OUT TO LUNCH finds creative business consultant Aileen Bennett conducting business Acadiana style: over lunch. Each week Aileen invites guests from Acadiana's business community to join her. Beyond the foundations of the Acadiana economy - oil, cuisine, music - there is a vast network of entrepreneurs, small businesses, and even some of the country's largest companies who call Acadiana home. Out to Lunch is the cafeteria of the wider Acadiana business community. You can also hear the show on KRVS 88.7FM.
We hear a lot in the national news about the global economy, and how we’re all connected. Here in Acadiana we can certainly see how our families are connected, but it’s often difficult to see our connection to the rest of the state, much less the nation, and the world.
Sitting in for Peter Ricchiuti on this edition of Out to Lunch, Aileen Bennett introduces two local businessmen who are both part of the bigger picture. They’re using skills they’ve picked up outside of Acadiana to grow businesses that extend beyond our borders.
Tommy Hebert is Manager of Public Affairs for the Atmos Energy Corporation. If you’re not familiar with Atmos, they’re the country's largest, natural-gas-only distributor. They have more than three million customers in eight states - from the Blue Ridge Mountains in the East to the Rocky Mountains in the West.
You might be surprised to learn that there are folks with names like “Rodier” in the U.S. outside of Acadiana. In places like Montana. That’s where Bill Rodier came from before settling in Acadiana, a decade or so ago, and becoming Executive Director of St Landry Parish Economic Development.
Both Bill and Tommy stress the importance of the one thing we in Acadiana pretty much all agree is at the center of all business: people. Both businessmen agree that above all they are people people.
Out to Lunch is recorded live over lunch at Cafe Vermilionville in Lafayette.