Rene Cross was born and raised in New Iberia, Louisiana. At the age of 24, Cross was hired as a general superintendent of H&B Construction in charge of levee and flood control projects. He then moved to Plaquemines parish, where he resides to this day. While with H&B Construction, he oversaw the construction of some 125 miles of main line Mississippi river levee and over 100 miles of hurricane protection levee. In 1986, he started Rene Cross Construction, Inc. The company has master service agreements with most of the major and independent oil companies in Louisiana. In 1994, he and a partner started Cypress Cove Marina, Inc. in Venice, Louisiana. To date the marina is a $14 million investment in the tourism and recreational hunting and fishing industries in Plaquemines parish.
Jas Gill is a retired executive with more than 35 years of leadership experience in business management, marketing, sales, manufacturing, engineering and technology. In December 2007, Gill retired from Cytec Building Block Chemicals in Westwego, where he had served as president for seven years and Vice-President of Manufacturing for five years. From 1984 – 1997, Gill was Director of Technology and Commercial Development and later Director of Manufacturing at Olin Corporation in Lake Charles. Gill most recently served on the State of Louisiana Infrastructure Assessment Task Force following Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. As a board member of the Greater New Orleans, Inc., Gill has organized and led the Petrochemical Cluster for the past seven years. Gill is a member of the Board of Directors for Greater New Orleans United Way. He has also served on the board of several petrochemical industry associations and testified before Congress on various chemical industry issues.
Andy Guinn, of Lake Charles, is the president of Port Aggregates Inc. and is a member of the Calcasieu River Waterway Harbor Safety Committee.
Tom Henning is currently Executive Vice President/General Counsel for Cameron Communications LLC, a telecommunication company based in Southwest Louisiana, and is also Of Counsel with the Lake Charles, La. law firm of Stockwell, Sievert, Viccellio, Clements and Shaddock. Mr. Henning recently served on the Board of Directors and as Secretary/General Counsel of US Unwired, Inc., a NASDAQ-N.M. listed public company, until Sprint/Nextel purchased US Unwired in August 2005. Mr. Henning has previously served on numerous non-profit community boards and institutions. He currently sits on the boards of the McNeese State University Foundation Board, the West Calcasieu-Cameron Hospital Foundation Board, and SWLHS Inc. (a for-profit subsidiary of Lake Charles Memorial Hospital). In addition to being a member of several bar associations and professional organizations, Mr. Henning is a Fellow in the American Bar Foundation. Mr. Henning is a native Sulphur, Louisiana.
Patricia Schuster Leblanc
Patricia Schuster Leblanc, of Metairie, is the former chair of the Jefferson Parish Home Rule Charter Advisory Board. Leblanc received a bachelor’s of arts from Tulane University and later received a law degree from Loyola University School of Law.
Ray Lasseigne, of Bossier City, is the president and co-owner of TMR Exploration, Inc., Sandia Drilling, LLC and Langston Drilling, LLP. Lasseigne is also serving as the president of the Bossier Levee Board of Commissioners.
Walter Leger, Jr.
Walter J. Leger, Jr. of Arabi is a lawyer, businessman, and civic leader. In 2000, Leger served as Chairman of the Board of the New Orleans Regional Chamber of Commerce. He previously served as Chairman of the St. Bernard Chamber Council. From 1998 to 1999, he served as co-Chairman of the Metrovision Economic Development Partnership. Leger is a co-owner and past President of the New Orleans Zephyrs Triple A Professional Baseball Team and is also a partner in the law firm of Leger, Shaw & DeSue. He serves on the NFL Stadium Advisory Commission and is a member of the New Orleans Saints Community Advisory Committee. Leger has a special interest in improving education and serves as a member of LSU s College of Arts and Sciences Advisory Board, and is on the Board of Directors of the Foundations of the LSU Health Science Center, Delgado Community College, and Nunez Community College. He also is a Board Member of the University New Orleans Business Alliance, the World Trade Center, and Chalmette Medical Center. Leger is a member of the Tulane Cancer Center Advisory Council and LSU's Stanley S. Scott Cancer Center Board, and the Directors' Council of the Louisiana Cancer Research Consortium.
Roy O. Martin, III
Roy O. Martin III, of Alexandria, is an officer and director at Roy O. Martin Lumber Company, LLC. Martin is a member of the Greater Alexandria Economic development Committee and the LSU Health Sciences Foundation.
Chester "Chet" Morrison
Chet Morrison is the founder, owner and chief executive officer of an energy service company that builds and installs offshore platforms and pipelines. He incorporated Chet Morrison Contractors in 1983, beginning with residential contracts before moving to commercial and municipal projects and finally to industrial projects. Throughout the past fifteen years the organization has grown through integration and long-range vision, expanding services to include pipeline and diving operations. The company currently works a fleet of four offshore pipeline barges and five diving and support vessels and employs over 1,000 persons. In addition to the construction activities, Chet Morrison is active in an oil and gas production company based in Texas and manages a large wildlife estuary located at the bottom of the Atchalafaya Basin in St. Mary Parish. He is currently president of the South Central Industrial Association, a regional group representing over 200 member firms and 35,000 employees.
Sean Reilly is COO and President of the Outdoor Division of Lamar Advertising Company, an outdoor advertising company headquartered in Baton Rouge and Louisiana's only NASDAQ 100 company. Mr. Reilly has served in leadership positions on numerous non-profit and community boards and institutions. He is currently on the Board of the Public Affairs Research Council of Louisiana, a member of the Board of Supervisors of the Louisiana Community and Technical College System and the Board of Visitors of the LSU Manship School of Mass Communications, where he taught as an adjunct professor. In addition to being an executive at Lamar, Mr. Reilly is a member of the Young Presidents Organization and serves on the Board of Reserve Telephone Company, Inc. Mr. Reill\y has served in various capacities at Lamar since 1978, then a family owned private business. He served in the Louisiana Legislature as a State Representative from March 1988 to January 1996, during which tenure he served as Vice-Chair of the Ways and Means committee and as member of the Education, Commerce, and Legislative Audit Advisory committees as well as a member of The State Bond Commission.
John E. Smith
A banking executive with more than 30 years of experience, John E. Smith served as the 2006 Chair of the Greater Slidell Area Chamber of Commerce. He is a graduate of Bob Jones University in Greenville, South Carolina who has served as the president of the Northshore Banking Division of Whitney National Bank since 2003. Before joining Whitney Bank, Smith managed many several divisions of New Orleans-based Hibernia bank, starting in 1981. He also serves on the Board of Directors of the Hospice Foundation of the South, the Northshore Regional Medical Center and the St. Tammany Economic Development Foundation and on the Board of Commissioners of the St. Tammany Economic Development District.
Sen. Sharon Weston-Broome
Sharon Weston-Broome, of Baton Rouge, is the president pro-tempore of the Louisiana Senate and represents the 15th District.
Sen. Joel Chaisson II
Joel Chaisson II, of Destrehan, is the president of the Louisiana Senate and represents the 19th District.
Rep. Karen Carter-Peterson
Karen Carter-Peterson, of New Orleans, is the speaker pro-tempore of the House of Representatives and represents the 93rd district.
Rep. Jim Tucker
Jim Tucker, of Algeirs, is the Speaker of the House of Representatives and represents the 86th district.