing and Communication for the Community Foundation. “No matter the dollar value, all gifts are indispensable to the nonprofits and community members they support. Nonprofit organizations provide vital support and resources to our community. Many of them have seen an increase in the number of people they are serving due to the virus and most have lost revenue or had to cancel critical fundraising events. The Community Foundation hopes Give For

Good provides a vehicle not only for immediate needs, but helps organizations build their long-term sustainability so they can continue to be here and serve our community,” she added. In 2019, Give For Good raised more than $1.8 million from 4,251 donors for 222 North Louisiana nonprofits. Since it began in 2014, Give For Good has raised more than $10 million for our community. The Community Foundation started Give For Good as a way to help north Louisiana nonprofits

raise crucial unrestricted dollars. It also brings donors together to strengthen our community through collective philanthropy. A community giving collectively is much more powerful than any one donor alone. The Community Foundation of North Louisiana understands that donating during this time might be difficult for some. But Smith says now is the time nonprofits need us, as a community, the most. “We are grateful to live in a generous community that comes together to help each other in times of need. While many people are experiencing job loss or uncertainty, we are calling on those who are able to give. Our community needs you now more than ever as we work to create a stronger, more vibrant North Louisiana,” said Smith. This year, 249 nonprofits are participating. Categories of nonprofits include animal, education, arts and culture, religious, community improvement, health, environment, human services and youth development. “No gift is too small,” said Smith.

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W H A T

I T

M E A N S

W H E N

Y O U

T O

CHANGE LIVES IN YOUR OWN COMMUNITY The American Heart Association is dedicated to changing these statistics by building a culture of health.

PATIENT SUPPORT NETWORK LEARN MORE AT

Facilitating emotional connections for more than 143,000 heart and stroke patients, caregivers and volunteers per year.

NWLAHeartWalk.org

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FUNDING FROM THE HEART


YOU MAKE THIS POSSIBLE!

• Over 80 visual artists • More than 65 performances & headliners • Over 30 nonprofit partners provide activities/fundraise at the Revel

W W W. R E D R I V E R R E V E L .C O M

E DQ

YOUR GENEROUS SUPPORT MAKES ALL THE DIFFERENCE!

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giveforgoodnla.org NORTH CENTRAL LOUISIANA ARTS COUNCIL

Nurturing the Arts in North Louisiana for over 30 years.

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Alzheimer’s & Dementia Resource Center

No client or caregiver should make this journey alone. Call us to be added to our mailing list and keep up to date with what is available.

318-780-7906

3825 Gilbert Drive, Suite 131, Shreveport, LA 71104 www.alzagency.org Advice, counsel and coaching via phone or in-person

Printed and online resource directory

In-home assessments

Information and referrals for local service provision

Assistance with transition decisions

Advocacy, interventions, problem-solving

Caregiver support groups

Family meetings and arbitration

Education for caregivers and clients Art Expressions experiences at local facilities All donations are used locally and all services provided are free of charge

DONATE AT www.giveforgoodnla.org/HighlandRestorationAssociation

OUTDOOR BEAUTIFICATION flowers, gateways, home improvement grants NEIGHBORHOOD MEETINGS & NEWSLETTERS city department speakers, community updates ISSUE ADVOCACY property standards, zoning SUPPORT OF NEIGHBORHOOD PARTNERS Highland Jazz & Blues Fest, National Night Out VOLUNTEER WORK Centenary’s Big Event, Great American Clean-Up

Highland Restoration Association @RestoreHighland

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Support all of the urgent humanitarian needs of the American Red Cross. Text GIVE to 90999 to donate $10

A one-time donation of $10 will be added to your mobile phone bill. All donations must be authorized by the account holder. Message & Data Rates May Apply. 292901-51 4/20

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www.giveforgoodnla.org/ foodbank

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www.foodbanknla.org


The Society of St. Vincent de Paul provides EMERGENCY financial assistance primarily for rental & mortgage payments, uDlity payments & food. Help Us Help Our Local “Friends in Need”

Give Early!

April 24 – May 4 or May 5, 2020

$190,018 . . . Utility Assistance $62,252 . . . Rental Assistance $36,582 . . . Food Assistance $18,435 . . . Clothing Assistance $7,320 . . . Furniture Assistance $1,624 . . . Other Assistance (legal, medical, dental, etc.)

FY 2019 Data

www.giveforgoodnla.org/StVincentdePaul

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Our top priority is the health of our students, faculty, and staff. The spring semester and May term classes are being conducted remotely and campus life is quiet, but Centenary’s student support remains constant. We appreciate your support of Give for Good and the Centenary College COVID-19 Response Fund.

Give now through May 5th at giveforgoodnla.org/centenarycollege

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Did you know that one of North Louisiana’s largest events takes place entirely online? In 2019, 4,251 donors came together to raise $1.8 MILLION for North Louisiana nonprofits in just 24 hours. Now giving back is more important than ever.

Choose your favorite causes at giveforgoodnla.org. Giving is open April 21 - May 5!

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Profile for Bossier Press-Tribune

05-2020 BIZ, Magazine  

The May issue of BIZ. Magazine features the reopening of the economy post-COVID19 from a business standpoint. Also, the 2020 Give for Good...

05-2020 BIZ, Magazine  

The May issue of BIZ. Magazine features the reopening of the economy post-COVID19 from a business standpoint. Also, the 2020 Give for Good...

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