It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year to Shop Locally!
There has never been a more important and convenient time to shop locally and support small businesses right in your own community. To survive the pandemic, our small businesses have triumphantly evolved and adapted to the changing retail environment. Thankfully for consumers, this means that you have even more ways to shop with many of your favorite local retailers. Instead of saving a few quick bucks with online megastores, look to your local retailers for new and convenient shopping opportunities that can save a business and build a better community.
Personalized Convenience for You
For years, online mega-retailers have had the competitive edge due to convenience and accessibility, but our local and small businesses have taken a giant leap ahead of those mega-retailers by now offering that online presence with a much more personal feel and level of service. Reserve ahead, curbside and in-store pickup allow you to pick up purchases at your convenience. Don’t want to wait a week or even two days for your purchase to arrive, visit one of your local retailers. Prefer to have it shipped to your home? Many local retailers offer that too! While local businesses may never beat online mega-retailers on price, they typically surpass the big competitors in customer satisfaction.
During a time when our activity has been limited, a simple trip to the store now serves as a seemingly new adventure. Nothing can replace stepping foot into a store full of specially curated and organized merchandise. Thankfully, our retailers have stepped up their policies to match CDC and other governing guidelines regarding public health and your safety. Whether it’s a hardware store or clothing boutique, these retailers know their shoppers and want to showcase all of their products to meet each customer’s need.
Save a Business
Business owners have been put through the ringer this year, and this is a great time to give them a boost of confidence to close out this unimaginable year. For those businesses that have been staples in the community, it is now our time to give back to them!
Build Your Community
There’s no question that shopping locally positively benefits the community, but what are all of the benefits that you may not be thinking about? First and foremost, our local businesses build a stronger economy. These local businesses generate sales tax revenue as well as jobs and opportunities for other local residents and businesses. Local businesses are more likely to use local vendors, suppliers, contractors, print shops, and more to continue the cycle of business health within the community. It’s the multiplier effect! Local businesses are also more likely to give back and support their community through local non-profits, events, teams, and more which creates a connected and invested community.
The bottom line is…thriving and unique area businesses make your community a vibrant place to live and positively impacts home values, school ratings and so much more.
ASCENSION CHAMBER GRADUATES 25TH LEADERSHIP CLASS
The Leadership Ascension Program Graduates Its 25th Class
Gonzales, LA—October 6, 2020—Leadership Ascension, a program of the Ascension Chamber of Commerce, was proud to recently graduate its 25th Leadership Class at Clarion Inn & Conference Center.
There were 31 participants in this year’s Leadership Class. As in past years, each member was put on a team with the task of researching and implementing a project that would positively affect the Ascension Community. Despite the challenges of 2020 and numerous class members serving on the front lines, each project team managed to complete an amazing project that will benefit Ascension Parish for years to come. This year’s projects were Team H.O.P.E (Helping Other People Succeed), a project that raised funds for renovations and the installation of an ADA compliant bathroom at the ARC of Donaldsonville; Ripple Effect, who partnered with Child Advocacy Services and local schools to raise funds to train community members, who work with children, to recognize the signs of sexual abuse and trauma in children; Team Third Row, who resurfaced Kidz Kove Discovery Park and revitalized the park with new equipment; and The Village People built a warm and inviting space filled with children’s necessities and comfort items to support foster families in Ascension Parish.
All projects will undoubtedly benefit the Parish for years to come, but The Village People was chosen as this year’s winner. Winning team members included: Sinead Holleran, Julie Knight, Kent Landacre, Candace Melancon, Michelle Robicheaux, Stacey Stephens, and Kerr Wall.
In addition to benefitting the community, the Leadership Ascension Program has a positive impact on those who participate. This year’s participants included: Graduates Pictured L to R: Melissa Bourgeois, Bourgeois PT and Sport Rehab; Sarah Brown, Ascension Credit Union; Craig Carroll, Garcia Roofing; Toni Dantonio, OLOL Ascension; Matt Faubion, Shell Chemical LP; LeJaune George, Sr., BASF; Lynn Hathaway, Ascension Public Schools; Sinead Holleran, Chemical Engineer; Ryan Houston, Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center; Julie Knight, Alzheimer’s Services if the Capital Area; Kimberly Koehl, GSA Consulting Engineers; Kent Landacre, Jr., Neighbors Federal Credit Union; Cassidy McFarland, Neighbors Federal Credit Union; Janet McCrory, City of Gonzales; Candace Melancon, Ochsner; Rebecca Mouk, Ascension Roofing & Fabrication; Morgan Nicolich, Shell; Vere O’Kelley, EATEL; Kayla Oubre, R.J. Daigle & Sons Contractors, Inc.; LaTonya Prejean, Ascension Parish Sheriff’s Office; Josh Rhodes, BASF; Michelle Robicheaux, Ascension Parish Clerk of Court; Tiffany Robinson, BASF; Kish Shah, Bourgeois PT and Sport Rehab; Stacey Stephens, Attorney at Law; Payne Trichell, Pelican State Credit Union; Tony Tureau, Ascension Parish Sheriff’s Office; Mark Vincent, Rebel Graphix; Kerr Wall, BASF, Ingrid Williams, Doman Architecture; Renee Zimmerman, Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady Health System; Liz Laurent, Class of 2020 Facilitator.
The 2020 Leadership Class, facilitated by Chamber VP of Operations, Liz Laurent, contributes the program’s success to the many sponsors and support committees who volunteer their time and resources. The chamber would like to recognize Ascension Economic Development Corp, Ascension Parish Government, Ascension Parish School Board, Ascension Parish Sheriff’s Office, BASF, City of Gonzales, Covalent Logic, Domain Architecture, Lofton Staffing & Security Services, Percy & Mumphrey, Port of Greater Baton Rouge, OLOL Ascension, The Leadership Ascension Committee, The Leadership Ascension Foundation Committee for their support of the Class of 2020.
Leadership Ascension started in 1996 with the mission of preparing emerging community leaders for leadership positions in local government and business. The 10-month program accepts students by application only and offers educational sessions and training covering topics such as Economic Development, Healthcare, Project Management Training, Conflict Resolution, and Cultural Diversity. To apply for the upcoming class or learn more about Leadership Ascension, visit www.ascensionchamber.com or call 225.647.7487.
Chamber Honors 2019 Success at Annual Awards Banquet
The Ascension Chamber of Commerce honored their 2019 Ambassador, Individual, New Business, Small Business and Medium/Large Business of the Year nominees at its Annual Awards Banquet held Tuesday, January 28th at the exquisite Houmas House Plantation. More than 300 guests began their evening with a wine social complete with live music, followed by an elegant dinner and awards program.
During the program, the Chamber celebrated the dedication and commitment of their Award Nominees along with the numerous successes of the Ascension Chamber in 2019 including reaching 568 in member businesses. The program was led by Chamber President/CEO Barker Dirmann and Chamber Board Chair Yvonne Pellerin of Our Lady of the Lake Ascension.
Individual of the Year nominees were James Falgout of Earles & Assoicates, Shawn Nolan of Capital City Payroll, and Erica Page of Pelican State Credit Union. 2019 New Business of the Year Nominees were Expert Maintenance and Construction Services, Gulf South Engineering & Testing, and Rebel Graphix. 2019 Small Business of the Year nominees were AthruZ Janitorial, Torapath Technologies, and TruBlue Water. 2019 Medium/Large Business of the Year nominees were Advantous Consulting, Garcia Roofing & Sheetmetal, and Neighbors Federal Credit Union.
The Chamber is proud to announce Monty Buckles with La. Federal Credit Union as the 2019 Ambassador of the Year, James Falgout as the 2019 Individual of the Year, Rebel Graphix as the 2019 New Business of the Year, TruBlue Water as the 2019 Small Business of the Year and Neighbors Federal Credit Union as the 2019 Large Business of the Year.
The evening also included the announcement of the 2019 Chamber Cup winner. Domain Architecture went home with the 2019 Chamber Cup, an award given to the chamber member with the overall highest score on chamber sporting events. The 2019 Chamber Cup was based on the Spring Sprint 5K, the Business Booster Bowling Tournament, and the Golf Ascension Tournament.
The Ascension Chamber would like to thank event sponsors: Our Lady of the Lake Ascension, Presenting Sponsor; Express Employment Professionals, Social Sponsor and Silver Sponsors: BASF; Coldwell Banker One -Bronier Boyce; Dwight D. Poirrier, APLC; EATEL; Regions Bank; Rubicon; and Shell Chemical.
If you would like information on how to get your business involved with the Ascension Chamber of Commerce in 2020, please visit www.ascensionchamber.com.
Ascension Chamber Welcomes 2020 Chairman of the Board and 4 New Board Members
The Ascension Chamber Welcomes New 2020 Chairman and 4 New Board Members
Gonzales, LA—January 29, 2020, —The Ascension Chamber credits its success to an active membership of more than 550 businesses, its dedicated staff and a diverse, innovative Board of Directors. Barbara Irwin, of Pujol, Pryor & Irwin, The Litigation Firm, recently handed over the reins as 2019 Chairman of the Board to the new 2020 Chairman, Yvonne Pellerin, Nurse Executive at Our Lady of the Lake Ascension.
The Chamber would like to thank Barbara Irwin for her dedication to the Chamber throughout 2019.
We are pleased to announce the new additions to the 2020 Board of Directors: Josh Descant, EATEL; Kevin McCarroll, BASF; Erica Page, Pelican State Credit Union; and Craig Stevens, Genesis 360, LLC.
The mission of the Ascension Chamber of Commerce is to facilitate and foster economic growth for its members. The Ascension Chamber works to encourage a healthy and growing economic environment in the parish by offering its membership countless opportunities for business and professional growth. For more information on how you can become a member or get involved, contact the Chamber office at 225.647.7487 or visit our website at www.ascensionchamber.com.
Standing L to R: Kevin McCarroll, BASF; Mark Dearman, Rubicon; Brandon Davis, Cox Media; Amy Velez, Express Employment Professionals; Yvonne Pellerin, Our Lady of the Lake Ascension; Ronnie Daigle, R.J. Daigle & Sons; Garrett Ganucheau, EFCU Financial; Paul Salvant, The Bug Man; and Barker Dirmann, Ascension Chamber President/CEO.
Seated L to R: Josh Descant, EATEL; Erica Page, Pelican State Credit Union; Lori Lowery, Shell Chemical Geismar; Barbara Irwin, Pujol, Pryor & Irwin, The Litigation Firm; Jacob Waguespack, Faulk & Winkler, LLC; Glynn Fontenot, Methanex; Craig Stevens, Genesis 360, LLC; and Marie Broussard, Coldwell Banker One.
Not Pictured: David Alexander, Ascension Parish Schools; Gus Gutierrez, BRPT-Lake; and Bobby Webre, Ascension Parish Sheriff.
2020 Opportunity Ascension Campaign Wraps Up
The Ascension Chamber of Commerce is proud to announce another successful Opportunity Ascension Campaign with more than $155,000 raised as of November 14, 2019, nearly reaching their goal of $160,000. Started in 2015, this annual fundraising and membership campaign was established to support future Chamber operations, events, programs and initiatives for the business community.
For 6 weeks volunteers were given a 2019 goal of raising $160,000 for the Chamber. To reach this goal, volunteers and Chamber staff sold memberships, event sponsorships, advertising, initiatives, and budget reduction trades.
Business can still get involved with the Chamber by becoming a member, sponsoring a 2020 event, or getting involved with business initiatives. Please call the Ascension Chamber at (225) 802-9796 if you would like to participate.
A big thanks to our Volunteers:
Mayor Barney Arceneaux, Chair
Lyman Abadie, Team Captain
James Falgout, Team Captain
Meg Mahoney, Team Captain
Aleaha Morgan, Team Captain
Tammy Williams, Team Captain
Monika Arnold, Volunteer
Scott Banker, Volunteer
Monty Buckles, Volunteer
Jason Cheeks, Volunteer
Dustin Clouatre, Volunteer
Sheena Falgoust, Volunteer
Pam Hughes, Volunteer
Rachael Lambert, Volunteer
Sharon Morris, Volunteer
Erica Page, Volunteer
Chamber announces 2020 Opportunity Ascension Campaign
CHAMBER ANNOUNCES 2020 TOTAL RESOURCE CAMPAIGN
Renewals for the Ascension Chamber’s Fifth Annual Total Resource Campaign, Opportunity Ascension, are currently underway. We are excited to have Mayor Barney Arceneaux as our 2020 Campaign Chair.
If you sponsored a chamber event in 2019 and have not received your renewals, please contact the Chamber Office right away and we will have one of our volunteers contact you.
Opportunity Ascension is powered by volunteers under the leadership of the Campaign Chair and Chamber Staff. These volunteers market sponsorships to Chamber events and publications, while also seeking new members for the Chamber. The all-volunteer Campaign consists of more than 150 sponsorships available only during the campaign. Volunteers assist companies with choosing options best suited to meet the organization’s marketing needs.
Someone will be contacting you soon to review 2020 chamber marketing opportunities. For more information, contact Liz Laurent at 225.647.7487.
Leadership Ascension Introduces Class of 2020
The Ascension Chamber of Commerce Announces Its 25th Leadership Ascension Class
Gonzales, LA—August 29, 2019—The Ascension Chamber of Commerce recently announced its 25th Leadership Ascension Class at Parc 73 in Prairieville. This year’s class consists of 32 outstanding individuals.
Leadership Ascension, like similar programs nationwide, is designed to develop responsible and informed community leaders. Recognized and emerging leaders in the community are selected to represent the diverse demographic of the Ascension Parish Community based on an application outlining each candidate’s work experience, education and community involvement.
The 10-month Leadership Program, facilitated by Chamber VP of Operations Liz Laurent, strives to develop practical leadership skills while promoting personal growth. Sessions are held each month and cover topics including diversity, conflict resolution, project management, social concerns, health care, law enforcement, and government. The program begins with a teambuilding opening retreat and ends with a two-day closing retreat where the students review the sessions and present class projects that are developed throughout the year.
Nearly 800 individuals ranging from business owners to government officials have completed Leadership since its inception. Many of these leaders participate on the Chamber’s Leadership Committee, Leadership Alumni Committee and Leadership Ascension Foundation that assist in planning, recruiting and steering this renowned program.
To learn more about Leadership Ascension, visit www.ascensionchamber.com or call 225.647.7487.
The Ascension Chamber Welcomes New 2019 Chairman and Four New Board Members
The Ascension Chamber Welcomes New 2019 Chairman and 4 New Board Members
The Ascension Chamber credits its success to an active membership of more than 550 businesses, its dedicated staff and a diverse, innovative Board of Directors. Michael Buturla, of Domain Architecture, recently handed over the reins as 2018 Chairman of the Board to the new 2019 Chairman, Barbara Irwin of Pujol, Pryor & Irwin, Attorneys at Law.
The Chamber would like to thank Michael Buturla for his dedication to the Chamber throughout 2018.
We are pleased to announce the new additions to the 2019 Board of Directors: Garret Ganucheau, EFCU Financial; Chris Irvine, BASF; Lori Lowery, Shell Chemical-Geismar and Amy Velez, Express Employment Professionals.
The mission of the Ascension Chamber of Commerce is to facilitate and foster economic growth for its members. The Ascension Chamber works to encourage a healthy and growing economic environment in the parish by offering its membership numerous educational and networking opportunities. For more information on how you can become a member or get involved, contact the Chamber office at 225.647.7487 or visit our website at www.ascensionchamber.com.
Standing L to R: Paul Salvant, The Bug Man; Bobby Webre, Ascension Parish Sheriff; Chris Irvine, BASF; Barbara Irwin, Pujol, Pryor & Irwin, Attorneys at Law; Michael Buturla, Domain Architecture; Mark Dearman, Rubicon; Barker Dirmann, Ascension Chamber President/CEO; Gus Gutierrez, BRPT-Lake and Garrett Ganucheau, EFCU Financial.
Seated L to R: David Alexander, Ascension Parish Schools; Ronnie Daigle, R.J. Daigle & Sons Contractors, Inc.; Lori Lowery, Shell Chemical Geismar; Yvonne Pellerin, St. Elizabeth Hospital; Jacob Waguespack, Faulk & Winkler, LLC; Amy Velez, Express Employment Professionals and Erin Lanoux, Ascension Parish Court Judge.
Not Pictured: Marie Broussard, Coldwell Banker One; Brandon Davis, Cox Media; Glynn Fontenot, Methanex and Raneé Rogers, MindWorx/ThreeSixtyEight.
© Copyright 2017. Ascension Chamber of Commerce.