Have You Heard

“Take me to the Mardi Gras where the people sing and play, where the dancing is elite and there’s music in the street”
Mardi Gras was brought to Louisiana by early French settlers. The first record of the holiday being marked in Louisiana is March 3, 1699, when the French explorers Iberville and Bienville landed in what is now Louisiana, just south of New Orleans. They held a small celebration and dubbed the spot Point du Mardi Gras (the words meaning “fat Tuesday,” a reference to the last day of feasting before the fasting and of Lent begins).
The starting date of festivities in New Orleans is unknown, but an account from 1743 notes that the custom of carnival balls was already established by that date, but not yet parades. Processions and masking in the streets on Mardi Gras Day were sometimes prohibited by law, but were quickly re-established whenever such restrictions were lifted or enforcement waned. In 1833 Bernard Xavier de Marigny de Mandeville, a rich plantation owner, raised money to fund an official Mardi Gras celebration.
On Mardi Gras of 1857 the Mystic Krewe of Comus held its first parade. Comus is the oldest continuously active Mardi Gras organization and started a number of continuing traditions (for example, the use of floats in parades) and is considered the first Carnival krewe in the modern sense.
In 1870, Mardi Gras’ second Krewe, the Twelfth Night Revelers, was formed. This is also the first recorded account of Mardi Gras “throws.”
War, economic, political, and weather conditions sometimes led to cancelation of some or all major parades, especially during the American Civil War and World War II, but celebration of Carnival has always been observed in the city.
Today, many krewes operate under a business structure; some have membership open by invitation and others are community-oriented and open to anyone who pays dues to have a place on a parade float. In contrast, the old-line krewes use the structure of the parades and balls to extend the traditions of the debutante season in their social circles.

Audiology services now available at Lane RMC
Lane Regional Medical Center is pleased to announce that Heather O’Laughlin, Au.D., has opened Lane Audiology Clinic at 6110 Main Street, Suite D, in Zachary. She is licensed by the Louisiana Board of Examiners for Speech Pathologists & Audiologists and is certified in clinical competence by the American Speech & Hearing Association.
Originally from Baton Rouge, Dr. O’Laughlin graduated from Louisiana Tech University with a Master’s degree in Audiology and later earned her Doctorate at Arizona School of Health Sciences. Prior to this position she was a diagnostic audiologist at the Clinic of Ear, Nose & Throat Diseases in Baton Rouge.
Dr. O’Laughlin performs hearing evaluations for patients of all ages, as well as: Comprehensive audiometric tests, Tympanometry testing for middle ear function, Otoacoustic Emissions testing for cochlear function, Hearing aid services, including selection, fitting, adjustments, cleaning, batteries and repairs,and more.
“My passion for audiology comes from seeing the struggles of my younger brother after he was diagnosed with permanent hearing loss as a child,” says Dr. O’Laughlin. “It is my desire to help individuals and families discover hearing loss as early as possible and to provide solutions for improved hearing.”
Dr. O’Laughlin is now accepting new patients. For more information or to make an appointment, please call Lane Audiology Clinic at 225-658-4154.

Bank of Zachary Announces Promotions
The Bank of Zachary has promoted two officers, President Mark Marionneaux announced recently. Loretta Barber has been promoted to Senior Vice President of Deposit Operations, and Amanda Moran has been promoted to Assistant Vice President and Loan Officer.
As Vice President, Barber currently oversees deposit compliance, account services team and supports online and mobile banking platforms. With this promotion she joins the senior management team and has a greater impact on policy and strategic initiatives. A graduate of LSU, she has been in banking for 37 years and with the Bank of Zachary for 29 years. She is also a 2017 graduate of the LBA Leadership School. Barber is a lifelong resident of Baker.
Moran was promoted to Assistant Vice President and Loan Officer after excelling in the mortgage loan officer training program. She has been in banking for 13 years and with the Bank of Zachary for 10 years, originally serving as Universal Banker supervisor and managing the Bank’s online services. She has been actively involved in the Bank’s support of local community events and establishing relationships with customers. Moran resides in Pride.
Founded in 1904, Bank of Zachary is the oldest state-chartered bank in East Baton Rouge Parish serving residents, businesses and communities. Bank of Zachary is locally owned and operated. The bank is an equal opportunity employer and equal housing lender. For more information, visit www.bankofzachary.com or call 225.654.2701.

New tax law impacts income for Guaranty Bank & Trust Co. employees
Three days before Christmas 2017, President Donald Trump signed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act into law, which will be a massive overhaul of the U.S. tax code.
In the simplest view, the new tax law will result in more after-tax income for most American households, beginning in February, when employers start using the new payroll withholding tables. The law also provided a one-time adjustment to taxable income for 2017.
The Board of Directors of Guaranty Bank & Trust Co. are pleased to pass a portion of this one-time tax savings to the employees of Guaranty Bank. The Board of Directors announced that the bank will distribute ½ of the one-time tax savings to all 62 employees. The one-time bonuses of up to $1,500 were based on employee seniority.
Guaranty Bank offers the most convenient banking services in New Roads, Livonia, Zachary, Port Allen, Maringouin and Grosse Tete. The Board of Directors of the bank are Hall L. Davis, IV, Dr. Donald Doucet, John L. Ewing, John C. Hopewell, III, Henry Olinde, Jr., J. Wade O’Neal III, F. Gregory Roy, Chad Soprano and Chairman of the Board, Collis Temple, Jr.

Denham Springs approves long-term recovery plan
The city’s Long Term Recovery Plan has been adopted. The Recovery plan encompasses various in three categories: Flood Recovery, Disaster Resilience and Community Resilience. Volunteers working on these projects meet regularly, and everyone is welcome to attend the meetings.
A copy of the plan with detailed descriptions of the projects can be found online at www.denhamstrong.com/plan or scan the QR code below. For more information about projects, meetings, or to get on the recovery plan email list, email jclark@cityofdenhamsprings.com.

Louisiana unemployment rate declines for seventh month
“This is seventh consecutive decline in our unemployment rate and that means more and more Louisianans are finding jobs and helping to grow our economy,” said Gov. Edwards. “By continuing to invest in our people with more workforce training and attracting companies to our state that will provide even more permanent employment, we are building a stronger foundation of potential employees and opportunities to work. There is certainly more to do, but there is also good reason to believe that Louisiana is on the verge of the type of prosperity that we have not seen in many years, and this recent decrease in our state’s jobless rate is further proof of that.”

Terri M. Lewis

Terri M. Lewis

Lewis appointed Vice President of Surgical and Emergency Services
Terri M. Lewis was named Vice President of Surgical and Emergency Services for North Oaks Health System effective Dec. 24.
In her expanded role, Lewis will add oversight of North Oaks Medical Center’s Level II Trauma Center program, the emergency department and employed emergency department physicians to her current responsibilities of managing surgical services.
A veteran North Oaks leader, Lewis joined the organization as a staff RN in 1981. She was promoted to head nurse of the surgery unit in 1984, and with the 1985 opening of the same day surgery unit, she handled developing policies and procedures, hiring staff and devising the quality improvement plan for the new area. In 1993, Lewis was promoted to vice president of surgical services and gained responsibility for all peri-operative services. In 2008, anesthesia services were added to the surgical services division.
In her various roles, Lewis has been an integral part of the design and operation of the expanded inpatient and outpatient surgical and anesthesia areas at North Oaks. She helped to facilitate the successful launch of the EPIC electronic health record in 2013. Her focus on safety and patient experience resulted in the division exceeding infection prevention goals, as well as significant and sustained gains in patients’ ratings of their care. In addition to mentoring an expert leadership team, she lectures on professional development for nurses in the ever-changing world of healthcare.