Friday, 11 March 2011 14:12
Louisiana Business: Nungesser, Swamp Stomp, Idea Village, Unemployment Claims
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Nungesser and Louisiana Restuarant Association

The Louisiana Restaurant Association’s Greater New Orleans Chapter recently awarded Plaquemines Parish President Billy Nungesser with its Distinguished Service Award.  President Steve Woodruff presented Nungesser with the honor “in recognition for your support and dedication to the association and to the service industry.”


“We saw how Billy stood up not just for Plaquemines Parish, but for Louisiana during the Oil Spill and we wanted to recognize his tireless efforts,” said Woodruff.

The presentation was made during the Greater New Orleans Chapter’s annual awards banquet at Broussard’s Restaurant in New Orleans earlier this year.


Initial UI claims for the week ending March 5, 2011, increased to 3,545 from 3,196 for the week ending February 26, 2011. Continued UI weeks claimed for the week ending March 5, 2011, decreased to 45,618 from the previous week's total of 46,731.  


Idea Village


Entrepreneurs are being challenged to help solve water management issues worldwide. In partnership with the Greater New Orleans Foundation (GNOF), The Idea Village will host the 2011 Water Venture Development Challenge (Water Challenge™) on Monday, March 21, 2011. Water management and water-related issues are top of mind for many in Southeast Louisiana, and the goal of this collaborative initiative is to encourage entrepreneurs to develop and expand high-growth, for-profit ventures in the water industry that can scale to a global level. 


The three finalists will pitch to a panel of industry experts during The Idea Village’s annual New Orleans Entrepreneur Week (NOEW). The winner will receive $50,000 in seed funding, a technology package from HP, and eight weeks of business development support, including $5,000of legal services from Jones Walker..


“The Water Challenge seeks to ignite support for entrepreneurs developing innovative solutions to living with water,” said Tim Williamson, Co-Founder and CEO of The Idea Village. “Together with the Greater New Orleans Foundation, we want to encourage lasting, scalable solutions that turn one of the region’s greatest threats into one of its greatest assets.”


Home of one of the most productive estuarial environments on the planet, Southeast Louisiana’s abundance and resilience is the result of its location at the end of the Mississippi River watershed. Unfortunately, the cumulative effects of oil drilling, canal construction and flood protection systems are threatening the region’s vital ecological resources and fragile coastal lands. The Water Challenge represents a realization that in using an Integrated Water Management (IWM)approach to restore its ecosystem, Louisiana profits—financially, environmentally and culturally.


“To be successful, we must learn from Nature. We are looking for the best solutions that restore natural flows, replenish aquifers, detain and clean storm water to reduce flooding and pollution, and efficiently use and re-use water,” says Marco F. Cocito-Monoc, Ph. D and GNOF’s Director for Regional Initiatives.


Water Challenge Schedule of Events


9:30am - 10:30am 

The Water Challenge kicks-off with registration, networking and informational displays from regional water innovators.


10:30am – 12:30pm

Celebrating leadership and innovation in the water industry, David Waggonner of Waggonner & Ball Architects will give a keynote speech. A panel discussion on entrepreneurship and opportunities in Integrated Water Management, featuring the Water Challenge Advisory Committee, will follow. The committee includes:

Marco F. Cocito-Monoc-Director of Regional Initiatives, Greater New Orleans Foundation

Beth Galante -Director of New Orleans Resource Center and Office, Global Green USA

Robin Barnes-Executive Vice President, Greater New Orleans Inc.

Douglas Meffert-Director Tulane RiverSphere 

Moderator: Steve Picou-Sustainable Housing Agent, LSU AgCenter

Mark Davis-Senior Research Fellow and Director, Tulane Institute on Water Resources Law and Policy

Harvey Stern- Department of Environmental Affairs, Sewage & Water Board of New Orleans


12:30pm – 2pm  

Lunch and discussion of adaptation, resilience and innovation with water expert Bob Perciasepe, Deputy Administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. 


2pm – 4pm   

The Water Challenge culminates with three finalists pitching their innovative water solutions to the audience and a panel of industry experts. Judges include:

Gordon Austin-Director, Environmental Affairs Division, Sewage & Water Board of New Orleans

Bob Brown-Director, Business Council of New Orleans & the River Region

Gary Solomon-President/CEO, Crescent Bank & Trust

Marnie Winters-Director, Jefferson Parish Environmental Affairs


While the judges deliberate, John Gordon, Director IBM Smarter Cities, will give a keynote speech,. An awards ceremony will follow. 


Swamp Stomp Festival

the 3rd annual Louisiana Swamp Stomp Festival at Nicholls State University is right around the corner -- Friday, March 18 through Sunday, March 20. The purpose of the festival is to promote authentic Cajun/Creole culture with music, arts, crafts and food. There will also be a pre-festival, no-cost Bayou French Education Program, or "Tresors du Bayou." We expect some 1,300 area schoolchildren to attend this free educational event, after which the main festival will kick off. See for fest details, including ticket prices and band schedules.


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