SEMIEN RECEIVES SCHOLARSHIP: In recognition of outstanding leadership, Dillard University’s Joy Semien, of Baton Rouge, is one of 30 students from six historically black colleges and universities who has received a $2,500 Anheuser-Busch scholarship through the United Negro College Fund.

Semien was announced a scholarship recipient at the leadership symposium hosted by Anheuser-Busch and UNCF at Morehouse College in Atlanta on Oct. 30.


RICE NAMED MISS BLACK LOUISIANA: Franklinton native and Baker High School teacher Chanté Rice was crowned Miss Black Louisiana USA 2013 on Nov. 10 at the Louisiana State Police Auditorium during its annual pageant. Rice also won the People’s Choice and Director’s Community Service awards.

Rice graduated from Franklinton High School with honors in 2005 and received a bachelor of science degree from LSU with a concentration in human resources education in 2009, later earning an alternative teacher certification in business education. Rice currently attends Saint Leo University pursing a master of business administration degree.

As Miss Black Louisiana, Rice will travel the state promoting PUMPS (Promoting Uplifting Morals and Professional Skills). PUMPS helps girls transition to professional women by providing workshops, mentoring and volunteer opportunities.

HERMAN NAMED PEOPLES HEALTH CHAMPION: The Peoples Health Champions program honored Russ Herman, its seventh champion of the 2012-13 NFL football season on Nov. 11 during the New Orleans Saints game against the Atlanta Falcons. A Peoples Health Champion is someone who has done something extraordinary after age 65 and who proves that excellence is achieved through experience.

On Dec. 15, 2011, at age 69, Herman, a co-lead attorney for victims of defective Chinese drywall, successfully negotiated the largest settlement of its kind in U.S. history. The settlement, estimated at close to $1 billion, should assist thousands of Gulf South residents whose homes were severely damaged by the defective drywall’s corrosive effects.

Herman is senior partner in the firm Herman Herman & Katz LLC of New Orleans.


SCOTT NAMED TOP RECRUITER: Navy career counselor Chief Petty Officer Dewayne C. Scott, aBaton Rouge native and Capitol High School graduate, is one of the top Navy recruiters for 2012.

Scott won Divisional Leading Chief Petty Officer/Leading Petty Officer Recruiter of the Nation. Scott is stationed at Navy Recruiting District, Atlanta in Smyrna, Ga., and served as Division 1 LCPO. He was recently promoted to officer programs assistant chief recruiter.

Scott enlisted in the Navy in November 1999 after attending Southern University. From 2006-10, Scott served as a recruiter-in-charge at NRS North Baton Rouge and Zone 3 supervisor, where he earned the Zone Supervisor of the Year Award in 2010.

BONIN PROMOTED TO MAJOR: Brett Bonin, a St. Amant native, was promoted to major in the Air Force Reserves on Oct. 1. Bonin has 18 years of service and is assigned to the 33rd Network Warfare Squadron, an element of the U.S. Air Force Space Command, as a cyberspace crew commander in Lackland, Texas. His civilian occupation is information systems security officer for Dell Services in Dallas.

EASLEY COMPLETES BASIC: Navy Seaman Kaitlin R. Easley, daughter of Lori T. and Richard V. Easley, of Holden, recently completed U.S. Navy basic training at Recruit Training Command, Great Lakes, Ill. Easley is a 2012 graduate of Holden High School.

“Neighbors Notes” is published every Tuesday in the People section. Send items to “Neighbors Notes,” The Advocate, P.O. Box 588, Baton Rouge, LA 70821, or fax information to (225) 388-0351 or email to Deadline is Tuesday at noon of each week for the following Tuesday.