BATON ROUGE AREA
Kendall Booth has joined health and life insurance brokerage firm Group Insurance Inc. as director of media marketing.
Booth returns to Baton Rouge from Dallas where she worked as a public relations and social media strategist with Champion Management, a marketing, branding and public relations agency. She studied business administration at St. John’s University in Rome before transferring to LSU where she earned her bachelor's degree in marketing in 2016.
Group Insurance, founded in 1971, operates subsidiaries Seniors Advisory Services Inc. and Insurance Services of America Inc. serving niche markets in the industry.
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana has appointed Prashanth Cannanbilla as vice president of strategic program management, and David Yoo as vice president of digital and enterprise services, both on its collaborative information technology leadership team.
Cannanbilla was senior vice president and head of data governance and management at F.N.B. Corp. and previously senior director of IT at Highmark Inc. He earned his master’s degree in computer science at the University of Pittsburgh and Master of Business Administration at the Katz School of Business at the University of Pittsburgh.
Yoo has more than 25 years of senior-level IT and digital leadership experience, including at Carlson Cos. and Best Buy in Minnesota; Kaiser Permanente, NantHealth and Encore Capital Group in California; and Bank of America in North Carolina. Yoo studied biology at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities and completed the executive leadership program at the University of Minnesota's Graduate School of Management.
Investar Bank promoted senior vice president commercial relationship managers Michael Matthis and Melissa Pace to commercial market managers, each responsible for hiring, managing and growing a team of commercial portfolio managers and lenders.
Matthis has more than 25 years’ banking experience and Pace has more than 30 years’ experience in banking, both specializing in commercial lending. His focus is in commercial construction and her focus is in commercial real estate. Matthis has been with Investar for three years and Pace five years. Matthis graduated with a bachelor’s degree in business management from the University of New Orleans. Pace studied accounting at LSU.
Landon Jordan has joined the LSU Alumni Association as chief financial officer.
Jordan was director of accounting at the Baton Rouge Orthopedic Clinic. A graduate of Southeastern Louisiana University, he earned his certified public accountant license in 2010.
Preston L. Kennedy, president and chief executive officer of Zachary Bancshares Inc. in Zachary, was elected chairman of the Independent Community Bankers of America.
He serves as chairman of the group's executive committee and board of directors.
Elaina LeBlanc has been appointed by JD Bank as assistant vice president and branch manager of its Opelousas branch.
The appointment gives Tina Vidrine, previously branch manager, time to focus on commercial lending through her network of customers in the Opelousas area.
LeBlanc was with Hancock-Whitney Bank and has more than 30 years in banking in the state, including batch clerk, teller, loan review, credit analysis, commercial lending and consumer lending.
Gifford Saravia has been named as paramedic program manager for South Louisiana Community College's paramedic program in partnership with the National EMS Academy.
His appointment follows the retirement of Gregory Mullen.
Saravia was serving as the education manager for the National EMS Academy. The New Iberia native has been with Acadian Cos. for more than 27 years, including serving as a driver, emergency medical technician basic, paramedic, education coordinator, National EMS Academy director, education manager and paramedic program manager. Saravia holds a master's degree in adult education with a minor in homeland security and a bachelor's degree in unified public safety administration, both from Northwestern State University; an associate of applied science paramedic from SLCC; and an associate of occupational studies electronics technology from Southern Technical College.
FM Bank has named Scott Myers as Treasury management officer; Ashley Hebert as lead agriculture lender and consumer lender in Breaux Bridge; and Brooke Degeyter Angelle as its Walmart branch manager.
Myers will work with commercial lenders to grow FM Bank’s Treasury management services and low-cost deposits. He’s been in banking since 2003 and worked at Whitney National Bank, IberiaBank and Investar Bank. He holds a bachelor’s in finance from McNeese State University. Hebert worked at St. Martin Bank as a branch manager in Scott. She’s a graduate of Breaux Bridge Senior High School. Angelle has been with FM Bank since 2014 as a customer service representative. She attended Breaux Bridge Senior High School.
NEW ORLEANS AREA
City Park has name Meg Adams as director of environmental stewardship, Amanda Frentz as director of public relations, Sarah Olivier as its first planning director and Casie Duplechain as chief development officer.
Adams, who joined City Park in 2007, was director of construction and managed the design and construction of more than $200 million in building projects in the park, including the administration building, Pepsi Tennis Complex, the Festival Grounds and Big Lake. Adams is a civil engineer and a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design-accredited professional. Frentz was assistant director of public relations and started with City Park in the development department in 2010. Since then, she’s created the public relations department. Olivier was the New Orleans program director for The Trust for Public Land, a national park and conservation nonprofit, and had worked with City Park on the installation of the Fitness Zone in the Festival Grounds. Duplechain was executive director of Friends of City Park, where she oversaw fundraising for capital improvement projects.
Lake Lawn Metairie Funeral Home and Cemeteries, a Dignity Memorial provider, has named Stephen Sontheimer as senior consultant of funeral services and Billy Henry as executive funeral director.
Sontheimer is a fourth-generation funeral director whose family has been involved in funeral service in New Orleans continuously since 1916. He was the former chairman and chief executive officer of Security Industrial Funeral Home Corp. and for the past 22 years has been a funeral director-consultant associated with Bultman and Tharp-Sontheimer Funeral Homes. The New Orleans native attended Isidore Newman School, graduated from Culver Military Academy and the Tulane University School of Business.
Henry, the former general manager of Tharp-Sontheimer Funeral Home, has more than 38 years of local experience and been a national board-licensed funeral director and embalmer since 1973.
Lois Harris Sutton, publisher of Where Traveler Magazine, has been elected president the New Orleans Chapter of Skål International, a travel and tourism Industry organization.
Other officers are Shelley Pigeon, managing partner of Access DMC, vice president, and Jim Szeszycki, president of Concord Transportation Services, secretary-treasurer.