Good to Know is a monthly roundup of news, business, events and other information happening throughout northwest Louisiana.


SWEPCO’s Home Performance with ENERGY STAR® Receives National Recognition

The American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) has recognized Southwestern Electric Power Company (SWEPCO), an American Electric Power company (NYSE: AEP), for having one of America’s outstanding energy efficiency programs. In a national review, ACEEE selected SWEPCO’s Arkansas-specific Home Performance with ENERGY STAR® program to receive an Exemplary Program Award based on its effectiveness and innovation in helping residential customers achieve greater levels of energy efficiency.

“These programs are delivering energy savings that help customers reduce their costs and maintain comfortable, durable, safe homes and productive businesses,” said Rachel Gold, ACEEE’s Utilities Program senior manager.

SWEPCO’s Home Performance with ENERGY STAR® offers no-cost home energy assessments and energy efficiency improvements. In addition to a thorough evaluation of a customer’s home energy use, an approved contractor provides energy-saving, comfort-enhancing upgrades as needed.

“ACEEE conducted this national review to recognize outstanding energy efficiency programs and honor the people and organizations responsible for their success,” added Seth Nowak, ACEEE’s lead author and project manager of this review.

Home Performance with ENERGY STAR is among 53 outstanding programs profiled in the full report, “The New Leaders of the Pack: ACEEE’s Fourth National Review of Exemplary Energy Efficiency Programs.”

“We’re proud to have this program that helps customers save a meaningful amount of money on their energy bills,” said SWEPCO Senior Energy Efficiency & Consumer Program Coordinator Kent Tomlinson. “Our hope, with this national honor, is for other utilities to replicate this model for their customer base so we can build a brighter future together.”

SWEPCO also has a wide range of energy efficiency programs for residential, small business, commercial and industrial customers.

Citizens National Bank Appoints Lance Jackson to Sen. VP of Credit Administration

Citizens National Bank announced the appointment of Lance Jackson as Citizens National Bank’s senior vice president of Credit Administration. With over 27 years banking experience in numerous positions, Jackson’s expertise lies with the analysis and evaluation of corporate and consumer loans.

“Lance adds a wealth of knowledge and integrity to our CNB banking family. His experience and qualifications contribute greatly to our team. These attributes are essential in keeping Citizens National Bank the strong institution that it is,” said Jason D. Smith, Citizens National Bank president and CEO.

Jackson has made his home in Bossier City since 1994. He has a Bachelor of Science degree in accounting from Louisiana Tech University. He’s married with two daughters, enjoys hunting and fishing and has worked with several non-profit organizations over the years.

Pathways in Education Louisiana Charter School Students Traveling to Italy

On Feb. 5, Pathways in Education Louisiana will send a group of students to Italy for 12 days on an experiential learning trip. The students have prepared for the experience in advance by studying the language, culture, and history of Italy.

The students will visit basilicas and cathedrals, study architecture and works of art, see the works of Da Vinci and Michelangelo, ride in gondolas, and witness the Leaning Tower of Pisa as well as the Colosseum. Students will be immersed in the Italian culture while visiting Venice, Verona, Pisa, Florence, Naples, Pompeii, Rome, and Vatican City. Students will study the health care system, political system, transportation system, culture, language, and history of Italy while earning high school credits.

“Pathways in Education believes in expanding its students’ horizons through experiential learning. We are proud to offer students the opportunity to tour multiple cities and immerse themselves in the language, history, and culture of Italy at no cost to them. It is our desire that students will experience personal growth along with a broadened global perspective,” said Joseph Hearington, principal of Pathways in Education Louisiana.

This trip is completely free to Pathways’s students as it is part of the school curriculum. Pathways in Education is a tuition-free, public charter high school, serving the students of Caddo Parish.

American Heart Association’s NWLA Go Red for Women luncheon set for Feb. 15 

The American Heart Association’s signature women’s initiative, Go Red for Women, is a comprehensive movement to increase women’s heart health awareness and serve as a catalyst for change to improve the lives of women globally.  Go Red is not only for women, men are encouraged to participate and make changes in their lives to improve their heart health. 

The Go Red for Women luncheon will take place 10 a.m. Feb 15 at the Shreveport Convention Center, 400 Caddo St. in Shreveport. This event engages and inspires women to take charge of their heart health, so they can live longer, healthier lives.  

Guests can participate in free health screenings, a silent auction, and a jewelry pull — limited number of tickets available. At 12:15 p.m., the ticketed heart-healthy luncheon and program begins with the stories of local women affected personally by heart disease or stroke.  First Lady Donna Edwards will be an honored guest at this year’s luncheon. The NWLA Go Red for Women luncheon is chaired this year by Pam Barker and sponsored nationally by CVS Health, Local sponsors include:  CHRISTUS Health, Capital One bank, Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Louisiana, Dr. Peggy Murphy, Willis Knighton Hospital, CHRISTUS Physicians Group, and AFS Logistics. Event sponsorship opportunities and table sponsorships are still available. 

Tickets for the NWLA Go Red for Women luncheon are $100 payable in advance. For reserved seating sponsor a personalized table for eight. Jewelry pull tickets are $50 at registration. To purchase tickets and for more information, please call 318.230.6956 or 225.666.4293. 

Woman’s Department Club to host Mardi Gras Jazz Brunch

The Woman’s Department Club is gearing up for its Mardi Gras Jazz Brunch at 11:30 a.m. Feb. 16 at the Woman’s Department Club, 802 Margaret Place in Shreveport. Chair Barbara Zerrahn is a former Queen of Centaur and from southeast Louisiana, so her Mardi Gras roots run deep. The ladies are preparing a brunch with mimosas and there will be a costume contest for attendees. The Krewe Royalty will lead guests in a 2nd Line throughout the building. Tickets are $35. RSVP at 318.222.4186. 

Dress for Success Shreveport-Bossier to host Red Hanger fundraiser Feb. 21

Dress for Success Shreveport-Bossier will host its annual fundraiser, the Red Hanger Event, at 6:30 p.m. on Feb. 21 inside Sam’s Town Hotel & Casino. Individual tickets are $75 and sponsorships currently are available. The event raises funds to support the overall mission, vision and purpose of the organization which serves nearly 400 women in the community. 

Attendees will be treated to a style show, celebrity style show, client stories, dinner and a silent auction. “This is an evening to share with our community the experiences and triumphs of our clients as they receive vital services from the four programs we offer and move to be self-sufficient women,” said Erica McCain, executive director of Dress for Success Shreveport-Bossier.   

Silent auction items include but are not limited to: jewelry from McCary’s Jewelers, a golf package from East Ridge Country Club, an autographed print by William Joyce, artwork, a Sci-Port membership package, gift cards to White House Black Market and Talbots and more.  

Sponsors for the event are Bank of Montgomery, MidSouth Bank, Aeropres, Daniels Inc., Goodwill, Kelly Services, Manpower, Sci-Port: Louisiana’s Science Center, Lang Orthodontics, SWEPCO, Twisted Root, Cypress Operating, Metro Aviation and Iberia Bank. 

To purchase tickets or sponsorships email [email protected] or call 318.674.3509. 

Dress for Success Shreveport-Bossier promotes the economic independence of disadvantaged women by providing professional attire, a network of support and the career development tools to help women thrive in work and in life. Programs provided include the Confident Suiting Program, Women of the Workforce, and the Professional Women’s Group.

Shreve Memorial Library Main Branch Offers New Cooking Classes

Shreve Memorial Library’s Main Branch is offering new cooking classes in 2019. The downtown branch provides an opportunity for bakers of all skill levels to learn new tricks and practice making an assortment of baked goods. Instruction in how to make homemade biscuits, pizza dough, dinner rolls, pie crusts and cinnamon rolls are just a few of the classes being offered.

Cooking classes are free and open to adults age 18 and older. Because these classes are popular and seating is limited, registration is required. Ingredients are supplied by the library branch, and registered attendees are asked to bring a large mixing bowl, wooden spoon and apron to class.

Classes take place from 6-7 p.m. on the fourth Tuesday of each month at the Main Branch, located at 424 Texas St. in downtown Shreveport. Upcoming classes include No-Knead Dinner Roll Class on Feb. 26 and Cinnamon Rolls on March 26. Registered attendees will need to bring a rolling pin in addition to the mixing bowl, wooden spoon and apron.

Registration is required for all classes and is subject to availability. To register for any of the cooking classes listed, please call the branch at 318.226.5897. For more information about these and other Shreve Memorial Library programs, please visit www.shreve-lib.org.

LSUS Alumni Homecoming Dance to take place Feb. 8

Southern Roots, one of the area’s premiere bands will headline the LSUS Alumni Homecoming Dance Feb. 8 in the University Center Ballroom. The event is for LSUS alumni and their guests. Singles, couples and groups are welcome. Seating is limited and a sellout is expected. The event takes place from 6-10 p.m. and features live music, a buffet dinner featuring Southern comfort food by The Blue Frog of Marshall, Texas, an interactive photo booth, and a silent auction. Tickets are $25 per person (plus tax) and can be purchased at eventbrite.com/e/2019-lsus-alumni-homecoming-dinner-dance-tickets-53973412931. Parking is free.              

For information about reserved or Elite Sponsor Tables for eight, email [email protected] or call 318.797.5190. 

The LSUS Alumni Association was founded in 1977. It supports the mission of LSU Shreveport by managing events, recognizing alumni leadership, training volunteers, connecting alumni and building scholarships. 

Bossier Arts Council to Encourage Local Music Development via New Challenges

Beginning on Valentine’s Day, the Bossier Arts Council (BAC) will host a series of bi-monthly battle of the bands contests titled “The East Bank Music Challenges” in the East Bank District & Plaza. Each event will feature a new musical challenge with various themes.

The first challenge is titled “The East Bank Cupid Challenge 2019” and will take place from 6-11 p.m. on Feb. 14. Admission is free. This challenge requires bands and artists to write two original Valentine-related songs and perform them live, during which the audience will vote for their favorite performance. The winners will receive a custom-made trophy and the title of “The East Bank Cupid of 2019”, as well as a cash prize of $150. Various food trucks, artists and vendors will also be available to help provide a fun date-night or solo experience this coming Valentine’s Day.

“The goal of these challenges is to encourage bands from the Shreveport-Bossier area to push their creative limits, network, exit their comfort zones, and potentially acquire a new audience,” said Jeremy Hefner, of the BAC and organizer of the event. “There’s so much talent in our community and we want to create an experience that is accessible to all local musicians.”

Musicians and bands interested in competing will be able to sign up from through Feb. 8 at www.bossierarts.org. Registration for musicians is free and open to all ages. Vendor registration for the event ($30 booth fee will apply) is also available at www.bossierarts.org. 

For more information about the East Bank Music Challenges, visit Bossier Arts Council’s Facebook page, email [email protected], or call 318.741.8310.

Gregory Kallenberg Named 2019 Champion of Culture

The Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities (LEH), in partnership with Lieutenant Governor Billy Nungesser, has selected local director Gregory Kallenberg as the 2019 Champion of Culture. The award, which has been given annually since 2015, is part of the state humanities council’s effort to honor individuals and organizations who have made significant contributions to the study and understanding of the humanities. Kallenberg and the other award winners will be honored on April 4 at the 2019 LEH Bright Lights Awards Dinner in Lafayette.

A native of Shreveport, Kallenberg is a documentary director known for Haynesville: A Nation’s Hunt for an Energy Future (2009). Kallenberg is also the founder of the Louisiana Film Prize, a narrative film contest with a grand prize of $50,000 — the largest short film prize in the world. Competing films must be shot in Northwest Louisiana, helping to grow the state’s film industry. The festival has led to the addition of the Music Prize and the Food Prize, all of which take place during Shreveport’s annual Prize Week.

“There’s this effect that we want to have that really does put a glow on this place,” said Kallenberg, speaking of his desire to increase the region’s cultural economy. “My wife’s from Texas, my kids were born in Austin, but across the board, we’ve all fallen in love with this state as a whole, and we want us all to be successful. I think that that’s the ultimate goal.”