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GICC Names Civic Service Award and Business Impact Award Winners - Tuesday, January 10, 2017

The Greater Iberia Chamber of Commerce has selected its winners of the 2016 Civic Service Award and Business Impact Award. The Business Impact Award is given to recognize and promote our communityís culture of innovation and its entrepreneurial spirit as well as celebrate the business success of Iberia Parish. Nominees need to have some physical aspect in Iberia Parish and is encouraged (but not mandatory) to be a current member of the Chamber. The Civic Service Award is given to recognize an outstanding citizen who has demonstrated exemplary service through their volunteerism. With so many citizens constantly volunteering in our community for civic projects, various charities, schools, and churches, this award is given to honor those who go above and beyond the regular call of service.

The winners of the 2016 Business Impact Awards are Cajun Sugar Company and The Bayou Companies, and Aegion Company. The Cajun Sugar Company, LLC (formerly Cajun Sugar Co-Operative) underwent a massive re-organization this year, partnering with Callier Properties and LASUCA (Louisiana Sugar Cane Co-Operative) to increase sugar production in Iberia Parish. After facing the challenge of maintaining a competitive price to pay farmers and growers, The Cajun Sugar Company not only convinced their farmers to join them in the new initiative, they also introduced a system designed to yield a higher-quality sugar, making them one of the best producers in the state. Currently CSC produces approximately 100,000 tons of raw sugar in one growing season. In 2016, CSC nearly doubled their revenues from the previous year, maintaining their 80 fulltime employees while also hiring 80 seasonal employees from the parish to help with the growing season. The Bayou Companies at the Port of Iberia has joined with Shell Corporation to create a specialized coating product to be used for deep water pipe insulation. This collaboration has resulted in the $14 million expansion of facilities in Iberia Parish, adding more than 46,000 square feet to the plant to manufacture this new product, as well as stimulating the local economy. The Bayou Companies at the Port of Iberia is the only company that can apply this system in the world allowing for greater potential expansion as the technical challenges of retrieving oil and gas in ever more demanding areas increases. As pressures, temperatures and depths increase, Bayou is positioning itself to meet the demands of the environments and its customers.

The winner of the 2016 Civic Service Award is JoAnn Hooper Parker, President of Pro-Log, Inc. Mrs. Parker has been an Iberia Parish resident for over 40 years. During that time Mrs. Parker has started multiple businesses while raising a family here in New Iberia with her husband of 50 years, Mr. Thomas Ronald Parker. Mrs. Parker is a founding member of the Bayou Teche Republican Womenís Club, a civic organization that has donated over $50,000 to charitable causes since its inception. She also has an active role in the Louisiana Federation of Republican Women, currently serving her second term as Treasurer for the organization. Mrs. Parkerís tireless efforts have extended the reach of the ĎOne Touch Pillowí program, which send home crafted and prayed over pillows to deployed troops around the world and women fighting cancer around the country. As an active member of the Highland Baptist Church, Mrs. Parker has participated in mission trips to over 10 foreign countries, donating time and money to spread a Christian message to others. She helped establish the Highland Baptist Christian School which is now educates over 400 students in the Parish. Mrs. Parkerís work with the church has also spread to the people of Ukraine, a Russian state she visited during one of her mission trips. She designed and donated a mobile medical unit to serve people in rural areas of the country and has participated in establishing an orphanage to serve children in need of homes. A common theme in Mrs. Parkerís volunteer work has been advocacy for women around the world. This advocacy isnít more apparent than with her work with the Iberia Pregnancy Resource Center and Clinic. Through her donations and many hours of volunteer time as President and a member of the Board of Directors, Mrs. Parker has insured that women in Iberia Parish receive care if they need it.

The Civic Service and Business Impact awards will be presented at the 2017 Annual Banquet held in Cade, Louisiana on January 19, 2017 and 6:00pm. This yearís event is sponsored by Cox Communications and Iberia Medical Center. To purchase tickets for this event, please contact Kelly at 337-364-1836. The Greater Iberia Chamber of Commerce has been advocating for the local business community since 1939. Led by a twenty-one member volunteer board of directors, who direct the Chamberís mission of improving the business environment so our members grow and prosper, the Greater Iberia Chamber of Commerce contributes to the economic prosperity of the community, which ultimately enhances the quality of life. With the addition of these new members for 2017, the Chamber wishes to continue its mission while promoting growth and positive change for the Parish.


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