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Meet the Candidates

EDITOR’S NOTE: L’OBSERVATEUR reached out to candidates running for office in St. John the Baptist Parish in non-statewide elections. The answers each candidate submitted are included in this section. Candidates were asked to keep individual answers to 75 words. Some answers were edited to cut down length and correct grammatical errors.

Information is not provided for Parish Council District 1 (Kurt Becnel) or Parish Council District 7 (Tom Malik) because there were no challengers for those seats. Therefore, Becnel and Malik will retain their positions for the next term.

Please be aware that the Parish Council District election that appears on your ballot will be relative to your precinct. To locate your precinct, please visit the Louisiana Secretary of State’s website at sos.la.gov.

For Parish-wide races, photos are combined together in a collage after all the candidates for each race are listed. For District Council seats, the picture of each candidate will appear after the candidate listing.

 

St. John the Baptist Parish President

JACLYN HOTARD

Town of Residence: LaPlace

Date of Birth: 11/16/77

Married/Children/Family: Married – together we have three children and one dog, Charlie

Political Affiliation: Democrat

Profession: Small Business Owner

What does St. John Parish mean to you?

I love St. John Parish. I was born and raised here, and I’ve dedicated much of my adult life to serving the people of St. John. I am very grateful for this opportunity the residents have given me. I also deeply care about our parish’s future, and I believe together we can move our Parish forward in the right direction.

How can our parish improve?

Our Parish can improve by capitalizing on our two greatest assets: our great people and our prime location. We are perfectly situated between New Orleans and Baton Rouge, and we have access to interstate, highway, air and river. By collaborating with our regional partners, we can stimulate economic growth, which will in turn allow us to enhance our quality of life by investing in infrastructure, recreation, water improvements and create more good paying jobs.

What makes you an effective leader?

Having compassion for people makes me an effective leader. During Hurricane Isaac, I was in floodwater rescuing residents, and I spent countless hours assisting residents in need. Leaders don’t talk – they act. My leadership skills have been sharpened over my 16 years of public service. I excel in my ability to listen to competing opinions and focus parties on a clear mission to gain positive results for our community.

Setting clear goals and objectives will be essential to successful leadership and moving our Parish forward, and I’ve demonstrated my ability to do that time and time again.

CHARLES C. JULIEN

Town of Residence:Reserve, LA “Cornland”

Date of Birth:January 3, 1963 “Capricorn”

Married/Children/Family:Married to Latoya K. Farlough, 5 children: Chamon, Lucas, Domonique, “Von” and Chari

Political Affiliation:Democrat

Profession:English Teacher at East St. John High (St. John the Baptist Parish Schools)

What does St. John Parish mean to you?

Cornland is where Charley Julien aka “Jimmy Jules” and Rita Mae Linton Julien grew up. It’s where I, along with my 3 brothers and 2 sisters, call home. This undeveloped area of Reserve is where the Juliens come from. Students from Cornland would walk to Rosenwald, which was the school for black students. Everyone attended church: My father attended Zion Travelers Baptist Church and my mother attended Pilgrim Baptist Church. Presently, my children attend Beechgrove Baptist Church. My goal is to influence our community, our children, grandchildren and great grandchildren to be law-abiding citizens, to love the Lord and to love their community, because St. John the Baptist Parish means everything to #72.

How can our parish improve?

Our parish can improve if we focus on the “3 Es” or quality of life issues: environment, education and economics. #72 wants to improve our parish by ensuring the plants are good neighbors. They have to hire more local people and control whatever carcinogens are being released in our community. #72 wants to make sure our educational system is provided more resources and support so that children are given their best chance to perform at their optimum. Next, our parish can improve if we support our small businesses. We must train young people, hire local and promote from within. Then we can recycle our tax dollars and reinvest in our community.

What makes you an effective leader?

#72 is an effective leader because he has the temperament to deal with different personalities. He exhibits characteristics of a leader, such as: commitment, integrity and dedication. Senator Corey Booker said, “Your silence is complicit.” He meant that if you say nothing or do nothing-you are going along with your mistreatment!!!#72 will be an effective leader because he will not be silent-he will remain committed and fight you us.Please vote #72, Charles Julien for Parish President.

TERRY LEWIS SR.

Town of Residence: Garyville/ Mt Airy

Date of Birth: not provided

Married/Children/Family: Married to Lynn W. Lewis for 39 years. We have four children and one deceased daughter. Two of our daughters are educators in St. John Parish. We have seven grandchildren whose favorite vacation place is Disney World in Orlando, Florida.

Political Affiliation: Conservative Democrat

Profession: Small business man, consultant and Pastor

What does St. John Parish mean to you? St. John to me is living in an environment where everyone has the liberty to live a wholesome life, with clean water, clean air and gainful employment. It has been a great place to raise our kids. Now I want it to be an even greater place to raise our grandkids.

How can our parish improve? Our parish can improve when we stop electing politicians who get in office only to start campaigning for their next political office. Let us elect someone like myself who really wants to do the job. I am willing to give half of my salary back to the community to prove I’m serious. We need people with integrity and a compassionate heart.

What makes you an effective leader? I have been the pastor of Providence Baptist Church for 27 years. I have the ability to unite people. People are willing to follow me because I never ask them to do anything I don’t do first, and that’s the first quality of a good leader. I have a spirit that people trust, and I have never let them down. I have led my family and household for the past 40 years. They would tell you I did a great job, but my work is not done. I was called to Preach, but my assignment is to be the next Parish President. TO GOD BE THE GLORY!

RODNEY NICHOLAS

Town of Residence: LaPlace

Date of Birth: 10/15/1960

Married/Children/Family: Married to Tressa Nicholas for 28 years. We have 4 children

Political Affiliation: Democratic

Profession: Served as St. John Chief Deputy Assessor for the past 3 years (No longer with the office effective 09/15/2019), also an Ordained Minister

What does St. John Parish mean to you?

When people ask where I’m from, I say, “St. John Parish, the top of the world.” St. John is my home, and it means everything to me. I envision St. John as a growing, thriving community, with great jobs and next-level economic opportunities, youth development opportunities for our children, great schools, great public and private partnerships, working together the faith-based communities. I envision St. John as a safe place to work and play, a place we can all be proud of, and a place we are glad to call home.

How can our parish improve? The parish will improve by completing the West Shore Levee. This will stimulate economic development, lower flood insurance premiums, increase property values and increase equity for residents. We must recruit & engage local contractors for capital projects and provide job opportunities for residents. The parish must develop a new water distribution system with the Mississippi River as its source, protected by the West Shore Levee. There is a need to redo the permitting process. Also, government has a responsibility to protect its residents from harmful emissions by ensuring industry are responsible neighbors. Finally, the parish can improve when elected officials, community leaders, government entities, the faith-based community and the business community come together.

What makes you an effective leader?

The qualities that make me the most effective leader are integrity, a vision for the future and passion for the people I am called to lead. The most important issues in this Parish President’s race are leadership, integrity and trust. Leadership is ultimately about influence. I am the only candidate who has an economic development vision for the future our parish that includes both short-term and long-term goals. I also must have the education and skill-set necessary to match the vision so that it can become a real-life success story for our parish and our children.

RANDY S. VINCENT

Town of Residence: LaPlace

Date of Birth: June 6, 1959

Married/Children/Family: Married for 37 years to my childhood sweetheart Bernadette N. Vincent. We have two daughters. Brandy A. Vincent is a scientist with a background in chemistry, biology and physics. Our youngest daughter, Robyn Michelle Vincent RN, currently works in administration as a supervisor with United Healthcare at New Orleans.

Political Affiliation: Democrat (Conservative)

Profession: Business Consultant – Healthcare, Oil & Gas, Construction, Recycling and Emergency Drinking Water.

What does St. John Parish mean to you?

We have been fortunate over the years to live in multiple states, so we know a good community when we find one. This Parish reminded us of Calcasieu Parish, our birthplace. During our first visit, we immediately connected with the friendly people of LaPlace and the West Bank. We found the food to be excellent, the hospitality warm, familiar church worship services and awesome opportunities to serve others. Once we made the decision to buy a home, St. John Parish is the place we chose to call home.

How can our parish improve?

We need to focus on completing projects currently underway. The Mississippi River as an alternate water source is critical. It will serve us well to expand existing water plants, create a maintenance program and renovate/replace units where needed (EMRR). It will benefit citizens to stabilize the Ruddock Well as a backup water source once the levee is built. Our sewer system needs the same consideration (EMRR). The 20-year plan to should also include drainage, streets, recreation facilities and structural assets. My 20-year plan will link EMRR to our finance, budget and bonding projections. We can improve Business development with innovative green energy technology. We can improve new business start-up/registration processes. Also, we can create opportunities to assist our citizens in need and develop programs to help children and seniors.

What makes you an effective leader?

An effective leader is one who learns to follow the leaders they encounter throughout life.Also, an effective leader is one who seeks mentors, demonstrates the ability to listen first, values the opinions of others, yearns for wisdom and habitually puts others first.

Parish President candidates above, alphabetically from left, Hotard, Julien, and Lewis

Parish President candidates continued above, alphabetically from left, Nicholas and Vincent

 


 

St. John the Baptist Parish Sheriff

CLARENCE GRAY, JR.

Town of Residence: LaPlace

Date of Birth: July 18, 1963

Married/Children/Family: Married to Lisa Hayes Gray of Garyville for 23 years; We have 3 sons (Jamarlon, Kenneth, and Kyron) and five grandchildren.

Political Affiliation: Democrat

Profession: Retired, 30 year Law Enforcement career – Major, Executive Assistant to the Sheriff, St. John the Baptist Sheriff’s Office.

What does St. John Parish mean to you? As a lifelong resident of St. John Parish, I’ve always loved and cared for my community. When I left for college in Mississippi, I took the values and teachings of this community to help me obtain my Bachelor of Science degree in education and become a leader and star athlete on my college basketball team. Upon my return home, I immediately sought the opportunity to give back to my community by becoming a high school teacher and then a public servant.

How can our parish improve? As a growing community, we should always seek ways to improve our community in areas like Quality of Life, Economic Growth, and always seek to improve our public safety at home, work, and school.

For our community to improve, I feel it is going to take a total community effort and commitment of everyone coming together for the betterment of St. John the Baptist Parish.

What makes you an effective leader? What makes me an effective leader is my compassion and empathy for people. What makes me an effective public servant leader is that I am always professional and I have always served the public with integrity and fairness.

MICHAEL KERRY TREGRE (INCUMBENT)

Town of Residence: LaPlace

Date of Birth: 07/15/1966

Married/Children/Family: Married, with two children, Jasmine and Jared

Political Affiliation: Democrat

Profession: Sheriff of St. John Parish

What does St. John Parish mean to you? I was born and raised on East 29th St. in Reserve. I remember when playing on the levee was a big deal because that meant we were old enough to cross River Road. I treasure the days when after school everyone from 26th Street to 30th Street would meet on the vacant lot to play football or climb the bleachers behind Fifth Ward School. To me, St. John Parish is simply “home”. I have dedicated my life to one career in one place.

How can our parish improve? Our parish has come a long way. Technology has made many things better but some things worse. The fact that we can use crime cameras to make arrests within 48 hours tells us we have upgraded our ability to bring justice to victims. The infrastructure improvements and the start of the levee protection system will stimulate growth. I think it’s important to elect leaders that positively represent St. John not only to our citizens but region wide, statewide, and throughout the country.

What makes you an effective leader?I lead by example. I have 31 years of law enforcement experience, and I will not sit in the office while major cases are being investigated. I have not hesitated to direct traffic, assist detectives on crime scenes, back up patrolmen on traffic a stop, or walk neighborhoods looking for witnesses. When my officers present a problem, I make them a part of coming up with the solution. That’s how I help them become better officers and build future leaders. I attend many advanced training seminars with my officers so that I can stay up to date on modern technology and changing laws as well.

JUAN SHUG WATKINS

Town of Residence: I am a life long resident of LaPlace, LA.

Date of Birth: I was born on August 8, 1966.

Married/Children/Family: I have been married to Penny Davis Watkins for the past 25 years. We have (2) beautiful kids, Jeneh Watkins Love and Juan Watkins Jr.We also have (2) beautiful grandchildren, Reign and Charm Love.

Political Affiliation: I am a Democrat.

Profession: I am a 30-year Veteran of the St. John Parish Sheriff Office (recently retired May of 2019).

What does St. John Parish mean to you?

St. John Parish means everything to me. It’s where I was born, raised, and put 30 years of my life on the line for the people I love. I grew up watching three generations of greatness and public service. My grandmother Emily C. Watkins served as an educator for 50+ years. My father Charles (CJ) Watkins was an educator who mentored so many young men. My father spent 29 years as a St. John school board member (Vice President) and Juvenile Probation officer. My oldest brother Orlando Watkins Sr. gave 30+ years as a teacher and a principal in SJP. My mother, Blanche Brown Watkins, served 30+ years in management of several successful food stores. My middle brother, Nathaniel Watkins, has been employed by Winn Dixie for 28 years. I am following in the footsteps of greatness because that’s what I SAW and KNOW.

How can our parish improve?

I will always have an open door policy in order for our parish to improve. We the Sheriff Department along with the community will see reduction in crimes. You will see programs for our youth and seniors, and you will see police officers working and patrolling like they have never done before. I can bring the District Attorney, Parish President, and the Superintendent of Schools together so that we can be on one accord to serve this parish effectively.

What makes you an effective leader?

I am passionate, committed, dedicated and loyal. I am someone who actually listens and advocates on behalf of the community through engagement, analyzing and putting the desires and needs of the community before my own wholeheartedly. I want the citizens to know I am a people’s person and I am approachable to everyone. I want to treat all the people in this parish EQUALLY, FAIRLY, and RESPECTFULLY. I am educated, dedicated, committed, and qualified to be your TOP COP (SHERIFF)! I am asking the people of this parish to give me and allow me one term as your Sheriff and I won’t let us (SJP) down.

Sheriff candidates above, alphabetically from left, Gray, Tregre and Watkins

 


 

St. John the Baptist Parish Clerk of Court

ELIANA OLIVIER DEFRANCESCH (INCUMBENT)

Town of Residence: Garyville/Mt. Airy

Date of Birth: 7-3-1948

Married/Children/Family: Married for 49 years to Attorney Fred DeFrancesch, proud mother of three amazing children and five exceptional grandchildren

Political Affiliation: Democrat

Profession: St. John Clerk of Court, former schoolteacher. I taught in the St. John school system for 10 years and served as Justice of the Peace for district 4. I have also been a businesswoman and helped run the Garyville General Store with my husband. I have also assisted my husband in his law practice. I am a graduate of LSU.

What does St. John Parish mean to you?Everything. Even though I did not grow up here, the parish accepted me as one of its own. I have been a resident for over 40 years. I have come to love and respect the people of this parish. It is my home and my family’s home. I ran for this position to give back to the people of this wonderful parish. I wanted to bring the Clerk’s office into the 21 Century, and I have. The public can come view their family history, their property records, receive marriage licenses and passports, and file all civil and criminal documents. I will continue to serve the public with respect.

How can our parish improve? We all need to work together and be more inclusive with each government entity and the public. Have public forums and listen to public opinion.

What makes you an effective leader? I have the education and knowledge to implement the needs of this office and the ambition and stamina to do so. I’ve worked with all the government entities of the parish to provide services to the public and will continue to do so to better this office. An effective leader needs to listen and have patience to deal with the challenges and all situations and personnel that arise on a daily basis. I’ve been blessed with those traits. I treat everyone with respect and attempt to be as fair and impartial with my decisions that affect my office and my life.

PEGGY MILLET-JOSEPH

Town of Residence:LaPlace, LA

Date of Birth: May 28, 1956

Married/Children/Family: Married to Aaron Joseph, Sr. we have 7 children:Aaron Jr., Niya, Anthony, Bernard, Brent, Angela, and Ashton.We have 15 Grandchildren including my late granddaughter, Jayla Nicole Tassin.My parents are Geraldine Millet and the late Claude “Pepper” Millet.I’m the oldest of 12 siblings.

Political Affiliation:Democratic Party

Profession: Legislative Assistant

What does St. John Parish mean to you?

St. John Parish means everything to me.I am a lifelong resident of this parish. I want the best for our parish. I want St. John to be a model parish whereas other parishes look to us for advice and how we operate. I love St. John the Baptist Parish, and for that reason I don’t talk about and look down on our parish in a negative way.I want to be a part of the solution, not the problem.If it’s broke, fix it. When it’s fixed, embrace it. We are St. John, and I’m proud to be here.

How can our parish improve?

We need more economic development, more recreation, and good leaders who truly love their parish and will go the distance to make it better. I’m a willing participant.

What makes you an effective leader?

I’m an effective leader because I don’t stop until the work is completed.Good leaders are the ones who will stick their neck out and go beyond to get the job done.I’m a team player who works along with the team to get it done.I’m head of many organizations and they all have strived under my leadership.What also makes me an effective leader is that I’m a leader, not a dictator. “WE” get the job done.

Clerk of COurt candidates above, DeFrancesch, left and Millet-Joseph, right

 


 

Parish Council At-Large Division A

LENNIX W. MADERE JR.

Town of Residence: Reserve

Date of Birth: 7/25/1951

Married: Lisa E. Madere

Children: Jauntra Edwards, Nia Chantel Sims, and Brittany Madere

Political Affiliation: Democrat

Profession: Retired Teacher/ Coach

What does St. John mean to you?

It means home. A place where I was born and raised – a place where I felt comfortable raising my family. A place where I made a living as a public servant. A place that I would never think about leaving.

How can our parish improve?

We can improve by helping the number one resource in this parish, the youth. We need to improve recreation for the young and old individuals. We can improve drainage throughout the parish and levee protection. We can improve the safety of our community by working alongside our sheriff department.

What makes you an effective leader?

My hard work, dedication and my relentless pursuit and effort. Listening to concerns of the voters and helping to solve problems.

LARRY ELMORE SORAPURU, JR. (INCUMBENT)

Town of Residence: Edgard

Date of Birth: 03-26-56

Married/Children/Family: Divorced/5 children

Political Affiliation: Democrat

Profession: Retired/Entrepreneur

What does St. John Parish mean to you?

Family. A place where anyone can call home and everyone is welcome.

How can our parish improve?

Our parish can improve by investing in new technology, access to quality healthcare, sustainable housing, and effective and honest leaders who care about people because the future generations demand it. The future will look very different than today, so it critical that we invest right now and focus on solving the socio-economic challenges in our parish.

What makes you an effective leader?

I am only as effective as the people around me, and that is why I always seek those who complement my skills rather than supplement my skills. When I am able to do this, I become an effective “listener, learner, and helper” to others.

Council At-Large Seat A candidates above from left, Madere and Sorapuru

 


 

Parish Council At-Large Division B

MARVIN J. PERRILLOUX JR. (BUTCH)

Town of Residence: LaPlace

Date of Birth: May 6, 1958

Married/Children/Family: Married, 5 Children, 3 Grandchildren

Political Affiliation: Democrat

Profession: Production Shift Supervisor

What does St. John Parish mean to you?

Say what you want about growing up in St. John the Baptist Parish, but I for one am proud of St. John Parish that I still call home. It’s a medium-size Parish nestled between New Orleans and Baton Rouge that sits along the Mississippi River. It’s a place where I reared and schooled my children, who are still residents. That’s why I ran for public office to help in improving St. John Parish — to make it a family oriented place to live.

How can our parish improve?

The West Shore Levee Project is coming, and we must prepare. We need to improve our internal drainage. This means cleaning our interior canals from River Forest areas to Garyville at Hope Canal and installing pumps to improve drainage. Petition KC and Illinois Central Railroad to clean culverts and ditches along the track, to drain water from River road to our artery canals. Next, clean all neighborhood ditches on both sides of the river. Renovate waste facilities and close the ones we do not need. Improving recreation is a must. Some ideas are retrofitting our community center to accommodate recreation activities, volleyball, home and garden shows, car shows and conventions. Have after-school activities for our children by working with the school system on pooling resources. Make government more efficient through community involvement, town halls, business and industry involvement.

What makes you an effective leader? I have a passion for people. I am confident and a good communicator, willing to help any and all people. This is what you need in a public servant. Take my hand and let’s walk together in improving St. John the Baptist Parish. VOTE # 78 Perrilloux Council at Large, Division B – A voice for all the people.

LARRY M. SNYDER, SR.

Town of Residence: I live in LaPlace, La.

Date of Birth: At birth, in January of 1947, my family lived in Reserve, La. where I was reared.

Married/Children/Family: I’m married to Audrey Taylor-Snyder and we have 12 adult children.

Political Affiliation: I’m a Registered Democrat, since 1966.

Profession: Graduated from Fifth Ward High School and Southern University-Baton Rouge Campus, with B.S. Degree and Certification in Secondary Education. Took extension courses from Santa Clara and Nicholls State Universities. Was an educator for 12 years, retired from Union Carbide Corporation/DOW Chemical after 28 years of service.

What does St. John Parish mean to you? St. John is home for me and many more, and we should do what’s necessary to sustain it as our home. Keeping it safe, environmentally clean and always exploring opportunities to improve the quality of life for its citizens. Our parish is strategically located between two major cities. That alone puts us in position for growth and prosperity. We now must have the right leadership to envision St. John, 10, 15 or 20 years in the future.

How can our parish improve? We’ve made many improvements to our land use strategy the last eight years. The levee protection is a done deal…that project has started; Within a year we will have our new water meter system up and running; We’ve passed legislative measures to fund community drainage improvements. I think always putting ‘People Before Politics’ so they trust you will do what is right for them is one-third of effective leadership; Strategic Planning is one-third; and financing is the last third.

What makes you an effective leader? District 6 residents know I’m dependable. When they call me, most of the time I’ll answer. If I don’t, I will call back…that’s because I’m retired and available anytime of the day. In eight years, I haven’t missed one meeting. You elected me to represent you and I’ve represented you at every meeting.

MICHAEL P. WRIGHT

Town of Residence: LaPlace

Date of Birth: April 29

Married/Children/Family: Married to Erica Wright with our dog Blair.

Political Affiliation: No Party

Profession: Senior Manager in Healthcare Industry

What does St. John Parish mean to you?

St. John is an economic driver for our nation’s economy. We house some of the nation’s largest industrial partners, including the largest tonnage port district in the western hemisphere. We are the I-10 connector from New Orleans to Baton Rouge and the entrance to I-55. St. John Parish is home – my wife and I are planning to raise a family here. I have a vested interest in the future of our community.

How can our parish improve?

Our water system needs to be relocated – it is not inside the future Hurricane Protection Levee. Our drainage arteries need to be cleared so we can send water over the levee. We need to enhance our economic development initiatives to attract more industry to St. John. We also need to provide more recreational opportunities for our youth.

What makes you an effective leader?

I’ve served as Council Chairman, Vice Chairman, and represented St. John on the Regional Planning Commission. I’ve built strong relationships with local, state, and federal officials and lobbied DC for our Hurricane Protection Levee. I’ve been a strong advocate for St. John and a voice for the residents of District 5. I understand the needs of our community and would be honored to continue to represent St. John.

Council At-Large Seat B candidates, alphabetically above from left, Perrilloux, Snyder and Wright

 


 

Parish Council District 2

JULIA REMONDET (INCUMBENT)

Town of Residence: Reserve

Date of Birth: 67yrs old

Political Affiliation: Democrat

Profession: Retired Economic Development Director 23yrs, St. John Parish

Council District 2 Incumbent

What does St. John Parish mean to you?

I was born and raised in Lions, St. John Parish. The Parish represents my home.My past and where my family and I will live in the future.The growth, development and revitalization of the Parish are our future especially, in District 2.It’s in this district, where most of the past growth of the Parish took place.We need to honor that past and strive to encourage future growth to make our Parish more viable.

How can our parish improve?

The levee is a necessity. However, we need to develop a drainage system to get the rain water out thru our levee system. This is vital.We’ve recently requested funds planned for a Drainage Department in 2020.District 2 has some of the lowest areas in St. John Parish and we need to dredge the permitted canals and begin the drainage culvert update program approved recently.Update and replacing our and sewer system is also crucial.

What makes you an effective leader?

You need to know the overall workings of or government, and how we coordinate and work with regional and state entities; and where we fit in the “Big “Picture”, and do our part as a councilmember.Knowing the ins and outs is vital for a council member.

Julia Remondet

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WARREN “BOSCO” TORRES, JR.

Town of Residence: Garyville

Date of Birth: June 27, 1955

Married/Children/Family: Married to Debra Minor Torres for 45 years.Three daughters: Melissa, Jenny and Sherrie.All who reside in St. John Parish.

Political Affiliation: Democrat

Profession: Employed by Marathon Petroleum for the past 29 years, currently serving as the Maintenance Coordinator in the wastewater treatment area.Previously by Boyce Machinery as a diesel mechanic and new and used equipment coordinator.

What does St. John Parish mean to you?

It is the place where I was born, raised and cherish.

How can our parish improve?

Our parish can improve with strong leadership and 4 years of committed local directors.

What makes you an effective leader?

I have a very strong work ethic.My over 40 years of valuable work experience have helped me to lead others in solving both simple and complex work problems and making changes during the process.We cannot solve our problems in St. John with the same thinking we used when the problems were first created.

 

Warren “Bosco” Torres Jr.

 


 

Parish Council District 3

TAMMY Y. HOUSTON

Town of Residence: Native of Reserve, Louisiana

Date of Birth: June 25, 1963

Married/Children/Family: Daughter Villere (Billy) and Cynthia Houston who were long-time educators in St. John the Baptist Parish.

Political Affiliation: Democrat (1981)

Profession: I retired from the St. John the Baptist Parish Public Library system in 2017.I began my tenure with the system, in 1988, as the supervisor of the system’s Reserve branch.After obtaining my Master’s degree in Public Administration, I was promoted to Administrative Services Coordinator in 2006 and my duties included human resources responsibilities.I was appointed assistant director in 2016 and served in that capacity until I retired in September 2017.

What does St. John Parish mean to you?

St. John Parish is my home and, as such, the core of my life.As a Reserve native, the love of my community was instilled at an early age.After graduating from East St. John, I relocated to New Orleans where I earned a bachelor’s degree in communications. As I contemplated my next course, I came back to the place, in which, I felt safe.I came home because of my genuine love for Reserve.

How can our parish improve?

When I am elected, I have drafted a visual blueprint that includes implementing a water maintenance department to alleviate the various water issues, seek partnerships with industry to improve, upgrade our existing parks, to ensure fairness in the competitive bidding process, holding contractors accountable in providing the materials, services and products that they are contractually obligated, validate EPA compliance for clean air quality.I will be visible, accessible and proactive concerning needs of the constituents.

What makes you an effective leader?

Effective leaders lead by example.As a public administrator, in a public entity, I led by example, holding individuals, including myself, accountable. My persistent nature and determination for fairness have enable me to have achieved successful leadership with the library and as a 12 year member of the parish’s civil service board with the last years elected as the board’s chairperson. Leaders have visions and I definitely have a vision for improvement in our parish.

 

Tammy Houston

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DAVID SANDERS

Town of Residence: Reserve

Date of Birth: 5-11-57

Married/Children/Family: Married with 3 children

Political Affiliation: Democrat

Profession: I’m a retired contractor, and I also worked as a power plant operator for Entergy.

What does St. John Parish mean to you?

I’ve been a resident of St. John Parish for 62 years at this same address. I’ve lived in this District for 62 years, along with my siblings. I have four siblings that are alive, and they still reside in St. John Parish District 3.

How can our parish improve?

By putting stricter regulations on industry with the air control quality. Right now, we are fighting a big uphill battle with Denka/DuPont.

What makes you an effective leader?

I have never been in politics before, but I have worked around contractors. I always did stand out to be the one that when situations came up would make sure it’s resolved. I never walked away from anything. As far as politics, I’m not a politician. I’m not seeking the office in a political sense. I’m seeking this office because I have genuine concerns about problems in this parish. I live through the frustrations along with my neighbors, and I know I can help them correct these problems. I can show strong leadership in that capacity.

David Sanders


 

Parish Council District 4

FRANK ALEXIS JR.

Town of Residence: LaPlace La.

Date of Birth: June 29, 1954

Married/Children/Family: I’m single. I have two daughters, Amber Lachandra Alexis and Ashley Rochelle Alexis and an inspiring young grandson, Ayden Griffin.

Political Affiliation: I’m a registered Democrat.

Profession: I graduated Southern University, Baton Rouge, La., earning a Bachelor’s of Science degree from the college of Business, majoring in Accounting/Management.

What does St. John Parish mean to you?

I’m native St. John Parish, homegrown. St. John Parish is home. It afforded myself, my parents and great-grandparents that warm, stable, safe and loving environment as a child and young adult. St. John Parish offered stable employment to my father at Godchaux Sugar refinery, enabling him to provide for our family. That quality of life proved to be invaluable, underwriting the cost of my and my six siblings post studies at the university levels, subsequently earning undergraduate degrees. For that, among many other positives of St. John Parish, I am forever indebted.

How can our parish improve?

The improvement of St. John Parish lies flatly on the shoulders of present and future leadership, individuals from all walks of life, unbiased and impartial, with proven and accomplished portfolios of near excellence, whose careers have afforded the interacting and touching, tasting and managing diverse groups and cultures, yet achieving and accomplishing levels of success with accommodations.

What makes you an effective leader?

He’s compassionate, recognizes his strengths as well as weaknesses and employs his wisdom to surround oneself with team players that compliment his strengths and simultaneously undergirds the shortfalls. He leads by example. Honest and forthright, yet considerate and compassionate. He clearly believes in himself. Faithful and truly a visionary, whose conduct and pursuit of purpose become an epidemic to his peers, where all, in oneness of mission pledges, “If we going to reach the peak, we must all get there together.”

Frank Alexis Jr.

 

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TYRA DUHÉ-GRIFFIN

Town of Residence: LaPlace

Date of Birth: May 31, 1981

Married/Children/Family: Married to Jamaal C. Griffin. Children: Taylor, Lauryn, Kade & Kyndal. Mom: Elmira Brown Duhé

Political Affiliation: Democratic

Profession: Educator

What does St. John Parish mean to you?

“Home is where the heart is” And my heart is in St. John the Baptist Parish.I am passionate, committed and am also an educator in St. John Parish School System. St. John has been a huge part in making me who I am today. I love our rich culture and people. Where else can the Saints score a touchdown and we are all yelling we the “WHO DATS!” (LOL) My mother Elmira Brown Duhé was a social worker here for over a decade. She serviced families and was an advocate for children. My Aunt, Shirley Brown Gauff, also was an educator here for over 30 years. She told me at a very young age, “we serve God by serving others.” These two women greatly inspired me to want to serve and do for my community.

How can our parish improve?

On the campaign trail, I’ve heard issues about drainage concerns, emergency response, flood protection, permitting, air quality and more. “Let’s Work Together” – the promise I can make is that every issue will be addressed. I will listen and you will be heard. We do have concerns and some of those I previously mentioned can’t be fixed overnight, but “Let’s Work Together” to be the change we would like see in St. John the Baptist Parish, District 4. I will be your voice!

 

What makes you an effective leader?

I am an effective leader because I have a purpose that is larger than me. I possess the personality, skills and education to put that purpose into action. I believe that when you are elected, you are elected to serve and be a voice for the people you represent. You listen! You do your homework! You follow up! You communicate! You make informed decisions! You do the job you were elected to do! You earn that vote and I want to earn your support. Please vote for me, #86, on Oct.12.

Tyra Duhe’-Griffin

 

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PENNY J. HALL

Town of Residence: LaPlace

Date of Birth: 01/27/1968

Family/Kids/Married: Daughter-in-law of the late pioneer Educator Grady Hall. Wife of Devin Hall, 3 kids 1 deceased. 5 granddaughters and 2 step-grandsons.

Political Affiliation: Independent

Profession: Business and Behavior Health (Ochsner Hospital & Healing Hands)

What does St. John Parish mean to you?St. John Parish means community, family, and tradition. St. John parish is where you can live and raise a family.A place where neighbors look out for each other; where Friday night football create togetherness; where citizens rally together in time of need. St. John parish is a place full of potential to grow economically throughout the entire parish.St. John Parish is a place where positive change provides positive opportunities.

How can our parish improve?Our parish can improve by focusing on safety, youths, family and economical increases.The first improvement is to create programs for children and family to help build positive support for families.Programs designed to help children and family such as tutoring, mentoring, support groups. Develop growth opportunities for local businesses in the community. Promote for an increase in well-known shopping stores, restaurants, and family friendly attractions.

What makes you an effective leader? I am approachable and accountable. I am someone who citizens can voice their concerns to, knowing I will advocate for them. I’m not afraid to challenge rules that are not beneficial for my community. My extensive career has afforded me great problem-solving and analytical skills.My most important attribute as a leader is my ability to listen to the needs of the people. My motto is: Together we are achieving. My vision is: Archiving lasting solutions, while promoting a safe and economic environment.

Penny Hall

 


 

Parish Council District 5

ROBERT “ROBBY” ARCURI

Town of Residence: LaPlace

Date of Birth: 11/23/55

Married/Children/Family: Married to my wife Jenny for 39 years, 2 grown children, 3 grandchildren

Political Affiliation: Republican

Profession: Retired from Shell Oil in 2016

What does St. John mean to me?

I have been a lifelong resident of St. John. I have friends and family here in St. John, and I am not going anywhere. St. John will always be my home.

How can our parish improve?

We need to improve our infrastructure (Water, Sewerage and Drainage), and we need to start now! I would also focus on improving the quality of life in St. John. To keep our young people here, we need to improve our schools, clean up our neighborhoods and thoroughfares and enforce code enforcement violations. The council does not control the school system, but we can work with the school board to give our input and address the problems they face.

What makes you an effective leader?

I worked in leadership roles the last 23 years of my career at Shell. I was a board member for the River Forest Homeowners association for several years and President of that organization for 4 years. During my career at Shell, I worked with many different contractors and employees. Many of the jobs we planned and coordinated were major jobs involving multiple disciplines and costing substantial amounts of money. The pressure was always on to work efficiently and stick to the budget.

Robert Arcuri

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DAMON K. DAVIS

Town of Residence: LaPlace (Montague subdivision)

Date of Birth: Not provided

Marriage/ Children/ Family: Marital Status: Single; Children: Twin Girls, Dalie & Dilyn; Family: Ms. Marva A. James & Darryl Davis Sr.

Political Affiliation: A Democrat Since 1999.

Profession: Small Business Man / Self-employed Barber

What does St. John Parish mean to you?

St. John has a variety of assets here for me: having my business here, purchasing a home here, and raising my kids here. I want to build a “working together” community, working toward the same common goals and helping each other out through hard times.

How can our parish improve?

Neighborhood enhancement projects, such as removing blighted properties, working with residents to remove high grass and other infrastructure matter. More special needs activities for residents who need them and also create more senior citizen activities as well. And also work with our faith-based leaders to continue to serving all of our communities in the parish. Environmental cleaning projects is very vital to me as well in our Parish. Let’s do trash / debris clean sweeps to ensure a better quality of life.

What makes you an effective leader?

I will lead with honesty and integrity. Being very vocal with my constituents is the type of leader I would be. Someone who will do the job of a councilman with passion. A leader that is trusted to make difficult decisions and carry them into actions. A person that will hold government accountable to ensure all of St. John a brighter future.

Damon Davis

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ANASTACIA TAYLOR FRANCIS

Town of Residence: LaPlace

Date of Birth: July 19,1988

Marriage/ Children/ Family: Married to Dwayne Francis. Four children: Starr, Skylarr, Jerrimiah and My’Kel

Political Affiliation: Democrat

Profession: Owner/Operator Little Starrs Center

What Does St. John Mean to me?

St. John is such a beautiful place with its own unique culture and cuisine. It has a strong sense of community and a lot of local pride. This is home for my husband and me, our four children and business. I love that we live in a community filled with a lot of talented, gifted and unique people who share a deep appreciation for our community. We have what it takes to make this a thriving, economically viable, sustainable environment for our families, students and tourists.

How can our parish improve?

I have heard a lot of candidates’ plans and visions. Quite honestly, I believe we all have great ideas. Nonetheless, it is essential elected leaders are willing to listen, come together and collaborate to bring the best ideas to fruition. It’s my goal to maintain open lines of communication with the people of this great community, law enforcement, other elected officials, schools, churches and community organizations in effort to ensure that our parish, District 5 in particular, is a better place for us, as well as our children, who are the next generation.

What makes you an effective leader?

Integrity, passion, service and commitment make me an effective leader. I’m dedicated and committed to what I believe in. As leaders, we cannot sit around and hope for things to happen. We have to work with our community to make it happen.

A great leader is a great listener. I will take heed to the needs of all the constituents. It is their voices, their concerns, and their questions that I will address and actively work on to get solutions. I am approachable and I have the courage to work hard to break down barriers to meet the needs of those who live in District 5.

Anastacia Francis

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MORGAN BRITTANY LEE

Town of Residence: LaPlace, La. District 5 St. John Parish

Date of Birth: April 28,1994

Marriage/Children/Family: 2-year-old Olde English Bulldog “ Pablo”

Political Affiliation: Republican

Profession: Jo Malone ~ Stylist

What does St. John Parish mean to you?

St. John Parish is “Home” to me and there is no place like HOME! It is quite unique to other places I have visited; I have traveled to many cities in OUR great country and I always cannot wait to get HOME. I love the people, good solid salt of the earth folks. I love the Andouille Fest and the food here, and I even competed for the crown when I was a teen.

How can our parish improve?

We need to get people excited about St. John Parish and all of its offerings. We have the Theatre, Restaurants, and the Movies; but I do feel “We” as a parish deserve more recreational options for our community and senior services. I posses the Energy required for these tasks to be completed. We as a parish have infrastructure problems. We have received the funding for the levee protection; it is critical that these projects are monitored. I am able and available to see this project completed.

What makes you an effective leader?

Courage, Passion, Clarity, Committed – these are the skills needed to be an effective leader. I have the ability to work independently and collaborate in a group setting. I have a vision for District 5 and St. John Parish. I am determined and will fight for a better Quality of life for my constituents!

Morgan Lee


 

St. John Parish Council District 6

TONIA SCHNYDER

Town of Residence: LaPlace. Riverlands subdivision

Date of Birth: January 29, 1969

Married/Children/Family: Single/Divorced, 3 children. 2 daughters. 1 son. 2 grand daughters.

Political Affiliation: Democrat

Profession: Process Technician/Shell Refinery; Local Business owner – T&C’s Balloons etc.

What does St. John Parish mean to you?

St. John Parish is the place I call home. I want my parish to be a place everyone that resides here is “proud” to call home. In tough times our parish comes together. I want this to be a routine gesture. I truly wish to bring UNITY in my entire community. That means the most to me.

How can our parish improve?

Our parish leaders need a stronger relationship with its constituents. We need to truly listen to our residents, understand and address their concerns. Our residents need to know they are valued. Show the community you care and they will reciprocate.

What makes you an effective leader?

My ability to listen and communicate with the community at any level. I’m able to approach emergency situations in a calm manner. I do believe working together as a team is more effective in decision making. I truly believe in UNITY IN OUR COMMUNITY and I will work diligently to promote this.

Tonia Schnyder

 

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WARREN SNYDER JR.

Town of Residence: LaPlace

Date of Birth: October 28, 1965

Married/Children/Family: Married to Lahouma Taylor-Snyder,Children: Tyren, Jaden, Warren III, Wuan

Political Affiliation: Democrat

Profession: Truck Driver

What does St. John Parish mean to you?

St. John Parish means ‘home’ and ‘future’ to me.Just like my residence is my home because my family and I makes it so.As a husband, father and head of my household, I love them and am very serious about their well being so that they will have the best future possible. I feel the same way about St. John Parish and look forward to the opportunity to make sure it runs smoothly and is successful in every way.

How can our parish improve?

Our parish can improve by everyone (residents, local government, sheriff’s office, clergy) working together towards the common goal of moving our Parish forward.Enhancing our recreation department will ensure our youth have the opportunity to succeed. Another important area is more jobs in the local plants for residents. There was a time when our fathers, grandfathers, uncle, etc. worked at Godchaux Sugar Refinery. They were able to take care of their families, build homes, own cars, etc. It worked then and can work now.

What makes you an effective leader?

I am an effective leader because I am a goal-oriented person, a man of integrity, passionate about the future of our children and our Parish.As a leader, I believe in the open door policy so I am always available to discuss issues and concerns.With many years of coaching basketball teams, I know the importance of “team” and I envision our Parish, as a team with everyone working together to move us all forward.

Warren Snyder Jr