Acadiana Profile February-March 2018

Page 1

light recipes Satisfying one-pot dishes pg. 42

Braised Chicken Thighs with Vegetable Hash

Community of the Year PG. 54

Top Doctors + Toughest Cases PG. 50

features CĂŠlĂŠbrer le mode de vie acadien


simmering satisfaction Light and flavorful one-pot dishes by Stanley Dry photos by Eugenia Uhl


Community of the Year Breaux Bridge remains authentically Cajun with a thriving art scene, innovation and small town charm by will kalec


Top Doctors 148 Doctors in 37 Specialties Profiles by fritz esker photos by romero & Romero

feb/march volume 37 number 1

lagniappe . . ...................................... 10

la musique...................................... 76

A little Extra

Out of the Shed Super group Sarcotics brings forceful sounds to Lafayette

note de l’editeur............................. 14

Editor’s Note

les personnes . . ................................ 78 lettres d’amour.............................. 16

Acadian Revelations: A foodie’s winding journey to Cajun country


nouvelles de villes. . ....................... 18

News Briefs

les ar tistes...................................... 71

food+drink sur le menu..................................... 35

Pull Over for Prejean’s Lafayette staple marries kitchy atmosphere with authentic cuisine de la cuisine................................... 38

Good Catch A Lent-approved Valentine’s Day menu

home+style la maison.. ...................................... 23

Signature Style A notable artist revives a midcentury modern house with nature as his muse

recettes de cocktails.. ................... 40

Rum Revival Shake up a sassy spring cocktail with a tart-sweet edge

pour la maison.............................. 28

Mantel with Flair (and Flare) Simple style tips from Lafayette designer Elizabeth Gerace for an eye-catching display À la mode . . ..................................... 30

Face Facts Luxurious products that produce clinical results

Stanley Dry’s light, one-pot meals offer flavor, nutrition and visual appeal. The Braised Chicken Thighs with Vegtable Hash offer the comfort of a winter dish, but with the color and lightness of spring fare. We’ll have seconds!


Then, Now and Every Place In Between Former UL professor Lynda Frese takes a 40-year look in the rearview mirror, while also looking ahead

Wear y’Hat New Iberia’s Colby Hebert combines a love of performing, costumes and culture to fit perfectly atop your head en français, s’il vous plaît........... 80

Dr. John Bertrand L’homme qu’il fallait 9



A Little Extra

International and Regional Magazine Association

What’s your favorite recipe to jump start a healthy eating plan?


(adj.) Healthy (climate, food, attitude)

Errol Laborde Melanie Warner Spencer Associate Editor Ashley McLellan Copy Editor Amanda Orr Ar t Director Sarah George Lead Photographer Danley Romero Web Editor Kelly Massicot Editor in Chief

adver tising

Colleen Monaghan (504) 830-7215 / Sales Manager Rebecca Taylor (337) 298-4424 / (337) 235-7919 Ext. 230 Vice President of Sales


To help navigate the delicious culinary pitfalls and potholes, registered dietician Molly Kimball and Ochsner Health Systems collaborated to form Eat Fit, a program that helps food lovers across south Louisiana (and beyond) make good choices, even while dining out. Programs provide shopping tips at local farmers’ markets, cooking classes and workshops and ways to monitor cholesterol, blood pressure and manage diabetes. A new Eat Fit app also takes the guess work out clean eating-onthe-go by providing recipes, nutrition information, and healthy choices for restaurants in New Orleans, the north shore of Lake Ponchartrain (Northshore), Baton Rouge, Acadiana (Bayou) and Washington Parish, with more locations being added all the time. So when do we eat?

Bronze Will Kalec for Magazine Writer of the Year

Managing Editor

translation: Claire feels refreshed after starting the year with a new healthy eating plan.

Louisianans love to eat. Talking about food is a favorite past time. We talk about where we’re going to eat for dinner even before we’ve finished lunch.



example: Claire se sent rafraîchie après avoir commencé l’année avec un nouveau plan d’alimentation saine.

“Grilled fish and roasted veggies with olive oil and herbs.” - Rebecca

“Homemade brown butter chocolate chip cookies and a tall glass of cold milk… that’s healthy right?” - Sarah

Silver Sarah George for Cover Gold Denny Culbert for Magazine Photographer of the Year Gold Sarah George for Art Direction of a Single Story Gold Sarah George for Overall Art Direction


Cheryl Lemoine Event Coordinator Whitney Weathers digital media associate Mallary Matherne For event information call (504) 830-7264

Director of Marketing & Events

Gold Cheré Coen and Denny Culbert for Food Feature

production Production manager

Jessica DeBold 2016

Production Designers


Emily Andras Demi Schaffer Molly Tullier manager Topher Balfer administration

John Holzer Mallary Matherne Subscription Manager Brittani Bryant For subscriptions call (504) 830-7231 Chief Executive Officer Todd Matherne President Alan Campell Executive Vice President Errol Laborde Distribution Manager

office manager

“I usually have to inspire myself to eat healthy, so I tend to make a salad that has some tasty things in moderation: arugula with crispy prosciutto, parmesan cheese shavings and a fried egg on top — filling and healthy.” - Emily

Bronze Will Kalec for Magazine Writer of the Year Bronze Danley Romero for Portrait Series Silver Denny Culbert for Photo Series Gold Denny Culbert for Magazine Photographer of the Year Gold Sarah George for Art Direction of a Single Story

110 Veterans Blvd. / Suite 123 / Metairie, LA 70005 / (504) 828-1380 / (877) 221-3512 128 Demanade / Suite 104 / Lafayette, LA 70503 / (337) 235-7919 ext. 230

Acadiana Profile (ISSN 0001-4397) is published bimonthly by Renaissance Publishing LLC, 110 Veterans Blvd., Suite 123, Metairie, LA 70005 (504) 828-1380 and 128 Demanade, Suite 104, Lafayette, LA 70503 (337) 235-7919 ext. 230. Subscription rate: One year $10; Foreign Subscriptions vary. Periodicals postage paid at Lafayette, LA, and additional mailing entry offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Acadiana Profile, 110 Veterans Blvd., Suite 123, Metairie, LA 70005. Copyright 2017 Renaissance Publishing LLC. No part of this publication may be reproduced without the consent of the publisher. The trademark Acadiana Profile is registered. Acadiana Profile is not responsible for unsolicited manuscripts, photos and artwork, even if accompanied by a self-addressed stamped envelope. The opinions expressed in Acadiana Profile are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the magazine or owner.

Gold Sarah George for Overall Art Direction Finalist Magazine of the Year 11

ĂŠquipe de vente

Rebecca Taylor Sales Manager (337) 298-4424 (337) 235-7919 Ext. 230

Colleen Monaghan Vice President of Sales (504) 830-7215


acadiana profile Feb/march 2018 13

note de l’editeur

n the publishing business, the new year is often a time to revamp our publications by making I additions and changes in the departments and features or rolling out a new design for the Edtior’s picks

You’ve Got to Check this Out

handy and handmade

You’ve likely seen potter Rex Alexander selling his work outside Stellar Beans in Lake Charles at the SWLArt Friday Night Art Broad Street Market. Or perhaps you spied his mugs, bowls and other wares inside the coffee shop. Alexander’s ceramic oyster shells (available by special order) will take the presentation for your next batch of chargrilled oysters to the next level. Check out Alexander’s work and find out about upcoming events at TRXpottery.

ar tful yoga

On the second Saturday of each month from 11 a.m. to noon, the Paul and Lulu Hilliard University Art Museum hosts Yoga in the Galleries. The classes are now sponsored by Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana and are free to the public. Class size is limited to the first 20 participants, so get there early and bring your own mat.


acadiana profile Feb/march 2018

magazine. We’ve done just that with Acadiana Profile and we are thrilled to introduce you to our new look and a few new additions. First, aside from the new design, we are offering up additional blurbs in each article, including tips, events, tidbits about the people we profile and other lagniappe to enhance each piece. Next, you’ll notice “Lettres D’amour,” a new column on page 16. A different writer will pen each installment, which is a place to share why they love this special region of Acadiana. For the inaugural “Lettres D’amour,” food writer, author and Shreveport-native Stanley Dry tells us how he fell in love with Acadiana and moved to New Iberia after many years spent living in Chicago, Boston and New York. Now is the time of year when most of us have probably abandoned our resolutions (especially given weeks of Carnival revelry). I’m not much for resolutions to begin with, truth be told, but goals are right up my alley. We already checked the goal of redesigning and tweaking the magazine off of our to-do list and we hope you like it. Another one of my goals is to eat a lot more oysters in 2018. As you can see from the photo accompanying my note, I’m not averse to traveling to far-flung locales to get a fix. This is from a trip last spring to San Francisco. We took a side jaunt to Hog Island Oyster Co., where we shucked and consumed oysters that were literally pulled out of the bay a couple of hours prior to our arrival. Thankfully, there are plenty of oysters indigenous to the Gulf Coast region, so I don’t actually have to travel to get a fix. Marcelle Bienvenu’s oyster and artichoke soup in “De La Cuisine” on page 38 is just one of dozens of ways to prepare and serve this tasty and nutritious bivalve. Speaking of food-related goals, if you are trying to consume healthier fare in 2018, check out Stanley Dry’s light, one-pot meals on page 42. The recipes are packed with nutrition and flavor. What are you hoping to achieve in 2018? Email me to discuss that or the new look and offerings, so you can help me reach my other goal: hearing more from our readers. Cheers!

Melanie Warner Spencer, Managing Editor (504) 830-7239 | 15

lettres d’amour

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Stanley Dry writes the “Kitchen Gourmet” column for Louisiana Life. He is a former senior editor of Food & Wine magazine and author of “The Essential Louisiana Cookbook” and “The Essential Louisiana Seafood Cookbook”, both published by the parent company of Acadiana Profile.


Acadian revelations A foodie’s winding journey to Cajun country by Stanley Dry illustration by John Holder


acadiana profile Feb/march 2018

y Acadiana love affair began on a high school trip to Sulphur, when my hosts awakened me with an early morning demitasse. The aroma and taste of that strong black coffee was a revelation to a Shreveport boy who knew only coffee the color of tea. I was hooked, and for years after moving away from Louisiana, I had a regular supply of dark roast Community Coffee delivered by mail. College in Lafayette cemented my bond to South Louisiana and frequent trips afterwards kept that relationship fresh. For most of my adult life I have been involved with food, either cooking it or writing about it, so it’s no surprise that my love for Acadiana has a lot to do with eating. No other part of the country has such a strong regional food culture, and you find evidence of that everywhere. I know of no other area where you can eat so well on a daily basis without really trying. It’s an exception if you don’t get a good meal in a local restaurant or café or even a gas station, for that matter. I remember arriving at the Lafayette airport on a breezy spring afternoon in 1985. The weather was a welcome tonic for someone living in New York City, where the temperature was decidedly not mild. In my 25 years living away from Louisiana, mostly in Chicago, Boston and New York, March was the cruelest month. The long winters, while brutal, were bearable, but March broke your spirit. Although my internal clock told me that spring should have arrived, that was never the case. Sometimes it wasn’t until May that the season flipped. That trip was one of many that I made to Acadiana in the mid-to-late ‘80s, some of them on assignment to write about Cajun country. I drove the back roads from Ville Platte to Cypremort Point, from Morgan City to Forked Island, stopping at little cafés, bars, grocery stores, meat markets, dance halls — any place that looked interesting. In a week’s time, I logged 1,000 miles. Of course, I ate prodigiously and well, and each trip strengthened my desire to return, not just for a visit, but to live. In my years away from Louisiana, I kept close a few items that provided cultural, as well as practical, links to the state — a French drip coffee pot, a bottle of Tabasco, a bottle of Peychaud’s Bitters and a worn Cajun cookbook. By 1990, I decided to move back to Acadiana, plant a garden and find a way to make a living. By the fall, I had left New York behind and moved into a house on a bayou south of New Iberia. My neighbor made good, barrel-aged moonshine at his camp in the Atchafalaya Basin, but that’s another story. n 17

nouvelles de villes news by Lisa LeBlanc-Berry calendar by Kelly Massicot


Lake Charles

Casino Acquisition

3 Festivals for February

Pinnacle Entertainment, the parent company of L’Auberge Casino Resort in Lake Charles, is being acquired by Penn National Gaming, Inc., in a cash and stock transaction valued at around $2.8 billion. The transaction is expected to close in the second half of 2018. The deal also includes L’Auberge Casino and Hotel in Baton Rouge as well as Boomtown Casino and Hotel in New Orleans and Bossier City.

1 Courir de Mardi Gras Feb. 9-13 Eunice

Part of a fiveday Mardi Gras celebration held in Cajun Country, the Courir de Mardi Gras is the centerpiece of Mardi Gras in Eunice. The highlight is over 2,000 participants chasing a chicken for a community gumbo.

Now Available DVDs of the award-winning film, “Zachary Richard, Toujours Batailleur” (Acadian French) and “Zachary Richard, Cajun Heart” (English) are now available for purchase on the Acadie-Nouvelle Boutique website for North Americans. English DVD: catalogue/boutique/dvd/ zachary-richard-cajun-heart, and the Acadian French DVD: boutique/dvd/zahcaryrichard-toujours-batailleur

2 Taste de la Louisiane Feb. 11 Lake Charles

Held at the Lake Charles Civic Center, the Taste de la Louisiane is one of the many events held during Mardi Gras season in Lake Charles. The event is a large food festival where guests can come and taste samples of traditional Louisiana cuisine.

3 Louisiana Winter Beer Festival Feb. 24 Lake Charles

Guests can sample over 125 different beers from 40 different breweries, while snacking on eats from several local restaurants. The event takes place at the Historic Calcasieu Marine National Bank in Downtown Lake Charles.


Eunice, Opelousas, Iowa, New Iberia

Tail Squeezing, Head Sucking, Tongue Tasting, BBQ and Bunny Cook-offs More than 100 professional and amateur teams are competing during the 33rd annual World Championship Etouffée Cook-off, held March 25 in Eunice. Enjoy live music, a petting zoo, a fun jump and crafts aplenty. Don’t miss the big-time barn dance. Ever tasted beef tongue? Here’s your chance. The 33rd annual Beef Cookoff is held March 4 in Opelousas featuring an old-fashioned trail ride, a cattle dog exhibit, live music, and aspiring culinary artists preparing everything from brisket to beef tongue and desserts. Hop on over to Iowa March 16-17 for a hare-raising good time. Over 20,000 people are expected for the rabbit cook-off, live Cajun and zydeco music, Petite Lapin pageant, a carnival, and the Tiny Town Rabbit Club’s kid-friendly rabbit show with over 400 bunnies hopping about ( Stroll beneath the branches during New Iberia’s Festival of Live Oaks March 17 and enjoy a barbeque cook-off, Easter egg hunt, pony rides, sweet booths, kids’ activities and live music (

acadiana profile Feb/march 2018


New Teaching Lab The University of Louisiana at Lafayette and LSU were each awarded a $25,000 grant by the state’s Department of Education to lead the Louisiana Educator Research Consortium for five years. Starting in January, the two institutions began directing research, seeking grants and offering advice on education-related policies, while including members of teacher preparation programs from across the state. The UL Lafayette College of Education plans to relaunch a lab school at the university, which will provide a hub for teaching practices, theory and research. 19

nouvelles de villes news by Lisa LeBlanc-Berry calendar by Kelly Massicot


Hail to the Chief calendar

Dr. Jay Clune has been named the 6th President of Nicholls State University, effective as of Jan.1.

3 Festivals for March


Write On

Festival of the Ar ts.

The 15th annual Jambalaya Writers’ Conference is held March 3 in Houma featuring a keynote address delivered by “Goosebumps” series author, R.L. Stine. Other featured writers include Joshilyn Jackson, Melissa Marr, Louisiana Poet Laureate Jack Bedell, David Middleton, Maurice Carlos Ruffin, Katy Simpson Smith and Liz Talley (

March 5-26 Lafayette

Each year, the University of Louisiana at Lafayette’s College of Arts holds a twoweek art showcase celebrating works from faculty, students and UL community partners. Guests can expect art exhibits, live music and theater performances among the festivities.


Community Icon

2 Celtic Bayou Festival. March 16-17 Lafayette

This family-friendly event is Lafayette’s first traditional Irish festival. Attendees can see Irish dancing, listen to Celtic music or even visit a genealogy tent to trace their Irish roots.

3 Crawfish ÉtouffÉe Cook-off March 26 Eunice

This year marks the 32rd annual World Championship Crawfish Étouffée Cook-off in Eunice. Taste some étouffée, listen to some music, peruse local arts and crafts and enjoy free admission and free parking.


Lake Charles, Breaux Bridge, Morgan City

Close Encounters of the Scaly Kind Just before Christmas, a big gator was spotted by motorists lazily crossing the road near the I-10 Westbound Ryan St. exit in Lake Charles. It was eventually removed by wildlife agents, but not before crawling under a freaked-out bystander’s car. Another attempted reptilian road crossing occurred in Elm Grove with an 11-footer. Just before mating season, a Breaux Bridge family discovered a big gator looking for love just a few inches from their front door and it was promptly removed by a trapper. Yet another (smaller) gator was seen strolling through a Morgan City cemetery, smack in the middle of town. Since the region has the largest alligator population in the United States, (2 million wild alligators, plus the 300,000 on farms) beware of reptilian encounters when the water rises in 2018.

acadiana profile Feb/march 2018

Timed for Judge Kaliste Saloom’s 99th birthday, friends gathered at UL Lafayette’s Dupré Library in August 2017 to view a documentary featuring Saloom sharing his life and Lafayette’s history, produced by former Mardi Gras King Stuart Clark. Saloom died in December. Born the fifth of seven children to Lebanese immigrants, he served as city judge for 40 years before retiring in 1993. As a judge, Saloom achieved many significant changes that included reforming the process of overseeing the expansion of the court in 1984 from one judge to two. He helped found the Lafayette Juvenile Detention Home and the Acadiana Safety Council, and served as an advocate for disadvantaged people, while taking a stance for civil rights. He was inducted into the Louisiana Political Hall of Fame in 2016. Clark describes Saloom as extremely humble, despite his many accomplishments. The DVD is now located in the library’s Special Collections Center, where it can be checked out and viewed. 21


acadiana profile Feb/march 2018

home+style Inspiration, dĂŠcoration et accessoires chic pour la vie

la maison

Signature Style A notable artist revives a midcentury modern house with nature as his muse by Lisa LeBlanc-Berry photos by Chad Chenier

Artist Herman Mhire designed a desk for his minimalist master suite surrounded by custom windows that provide views of serene grounds with up-lit oaks and a pitched-roof studio dramatized by abundant glass.

home + style

Left “Prayer Sticks,” a totemic sculpture of driftwood and polychrome by New Orleans native John Geldersma, is among the owner’s diverse collection. Right Herman Mhire’s hand-colored archival pigment print, “Sinustrombus Sinuatus,” provides a colorful contrast to the black-and-white living room appointed with a slipcovered Mitchell + Gold sofa and sleek laminate coffee table, a Prince AHA stool of hourglass polypropylene cones and a vintage Wassily midcentury modern tubular steel and leather chair.


la maison


sk the globe-trotting Francophile, Herman Mhire, to describe his aesthetic philosophy, and the prodigious Cajun artist readily professes modernist leanings. “I’m fascinated by midcentury modern design because it represents the time in which I was born,” says Mhire. “I admire advances made in the use of industrial material and technologies for residential and commercial construction as well as interior furnishings, and by midcentury modern’s strong interest in eliminating visual barriers between interior and exterior spaces.”

acadiana profile Feb/march 2018

Since acquiring a circa 1940s midcentury modern residence in 1991, the venerated Lafayette native has been meticulously transforming the house and grounds as an ongoing work of art. Improvements demonstrating Mhire’s unique style and propensity for perfectionism have included multiple upgrades for the Zen-like gardens he designed, and the addition of a new studio dramatized by walls of glass. Harnessing elements of modernity, Mhire replicated the idea in the main house. He opened up interior spaces 25


acadiana profile Feb/march 2018

by replacing numerous, adjoining windows with energyefficient, impact-resistant annealed glass. Views of his beloved gardens were essential to the design. Another transformation occurred in September, when the guest house was converted into a chic Airbnb rental with midcentury modern elements. Mhire’s style is characterized by the clean simplicity of sun-flooded rooms, his collection of significant midcentury pieces that spark conversation, and the strategic placement of vibrant paintings, prints and photographs gleaned from prior exhibits, including his 2017 “Beauty in the Beast” solo exhibition of 65 digital archival prints. “The exhibition expressed my renewed interest in photography as a medium,” he says. “My current body of work is based upon photographs I took one year ago, on my way to the Tashcen bookstore on the rue de Buci in the 6th arrondissement of Paris.” In conjunction with the solo exhibition, Mhire was honored by ULL with a Lifetime Achievement Award. The former art professor is the founding director of the Paul and Lula Hilliard University Art Museum, where he curated more than 200 exhibitions.The Hilliard was Lafayette’s first professionally designed art museum. Mhire’s architectural collaboration brought national design awards.

A bilingual pioneer of the arts, he is the founding president of Festival International de Louisiane, and frequently travels to Europe as a tour guide. “In January, 1985, I presented an exhibition of narrative paintings on glass from Senegal, West Africa,” says Mhire. “To complement the exhibition, Senegalese musicians traveled to Lafayette to perform their traditional music. In the summer, I traveled to Amman, Jordan where I worked on an international traveling exhibition. Returning to Lafayette, I visited museums and attended concerts in Amsterdam and New York. The overall culmination was so powerful that in August, I had an idea to organize an annual visual and performing arts festival in Lafayette.” Mhire’s beloved festival, now considered the largest free outdoor Francophone arts fest in the world, will be held April 25-29 in downtown Lafayette. More than 300,000 patrons are expected to attend. In April, he will lead a group of travelers on a voyage to Paris, St. Petersburg and Moscow to explore the grand museums, concert halls, gardens and architectural treasures. The tour culminates with a cruise along Russia’s legendary Volga River.

Natural light streams through a tropical, custom stained-glass window near the kitchen table, which is amply illuminated with a bubble lamp saucer ceiling pendant by George Nelson. A set of vintage Marcel Breuer cane bentwood chairs add a midcentury modern feel to the cozy dining nook. Right Mhire’s art storage room catalogues various prints, photographs and paintings from previous exhibitions that showcase his ever-evolving technical prowess and emerging techniques.

Left 27

home + style

pour la maison

ABOUT THE designer: Elizabeth Gerace is an award-winning designer who has lived in Lafayette since earning her bachelor’s degree in interior design from the University of Louisiana.

MANTEL WITH FLAIR (and flare) Simple style tips from Lafayette designer Elizabeth Gerace for an eye-catching display steps

Decorating the Mantel

by Marie Elizabeth Oliver photo by Romero & Romero

1 Choose a show-stopping focal point. Look for something about twothirds the size of your mantel.

2 Frame the space. Sconces draw attention and illuminate your focal point.

3 Add something structural. A vase with seasonal foliage (real or faux) adds life.

4 Layer with a curated collection. Group odd numbers of things that are a reflection of your style. Keep it minimal.



f you’re lucky enough to have a mantel in your home, you’ve probably spent some time wondering if you’re making the most of it. According to Elizabeth Gerace, a Lafayette-based designer, your mantel decoration should first and foremost be a reflection of your style. “The mantel is the focal point of the room — you should have fun with it,” says Gerace. “It’s a great place to have a showstopper.” She recommends starting with a piece you love that is about two-thirds the size of your mantel. Gerace usually gravitates toward a client’s art collection, but says a mirror can be a great choice to reflect light. Sconces are another way to brighten the space and give your focal point a sense of importance. “You can really set the tone and show a bit of your personality by adding quirky lighting,” says Gerace, who loves adding something unexpected, such as round bulbs with a more traditional fixture. Next, she suggests bringing in a sculptural detail — a vase filled with seasonal greenery — to add weight on

acadiana profile Feb/march 2018

either side of your vignette. She favors native, seasonal plants, like cypress or fern clippings. “Plants are a great way to add life to a space,” advises Gerace. For those with a black thumb, she recommends dried flowers or spending the extra money to get high quality, artificial plants and “planting” them in real soil. As a final step, Gerace suggests pulling in a few items of varying heights, grouped in odd numbers. This is a perfect opportunity to display a small personal collection or a couple of antique store gems. But, whatever you do, don’t go overboard. The biggest design mistake you can make on your mantel, according to Gerace? Piling on too much stuff. n [Product credits: Capital Lighting three-light wall sconces in aged brass courtesy of Teche Lighting Center; painting is untitled work by Acadiana artist Olin “Leroy” Evans from the personal collection of Julia Autin Adams.] 29

Exercising, eating healthy and drinking lots of water will do wonders for your skin. Grow your glow to the next level in 2018 by adding powerful potions that pack a punch.

Skincare goals:

home + style

a la mode


For Healthy Skin

1 SkinMedica Purifying Foam Wash

Face Facts 5

Luxurious products that produce clinical results by Ashley Hinson photo by Romero & Romero

An effective but gentle chemical exfoliant that will clear clogged pores and blemishes to speed up the healing process. Nouriche.

2 GlowBiotics MD Probiotic Brightening + Refining Layering Solution


This probiotic formula contains a potent blend of topical probiotics and antioxidants to improve texture and rejuvenate skin. Acadiana Aesthetic.



3 Zo® Skin health Olluminate

A powerful treatment that uses retinol and peptides to smooth fine lines and wrinkles, enhancing skin texture. Nouriche.


4 GloSkin Beauty Hydration mist

Use this antioxidantrich hydration solution for makeup setting, dry skin due to travel, or to refresh your look from day to night. Ashero.

4 SkinMedica TNS Essential System

This serums sink into the skin to provide deep, lasting moisture and a smooth surface for makeup application. Dr. Chris Hubbell and Ajeuné Aesthetic Skin Experts.



ive your skin the love it deserves with medical-grade products that will look beautiful in your bathroom and feel beautiful on your skin. With the latest scientific advances in your arsenal, you’ll glow all year round. Nouriche, 605 Silverstone Road #100, 337-266-9985, • Acadiana Aesthetic Skincare, 917 Coolidge St., Lafayette, 337-446-2425, • Ashero, 233 Doucet Road, B1, Lafayette. 337-984-9972, • Dr. Chris Hubbell and Ajeuné Aesthetic Skin Experts, 913 S. College Road, Lafayette. 337-981-6065, n

acadiana profile Feb/march 2018 31


Junior League of Lafayette

Kitchen Tour Saturday, March 17th, 12:00 pm-4:00 pm

TALK ABOUT GOOD KITCHENS! Junior League of Lafayette announces the return of the hit event, Kitchen Tour. This year’s Tour will take attendees on a self-guided tour of six kitchens and outdoor entertaining spaces in the Lafayette area. The Tour will showcase renovations and timeless home construction that is sure to inspire all who visit. Whether spending an afternoon with friends or gathering ideas for kitchen remodels, attendees are certain to enjoy viewing these magnificent kitchens and outdoor entertaining spaces, all while supporting Junior League of Lafayette. Join Junior League of Lafayette on Saturday, March 17 from 12 p.m. until 4 p.m. for an afternoon of fun and fabulous kitchens. Each $25 ticket includes entry into six homes as well as sampling of tasty treats from Junior League of Lafayette cookbooks throughout the tour. Visit to purchase tickets.

JUNIOR LEAGUE OF LAFAYETTE MISSION Junior League of Lafayette is an organization of women committed to promoting voluntarism, developing the potential of women, and improving the community through the effective action and leadership of trained volunteers. Its purpose is exclusively educational and charitable.

Our Value to the Community Junior League of Lafayette • Has served the Lafayette community since 1957 • Leverages local nonprofit partnerships to better the community • Offers direct assistance in the form of resource and enrichment grants awarded to nonprofit agencies • Trains its members to assume leadership positions within and outside of Junior League • Members volunteer on boards of nonprofit agencies throughout the community Scan for More


Junior League of Lafayette by the Numbers. In 2016-2017: 650+ membership of women

6,594 people impacted

25,391 member volunteer hours supporting community agencies and programs

$135,000 awarded in grants to local nonprofit agencies


acadiana profile Feb/march 2018

President Corinne Cotten Sprague President-Elect Mary Courville Chair Kasey Dean George


Homes Featured on the Tour

Amelia Street - the Roy residence - Inspired by Versailles, this stately, historic home with three kitchens will transport you to France. • Southlawn Drive - the Roth residence - Timeless elegance is displayed throughout this beautiful home tucked away in the heart of Lafayette. • West Bayou Parkway - the Moss/Roy residence - A modern kitchen with touches of Santa Fe will leave you feeling relaxed and tranquil. • Whitcomb Drive - the Kilgore residence - Completely renovated with entertaining in mind, this stunning kitchen and custom wine cellar are the soul of every gathering. • Acacia Drive- the Loftin residence - Ultra hip and cool are just a few words to describe this recently renovated, contemporary home. • Mill Valley Run - the Block residence - An outdoor oasis overlooking the Vermilion River, this outdoor kitchen is every man’s dream. 33


acadiana profile Feb/march 2018

food+drink Ça c’est bon

sur la menu

Pull Over for Prejean’s Lafayette staple marries kitschy atmosphere with authentic cuisine by Jyl Benson photos by Denny Culbert

Fresh from the Gulf shrimp simmered in Abita Turbodog beer and Worcestershire sauce served with toasted bread points for dipping.


food + drink sur la menu

about the chef: Chef de Cuisine Ernest Prejean, who started as a dishwasher in 1993, lays out an abundant menu where it is hard to go wrong.


4 Dishes to Try 1 Carencro Kicking Shrimp

Crisply coated with panko then tossed in a creamy, spicy sauce and served over Sriracha cabbage slaw with a sweet chili sauce drizzle.

2 Shrimp Sassafras

Two gigantic shrimp are stuffed with pepper jack cheese and grilled tasso, then wrapped in applewood-smoked bacon. They are then breaded, fried and served atop Crawfish Cardinale cream sauce.

3 Tout Que’ Chose

Get fried frog legs, crawfish tails, mushrooms, alligator, popcorn shrimp and crawfish boudin balls.

4 Alligator Cheesecake

Smoked alligator sausage and Gulf shrimp with cream cheese and seasoning that’s baked in a Parmesan and panko crust. The dish is finished with rawfish Cardinale cream sauce.



f travelling on the Evangeline Throughway either to or from I-10, Prejean’s Restaurant in Lafayette will rise up along the side of the road amid lots with neat rows of trailers and trucks for sale. The parking lot is always jammed and Cajun music can be heard in the parking lot. Upon opening the door patrons will be obliged to cross a faux wooden bridge over a faux bayou complete with faux Cypress trees to get to the hostess stand. This assumes that you can even get into the building instead of waiting your turn outside on one of the collection of weathered, repurposed church pews. Once inside you will see “Big Al,” the 14-foot alligator once a native of the Louisiana’s Grand Chenier swamp. He now reigns supreme over his brethren , consisting of

acadiana profile Feb/march 2018

taxidermied alligator garfish, catfish and other swamp critters in the middle of the dining room, the backdrop for which is a beautifully rendered mural of Bayou Chene by Cajun artist John Pourcio. The vibe is unapologetically kitschy, no doubt the intention to lure you, the tourist, in. While this ploy may send the uninitiated running elsewhere, fearing an “inauthentic” experience, resist the urge. Real deal, serious Cajun food is to be found here in great abundance. In 1980, with the help of friends, Robert “Biker-Bob” Guilbeau built Prejean’s on a patch of Interstate-side farmland he had inherited from his grandparents, Walter and Inez Prejean. The idea for the area’s first-ever theme restaurant came to him while working in the steam fields

Make sure you try the Alligator Cheesecakesmoked alligator sausage and shrimp with cream cheese

Bonus Bite

Prejean’s is a place that’s probably not so great for a first date but perfect for a memorable time with children or an extended family. Live Cajun music begins nightly at 7 p.m. and continues until about 9 p.m. You will also be serenaded over brunch on Saturday and Sunday mornings from 11 a.m. to 1 p. m, and we’re not talking about noname wedding bands, either. The background music beckoning you to Prejean’s expansive dance floor comes via Woody Daigle and the Cajun Five; Gurvais Matte and the Branch Playboys; The Clarence Denias Band; and Les Freres Michot. All stars in their own right.

Prejean’s Restaurant 3480 NE Evangeline Throughway Lafayette 337-896-3247

of California and visiting Mexican eateries that were much more than restaurants: they captured the complexities of their culture through authentic food, artifacts, decor, traditional live music, dancing and a welcoming relaxed atmosphere. To make his dream a reality Guilbeau started with the comfort food of his youth as they were rendered by his grandparents’ kitchen — boiled shellfish, deep dark gumbos teeming with seafood and game, buttery étouffée and vibrant sauce piquante. He layered on items gathered from garages and dusty area stores, checkered tablecloths, a sweeping dance floor, live music and, ultimately Big Al. n 37

You should have about ½ cup oyster liquor, but if you don’t, add enough water to the liquor to make ½ cup. Garnish each bowl of soup with a sprinkle of freshly grated Parmesan cheese.

for the soup:

food + drink de la cuisine


Oyster and Artichoke Soup

1 Melt 2 tablespoons of butter over medium heat in a saucepan. Add ¾ cup chopped onions, ½ cup chopped green onions and ¾ cup chopped celery and cook, stirring, until soft, 3 to 4 minutes. Add 6 tablespoons butter and allow to melt while stirring.

2 Add 6 tablespoons all-purpose flour and whisk to blend. Slowly add 3 cups warm chicken broth, whisking to blend. The mixture will thicken. Add 2 teaspoons Cajun or Creole seasoning mix, 1 teaspoon hot sauce, ½ teaspoon dried thyme leaves and ¼ teaspoon paprika. (I usually make this in advance to set aside until ready to serve.)

3 Reheat the mixture to allow it to simmer for about 10 minutes. Then add 1 pint shucked Louisiana oysters with their liquor (if possible, you want to have about ½ cup liquor), 1 (14-ounce) can quartered artichoke hearts, and 1 tablespoon chopped parsley. Cook until the oysters curl, 3 to 5 minutes. Serve hot. Makes 6 servings


good catch A Lent-approved Valentine’s Day menu by Marcelle Bienvenu photo & styling by Eugenia Uhl

alentine’s Day this year is the day after Mardi Gras, which is Ash Wednesday (the first day of Lent), declared by the Catholic church as a day of fasting and abstinence. So much for my favorite Valentine’s Day meal — Chateaubriand pour deux — a center cut of beef fillet cooked to medium-rare and drizzled with luscious béarnaise sauce. I scanned my brain for some ideas for a meatless but special menu. Bingo. I recalled the scene in Sheila Bosworth’s 1996 novel “Almost Innocent” where two of the main characters, Rand and Airey, perform a yearly ritual. On Ash Wednesday, they would attend noon mass together at St. Louis Cathedral, have their foreheads crossed with ashes, then go to Antoine’s for a “white lunch” which consisted of “vichyssoise, accompanied by vodka martinis, followed by filet de truite au vin blanc, pommes de terre soufflés, a bottle of Pouilly-Fuissé, and for dessert, Baked Alaska.” Somehow this rite made a great impression on me when I read the book back in the ‘80s, and since then whenever I’m in a dither about what to serve for dinner on a Friday evening during the Lenten season, this menu gives me inspiration. If I’m not in the mood for vichyssoise, oyster and artichoke soup is substituted. Rather than Baked Alaska, I often choose crème brulee. When I can’t get my hands on a bottle of Pouilly-Fuissé, I settle for a Pinot Grigio. That said, this is my chosen menu this year for my husband and me on sweethearts’ day. n


the desser t

Crème Brulée (Burnt Cream) The recipe for the crème brulée (burnt cream) is from my mother. Rather than baking it in individual ramekins, she preferred using a baking dish. While the brulée is under the broiler, watch carefully so that it doesn’t burn.

acadiana profile Feb/march 2018

1 Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Combine 8 egg yolks and ½ cup sugar in a mixing bowl. Beat for 3 to 4 minutes with an electric mixer or until the mixture is thick and pale yellow. Heat 1 quart heavy cream in a saucepan until small bubbles begin to form around the edges. Do not boil. Slowly pour cream into egg mixture, beating constantly. Add 1 tablespoon vanilla extract.

main course

Broiled Trout with Lemon Butter This is as simple as it gets and I believe there is nothing better than perfectly broiled fish. You can use trout or any firm white fish such as red snapper, grouper, red fish, and yes, even a nice fillet of flounder. To clarify the butter, melt it over very low heat until the liquid becomes clear and the solids sink to the bottom of the pan. Carefully skim off the clear liquid and leave any solids in the bottom of the pan. 6 trout (or any firm white fish) fillets , each about 8 ounces

Salt and cayenne, to taste

1 stick butter, melted and clarified 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice 3 tablespoons Lea & Perrins marinade for chicken 1 medium-size yellow onion, peeled and thinly sliced Preheat the broiler. Season the fish with salt and cayenne. Place in a shallow baking dish. Combine the butter, lemon juice, and Lea & Perrins. Pour over the fish. Broil for about 5 to 6 minutes, then turn the fish over with a spatula. Scatter the onion slices evenly over the fish and broil for 3 to 5 minutes longer. Watch carefully so as not to overcook. The fish is done when it flakes easily with a fork. Serve with pan juices. Makes 6 servings

2 Strain mixture through a fine sieve into a baking dish. Place baking dish in a shallow pan. Add boiling water into the second pan until the water comes halfway up the sides of the custard dish. Bake for 45 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove from the oven and cool completely. Refrigerate for two hours.

3 Allow custard to come to room temperature. Set the oven broiler to its highest setting. Evenly sprinkle the top of the custard with ½ cup sugar. Place in the broiler three inches from top for about 4 minutes or until the sugar forms a crust. Let cool and refrigerate for at least two hours before serving. Makes 6 to 8 servings

There will be leftovers of the soup and dessert, which can be served again at another meal. 39

food + drink recettes de cocktails

WHEN SERVING: A single, pale green sage leaf afloat in the cocktail offers a stark color contrast and an aromatic component that finishes each sip with notes of eucalyptus and citrus.

Rum Revival Shake up a sassy spring cocktail with a tart-sweet edge by Lisa LeBlanc-Berry photo by Romero & Romero recipe

Broussard Bracer

1 Muddle 6-10 fresh blackberries (depending on size) in a shaker tin.

2 Add 2 oz. coconut rum, 0.75 oz. blackberry liqueur and 0.5 oz. lime juice and fill tin with ice. Vigorously shake for approximately 30 seconds.

3 Fine strain into a chilled rocks glass filled with ice, preferably crushed. Garnish with a single expressed sage leaf.


s comedian W. C. Fields once said, “All roads lead to rum.” Even at whiskey bars. Mixologist Dominique Dugas of The Barrel, Broussard’s hip whiskey bar, has been churning out some creative craft cocktails spirited with rum. Since opening in 2016, locals have been sampling the 120 different whiskeys and barrel-aged cocktails, a daily roster of Old Fashioned specials (try the pecan praline), specialty wines and local craft beer. “We’re very proud and eager to share our knowledge of whiskey and other spirits with anyone who walks into our bar,” says Dugas. “And while we are known for our whiskey, I wanted to create a cocktail that would showcase the diversity of our interests and talents here at The Barrel. It’s a perfect choice for a warm spring day.”


acadiana profile Feb/march 2018

Popular with bartenders for its versatility, rum is currently experiencing a renaissance, and 2018 could be the year when its consumption rivals whiskey. More rum-focused, tropical-themed bars are popping up, and the tiki craze (with those showy anthropomorphic vessels) is still going strong. Perfect for a Sunday brunch, the refreshing Broussard Bracer has creamy notes of coconut rum, the tartness of lime, a slight whisper of blackberry liqueur, and the earthy aroma of sage. n

The Barrel. 811 Albertson Pkwy., Broussard. 337-330-8039 41

simmering satisfaction Light and flavorful one-pot dishes by Stanley Dry photographs by Eugenia Uhl


acadiana profile Feb/march 2018

Turnips, Turnip Greens and Smoked Turkey Necks Mild white turnips have become the most readily available variety these days, but they don’t pack the flavor of purple tops. Find some purple top turnips for this robust dish. 43


his is the right season for one-pot dishes — those wonderful, homey concoctions that combine disparate flavors into one harmonious whole. Often they simmer for hours on the stove, fogging the windows, filling the warm kitchen with delicious aromas and arousing our appetites. Just as often they are made with no thought to how many calories and how much fat they contain. That doesn’t have to be the case. This month’s recipes are heavy on vegetables, light on added fat and created with an eye toward reducing calories. They provide the same satisfaction and sense of fullness as heavier versions without any loss of flavor. The most down-home of the recipes is the one for turnips and turnip greens, but cooked with smoked turkey necks in place of fatty pork. For some, the best part of the dish is the pot liquor (or “likker”), the liquid that remains at the bottom of the pot and the bowl. It has taken on the flavors of all the ingredients and is the essence of the dish. Some even think it has medicinal properties. The pot liquor can be enjoyed on its own, but traditionally Southerners have combined it with cornbread. Other recipes are less traditional, employing ingredients such as kale, chickpeas, winter squash, rutabagas and edamame. For all the recipes, traditional or not, the actual time spent on preparation or tending the pot is minimal. Cooking times vary, but most of the time the dish simmers away unattended.


acadiana profile Feb/march 2018

Braised Chicken Thighs with Vegetable Hash

Turnips, Turnip Greens and Smoked Turkey Necks

Makes 4 servings

Many people prefer chicken thighs to any other part of the bird because of their flavor. Remove the skin, cut away any visible fat and they are still flavorful, but more healthful. 1 onion, chopped 2 stalks celery, chopped 4 carrots, peeled and sliced 4 parsnips, peeled and sliced 2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled, quartered and sliced 4 chicken thighs

Cajun/Creole seasoning

2 tablespoons olive or vegetable oil 1 cup chicken stock or broth

coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper

¼ cup chopped green onion tops Prepare vegetables, combine in a bowl and set aside. Remove skin from chicken thighs and cut away any visible fat. Season chicken generously with Cajun/ Creole seasoning. Heat oil in heavy casserole and brown chicken thighs on both sides. Add chicken stock or broth. Add vegetables. Bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat and simmer until chicken is cooked through and vegetables are tender, about 40 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Garnish with chopped green onion tops.

Makes 4 servings

We do love our greens in Acadiana and throughout the South. Usually they’re cooked with ham hocks, salt pork or some other form of fatty pork. Smoked turkey necks are a great alternative; the result is so good you won’t miss the fat. 2 pounds smoked turkey necks 4 cups water or chicken stock 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes 1 head garlic 2 bunches turnip greens 2 large purple top turnips

coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper

hot pepper vinegar

cornbread (recipe below)

In a large heavy pot or casserole, combine turkey necks, water or stock and crushed red pepper. Separate garlic cloves and crush each clove with the side of a chef’s knife. Remove skins and add garlic cloves to pot. Bring pot to a boil, cover, reduce heat and simmer until turkey necks are tender, about 2 hours. Chop and wash turnip greens and add to the pot. Peel, quarter and slice turnips. Add to the pot. Cover and simmer until greens and turnips are tender, about 30-45 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve in large, shallow bowls with hot pepper vinegar and cornbread.

Skillet Cornbread Makes 4 or more servings

Place a 12-inch cast-iron skillet in oven and preheat to 450 degrees. Place 1½ cups cornmeal, preferably stone ground, ½ cup flour, 2 teaspoons baking powder, 1 teaspoon salt and 1 teaspoon sugar in mixing bowl and stir to combine. Add 2 eggs (lightly beaten) and 1½ cups milk and stir to combine. Add 4 tablespoons butter to hot skillet. When butter has melted, remove skillet from oven, pour melted butter into batter and stir to combine. Pour batter into hot skillet and return to oven. Bake until cooked through, about 10-12 minutes.

Spicy Kale, Chickpea, Potato and Squash Stew I always washed greens before chopping them until I found that it’s much more efficient to chop them and then wash them. This is not the best procedure for greens that still have dirt or mud clinging to them, but most greens we buy these days have already been rinsed. 45


acadiana profile Feb/march 2018

Beef and Vegetable Soup Other vegetables can be added or substituted, depending on preference and availability. White potatoes, cabbage, corn and frozen green peas are some possibilities. 47

Stir-Fry Shrimp with Onions, Bell Peppers and Garlic For a more healthful dish, serve over quinoa in place of rice.


acadiana profile Feb/march 2018

Spicy Kale, Chickpea, Potato and Squash Stew

Beef and Vegetable Soup Makes 4 servings

1 medium onion, chopped

This version of vegetable soup contains a few ingredients that don’t often make an appearance in the dish — rutabaga and sweet potato, as well as edamame, which are immature soybeans. Shelled and frozen edamame, high in protein, fiber and micronutrients, are available in many supermarkets.

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 pound beef shank, bone-in

5 cups chicken stock or broth

7 cups water

4 cups chopped kale, packed

1 bay leaf

1 (15.5 oz.) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed

1 medium onion, chopped

Makes 4 servings

Talk about nutritious, kale, chickpeas and winter squash are a righteous combination. Chipotle chile pepper provides both spice and smoke to round out the dish. 1 tablespoon olive oil

1 medium potato, peeled and sliced 3 cups butternut squash, cut into ½-inch cubes

1 stalk celery, chopped 1 rutabaga, peeled and cut into small cubes 3 carrots, peeled and sliced

coarse salt and freshly-ground black pepper

1 medium sweet potato, peeled and cut into small cubes

chipotle chile pepper

1 cup diced tomatoes

In a large heavy pot, combine oil, onions and garlic and simmer until softened, about 5 minutes. Add chicken stock or broth. Strip kale from stems, chop and wash to yield 4 packed cups. Add to pot. Drain and rinse chickpeas and add to pot. Peel and slice potato and add to pot. Bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat and simmer until kale is tender, about 30 minutes. Add squash and simmer until squash is tender, about 30 minutes. Season to taste with salt, black pepper and chipotle chile pepper.

1½ cups shelled edamame 1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves

coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper

Combine beef and water in a large pot. Bring to a boil and skim the surface. Cover, reduce heat and simmer until beef is tender, about 1 hour. Remove shanks, trim off fat and gristle, cut meat into small pieces and return to pot. Add all vegetables and simmer until tender. Skim fat from surface. Add thyme and season to taste with salt and pepper.

Stir-Fry Shrimp with Onions, Bell Peppers and Garlic Makes 4 servings

In a wok or large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil on high heat; add 2 large onions (chopped), 1 large red bell pepper (chopped), 1 large yellow bell pepper (chopped) and 4 cloves garlic (minced). Cook, stirring constantly, until vegetables begin to soften, about 2-3 minutes. Add ½ cup dry white wine and 1 pound shrimp (peeled and deveined) and continue cooking, stirring frequently, until shrimp turn pink, about 3-5 minutes, depending on size of shrimp. Season to taste with Cajun/Creole seasoning. 49

Community of the Year Breaux Bridge remains authentically Cajun with a thriving art scene,

innovation and small town charm By William Kalec Photographs by Denny Culbert


The December 2017 viral video of T.M. Landry College Prep student Ayrton Little learning of his acceptance at Harvard is shot in portrait mode. Through the slightly grainy footage, viewers see Little seated inside an old fabrication warehouse that still looks a lot like more like a warehouse than a school. He is eagerly tapping the computer mouse. A few weeks prior to the video, he applied to Harvard. Cut to, the entire student body of this proudly unconventional school — including founders Michael and Tracey Landry — huddled around in nervous anticipation. The video — soon thereafter picked up by CBS News, The Huffington Post, and likely your aunt’s Facebook page — is the worldwide testament to a color-outside-the-lines concept that sprouted more than a decade ago in a town eccentric enough to nurture it. T.M. Landry doesn’t use textbooks. There is no homework, no class schedule, no football team, no Sadie Hawkins dance. But there is a unique and refreshing approach to learning and one that generates results. The school in many ways represents the spirit of Breaux Bridge and what is possible in this unconventional community. Less than 8,500 residents live in Breaux Bridge, yet the underdog town’s duality and its many layers make it a deserving pick as Acadiana Profile’s 2017 Community of the Year. “The whole creative spirit is alive and well in Breaux Bridge,” says Tracey Landry, a Breaux Bridge native. “Neither of us [Michael and Tracey] have a background in education, yet we still decided to try and make a difference. Because the only way to make a difference and change society is to allow hope. And what better way to allow hope than through education? We like being different. We like the title of unorthodox. We embrace those labels.” Commercially, supercenters and other temples of suburbia nestled along Interstate-10 are able to thrive without compromising the charm and authenticity of a bustling downtown void of brand names. Within the same mile, old meets new, as it’s possible to shop for both antiques and a state-of-the-art RV. Like many areas of South Louisiana, Breaux Bridge’s economic health is largely dependent on the ebbs and flows of the energy sector, even though much of its identity is derived from a booming arts and music scene. The everyday mundane — things like getting a cup of coffee or eating breakfast — happen while a live Zydeco band provides the morning soundtrack. In the last decade, Breaux Bridge has become an unlikely magnet for tourists and those looking to permanently relocate from other parts of the country. Still, its heritage and sense of place remain intact. Perhaps no other town in South Louisiana feels more classically Cajun.


acadiana profile Feb/march 2018

Culture and cuisine are hallmarks of Breaux Bridge. At Le Café, those two concepts collided. Located inside an unassuming Cajun cottage on Rees Street, Le Café serves some of the best fried seafood in Acadiana, including its signature shrimp poor boy, making it a must-stop for locals and tourists alike for more than a quartercentury.

“Breaux Bridge has just changed so much,” Michael Landry says. “The people here are thinking more outside the box than when we were younger. In the beginning, there was a natural curiosity about the, ‘Well, what are they doing in that tiny building? How and why are they teaching in a different method?’ And yes, there was some skepticism, but city officials told us to keep going along, and as it continued to grow, people became more enlightened about our process. And now, people from the East Coast and other parts, they wonder, ‘Can this be replicated in other areas?’ “So when they ask, and when they call, we tell them our story that started here. And, of course, we help them when they wonder how to spell, ‘B-R-E-A-U-X.’” Ricky Calais is about as Breaux Bridge as they come, which is convenient since he’s the mayor of this cultural hamlet. His family moved to the community in the mid-1960s, back when Breaux Bridge’s population was less than one-third its current total. Though he lived less than a mile from the downtown/Four Corners area of Breaux Bridge, Calais’ house sat on a gravel road and didn’t receive city sewer service. Breaux Bridge felt a world removed from the much larger city of Lafayette, despite being a quick car ride away. But, times have certainly changed. “The good thing about Breaux Bridge is that over the years, as we’ve grown, we’ve been able to keep our identity,” Calais says. “We have a distinct downtown. We have a business district. Both are vibrant. I’ve referred to Breaux Bridge as a hub. In St. Martin Parish, it’s the hub for culture, for jobs, for commerce.” Like many parts of Acadiana, Breaux Bridge was affected over the past three years because of the slowdown in oil and gas production, but has rebounded nicely in the past 12 months. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, unemployment in St. Martin Parish reached a seven-year high of 8.9 percent in June 2016. As of September 2017 — the latest data entry point available — that number dipped to 6.2 percent, the lowest mark since December 2014 back when the price of oil dipped from $112 to $62 a barrel in the course of a few months. In the past 20 years, Breaux Bridge’s population has swelled by more than 15 percent, according to U.S. Census Bureau statistics, leading the way for major real estate and retail developments. Off the top of his head, Calais referenced two new Breaux Bridge subdivisions currently being constructed that will each contain 70 to 100 homes. Earlier this year, city officials announced plans for further retail expansion near the booming Interstate-10 corridor, as Camping World and Gander Outdoors will open a 65,000 square-foot superstore with construction set to begin in March 2018. The camper, motorhome and outdoors giants will

be located on the north side of the Interstate, across from the Courtesy Ford dealership and the Walmart Supercenter that opened less than a decade ago. While large corporations have come to Breaux Bridge in recent years, town residents continue to invest in and develop the community’s cultural capital, as well. In 2014, fundraising efforts began to construct the Teche Center for the Arts on Bridge Street — a non-profit home for artists, musicians, historical exhibits and children’s camps. Today, the center features regular weekly events and is lauded by patrons for its concert atmosphere and acoustics. That site hugs one of the most quaint and unique downtowns in all of the South Louisiana, one that experienced revitalization in the 1990s and early 2000s but was able to maintain much of its authenticity and Cajun charm. Art boutiques and antique stores provide ample opportunities to buy one-of-a-kind accents to the home, or souvenirs of a trip to Cajun country. The tradition of Saturday morning Zydeco Breakfast continues on at Buck and Johnny’s on Berard Street while coffee and live Cajun music gets customers caffeinated at Joie de Vivre Café on North Main. “Sometimes, what you forget growing up here is that our normal isn’t everyone’s normal,” Calais says. “And it takes those visitors coming in, and experiencing all the wonderful things Breaux Bridge has to offer to remind yourself how special this place really is. The food, the whole alligator fascination, the dancing and the music, the antiques and art.You have Lake Martin five miles south of here with all the bird sanctuaries — and all of this is in a town of less than 10,000. “We see all of this every day, so you take it for granted, but where else are you going to see all that?” Where else but Breaux Bridge are you going to get 35,000 people from all over the world to come together and celebrate a tiny freshwater crustacean? Every year in early May, Breaux Bridge hosts its Crawfish Festival — an explosion of tasty dishes, traditional Southern pageants, cooking demonstrations, plenty of music and space to dance, even a hotly-contested crawfish race. “I think anytime you’re crowned, ‘The Crawfish Capital of the World,’ and you combine that with the Cajun culture, and the music, you’re going to attract people — What’s this place all about?” Calais says. “And that’s where we really shine as a people and town. We’ve benefited from advancements and the infrastructure and interstates, but it hasn’t changed how Breaux Bridge functions as a community. “We’re the same people. We’re the same place — a community with a high quality of life that people want to visit and live in.” 53

Top Doctors 148 Doctors in 37 Specialties profiles by fritz esker and portraits by romero & romero


his survey was conducted by the research firm of Castle Connolly Medical Ltd. The company has issued this statement about its methodology: “Castle Connolly Medical Ltd. is a healthcare research and information company founded in 1991 by a former medical college board chairman and president to help guide consumers to America’s top doctors and top hospitals. Castle Connolly’s established survey and research process, under the direction of an MD, involves tens of thousands of top doctors and the medical leadership of leading hospitals. Castle Connolly’s physician-led team of researchers follows a rigorous screening process to select top doctors on both the national and regional levels. Its online nominations process – located at www. - is open to all licensed physicians in America who are able to nominate physicians in any medical specialty and in any part of the country, as well as indicate whether


acadiana profile Feb/march 2018

the nominated physicians is, in their opinion, among the best in their region in their medical specialty or among the best in the nation in their medical specialty. Careful screening of doctors’ educational and professional experience is essential before final selection is made among those physicians most highly regarded by their peers. The result - we identify the top doctors in America and provide you, the consumer, with detailed information about their education, training and special expertise in our paperback guides, national and regional magazine “Top Doctors” features and online directories. Doctors do not and cannot pay to be selected and profiled as Castle Connolly Top Doctors. Physicians selected for inclusion in this magazine’s “Top Doctors” feature may also appear as Regional Top Doctors online at, or in association with other Castle Connolly Top Doctors digital and/or print products. 55


Allergy & Immunology Jibran Atwi Women’s & Children’s Hospital-Lafayette 401 Youngsville Hwy., Ste. 100 Lafayette 337-330-0031 John Erffmeyer Ochsner Medical CenterBaton Rouge 9001 Summa Ave. Baton Rouge 225-761-5200 Bernard Fruge Jr. Women’s & Children’s Hospital-Lafayette 320 Settlers Trace Blvd. Lafayette 337-981-9495 Bina Joseph Women’s & Children’s Hospital-Lafayette 320 Settlers Trace Blvd. Lafayette 337-981-9495 James Kidd III Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 8017 Picardy Ave. Baton Rouge 225-769-4432 Powlin Manuel Women’s & Children’s Hospital-Lafayette 104 Genevieve Drive Lafayette 337-984-0110 Prem Menon Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 5217 Flanders Drive Baton Rouge 225-766-6931 Joseph Redhead Jr. Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 7373 Perkins Rd. Baton Rouge 225-769-4044 Cardiac Electrophysiology Kenneth Civello Jr. Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 7777 Hennessy Blvd. Medical Plaza II, Ste 1000 Baton Rouge 225-767-3900


acadiana profile Feb/march 2018

N. Joseph Deumite Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 7777 Hennessy Blvd. Medical Plaza II, Ste. 1000 Baton Rouge 225-767-3900 C. Smith Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 7777 Hennessy Blvd. Medical Plaza II, Ste. 1000 Baton Rouge 225-767-3900 Cardiovascular Disease Kevin Courville Our Lady of Lourdes Regional Medical Center - Lafayette 935 Camellia Blvd. Lafayette 337-534-4356 Bart Denys Thibodaux Regional Medical Center 1320 Martin Luther King Drive Thibodaux 985-446-2021 Michael Dibbs The Heart Hospital of Lafayette 121 Rue Louis XIV Bldg. 4, Ste. B Lafayette 337-984-9355 Daniel Fontenot Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 5231 Brittany Drive Baton Rouge 225-769-0933 Steven Gremillion Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 7777 Hennessy Blvd. Medical Plaza II, Ste. 1000 Baton Rouge 225-767-3900 Joseph Kowalski The Heart Hospital of Lafayette 315 Rue Louis XIV Lafayette 337-269-9777 Nakia Newsome Baton Rouge General-Bluebonnet 8888 Summa Ave. Baton Rouge 225-769-0933

John Winterton Lake Charles Memorial Hospital 1717 Oak Park Blvd., Fl. 2 Lake Charles 337-494-3278 Kevin Young Lake Charles Memorial Hospital 1717 Oak Park Blvd., Fl. 2 Lake Charles 337-494-3278 Clinical Genetics Duane Superneau Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 8415 Goodwood Blvd. Ste. 202B Baton Rouge 225-765-8988 Colon & Rectal Surgery Richard Byrd Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 7777 Hennessy Blvd., Ste. 206 Baton Rouge 225-767-1156 Dermatology Mary Dickerson 10154 Jefferson Hwy. Baton Rouge 225-927-5663 Laurie Harrington Lane Regional Medical Center 20474 Old Scenic Hwy. Zachary 225-654-1124 Scott Jackson Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 7373 Perkins Rd. Baton Rouge 225-769-4044 W. Trent Massengale 17503 Old Jefferson Hwy. Prairieville 225-313-4560

Endocrinology, Diabetes & Metabolism Sandra Dempsey 1727 Imperial Blvd. Lake Charles 337-310-3670 Timothy Gilbert Lake Area Medical Center 1727 Imperial Blvd. Lake Charles 337-310-3670 Robin Kilpatrick Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 5428 O’Donovan Drive Baton Rouge 225-300-1076 Joel Silverberg Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 7373 Perkins Rd. Baton Rouge 225-769-4044 Family Medicine Walter Birdsall Jr. St. Charles Parish Hospital 1057 Paul Maillard Rd. Luling 985-785-3740 Donald Brignac Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 5428 O’Donovan Drive Baton Rouge 225-330-0480 Nandita Chadha 140 W. Fourth St. Dequincy 337-786-5007 Karrie Kilgore Acadia General Hospital 345 Odd Fellows Rd. Crowley 337-783-7004

Elizabeth Mcburney 1245 Camellia Blvd., Ste. 300 Lafayette 337-839-2773

Elizabeth McLain Lafayette General Medical Center 1211 Coolidge St., Ste. 404 Lafayette 337-289-8478

Ann Zedlitz 5305 Flanders Drive Baton Rouge 225-778-7540

Patrick Moore 3414 Moss St,. Ste. F Lafayette 337-706-8986 57


Frank “Jay” Culotta More than meets the eye


phthalmology was not Dr. Frank “Jay” Culotta’s first choice when he was studying medicine. He was unsatisfied during a residency in internal medicine when a friend told him how much he was enjoying ophthalmology. Culotta made the switch and has been improving patients’ vision since 1984. The 64-year-old Culotta, a retinologist on staff at multiple hospitals including Our Lady of Lourdes Regional Medical Center, said he appreciates the variety of his work. He gets to perform surgery, but also work on smaller scale issues and diagnose diseases and ailments for his patients. He gets to know people from many different walks of life and there is never a dull moment. Culotta said that several patients have stood out in his mind over the years. One was a man who had a thin branch stuck in his eye. Culotta was able to remove the branch, repair the man’s eye and restore his vision. He has also found it particularly rewarding to restore the vision of several patients who were essentially blind because of retinal detachments due to diabetes. Diabetes can cut off blood supply to blood vessels in the eye. When this happens, the eye has a tendency to overcompensate by creating new blood vessels to replace the ones that have stopped working. But these new blood vessels are fragile. They bleed and they can pull on the retina, causing detachments. In recent years, it has also been gratifying for Culotta to be able to not just halt the process of macular degeneration, but actually improve the vision of his patients with a special injection. Macular degeneration is the leading cause of vision loss in the United States and is caused by the deterioration of the central part of the retina. “We can now restore vision in patients,” said Culotta. “In some cases, we can improve the vision and get it closer to where it was before. We used to only be able to stop additional vision loss.”

When he’s not helping patients, the Lafayette native explores vision in another way: photography. His photography has won awards and has been the subject of numerous exhibitions in the Acadiana area. The interest was passed on to one of his daughters, who works in California as a cinematographer.


acadiana profile Feb/march 2018


Eye Health Dr. Frank “Jay” Culotta shares 3 ways to keep your eyes healthy


Wear sunglasses Everyone, even children and young adults, should wear sunglasses that filter out harmful ultraviolet (UV rays). Not all sunglasses provide UV protection, so it is best to do your research before buying a pair for yourself or your children. “One of the biggest causes of cataracts and macular degeneration is UV sun exposure,” said Dr. Culotta.


PROTECTIVE EYEWEAR Speaking of eyewear, Dr. Culotta also recommends that people wear shatterproof polycarbonate safety glasses when doing any type of hammering, grinding metal, or playing racquet sports. All of those activities commonly cause traumatic injuries and intraocular foreign bodies to enter the eyeball. Both of these problems can have devastating effects on a person’s vision.


EAT Leafy greens Dr. Culotta also advises that you eat plenty of green, leafy vegetables. Raw spinach, kale, and collard greens are great options. These foods contain a lot of vitamin A, which helps fight off macular degeneration. A study by the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary said patients who eat these vegetables have a 43% lower risk of macular degeneration than those who don’t. 59


Arthur Primeaux Lake Charles Memorial Hospital 771 Bayou Pines Drive E Lake Charles 337-433-1212 Paul Stringfellow Acadia General Hospital 345 Odd Fellows Rd. Crowley 337-783-7004 Gastroenterology Stephen Abshire Lafayette General Medical Center 1211 Coolidge Blvd., Ste. 303 Lafayette 337-232-6697 Irfan Alam Lafayette General Southwest 4212 W. Congress St. Ste. 2400 E Lafayette 337-984-4350 Charles Berggreen Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 9103 Jefferson Hwy. Baton Rouge 225-927-1190 Richard Broussard Lafayette General Medical Center 439 Heymann Blvd. Lafayette 337-269-0963 David Pellegrin Terrebonne General Medical Center 8120 Main St, Ste 200 Houma 985-851-5206 Douglas Walsh Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 9103 Jefferson Hwy Baton Rouge 225-927-1190 Nathaniel Winstead Terrebonne General Medical Center 1023 Wood St. Houma 985-601-2662 Gynecologic Oncology Milton Fort III Woman’s Hospital 500 Rue de la Vie, Ste. 407 Baton Rouge 225-216-3006


acadiana profile Feb/march 2018

Hand Surgery Rasheed Ahmad Baton Rouge General Medical Center 8080 Bluebonnet Blvd. Ste. 1000 Baton Rouge 225-924-2424 Michael Robichaux Baton Rouge General Medical Center 8080 Bluebonnet Blvd. Ste. 1000 Baton Rouge 225-924-2424

Katherine Pearce Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 5131 O’Donovan Drive, Ste. 201 Baton Rouge 225-374-0220 Karen Smith Lafayette General Medical Center 461 Heymann Blvd. Lafayette 337-289-8646 Interventional Cardiology

Nephrology Raynold Corona Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 5131 O’Donovan Drive, Ste. 100 Baton Rouge 225-767-4893 Mitchell Hebert Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 5131 O’Donovan Drive, Ste. 100 Baton Rouge 225-767-4893 Neurological Surgery

Peter Fail Terrebonne General Medical Center 225 Dunn St. Houma 985-876-0300

Alan Appley Lafayette General Medical Center 155 Hospital Drive, Ste. 100 Lafayette 337-235-7743

Leo Blaize III Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 7777 Hennessy Blvd., Ste. 7000 Baton Rouge 225-765-8829

Andrew Rees Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 7777 Hennessy Blvd. Medical Plaza II, Ste. 1000 Baton Rouge 225-767-3900

Kevin Callerame Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 5247 Didesse Drive Baton Rouge 225-215-2193

Brian Clements Lake Charles Memorial Hospital 2770 3rd Ave, Ste 350 Lake Charles 337-494-6800

Christopher Thompson Lake Charles Memorial Hospital 1717 Oak Park Blvd. Fl. 2 Lake Charles 337-494-3278

Gerard Dynes Jr. Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 7373 Perkins Rd. Baton Rouge 225-769-4044

C. Ray Halliburton Jr. Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 7777 Hennessy Blvd., Ste. 7000 Baton Rouge 225-765-8829

Maternal & Fetal Medicine

Obstetrics & Gynecology

Paul Dibbs Women’s & Children’s Hospital-Lafayette 105 Corporate Blvd. Lafayette 337-593-9099

Randall Brown Woman’s Hospital 500 Rue de la Vie, Ste. 100 Baton Rouge 225-201-2000

Internal Medicine Michael Alexander Lafayette General Medical Center 461 Heymann Blvd. Lafayette 337-289-8717

Susan Ieyoub Lake Charles Memorial Hospital 2770 3rd Ave., Ste. 350 Lake Charles 337-494-6800

Medical Oncology

Bryan LeBean Sr. Our Lady of Lourdes Regional Medical Center - Lafayette 2930 Moss St., Ste. B Lafayette 337-261-0559

Bryan Bienvenu Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 4950 Essen Lane Baton Rouge 225-767-1311

Bradley Meek Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 8119 Picardy Ave. Baton Rouge 225-214-3638

B.J. Brooks Jr. Ochsner Medical CenterBaton Rouge 9001 Summa Ave. Baton Rouge 225-761-5200


Francis Cardinale Women’s & Children’s Hospital-Lafayette 4640 Ambassador Caffery Pkwy. Lafayette 337-984-1050 Edward Darby West Calcasieu Cameron Hospital 1200 Stelly Lane Sulphur 337-312-1000 Bradley Forsyth Lake Charles Memorial Hospital 1890 W Gauthier Rd., Ste. 140 Lake Charles 337-480-5570 61


Bart Denys Healing hearts and helping enforce the law


or many patients, the first symptom of heart disease is sudden death. According to the Centers for Disease Control, about 610,000 Americans die of heart disease every year (1 in every 4 deaths). That’s why it’s so rewarding when doctors are able to save the lives of patients with heart issues. Bart Denys, MD and medical director of the Cardiovascular Institute of the South at Thibodaux, has been helping heal hearts since 1982. Like many things in life, saving a patient is a mixture of skill and luck. The two were intertwined for a recent patient of Denys. The patient was a 50-year-old woman who had no risk factors for heart disease. She didn’t smoke, she wasn’t overweight and in general appeared to be the picture of good health. But she’d been suffering from chest pains, and they would not go away. The woman made an appointment to see Denys. During their appointment, she had a heart attack and he had to rush her to the emergency room. In a freak occurrence, the woman had a tear in an artery that was obstructing blood flow to the heart. Her blood pressure dropped rapidly and her heart stopped. The tear made it more challenging than usual to place the stent. But Denys was able to install it in the nick of time and he saved the woman’s life. “It was a matter of sixty seconds between life and death,” said Denys. Patients who experience a tear in the artery of the heart often do nothing to bring about the tear. They are people like Denys’ patient, seemingly healthy with some chest pains that are written off as stress, indigestion, or something else. And then they die suddenly. Denys’ patient was incredibly lucky to have her heart attack while she was visiting him. If she’d had it anywhere else, she would have died. Not all heart attacks result in sudden death. Some of them give patients a little more warning, but the symptoms can be deceptive. Denys warns that heart attack symptoms can be as simple as a little shortness of breath and chest pains that can be mistaken for indigestion or heartburn. Patients should always have a “better safe than sorry” approach to heart health. They should not be embarrassed if they visit a doctor with these symptoms and are told that it’s only something minor.

The 61-year-old Dr. Denys was born in Bruges, Belgium and has been in Thibodaux since 1994. He doesn’t just carry a stethoscope in Thibodaux; he carries a badge, too. He has a great respect for law enforcement and is a commissioned sheriff’s deputy.


acadiana profile Feb/march 2018


Heart Health Dr. Bart Denys shares 3 ways to keep your heart healthy


quit smoking Denys said one of the most controllable ways to stop heart disease is to quit smoking. Smoking doesn’t just damage the lungs; it also dramatically increases a patient’s chance for heart disease. Smoking increases blood pressure, decreases a person’s ability to tolerate exercise, and increases the likelihood of blood clotting. It all adds up to a greater risk for heart attacks.


maintain a healthy weight Another controllable risk factor for heart disease is weight. Maintaining a healthy weight can keep a patient’s blood pressure in check. Stomach fat is linked to high blood sugar, increased blood pressure, and higher levels of triglycerides (fat found in the blood). “Looking good is in the gym. Losing weight is in the kitchen,” said Denys.


regular doctor visits Some risk factors cannot be controlled, like age and a family history of heart disease. Denys recommends people visit a doctor at age 40 to get a checkup. Even if you seemingly have no risk factors, it’s good to see where your blood pressure and cholesterol levels are.“It’s better for me to find [heart disease] before it finds you,” said Denys. 63


J. William Groves Jr. Lake Charles Memorial Hospital 1890 W Gauthier Rd., Ste. 130 Lake Charles 337-480-5530

M. Alan Hinton Lake Area Medical Center 230 W Sale Rd. Lake Charles 337-477-5252

Phillip Noel Abbeville General Hospital 100 Phoenix Abbeville 337-898-3700

Ann Marie Lafranca Woman’s Hospital 500 Rue de la Vie, Ste. 210 Baton Rouge 225-928-5951

Thomas Montgomery Our Lady of Lourdes Regional Medical Center - Lafayette 1301 Camellia Blvd., Ste. 102 Lafayette 337-235-2264

Daniel Nuss Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 4950 Essen Lane, Ste. 400 Baton Rouge 225-765-1765


David Pope 7301 Hennessy Blvd., Ste. 200 Baton Rouge 225-766-0050

Frank Culotta Jr. Lafayette General Medical Center 1101 S College Rd., Ste. 304 Lafayette 337-232-2710 Donald Falgoust CHRISTUS St. Patrick Hospital 1980 Tybee Lane Lake Charles 337-477-0963 Thomas Heigle Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 7777 Hennessy Blvd., Ste. 4000 Baton Rouge 225-766-7441 Jonathan Joseph 609 Guilbeau Rd. Lafayette 337-981-6430 Orthopaedic Surgery Joseph Broyles Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 7301 Hennessy Blvd., Ste. 200 Baton Rouge 225-766-0050

Catherine Riche Baton Rouge General Medical Center 8080 Bluebonnet Blvd., Ste. 1000 Baton Rouge 225-924-2424 Matthew Williams Our Lady of Lourdes Regional Medical Center - Lafayette 108 Rue Louis XIV Lafayette 337-235-8007 Otolaryngology John Alldredge Our Lady of Lourdes Regional Medical Center - Lafayette 225 Bendel Rd. Lafayette 337-232-2330 Moises Arriaga Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 7777 Hennessy Blvd., Ste. 709 Baton Rouge 225-765-7735

Pain Medicine

Jamar Melton Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 7373 Perkins Rd. Baton Rouge 225-763-4888

Jimmy Ponder Jr. Terrebonne General Medical Center 123 Frontage Road-A Gray 985-580-1200

Henry Peltier Thibodaux Regional Medical Center 604 N Acadia Rd, Ste 200 Thibodaux 985-448-3700

Pediatric Allergy & Immunology Theron McCormick Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 7777 Hennessy Blvd., Ste. 408 Baton Rouge 225-765-6834 Pediatric Gastroenterology Patrice Tyson Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 7777 Hennessy Blvd. Plaza 1, Ste. 502 Baton Rouge 225-765-6834 Pediatrics

Geoffrey Collins West Calcasieu Cameron Hospital 1625 Wolf Circle Lake Charles 337-905-7100

James Broussard Thibodaux Regional Medical Center 604 N Acadia Rd., Ste. 101 Thibodaux 985-446-5079

Jennifer Boustany Women’s & Children’s Hospital-Lafayette 4630 Ambassador Caffery Pkwy, Ste 102 Lafayette 337-989-2322

Henry Eiserloh III Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 8080 Bluebonnet Blvd., Ste. 1000 Baton Rouge 225-924-2424

Maria Doucet Women’s & Children’s Hospital-Lafayette 4630 Ambassador Caffery Pkwy. A Bldg., Ste. 402 Lafayette 337-989-4453

Robert Drumm Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 7373 Perkins Rd. Baton Rouge 225-769-4044

R. Bryan Griffith Jr. Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 8080 Bluebonnet Blvd, Ste 1000 Baton Rouge 225-924-2424

J. Kevin Duplechain Lafayette General Medical Center 1103 Kaliste Saloom Rd. Ste. 300 Lafayette 337-326-5158

Jennifer Hogan Ochsner Medical CenterBaton Rouge 9001 Summa Ave. Baton Rouge 225-761-5200


acadiana profile Feb/march 2018

Michael Judice Women’s & Children’s Hospital-Lafayette 4630 Ambassador Caffery Pkwy, Ste 102 Lafayette 337-989-2322

Edward Sledge Jr. Ochsner Medical Center-Baton Rouge 9001 Summa Ave. Baton Rouge 225-761-5200 Mark Waggenspack Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 7373 Perkins Rd. Baton Rouge 225-769-4044 Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation Gregory Ward Baton Rouge GeneralBluebonnet 10627 Hillary Court Baton Rouge 225-766-1616 Plastic Surgery Michael Hanemann Jr. Baton Rouge General Medical Center 5233 Dijon Drive Baton Rouge 225-766-2166 Kenneth Odinet Jr. Our Lady of Lourdes Regional Medical Center - Lafayette 200 Beaullieu Drive, Ste 6 Lafayette 337-234-8648 E. Clyde Smoot III Lake Charles Memorial Hospital 4150 Nelson Rd A-2 Bldg Lake Charles 337-478-5577 65


Farjaad Siddiq Preserving quality of life with technology


rostate cancer is one of the most common cancers in men, affecting more than 3 million Americans per year. While not as common as prostate cancer, the incidences of kidney cancer are also growing in the United States and it is one of the 10 most common cancers in both American men and women. Farjaad Siddiq, MD and urologist affiliated with multiple Lake Charles hospitals including Christus St. Patrick Hospital, helps his patients fight their battles against prostate and kidney cancer, as well as various kidney ailments. The 44-year-old Siddiq was recruited to practice medicine in Lake Charles, and he has been doing so for 13 years. His work allows Lake Charles residents to receive top-notch urology care without the added stress of traveling. “It’s home and I feel Iike I’m able to help a lot of people who would otherwise have to go elsewhere,” said Siddiq. Siddiq has treated many patients with prostate and kidney cancer over the years. He does not have a single one that stands out more than others, but he said that every case has been rewarding as he works with his patients to restore their health. He said recent advances in laparoscopic and robotic surgery technology have made things easier for prostate and kidney cancer patients. The new technology allows him to be much more precise in operating on patients, which makes for smaller incisions, less post-op pain, less downtime, and better results. Many patients are not just concerned about surviving, but being able to control their bladder and have erections after surgery. “With prostate cancer, a lot of it has to do with not just curing their cancer, but preserving their quality of life after surgery,” said Siddiq. But it isn’t just cancer that Siddiq treats — he also treats patients suffering from kidney stones, which are tiny mineral crystals that stick together in a person’s urine. As anyone who has ever had a kidney stone can tell you, it is a particularly painful ailment and one patients are always eager to get rid of. Siddiq said Louisiana is considered to be part of “the stone belt” because kidney stones are so common in the Southeastern United States.

Dr. Siddiq is a native of Providence, Rhode Island. When he is not helping his patients, Dr. Siddiq enjoys spending time with his two daughters, ages nine and six. He is also a car enthusiast and enjoys traveling with his children.


acadiana profile Feb/march 2018


Kidney and Prostate Health Dr. Farjaad Sidiq shares 3 ways to keep your kidneys and prostate healthy


maintain a healthy diet To prevent prostate cancer, Siddiq says the strategies are very similar to those recommended for cardiac health. Eating a lot of red meat can increase your risk for prostate cancer, so it is best to eat meat in moderation and eat lots of fruits and vegetables.


quit smoking Guidelines for preventing kidney cancer are also similar. Managing blood pressure can improve your kidney health. If there already weren’t enough reasons to stop smoking, here’s another one: quitting smoking will help prevent kidney cancer. It’s well known that smoking contributes to many diseases, most infamously lung cancer. But the risk of kidney cancer also increases with smoking.


stay hydrated Kidney stones are prevalent in Louisiana. Siddiq says a big reason why is simple: kidney stones are typically caused by dehydration and the heat and humidity here make people more prone to becoming dehydrated. Always drink plenty of water, even if you’re not thirsty. “The key to kidney stone prevention is hydrate, hydrate, hydrate,” said Siddiq. 67


Taylor Theunissen Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 5233 Dijon Drive Baton Rouge 225-424-1470 James Wade II Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 5233 Dijon Drive Baton Rouge 225-769-9966 Psychiatry Renee Bruno Woman’s Hospital 7470 Highland Rd. Baton Rouge 225-615-8102 Gerald Heintz Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 7777 Hennessy Blvd. Baton Rouge 225-765-8648 Charles Reveley 4004 W Airline Hwy Reserve 985-479-6770 Pulmonary Disease Glenn Gomes Ochsner Medical CenterBaton Rouge 9001 Summa Ave. Baton Rouge 225-761-5200 G. Gary Guidry Lafayette General Medical Center 155 Hospital Drive, Ste 101 Lafayette 337-234-3204 Mark Hodges 7373 Perkins Rd. Baton Rouge 225-769-4044 Gary Kohler Lake Charles Memorial Hospital 2770 3rd Ave, Ste 110 Lake Charles 337-494-2750 Reproductive Endocrinology Susan Conway Women’s & Children’s Hospital-Lafayette 206 E. Farrel Rd. Lafayette 337-989-8795


acadiana profile Feb/march 2018

John Storment Women’s & Children’s Hospital-Lafayette 206 E. Farrel Rd. Lafayette 337-989-8795

Mark Hausmann Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 7777 Hennessy Blvd., Ste. 612 Baton Rouge 225-769-5656

Kenneth Blue III Baton Rouge General Medical Center 8080 Bluebonnet Blvd. Ste. 3000 Baton Rouge 225-766-8100


Henry Kaufman IV Our Lady of Lourdes Regional Medical Center - Lafayette 457 Heymann Blvd. Lafayette 337-237-5774

Thad Bourque Lafayette General Medical Center 1103 Kaliste Saloom Rd. Ste. 200L Lafayette 337-988-1803

Richard Shimer Lake Charles Memorial Hospital 2770 3rd Ave., Ste. 120 Lake Charles 337-494-4868

Christopher Fontenot Lafayette General Medical Center 200 Beaullieu Drive, Bldg. 7 Lafayette 337-232-4555

Stephen Lindsey Ochsner Medical CenterBaton Rouge 9001 Summa Ave. Baton Rouge 225-761-5481 James Lipstate Lafayette General Medical Center 401 Audubon Blvd., Ste. 102B Lafayette 337-237-7801 Jennifer Malin Lafayette General Medical Center 401 Audubon Blvd., Ste. 102B Lafayette 337-237-7801 John Marshall Woman’s Hospital 7373 Perkins Rd. Baton Rouge 225-246-9751 Sean Shannon Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 7777 Hennessy Blvd., Ste. 501 Baton Rouge 225-765-6505 Sleep Medicine Matthew Abraham Our Lady of Lourdes Regional Medical Center - Lafayette 100 Asma Blvd., Bldg. 1, Ste. 205 Lafayette 337-470-3475 Surgery

Thoracic & Cardiac Surgery C. Swayze Rigby Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 7777 Hennessy Blvd., Ste. 1008 Baton Rouge 225-766-0416

James Jancuska Lake Area Medical Center 234 Dr. Michael DeBakey Drive Lake Charles 337-439-8857 Scott Neusetzer Lafayette General Medical Center 1016 Coolidge Blvd. Lafayette 337-233-6665

Urogynecology/ Female Pelvic Med & Reconstruct Surgery

William Roth Lafayette General Medical Center 1000 W Pinhook Rd, Ste 304 Lafayette 337-289-9155

Phillip Barksdale Woman’s Hospital 500 Rue de la Vie, Ste. 511 Baton Rouge 225-752-3000

Farjaad Siddiq Lake Area Medical Center 234 Dr. Michael Debakey Drive Lake Charles 337-439-8857

William Kubricht III Baton Rouge General Medical Center 8080 Bluebonnet Blvd. Ste. 3000 Baton Rouge 225-766-8100

Vascular Surgery


P. Michael Davis Jr. Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 7777 Hennessy Blvd., Ste. 1008 Baton Rouge 225-766-0416

Daniel Carroll Lafayette General Medical Center 1000 W Pinhook Rd., Ste. 310 Lafayette 337-233-9900

Angelo Annaloro Jr. Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 7777 Hennessy Blvd., Ste. 2004 Baton Rouge 225-769-2500

Michael Hailey Woman’s Hospital 500 Rue de la Vie, Ste. 201 Baton Rouge 225-751-2778

David Benson Iberia Medical Center 500 N Lewis St., Ste. 270 New Iberia 337-352-2210

Michael Conners III Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center 7777 Hennessy Ave., Ste. 1008 Baton Rouge 225-766-0416

Andrew Olinde Baton Rouge General Medical Center 8888 Summa Ave., 3rd Floor Baton Rouge 844-747-3702 69

culture joie de vivre

les artistes

Then, Now and Every Place In Between Former UL professor Lynda Frese takes a 40-year look in the rearview mirror, while also looking ahead by Will Kalec portrait by Romero & Romero

Paintings spanning the course of Lynda Frese’s four-decade career as an artist will be exhibited in the Paul and Lulu Hilliard Museum, on the campus of the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, from Feb. 17-May 19, 2018. The exhibit is called, Holy Memories & Earthly Delights.

LIKE A ROLLING STONE: Frese developed a series of pieces called, “The Singer” in which she incorporated images of Bob Dylan. Of the series, Frese wrote, “The Singer is an intimate response, a picture about yearning and desire, obsession and fantasy, solace and bliss.”

culture les artistes


Lynda Frese: Holy Memories & Earthly Delights

Feb. 17-May 19

Paul and Lulu Hilliard University Museum of Art. 710 East St. Mary Blvd., Lafayette.

Lynda Frese: Holy Memories & Earthly Delights includes works from 1978 to 2018, and is divided into eight categories that explore recurring visual themes. For example, nine pieces examine her longstanding interest in vessels and pottery, while another sixteen works are rooted in Jungian notions of the subconscious. The show features early formal experiments created in the darkroom, as well as collages and later mixedmedia artworks that incorporate egg tempera and organic elements such as plants and insect parts. The photographs on display range in technique from digital composites to silver-gelatin processes that incorporate a variety of toners affecting color including copper, selenium and vanadium.



fter decades of splitting time between passion and a profession, Lynda Frese’s artistic process flows without interruption. That means more hours are spent in the studio. More hours are spent traveling. More hours are spent reading. There’s time to ponder, time to reflect, time to pause. Inspiration no longer has to fit between semesters and syllabi. An accomplished and beloved art professor at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette for 30 years, Frese retired after the 2016 academic year, and in doing so, rediscovered the artist she once was and the artist she always wanted to be.

acadiana profile Feb/march 2018

“Sometimes, I feel like I’m living the dream that I had when I was 10 years old when I thought, ‘Oh, I’d really love to be an artist,” she says. “What’s it gonna be like to have an artist’s life?’ So in a way, this is coming back to the original dream….I’ve enjoyed exploring the notion of having a different identity. Because when you’re a teacher, so much of who you are is being a teacher. So you have to deconstruct that, and build a different idea of who you are. “I feel very grateful for the opportunity to teach at the university, but now this is a new chapter that’s happening before I get too ancient. It’s been nice to turn the page.” 73


acadiana profile Feb/march 2018

But, as Frese admits, it’s also been a joy and an honor to thumb back a few pages, as well — a privilege afforded to her while putting together the particulars of her upcoming exhibit, “Lynda Frese: Holy Memories & Earthly Delights” at the UL Hilliard Museum. The 60-piece showing — which took several years to finalize — is comprised of art from 1978 to 2018, half of which come from Frese’s pre-Louisiana days spent as a budding photographer and artist in Northern California known for her mixed-media collages on silver-gelatin paper. The rest are a mix of pieces completed during Frese’s tenure at the university and the infant stages of retirement. “It’s interesting to go back and forth — from the old to the new,” Frese says. “You look at some of my early gelatin-silver work, those pieces are made with materials that aren’t even manufactured anymore. The processes are obsolete. You couldn’t do that on the paper they manufacture today.” While Frese is the lone artist featured in the exhibit, curator Laura Blereau was the brain trust behind the display. Blereau was introduced to Frese through Hilliard director LouAnne Greenwald, and instantly became intrigued by Frese’s story and work. Spending hours together at Frese’s studio, the artist and curator found a way to link the old pieces with the new. More specifically, Blereau took notice of Frese’s unique “figure-ground relationship” — how the focal point to many of her pieces (both then and now) isn’t a person or an object, but rather the world around them. “[Blereau] felt that those early works held a sort of key to what I was doing now in a contemporary sense,” Frese says. “I didn’t really understand what she was saying. Artists are never good judges or editors of their own work, so I didn’t really get it. But she explained the connection — the figure-ground relationship. “A lot of people focus attention on the figure, pick the figure, and then fill in the ground, or pick the ground, around that central figure. It’s a very formalist way to approach art. I kind of inverted that process — the ground or the environment around the figure has as much, if not

more, importance than the figure itself. Or sometimes, the figure will just melt into that landscape and Laura noticed that.” Blereau also found ways to arrange the exhibit other than hanging pieces in chronological order. While sitting with the artist and privy to her entire catalog of work, Blereau commented on different, yet reoccurring themes in Frese’s pieces. For instance, Blereau pointed out that some of Frese’s art from different eras contained some sort of vessel as a focal point — a realization Frese never spotted through the years. “It’s an emotional process for an artist to look back at the work that you’ve built a career with,” Frese says. “Of course, my work has been very personal. So it was enjoyable to go back, look at it again, with different eyes and in a different place in life, to see what I never saw before.” n

The past year has been Frese’s Second Act as an artist. In 2016, she retired from her job as an art professor at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, allowing her more time to focus solely on her pieces. 75

The Sarcotics describe themselves as “a bunch of dads who have been woodshedding for a long time and love getting to play loud music.”

culture le musique

music calendar

Catch These Acts in February and March

Out of the Shed Super group Sarcotics brings forceful sounds to Lafayette by Michael Patrick Welch portrait by Romero & Romero

1 Wilfredo Lopez Fri., Feb. 2

Modern day Acadiana seems as musically diverse as it is rich: This young singer expresses his passionate feelings in both Spanish and English; this time, at El Paso Mexican Grill’s Ambassador Caffery location. 3910 Ambassador Caffery Parkway. Lafayette. 337-524-1824

2 Cajun Jam Wed., Feb. 7

That star on stage is you at the Blue Moon Saloon’s regular Cajun Jam night, where you’ll rub shoulders (and fiddle bows) with the more established Cajun music stars who frequent this getdown. 215 E Convent St. Lafayette. 337-234-2422

3 Lee Benoit Fri., March 9

This accordion player and member of the Benoit Family Cajun dance band busts away to play solo at club Pont Breaux each and every single Friday from here to eternity. 325 W Mills Ave. Breaux Bridge. 337-332-4648



ike the sound of tree falling in the woods, Louisiana music generally needs a crowd in order to exist. What is music when no one is around to dance to it? But for the last four years, the members of offbeat Lafayette guitar rock band, Sarcotics, played music exclusively for each other. They’ve only recently begun sharing their work with the world. “We really enjoy just getting together and hearing the sounds we can make, and challenging each other in the room,” says singer and guitarist Ronnie Chauvin, who for many years fronted the band Frigg A-Go-Go. He now “plants the seeds” for most of Sarcotics’ forceful, howling rock n’ roll songs. Chauvin says he has two reasons for keeping the new band in the shed for so long. The first was that he wanted to focus not on self-promotion and playing gigs, but strictly on building, “a mountain of sound so high that we can see the future from the top of it.” The second reason Sarcotics have stayed off of stage, says Chauvin: “I just got tired with all the baloney involved with [booking gigs].” A Louisiana/Alabama supergroup of sorts — featuring members of Frigg plus Gulf Coast bands the Quadrajets and Rare Avis — Sarcotics know full well the toil that traditionally goes into making a functioning band — and they want none of it. “We are all familiar with playing shows and touring to promote ourselves,” says Chauvin, sounding exhausted by the mere idea of it. Where so much Louisiana music aims to please those who paid the door charge, Chauvin says, “Playing music is not necessarily for other people, it’s for something you have inside yourself. We are more interested in just exploring the sonic possibilities between us.” Sarcotics bassist John “Pudd” Sharp, originally from Alabama, describes his newest band as having, “punk rock ideas.” He cops to the band members’ shared loved of the proto angular (or, jagged and sharp, rather than smooth style) guitar rock band, Television. “Television was a bunch of people doing some exploration, instead of just the blues thing that rock n’ roll is usually about,” says Pudd. “Everything else was on the table, and that’s similar to our approach.” But Sarcotics possess a higher level of dynamics than most bands of their ilk, switching effortlessly from upbeat hard rock (but with no guitar distortion), to some strange strain of R&B. “I wouldn’t say our delivery is angry — forceful might be a good way to put it,” says Pudd. “But then we like to

acadiana profile Feb/march 2018

play different kinds of music, so it will go from a lullaby — we literally wrote a lullaby, with words Ronnie’s daughter told him when she was going to sleep one night — to songs that are a lot more outraged.” Much of that dynamic is fueled by Chauvin, whose onstage persona, as Pudd describes it, is, “In your face. Very energetic. His real personality is surprisingly laid back but he’s intense onstage. It’s like he’s two different people.” Chauvin, who grew up in Lafayette, remembers when the city’s music scene harbored no bands like Sarcotics. “When I was young going to see music, it was in clubs in like, Breaux Bridge, and all the lyrics were in French — Sunny Landsite on stage in front, and guys playing Bourré in the back,” says Chauvin. “Grant Street had shows that were pretty cool, but before the downtown streetscape…it wasn’t a very hot area to be in. Then they had a club on Jefferson, called Metropolis,” he says, remembering the club where Lafayette rock bands cut their teeth in the ‘90s. “Metropolis brought in a lot of touring acts, as they were going between [New Orleans] and Houston, and that brought local kids access to bands they wouldn’t have otherwise seen.” This year, Sickbay Records accidentally turned Sarcotics into a real band, by asking the group to record some songs for a new compilation album. “All we had were these jams we’d be playing for years,” says Pudd. “And that Sickbay compilation was the reason we turned our jams into actual songs. We needed to do some editing and distill all our material into something that could be placed onto a tape — or, a hard drive or whatever people do these days.” The aforementioned compilation got the band two Lafayette shows, one for crowds at Jefferson Street Pub this past September, the latter this year at the eclectic café Artmosphere. Though born in the new millennium, Sarcotics are sort of a throwback to the ‘90s Gulfcoast scene. As they make their live debut, they find themselves in a new world where odd but soulful rock bands like themselves are not cordoned off from the rest of the music scene. But that doesn’t mean Sarcotics is ready to take up the schedule of a regular band. “This is what we do instead of play cards,” says Pudd. “We’re a bunch of dads who’ve been woodshedding for a long time and love getting to play loud music. We’ve been enjoying family life.” n 77

culture les personnes


Colby Hebert 1 So, are you like Frosty The Snowman? Do you only come to life when you have your hat on? It’s funny you mention Frosty, because when I’m without my hat, people ask, ‘Where’s the hat?’ But it is a part of who I am, an extension of who I am. And that’s what I try to do with my customers — build a hat that becomes a part of them.

2 Did you set up this hat business by accident? I don’t know if this was as accidental as it was organic. Because everything that contributed to the formation of the business was there all along, it just needed to come together. All of the places and things and experiences that I had, they were just finally utilized in this manner.

3 Your hats have a double sense of identity — not just with the buyer, but with the area — why is that? Everything that I can do to display and express the story of the Cajun culture, I do. I’ll speak with visitors in the shops about it for hours, if they’ll listen. Or I’ll take them home and cook them a gumbo.


“The hat we customize for you shouldn’t feel like this big thing on top of your head. It shouldn’t feel foreign — oh look at this guy with the hat on his head. It should be, ‘Oh yeah, there’s Tim.’ It fits right in.”

WEAR Y’HAT New Iberia’s Colby Hebert combines a love of performing, costumes and culture to fit perfectly atop your head by Will Kalec portrait by Romero & Romero


eated at a desk passed down from his grandmother, custom hatmaker Colby Hebert speaks of an antiquated craft he’s help resuscitate using techniques borrowed from the 19th century. Odes to the past dot his storefront. Everything in here has a story, a purpose and a history. His hats do, as well. A reflection of Acadiana, and its ancestors, prideful yet painful past, each hat features eloquent craftsmanship and design, but also is purposely aged and distressed. “The hats have life, they got some soul, some history and some experience and some age,” Hebert says. “Not only am I trying to bring hats back. Not only am I trying to do it in the South, because why the hell would I do it in [Los Angeles], or New York, or Miami when I’m so passionate about my culture? But I’m also trying to tell the story of this area and the people.” And the inspiration for all this? Hebert watched a few YouTube videos. Therein lies the delightful yin and yang of Hebert, a 27-year-old actor, set costumer and hatmaker who talks like a throwback to an earlier age, but still throws the word “like” into casual conversation. In the summer of 2016, Hebert became New Iberia’s first custom hatmaker in a century when he set up shop just off Main Street. Now based in New Orleans, Hebert has sold hundreds of hats, each designed to feel like a personal extension of the buyer rather than a fashion accessory. To Hebert, your friends’ reaction to you showing up without a hat should be the same as if you showed up missing a hand — it’s a part of you. Raised by parents with a sense of style, Hebert was always fascinated with characters and costumes. Therefore, to the surprise of no one, Hebert gravitated toward Louisiana’s budding film industry earlier this decade and fully immersed himself in the eye of “Hollywood South.” “You know, the passion for costumes and dressing up never went away, but doing that as an adult, people will think you’re crazy,” he says. “But they don’t think you’re crazy if you make a career out of it — so that’s what I did.” After volunteering without pay for a friend as a costumer for a film in 2015, Hebert found paid gigs under the same title eight times with the next year, including a made-forTV movie on Lifetime and the film “Strange Weather” starring Holly Hunter. Hebert had a knack for the work,

acadiana profile Feb/march 2018

confirmation of that coming from peers and the fact that he kept finding jobs. “Hats have always appealed to me,” Hebert says. “Even as a young kid, hats were a way to stand out from the crowd, to be different … and as I started wearing hats on set, I developed a reputation for it. I got known for the hats. And I enjoyed being a performer, but to me there was something almost Old World about having a craft. It was appealing, freeing. And I started to think, maybe I could do both — acting and have a craft.” There was just one problem — Hebert had no clue how to make a hat. But, being an actor who prides himself into immersing himself into the characters he portrays, Hebert knows how to dig for information. So that’s what he did. He even read articles about hat making from old Italian newspapers. After about nine to 10 months of learning second-hand, Hebert sought face-to-face help — kind of a master-apprentice situation. Much like magicians, though, hatmakers aren’t quick to give up their tricks. Still, Hebert was persistent, and phoned 79-year-old Jim Whittington — a talented hatmaker from Utah who uses devices from the mid-1800s when the Mormons were first settling the area — and asked him about equipment. “He told me, ‘Well, you obviously don’t know what the hell you’re talking about. The best thing you ought to do with your money is buy a plane ticket and come out and see me.’ And I was startled, but I was like, ‘OK. Amen.’ And within a half-hour I was buying a plane ticket.” Whittington picked Hebert up from the airport, took him to the hat shop, gave him a four-day and four-night crash course in the art and even fed him dinner. Hebert, to this day and forever, remains beyond grateful. Admittedly, Hebert knows the microwave hat-making education he received doesn’t make him a master, but still feels he delivers a quality product while fulfilling a passion that’s particularly fitting. “There’s just this vibe about the Hatmaker that no other artisan or craftsman carries,” Hebert says. “It’s the eccentricity of the character itself — The Mad Hatter. And that spoke to my personality — not worrying about keeping my hair a certain way, or getting too many tattoos because I’d be less marketable as an actor. In this, it doesn’t matter. “I’m completely free to express myself to the fullest.” n 79

culture en français, s’il vous plaît

For an English translation, visit


Dr John Bertrand L’homme qu’il fallait par david cheramie


acadiana profile Feb/march 2018

près la mort de Jimmie Domengeaux en 1988, l’avenir du CODOFIL ne semblait pas assuré. Son fondateur lui-même avait exprimé quelques doutes sur la survie de cette organisation qu’il avait portée sur ses épaules depuis sa création en 1968. L’élan initial s’était essoufflé, l’état sortait péniblement d’une récession économique dévastatrice et l’éducation était en pleine évolution. Pour que cette agence unique puisse se pérenniser et se forger une identité séparée de celle de son fondateur, il fallait désigner un successeur capable de combiner l’expertise d’un éducateur chevronné, le savoir-faire d’un administrateur respecté et la vision d’un homme d’état. S’il avait fallu construire ce remplaçant hypothétique à partir de ces éléments, on aurait quand même fini par trouver le Dr John Avery Bertrand. Né au Texas, sa mère repart bientôt vivre en Louisiane où la jeune veuve inculque à sa famille le sens du travail. Bertrand s’est vite distingué sur le plan scolaire, finissant son diplôme de l’école secondaire avec honneurs à l’âge de seize ans. Quelques temps après, il s’est enrôlé dans la Garde côtière pendant la Deuxième guerre mondiale. En 1946, retrouvant la vie civile, il s’est marié avec sa bien-aimée, Ella Mae Simar. Profitant de la législation sur les anciens combattants, il s’est inscrit à l’Institut du sud-ouest de Louisiane (aujourd’hui UL-Lafayette) d’où il a encore gradué avec honneurs. Ensuite, il a reçu une maîtrise de LSU et enfin un doctorat de l’Université du Texas à Austin en 1966.Tout en poursuivant ces diplômes, il se faisait la réputation d’un enseignant juste et innovateur, contribuant à sa montée dans le monde de l’éducation. Après vingt ans de carrière, il s’est fait nommer Surintendant de la paroisse d’Acadie. Pendant son mandat de dix-neuf ans, il a fait construire de nouvelles écoles, a rénové les autres et a adopté les approches éducatives les plus progressistes. Il a même réalisé un exploit inouï pour l’époque : sous sa tutelle, la paroisse d’Acadie a réussi l’intégration raciale sans incident. Il a même inscrit sa propre fille dans une école intégrée, faisant preuve de son engagement. À sa retraite en 1984, son impact était immense et se fait sentir encore aujourd’hui. L’année précédente, il avait été élu au conseil d’éducation pour la Louisiane, le BESE, où il a servi pendant seize ans. Il a réformé les qualifications des enseignants et les exigences de graduation des élèves, parmi beaucoup d’autres améliorations. De cette position, il a pu mener une politique en faveur du français qui a grandement contribué à son expansion dans les écoles, notamment la création des programmes d’immersion dont le plus vieux à Prien Lake Elementary existe encore. Son mandat de président du CODOFIL, qui a duré jusqu’en décembre 1993, était l’extension naturelle d’une vie dédiée au respect et au progrès de l’autrui. Il a fallu un homme de la trempe du Dr Bertrand, décédé en 2013, pour mener le bateau du CODOFIL dans les eaux incertaines de l’après-Domengeaux, un homme qui savait manœuvrer entre les mondes de l’éducation et de la politique. n