New St. John leadership takes over

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, January 15, 2008


Staff Reporter

EDGARD – A new era of political leadership began in St. John Parish Monday with the swearing in of Parish President Bill Hubbard, along with the nine council members who will work with him on issues facing the parish.

The morning began with the presentation of the colors, by the St. John Sheriff’s Office Honor Guard, the Pledge of Allegiance led by Fifth Circuit Court Judge Tom Daley, and the singing of the National Anthem by LaPlace resident Cindy Grosse.

After a brief welcome by Judge Daley, the nine council members were administered the oath of office three at a time starting with Haston Lewis of District 1, Daniel Millet of District 2,

and Charles Julien of District 3, who were sworn in by Judge Madeline Jasmine. Judge Mary Hotard Becnel administered the oath of office to Jaclyn Hotard of District 4, Darnel Usry of District 5, and Ronnie Smith of District 6, and Judge Sterling Snowdy delivered the oath to Cheryl Millet of District 7, along with Dale Wolfe and Steve Lee, the Councilmen-At-Large for Divisions A and B respectively.

Once the nine council members had accepted the oath, Hubbard was sworn in by Judge Snowdy. Hubbard then briefly addressed the crowd of about 200 in attendance, in which he thanked the citizens of St. John Parish for their continued support and congratulated the incoming council members who will work with him for the next four years.

“The people of St. John have chosen a great group of men and women to represent them,” said Hubbard. “It is a group committed to progress and innovation to build a better future.”

Following the swearing in ceremony, mass was held at St. John the Baptist Catholic Church, with Father John Nhan Tran of St. Joan of Arc Church presiding. Father Tran stressed the need for authentic leadership from the parish’s newly elected officials.

“As you begin your service to St. John Parish, be mindful of our prayers,” said Tran to Hubbard and the council. “You are called to serve, not be served. To lay down your life for the people of the parish whenever necessary.”

The morning’s festivities concluded with a reception at the Westbank community center, followed by the inaugural council meeting. Hubbard’s first day in office ended later in the evening with a gala event at the St. John Community Center in LaPlace.