Ochsner Accolades

The Department of Philanthropy at Ochsner Health System requested the pleasure of one’s company at the Benefactor Dinner to celebrate the generous philanthropists of Ochsner. The Audubon Tea Room was the site for the salutes. During the course of the event, which started with a cocktail hour and then segued into dinner and a presentation, there was the formal recognition and presentation of new members of the Benefactor and Heritage Societies.

Bobby Moulton, CEO of Seven10 Storage Software, gave both the welcome and his perspective as a new donor to Ochsner. Additional program features were the talk by Ochsner Health System CEO Warner Thomas on the state of the Health System, as well as the Ochsner trivia game and thank-you video hosted by chief development officer of OHS Michelle Dodenhoff.

At the end of the formalities, new Benefactors and Society members were recognized at various levels, upwards of $1 million in contributions.

Notables within a group of 250 included Ochsner Foundation board member and Recognized Donor Paul Flower; Health System board members and Recognized Benefactors Jose and Ileana Suquet, Suzanne Mestayer, and Bill and Mary Hines; and additional Special Benefactors Ginger Moskau and Bonnie Rault.

Mingling, too, were foundation board members Robert Boh, Bill Freiberg, Marcel Garsaud, Lee Giorgio, Cliffe Laborde, Dr. John Ochsner, and Catherine Burns Tremaine. The latter two had fathers, Dr. Alton Ochsner and Dr. Edgar Burns, who were among the five founders of Ochsner. From the OHS board came members, all doctors, Richard Deichmann, Dennis Kay, and Dana Smetherman.

To reflect the Ochsner colors, the centerpieces were composed of yellow roses and blue hydrangeas. They were admired as guests broke bread, enjoying a dinner of cucumber roll spring salad accented with an edible orchid, filet mignon and crème caramel topped with fresh berries for dessert. Adding the various “courses” of the musical menu was the Joe Simon Trio.

Regents Rally

“Celebrating 65 Years of Lasallian Education on the Avenue — A Legacy of Leadership” titled the feature presentation at the De La Salle High School Board of Regents Dinner in the Lafayette Ballroom of the Ritz-Carlton Hotel. Jimmy Baldwin Jr., who was not able to be present because of his son’s upcoming nuptials, and George Young, respective graduates of the classes of 1970 and 1976, chair the Regents Board.

Approximately 220 alumni, parents and special guests gathered to hear about De La Salle’s winning achievements in academics and athletics, along with future plans for the St. Charles Avenue-located school. But before that, there was the cocktail-hour hobnobbing with music by the De La Salle String Orchestra, directed by Christina Towell.

Dinner followed with the gustatory pleasures of three courses.

John Fox, chairman of the corporate board (the board of trustees), launched the formalities with welcoming remarks. Then came the invocation by Warren Caire, Ph.D., AFSC; president’s remarks by interim President/alumnus Myles Seghers, Ph.D.; and, as a highlight, the above “Celebrating 65 Years” video presentation courtesy of BrownRice Marketing. Fletcher and Travers Mackel, telebrity twins who graduated in 1992, were the narrators.

On a somber note, a beautiful tribute was made to honor the late Michael Guillot, Ph.D., who served as De La Salle’s president from 2012-15.

George Young gave remarks under the heading “Investing in De La Salle’s Future,” followed by Myles Seghers’ closing comments. Further notables, and there were quite a few, included DLS board Vice President Herb Anderson, school Principal Paul Kelly with spouse Jill, Linda (Mrs. Myles) Seghers, former Tulane University President Eamon Kelly and Margaret, Tony and Michelle Bonura, Peter and Renee Laborde, Bob and Laure Mineo, and Archbishop Rummel High School President Brother Gale Condit, FSC. Also, Mike and Lindsay Lanaux, Joe and Patricia Paternostro, Tim and Norlisha Burke, Mike and Betty Hoss, and Dan Shea and Stephanie Stokes.

Those supporters and about 200 others will have lasting remembrances of the evening. Not only did they appreciate the fellowship and the spirit of “Building a Path to Greatness for De La Salle High School,” but they took home custom neckties and pashminas provided by Cecile Hardy, of NOLA Couture.

Walk on By

Prior to the annual excitement of the New Orleans Wine and Food Experience’s Royal Street Stroll, a party occurred for the media and other top names. Brennan’s restaurant housed the most recent hobnobbing, which was part of the 23rd annual culinary celebration.

Then folks hit the street, Royal that is, for a stroll fit for foodie and oenophile kings and queens. For eight blocks, the earlier Brennan’s guests and ticketed individuals ambled along, enjoying wine, nibbles, music, and shopping. Slews of stores and galleries were open to invite them in.

Along the way, the Krewe of Cork made a fine and lively presence. More than 100 Corkians cavorted (albeit with a distinct pluvial distraction) to promote its mantra of “Wine! Food! And Fun!” Their pedestrian parade ended with a gathering at Hotel Mazarin, where everyone had the chance to enjoy chef Agnes Bellet’s buffet fare along with featured Save/Estancia wines.

The presentation ceremony of the Grand Marshal’s cape to Clay Brock, wine maker of Save/Estancia Wines, was made all the more special by the presence of a brace of predecessors: Susan Selby and Bryan Del Bondio, the RSS grand marshals of 2011 and ’12. In addition to 2015 Grand Marshal Brock, the stroll proceeded with a host of headliners led by the “permanent” king, Patrick van Hoorebeek and Cork captain Bill Trufant.

More names are those of the NOWFE 2015 executive committee. Susan Hislop (Home Team Productions) answers to president while Ted Selogie (general manager, JW Marriott), Traci Beninate (Glazer’s Companies of Louisiana), Chris Brancato (co-owner, Merchant & Beta), and Chris Ycaza (general manager, Broussard’s Restaurant) are, in turn, vice president, treasurer, secretary and 2014 president. Furthermore, Lauren Brennan Brower (Dickie Brennan & Co.) is now a member of the board.

Around and About

The sororal call was for luncheon when the New Orleans Alumnae Club of Pi Beta Phi met at the Southern Yacht Club to celebrate Pi Phi’s Founders’ Day. Menu options were grilled chicken or catfish amandine and the tables were set with centerpieces of wine and silver blue flowers, the sorority’s colors. Arrow-decorated stemless wine glasses were given as gifts, incorporating the signature motif.

Among the attendees were alumnae club President Kady Collier, Alison Heuser, Ashley Nelson, Ashton Turberville, Celeste McDonald, Shannon Stucke, Jennifer Beaver, Natalie Hickman, Elizabeth Airey, Sherry Langston, Gretchen Lozes Fischer, Lindsey Lozes, Lindsey Wands, Heather Rankin, Carol Becker, Michelle Stanard Duhon and Patsy Green.

A highlight occurred during a special presentation when a 50 Year Pin Award was given to Linda Lawrence Perschall. Congratulations abounded.