SCIA honors members, inducts officers

September 4, 2007
Sept. 14-15; The Mutzie Show (Thibodaux)
September 6, 2007
September 4, 2007
Sept. 14-15; The Mutzie Show (Thibodaux)
September 6, 2007

The South Central Industrial Association honored one of its members and one of its member companies at its annual banquet last Wednesday.

The banquet also saw the installation of new officers.

Gulf Island Fabricators CEO and President Kerry Chauvin received the SCIA’s President Award.

“It really was a tremendous honor. It even tops, in my opinion, the honor I received being installed into the Business Hall of Fame in New Orleans two years ago,” said Chauvin.

The organization gives the award to recognize its successful members who contribute to their communities. Chauvin served as the organization’s president for the 1999-2000 term.

Chauvin accepted the award on behalf of his employees.

“These awards are not a one person thing. We’re a team here. We work together. There’s a lot of individuals that put a lot of blood sweat and tears into building this company and our organization and I think they deserve a part of it,” he said.

Chauvin’s company fabricates drilling and production platforms, as well as other specialized structures used by the oil and gas industry.

Its headquarters are based in Houma, but it does most of its fabrication work out of south Texas because of local infrastructure limitations.

Chauvin said there’s a lot of pressure all the time from economic organizations all over the world to move his operation. He said the only serious pressure his company is under now is to move its corporate office out of Houma and into Houston.

“I’m avoiding that as much as possible. This is my hometown and I’d like to keep it here,” said Chauvin. “I’m fighting tooth and nail to try to keep it here but there is a lot of pressure to move it to Houston where the center of the oil industry as we know it, especially in the United States, is located.”

Leland Robichaux received the Tillman Esteve Outstanding Member Award from the organization.

He has worked as a sales manager for Oil States Industries for 10 years and knew the man for whom the award takes its name, the late Tillman Esteve.

He and Tillman used to attend the same Mass and would speak often.

“I think he’s a great guy, great sense of humor, but dedicated… It was really touching because of that,” said Robichaux. “He’s quite a guy.”

Tillman was a founding member of SCIA member.

He avidly supported the organization, even though he was only a member for a year and a half.

He was the vice president of Bollinger Shipyards. He died of lung cancer in November of 1999.

On his death-bed he sent a letter to SCIA requesting his fellow members not send flowers for his funeral, but asking instead that each go out and recruit a new member for the organization.

“That’s the type of guy he was,” said Robichaux. “That’s how much he loved the SCIA.”

This award is given out once a year to distinguish an outstanding member in the organization. This was the fifth year the Esteve award has been given out.

Robichaux has been a SCIA member for nine years and a board member for eight years.

He’s held all the organization’s offices all the way up to president.

He served as president for the 2003-04 term.

The organization has 200 member firms and was established in 1997 to help businesses address issues facing industry.

“It’s probably one of the strongest, best organizations in south Louisiana and I’m very proud of it,” said Chauvin, who is one of the SCIA’s founding members. “It’s focused on its mission and hasn’t deviated into a lot of other directions. It’s been concentrating on what its sole mission is and basically to promote the needs of the industrial community.”

Robichaux agrees, adding, “It’s come a long way in a short period of time.”

The organization inducted its new officers and signified its directors for the year.

The new officers inducted were: Don Hingle, president, Whitney Bank; Tony Boudreaux, executive vice president, Superior Labor Services; Tony Alford, vice president, ASLR/Alford Services; Kirk Meche, secretary, Gulf Island Fabrication; and Charles Theriot, treasurer, Charles Theriot, CPA.

And the organization’s 2007 directors are: Kenneth Smith, T. Baker Smith, Inc.; Chet Morrison, Chet Morrison Contractors; Dionne Chouest, Edison Chouest Offshore; Ted Falgout, Port Fourchon; Steve Becnel, J. Ray McDermott, Inc.; Jane Arnette, SCIA executive director; and Kathy Doiron, SCIA assistant director.