Chefs Evening 2009 most successful ever
Contact: Rene Abadie
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THANKS, CHEFS EVENING SPONSORS! -- Corporate sponsors for Chefs Evening 2009 were recognized by Southeastern Louisiana University President John L. Crain, right. Pictured are, from left, front row, Stacie Richardson and Ronaldo Hardy of La Capitol Federal Credit Union and Kristin Williams, First Guaranty Bank; back row, Darryl Ferrara and Cindy Shelton, Hancock Bank; Stan Dameron, American Bank and Trust; and Cheryl Brumfield, First Guaranty Bank. Not shown is Eric Gray of Gray Insurance Company, a Gold Sponsor of the event.
This year, the Southeastern Development Foundation’s “dinner party for a good cause” has not only reached a new high in fund-raising record, but is also being hailed by many of its faithful attendees as the best event overall in its 25-year history.
More than 600 people attended Chefs Evening, held earlier this month at a new venue, Southeastern’s Pennington Student Activity Center.
“Many people told us how much they enjoyed the new location, which allowed us to provide a more comfortable venue and more tables to accommodate the crowd,” said Director of Special Development Activities Lynn Horgan, who coordinated the event.
Chefs Evening this year raised more than $50,000 with funds being distributed among the university’s five colleges and Division of Basic Studies to enhance academic endeavors. The Southeastern Development Foundation is also dedicating a portion of the event’s proceeds to help endow a scholarship in memory of the Southeastern students and former student who were killed earlier this month in a tragic accident.
The record amount of funds raised was due, in part, to the addition of several corporate and community sponsors who helped underwrite expenses associated with the event. Gold Sponsors this year were First Guaranty Bank, The Gray Insurance Company and La Capitol Federal Credit Union; Silver Sponsors included American Bank and Trust and Hancock Bank.
Recognized at the Patron Party preceding Chefs Evening were the three individuals most closely associated with launching the event: Duane Shafer, Howard Nichols and Dr. Joe O’Neil, who served as the first chairman in 1984.
“The three of us are immensely gratified that Chefs Evening has stood the test of time,” said O’Neil, who is now with the LSU School of Dentistry’s Department of Orthodontics. “It has flourished in recent years with tremendous support from participating restaurants and the community. I’m confident the university can look forward to another quarter century of success in Chefs Evening.”
Also recognized at the Patron Party were the four area restaurants that have participated in the event over its 25-year history: Don's Seafood, Trey Yuen, and Jacmel of Hammond and Benedict's Plantation in Mandeville.