Monica begins term as St. John president

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, January 12, 2000

ERIK SANZENBACH / L’Observateur / January 12, 2000

EDGARD – Saying a new age has come to St. John the Baptist Parish and”we will not disappoint you,” newly sworn-in Parish President Nickie Monica began his four-year term on a note of optimism as he and the members of the new Parish Council were sworn in Monday afternoon at the Edgard courthouse.

The historic day began at 10 a.m. with a special mass held at St. John theBaptist Church next to the courthouse. Monica and the new council werehonored by the Knights of Columbus Color Guard during the service. Thepriest blessed all participants.

The inauguration was held in a packed courtroom with a standing-room- only crowd. At about five minutes after noon, the Sheriff’s Office ColorGuard marched into the hushed courtroom and presented the national and state flags. After the pledge of allegiance, an a capella rendition of “TheStar Spangled Banner” by Janice Hoover and a spirited invocation by the Rev. Burnell Dent, master-of-ceremonies Judge Thomas F. Daley of theFifth Circuit Court of Appeal introduced retired 40th District Judge Tom Malik, who administered the oath of office to Monica.

Next, 40th District Judge Madeline Jasmine swore in Cleveland Farlough and Duaine Duffy as councilmen-at-large for Divisions A and B, respectively.

This was followed by the swearing in of councilmen Lester Rainey, Allen St.Pierre, Dale Wolfe and Ranny Wilson by 40th District Judge Mary Becnel.Finally, Judge Sterling Snowdy administered the oath of office to Councilmen Job Boucvalt and Steve Lee and Councilwoman Melissa Faucheux.

The wives, husbands and children of the parish officials were sitting in the front row of the courtroom as the oaths were administered.

The new parish president of St. John Parish was introduced by Daley, andMonica gave a short, but upbeat inaugural address.

“We are starting a new era in St. John Parish,” Monica told the crowdedcourtroom, “but I believe that dreams make ordinary people do extraordinary things.”Monica promised that during his tenure as parish president he would improve drainage, build up recreation and tourism and stop wasteful government spending.

To accomplish this, Monica said he will pick administrators who are “strong, courageous and fair leaders.” The audience gave him a thunderous standing ovation.

Daley thanked everybody for coming and announced that the Parish Council would have its first organizational meeting in the meeting room across the lobby in the courthouse. After that, the public was invited to freedrinks and food at a reception held in the Edgard firehouse directly behind the courthouse.

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