News & Events

The Club of New Orleans' members in the news




The Louisiana Center for Women in Government and Business hosted its Louisiana Girls Leadership Academy, bringing together high school students who learned invaluable life skills that include how to lead through communication, relationship building and public service.

This year’s theme was “Light the Torch and Lead,” and the event took place in June at Nicholls State University. Dr. Laura Badeaux and her team created a dynamic experience for the young leaders.

The event culminated in the Governor’s Dinner at the home of the Doctors Raj and Gayathri Talluri. The keynote speaker was Louisiana Commissioner of Administration Jay Dardenne, who provided inspiring words as to how to be an effective leader. He was joined by Nicholls State University President Dr. Jay Clune, LCWGB corporate board president Sandra Thompson Herman, vice president Sandy Rosenthal and corporate board members Stephanie Burks, Diane Hollis, and Faith Nola. Corporate board member Allison Clune served as the dinner chair.

At the end of the evening, five LGLA ambassador candidates took to the stage to present their campaign speeches, embracing the skills they learned during the academy with enthusiasm, optimism, integrity (and bravery)!

To learn more about the Louisiana Girls Leadership Academy, CLICK HERE.


Sandy Rosenthal’s book, Words Whispered in Water: Why the Levees Broke in Hurricane Katrina, documents Sandy’s crusade to hold the Army Corp of Engineers accountable for the flooding of New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina. Sandy founded the influential non-profit, garnering more than 25,000 supporters and chapters in five states.  Her book covers how she, and her group, changed the national narrative about the Hurricane Katrina levee breach event in New Orleans in 2005 from natural disaster to federal civil engineering failure.

To learn more about the book, visit



On July 26, 1896, the first fixed-seating movie theater in the United States opened at 623 Canal Street in New Orleans.  Admission to the 400-seat theater—basically a showroom fitted with a projector and filled with chairs and used church pews—was 10 cents. Now, over a century later, The Historic Vitascope Hall has finally been commemorated with an historic marker that celebrates the location where American theatre-goers got their first glimpses of the technology that added motion to pictures.

The marker was funded by Russ and Sandra Herman and made possible by the efforts of internationally known film historians and archivists Ed and Susan Poole, the Louisiana Department of Culture, Recreation and Tourism’s Recreational Trails Program Administrator Michael W. Domingue, Movie Poster Archives Executive Director Linda Thurman and the Office of Lt. Gov. Billy Nungesser. Lynne Coxwell, who oversees the Louisiana Historical Marker Program, helped with the application process. Mayor LaToya Cantrell’s executive office director Amy Rodenberger and director of constituent services Bryon Cornelison helped move the marker project forward, with installation donated by Louisiana-based engineer Paul Flower of Woodward Design + Build.  The permanent installation was completed at the corner of Canal St. and Exchange Place on June 15, 2020.

To learn more about Vitascope Hall and the historic marker, visit the Historic Vitascope Hall web page.


In 2019, New Orleans Saints fans struggled with roller coasters of emotion when the infamous referee “no call” led to the Saints being eliminated as Super Bowl Championship contenders. The Saints Nation took to social media to express outrage and pleas with the City of New Orleans to host a parade in honor of the Saints’ tremendous season, despite its untimely ending. Moreover, they wanted the event held on Super Bowl Sunday in protest of the call and what followed.

Recognizing that the logistics and costs of a parade in these circumstances made it an unlikely possibility, Club of New Orleans member Kim Bergeron proposed, and ultimately was approved, to present an alternative option. With just five days from permit to promotion and execution, the resulting “Blackout & Gold Second Line” made headline news around the world and brought much-needed catharsis to more than 30,000 Saints fans who participated, plus many more who watched and commented on the live stream from throughout the U.S. and countries around the world. “Cheated, Not Defeated” was the theme and fans showed the world that the true marks of champions are not how they fall but how they rise. See the story and media coverage here:  


Sandra Thompson Herman’s four-decade journey of public service and trailblazing efforts has been extensively documented in writings, photographs and additional materials, a collection that now holds a place amidst historic documents in the University of Louisiana at Lafayette’s Edith Garland Dupré Library.

In 1975, Sandra designed Louisiana’s Department of Culture, Recreation and Tourism in 1975, which she led from 1976 through 1978. In 1979, she became the first woman to run for Louisiana’s secretary of state, defeated by a narrow margin. In 1980, Sandra embraced the state’s oil boom, launching a trucking company to serve the industry. Over the next 15 years, she grew the business from a small fleet of three trucks to 12, serving parishes throughout south Louisiana. She returned to state government in 1996, serving three terms as executive director of the Atchafalaya Basin Program–two under Governor Mike Foster and a third under Governor Kathleen Blanco.

The donation ceremony took place on March 6, 2020, in the university’s Alumni Center. It included remarks from the university’s President Dr. E. Joseph Savoie, Department of Communications Associate Professor Dr. Dedria Givens-Carroll, the library’s Head of Special Collections Zachary Stein and several of Herman’s former colleagues and employees.