The Louisiana Center for Women in Government and Business inducted 10 women and two men known for their outstanding support of leadership among women into its Hall of Fame on Nov. 21 at Nicholls State University in Thibodaux.
The Center for Women was established in 1990 as a statewide, nonpartisan resource to help elect more women to public office. In 2013, its mission expanded to include women in business.
The 2015 Hall of Fame inductees are Stephanie Burks, co-founder and vice president of RYCARS Construction, which operates in 10 states; Leah Chase, owner of Dooky Chase’s restaurant in New Orleans; New Orleans City Council member Jacquelyn B. Clarkson; Felicia Frederick, manager of governmental affairs at Chevron; Russ Herman, senior partner, Herman, Herman & Katz Law Firm; Christian LeBlanc, actor; Leslie Marsh, donor relations officer, Tulane University; Nell Nolan, journalist; Karen Puckett, former president of global markets, CenturyLink; Brandie Toups, chairwoman, Louisiana Girls Leadership Academy; Chief Judge Vanessa Whipple, Louisiana First Circuit Court of Appeal; and Donnell Zeringue, Lafourche Parish Commission for Women.
Co-chairwomen of the 25th anniversary events were Cherry Fisher May, publisher of IND Media in Lafayette, and Maj. Renee Brinkley, of the Lafourche Parish Sheriff’s Office.
The Center’s Hall of Fame was begun in 1994 and includes former Congresswoman Lindy Boggs, former Louisiana Treasurer Mary Evelyn Parker, former newspaper writer Iris Kelso, Louisiana Public Broadcasting’s Beth Courtney, former Gov. Kathleen Babineaux Blanco, former state official Sandra Thompson Herman, Levees.org founder Sandy Rosenthal and former Lt. Gov. Melinda Schwegmann.