NSU could welcome first female President

Friends call her “Ginny.” Supporters call her “The woman for the job.” History will call her the first female President of Northwestern State University if Dr. Virginia Burkett is selected by the University of Louisiana System Board of Supervisors on Nov. 8.

Many believe Dr. Burkett, a longtime resident of Sabine Parish who works in Washington DC, leads the pack of the top six semi-finalists, from whom will be named a new President of NSU.

Dr. Burkett is currently Chief Scientist in the U.S. Department of the Interior, heading up the Climate and Land Use Change, Office of International Programs, U.S. Geological Survey (USGS).

She is the only candidate for NSU President with local roots who has earned global respect. Her legacy of intellect and integrity reaches from Louisiana to Washington, DC, and across the world.

“In my opinion and experience, integrity is the essence of successful leadership,” Dr. Burkett shared in her Letter of Interest submitted recently to the University of Louisiana (UL) System Board, along with her 25-page resumé.

Her extensive Curriculum Vitae (CV) credentials include

– Proven leadership and administrative expertise statewide, nationally, and globally

– Management of State and Federal budgets of over $140 million dollars annually

– Management of over 750 full-time employees

– Contributing Author to an Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report, which was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2007

– Recipient of the Diversity Award five times by the U.S. Secretary of the Interior (2021) and the U.S. Geological Survey (2020, 2017, 2015 and 2014)

– Recipient of Minority Student and Faculty Enhancement Award (2003), National Urban & Community Conference for Minority and Underserved Communities

– First female in the United State to direct a state fish and wildlife agency

– Invited lecturer at Harvard, Stanford, West Point, Columbia, Princeton, Wheaton, U.S. Council on Foreign Relations, Royal Institute of Foreign Affairs (UK) and other respected institutions

– Appointed by the White House to Co-Chair a $2.4 billion Global Change Research Program

– One of three generations to attend and graduate from NSU

– Long Purple Line inductee in 2011

– NSU Foundation Board from 2012 until present

– Service on approximately 70 other Boards, Committees and Science Panels

There are those who say Dr. Burkett does not have enough experience in academia to get the job. But her supporters say a lifetime spent in academia does not a leader make. They feel her stronger administrative skills are by far more desirable.

“As I have during every position I have every held, I would pour my energy, passion, and experience into leading NSU,” Dr. Burkett shared with the UL Board.

Her career is an achievement-filled example of commitment to excellence, intellect, an extraordinary work ethic and integrity.

When she left state government, the Baton Rouge Morning Advocate captured the great loss that was felt with an editorial cartoon depicting a bear sitting on a stump reading a newspaper with a headline about her departure. “Who will take care of me now?” the bear is lamenting.

Dr. Burkett has been published in dozens of peer-reviewed journals and definitive, encyclopedic publications (about 100 entries are listed on her CV) and one may doubt that is a complete list. She is that prolific. She also serves as Editor of the international scientific journal Regional Environmental Change and on the Editorial Board of Ethics in Science and Environmental Politics.

Dr. Burkett has given scores of media interviews ranging from The New York Times and US News and World Report to Louisiana Public Broadcasting and The Economist magazine. Those are only a few of the more recent examples. So, supporters say, she certainly has the experience and the wherewithal to represent NSU not only nationally, but around the world, and to represent it very well.

Dr. Burkett is a licensed Arborist, Master Gardener and holds a Private Pilot’s license. In addition, she is a beekeeper who harvests her own honey. She is a current member of the Louisiana State Museum of Geoscience Associates, (Charter Member); Louisiana Wildlife Biologists Association, (Life Member); American Association for the Advancement of Science and International Society of Arboriculture.

“To top it all off, Dr. Burkett is genuinely a nice person,” Laurie Gentry of Many shared on the supporters’ Burkett for NSU President Facebook page. “If you don’t know a lot about her, that’s because she is not the sort to self-promote or aggrandize her truly amazing achievements. Her work speaks for itself. The report she helped author which won a Nobel Prize is credited by many scientists and policymakers as being the catalyst for environmental change worldwide. Northwestern State University needs that kind of leadership.”

The UL System Board of Supervisors is welcoming input on whom they should select as NSU President. To send a letter of support, email northwesternpresidentialsearch@ulsystem.edu. Email will be forwarded to all Board Members. They are Vice Chair Elizabeth Pierre of Monroe, Parliamentarian Jimmy Clarke of Lafayette, Barry Busada of Shreveport, John Condos of Lake Charles, Steve Davison of Ruston, Lola Dunahoe of Natchitoches, Thomas Kitchen of Metairie, Mimi Methvin of Lafayette, Alejandro “Al Perkins of Prairieville, Dana Peterson, Virgil Robinson Jr. of New Orleans, Mark Romero of Lafayette, Kristine Russell of Thibodaux, Joe Salter of Florien, Brad Stevens of Hammond, and Southeastern Louisiana University Student Board Member L’Oreal Williams.

“I pledge to work with our Board of Supervisors, faculty, administrators, alumni, and Natchitoches community and, most importantly, the students of our wonderful university in leading NSU to achieve new levels of success with all of our endeavors. …I cannot think of a more important investment of a lifetime of hard work and experience other than serving as the President of NSU,” Dr. Burkett shared.

Dr. Burkett’s
Curriculum Vitae/Resume: https://tinyurl.com/kpbxpjkk


BOM Promotes Blaise LaCour

BOM Bank would like to congratulate Blaise LaCour on her promotion to Community Development Director. Blaise joined the BOM family in July of 2018 as a Marketing Assistant. She is a Natchitoches native, and a graduate of Natchitoches Central High School. Blaise received her bachelor’s in mass communication from Louisiana State University. She attends St. Augustine Catholic Church and enjoys participating in community events. This year, she is serving as the Natchitoches Area Chamber of Commerce Ambassador Chair. She is also a recipient of the 2021 Natchitoches Young Professionals 4 Under 40 award. In her spare time, Blaise enjoys spending time with her family and friends as well as cheering for the Tigers and the Saints. Congratulations, Blaise!


Monroe’s Chennault Aviation and Military Museum

The Chennault Aviation and Military Museum, located near the Monroe Regional Airport, honors not only the legacy of its namesake, General Claire Lee Chennault, one of the most accomplished men ever to wear our nation’s uniform, but other men and women connected to our state who bequeathed us a legacy of honor and courage.

The Museum is housed in a 1942 era building, one of the few surviving structures of the WWII era Selman Army Airfield, a navigator training base. The area is now the Monroe Regional Airport with the old 1942 era runways still serving after being lengthened for jet aircraft.

As one approaches the museum entrance a bronze statue of General Chennault donated by the Chinese government stands by the entrance. On the other side of the walkway is a memorial to fallen servicemembers, while a static display of various aircraft is across the street. There is a lot to see, even before you enter the museum proper.

The museum is neatly laid out, but absolutely jam-packed with artifacts. There is a room devoted to General Chennault’s life and career. The jewel encrusted dragon robe that was presented to Chennault by the Chinese government is perhaps the most unique item in what is quite an eclectic collection. There are also paintings, his original 1919 pilot wings, uniforms and other memorabilia.

There are displays of items telling the story of the men and women who served in every conflict the United States has fought from the Civil War to the present day. Aside from its varied military collections however, the most eclectic parts of the museum deal with subjects as varied as airlines and moonrocks.

The Monroe airport was the home of a small crop-dusting service that went on to become Delta Airlines. The museum tells the story of the airline’s early days with original posters, schedules, uniforms and other paraphernalia.

Did you know that Monroe, Louisiana is the home to a moonrock brought back to Earth by astronauts Eugene Cernan and Harrison Schmitt of Apollo 17? NASA Rock # 70035, formed from a lunar lava flow about 3.8 billion years ago, lies in a display case in the Chennault Museum next to a display honoring space shuttle astronaut and West Monroe native and Jim Halsell.

The Chennault Aviation & Military Museum is an amazing place to visit and a family friendly treat for history buffs of all ages. The museum has no admission charge. The museum’s address is 701 Kansas Lane Monroe, LA 71203 318-362-5540.


TicketSmarter becomes Northwestern State’s official ticketing partner

TicketSmarter has announced a multiyear partnership with Northwestern State athletics, which TicketSmarter will serve as NSU’s official ticketing partner.

TicketSmarter’s online platform will provide Demon fans a seamless experience when it comes to buying and selling tickets.

“Northwestern State is a true representation of the city of Natchitoches, and we look forward to working together to build an enhanced ticketing experience” said TicketSmarter CEO Jeff Goodman. “The partnership with Northwestern State is an extension of our strategy to create valuable partnerships with college athletic programs across the U.S.”

Added Nathan Razo, Northwestern State’s general manager for corporate partnerships: “We are excited to have TicketSmarter as an official partner of NSU Athletics. As we moved toward an emphasis in mobile ticketing, we are excited to offer Demon fans more opportunities and avenues to support NSU Athletics.”

Northwestern State will become one of TicketSmarter’s 250+ partner in college athletics, as TicketSmarter continues to experience growth in the ticketing world. In addition to Northwestern State, TicketSmarter is partnered with several members of the Southland Conference, to connect fans to more live events.

Through the partnership, TicketSmarter will acquire exclusive marketing and sponsorship rights for Northwestern State, while providing Demon fans a safe, trusted platform to buy and sell tickets.

About TicketSmarter

TicketSmarter helps customers from all walks of life experience the power and excitement of live events by giving back through children’s charities and creating helpful partnerships. $1 from every transaction will help our charitable partners, including St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, V Foundation and Quarterbacking Children’s Health Foundation.

TicketSmarter is the title sponsor of the TicketSmarter Birmingham Bowl with ESPN Events. Additionally, TicketSmarter is the official ticket resale partner of PBR, NJCAA, over 35 collegiate conferences including Pac-12 Conference, and 100+ universities nationwide.

About Northwestern State Athletics:

Northwestern State’s athletic department offers 14 Division I athletic programs, providing opportunities for 375 student-athletes. A member of the Southland Conference, the Demons and Lady Demons are the athletic representatives of Northwestern State University, the longest single-site institution of higher learning in Louisiana – having operated at its current campus since the university’s founding in 1884.

Website: TicketSmarter.com


Notice of Death – September 14, 2021

SABINE:
Jessie Wayne Ezernack
November 1, 1973 – September 13, 2021
Service: Friday, September 17 at 2 pm at New Freedom Fellowship Church

Betty Jo Walker Oxley
January 15, 1936 – September 13, 2021
Service: Thursday, September 16 at 2 pm at Siloam Baptist Church

Euel “Doc” Dillard
November 26, 1926 – September 12, 2021
Service: Thursday, September 16 at 10 am at Church of Jesus Christ Of Latter Day Saints

NATCHITOCHES:
Emile Crumble
September 06, 1976
Service: Saturday, September 18 at 11 am at the Winnfield Memorial Funeral Home Chapel, located at 318 North Street in Natchitoches

Linda Dianne Moore Byles
May 26, 1950 – September 09, 2021
Service: Saturday, September 18 at 1 pm at Central Baptist Church Cemetery in Robeline

Gloria Shields
September 12, 2021
Arrangements TBA

Jim McArthur
March 15, 1939 – September 09, 2021
Service: Wednesday, September 15 at 10 am at Central Baptist Church in Robeline

Elijah L. Thomas
January 14, 2006 – September 09, 2021
Arrangements TBA

Felenn Sowell
September 08, 2021
Arrangements TBA

Fannie Willis
September 07, 2021
Service: Saturday, September 18 at 10 am at the St. John Baptist Church Cemetery in Powhatan

Lloyd “REV” Smith
September 07, 2021
Service: Saturday, September 18 at 2 pm in the Winnfield Funeral Home Chapel

Minnie Johnson
September 04, 2021
Arrangements TBA

RED RIVER:
Omacille Nettles Beckham
January 25, 1937 – September 09, 2021
Service: Thursday, September 16 at 12 pm at Bailey Funeral Home Chapel, Haynesville

Ronnie “Boz” Darrell Boswell
March 29, 1942 – September 11, 2021
Service: Sunday, September 19 at 2 pm at Davis Springs Southern Methodist Church


Notice of Death – August 26, 2021

 

SABINE:
James Leonard LaRue
July 8, 1946 – August 23, 2021
Arrangements TBA

Stevie Carroll
October 6, 1941 – August 22, 2021
Arrangements TBA

WINN:
Barry Louis Phelps
September 24, 1957 – August 20, 2021
Memorial service arrangements will be announced by the family at a later date.

Sheri McManus Miller
February 17, 1969 – August 24, 2021
Service: Friday, August 27 at 1 pm at Southern Funeral Home

Annette Brigance Skains
May 10, 1964 – August 19, 2021
Service: Saturday, August 28 at 10 am at the First Presbyterian Church in Winnfield

NATCHITOCHES:
Dorothy “Dot” Roig Knecht
August 06, 1930 – August 24, 2021
Service: Monday, August 30 at 1 pm at Trinity Episcopal Church

John Thomas Colligan
January 23, 1975 – August 19, 2021
Service: Saturday, August 28 at 1 pm at Blanchard-St. Denis Funeral Home

Theresa “Terri” Durr
March 12, 1960 – August 25, 2021
Service: Tuesday, August 31 at 10 am at the Bethel Methodist Church

Virginia M. Wilson James
October 05, 1928 – August 25, 2021
Service: Friday, August 27 at 10 am at Beulah Methodist Cemetery in Marthaville

Lori Ann O’Bannon Savell
May 16, 1971 – August 24, 2021
Service: Sunday, August 29 at 10 am at 1st Baptist Church of Provencal

Paul O’Con
April 01, 1933 – August 24, 2021
Service: Saturday, August 28 at 10 am at Blanchard-St. Denis Funeral Home

Porcia Hooper
August 24, 2021
Arrangements TBA

Pastor Carl Means
August 23, 2021
Service: Saturday, August 28 at 10 am at the Christian Outreach Center, 106 Brickyard Road, Natchitoches

Sylvia Morrow
August 20, 2021
Service: Saturday, August 28 at 2 pm at the MLK Center of Natchitoches


2020 Census Results – Sabine Parish Population Decreased

The Census Bureau released its 2020 Census results last Thursday. The data shows that Sabine Parish’s population decreased by 8.6% in the last 10 years from 24,233 in 2010 to 22,155 in 2020, a decrease of 2,078 people (208 people per year).

Possible effects of population decline are:

fewer schools, due to there being fewer children;
a drop in house prices because more homes are unoccupied;
fewer new homes being built;
less demand for rented accommodation;
fewer care facilities;
less turnover of product for shops and businesses;
fewer sports facilities;
fewer people going to the theatre, cinema or concerts, so these facilities are eventually cut back;
local residents have to travel further to reach the facilities they want.

To dive into more detail about Sabine Parish Census Data from the 2019 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates, click the file below:

Population Changes Across the Country Since the 2010 Census

Yesterday’s release reveals changes in the size and distribution of the population across the United States. The population of U.S. metro areas grew by 9% from 2010 to 2020, resulting in 86% of the population living in U.S. metro areas in 2020, compared to 85% in 2010.

“Many counties within metro areas saw growth, especially those in the south and west. However, as we’ve seen in our annual population estimates, our nation is growing slower than it used to,” said Marc Perry, a senior demographer at the Census Bureau. “This decline is evident at the local level where around 52% of the counties in the United States saw their 2020 Census populations decrease from their 2010 Census populations.”

County and metro area highlights:

The largest county in the United States in 2020 remains Los Angeles County, with over 10 million people.
The largest city (incorporated place) in the United States in 2020 remains New York, with 8.8 million people.
312 of the 384 U.S. metro areas gained population between 2010 and 2020.
The fastest-growing U.S. metro area between the 2010 Census and 2020 Census was The Villages, FL, which grew 39% from about 93,000 people to about 130,000 people.
72 U.S. metro areas lost population from the 2010 Census to the 2020 Census. The U.S. metro areas with the most significant percentage declines were Pine Bluff, AR, and Danville, IL, at -12.5 percent and -9.1 percent, respectively. 


Opportunity: 8 Positions Open

POSITION AVAILABLE #1

JOB VACANCY: Pre-K Teacher
QUALIFICATIONS: Certification according to the State Department of Education as a Pre-K Teacher.

SALARY: According to parish school salary schedule

TERMS OF EMPLOYMENT: 9 months

DEADLINE: Friday, August 27, 2021

WHERE TO APPLY:
Linda G. Page, Director of Personnel
Natchitoches Parish School Board
P. O. Box 16
Natchitoches, LA 71458-0016
(318) 352-2358

APPLICATION WEBSITE:
 npsb.la

APPLICATIONS: Application packet should consist of a letter of application, resume’, official transcript, and one letter of reference.


POSITION AVAILABLE #2

POSITION: Early Childhood Community Outreach Liaison

SALARY: According to Natchitoches Parish Salary Schedule.

QUALIFICATIONS: • Associate’s degree required, Bachelor’s degree preferred, education, counseling, social work, education, education policy, or related area preferred
• Knowledgeable of the Natchitoches Parish Community
• Leadership qualities and ability to work effectively with Early Childhood Education Community Engagement Coordinator, Early Childhood program partners, program partners, businesses, and community leaders.
• Authentic, effective, and professional communication, both verbally and written
• Excellent public speaking and presentation skills and the ability to make presentations to large groups of people
• Strong project management and organization skills, with the ability to track intricate details and prioritize multiple initiatives and timelines
• Ability to work a flexible schedule
TERMS OF EMPLOYMENT: 9 months, Part time position (Contracted)

DEADLINE: Friday, August 25, 2021

WHERE TO APPLY:
Linda G. Page, Director of Personnel
Natchitoches Parish School Board
P. O. Box 16
Natchitoches, LA 71458-0016
(318) 352-2358

APPLICATION WEBSITE: npsb.la

APPLICATIONS: Application packet should consist of a letter of application, resume’, official transcript, and one letter of reference.


POSITION AVAILABLE #3

JOB VACANCY: Early Childhood Office Secretary

QUALIFICATIONS:
• Knowledge of Early Childhood, Time and attendance (TOTS) system, Child Care Assistance Application (CCAP), Child Care Civil Background Check (CCBC), and LA B to 3 scholarship a plus
• High School Diploma or equivalent
• Experience as a secretary or equivalent work: demonstrate knowledge of basic office procedures and current technology; typing/keyboarding/proficient in Microsoft Office; and other secretarial skills.

SALARY: According to parish school salary schedule

TERMS OF EMPLOYMENT: 12 months

DEADLINE: Friday, August 27, 2021

WHERE TO APPLY:
Linda G. Page, Director of Personnel
Natchitoches Parish School Board
P. O. Box 16
Natchitoches, LA 71458-0016
(318) 352-2358

APPLICATION WEBSITE:  npsb.la

APPLICATIONS: Application packet should consist of a letter of application, resume’, official transcript, and one letter of reference


POSITION AVAILABLE #4

POSITION: Early Childhood Education Family and Community Engagement Coordinator

SALARY: According to Natchitoches Parish Salary Schedule.

QUALIFICATIONS:

• Associate’s degree required, Bachelor’s degree preferred, Degree in early childhood education, counseling, social work, education, education policy, or related area preferred
• Leadership qualities and ability to work effectively with students, teachers, parents, businesses, and community leaders.
• Authentic, effective, and professional communication, both verbally and written
• Excellent public speaking and presentation skills and the ability to make presentations to large groups of people
• Strong project management and organization skills, with the ability to track intricate details and prioritize multiple initiatives and timelines
• Ability to work a flexible schedule

TERMS OF EMPLOYMENT: 12 months

DEADLINE: Friday, August 27, 2021

WHERE TO APPLY:
Linda G. Page, Director of Personnel
Natchitoches Parish School Board
P. O. Box 16
Natchitoches, LA 71458-0016
(318) 352-2358

APPLICATION WEBSITE: npsb.la

APPLICATIONS: Application packet should consist of a letter of application, resume’, official transcript, and one letter of reference


POSITION AVAILABLE #5

JOB VACANCIES: LIBRARIAN

SITE LOCATION(S): East Natchitoches Elem./Middle School

QUALIFICATIONS: Certification according to State Department of Education as a Librarian.

SALARY: According to parish school salary schedule.

WHERE TO APPLY:
Linda G. Page, Personnel Director
Natchitoches Parish School Board
P. O. Box 16
Natchitoches, LA 71458-0016
(318) 352-2358
Fax: (318) 352-8138

APPLICATION WEBSITE: npsb.la


POSITION AVAILABLE #6

JOB VACANCIES: Physical Education Teacher

SITE LOCATION(S): East Natchitoches Elem./Middle School

QUALIFICATIONS: Certification according to State Department of Education as a P.E. Teacher.

SALARY: According to parish school salary schedule.

WHERE TO APPLY:

Linda G. Page, Personnel Director
Natchitoches Parish School Board
P. O. Box 16
Natchitoches, LA 71458-0016
(318) 352-2358
Fax: (318) 352-8138

APPLICATION WEBSITE: npsb.la


POSITION AVAILABLE #7

JOB VACANCIES: Middle School Math Teacher

SITE LOCATION(S): Natchitoches Jr. High School

QUALIFICATIONS: Certification according to State Department of Education as a Middle School Math Teacher.

SALARY: According to parish school salary schedule.

WHERE TO APPLY:
Linda G. Page, Personnel Director
Natchitoches Parish School Board
P. O. Box 16
Natchitoches, LA 71458-0016
(318) 352-2358
Fax: (318) 352-8138

APPLICATION WEBSITE: npsb.la


POSITION AVAILABLE #8

JOB VACANCIES: Middle School English Teacher

SITE LOCATION(S): Natchitoches Jr. High School

QUALIFICATIONS: Certification according to State Department of Education as an English Teacher.

SALARY: According to parish school salary schedule.

WHERE TO APPLY:
Linda G. Page, Personnel Director
Natchitoches Parish School Board
P. O. Box 16
Natchitoches, LA 71458-0016
(318) 352-2358
Fax: (318) 352-8138

APPLICATION WEBSITE: npsb.la


Podcast: Marcus Jones joins Billy West LIVE

PART ONE
Marcus Jones joins Billy West Live and discusses his Interim Appointment as President of Northwestern State University.

The interview includes Marcus’ educational background and experiences teaching and in administration of higher education.

Marcus answers questions about his vision for the immediate future of NSU and increasing on-campus enrollment for Students in Natchitoches.

PART TWO

Marcus Jones answers questions related to his commitment to higher education in general and specifically related to keeping NSU competitive in Division 1 Athletics, especially football.

Marcus also discusses the position of permanent President of NSU and whether or not he will be a candidate for that position. Marcus also discusses his views on whether a terminal degree is necessary or required to be the permanent President of NSU.


Many Police Officer Stops Severe Domestic Violence Situation

Many Police Officer Matt Cook and Officer Evan Eddington were in the right place at the right time shortly after midnight when a woman approached Officer Cook outside the back of a local convenience store.

The woman said she was driving from Alexandria to Lufkin Texas when her boyfriend became physically abusive, took her cell phone and said he was going to wire her mouth shut, torture her and set her on fire.

She convinced him to let her pull into a Many convenience store and then walked out the back door of the building after she saw a police officer in the back parking lot.

When officers approached her vehicle parked in front of the store, the man had fled. A search was conducted in the area by Many Police and Sabine Sheriff’s office and Eliezer Rodriquez was found on the roof of a local business by Officer Eddington.

He was arrested and charged with false imprisonment, battery on a dating partner and flight from a police officer. Rodriquez has a lengthy criminal history of aggravated assault on police officer, burglary and drug charges in other states. He is currently in custody at the Sabine Parish Detention Center.