|St. Mary Parish Role Models |
2017 St. Mary Parish Role Models
Clint Judice is the co-owner and manager of Northside Planting, a family sugarcane farm in Franklin, Louisiana. He is an active member of Church of the Assumption where he is a coordinator of the perpetual adoration chapel, Eucharistic minister and volunteer with the R.C.I.A program. He is also an active member in the Cursillo movement, the Franklin Ultreya and the St John/Hanson school board. In his spare time, he coaches youth baseball.
Dominique Thomas is the owner of Dominique’s Studio of Dance and Fitness which she started 22 years ago with a focus on the dance disciplines of ballet, tap and jazz. Dominique was the former artistic director for St. Mary Arts and Humanities Council, and a member of the Morgan City Main Street Board, where she spearheaded many events including the Christmas Festival and the Santa Paws Parade. She currently volunteers her time as the Central Catholic Cheer and Dance Team coach and has produced the Holy Cross Elementary Christmas play for the last 3 years.
Victoria Simoneaux is a financial advisor and partner with her father, Lyle Simoneaux, in Franklin. Currently, she serves as president of the Franklin Rotary Club and vice-president of St. Mary Landmarks. She also serves on the Historic District Board whose goal is to preserve Franklin's historical significance and charm. She is involved in the Hanson-St. John's Teacher Benefit Fund, an endowment fund to help provide funds to enhance teachers’ salaries for the Hanson-St. John Schools.
Claire Guarisco is the supervisor of Child Nutrition for St. Mary Parish Schools. She has served the St. Mary Parish School system for 25 years as a teacher, curriculum facilitator, assistant principal and principal. Claire was honored as the 2013 and 2015 St. Mary Parish Elementary Principal of the Year. She was recently asked to join the Southeast Dairy Association’s School Nutrition Advisory Council and supports her local church community in various roles including lector and Eucharistic Minister.
Drs. Jared and Carla Thurston
Drs. Jared and Carla Thurston care for members of their community through their medical practices. Carla Thurston was born and raised in Morgan City and practices as an internist with SLMA in Morgan City. Jared owns Thurston Ophthalmology in Morgan City and practices as a general ophthalmologist and eye surgeon. They support various local charitable organizations and St. Jude Children's Research Hospital.
Nakisha Singleton is the regional manager for Louisiana Campaign for Tobacco-Free Living where she’s played a major role in developing statewide tobacco-free healthcare policy protocols. She was the chair of the Louisiana Healthy Communities Coalition where she spent a decade researching the impacts of chronic disease. She is committed to leadership and youth development and has served as a youth mentor and volunteer in St. Mary Parish. Nakisha is a graduate of Leadership St. Mary, a program of the St. Mary Parish Chamber of Commerce.
2016 St. Mary Parish Role Models
(Left to Right) Danny Luke, agriculture; Lisa Parsiola, arts; Niki Fryou, education; Matthew and Phyllis Glover, public service or volunteerism; Jeremy Callais, business; Drs. Abby and Bill Cefalu, healthcare
The St. Mary Parish Foundation (SMPF), an affiliate of Community Foundation of Acadiana, is recognizing the parish’s role models from different industries at its event on April 17 at Shadowlawn.
The inaugural 2016 St. Mary Parish Role Models from different industries as follows: Danny Luke, agriculture; Lisa Parsiola, arts; Jeremy Callais, Business; Niki Fryou, education; Drs. Bill and Abby Cefalu, healthcare; Matthew and Phyllis Glover, public service or volunteerism. These individuals are being honored for their outstanding commitment to St. Mary Parish and their efforts to make the community a better place through their different fields. Learn more about them below.
Danny Luke is the co-manager of his family’s farm, Antoine Luke Farm, Inc., in the Centerville/Bayou Sale area. He is a member of the St. Mary Parish Farm Bureau Board, the St. Mary Parish Soil and Water Conservation District and the Knights of Columbus.
Lisa Parsiola, creative interior designer, utilizes her talents through The Brighton Group and Gulf Land Office in residential and commercial venues. She also well-known for her volunteerism with the Morgan City Youth program, her church and the community.
Jeremy Callais is an executive officer at M C Bank and was recently named a member of the American Bankers Association Community Bankers’ Council. He is the only non-CEO member of this 100-member council. Jeremy is known for his active involvement in schools, his church and community organizations. He is the past president of the Kiwanis Club.
Niki Fryou is the principal of Hattie Watts Elementary, a 2011 National Blue Ribbon School, in Patterson. Known to be innovative, she successfully implemented The Leader in Me program at her school. This program has had a profound effect on the behavior and attitudes of young students. Niki was honored as the 2012 Louisiana Elementary School Principal and was solely recognized as the 2013 National Distinguished Principal.
Drs. Abby and Bill Cefalu
Drs. Bill and Abby Cefalu are graduates of Central Catholic High School and Louisiana State University Medical School and the LSU School of Veterinary Medicine. Drs. Bill and Abby chose to return to their hometown, Morgan City, to establish their practices. Dr. Bill Cefalu is an internal medicine doctor for Prevention Plus Clinic, LLC. Dr. Abby Cefalu owns and practices at the Morgan City Veterinary Hospital. They support local schools and are involved in the community.
PUBLIC SERVICE OR VOLUNTEERISM
Matthew and Phyllis Glover
Matthew and Phyllis Glover give generously of their time and talents in community organizations and their church. They established the Glover-Stackhouse Scholarship in 2009 which has awarded four-year scholarships to 12 students to attend universities in Louisiana.