The Louisiana Restaurant Association Education Foundation (LRAEF) is pleased to announce its 2013 Board of Directors, which will oversee the goals and mission of the LRAEF.
The LRAEF, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, is the philanthropic arm of the Louisiana Restaurant Association and exists to enhance our community through expanded educational and career opportunities, the formation of strategic partnerships and the elevation of the restaurant industry’s professional standards and practices.
The Board of Directors is also responsible for distributing the LRAEF’s scholarship funds that it gifts annually to students pursuing a culinary education. Since 2011, the LRAEF Scholarship Fund has awarded $80,000.
The new members 2013 LRAEF Board of Directors are:
- Dwight Barnes is the Director of Public Relations at Crescent Crown Distributing in New Orleans. The company has been a member of the LRA more than 10 years and Barnes is a very active member of the Greater New Orleans Chapter.
- Lucien Gunter is CEO of Acme Oyster House, with locations in Louisiana and Florida. The restaurant has been a member since 1987 and its employees, including Gunter, have volunteered countless hours to many LRA chapters, while serving in leadership roles.
- Octavio Mantilla is a co-owner of the establishments within the Besh Restaurant Group, based in New Orleans, the oldest being Restaurant August, which has been an LRA member since it opened in 2001. Mantilla is also a GNO Board member and the chapter’s 2nd Vice President.
- Peter Sclafani is Chef and owner of Ruffino’s Italian Restaurant in Baton Rouge. His restaurant has been an LRA member for three years and in that time, he has been a tireless mentor to ProStart® students in the Baton Rouge area. Sclafani is also a Greater Baton Rouge Chapter Board member and is currently serving as its Vice President.
- Fabian Castillo, Chair- La Casa del Sol, Houma
- Helen LeBourgeois, Vice Chair- TLC Linen Services, New Orleans
- Lenny Raymond, Secretary/Treasurer- Reinhart Foodservice, Harahan
- John Eastman, Past Chair- Auto-Chlor Services, Jefferson
- David Hearn, LRA Chair- Catfish Cabin, Monroe
- Donna Stephenson- ATMOS Energy, Monroe
- Dr. Yvette Green, University of New Orleans (Industry Representative)
The Louisiana ProStart program is grateful to its partners: Diamond- Auto-Chlor Services and the Louisiana Hospitality Foundation; Platinum- Performance Foodservice Caro; and Gold- Louisiana Culinary Institute, Ocean Conservancy and Atmos Energy.