Paul Aucoin's Bertel Award

Port Executive Director Honored with Annual Award

Paul Aucoin, Executive Director of the Port of South Louisiana, was named the 2021 recipient of the C. Alvin Bertel Award, which is given by the World Trade Center New Orleans each year to “an individual who has made significant contributions to the Louisiana port and maritime community.” Aucoin has headed the Port for eight years, and in that time has led massive investments in infrastructure and industrial development, which have in turn yielded thousands of jobs in the region. “I am very honored to have been selected for the 2021 C. Alvin Bertel” said Aucoin in a press release. “My relationship with the maritime industry and its members has been very special. Both have provided me with a lifetime of friendships, experiences and the chance to make a difference for the home that we call Louisiana. A sincere thanks to the Port of South Louisiana Commissioners, my industry colleagues, and to our wonderful port team members that make the Port of South Louisiana great.”

SmartPort Initiative Receives National Funding

On June 6, 2021, Gov. John Bel Edwards announced a $1.6 million grant from the U.S. Economic Development Association would be awarded to the state’s SmartPort initiative, which is designed to transmit data between ports in real time in order to improve efficiency. The award will be matched with an additional $1.4 million contributed by state and port partners. The Port of South Louisiana, the Port of New Orleans and the Port of Greater Baton Rouge are the three main ports working with Louisiana Economic Development on the SmartPort project, along with other port entities along the Lower Mississippi River. The project is slated for an early 2022 launch.

- Sponsors -

Valero Partners with RPCC

International manufacturer Valero, which operates a St. Charles Parish refinery in Norco, has committed $1 million to River Parishes Community College (RPCC) for use at the newly-opened United Way of St. Charles campus. Construction of the campus cost an estimated $3.3 million and spans a 3.9 acre site. The United Way campus offers students the opportunity to work toward an associate’s degree in process technology or instrumentation, skills that directly feed into leading industries in the region, without the need for long-distance commutes. Valero’s donation will enable RPCC and United Way to expand the campus’ offerings for both existing and future students. The Valero logo has been added to the St. Charles campus building to honor the college’s new partner.

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