The Leadership EXCEL June session focusing on Civil & Criminal Justice consisted of a visit to Angola State Penitentiary on Wednesday, June 20. The objective of the session was to acquaint participants with the state criminal justice system. Members leading the all-day session were: Vice-Chairman, Ryan Kitchen and Chairmans, George Pourciau and Paul Molbert
The first stop of the tour brought participants to the prison’s auto repair training facility. This is just one of the many trade skills that inmates can learn and become certified in while being incarcerated. It is with training like this that Angola State Penitentiary hopes to be able to release inmates that are productive members of society. After speaking with one of the instructors, who is currently serving a life sentence, the class was given a walking tour of the facility before returning to the bus to continue the tour of the 18,000 acre site.
Participants were also able to tour the Our Lady of Guadalupe Chapel, the dog yard, the lethal injection table, and death row. Finishing up the day was the tour of ‘Red Hat’ Cellblock—where the most unmanageable and dangerous criminals were housed in the past, along with the electric chair. This building is now on the National Register of Historic Places.
Participating in the Criminal Justice session were: Tom Trahan, Huey Decou, Joe Mitchell, Jeremy Leleux, Jay Domingue, Chris Kratzer, Chance Oustalet, Jimmy Prevost, Eric Gautreaux, Kayla Duhon, Tears Mickens, Ali Klentzman, Dale Robertson-Agosto, Tiffany Richey, Claire Benoit, Rachel Broussard, Candi Richard, Angie Bourgeois, Jenny Foreman.
This program would not be possible without the support and sponsorship of the business community, including Acadia General Hospital, Lafayette General Hospital, Jennings American Legion Hospital, Acadia St. Landry Hospital, Farmers State Bank, Rayne Building and Loan, Suzy Webb—Acadia Parish Farm Bureau, and Home Bank
Leadership EXCEL stands for Experience in Community, Enterprise and Leadership. The program is designed to prepare emerging leaders to meet the future leadership needs of our community. Through the exchange of viewpoints and experiences, participants are exposed to the challenges, opportunities, and vital issues affecting Acadia and Jeff Davis parishes. The EXCEL program is hosted by the Acadia Parish Chamber of Commerce in conjunction with the Jeff Davis Business Alliance.