The Associated Builders and Contractors Pelican Chapter honored 24 projects in 10 categories ranging from commercial buildings to industrial mega projects in its Excellence in Construction Awards Program. Projects are judged on complexity, attractiveness, unique challenges overcome, completion time, workmanship, innovation, safety and cost.

Awards by category are commercial less than $5 million excellence to Cajun Industries for Stab’s Steak and Seafood and merit to The Lemoine Co. for Partner’s Property Office Building; electrical industrial less than $10 million excellence to MMR Constructors for Bunge Dock Expansion and merit to Triad Electric & Controls for Valero FCC Desalter Project; other construction $2 million to $100 million excellence to The Lemoine Co. for M.L. Tigue Moore Baseball Field Renovations and merit to Arkel Constructors for Woman’s Hospital NICU; industrial less than $5 million excellence to Kostmayer Construction for Dow Chemical Outfall Flume and merit to Repcon for Pipe Rack Modification Project; industrial $5 million to $15 million excellence to Cajun Industries for Rubicon Variants Capacity Expansion, merit to Cajun Industries for Dow Gulfstream Building Program, merit to Excel Contractors for Limetree Bay Restoration and Restart and merit to Trade Construction for Ascension Parish Pipeline Project; industrial $15 million to $25 million excellence to Arkel Constructors for Exxon NAG and merit to Arkel Constructors for Marathon Control Building; mega-projects excellence to ISC Constructors for North American Growth Polyethylene Project and merit to Primoris Services Corp. for Sasol Lake Charles Chemicals Project; other specialty industrial construction more than $10 million excellence to Barriere Construction for Sasol Heavy Haul Road and to MMR Constructors for Nitrogen Fertilizer Project; other specialty construction less than $10 million excellence to Barriere Construction for La. 417, merit to Excel Contractors for Westlake Polymers – Poly 1 Control Room Upgrade and merit to Cajun Industries for Praxair Cold Box No. 6; and other specialty construction more than $10 million excellence to Triad Electric & Controls for Marathon Turnaround, merit to Barriere Construction for La. 20 and merit to ISC Constructors for LHC3 Control Room Upgrade.


Christian Richard, a sixth-generation farmer from Vermilion Parish, was named the 2017 Rice Farmer of the Year at the USA Rice Outlook Conference.

In addition, former LSU AgCenter rice breeder Xueyan Sha was honored with the Rice Industry Award, and LSU AgCenter rice breeder Adam Famoso was one of seven individuals selected for the 2018 Rice Leadership Development Class.

Richard farms rice, crawfish and soybeans in Vermilion Parish.

Sha worked at the LSU AgCenter from 2000 to 2012, where he developed 20 long-grain, medium-grain and aromatic rice varieties, including the aromatic Jazzman and medium-grain Jupiter.


Louisiana Appleseed, a nonprofit that recruits professionals to donate pro bono time to solve problems and advance social justice, announced winners of its 2018 Good Apple Gala.

Community honorees are Chief Justice Bernette Johnson, of the Louisiana Supreme Court, for increasing access to justice throughout her career; Alan Philipson for his work increasing access to education, including achievements on behalf of Bricolage Academy and his membership on the boards of numerous other community-benefiting schools and nonprofits; and Ken Polite, of Entergy Corp. and former U.S. Attorney, for his work with many initiatives, including a workforce program for ex-offenders returning from incarceration.

Pro bono honorees are Caroline Crosby and Lillian Grappe, of Phelps Dunbar, for suggesting best practices to the Access to Justice Commission related to providing quality interpreters for litigants and victims in the civil and criminal justice systems; Sam Ford, of Scott, Vicknair, Hair and Checki LLC, for working with the Louisiana State Bar Association's Debt Buyer Task Force on reforms to protect consumers from debt buyers' unfair and illegal collection practices; Patty McMurray, of Baker Donelson, and daughter Madison McMurray, of UVA Law School, for advocacy efforts to change the law on small successions to make it easier and less expensive for people to have clear title to their property to preserve home ownership and promote economic development.

Awards will be presented 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Jan. 18 at the NOPSI Hotel, 317 Baronne St., New Orleans.