Valero, Love Bugs, Fontana, Mollere are top honorees at annual Chamber banquet

Published 12:00 am Thursday, January 31, 2008

LULING — The River Region Chamber of Commerce annual banquet and officer installation was held The River Room, formerly Dougie V’s Esperanza, with a huge success despite the rainy weather.

With over 180 in attendance came a lot of laughter, good food, and a true spirit of camaraderie as the members spent their dinner time enjoying the guest speakers and wonderful entertainment.

Outgoing 2007 Chairman Blaise Gravois gave his parting remarks, then introduced incoming 2008 Chairman Chesley Cashio.

Top honors on the night went to Valero as the “Large Business of the Year,” while Love Bugs was named the “Small Business of the Year.”

Gregory Mollere of AM/PM Staffing received the Community Leadership award, while Frank Fontana, manager of Office Depot in LaPlace, received the prestigious “Shining Star” award as a Chamber member who went above and beyond the call of duty to help during the past year.

Gravois also presented two special awards: Committee of the Year – Membership and Board member of the year went to Chesley Cashio.

Keynote speaker was Loren C. Scott of Loren C. Scott and Associates, who brought humor to a serious subject of what our future looks like after the wake of Katrina to the parishes and the surrounding areas. He gave a lot of hope that we will not only thrive in this community but we will continue to grow since a lot of the population has migrated here from the metro New Orleans Area.