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2015 Baton Rouge Attorney Profiles
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Refinery positions itself to handle more U.S. shale crude

Photo provided by Motiva -- Motiva refinery at Norco and/or Convent.

Motiva Enterprises’ plan to run its Norco and Convent refineries as a single operation by linking them via a major pipeline may signal that the company, like a number of other refiners, is positioning itself to handle more of the “super light” crude gushing from U.S. shale formations. “One of the challenges with North American refinery operations …… Continue reading →

Business Honors for April 19, 2015

Pamela Bounds, Berente Companies

The Baton Rouge Area Chamber presented its Volunteer of the Year Award to Pamela Bounds, of Berente Companies; Community Champion Award posthumously to Ben Miller Jr.; and Project of the Year Award to Pod Pack International. Bounds also was appointed as a BRAC ambassador and is a member of the… Continue reading →

Business briefs for April 19, 2015

Brad Grantham, Zehnder Communications

The Better Business Bureau is taking nominations for the 2015 Douglas Manship Sr. Torch Awards for Ethics in Business. The award is open to all for-profit businesses that serve Ascension, Assumption, East Baton Rouge, East Feliciana, Iberville, Livingston, Pointe Coupee, St. Helena, St. James, Tangipahoa, West… Continue reading →

Baker Walgreens building sold for $6.4 million

The Walgreens pharmacy building at the corner of Groom and Plank roads in Baker has been sold for $6.4 million. 6485 Groom LLC, a New York-based partnership named after the address of the pharmacy, bought the property in a deal that was filed Thursday with the East Baton Rouge Clerk of Court’s office. The seller was FR&W… Continue reading →

Bardwell Homes buys building for new offices

Bardwell Homes, a local homebuilder, has purchased an office building on Bluebonnet Boulevard, north of Interstate 10, and will move its operations there. Bardwell paid $875,000 for the 5,000-square-foot building at 5153 Bluebonnet. The builder plans to take up about half of the space and lease out the remaining portion to a local investment advisory firm. The… Continue reading →

LLOG begins production from deepwater hub

Covington-based LLOG Exploration Co. and joint-venture partner Blackstone Energy Group have begun production from a massive, floating production system in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico. Delta House floating production system lies about 130 miles southeast of New Orleans. The hub and platform can handle peak daily production of 100,000 barrels of oil and 240 million cubic feet… Continue reading →

Office market remains strong in Baton Rouge area

The office space market in Baton Rouge is expected to remain strong in 2015, but falling oil prices could have an impact. Branon Pesnell, with Beau Box Commercial Real Estate, said if oil price remain low, local engineering firms could lay off employees and downsize the amount of space they are taking up. Pesnell discussed the office market during the Trends… Continue reading →

Baton Rouge apartment market may face glut

There are nearly 6,000 apartment units that planned to be built in metro Baton Rouge by the end of the year, a number that has one person who tracks the multi-family housing market concerned. “We could end up with a glut of units,” said Wesley Moore, with Cook, Moore & Associates. Moore discussed the state of the local apartment market at… Continue reading →

Smaller banks pulling back on real estate lending

The smallest local banks are pulling out of construction and development lending because of concerns over regulatory changes brought on by Dodd-Frank consumer protection act, a speaker at the annual Trends in Real Estate seminar said Thursday. Brian Andrews, with the Real Estate Research Institute at LSU’s E.J. Ourso College of Business, said small local banks don’t… Continue reading →

Industrial real estate seeing 'brake pumping'

The industrial real estate market in Baton Rouge is seeing some “brake pumping” caused by the sudden drop in oil prices. Scot Guidry, with Mike Falgoust & Associates, said some firms are making adjustments to deal with the 50 percent drop in oil prices that has happened over the past year. Guidry was discussing the industrial real… Continue reading →

Baton Rouge real estate professionals hear encouraging words about U.S. economy, hope for housing market

After the pain of the Great Recession, the national economy has posted two years of a decent recovery, the chief economist for the National Association of Realtors said Thursday at a seminar in Baton Rouge.
“Market conditions are improving from a very low base,” said Lawrence Yun, chief economist and senior vice president of research for the National Association… Continue reading →

Baton Rouge’s Marucci Sports hires executive to go deeper into Big League

Marucci Sports has hired a former Louisville Slugger executive as head of big league player relations, a move the Baton Rouge company expects will allow it to make further inroads with professional baseball players. Chuck Schupp, who retired from Louisville Slugger in 2014, is Marucci’s first in-clubhouse sales representative. He brings a unique understanding… Continue reading →

Louisiana small business award winners announced

Seven statewide small business award winners were announced Wednesday by Michael Ricks, Louisiana state director for the U.S. Small Business Administration. Todd E. Matherne, of Renaissance Publishing in Metairie, was named Small Business Person of the Year. Mark S. Boucree, of Capital One in New Orleans, was named Financial Services Champion; Courtney T. Davis, of Bart’s… Continue reading →

LSU cyber security group announces partnership

LSU’s Stephenson Disaster Management Institute will partner with a California company in an effort to solve cyber security issues for critical infrastructure. The institute will use California-based Ixia’s PerfectStorm test in its “cyber range” to simulate cyber attacks on structures that provide basic but vital services, such as power stations and water treatment plants.… Continue reading →

Thousands of Louisiana tax filers on the hook to repay 'Obamacare' health subsidies

Advocate staff photo by TRAVIS SPRADLING -- Eleanor Faust, right,of Baton Rouge assembles her Affordable Care Act paperwork Tuesday. Faust got  help with her taxes from Marlene Martinez, Volunteer Income Tax Assistance site coordinator for Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Baton Rouge.

Many last-minute tax filers may be in for an unpleasant surprise as they race to beat the federal filing deadline that hits at midnight Wednesday. For those who received federal subsidies that helped them buy health coverage in 2014, the federal government might want a chunk of that money back. An estimated 45,000 Louisiana residents will either… Continue reading →

Panelists to discuss employee retention at LSU Flores MBA event

A panel of experts will offer insight into talent retention in the workplace at the LSU Flores MBA Alumni Association’s 2015 Spring Training Symposium being held from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. Thursday in room 1420 of the Business Education Complex. The panelists are Craig Juengling, owner of Juengling & Associates; Tommy Karam, instructor in the LSU… Continue reading →

City dock expansion in the works to handle more riverboat stops in Baton Rouge

Advocate staff photo by PATRICK DENNIS -- John and Nancy Yingling, from New Jersey, passengers from the American Queen riverboat, come ashore in Baton Rouge for an afternoon of touring. Last year, about 5,000 passengers visited Baton Rouge through 26 riverboat dockings. City officials plan to expand the city dock to accommodate a growing number riverboat visits.

The increasing number of riverboat dockings in Baton Rouge has city-parish officials looking at expanding the city dock to accommodate multiple vessels. The city of Baton Rouge and the Downtown Development District are soliciting proposals from qualified architectural firms to design a dock expansion. The deadline to submit proposals is Thursday. Three finalists are expected to be… Continue reading →

Agents offer Obamcare enrollment help

Members of the Health Agents for America will be offering consumers help enrolling in health coverage under the Affordable Care Act from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday to Friday at Baton Rouge General’s Mid City and Bluebonnet campuses until April 30. The special enrollment period covers people who didn’t know about or understand the federal tax… Continue reading →

Wingstop opens Central location

Wingstop, a chain that specializes in chicken wings tossed in a variety of different sauces, has opened its latest restaurant at 14455 Wax Road in Central. This is the fifth Wingstop in metro Baton Rouge, joining locations on Sherwood Forest Boulevard, Bluebonnet Boulevard, Gonzales and Zachary. Along with the wings, Wingstop… Continue reading →

NOLA Brewing founder planning vodka, gin, whiskey distillery

Associated Press file photo -- Kirk Coco, founder and president of NOLA Brewing Co.

The president and founder of microbrewery NOLA Brewing Co. plans to launch a craft distillery this year, initially making vodka, gin and white whiskey. The distillery has been incorporated as New Orleans Libations and Alcohol Distilling Co. LLC. NOLA Distilling will begin operations as soon as permitting has been finalized, which could be as early as… Continue reading →

Louisiana stocks battered by low oil prices

The Pelican State Portfolio, a group of Louisiana stocks tracked by The Advocate, continued to be outperformed by the stock market during the first three months of 2015, as low crude oil prices continued to take a toll on businesses in the energy industry. The 24 stocks in the Pelican State Portfolio — all public companies based… Continue reading →

Business Honors for April 12, 2015

Bob Jacobs, YMCA of the Capital Area

Bob Jacobs, president and chief executive officer of YMCA of the Capital Area, was presented the John W. Barton Sr. Excellence in Non-Profit Management Award during the Baton Rouge Area Foundation’s annual meeting. Patty McMurray, a partner at Adams and Reese, received the D. Jensen Holliday Award… Continue reading →

People in Business for April 12, 2015

Jennie Stelly, Lane Regional Medical Center

Jennie Stelly has been named pharmacy director at Lane Regional Medical Center. She replaces Johnny Johnson, who retired in March. Stelly was a staff pharmacist. Cassy Brou, principal of Cohn Elementary School in West Baton Rouge Parish, has been appointed to the Louisiana D.A.R.E. Advisory Board by Gov. Bobby Jindal.… Continue reading →

Business Briefs for April 12, 2015

Lakeview Regional Medical Center has expanded its emergency department services to include 24-hour trauma coverage, including trauma surgery. Dr. Marco Hidalgo has joined the staff at Lakeview as medical director of trauma, overseeing the treatment of trauma cases involving motor vehicle accidents, sports injuries, falls and other life-threatening injuries… Continue reading →

Women business leaders to discuss success at event

A panel discussion with top female business leaders sharing their stories of success will be featured during a “Cocktails & Conversations” for women event for greater Baton Rouge. The free event will take place from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. April 16 at L’Auberge Baton Rouge at 777 L’Auberge Ave. It is being held… Continue reading →

Pitch competition targeted at healthier New Orleans

Ten semifinalists will compete for $10,000 in funding by pitching solutions to get New Orleanians healthier, more active and better nourished. The PitchNOLA: Living Well competition will be held from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday, April 21, at the Propeller: A Force for Social Innovation business incubator at 4035 Washington Ave. in New Orleans.… Continue reading →

Microlender LiftFund gets $1 million from HUD

Nonprofit microlender LiftFund has an extra $1 million for qualified small businesses in Louisiana and five other states, courtesy of the federal government. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development earmarked the $1 million for LiftFund customers in Louisiana, Arkansas, Mississippi, Tennessee, Missouri and Alabama. Since 2009, LiftFund has granted over 950 loans totaling a combined… Continue reading →

Hampton Inn on Reiger sold for $9.65 million

The Hampton Inn & Suites at 11271 Reiger Road has been sold for $9.65 million. According to documents filed with the East Baton Rouge Clerk of Court’s office Thursday, Baton Rouge HPA LLC, a group out of Sugar Land, Texas, bought the hotel from South Baton Rouge Hotel LLC, who developed the property. South Baton Rouge is… Continue reading →

Corporate growth group announces awards

ACG Louisiana, a state chapter of the Association for Corporate Growth, named six winners of awards that recognize growth companies, business professionals and noteworthy corporate transactions in Louisiana. Five are in New Orleans and one in Baton Rouge. They are Albemarle Corp. in Baton Rouge, deal of the year, and from New Orleans, Reily Foods Co., outstanding… Continue reading →

National (legal) Marijuana Day hits

“Ganjapreneurs,” and other enthusiasts, will celebrate National Marijuana Day on April 20, but any festivities in Louisiana will be highly unofficial. Medical marijuana sales are legal in 23 states and Washington, D.C., and four states have made recreational sales legal. Louisiana is not one of them, although support for the idea is growing. A recent LSU… Continue reading →

LSU lectures focus on coastal restoration, storm protection

One of the world’s most-cited environmental economists will discuss coastal habitat restoration and storm protection April 13-14 at LSU’s Energy, Coast & Environment building. Edward B. Barbier, the John S. Bugas Professor of Economics at the University of Wyoming will deliver two lectures. “Living on the Edge: Protecting & Restoring Coastal Habitats” is set for 7… Continue reading →

It’s cheaper to rent in Ascension

Ascension Parish was the seventh-most affordable place to rent a house in the country during the first quarter of 2015, according to housing data firm RealtyTrac. In Ascension, the monthly rent on a three-bedroom home represented about 17 percent of the estimated median income in 2015, according to the report. Meanwhile, the monthly house note amounted to… Continue reading →

Young Entrepreneur Expo planned by CPA group

A free expo designed to inspire children ages 7 to 14 to become entrepreneurs will be held from 3 p.m. until 6 p.m. Sunday at the East Baton Rouge Library at 7711 Goodwood Blvd. The Young Entrepreneur Expo is being held by the Society of Louisiana CPA’s. There will be a “Starting Your Own Business” session… Continue reading →

Pan-American Life Insurance in New Orleans acquiring Mutual Trust in Illinois

Pan-American Life Insurance Group in New Orleans and Mutual Trust Financial Group in Oak Brook, Illinois, plan to merge their mutual insurance holding companies. Mutual Trust will operate as a subsidiary of Pan-American Life. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. The combined organization will have its global headquarters in New Orleans and will be led by… Continue reading →