Thrive August 2022

Page 1



Back Basics



Car Guide

Oh The Cost of Driving



Rehabilitation Hospital

of Jennings


• Brain Injury

• Hip Fractures

• Strokes

• Osteoarthritis/DJD

• Amputations

• Neurological Disorders

• Burns

• Spinal Cord Injury

• Major Multiple Trauma

• Congenital Deformities

• Rheumatoid Arthritis

• Systemic Vasculidities

• Joint Replacements

Others who can benefit from inpatient rehabilitation are postoperative patients, accident victims and cancer patients. 24 Hour Nursing Care • Physical Therapy • Occupational Therapy Speech Therapy • Nutritional Counseling and Monitoring Case Management Call for a free assessment today. One Hospital Drive, Ste. 101 • Jennings, LA 70546 • Phone: (337) 821-5353 • Fax: (337) 821-5355 or 5366 • 2

Thrive Magazine for Better Living • August 2022

t r e Exp

at Every Age. e r a C N Y G / B O Obstetrician – Gynecologists (OB/GYNs) help women have healthy babies and safe deliveries, and they diagnose and treat health issues specific to women, throughout their lifespan.

Bradley Forsyth, MD

Gisele McKinney, MD

Rafiné Moreno-Jackson, MD

At Memorial’s Hospital for Women, this specialty care can include acute and chronic illnesses, breast and gynecological exams, endometriosis, pregnancy and family planning, high-risk pregnancy, infertility treatments, menstrual irregularities, pre-menstrual syndrome, menopause, osteoporosis, urinary track disorders, operative gynecology – including minimally invasive laparoscopic surgeries, vaginal infections, well-woman care, and more. For care that you can count on, call 337.480.5510 or 5570. New patients are welcomed.

Matthew Scroggs, MD

Joseph Semien, Jr., MD

Norman Stewart, MD


Contents In This Issue Money & Career


Car Car Guide Guide

Regular Features

16 Business Buzz 64 Who’s News 66 Solutions for Life

The Cost of Driving


14 LNG Center of Excellence at McNeese

Home & Family


Oh Baby!

Mind & Body


Back Basics




Style & Beauty

44 The Fade 46 Game Day Fashion

Places & Faces



Wining & Dining


60 Tin Lizard at Delta Downs 62 Recovery Spotlight – Pronia’s

@thriveswla | Thrive is designed for people focused on living a happy, healthy life, one that is balanced, full of energy and contentment. Thrive readers want to make the most of every day and to be successful in all areas of their lives – family, health, home and career. Submitted articles and photos are welcome. Thrive assumes no responsibility for unsolicited materials and does not guarantee any submissions. 4

Thrive Magazine for Better Living • August 2022

Managing Editor Editors and Publishers Creative Director Design and Layout Business Manager Advertising Sales Submissions

Angie Kay Dilmore Kristy Como Armand Christine Fisher Barbara VanGossen Sarah Bercier Katie McDaniel Stevenson 337.310.2099


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Money & Career

Car Guide The Cost of Driving


Thrive Magazine for Better Living • August 2022

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 91.5% of U.S. households own at least one vehicle; up from 90.9% in 2015. There was a total of 275,924,442 registered vehicles in the United States in 2020, according to the Federal Highway Administration. That is a lot of cars and a lot of car drivers! In this annual car guide, we’re looking at the costs to own and operate a car – including tips to save you money! You’ll find articles on how insurance and inflation can affect costs, how to get better fuel efficiency, how to avoid car theft, and the latest on electric vehicles.

Top 10 Ways to Reduce

Fuel Consumption

With the recent hikes in gas prices, try the following tips to increase fuel efficiency. Keep tires pumped up. Tires that are

Don’t go too fast or too slow.

Cruise in top gear. If you’re driving

Plan your rush hour route. Stop-

underinflated have a higher rolling resistance on the road. This means that with every mile traveled, your tires generate more friction and rolling resistance, and will increase fuel consumption. If all your tires are underinflated by 10 psi, this could reduce fuel efficiency by up to 10%.

When cruising down a highway, your engine works hard to overcome wind resistance. That may tempt you to drive slow, but if you drive too slow, you drop to a lower gear, thus using more fuel. Optimal highway speed for fuel efficiency is approx. 55-60 mph.

an automatic car, make use of cruise control to keep your speed constant. And if you’re driving a manual car, maintain a higher gear when appropriate. In each of these instances, your engine goes through less revolutions per minute (RPM) and will reduce your fuel consumption.

start traffic puts a lot of pressure on your engine, thus burns more fuel. When possible, plan your commute to and from work carefully to help you avoid the worst of peak traffic.

Lose the weight in your trunk.

Avoid revving your accelerator to a high revolutions per minute (RPM). It’s better for fuel economy, as your engine uses less fuel when it is revolving slower, at a lower RPM.

For those with a habit of keeping everything and anything in the vehicle trunk, in addition to emergency spares, think twice when loading up next time. Extra pounds in your car means increased fuel consumption.

Drive with the AC on. Driving with the windows down at higher speeds, i.e. highway driving, causes a lot of wind resistance, and costs you a lot more fuel. Contrary to what you may think, in this situation, it’s simply more fuel efficient to drive with the AC on.

Remain steady when accelerating.

Avoid braking aggressively. Slamming on the brakes increases fuel consumption as you need to accelerate again later. This is especially true if you follow too closely behind the vehicle in front of you. Not to mention, tailgating is dangerous and something to avoid.

Practice predictive driving. Look to the road ahead and plan your next move. Instead of slamming on the brakes to a complete stop, try slowing down as you approach the red light. Or when reaching the foot of a hill, start accelerating as you edge closer to it rather than when you approach it. Avoid hard accelerations when moving your car from a complete stop or climbing a hill as it will increase fuel consumption.

Don’t idle for long periods. If you are waiting for something or someone for more than three minutes, turn off your engine. You may not be moving but as long as your engine is on, it’s burning precious fuel. And a final word. Regular car servicing helps maintain your engine’s fuel efficiency. Engine parts work closely in tandem. If poorly maintained, sludge and corrosion will build-up between the parts making it difficult for the engine to work smoothly. This is also why engine oils are important. A good high-performance engine oil can help to reduce friction in the engine, combat sludge, and improve fuel economy. Source:


Money & Career | Car Guide

Car Car Theft Theft is on the rise


Thrive Magazine for Better Living • August 2022

If you have an older, less expensive car and think that makes you less of a target for car thieves, think again.

In fact, across all 50 states for the most recent year data is available, 2019, there are remarkably few 2018 models — and only five 2019 models — on the ‘most stolen’ list. The more popular a vehicle is, it appears the more of a target it becomes for would-be car thieves. Full-size Ford and Chevy pickup trucks and Honda Civics are extremely popular, affordable cars and also top the list for cars most likely to be stolen across the U.S. Other factors that determine how likely a vehicle is to be stolen are the location and the model year. Whether a thief prefers an older model without an anti-theft system, or a newer one with an easily replicated key fob, there are a few factors that can make some cars more attractive than others to auto thieves.

Cars most likely to be stolen in the U.S. Each year, the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB) tracks data from across the country regarding the vehicles most stolen. • In 2019, the Ford pickup truck took the top spot, with almost 39,000 reported thefts. The 2006 model year has the highest reported thefts among the Ford Pickup. • The Honda Civic is the second most stolen vehicle, with over 30,000 thefts reported in 2019, and the 2000 model year proving to be the most desirable. • Rounding out the top five most stolen cars are the full-size Chevrolet pickup truck, the Honda Accord and the Toyota Camry. Top 3 vehicles stolen in Louisiana, according to • 2006 Ford Pickup (full-size) • 2006 Chevrolet Pickup (full-size) • 2015 Nissan Altima

What to do if your car is stolen If your car is stolen, contact the police immediately. The NHTSA says you may need to provide the following information to the police:

What increases the chances of a car being stolen?

The NICB cites numerous factors contributing to the overall rise in auto thefts since 2019. The COVID-19 pandemic, the economic downturn, and less public safety funding have likely contributed to the uptick of stolen vehicles. However, there are other major factors contributing as well. Model The model of the vehicle is a major factor when thieves target vehicles to steal. The more popular the model is, the more likely it becomes a favorite target. With the Ford F-Series continuing to dominate the sales charts in the U.S., it makes sense it would be a favorite for thieves simply due to its popularity.

Additionally, when a car is popular, the market is bigger for after-market parts. Year The model year also plays a role in why some vehicles are higher targets than others. Key fobs used in newer models are easily acquired and removes the need for hot-wiring. On the other hand, older vehicles without the standard antitheft systems installed are also attractive to would-be thieves because they may be easier to break into. Value of precious metals As the value of metals continues to climb, so does the desire to steal car parts. The catalytic converter, which is made of precious metals like platinum and rhodium, is another magnet for car thieves.

Trucks and SUVs offer easier access to the catalytic converter for thieves and fuels the targeting of these types of vehicles. Typically, older model years seem to be a bigger target for car thieves across all 50 states, from the late 90s to the mid2000s. Whatever the make and model of your car, it’s a good idea to make sure your car insurance is up-to-date and would cover a stolen vehicle.

• The year, make, model and color of the car • License plate number • Vehicle Identification Number (also called the “VIN”) • You’ll also want to let your insurance company know within 24 hours if your vehicle has been stolen. • While auto theft is not as common as it once was, it is unfortunately still something you need to protect yourself against. Thankfully, taking a few simple precautions may help you reduce the chances of your car being stolen.

Tips to help prevent your car from being stolen • Lock your doors • Remove your keys from the vehicle • Do not leave a spare key near your vehicle • Close the windows • Park in well-lit areas • Install an audible alarm system and anti-theft device • Install a vehicle immobilizer system • Install a tracking system. • Don’t leave valuables in your car • Be alert


Money & Career | Car Guide

How Inflation Can Impact Your Car

Insurance Rate and tips to lower your rate

The effects of inflation facing companies and consumers alike may also cause your car insurance rates to rise when it’s time to renew your policy. Like many other financial obligations, car insurance is an expense that’s facing pressure due to disruptions caused by the pandemic and its economic effects. According to industry and media reports, insurers may hike premiums from 6% to upwards of 10% this year. Understanding what’s fueling price increases may help you find ways to save. Here are the reasons rates are increasing and the steps you can take now to keep your costs as low as possible.

Why Are Auto Insurance Rates Increasing? The effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the economic systems underpinning common industries like auto insurance are resulting in noticeable inflation in the economy overall and within many economic sectors. Inflation in auto insurance rates is due at least in part to the following factors:


Thrive Magazine for Better Living • August 2022

by Emily Cahill

General inflationary pressures: With inflation hitting 7.5% on consumer goods, general cost increases are affecting multiple components of car insurance, from repairs to replacement costs.

Worker shortages: The auto industry is experiencing a technician shortage, right as many industries are offering higher pay to recruit and maintain staffing, potentially upping prices.

Chip shortages: A perfect storm of industry pressures and COVID-19 disruptions have caused a global shortage of the semiconductor chips needed for new vehicles.

Repair costs: Due to factors like inflation on part prices, supply chain issues and worker shortages, repair costs have increased.

Low vehicle inventory: Several factors have contributed to the vehicle inventory crunch, including chip shortages. Low vehicle inventory inflates the cost of new cars, which in turn can impact insurance premiums. Replacement costs: For policies that stipulate comparable replacement costs, insurance companies are forking over more to buy comparable cars in this market when a car is totaled.

How to Reduce Your Car Insurance Rates While you can’t control how insurers price their policies, you can take action to avoid shouldering higher costs. Below are ways you can directly reduce your car insurance rates or mitigate increases. Compare insurance quotes. Price comparison sites, like Experian’s auto insurance comparison tool, can help you ensure you’re not overpaying for insurance. Experian leverages technology from Gabi®, an auto insurance marketplace and part of Experian, to compare quotes from over 40 top providers in minutes.

Reduce coverage. When the cost of auto insurance gets tight, you could consider reducing coverage. Review your policy and see if you have any add-ons that you could do without, such as roadside assistance. If you have an older car that may not be worth the cost of repairs, you might weigh removing collision and comprehensive coverage costs with how much you're willing to spend on any potential repairs. Increase your deductible. One way to get a lower premium now is to opt for an increased auto insurance deductible later. Your deductible is the amount you pay after an incident before your insurance kicks in. Increasing your deductible will reduce your premium now—but you›ll pay more out of pocket if you have an incident down the road. Use driver tracking programs. Your insurance premiums are determined by the information the insurer collects to calculate the level of risk of insuring

you. If you provide them with more information about your specific driving habits by using an app or a recording device in your vehicle, it could reduce your costs. With more information about how you drive, the insurance company may drop your rates by 25% or more. Check for discounts. Have your circumstances recently qualified you for a new discount such as a senior/ retirement discount or a good student discount? Check out your insurer›s various discounts and see where you can save. Improve your credit score. Your credit history may impact the price of your auto insurance if your insurance company considers your credit-based insurance score. These scores are based on your credit reports but look at the likelihood that you will file a claim and can raise or lower your rates accordingly. You can check your credit report and score for free to find out where you

stand and how that might impact your insurance-based credit score. Pay off your auto loan. If your vehicle is still financed, your lien holder may require that you hold a higher level of insurance, such as comprehensive and collision. If you›re close to the end of your loan, pay it off and consider reducing or dropping your insurance coverage to something more manageable. Whether it’s rising car insurance prices or other areas of your life that are getting more expensive, taking action to help reduce costs is a good first step toward reducing the effects of inflation. Emily Cahill is a writer for Experian, the world’s leading global information services company. As a finance and lifestyle writer she is passionate about empowering people to make smart choices in their financial and personal lives.

Hi, I’m your new good neighbor. Madison W. Crain, Agent 4080 Nelson Road Suite 900 Lake Charles, LA 70605 Bus: 337-477-3830 M-F 9:00am-5:00pm After hours by appointment

I’m excited to be a new State Farm agent in Lake Charles and am here to help you with your insurance and financial needs. ®

Contact me anytime.

State Farm Bloomington, IL 2101273


Money & Career | Car Guide

New Reasons to Consider Owning an

Electric Electric Vehicle Vehicle

by Angie Kay Dilmore

Electric cars have been applauded for their smooth, quiet performance and lower impact on the environment. But lately they’re becoming even more attractive for a variety of reasons.


Thrive Magazine for Better Living • August 2022

With the recent price of gasoline, energy efficiency is driving many car shoppers to consider electric vehicles (EV). The cost to operate an EV is less than half of a gas-fueled car. Also, EVs have fewer moving parts than traditional vehicles, which means easier and less expensive repairs and maintenance. More manufacturers are getting in on the EV market, making them more affordable and offering more variety. For years, Tesla was THE electric car. Now, companies like Chevrolet, Nissan, Volkswagen and others offer EVs. Even the popular Ford Mustang and F-150 are available in EV!

Some buyers fear the lack of range of EVs. Certainly, it is something to consider. No one wants to run out of . . . electricity. New EVs get approximately 250-300 miles on a full charge, which is great for most people day-to-day. Road trips are the concern. It might require some research and planning to know which hotels and businesses offer charging stations. Or consider buying a hybrid electric, which runs on both electric and gasoline. Yes, electric vehicles will cost buyers more up front at the dealership. But there are incentives there, too. Some car manufacturers offer free “fill-ups” on a public charging network for a period of time. Some states offer incentives to EV buyers. In Louisiana, the electric vehicle incentive is a tax credit that will save buyers 10% on the purchase price of an electric or plug-in hybrid electric vehicle, up to $2,500. EVs can also qualify for a federal tax credit of up to $7,500, depending on the brand. The tax credit law allotted a fixed amount to each manufacturer. GM and Tesla have both already used their allotment. So if all this sparks your interest, do some research and decide which electric vehicle could be a good fit for you. It might be a great time to buy!


Money & Career


Center of Excellence at



to Break

Ground Later this Year

s the largest exporter of liquified natural gas in the country, it makes sense that Southwest Louisiana should expand its role as America’s LNG industry leader. Back in mid-2020, industry maverick and director of Lake Area Industry Alliance Jim Rock met with McNeese State University president, Dr. Daryl Burckel, and several science and engineering professors to discuss how the SWLA community might best meet the needs of our burgeoning LNG industry. They set in motion the beginnings of the LNG Center of Excellence at McNeese. This Center, slated to open in the first quarter of 2024, will put our region on the global LNG map not only for its energy contributions, but for its academic significance, as well. In January 2022, the planning team brought in well-known industry consultant Jason French to lead the Center as Executive Director. French says it all began in 2020 with a $2.8 million dollar grant from the U.S. Department of Commerce and was initially envisioned as a tool for workforce development/training of existing LNG facility employees and to offer opportunities for students to train in the industry. Since then, the concept has grown to become a collaborative center for universities across the Gulf Coast. “It will be physically based on the McNeese campus, but the Center is like a three-legged stool,” says French. “The Center will serve as a facility to train students and employees at existing plants, and as a repository for best industry practices and research. We are pursuing collaboration with universities across the Gulf Coast and seeking federal dollars for research. 14

Thrive Magazine for Better Living • August 2022

And finally, we want to establish Southwest Louisiana and McNeese as a key thought leader in LNG.” French says this is an important second chapter for this region. “Thus far, we have seen massive capital investments and great corporate partners emerge. The Center will now help the community take advantage of what LNG has brought to the area, especially in opportunities for job training and industry careers.” The LNG Center of Excellence at McNeese will be located on Sale St. near the previous location of JD Bank at a cost of $14 million for construction alone. Rendering of LNG Center of Excellence at McNeese

by Angie Kay Dilmore

Fundraising efforts are underway. The plan is to break ground by the end of this year. Meanwhile, the Center will work to identify programming, mentorship and scholarship opportunities, and to shine a light on what the Center is doing to benefit Southwest Louisiana. Stay tuned for future updates!

By the Numbers

Sponsored by

LIQUIFIED NATURAL GAS (LNG) 40 Number of LNG companies in SWLA operating today –


Number of countries served by U.S. LNG exporters


(Cheniere Sabine Pass, Cameron LNG, and Venture Global Calcasieu Pass) have invested a total of 34.5 billion dollars in those facilities. That cost is the same as the cost to build the Superdome 37 times. There are tens of billions more dollars to be spent on upcoming facilities.


Number of grassroots and expansion projects in SWLA approved by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) now awaiting construction.

Depending on the size of an LNG facility, the maintenance and operations budget can be

4-5 Years to build an LNG export facility. It requires an additional 2-3 years just to get the permits needed. Investment required to obtain permit: >

$100 million

hundreds of millions a year.

billion cubic feet

= the amount of U.S. natural gas exported each day.

60% of that 12 billion comes from the three operating LNG facilities currently in SWLA. U.S. production of natural gas has gone up by 76% since the 2008 energy revolution brought about by the advent of hydraulic fracking.

By the year 2040, LNG demand globally will increase by Once constructed, some LNG plants employ approx.





Cheniere used 60,000 concrete pilings going 90 feet into the ground to support their facility. If you put those pilings end to end, they would stretch over 1000 miles, from the Gulf Coast to Chicago.

In the US, between 2005 – 2019, power generation shifts from primarily coal to natural gas decreased carbon emissions the equivalent of putting 190 million electrical vehicles on the road. Approximately 16 million EV’s are on the roads now, worldwide.


Temperature required to convert natural gas to LNG Primary source: Jason French, industry consultant


Money & Career

CHRISTUS Ochsner Lake Area Hospital Receives National Recognition CHRISTUS Ochsner Lake Area Hospital has been named as a recipient of the 2022 Outstanding Patient Experience Award by Healthgrades, one of only 399 hospitals nationwide to receive the honor. The awards are based on an analysis of 3,173 hospitals that submitted at least 75 patient experience surveys to CMS for admissions between July 2020 and March 2021. Healthgrades evaluates performance by applying a scoring methodology to 10 patient experience measures, using data collected from HCAHPS survey of the hospital’s own patients. Survey questions focus on patients’ perspectives of their care in the hospital, with topics including:

1. Overall rating 2. Recommendation to family and friends 3. Communication with doctors 4. Communication with nurses 5. Responsiveness of hospital staff 6. Communication about medicines 7. Cleanliness 8. Noise levels in patient rooms 9. Discharge information 10. Care transition The measures also include whether a patient would recommend the hospital to friends or family and their overall rating of the hospital. Healthgrades’ goal is to help consumers make confident health care decisions by enabling the evaluation and comparison of hospital performance to find the highest quality care. To learn more about the exceptional care and services provided at CHRISTUS Ochsner Lake Area Hospital, visit www.


Thrive Magazine for Better Living • August 2022

CSE Has Partnered with Cell Phones for Soldiers CSE Federal Credit Union (CSE) and nonprofit Cell Phones For Soldiers are asking Allen, Beauregard, Calcasieu, Cameron, Jeff Davis and Vernon parish residents to help troops call home by donating gentlyused cellular phones. Although the military landscape is ever changing, as many as 200,000 troops are serving in the United States military overseas around the world. By donating to Cell Phones For Soldiers, CSE can provide a lifeline for America’s bravest. Residents can donate their phones and/or tablets at CSE locations, including:

• • • •

4321 Nelson Rd., Lake Charles, LA 70605 2154 Swisco Rd., Sulphur, LA 70605 1170 Sam Houston Jones Pkwy, Lake Charles 70611 1715 Elton Rd., Jennings, LA 70546

Cell Phones For Soldiers was founded in 2004 by teenagers Robbie and Brittany Bergquist at the ages of 12 and 13. The charity has since provided more than 400 million minutes of free talk time to servicemen and women stationed around the world through its calling card program, Minutes That Matter. Funds raised from the recycling of cellular phones are used to purchase prepaid international calling cards. On average, Cell Phones For Soldiers distributes 2,500 calling cards each week to bases around the world, care package programs, deployment ceremonies and VA hospitals. For every donated phone valued at $5, Cell Phones For Soldiers is able to provide two and a half hours of free talk time to deployed troops. For more information, please visit or

CSE Federal Credit Union Offers Cash Reward with Carvana Partnership CSE Federal Credit Union (CSE) launches its partnership with Carvana July 1 to offer Members a fast, affordable and simple way to purchase a vehicle. Members can earn a $100 cash reward while enjoying an easy car buying experience through CSE’s partnership with Carvana. You decide how and when you will receive your ride with Carvana. You can have it delivered right to your driveway or pick it up from one of their Car Vending Machines. Your purchase, your choice. Shop their wide range of affordable vehicles from the comfort of your home. Plus, there are no bogus fees so you can find the right car at the right price.

AMERISAFE Named to the Ward’s 50 for the 14th Consecutive Year AMERISAFE, Inc. (Nasdaq: AMSF), a specialty provider of workers’ compensation insurance focused on high hazard industries, has been named to the Ward’s 50 top performing property-casualty companies for the14th consecutive year. This year’s award recognizes outstanding financial results in the areas of safety, consistency, and performance over the five-year period from 2017-2021.

For more information about CSE’s partnership with Carvana, please visit The Community Health Center of WCCH Celebrates One Year of Serving The Community Health Center of West Calcasieu Cameron Hospital (WCCH) is celebrating its one-year anniversary. Since its opening on July 8, 2021, the physicians and medical team have served over 7,000 patients. The clinic services include: • Walk-in (for accidents, injuries, or illnesses that are not emergencies, as well as COVID-19 vaccines) • Primary care • Gynecology • General surgery • Wound care The CHC is open daily with extended hours. It is located on the campus of WCCH, to the west of the main entrance off Stelly Lane. All patients are welcome, and a variety of insurance plans are accepted, including Medicare and Medicaid as well as patients without insurance. Same day appointments are available. For more information, call (337) 310-0395 or visit


Home & Family

! y b a Oh B Let’s be honest – babies are A LOT! A lot of time and effort, a lot of money, a lot of care and patience, and of course, a lot of love. Most parents of grown children will tell you the most rewarding and most challenging role they’ve ever fulfilled is raising their kids. It’s a big job! Whether you are thinking about having a baby, are expecting a baby, or have a baby, the prospect can be overwhelming. In this special section on babies, we hope you’ll find informative articles that might make that big job a little easier.


Thrive Magazine for Better Living • August 2022


Home & Family | Oh


OB Hospitalists Offer a Higher Level of Care in

r o b a L y r e v i l e &D by Angie Kay Dilmore

Imagine you are in labor and have just arrived at the hospital. Your doctor is called but it might take her some time to arrive. You sense something isn’t right. You’re scared and start to panic. Enter an OB hospitalist. OB hospitalists are OB/GYN physicians who work in Labor and Delivery units in over a thousand hospitals across the country. They work exclusively in a hospital and are specially trained in labor, delivery, and gynecological emergencies. When there is a concern, an OB hospitalist can attend to the problem quickly, communicate details to your physician, and bridge the gap until your physician arrives. OB hospitalist programs improve the safety of both moms and babies, increase positive outcomes, and give families an extra layer of peace of mind.


Thrive Magazine for Better Living • August 2022

CHRISTUS Ochsner Lake Area Hospital is in the process of launching an OB Hospitalist program – the first of its kind in Lake Charles. Dr. Rakhi Dimino, Regional Medical Director of Operations with OB Hospitalist Group, based in Houston, is coordinating the program. She is currently hiring and orienting five to eight physicians who will staff Lake Area Hospital’s program, slated to begin in mid-September. One important program feature is to establish a full coverage OB Emergency Room. "With this program, we have a presence in the hospital 100% of the time. We become safety champions for that labor and delivery unit, watching over the unit and the patients. We can quickly intervene if a situation is headed in the wrong direction, protecting both mom and baby. We not only respond to emergencies, but also try to prevent them from happening, all while coordinating with the patient’s physician.”

“This progressive OB Hospitalist program is strongly supported by our OBGYNs,” states James Brown, MD, CHRISTUS Ochsner Lake Area’s OB Chair. “This program improves quality, safety and the expecting mother’s experience while in labor and sets us apart from all others in SWLA.” “We want expecting mothers to know when they come to the ER, we have a team ready to work with their obstetrician to provide the best possible care for them,” says David Boudreaux, Administrator, CHRISTUS Ochsner Lake Area Hospital. “When these emergencies happen, it is usually quick. These hospitalists are here to make sure when unexpected care is needed for mom and baby, outcomes are positive.” In addition to monitoring women in labor and managing emergencies, OB Hospitalists benefit patients in other ways. They can assist a woman who is not pregnant but is having a gynecological emergency. They attend to women

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p e e l S Safe e c r o F Task According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) and unsafe sleeping environments are two of the leading causes of infant deaths. Nationally, Louisiana ranks third highest in this cause of infant death and Southwest Louisiana ranks highest in the state.

The SWLA Safe Sleep Task Force aims to protect the lives of infants through safe sleeping measures. Their goal is to educate parents, professionals, and caregivers on the American Academy of Pediatrics Safe Sleep Guidelines and to improve knowledge, attitudes, and beliefs about the risk of unsafe sleep environments. This group of approximately 30 local community leaders is passionate


Thrive Magazine for Better Living • August 2022

about their message. They provide educational classes and materials to new and expecting parents and caregivers, as well as continuing education credits for professionals. They partner with various businesses and agencies in the community including physicians, law enforcement, hospitals and, and civic organizations to get the word out through health fairs and other community events. Executive Committee Task Force member Charlie Hunter is the Chief Investigator and Director of Operations at the Calcasieu Parish Coroner’s Office and was a founding member of the Safe Sleep Task Force. He says his work with the Safe Sleep Task Force is his greatest accomplishment. Hunter has taught hundreds of safe sleep classes and has spoken at hundreds of events spreading their life-saving message. “Over the last 10+ years, our program has successfully reduced infant deaths by 66% thanks to the work of this amazing group.”

Hunter says the Task Force works with law enforcement for their Cops N’ Cribs program. “Each parent who attends a class is provided a free Pack n’ Play portable crib to ensure the infant has a safe place to sleep.” They also work with fire departments for Operation Sleep Sound and with their Acadian Ambulance Service partnership. “Our partnerships with these agencies have allowed our first responders to recognize potentially dangerous situations and intervene with the caregiver as well as provide a safe place for the infant to sleep.” The Safe Sleep program is self-sufficient as all funds are raised through donations, sponsors, and a yearly Stroll & Roll fundraiser. For more information on Safe Sleep, visit the Task Force website,


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Childhood Vaccines What You Should Know

Since the development of the smallpox vaccine in the late 1700s to today’s COVID-19 vaccines, these medical marvels have been saving lives for over 200 years. Over the decades, numerous potentially deadly diseases such as polio and diphtheria have nearly been eradicated by childhood immunizations. Dr. Stephanie Treme, pediatrician

at the Children’s Clinic, says many children got behind on their vaccinations due to the pandemic and after the 2020 hurricanes. “Now is a great time to catch your child up! Children typically receive vaccines at their checkups between two months and four years old and then again at 11 and 16 years old. With our current vaccine schedule, we can protect kids from over 15 different illnesses that previously killed millions of children around the world annually.”


Thrive Magazine for Better Living • August 2022

Dr. Treme highly recommends the COVID-19 vaccine for children. “As a mom of a six-year-old daughter, I was so excited to get her vaccinated on the first day it became available for her age group. It was a huge relief to know that I had done everything in my power to protect her during a potential infection. Getting her vaccinated was never about totally preventing her from catching COVID-19, but instead about protecting her from a bad outcome if she does become infected. Many parents have told me they feel like infection-induced immunity is better or stronger than vaccine-induced immunity, but studies have shown us that is not the case. Patients with the best protection are those who both received the vaccine and also became infected.” Dr. Treme says there are countless reasons to consider getting a child vaccinated for COVID-19. “They have young, immature immune systems and can easily get overwhelmed by infections. We aren’t sure of all the long-term complications after a covid infection (although we do know there are many possibilities).

Trying to prevent your child from feeling really miserably sick is another great reason to get vaccinated. The covid vaccine is one of the most exciting medical advances we’ve seen in our lifetime. It has been shown in large studies to be safe and effective in both adults and children. I frequently hear that the studies on children were too small, but in reality, this vaccine has been one of the most scrutinized medications in history, and the study sizes were pretty large compared to other childhood medications.” Dr. Treme also says it is important to know about the potential risks with the COVID-19 vaccine. “There are extremely few reasons not to get your child vaccinated. Allergy to vaccine components is the only true contraindication to receiving the COVID-19 vaccine. The ingredients include the mRNA that makes them work, fats, salts, and sugars. They contain no eggs, latex, or preservatives. If you think your child may be allergic to one of the components, talk to your child’s doctor.”

Myocarditis (inflammation in the heart muscles) can be another concern for children who receive the COVID-19 vaccine. “The CDC was very transparent about this risk from early on and started studying it quickly,” Dr. Treme says. “Although there is a very small risk of myocarditis associated with the vaccine (less than 0.01%, and these few cases are typically very mild), there is a much higher risk of developing myocarditis from a COVID-19 infection. In a recent review of patients from more than 900 hospitals in the U.S., children are 37 times more likely to develop myocarditis directly related to a COVID-19 infection than children who have not been infected.” Dr. Treme says she understands the hesitancy parents experience regarding the COVID-19 vaccine. “It is easy to feel overwhelmed. There is so much information (and misinformation) out there, it can be hard to sift through it all. If you are worried or have specific questions, please talk to your child’s doctor.”

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Ben Darby, MD, FACOG, OB/GYN Scott Bergstedt, MD, FACOG, OB/GYN Allison Hansen, CNM, WHNP, Midwife


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Hearing Impairment Can Have Big Impact for

s r a E l l a m S by Tori Hebert

Hearing is a fundamental part of learning. The awe-inducing babbling of infants is actually their way of mimicking sounds they hear. However, nearly two of every 1000 babies are born each year in the United States with hearing impairment. “Hearing loss is one of the most common childhood obstacles,” said Bridget B. Garrido, Au.D., Doctor of Audiology with Acadiana Hearing & Speech Services. “Without the ability to hear sound, babies cannot pattern speech, which can impact their language skills.” Universal newborn hearing screening programs are mandatory in Louisiana, where the Early Hearing Detection and Intervention (LEHDI) program oversees screenings on all infants who are born in a hospital or a medical facility. This means a baby’s hearing ability is checked before the family goes home. “The test is quick,


Thrive Magazine for Better Living • August 2022

painless and can be done while the baby is asleep,” explains Dr. Garrido. If the baby fails the hospital screening, we see those infants in our office for further diagnostic testing. Without newborn screening, children with hearing impairments often are not diagnosed until two or three years of age.” She says the goal of early screening, combined with follow-up testing and treatment, is to help children with hearing impairment develop language and academic skills on a level equal to that of their peers. Hearing impairment can be inherited, syndromic or the result of illness or injury before, during or after birth. About 90% of babies with hearing impairments are born to parents with normal hearing, according to the March of Dimes. “Babies with hearing difficulties must be seen by a specialist at one month of age,” says Dr. Garrido. “The goal of the LEHDI program is by one month, retest the infant, at three months, have a complete diagnosis, and by six months of age, have intervention in place.”

Dr. Garrido said parents should be alert to any signs of hearing problems, such as: • Not turning toward the sound of a voice by six months of age • Lack of babbling by 12 months of age • Failure to startle at loud sounds • Not using single words by 18 months “If you notice any of these, have your pediatrician refer you to an audiologist,” says Dr. Garrido. “Research shows that if a child’s hearing loss is remedied by six months of age, it will prevent subsequent language delays. Being sure your baby’s hearing is as it should be will help them in every aspect of learning and development. For more information, or to schedule a hearing evaluation, call Acadiana Speech & Hearing Services at (337) 436-3277 or visit


“Babies with hearing difficulties should be seen by a specialist within three months to avoid developmental delays.”

for their 2021-2022 Community Project:


Dr. Garrido said parents should be alert to any signs of hearing problems, such as: Tellurian’s Youth LEAD (Leadership, Enrichment and Development) • Not turning toward the program is an innovative, yetasimple, initiative sound of voice by six to identify and of of age cultivate the next months generation leaders in our neighboring communities. Program participants, who are selected through • Lack of babbling by 12 a competitive application months process, of age are given $20,000 and one guiding rule: “Do good in your community.” LEAD members solicit • Failure to startle at loud input from elected officials, non-profit organizations and business sounds leaders to identify pressing community needs, and then execute a • Not using single words 18 project to address them. We are thrilled withby Washington Marion’s months LEAD Council decision to promote literacy in their community with their project at EPPS Memorial Library this year. With the funds “If you notice any of these, provided by the LEAD students, thepediatrician, rebuild will be discuss with your ” able to include new technology for innovative teen programming and services, she says. including items for a special Library of Things.

“I truly enjoyed working on our project with Epps Memorial Library. We were heartbroken when we saw the condition of our community library. This was the place we would go after school to do homework, and a safe place to see our friends after school.” ~Grace Bettis, a junior and LEAD Council Member at Washington Marion High School.

The 2021-2022 Washington Marion High School LEAD Council members pictured from left to right are Christopher Berard, Madyson Williams, De’Asha General, Denea Heath, Kalei Lilly, Gabrielle Jack, Alynah Jefferson, Faculty Advisor Corry Allen, Grace Bettis, Dante Leday and Armorie Hagans. Not pictured: Ziyon Perry.

Hurricane damage

Rochelle Rigmaiden Epps

Epps Library before hurricane damage.

“I am extremely proud of the young scholars of Washington Marion LEAD Council for spearheading this project for the Epps Memorial Library with the assistance of a financial grant from Tellurian. It is also a pleasure seeing these young people get deeply involved with improving the quality of life for our community. Epps Library is in a rebuilding stage and once completed, the Lead Council students will see their vision fully engaged for the community to experience.” ~ Mike Smith, Calcasieu Parish Police Juror District 2 and Washington Marion High School Alumni

THE EPPS MEMORIAL LIBRARY PROJECT Epps Memorial Library, originally named the Carver Branch Library, first opened in 1945. It was the first library opened specifically for the African American community in Calcasieu Parish. It quickly became an important part of North Lake Charles, providing educational support to local residents. It was renamed in 1976 to honor Rochelle Rigmaiden Epps, local business woman and longtime library board member. Epps Memorial Library sustained significant damages from Hurricanes Laura and Delta in 2020. The Washington Marion High School LEAD Council chose to focus their community project on literacy this year following a meeting with community leaders where various challenges facing local residents were discussed. Epps Memorial Library was quickly identified as the ideal project partner after the students visited the library and observed the building damages sustained from the hurricanes in 2020. The LEAD Council’s $20,000 donation to the library will be used to help purchase new technology for innovative teen programming and services as the library rebuilds. The library will be able to offer local teens opportunities to create, explore, and engage with high-quality equipment for video production as well as virtual reality experiences. Video production tools range from basic tripods to professional backdrops and green screens, making the digital possibilities endless. The Library of Things will hold items that are available to check out. Some of the planned items will match the video production tools available for inlibrary use and others will help the community capture and celebrate its past through digitization equipment.



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Baby! Around 18 months of age, you will notice a rapid growth in vocabulary, often labeled a ‘language explosion’.

Encouraging your Child to

e t a c i n u Comm by Megan Musso, MA, CCC-SLP, IBCLC

Most parents remember their child’s first word, usually around 12 months old, but so much goes into nurturing and encouraging a child’s communication skills before we are rewarded with their precious voice calling out to ‘mama’ and ‘dada’.

As early as three months your child may begin communicating with you by smiling, cooing and gooing, quieting to your voice, and even crying. As they approach six months, you may be rewarded with a giggle during peek-a-boo or babbling when happy. Talking to your baby during daily routines, reading simple picture books, and responding to their vocalizations are all ways to encourage communication during this stage of infancy. Remember to be playful when interacting with your baby; research shows infants prefer a high-pitched voice with varying tones. Between six months and a year, things really get fun! Your child is learning to express their self through body language, gestures, and even more diverse vocalizations. Sign language is a great way to help your baby communicate their wants/needs during this time before true words are


Thrive Magazine for Better Living • August 2022

physically possible. Starting with basic signs during daily routines (eat, drink, all done, book, more) is a wonderful way to help your baby request and participate in the give and take that communication requires. During this time your baby will begin to recognize his/ her name when called, respond to simple commands such as ‘no’ or ‘stop’ and engage in social games such as pat-a-cake and peek-a-boo. Babbling will become more elaborate and include a variety of consonants and vowels, the adorable backwards wave goodbye will emerge as well as clapping, blowing slobbery kisses and unavoidably shaking their head ‘no’. It’s at the end of this most exhausting yet rewarding year of life that you will begin to hear your baby’s babbling form into a true first word, and what a memorable moment that is! Playtime with storybooks, building blocks, and singing in front of a mirror are great ways to encourage communication during this time. Try and choose books with different textures, colors and flaps and toys that encourage stacking, nesting, rolling and exploring. After you’ve celebrated your baby’s first birthday, you will soon find you have an opinionated toddler with his/her own ideas and what an adventure the next 12 months will be! Your little one will begin imitating you more frequently and progress from speaking one word at a time such as ‘milk’ and ‘car’ to phrases like ‘more milk’ and ‘red car’.

If you feel that your child is not meeting his/her milestones during this early language period, do not hesitate to discuss with your pediatrician, as research shows early intervention at this age is crucial. An evaluation with a licensed speech language pathologist may be recommended to determine if your child has a speech/ language delay and the best course of action to help them improve their communication skills. For more information on speech and language milestones, visit or call Magnolia Pediatric Therapy, 337-419-0086. Megan Musso is a licensed speech language pathologist and internationally board certified lactation consultant. She co-authored Tongue-Tied: How A Tiny String Under the Tongue Impacts Nursing, Speech, Feeding and More, and is the owner of Magnolia Pediatric Therapy, where her team of speech pathologists and occupational therapist specialize in speech/language, feeding, lactation, myofunctional and sensory disorders in the pediatric population. Megan lives in Lake Charles with her husband, Charlie, three-year-old Sophie, one-yearold Charles, and newborn Leo.

They will begin asking simple questions such as ‘where’s dada?’, following simple directions such as ‘go get your shoes’, identifying objects or pictures in books, and holding mini conversations with you. Reading to your child and describing daily activities, especially using new or unusual words to grab their attention, are all ways to expand communication skills at this age. Whether it be a trip to the grocery store or taking a walk outside, describing and labeling what you see and hear are great ways to build your toddler’s vocabulary. When choosing toys for your child at this age, go back to the basics that don’t require batteries – farm animals and barn, cars, simple puzzles, play kitchen and food, baby dolls; these all encourage pretend play and for your baby to use their voice and imagination. By the time your little one has made his second trip around the sun, you should expect him/her to be speaking mostly in phrases or sentences, have a vocabulary of at least 50 words, and be understood by you and other caregivers about 50% of the time. The first two years of your baby’s life pass in the blink of an eye. They quickly grow from a tiny infant with their tiny coos and goos into a toddler requesting ‘more animal crackers’ for the 100th time before noon. Enjoy each stage, for it all passes quickly, and remember they are always listening and learning – so read to them, talk to them, ask them questions, give them choices, and celebrate every milestone along the way.

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Life Insurance can Protect your

Family’s F utur e by Angie Kay Dilmore

Life insurance might not be your top priority when you are busy growing your family, but in fact, this may be the MOST important time to consider buying life insurance – and not only for yourself, but for your children, as well.

“Life insurance is key in establishing financial security for those you love,” says State Farm Insurance agent Jennifer Mabou. “Whether it helps pay the mortgage, maintains the current standard of living, pays off debts or pays for college, the life insurance that parents choose can be there when it’s needed most.” Mabou says it is also beneficial to purchase life insurance for your children. “Starting a life insurance policy for a child gifts them with a lifetime of protection and a valuable asset. A permanent life insurance policy on babies and/or children locks in coverage for life!


Thrive Magazine for Better Living • August 2022

Even if a medical condition develops later in life, this policy stays in force as long as premiums are paid when due. In many cases, if certain riders are added to the policy, the child may increase their coverage regardless of their health later in life. It guarantees protection for their future loved ones.” Another benefit is that premiums are generally much lower now than when the same life insurance policy is purchased as an adult. Also, when permanent life insurance is chosen, these premiums stay the same for life, never increasing in cost. “We also offer permanent life insurance policies that can be “paid off” in 10, 15, or 20 years,” adds Mabou. “Those policies often appeal to parents who see the benefit of a lifetime of protection for their children, while not having a premium for a lifetime.” Mabou says the following questions can help clarify the role life insurance could play in the financial future of your loved ones. “As I always mention to my clients, everyone has a budget. It is my job to find the desired coverage amount that fits each person’s budget. It is absolutely doable!

1. 2.

Who or what am I trying to protect?


What do I need to protect in the short term?


What long-range goals or objectives do I need to protect?


How will changes in my family, career, earning power and plans for retirement affect my needs?

What are my financial risks and obligations?

Choosing the right policy doesn’t need to be confusing or overwhelming. Mabou says it’s her responsibility to work with each client, one-on-one, to help ensure they have the right amount and type of life insurance in place. She adds, “Life insurance is more than just covering “funeral expenses”. It is about how life goes on after we lose a loved one. It does not replace our loved ones, but it does reduce financial burdens. I feel honored that my clients trust me to help them protect the financial future of their families.” For more information, call or visit Jennifer Mabou at 1633 Beglis Pkwy, Sulphur, LA, 337-527-0027.

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o r#k Plan Ahead ge NJennifer a P s i l g Mabou e Voted B 3 Voted #1 Insurance 3 6 in 1Ahead • Insurance Agent Plan 7 2 0 0 (337) 527-0027 • 1633 Beglis Parkway, Sulphur 7 2 5 Agent in SWLA & Prepare 37o) w. Agen (3N SWLA JENNIFERMABOU.COM h e p c l n u a r U S u , & Prepare s O y In a 1 B # w (337) 527-0027 • 1633 Begli d k A r e t a o M3huBr eglis P J E N N I F ENow. R M AifBerO M U .aCboOuM6V33 N liSsEWPR g e F B I A L 1 N n n E e • J in J teark•wa1 lp 7 n 2 Su3 galie7 ,6 0 y A 0 c Now. n 7 r 2 P u 5 s s 2 ) In 0 g 7 e 1 0 3 J E N N I F EORM MAB B # (337) 527-0027 • 1633 Beglis Parkway, Sulphur 3 3 d ( 7 3 e t • 216 V7)o5 u 7 o 2 b 3 0 a 0 3 (337) 527-0027 • 1633 Beglis Parkway, Sulphur ( 7 M 2 C 5 r . ) e 7 Jennifer A B 3 #1 Insurance gent in SWLA U nnif (3Voted JeMabou MSulphur w rO u kBe O r p h C l a A lp . M u u P U S S , s R i O y , l a O y E B g w (337) 527-0027 • 1633 Beglis Parkway, a k A e F r Agent in SWLA B a B I w P (337) 527-0027 • 1633 M Jennifer Mabou J E N N I F E R M A B O U . C O M Voted #1 Insurance k s 3 A R li r N 3 g E a e 6 F N B P M J E N N I F E R M A B O U . C O M I 1 3 E• J1E6Parkway, 3N N R •IgAgent liUsE.inC OSWLA e 7 F B 2 0 3 0 (337) 527-0027 Beglis Sulphur 3 N 7-0027J 7 6 2 1 N 5 J E N N I F E R M A B O M ) E • (337) 5• 21633 7 J 3 3 7 ( 2 M 0 O 0 C . 7 U 2 O uC 5 B h ) A p 7 l . 3 M J E N N I F E R M A u U 3 R S ( , E O y F I a B N w (337) 527-0027 • 1633 Beglis P k N A r M aM P J E N N I F JE ER M A B O U . C O M633 N O s i R l C g E . e F r B U u I h lp O u B ay, S 1 N A SWLAMabou Agent in Agent in SWLA Jennifer

(337) 527-0027 • 1633 Beglis Parkway, Sulphur


Home & Family | Oh



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No more fussing with zippers, buttons and rows of snaps in the middle of the night. Parents today have fallen head over heels with a new clothing trend that makes dressing babies intuitive and quick. Magnetic snaps have revolutionized newborn apparel, simplifying the process of dressing newborns and giving outfits a natural comfort. According to Jenna Young, owner of Pink and Blue Avenue in Lake Charles, today’s parents are concerned with comfort and convenience first when it comes to dressing their newborns. From cool bamboo to soft organic cottons, new arrivals are swaddled in cozy from day one. “When it comes to dressing today’s baby and toddler, parents are opting for simple and soft,” she said. “Organic materials with convenient fasteners are by far our most popular choice.”


Thrive Magazine for Better Living • August 2022

Modern Baby Clothes Pair Minimalistic Comfort & Convenience for a Perfect Match

by Victoria Ellender

Convenient Simplicity Pink and Blue Avenue carries several brands that simplify the dressing process for parents including Magnetic Me, one of the most popular makers of magnetic baby apparel. Magnetic Me offers a variety of options with magnetic closures including body suits, footies, swaddler sets, newborn gowns and rompers. While soft materials and easy-to-wear options are the most sought-after for every day wear, traditional smocked gowns and suits are still an important staple for many parents today. “Classic baby layette options remain on trend, including brands like Feltman Brothers and Petite Ami,” said Young. “Those beautiful smocked outfits and infant gowns are still being worn today.”

Eco-Friendly & Organic Options With comfort in mind, today’s babies are being wrapped in the softest, most breathable materials, sustainably made from beechwood trees, bamboo and organic cotton. “Some of our most popular brands for babies and toddlers include Posh Peanut, Kyte Baby and Magnetic Me. These lines offer fashionable styles with those wonderfully soft organic and hypoallergenic materials that today’s parents are looking for.”

Minimalistic Color Palettes & Earthy Tones Young said earthy solid colors and subtle prints pair well to bring soft, comfortable outfits together for infants and toddlers. “Quincy Mae is a beautiful, trending organic option that parents today love for their little ones.”

Looking for that perfect baby gift or want to dress your baby in stylish comfort? Pink and Blue Avenue is located at 4070 Nelson Road, #900 in Lake Charles. Find them on Facebook or their website,

A uniqu location f e or baby & y ou!

4070 Nelson Road, Suite 900, Lake Charles, LA 70605 • (337) 477-6587

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Mind & Body

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Thrive Magazine for Better Living • August 2022

Landscape Management Services is proud to have examples of our work across neighborhoods in Southwest Louisiana. From planning to execution, our award-winning team will exceed your expectations. Give us a call us today to book your fall color or landscape consultation.

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uffer from s le p o e p t os int in their o p e m o s t nic pain a er it is chro th e h W . e lifetim n dealing e e b e ’v u o pain y r acute pain o s r a e y r elief with fo accident, r t n e c e r a rs from Chiropracto ng . le b a v ie h sisti is ac siness of as u b e th in nd are ome pain a e c r e v o le p peo rang gh a wide u o r th s s e illn py s and thera ks e u iq n h c te in of hen one th W . s e ti li a d mo en tic, they oft ents c a r p o ir h c of stm spinal adju e th f o k in th ed rs are train to c a r p o ir h c hiropractic an c t u b ; o d to th much more today is so back cracked.” ur “getting yo ctors take a pra Most chiro ach to health ro holistic app and offer ser vices e maintenanc ilitation; massage ab d, such as reh r, ultrasoun e s la ; y p a r the therapies; o tr c le e d ch an chniques su l te e v ti a v o na inn ling; nutritio d e e n y r d as ; in counseling s s e tn fi l d n a sting spina ju d a to n additio this special In . ts n e m n s misalig hiropractor c A L W S , lping section sion for he es s a p ir e th liv share e their best ing v li ts n e li c er their ain and suff p le tt li s a with . as possible

Burning, aching or throbbing in the legs can be a sign of vein disease. If left untreated, this condition can become painful and debilitating. Trust the specialists at Cardiovascular Institute of the South who treat the root of the problem with minimally-invasive, in-clinic procedures to restore both the health and beauty of your legs.

Schedule an appointment at the CIS Leg & Vein Center today.

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Mind & Body | Back to Basics



Dr. Sarah Decareaux works with a patient at Ward Chiropractic


Thrive Magazine for Better Living • August 2022


by Angie Kay Dilmore

n a f t er o i t a t i l i b e ha ue t o d r o y r u a n i nj chronic m o r f s limitation a patient ps pain hel ctivities of a return to . It generally ng daily livi rength, st involves and agilit y , flexibilit y s well as a training, he focus .T balance dination of r is on coo s and motion. rt body pa

Dr. Sarah Decareaux with Ward Chiropractic uses rehabilitative exercises to help her patients who have been limited due to pain or decreased range of motion to regain their daily activities. “Strengthening the body makes our joints more stable when we are usually unstable due to inactivity in our daily life. The majority of my patients are recovering from accidents (slips/falls or motor vehicle accidents) and chronic diseases such as postural syndromes from sitting or standing 40+ hours a week at their jobs.” Dr. Decareaux treats all types of patients – women and men, children and adults, prenatal/postnatal women. “I like to think of my practice as a family practice. At Ward Chiropractic, we treat each patient as an individual. Every treatment plan is

determined by each patient’s lifestyle and how their specific injury occured. We offer a variety of equipment and techniques to fit most lifestyles.” Success of a rehabilitation program is determined by three primary objectives, says Dr. Decareaux. “Key components for a positive rehab outcome are proper technique, patient education, and patient dedication to their at-home exercise routine. It’s like in sports, practice makes perfect. Proper technique will have exponential change compared to substandard technique. And educating the patient on why and how the movements will impact their daily life will create better dedication to their home exercises.” To enhance the rehabilitation process,

Ward Chiropractic also offers a long list of other treatment modalities that can complement rehab, such as Kinesio Taping which stabilizes an injured area by lightly adhering to the skin and applying pressure to the tissues the tape is wrapped around. Physical therapy, ultrasound, and electrical stimulation can also be used in conjunction with rehabilitation to achieve desired results. Dr. Decareaux adds, “We will work hard with our patients to help them return to an active, pain-free life.” Ward Chiropractic is located at 4211 Lake St., Lake Charles. For more info or to make an appointment, see their website at or call 337-990-5497.

Chiropractic Care for All Ages Dr. Sar ah D.C. Decar eaux FAMILY CHIROPRACTIC

SERVICES • • • • • • • • •

Chiropractic Adjustments Decompression Dry Needling FATKR/IASTM Muscle Stimulation Rehabilitative Services Taping Webster Technique X-Rays & More 4211 Lake Street, Suite 20 Lake Charles, LA 70605



Mind & Body | Back to Basics


G E PR N NA CY Some women may think that

pain and discomfort are a natural part of pregnancy, but Dr. Laurie Baynard at Lake Charles Chiropractic disagrees. “Many of my patients are more comfortable during pregnancy and report better deliveries with chiropractic care. Even my patients who have c-sections have easier recoveries due to the core exercises we do throughout their pregnancy. I have been doing prenatal and pediatric chiropractic care for over ten years and have developed a program that helps target many of the aches and pains associated with pregnancy.”

During pregnancy, a lot is going on, Dr. Laurie says. “Your body is constantly adapting to a growing baby, hormonal changes, and the shifts in your center of gravity. As your baby grows inside your uterus, you start to lean back so you don’t fall forward, the arch in your lumbar spine increases, and your pelvis tilts forward to allow growth. This creates a lot of pressure in your low back and pelvis. If it’s your second pregnancy, many of these symptoms begin even sooner than with your first. I do the Webster Technique on my prenatal patients, which is a chiropractic adjusting technique made to analyze and balance the pelvis so that it moves properly when you walk, change positions, and engage in life. This also helps prepare your pelvis for labor because your pelvis is a HUGE part of the birth process. Pregnancy really is special and miraculous, and it shouldn’t be riddled with pain.” Dr. Laurie’s prenatal program includes exercises that strengthen the core and help with pelvic imbalances, hydromassage, and adjustments via the Webster Technique. “You need a strong core during pregnancy, but it is difficult to strengthen your core during pregnancy. My program engages the core in different and safe ways,” she says.

“Hydromassage allows patients a bit of relaxation while improving circulation, relieving muscle soreness, and reducing the level of stress and anxiety. Prenatal chiropractic care is one of the best things you can do for yourself during your pregnancy.” Postpartum care can also be beneficial and aide in the recovery from childbirth. “After delivery is one of my favorite times to care for women,” Dr. Laurie says. “A lot of changes have happened over the last year and your body is in somewhat of a healing mode as it adapts to this new chapter. Your pelvis and body are recovering, and everything is starting to come back together. I am passionate about taking care of moms who are busy taking care of everyone else.” Dr. Laurie says the benefits of chiropractic for expecting moms include less pain, more mobility, improved sleep, and great deliveries. She also treats infants, who may experience improved sleep and relaxation from chiropractic care. Dr. Laurie has taken over 300 hours of continuing education in prenatal and pediatric chiropractic to be able to care for this population and recently moved to a new state of the art spa-like facility at 5656 Nelson Rd Suite A2, Lake Charles. For more information or to make an appointment, call 337-240-6619 or see Dr. Laurie’s website,


Thrive Magazine for Better Living • August 2022


BACK PAIN by Kristy Como Armand

If you suffer from lower back pain, you’re not alone. Most men — and women — will experience back pain at one time or another. In fact, the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke reports about four out of five adults will have low back pain at some point during their lifetimes and more than one in four report having experienced low back pain in the past three months. Low back pain is the second leading reason for both medical physician and hospital visits. Causes for the pain vary — maybe you were in a car accident or you forgot to “lift with your legs” when moving that new couch into your house. Medical conditions such as arthritis and scoliosis can also result in back pain, as can degenerative changes in the spine that are a normal part of the aging process. If your job requires you to sit at a desk all day, that could be a cause of your back problems, as well. Dr. Joey Kulaga, chiropractor and co-founder of Lake Charles Chiropractic and Functional Medicine, says one common misconception is that low back pain is just a normal part of aging. “Low back pain is common, but not normal, and certainly not something you should expect – nor accept – as part of getting older.” He explains that bad posture and sitting in a chair incorrectly can put a lot of stress on the neck and back. “Many of my patients are surprised to discover this is the source of their low back pain.” He also explains that over 85% of low back pain is considered “non-specific,” meaning there is no known serious underlying cause. “This means the pain is coming from the function of the spine and the supportive anatomy of the spine, such as muscles, joints and nerves. This is where chiropractors can be a huge help by working to restore proper alignment to the spine and relieving pressure on the nervous system.

This typically results in very positive outcomes for acute and chronic low back pain. Once this is under control, we can help with preventive, effective lifestyle strategies to help reduce the risk of low back pain recurrence. If you do experience low back pain, it’s important to have it checked out by a health care provider. “Even if you think your back pain is benign or trivial, we want to be able to rule out that something more serious is not going on,” he says. “Back pain is a lot easier to treat earlier on, before it becomes chronic.” He says there are several things you can do to prevent lower back pain, or at least lessen its impact: Exercise. Engage in low-impact aerobic activities, like walking or swimming, along with exercises specifically aimed at keeping your back and abdominal muscles strong and flexible. Use proper lifting technique. Use your legs, not your back, when lifting heavy items. Rather than bending over, keep your back straight and bend your knees.

Chiropractic is a healthcare discipline that emphasizes the power of the body to heal itself without the use of drugs or surgery. The practice of chiropractic focuses on the relationship between structure (primarily the spine) and function (as coordinated by the nervous

Maintain a healthy weight. Exercise and proper nutrition should help with this. Use proper posture. Keep your shoulders back and don’t slouch. Switch sitting positions often, and get up to walk around frequently. If possible, use a chair with good lumbar support (if needed, a pillow or rolled-up towel placed behind the small of your back can provide lumbar support). If you’ll be sitting for a long time, elevate your feet on a low stool or a stack of books. In addition to chiropractic adjustment, which involves using the hands or a device to apply a controlled, rapid force to a joint, Dr. Kulaga offers a variety of treatment options for back pain. These include electrotherapy, spinal decompression, therapeutic exercises, hydrotherapy, and ultrasound. For more information about treatment for low back pain, call Dr. Kulaga at Lake Charles Chiropractic and Functional Medicine at (337) 240-6619, ext. 2, or visit

system) and how that relationship affects the preservation and restoration of health. In addition, doctors of chiropractic recognize the value and responsibility of working in cooperation with other healthcare practitioners when in the best interest of the patient.

Being a chiropractor is one of the best jobs in the world. I get to see people’s quality of life improve daily. And that makes what I do so rewarding.” | (337) 240-6619 ext. 2 | 5656 Nelson Rd, Suite A1 | Lake Charles


Mind & Body | Back to Basics



“Antifragility is beyond resilience or robustness. The resilient resists shocks and stays the same; the antifragile gets better.” -- Nicholas Taleb When a stress is applied to a resilient body, it will bend and adapt to the stress but will not break. A non-resilient body will break in response to stress and injury can occur. The current mindset in medicine is one of being reactive. We wait until the body breaks down before we react. Chiropractic care is built on the idea of preventive care. Building the body up to prevent injury. The Resiliency Model is the idea of building up your resilience – physically through strength/stability/balance, physiologically through nutrition/supplements, even psychologically through mindfulness, so when either a potential or actual injury, or sickness occurs, the body can adapt and tolerate it. It is best viewed along a continuum from Recovery to Sustainability to Growth. The Recovery stage follows an injury to the body, physically, physiologically, or psychologically. Sustainability is being injury free but not Resilient. Growth is the long-term stage of continuing to become more Resilient. The Resiliency Model applies to more than rare occurrences like an accident or severe illness. This also applies to everyday ergonomic challenges. Much of what we don’t realize is the stress our ergonomics at our jobs place on our bodies. Does your back hurt after sitting at a computer all day? Do your shoulders hurt after stocking shelves at work? 40

Thrive Magazine for Better Living • August 2022

Do you regularly train for these activities? Resilience is being able to complete your day-to-day tasks without dysfunction or pain. The flip side to this coin is simply if your back hurts after sitting at a desk for eight hours but you can squat twice your body weight, are you training for the right thing? Are you building resilience for this task? If you look at the training schedules of different sports, there are some similarities but there are also some stark differences. In this clinic everyone is viewed as an athlete; we are all just at differing training levels. But are we training and building up the resilience we need to complete our day-to-day tasks in the best way possible? The end result, the goal of care, the idea of self-sufficiency, is what the Resiliency Model is about. Using an approach of Resiliency care to focus on overall health from a preventive mindset even immediately following an injury. We want to not only help our patients recover from injury but become more resilient and robust with their health and to help them become antifragile. Developing the habits which will continue through life to contribute to a healthier life. It’s not enough to just survive till death, it’s more important to thrive. To make the best of your life and feel the best through your life.

Becoming antifragile does not have to begin with an injury. Understanding there are stressors and events in life we can’t anticipate can drive people to want to become more resilient, more antifragile. This means instead of starting your journey at Recovery, start your journey at Sustainability with the knowledge you are preventing future health issues.

Thomas Edison stated in 1903, “The doctor of the future will give no medicine, but will interest his patient in the care of the human frame, in diet and in the cause and prevention of disease.” To make an appointment with Dr. Ryan Herold at Mayfield Chiropractic, located at 1709 W. Prien Lake Rd, Suite B, call 337-656-4514.

One More Reason to Choose the Center for Orthopaedics The Center for Orthopaedics proudly welcomes Dr. Bradley Jimerson, podiatric surgeon to our medical staff. • From Dallas, Texas • Bachelor of Science in Exercise Physiology, Oklahoma Baptist University, Shawnee, Oklahoma • Doctor of Podiatric Medicine, Des Moines University College of Podiatric Medicine and Surgery, Des Moines, Iowa • Podiatric Medicine and Surgical Residency, CHRISTUS Ochsner St. Patrick Hospital, Lake Charles, Louisiana For more information or to schedule an appointment with Dr. Jimerson, call the Center for Orthopaedics at (337) 721-7236 or visit



Mind & Body

Dr. TysonTake Green, your first step new surgeryto a better life.

Weight loss surgery isn’t an easy decision, but what is easy is wanting to live a better, healthier, longer and happier life. If you’re thinking about bariatric surgery, you probably feel like you’ve tried it all. Our program is designed to not only help you with the changes that you need to make, it also aims to educate you on the risks and benefits of a weight loss procedure.

Scan to learn more

For an appointment call 337.475.4170 or visit


Thrive Magazine for Better Living • August 2022 22-103005


Style & Beauty

by Kerry Andersen

The fade for men buzzed onto the scene in the 1940’s and 1950’s as the go-to hairstyle for military cadets looking for a stylish but low maintenance cut. The close cropped style has maintained popularity due in large part to its versatility. Short at the sides and back, the hair is cut progressively shorter as it tapers down the head in a fading effect that almost blends into the skin. Barbers on Broad owner Angie Stine says, “The fade is a classic cut because it flatters everyone, offers the flexibility to switch up your style at the top, and can be customized to suit your personality and the look you are going for.” Stine recommends consulting with a barber to determine which fade will flatter the shape of your face. There are essentially three types of fade haircuts to choose from, defined by the point on your head where the fade begins:


Low Fade – the most popular fade starting closer to the ear, it can be added to any men’s hairstyle for a fresh finish. This is a classic and timeless look.

Mid Fade – halfway between a high and low fade, it’s a tapered cut that ends between your temple and ears. It’s flattering, professional, easy to maintain and can be styled in many different ways.

High Fade – starts tapering way up high on the head near the temples or forehead and then gradually tapers off for a more dramatic look. A great pick for those who dare to be bold.

Thrive Magazine for Better Living • August 2022

The one downside of a fade is that it grows out quickly and needs to be maintained with a visit to the barber every two to three weeks. To keep it looking sharp between cuts, Stine recommends a pomade or hair gel to lock in your style and keep it fresh throughout the day.

Barbers on Broad is located at 102 W. Broad Street in Lake Charles and offers premium men’s haircuts, beard trims, straight razor shaves, and facial waxing. Open Tuesday through Friday from 9am to 7pm and Saturday from 9am to 5pm. Book an appointment at www.


It ’s not just a haircut, it s’ an Experience!


102 W Broad Street, Lake Charles, LA 70601 • (337) 429-5588


Style & Beauty

Game Da y Despite blazing summer temperatures outside, the kickoff to football season is fast approaching. Whether you plan to be in the stands cheering on your favorite college, pro, or high school team it’s time to huddle with fashion experts to assemble the spirited and chic looks that will score you extra style points in the bleachers. These fan friendly outfits are a surefire win whether you are tailgating, in the stands watching the game or at the after party!

Sparkle, Shine & Satin

Elm Boutique owner Jenee Wall says sequins, sparkles, feathers, and all things shiny are trending for game day looks this year. Team jerseys loaded with sequins will shine under the stadium lights. Shorts and tennis skirts remain popular, but this year look for them in nontraditional glossy satin fabrics and yes, more sequins. It’s your time to shine! Fun novelty earrings are the perfect way to complete your game day look. Beaded earrings are adorned with faux jewels in fun themed shapes like footballs and cowboy boots. Brightly colored feathers also add excitement to otherwise simple camisoles and tank tops.

Blazer Sets

Football fans looking for a more polished look at the stadium will love this season’s blazer sets. Classic blazers team up with shorts in a shade matching your school colors. Look for satin and charmeuse fabrics for a fashionista fan vibe. High waisted shorts and unstructured jackets with the sleeves rolled up will keep the look fresh and on trend. Pair the set with a simple tee, camisole or tube top worn under the jacket and give it a comfy vibe with casual white sneakers. One popular bonus of this look is pockets, always a win with female sports fans! 46

by Kerry Andersen

Spirited Straps

Stadium rules may dictate the size and shape of game day purses but that doesn’t mean they have to be boring. You can still make a statement with your clear bag by clicking on a custom strap. The colorful interchangeable straps are beaded, embroidered, and embellished. Choose your school colors or name, tiger stripes for LSU, blue and gold prints for McNeese or metallic black and gold options for Saints fans. The options are endless and you can switch the purse straps out easily and quickly for every game!

Leather Looks

Pair all those shiny team tops with leather and faux leather bottoms for one of the trendiest game day looks of 2022. Dress up your favorite college tee with a short leather skirt, tennis skirt or shorts. Top the leather look off with the footwear of the season – booties or cowboy boots in matching team colors (often embellished with rhinestones for extra bling). Style note: new faux leather fabric options are affordable and look like the real thing, but you can toss them in the washing machine!

Thrive Magazine for Better Living • August 2022

Cropped, Cut and Tied Tees

Mia’s Downtown owner Mia MoutonRene’ says new game day looks are steadily arriving to her Lake Charles boutique and while team tees are always a top choice for stadium wear, she says this year’s tops are anything but basic. Standard game day tees this year glimmer with sequins and feature cool cut out designs. The ends are snipped, tied, and knotted creating fun movement. Do it yourself fans can grab their favorite school shirt and splatter it with bleach, dunk it in tie dye or use scissors to cut out their own custom designs. Update an old sweatshirt or tee by cutting off the bottom and turning it into a crop top, tube top, or halter top. Pair them with flouncy skirts, shiny shorts, or denim mini’s.

Denim for the Win

Denim is always comfortable and appropriate at the stadium. Pair this season’s cropped tees with cutoff denim shorts or short distressed denim skirts. For another fun denim look, wear a croppedoff team tee or tube top underneath a pair of blue jean overall shorts. Add knee high socks in your school colors for a fun retro look.

Elm Boutique is located at 1613 Elton Road (Suite B), Jennings. Open Tuesday to Friday from 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. and Saturday 10:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. or shop online at www. . Mia’s Downtown is located at 318 Pujo Street, Lake Charles. Open Tuesday to Friday from 10:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. and Saturdays from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Glow where Life takes you!

Keep your skin healthy and glowing wherever your life takes you with help from The Skin Studios. We offer advanced treatment options and high-quality products in addition to physician-directed care featuring innovative, proven techniques. Get the care of a physician and comfort of a spa at The Skin Studios. | Lake Charles | (337) 474-1220


Places & Faces

FOOTBALL GOLD You can feel it in the air. Anticipation builds as football fans buy their season tickets and ponder how their favorite teams will perform on the gridiron this year. There are lots of changes to report for Southwest Louisiana’s top teams – McNeese, LSU, and the Saints. Writer Matt Dye gives us all the details, plus his own insider predictions. In this annual special section, you’ll also discover the best places to watch the game and find some grub; and you’ll get to know McNeese ‘s long-time athletics radio broadcaster, Tom Hoefer, in our First Person Q&A. Go teams!


Thrive Magazine for Better Living • August 2022



AUG 19TH @ 9AM

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Places & Faces | FOOTBALL GOLD

Lights Up on the


“It’s going to be an exciting brand of football,” new McNeese head coach Gary Goff promises. “We’re going to attack on both sides. The Air Raid gets a lot of attention, but there will be a lot of pressure on the defensive side.” Exciting and new is exactly what the McNeese Cowboys need after a few dismal seasons and changes at head coach, but now, just as the lights at The Hole shine again, things are beginning anew under a new regime. Gary Goff comes from building a championship level program at Valdosta State and is committed to doing the same here at McNeese. “I can tell you, you’ve got stability. I’m here for the long haul.” One thing in Goff’s favor is that he inherited a veteran, and now healthy, O-line to run his Air Raid offense behind, led by pre-season First Teamer Caron Coleman and Second Teamer Calvin Barkat.The question is, who will be throwing the ball for the Cowboys? Goff’s Air Raid offense doesn’t yet have a full-time commander, as the Cowboys are looking to a new starting quarterback for the first time since 2016. Right now, there are three candidates to lead this run ‘n gun offense. Walker Wood is the closest thing to an incumbent, having played a little quarterback before playing wide receiver last season. He’s switched back to QB and will compete against Cam Ransom, a transfer from Georgia Southern and dual-threat option, and Knox Kadum, a transfer from Virginia Tech who ran the Air Raid in high school.


Thrive Magazine for Better Living • August 2022

“I’m excited about the offense,” said Mason Pierce, Second Team wide receiver and First Team returner. “He’s brought in my type of style.” A second-generation Cowboy, he’s all about the team mentality. “You can’t really focus on one player. We’ve got a lot of people that can make plays. As soon as we mesh together, it’s going to be a really good year for us.” Carrying the rock will be another Southland pre-season First Teamer in Deonta McMahon. McMahon led the Cowboys in rushing last season while scoring a team high eight touchdowns. The defense will be led by three pre-season First Teamers in D-lineman Mason Kinsey and Accord Green, and linebacker Kordell Williams, who is just 80 tackles away from joining McNeese’s 300-Club. “The biggest thing is being consistent,” defensive end C.J. Semien said of playing for Coach Goff. “Every day reminding everyone of the culture we’re working toward.” McNeese opens the season with two out of conference road games, the first against FCS runner-up Montana State, followed by one at Rice. These games will not only be a test for Goff’s squad but also a litmus test for their toughness, as they will likely be heavy underdogs. Then, in some of the best news of all, the Cowboys come home on September 17 to play Alcorn State under the lights in The Hole for the first time in three years. “We’re not playing at noon with the sun above our faces the whole time,” Pierce said, recalling last season. “It was hot. The cool conditions really help for a team, so it’s going to be fun.”

by Matt Dye

Semien agrees. “The atmosphere for a night game is different than a day game. The fans are more excited, there’s tailgating. It’s going to be more electric for the players and the fans as well.” From there, another home game against Mississippi College before the Cowboys start conference play on the road against last year’s conference champ, Incarnate Word. Then it’s five more conference games and a home game against Eastern Illinois that culminates in the renewed rivalry match-up at home against Lamar on November 19. With the realignment of the Southland Conference in the last two years, and the mercurial nature of the conference in general, it’s anyone’s guess how Goff’s first year might go, but he’s got a whole city behind him for support. “Lake Charles is a special city,” Goff said. “They’ve really opened the doors to our families. And they have a true passion for McNeese athletics. I’m anxious to see these fans come out and pack The Hole and help us get some wins.” Due to late conference schedule finalization, the TV schedule isn’t set, but every game should be available either via ESPN+ or Cox YurView. To order season tickets, call 337-562-4678 or go online, Or check out the 337 Package. You’ll get a reserved season football ticket, men’s and women’s basketball season ticket, baseball season ticket and softball season ticket, all for just $337. It comes out to about $3.50 per ticket per game!

Geaux Pokes!

McNeese head coach Gary Goff

MCNEESE SCHEDULE Week 1 Week 2 Week 3 Week 4 Week 5 Week 6 Week 7 Week 8 Week 9 Week 10 Week 11 Week 12

Sept. 3 Sept. 10 Sept. 17 Sept. 24 Oct. 1 Oct. 8 Oct. 15 Oct. 22 Oct. 29 Nov. 5 Nov. 12 Nov. 19

@ Montana State @ Rice vs. Alcorn State vs. Mississippi College @ Incarnate Word BYE vs. Texas A&M-Commerce @ Nicholls vs, Southeastern (Homecoming) vs. Eastern Illinois @ Houston Baptist vs. Lamar


Places & Faces | FOOTBALL GOLD


Brian Kelly Comes to Town It’s hard to believe The Tigers are two years removed from being one of the greatest teams in college history. In some ways, it feels longer after a 5-5 and then 6-6 season that saw Coach O go from King of Louisiana to just somebody who used to coach. LSU will begin the Brian Kelly era, a decision that at first had many fans questioning. After personalities such as Les Miles and Coach O, Kelly is decidedly boring, so much so that videos of him trying to dance with recruits blew up Twitter. But make no mistake, Kelly is just what the LSU program needs; a program that in some ways has been too full of itself for a while, allowing all sorts of shady business under the guise of winning. Detractors will point out that Kelly coached at Notre Dame but could never win it all, but these fans are lost in the days when Notre Dame was like the entire SEC conference unto itself. Instead, Kelly helmed that ship with some of the strictest recruiting standards in the country to finish consistently in the Top 10. Now, without those handcuffs, it will be interesting to see what teams Brian Kelly will build in the future at LSU. The present though is a huge question, with uncertainty everywhere for this current LSU team.


Thrive Magazine for Better Living • August 2022

There’s no doubt that Kelly inherited a ton of talent; it’s just how that talent fits his system that we’re going to find out.If it starts at the quarterback, at the time of this writing, LSU might have narrowed it down to three. There’s Myles Brennan, who because of COVID-19 is a sixth-year senior. The assumption is that he’ll get the job just because of his tenure with the team, but there’s no guarantee that’s how Kelly will roll. The other two candidates are Jayden Daniels, a transfer from Arizona State, and Garrett Nussmeier, a redshirt freshman gunslinger who’s looked to have potential in his few opportunities so far. Whoever gets the nod at QB, they’ll at least be throwing to Kayshon Boutte, LSU Pre-season 1st Team All-SEC Team pick. And if LSU can keep being WR-U, one of the sophomores from Brian Thomas Jr., Malik Nabors, or Jack Bech should step up. LSU fans have been waiting for John Emery, a five-star recruit in 2019, to explode at the running back position, and this may finally be the season for it. If not, look for Corey Kiner or Armoni Goodwin, both sophomores with major upside. The defense, as always, should be strong for the Tigers, starting with the big guys up front led by defensive first team selection BJ Ojulari. Mike Jones Jr. leads a strong linebacking core that should contain the middle of the field well. The question comes from an all-new secondary that lost players such as Derek

by Matt Dye

Stingley last season. The new starters come from the transfer portal, so there’s no way to know yet how they’re going to fare in SEC ball when they’re facing guys like Bryce Young. The schedule this year at least works to LSU’s advantage in the beginning. The season opens September 4 in the MercedesBenz Superdome against the Florida State Seminoles. While not a home game, it should feel like one, and while FSU opened the checkbooks to be competitive again after four losing seasons in a row, LSU should still come out victorious. Then it’s three real home games in a row, with the SEC opener against Mississippi State. Best case scenario, the Tigers could find themselves 4-0 heading into October and the real meat of the schedule. At that point, many of these games will be toss-ups, with home games against Tennessee and Ole Miss and road games at Auburn and the Swamp. If by some miracle the Tigers make it 8-0, it’ll probably all come crashing down when Bama comes to visit on November 5. Then there’s one more cupcake sandwiched between two harder-than-they-should-be road games to finish the season at Arkansas and Texas A&M respectively. A true purple and gold fan will have them going 12-0. An optimist might say 9-3. But a realist will tell you 7-5 with hope for the future.

Go Tigers!

LSU SCHEDULE Week 1 Week 2 Week 3 Week 4 Week 5 Week 6 Week 7 Week 8 Week 9 Week 10 Week 11 Week 12 Week 13

Sept. 4 Sept. 10 Sept. 17 Sept. 24 Oct. 1 Oct. 8 Oct. 15 Oct. 22 Oct. 29 Nov. 5 Nov. 12 Nov. 19 Nov. 26

LSU head coach Brian Kelly

FSU (in NOLA) vs. Southern vs. Mississippi State vs. New Mexico @ Auburn vs. Tennessee @ Florida vs. Ole Miss BYE vs. Alabama @ Arkansas vs. UAB @ Texas A&M

2022 Keynote Speaker


8:00am - 4:00pm

Featuring Various Inspirational Workshops Save the Date!


Places & Faces | FOOTBALL GOLD


SAINTS They just might surprise you this year by Matt Dye

After 16 years, a new era in Saints’ lore starts this season as we have said goodbye to not only Drew Brees but now also Sean Payton. Dennis Allen takes over Head coaching duties after spending the last six years as the Saints’ defensive coordinator. This will be Allen’s second chance as a head coach, his first time with the Raiders in 2012, and the 2nd stint is usually when a head coach catches fire. His defense has certainly been on fire. For those who stayed with the team through all the struggles of last season (Saints still went 9-8), the one consistent positive was the defense. And that defense now looks to be better than last year, even with the loss of Marcus Williams to free agency and Malcolm Jenkins to retirement. Most fans already know about The Honey Badger, Tyrann Mathieu, coming back to the bayou to take what he wants, but the Saints secondary also adds veterans Marcus Maye and Daniel Sorensen to help shore up a pass defense that still must face Tom Brady twice a season. With Cam Jordan and Marcus Davenport controlling the line, the Saints defense should again be more than capable of keeping them in games. 54

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The biggest question mark is on the offense, which was hampered by injuries in the first season without Brees at the helm. Four different QBs saw playing time as Jameis Winston suffered a torn ACL in Week 8 against the Bucs. Fans finally got to see what Taysom Hill as a full-time QB looked like, and they weren’t impressed. And last year’s rookie Ian Book appears to have a lot of room to grow. Injury also kept out the Saints’ most potent weapons in Alvin Kamara for a few games and Michael Thomas for the season. This season, everyone should be healthy, and the Saints have also made great additions at receiver, bringing back another LSU boy in Jarvis Landry and drafting Chris Olave out of Ohio State, who should contribute immediately. Assuming Winston stays healthy, he should have more than enough weapons to take this Saints team back to the playoffs. To do that, they’ll again need to get through divisional opponents in the Bradyled Bucs. For 41 days, the NFC South felt like it was up in the air as Brady retired, but that didn’t last long, and the Bucs look to repeat as division winners. New Orleans’ other two divisional rivals are also on the come-up, with the Carolina Panthers bringing in Progressive commercial star Baker Mayfield to try to

right the ship and the Atlanta Falcons going with former Heisman Trophy Winner and Winston draft contemporary Marcus Mariota. Both of these organizations are hungry to get back to being competitive, with neither team posting a winning record since 2017. That said, the Saints divisional road may be very clear after opening the first three weeks of the season with all three divisional opponents. A 1-2 start could mean a rough road to the Wild Card for the Saints. After that, the schedule doesn’t let up, with a trip to London in October to play Minnesota before coming home to host the Super Bowl runner-up Cincinnati Burrows. Then the 2nd half of the season is even more brutal with five of their final eight games on the road against teams such as the Steelers, 49ers, Bucs, and Eagles; the latter three being possible playoff matchups. The Saints’ potential will largely lie on how healthy they can stay, but right now, no one outside of Louisiana is expecting much from a team a year removed from Payton and Brees.

But that’s the way they like it. Projected Record: 11-6



Week 1 Week 2 Week 3

Aug. 13 Aug. 19 Aug. 26

Saints head coach Dennis Allen

@ Houston @ Green Bay vs. L.A. Chargers

Regular Season

Week 1 Week 2 Week 3 Week 4 Week 5 Week 6 Week 7 Week 8 Week 9 Week 10 Week 11 Week 12 Week 13 Week 14 Week 15 Week 16 Week 17 Week 18

Sept. 11 Sept. 18 Sept. 25 Oct. 2 Oct. 9 Oct. 16 Oct. 20 Oct. 30 Nov. 7 Nov. 13 Nov. 20 Nov. 27 Dec. 5 BYE Dec. 18 Dec. 24 Jan. 1 Jan. 8

@ Atlanta vs. Tampa Bay @ Carolina vs. Minnesota (in London) vs. Seattle vs. Cincinnati @ Arizona vs. Las Vegas vs. Baltimore @ Pittsburgh vs. L.A. Rams @ San Francisco @ Tampa Bay

vs. Atlanta @ Cleveland @ Philadelphia vs. Carolina

NOW ENROLLING Two Years Through 11th Grade


Two Year Olds - 6th Grade 803 N. Division Street Lake Charles

pen Now O


7th - 11th Grade 5665 N. Gray Market Drive Lake Charles

EDS does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national and ethnic origin, or gender in admission of its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs and athletic and other school administered programs.


Bishop Noland Episcopal Day School provides academic excellence to a diverse student body in a Christian environment.


Places & Faces |


first person


by Angie Kay Dilmore

As a child, Tom Hoefer loved sports, though he realized early on he was better at listening or watching sports than playing them. If there was a sporting event taking place, he and his brother were either watching it on TV or listening to the play-by-plays on the radio. Football, baseball, and hockey were their favorites. Hoefer (pronounced HAY-fer) idolized radio sports announcers and dreamed of becoming a radio sports broadcaster himself one day. It doesn’t happen often in life, but Hoefer made his childhood dream come true. 56

Thrive Magazine for Better Living • August 2022

His first foray into the field of sports announcing came in his senior year of high school. He covered a girls’ basketball game for his classmates. Hoefer also worked at a radio station during high school in his hometown of Salem, Illinois. He says he did a little bit of everything at the station, from news and disc jockey to sports and production, gaining valuable experience that set the stage for a lifelong career. Hoefer attended Eastern Illinois University and graduated in 1985 with a degree in journalism. After briefly returning to Salem’s radio station, he moved to Selma, Alabama, where he served in a variety of roles at a station there.

Hoefer moved to Lake Charles in 1988 and worked at radio station LA99. There, he met Kaye Billeaudeaux, whom he married in 1992. He advanced his career at LA99, becoming program director and later sales manager. But in 1997, an opportunity arose that he couldn’t pass up. The Ice Pirates! Lake Charles’ very own indoor hockey team moved into the Civic Center and needed a radio announcer. Hoefer says he begged Thom Hager to let him do it, and it was great fun while it lasted. The franchise folded after four years on the ice.

In 2000, Hoefer was hired by KPLC, but something more life changing also happened that year. After a decade or more of bidding, LA99 finally won the contract to broadcast McNeese’s athletic games. And Hoefer was their man to do it. Hoefer is now in his 23rd year of announcing play-by-plays for McNeese games. He is currently under contract with McNeese and covers football on 92.9 The Lake. Hoefer does have a day job, as well. He’s been with the Calcasieu Parish Police Jury for 17 years and is currently their Director of Communications & Media. Thrive magazine recently spoke with Tom, and he shared his passion for sports, his enthusiasm for serving his community, and his pro tips on being a transplant in Southwest Louisiana.

Tell us more details about your childhood fascination with sports.

I was a sports fan from a very young age. I had some favorite announcers I’d listen to – Jack Buck with the St. Louis Cardinals; Dan Kelly announced the hockey games for the St. Louis Blues. Bob Costas got his start with the Spirit of St. Louis basketball team. As a young person dreaming of becoming a radio guy, I patterned myself after these announcers. It was always radio – I was never interested in television, only radio.

What brought you to Southwest Louisiana?

George Swift, president/CEO at the Chamber SWLA, was the man who brought me to Louisiana. When I was working at the station in Selma, George stopped by to visit one day. He had been the general manager at that station prior to moving to Lake Charles. He eventually hired me to move to Lake Charles and work for him at LA99. He wanted me to get the McNeese games broadcast on that station. It took a while, but it happened. George is a good friend and mentor and I owe him a lot.

What are your expectations for McNeese’s 2022 football season?

As many of you know, the Cowboy Stadium press box was destroyed in Hurricane Laura. We’ve been temporarily broadcasting play-byplays from the Cowboy Room at the south end of the field. It is definitely more difficult to do my job when I’m looking from the end zone instead of the side. But the new press box won’t be completed until sometime in 2023. I’m excited that my alma mater, Eastern Illinois University, plays McNeese at MSU this year. Of course, I’m rooting for the Pokes! And McNeese plays EIU at EIU in 2023. Can’t wait to go!

Tell us about your role at the Police Jury and what do you find most rewarding about your position.

I joined the staff at the Police Jury in 2005, right before Hurricane Rita. My first job there was to manage C-GOV, their government TV channel. Years later, they added public relations to the position. The most rewarding times tend to also be the most difficult times. I helped with public information after Rita and of course the hurricanes in 2020. When people are desperate for information, they want to know what’s happening in their town, when will the power be restored . . . that is when I feel the most useful. It’s sweaty, and stressful, and difficult to be here, but those are the times I feel I have made a difference for people.

Got any hobbies?

I collect old beer cans from the 1930s through 1960s. And I run. I used to run marathons – I ran 12 marathons between 2008 and 2014. Then I ran out of cartilage, which apparently you need! I still run 15-20 miles a week, just to keep in shape and stay sane. It’s cheaper than Prozac.

What advice would you give a newcomer to Southwest Louisiana? Learn how to

pronounce boudin. Once you have boudin down, all the other Cajun words will be a lot easier. Enjoy and appreciate the local culture. It is unique and you won’t find it anywhere else. And . . . evacuate for hurricanes.

Tom with Ron Hayes, Kip Texada and Justin Toney in their temporary press box in the Cowboy Club. Photo credit Dennis Thibodeaux

57 57

Places Faces | FOOTBALL GOLD Places&& Faces | FOOTBALL


GAME DAY Grub & Gatherings by Katelynn Mouton

Looking forward to watching your favorite teams on the gridiron this fall, but don’t want the hassle of cooking and cleaning up after the game? These six local eateries will help you get a jump-start on making your game day plans for the season.

BARSTOOL SPORTSBOOK Located inside L’auberge Casino Resort Lake Charles, Barstool Sportsbook, formerly known as Jack Daniel’s Bar and Grill, offers a sports betting experience to cover virtually every game around and if game day bets aren’t your thing, they offer a menu to appeal to every taste. From nachos, burgers, salads and wings to beer, wine, specialty cocktails and more, this game day experience is one for the books.

BLUE MARTINI If a nightlife-style game day experience is more your scene, Blue Martini at Golden Nugget Hotel & Casino also provides a sports betting experience along with a special sports book menu. Check out their chicken nacho bites or a serving of chicken wings while you sip on an MVP cocktail during the game. nightlife/blue-martini/

BUFFALO WILD WINGS Buffalo Wild Wings has been a go-to location for game day experiences, no matter the sport, for many years. In November of 2021, this team moved to their brand-new, larger location on L’Auberge Boulevard. Multiple big screen televisions in a variety of dining room experiences means diners are sure to find a great spot to sit, relax and enjoy the game. Wings, of course, are the name of the game here, but appetizers, hot dogs and burgers grace the menu as well. Order a wing bundle or two, or a party platter for you and your friends. Save room for a drink and dessert. Kids’ menu items, salads and wraps are also available.

DARRELL’S Any list of local places to catch a game would be incomplete without this long-time community staple. From the Darrell’s Special with jalapeno mayonnaise to the BBQ, Surf ‘n Turf and more, there are plenty of mouthwatering sandwiches to keep you coming back weekend after weekend. Just make sure to grab a stack of napkins to soak up all the extra sauce as you sink your teeth into Darrell’s famous buttery French bread. Sip on an ice cold drink and cheer your favorite team on to victory at their College Street location in Lake Charles. They are closed on Sundays so this is definitely the place to be for College Game Day on Saturdays. Call 337-474-3651 for hours, specials and more.


Thrive Magazine for Better Living • August 2022





FAT PAT’S BAR AND GRILL A relative newcomer to the area, Fat Pat’s opened their Lake Charles restaurant in December 2021 on Dillard Loop in the Power Centre. This Lafayette-based full-service restaurant and sports bar offers an expansive climate-controlled green area and more than 40 televisions. In addition to the hot and fresh food, including seafood, wraps, po’boys and burgers, there are also activities and games to keep the whole family entertained. Fat Pat’s features two-for-one specials on draft beer, margaritas, wine and mimosas daily.

WALK-ON’S SPORTS BISTREAUX Walk-On’s provides a game viewing experience with a side of tasty dishes. Located on Common Street in South Lake Charles, the Baton Rouge-based franchise describes itself as a game day experience with a taste of Louisiana. From gathering with family to celebrate birthdays and anniversaries, to meeting up with friends to catch the game on one of their many big screen televisions, patrons of the restaurant can expect a menu that offers a wide variety of options. Specials are available throughout the year, including Sunday Funday Specials that serve up $3 Bloody Mary’s and $10 Mimosa Pitchers.


We are now available on Eats 2 Go, Gubers & Waitr!

119 West College Street, Lake Charles | (337) 474-3651 | Monday – Thursday: 11am–10pm | Friday & Saturday: 11am-11pm Closed Sunday | Happy Hour 4–7pm



Thursday, November 10, 2022 L’Auberge Casino Resort Tickets Available August 18: Sponsorship Opportunities Still Available – Call (337) 602-6788


Wining & Dining

It’s a Vibe! Chef Nate Winters


Lizard BAR & GRILL

at Delta Downs Racetrack Casino Hotel by Stefanie Powers This summer just got a lot more fun! Delta Downs Racetrack Casino Hotel in Vinton, La. recently opened a new dining and drinking experience that you don’t want to miss. Tin Lizard Bar & Grill made its debut on June 30 and is a casual American restaurant specializing in modern cuisine with an extensive craft beer and cocktail selection. “Tin Lizard’s space includes a stunningly detailed center bar that features revolving brews on tap and a spacious main dining room with ample seating,” says Joshua Britt, spokesperson for Delta Downs. “The venue is conveniently located off the casino floor, in the Main Promenade.” Previously known as the Gator Lounge, the space has undergone extensive renovation. “The design showcases modern elements accented with brick and wood-plank walls 60

Thrive Magazine for Better Living • August 2022

and contemporary art and décor throughout the space,” Britt says. “Twenty large-screen televisions are stationed throughout the bar and restaurant for you to catch all the sports action.” Tin Lizard Bar & Grill features mainstream favorites, as well as specialty dishes, prepared under the watchful eye of Chef Nate Winters, who’s been with Delta Downs for 16 years. A Lake Charles native currently residing in Sulphur, Winters says that his cooking experience came from working in professional kitchens under great chefs. “I fell in love with cooking when I was 19, working for Chef Kevin Thompson,” he recalls. “He is a very accomplished, creative, and nurturing chef. It was then that my passion was born. It sparked a desire for food that I didn’t know existed.” After discovering his passion, Winters attended SOWELA Technical Community College where he earned his degree in Culinary Arts.

Winters is excited about the whole concept of Tin Lizard. “It’s a vibe!” he exclaims. “It has a fun and upbeat atmosphere, unique cocktails, and delicious food that guests will love and come back for. I feel we’ve created something that people will really enjoy.” Starters include boudin egg rolls, Idaho potato skins and blackened crawfish queso with house-made queso, blackened crawfish tails, creole tomatoes, jalapeno and cilantro corn chips. The main menu includes handcrafted pizzas, sauced and dry-rubbed wings, soups and salads, burgers and sandwiches and more. Featured signature dishes include pepperoni pizza with San Marzano tomato sauce, pepperoni and oregano; the Jackpot Burger, an eight-ounce Angus beef patty with applewood-smoked bacon, cheddar, pepper jack, onion rings and barbecue sauce; and the fried catfish dinner.

Crawfish Queso

Bank Happy. Bank Lakeside.

Catfish Dinner

Crawfish Etouffee

There’s something for everyone on the drink menu, from old standards such the Negroni and Old Fashioned to the Raspberry Lemon Drop. Featured cocktails include the refreshing Middleton Mule and the Captain Punch made with Captain Morgan Rum, triple sec, orange juice, pineapple juice and splash of grenadine. A quality selection of craft, domestic and imported brews are available with multiple brews on tap, including Blue Moon, Shiner Bock, Yuengling, Abita Purple Haze and more. The brew bottle menu features 11 selections comprised of regional and national favorites. Tin Lizard Bar & Grill is open from Sunday to Thursday from 11:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m. and Friday and Saturday from 11:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. To learn more about Tin Lizard Bar & Grill, visit

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MYLKSB.BANK | (337) 474-3766


Wining & Dining

Recovery Spotlight

Pronia’s Deli by Angie Kay Dilmore

Quintessential entrepreneurs with a long and varied list of businesses under their belt, Leroy Pronia and his wife, Annette, opened Pronia’s Deli in 1989. It’s a family business with three generations employed in the company. Even some of their young grandchildren don aprons and help out during the summer months. Though the business is now run by his children, at age 84, Mr. Pronia still comes into work every day. “I like to keep a hand in things,” he said. 2020 was an exceptionally tragic year for this family patriarch. He lost his beloved Annette in February. The COVID-19 pandemic hit in March, and in August Hurricane Laura devastated the popular Kirkman St. deli. The Pronia family weathered the pandemic better than some restaurant owners. “We were fortunate,” said Pronia. “We already had a drive-thru window.” Pick up orders sustained the business throughout that spring and summer. But the Hurricane destroyed their building. “All that was left was three walls and the metal frame,” Pronia said. Even prior to the events of 2020, Mr. Pronia and his son-in-law, Bryan Bergeron, who manages the restaurant and bakery, had planned to expand the establishment. The storm gave them the opportunity for more than an expansion, but instead, a total rebuild. They expanded the restaurant space to include the bakery onsite (it had previously been next door). 62

Thrive Magazine for Better Living • August 2022

& Bakery They enlarged the dining area by 50% and added a wide outdoor patio at the entrance. They enhanced the kitchen by adding more coolers, freezers, and better ovens. And they increased their parking capacity to 64 vehicles. As many businesses experienced, recovery was not without its challenges. “It took me seven months to get my permits,” said Pronia. “And it took 16 months to complete the new building.” They wisely bought most of their materials, equipment, and furnishings early in the process, saving them thousands of dollars, as the costs of most everything escalated quickly. The Pronias are transforming the building that had been their bakery into an event center called The Venue at Pronia’s. “It’s a perfect location for weddings, birthday and anniversary parties, showers,” said Bergeron. They also plan to have live music and dining on Saturdays. One thing that has remained the same at Pronia’s is their commitment to quality food and some old family recipes. Leroy Pronia is a second-generation immigrant from Italy. They bake the sandwich bread fresh daily from the same recipe brought over from the homeland. Pronia’s is located at 3021 Kirkman St. Find them on Facebook. Call 337-478-0785 to place an order.

post hurricane laura


Places & Faces

Movers and Shakers in Southwest Louisiana... Who’s News? You tell us! Send press releases to

FINANCIAL PLANNER professional, and holds a Certified Plan Fiduciary Advisor designation from NAPA, the National Association of Plan Advisors. Mitchell Woods brings more than five years of experience to Raymond James, all with Merrill Lynch. A graduate of LSU, Mitchell is a board member for Fusion Five Southwest Louisiana’s young professionals’ organization. Mitchell Woods

Tim Woods

Blake Brignac

Debbie Ardoin

Woods Brignac advisor team joins Raymond James & Associates Raymond James & Associates announced that Tim Woods, Blake Brignac, CFP® and Mitchell Woods, Mackenzie Wright CFP® have joined the firm in establishing its first office in Southwest Louisiana. The advisor team – now known as Woods Brignac Wealth Management of Raymond James is joined in transition by client service associates Debbie Ardoin and Mackenzie Wright. The five-person team is now welcoming clients at its office at 3220 Second Avenue. Prior to joining Raymond James, the Woods Brignac team worked with Merrill Lynch. Tim Woods, a 23-year veteran of the financial services industry, also spent 18 years as a CPA before becoming an advisor. Brignac brings nearly 10 years of advisory experience to Raymond James. A graduate of Louisiana State University, Blake is a CERTIFIED


Thrive Magazine for Better Living • August 2022

West Calcasieu Cameron Hospital Announces Promotion of Ames to Nursing Leadership Team West Calcasieu Cameron Hospital (WCCH) is pleased to announce that Angelia ‘Angie’ Ames, RN, has Angie Ames been promoted to medical surgical & medical telemetry nursing manager. Ames will provide clinician direction and leadership for the med/surg and med/ telemetry departments in her new role. Ames has served in various nursing capacities and brings over eight years of nursing experience to her new position, with the past four years as a member of the WCCH med/surg department. She earned her ADN degree from McNeese State University and holds BLS/ACLS/PALS/MOAB/CPI certifications. Burton Completes Chief Information Officer Program Charles Burton, Technology Director for Calcasieu Parish Police Jury has graduated from the Certified Government Chief Information Charles Burton Officer (CGCIO) program through Rutgers University Center for Government Services and CompTIA Public Technology Institute (PTI).

Charles Burton is recognized among a growing group of technology executives seeking to improve their technology leadership skills. The program is designed to address the most critical issues facing IT executives in the public sector. This year-long course comprises 240 contact hours that take the form of reading and written assignments; 9 monthly live, online classes; 3 full days of class; self-paced online coursework; and finally, a Capstone Project. Charles Burton has led technology teams in Louisiana government for more than 15 years. He is a McNeese State University alumnus as well as receiving a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science from University of Phoenix and a Master of Science in Cybersecurity from the University of South Florida. He holds several industry certifications including ITIL, PMP, CGCIO, CISSP, CompTIA as well as Microsoft certificates. Mr. Burton serves on several boards and committees including Louisiana Digital Government Advisory Board, McNeese State University and SOWELA technical Community College Computer Science Advisory Boards, NACo Information Technology Standing Committee, SWLA Economic Development Alliance Technology Council chair.

Beth Dawdy

Lake Charles Symphony Hires Beth Dawdy as Executive Director The Lake Charles Symphony recently hired Beth Dawdy as the executive director of the organization, which is celebrating its 65th season

through 2023. Dawdy is an accomplished business executive with over 25 years of marketing, management, and event planning as the general manager of Treasures of Marilyn’s and Marilyn’s Flowers & Catering. Her experience with successfully planning and executing thousands of corporate events, weddings,

meetings, and conventions along with strong management skills have prepared her for this dynamic position of leadership for the organization and within the community. Dawdy joined the Lake Charles Symphony as the executive director just in time for the Summer Pops concert featuring the Symphony of Illusions Show with Michael Grandinetti as the guest magician who dazzled crowds with stunning feats of magic.

Sami Bourgeois

Matthew Lovejoy

West Calcasieu Cameron Hospital Announces New Providers for Rural Health Centers Sami Bourgeois, APRN, joins Lance Waldmeier, APRN, as a member of the Vinton Medical Clinic patient care team. Bourgeois brings more than eleven years of direct patient care experience to her new role, serving nine of those years as a nurse practitioner in a clinic setting. She holds Bachelor of Science in Nursing and Master of Nursing degrees from McNeese State University. The Vinton Medical Clinic is located at 1611 Hampton Street in Vinton. Sameday appointments are available. For more information, call (337) 589-5951. Matthew Lovejoy, APRN, joins the Hackberry Rural Health Clinic of WCCH patient care team. Lovejoy brings over nine years of patient care experience to the clinic as the primary provider for the Hackberry clinic. He specializes in emergent and urgent care. Lovejoy holds Bachelor of Science in Nursing and Master of Nursing degrees from McNeese State University.

The Hackberry Rural Health Clinic is located at 1020 Main Street in Hackberry. Sameday appointments are available. For more information, call (337) 762-3762. Dr. Bradley Jimerson Joins Center for Orthopaedics The Center for Orthopaedics has announced the addition of Bradley Jimerson, DPM, foot and ankle specialist, to their medical staff. Bradley Jimerson Originally from Dallas, Texas, Dr. Jimerson received a Bachelor of Science in Exercise Physiology from Oklahoma Baptist University in Shawnee, Oklahoma. He then earned his Doctor of Podiatric Medicine degree from Des Moines University College of Podiatric Medicine and Surgery in Des Moines, Iowa. He is a recent graduate of the CHRISTUS Ochsner St. Patrick Hospital Podiatric Medicine and Surgical Residency Program in Lake Charles, Louisiana. Dr. Jimerson is a member of the American Podiatric Medical Association and is an associate with the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons. He has a special interest in orthopedic foot and ankle conditions and sports medicine. Dr. Jimerson joins Dr. Tyson Green and Dr. Kalieb Pourciau in the foot and ankle specialty area of the Center for Orthopaedics. He sees patients in the group's offices in Lake Charles, Jennings, and Moss Bluff. Call (337) 7621-7236 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Jimerson or visit

Brian Abshire

Lacy Viator

Investar Welcomes Brian Abshire as Southwest Louisiana Market President and Lacy Viator Commercial Portfolio Administrator Investar Bank, National Association (“Investar”) hired Brian Abshire as its new Southwest Louisiana Market President and Senior Vice President. Abshire has 28 years of banking experience. He joins Investar most recently from First Horizon Bank where he was a Commercial Relationship Manager in Lake Charles for the past 10 years. As the Southwest Louisiana Market President, Abshire will oversee Investar’s current and future Lake Charles market area footprint. He will be based in the Country Club Road branch. Abshire will be responsible for growing the Bank’s market share through expanding existing relationships while developing new opportunities with prospective clients. Joining Abshire as a Commercial Portfolio Administrator is Lacy Viator. She has 14 years of banking experience and has worked in various retail roles as a Teller, Assistant Branch Manager and Relationship Banker. Most recently Viator has been a Commercial Relationship Administrator for the past five years at First Horizon Bank alongside Abshire. She will continue supporting Abshire and their client relationships.



for life


from Solutions Counseling & EAP by Keri Forbess-McCorquodale, MS, LPC, LMFT, CEAP

Wow, Did You Mess Up! Uh-oh. Big mistake. Really big mistake. And at work, of all places! Now what? Do you try to hide it and hope no one discovers it? Do you deny it if you are confronted? Aauugghh! Panic mode engaged!! Remember that time your co-worker accidentally sent out that salary information to everyone in the organization? Or how about the time your company got audited and you had let some things slip through the cracks over time? Or maybe your staff did not handle something correctly, but you are the one who got called in for a “discussion” about it? Some of you are cringing as you read this. You remember all too well that time you really messed up at work. I can think of a few times I have done the same. Calm down. Everyone messes up. It’s not fun, but it is survivable. Now what? Will you be fired? Is your career over? Interestingly, that all depends on the culture of your organization and the temperament of those above you on the organizational chart. Those factors will determine what happens to you more than the mistake itself. But, there are some things you can do to give yourself the best chance possible: Own it. Tell your boss what has happened before he/she finds out some other way, and as soon as you discover it. Your honesty will be viewed positively, and you will be viewed as more trustworthy. As we all know, covering up is just as much a problem as the mistake itself.


Thrive Magazine for Better Living • August 2022

Make amends. The words, “I’m sorry,” are going to need to come out of your mouth a lot, so get ready. You need to apologize to all those impacted, and do so as personally as possible. This means in person is your first choice, then by phone if in person is not an option, or lastly via written word (email, text, etc). Those affected need to feel your genuine remorse. For many people, this is the most difficult step. A lot of people choke on the words “I’m sorry.” Not you, though. You understand that an apology will increase the likelihood of getting things moving in the right direction. When you apologize, keep it direct and short. No casual chatting, and absolutely no excuses. “I am here to apologize to you for something that has happened . . .” is a good starting point. Learn from it. When you tell your boss about the mistake, have the situation figured out. Know how it happened and what you will do to make sure it doesn’t happen again. If you don’t put a plan or system in place to prevent it in the future, you are going to find yourself in the same exact situation down the road. And others will lose patience with you if you keep repeating the same mistakes. Take a look at yourself. What was going on that you made the mistake? Were you distracted for some reason? Were you trying to cut corners because you were behind? Were you attempting to do something beyond your skill set? As you do the analysis, think about what you can do about it. Do you need more training? Do you need to research

how to manage time better? Do you need to go to counseling to deal with the distracting things? Many times, mistakes at work are a wakeup call that your life needs to be restructured in some way. Accept the consequences. If you plan to keep working for the organization, you need to deal with the consequences given to you. Maybe you won’t get that bonus or promotion, but the way you handle the meeting where you are informed of what is going to happen will tell your boss a lot about you. No whining. Not too much groveling either. “I’m not happy about this, but I understand. I will do whatever is necessary to earn back your confidence in me” is the kind of tone you need to take. After that meeting, get busy getting things on track. Put your new systems in place. Get a mentor if that would be helpful. Seek feedback from others. Be sure to document your improvements so you can prove you are the person for the job! Of course, there is no guarantee the items listed above will work. Hopefully the “Powers That Be” will view your mistake as a learning opportunity and have mercy on you. They are more likely to do so if you have been a good employee who generally does a good job. If, no matter what you do, you cannot seem to please those in power, it really may be time to move on to a new organization where mistakes are not viewed as the end of the world.








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Thrive Magazine for Better Living • August 2022