Westley Annis westley at da-parish.com
Sat Sep 5 09:53:37 EDT 2009


The 49th Man and Woman of the Year for St. Bernard Parish have been
named by the members of the St. Bernard Business and Professional Women's
Club. "Since 1961 the members of our club have chosen two individuals from
the community who exemplify the qualities of leadership, community service,
and dedication to the people of St. Bernard Parish," said club president,
Lauren Gibson. This year's honorees are Fire Chief Thomas Stone and
businesswoman Claudette Arsaga Reuther. The gala affair, which is the
club's signature event during National Business Women's Week, will be held
Wednesday, October 21, 2009 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. in the South Ballroom of
the Fred Sigur Civic Center at 8245 West Judge Perez Drive in Chalmette.

"We never worry that we'll run out of honorees because there are so
many people committed to our parish who give their time and talent for a
better St. Bernard," said Deborah Keller, chair of the event and a former
recipient of the award in 2001.

Tickets are $30 per person, payable only by check to St. Bernard BPW, must
be purchased in advance. Tickets will be sold starting Monday, September 14
at "All About Me" at 1201 East Judge Perez Drive in Chalmette between 11
a.m. and 6 p.m. Tuesday thru Saturday. Anyone unable to obtain tickets
before October 16, can contact club treasurer, Suzanne Sweeney, at
504-276-5273 or 504-908-3023 to make alternate arrangements for tickets.

The social will begin at 6 p.m. followed by a buffet dinner and awards
program. Reuther and Stone will receive their prestigious crystal awards, as
well as proclamations from the State legislature and Governor's Office.

Claudette Arsaga Reuther was graduated from Louisiana State University. She
is a successful realtor having achieved multi-million dollar award status in
a career spanning more than 30 years. She is a board member of the
Metropolitan Association of Realtors Political Action Committee. She has
served many organizations bringing her business expertise to benefit various
trade, civic, and charitable organizations which include chair of the St.
Bernard Chamber of Commerce in 2006 and 2007, member of the St. Bernard
Economic Development Commission, secretary of the St. Bernard Community
Foundation, and after Hurricane Katrina, a member of the St. Bernard
Citizen's Recovery Committee.

Twice she was honored by Murphy Oil Corporation's Spirit of St. Bernard
Program for her dedication to the community. Her employer, Prudential
Gardner Realty, named her and husband, Cliff, who is also with Prudential,
Citizens of the Year in 2007. She was the first President of the American
Heart Association of St. Bernard Parish and is charter member of the St.
Bernard Chamber of Commerce.

The Reuthers are the proud parents of St. Bernard businessman, Stephen, and
attorney, Stephanie.

Fire Chief Thomas Stone has dedicated his career to public service
through the St. Bernard Parish fire department. He is Chairman of the
Parish Local Emergency Planning Committee and oversees th116 uniformed men
and women who work as first responders to fires and rescue calls. He has
been a fire instructor at Delgado Community College Maritime and Industrial
Training Center and the University of New Orleans Center for Society, Law
and Justice, training hundreds of people over many years. He is a familiar
face to residents, often at the scene during times of crisis. Stone has
become synonymous with the parish fire department, having risen through the
ranks to command its top leadership position. His leadership and dedication
were recognized early in his career when he was named Co-Fireman of the Year
by the VFW Post 7194 in 1987, 1988 and 1990. He was named Fire Chief of the
Year in 1996 by the Louisiana Alarm Association. In 1996 he also received
the Louisiana Emergency Preparedness Award. He is a graduate of Chalmette
High School and has been married to the former Lauren Schaeffer for 29
years. He is the devoted father of two sons, Thomas, Jr. and Chad and one
daughter, Nikki.

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