We’ll Gain An Hour

It is that time of year, the autumn, or fall. Upcoming Sunday will be the first of November. That is the date when the clock reclaims the hour of sleep we gained in the spring.

Daylight Saving Time will come to an end in the wee hours of the morning Sunday. Before bedtime, set your clocks back an hour so you will not be early to church.

Fire officials take this opportunity to remind you to make sure your emergency weather radio is working properly and to change the batteries in your smoke and CO2 detectors.

Or not… and just let your cell phone do it for you.


Moulton is 2020 recipient of NSU’s Bailey Faculty Research Award

Dr. Patrice Moulton, a professor of psychology at Northwestern State University, is the 2020 recipient of the Dr. Mildred Hart Bailey Faculty Research Award, presented annually to a member of the NSU faculty in recognition of outstanding research or distinguished artistic performance or creative work substantially completed within the past three years. The work is evaluated by its scholarly or creative significance; national, regional or local impact; originality and ingenuity of project design, and critical recognition by authorities in the field.

Moulton received a Fulbright Award in 2017 for her work in Nepal, where she served as a consultant and cultural ambassador while launching the country’s inaugural degree program in counseling psychology. Earlier this year was named president of the Louisiana Fulbright Chapter,

The Fulbright Program is the flagship international educational exchange program sponsored by the U.S. government. It is designed to increase mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the people of other countries.

“This scholarship has opened many doors I could not have imagined for teaching, research, publishing, presenting and collaborating with world leaders and researchers,” she said.

In three years, Moulton has completed two book publications, a Fulbright placement to Nepal, invited forums in Washington and Thailand concerning mental health awareness, published four articles, presented 14 international professional research papers with five of those being keynote addresses. She did so while remaining active on the NSU campus with full teaching loads, developing courses, chairing thesis, participating in NSU Research Day and mentoring both faculty and student research projects across campus.

“It has been challenging but extremely rewarding to represent NSU and Fulbright in the field of mental health,” she said.

Most of Moulton’s personal research design and productivity in recent years have been specifically related to mental health as related to human rights and social justice.

“Social justice seeks to ensure that people, particularly those who are most vulnerable in society, can have their voices heard, their rights defended and their views and needs genuinely considered when decisions are made about their lives,” Moulton said. “I have designed research projects, books, chapters and articles, volunteer work, presentations and keynote speeches around raising voices for social issues that impact disenfranchised populations.”

Moulton’s research has been recognized by the Fulbright Association and by leaders in higher education, mental health and international government. She assisted in writing curriculum and training faculty for the first master’s degree program in psychology in Nepal and has been invited to sit with government leaders and provide information regarding current status and recommendations for mental health legislation in the U.S., Thailand and Nepal.

Moulton served as a Fulbright Specialist to Nepal in 2018 and has been a member of the Fulbright Association since her return as a Fulbright alumna. She recently traveled to Thailand to serve as a Fulbright representative and has worked as liaison to the Fulbright Association housed in Washington, D.C. She was visiting faculty and academic consultant at the Institute of Crisis Management Studies/Kathmandu College of Management and presented at Samarpan Academy as international visiting faculty.

She authored “Helping Others” and coauthored “Clinical Supervision in the Helping Professions.”

In addition to the Fulbright recognition, Moulton has also be recognized with a humanitarian award for disaster relief following the 2017 Nepal earthquakes and was involved in the development of the early childhood development playroom at the Little Moon School and the dedication of the Dr. Patrice Moulton Library at the Rhombus School.

The Dr. Mildred Hart Bailey Research Award is normally presented during Research Day, which was cancelled last spring due to COVID-19. This year, nominations and applications were considered after the university returned to campus for the fall semester and start of the 2020-21 academic year.


Unrestrained Driver Killed in Red River Parish Crash

On October 30, 2020, just before 4:00 p.m., Louisiana State Police Troop G responded to a two-vehicle, fatal crash on Louisiana Highway 1 south of Louisiana Highway 509. This crash killed 39-year-old Adrian Toussaint of Natchitoches.

The initial investigation revealed a 2003 Buick passenger car, driven by Toussaint, was traveling northbound on Louisiana Highway 1. For reasons still under investigation, Toussaint’s vehicle crossed the centerline and struck the rear trailer tires of a southbound 2011 Mack tractor-trailer.

The driver of the tractor-trailer, who was properly restrained, was not injured in the crash. Toussaint, who was unrestrained, sustained fatal injuries and was pronounced dead. Toxicology samples were obtained and submitted for analysis. This crash remains under investigation.

Buckling up is the most effective way to protect yourself during a vehicle crash. Failure to take a few seconds to buckle up can have devastating consequences. Louisiana law requires every person in a vehicle, regardless of seating position, to be properly restrained day or night.

In 2020, Troop G has investigated 23 fatal crashes resulting in 27 deaths.


Lakeview FFA members place first in state in Floriculture Career Development Event

Lakeview FFA members placed first in state in the Floriculture Career Development Event. Members of the team are Emily Windham, Blake Smith, and Meagan Corley. Meagan Corley was State High Individual in the event scoring the most total points in the competition.

The Floriculture Career Development Event (CDE) requires students to identify plants, judge flower arrangements and solve problems. Participants also demonstrate skills in flower arranging, propagation and the preparation of floral and foliage products for sale.

This team event is designed to create an interest in career preparation for all current and future aspects of the floriculture industry through leadership development and hands on technical skill development using industry standards that are delivered through the agricultural education curriculum. Teams are judged on their ability to perform an assignment similar to one routinely performed in the floriculture industry.

Additionally, individual members are called up to contribute to the team’s effort by completing events such as a general floriculture examination, an identification of plant materials and equipment, a problem-solving exercise.

This event builds skills that are important to careers in greenhouse and field production management, garden center and floral shop management and floral design management. Students who excel show a well-rounded knowledge of horticulture, the cultivation of flowering and ornamental plants and the floral industry.


Notice of Death – October 30, 2020

NATCHITOCHES:
Warren Ronald Shepherd
August 25, 1927 – October 28, 2020
Visitation: Sunday, November 1 from 4-7 pm at Blanchard-St Denis Funeral Home.
Funeral services and entombment adjacent to his wife, will take place in Bakersfield, California.

Rhonda Rodriguez Maroney
February 27, 1967 – October 26, 2020
Service: Saturday, October 31 at 1 pm at First Assembly of God Church in Coushatta

Edwin Davidson, Jr.
September 12, 2003 – October 19, 2020
Arrangements TBA

Joe Louis Williams of Derry, Louisiana
October 29, 2020
Arrangements TBA

Larry Lee Davis, Sr.
October 28, 2020
Arrangements TBA


The HDBA’s 8th Annual Pumpkin Glow starts the Fall Season on a High Note

The Natchitoches downtown riverbank was packed with families celebrating the 2020 Pumpkin Glow sponsored by the Historic District Business Association (HDBA) Thursday, Oct 29. The popular family friendly event is still going strong in its 8th year and has become an integral part of the local fall scene. The stage area featured decorated pumpkins from local contestants vying for top honors. Ms. Victoria Wiggins garnered first prize, while the St. Mary’s first grade earned second place. Mr. Frank Perot won third place honors.

The fun will not stop tonight, however. Halloween is going to feature a full morning of family fun. In addition to the traditional “Witch Way to Main Street” costumed candy extravaganza, there will be the Farmers’ Market and a performance by our very own Indigeaux Belly Dance troupe. The dancers of Indigeaux will be joined by Shreveport’s Gems of Cairo. The morning’s events will also feature an Open Paddle on the Cane River. From kayaks and canoes to candy and quality produce and crafts, Halloween on the riverbank promises fun for every age. Each of the events are quality family fun and free to the public.

Performers from local dance studios kicked off the evening’s program, showing off their moves to the crowd in a variety of routines. They were followed by the NCHS Chiefettes. The evening was capped by some of the finest musicians to be found in the parish. The Middle School and NCHS orchestras each played several pieces for the appreciative audience. The evening also featured a costumed Dr. Grant Eloi who posed as a guest conductor.

The orchestras have built a remarkable legacy of excellence over the years and are a group of young people of whom we can all be proud. They have toured Europe, performed several times at New York City’s Carnegie Hall as well as at competitions in Disney World.

We at the Natchitoches Parish Journal have long believed that our parish’s children are the equal of any in the country. Give them opportunities and good leadership and they will rise to any challenge set before them. The young men and women of the Natchitoches Parish School System are superb ambassadors for our area!


Softball: Northwestern State set to hold intersquad scrimmages this weekend

There are two things Northwestern State softball head coach Donald Pickett is looking for this weekend. When his team takes the field for a three intersquad scrimmages Saturday and Sunday, Pickett wants to see confidence and aggressiveness.

The Lady Demons will play a total of three games this weekend – a doubleheader Saturday and one final scrimmage Sunday – and fans are welcome to attend. Saturday’s pair of games begin at 1 p.m., span five innings each with about 20-30 minutes between each contest. Sunday’s seven-inning affair starts at 12 p.m.

“Physically, we have a lot of talented kids on this team, so the big thing is the approach to the game,” Pickett said. “I want to see them being confident and aggressive in everything they’re doing.”

The Lady Demons have participated in full fall practices for the last few weeks. That’s nothing new. What is new, however, is the way in which NSU is practicing.

COVID-19 has made day-to-day activities quite different from years past. But that alteration hasn’t stopped the Lady Demons from improving and growing as a unit, and that credits goes to the leaders on the team.

“The team has been able to adapt to not only the COVID situation, but also to the new routine,” Pickett said. “We’ve got a lot of kids that have been around here for a few years, and they’re used to a routine that has been the same way every year. Now that’s been turned upside down. The coaches have had to adjust to that as have the players.

“We’ve had a lot of good leadership, and that’s paid off during this time.”

A good portion of that leadership had their spring season shortened due to the COVID-19 pandemic. NSU played 22 games in 2019 – sporting a 15-7 record – and began Southland Conference play with a three-game sweep of Sam Houston State.

The hot start to the season made the abrupt end to it that much more disappointing. That has made for an even more competitive fall ball period, and the team is looking forward to a weekend of game-like scenarios.

“It has been awhile since we’ve played some games,” Pickett said. “We’ve had two shortened versions of intersquad scrimmages so far, and the girls are excited about the weekend, and I’m looking forward to kind of seeing where we are at right now.”

 


GOODNESS GRACIOUS

By Tommy Rush

A few weeks ago, I walked out of Walmart and was surprised to hear live music. A very talented man was playing a trombone on the opposite side of the parking lot. Maybe you heard him as well. It was nice to hear the beautiful sound resonating across the entire parking lot. The sound was so good that I stood by my truck and listened for several minutes. As I listened, I noticed that a lot of other people had the same reaction. People were standing beside their vehicles listening to the gentleman playing his trombone.

Maybe we were all surprised by the sound of music or just the unusual scenario. It’s not everyday that you get serenaded in the Walmart parking lot. But I don’t really think that was the cause for my reaction or the reaction of the others. I believe live music just has a way of capturing our attention and producing joy inside of us. There’s something about live music that Apple Music, Spotify and iTunes just can’t replicate. No one walked out of Walmart that day and heard the sound of the man playing his trombone without smiling.

The more I have thought about the “live experience,” the more I was reminded of our need for “live relationships.” We were created for a relationship with God and with one another. Experiences that are live and in person do something that a screen or listening device can’t do. My daughter, who is a mother of four, recently shared with me that a newborn baby can only focus on objects 8-12 inches away from them. This is why when holding a baby, the child seems to fixate on your face. God created them with the ability to only see the distance from their little face to yours. Is there anything better than watching a newborn baby staring into the face of their mother while being cradled in her arms? Make no mistake about it; we are made for relationships!

Last March when everything shut down, we all learned this first hand. Our church services went live streamed, our meetings went to Zoom, our schools went digital. Overnight we went from communities gathering together, to people living isolated behind screens. It’s hard not to be grateful for the many advancements in technology. So many things in life are easier because of it. However, we miss so much when we miss making live connections. We were made to rejoice with those who rejoice and weep with those who weep. Singing together, worshipping together and sharing in a good time of conversation around a table provides so much more than a Face Time conversation ever will. I guess I’m just old fashioned, but I’m convinced we were made by God for “live” connections!

I’ve listened to a lot of music through earbuds connected to my phone, but I’ll not soon forget the live music that captured my attention in the Walmart parking lot last week. Nor will I forget the many smiling faces of all the people who enjoyed listening to the music with me.


NSU Fall Commencement will include 5 ceremonies

Northwestern State University has modified Fall Commencement plans to follow health and safety protocols. Degrees will be conferred during five ceremonies beginning Thursday, Dec. 17-Friday, Dec. 18 in Prather Coliseum.

“Obviously, we want our graduates and their families to be able to celebrate their accomplishments, but we must keep health and safety in mind,” said Dr. Greg Handel, provost and vice president for Academic Affairs. “We have put a lot of thought into planning a series of ceremonies and ask for the help and understanding of graduates and guests as we do our best to present safe and memorable commencement programs.”

Students who completed their degrees in May and August who wish to participate in Fall Commencement should contact the Registrar’s Office by emailing registrar@nsula.edu by Dec. 4.

There will be two ceremonies for the College of Nursing and School of Allied Health on Thursday, Dec. 17.

Beginning at 10 a.m. Dec. 17, degrees will be conferred to graduates earning the Bachelor of Science in Nursing, Master of Science in Nursing and Doctor of Nursing Practice.

Beginning at 1 p.m. Dec. 17, degrees will be conferred on graduates earning the Associate of Science in Nursing and bachelor’s and graduate degrees from the School of Allied Health.

Three ceremonies will take place on Friday. Dec. 18.

Beginning at 10 a.m. Dec 18, degrees will be conferred to all graduates of the College of Business and Technology and to graduates earning associate degrees from the College of Arts and Sciences.

Beginning at 1 p.m. Dec. 18, degrees will be conferred to all graduates earning bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the College of Arts and Sciences.

Beginning at 4 p.m. Dec. 18, bachelor’s and master’s degrees will be conferred to all graduates of the College of Education and Human Development.

The ceremonies will all be ticketed events with Prather Coliseum limited to 25 percent capacity. Graduates will be allowed four guest tickets and tickets must be obtained in advance. Information on requesting tickets will be available in the coming weeks. Graduates and guests must wear masks and practice social distancing as Phase 3 health and safety protocols will be enforced. Handel recommended that guests with tickets arrive at least 40 minutes prior to each ceremony.

All ceremonies will be livestreamed at http://www.nsula.edu and will be recorded.

Updated information will be posted on the Northwestern State University website as plans are finalized.

“Although circumstances will limit the number of guests in the audience, we are working very hard to make this a special occasion for our graduates, especially in light of the challenges they have overcome in the last several months,” Handel said. “We look forward to a series of meaningful and memorable commencement ceremonies this December.”


Many High School Principal arrested for alleged sexual assaults dating back to the 90s

Sabine Parish Sheriff Aaron Mitchell announced the arrest of Many High School principal, Norman Ural Booker III, age-49 of Many, for alleged sexual assaults of juveniles while he was a coach in Sabine Parish in the mid-1990s. Two victims have come forward in recent months disclosing sexual acts by Booker while they were students in high school. Detectives obtained two arrests warrants from the 11th Judicial District Judge for Sexual Battery, Oral Sexual Battery, Misdemeanor Sexual Battery and 2 counts of Indecent Behavior with Juveniles. No bond has been set at this time.


Burrell to be honored by alma mater

Scott Burrell, director of the Dear School of Creative and Performing Arts at Northwestern State University, will be inducted into the Catawba College Theatre Arts Department’s Blue Masque Hall of Fame at a virtual event during the College’s Homecoming Week celebration Nov. 2-8.
The Blue Masque Hall of Fame is in its 13th year and recognizes and perpetuates the noteworthy theatre tradition of Catawba College by honoring and memorializing individuals who have made outstanding contributions to this tradition. The honor acknowledges the alumni, faculty or staff who have made outstanding contributions to the world of theatre.

Burrell was named director earlier this year. Before becoming director, Burrell was the head of the NSU Theatre and Dance program for 12 years. Burrell has been a member of the theatre faculty since 1998. Under his guidance the theatre/dance program grew its enrollment by 30 percent, established a BFA in Dance, four faculty lines were created and over $300,000 in grant funds were awarded.

Burrell recently coordinated a $500,000 renovation to NSU’s A.A. Fredricks Auditorium that will enhance the facility which hosts a variety of university and community events.

NSU’s theatre and dance program has graduated a number of successful students who have moved into all areas of professional theatre and dance. Before the pandemic, there were five NSU theatre and dance alumni on Broadway. His educational background includes a B.A in Theatre from Catawba College in 1994 and an M.F.A. in Directing from Virginia Commonwealth University.

He has served in a number of leadership roles at Northwestern State including the University Registrar Search Committee chair, Grievance Committee chair, vice president of the Faculty Senate, and many other committee memberships. He was also awarded the NSU Faculty Advisor of the Year in 2017. Burrell is a member of the University of Louisiana System’s Management and Leadership Institute. Institute participants include faculty and staff members from each of the System’s nine member institutions who have exhibited upper management potential and a desire for leadership development.

Burrell holds a teacher certification in the Michael Chekhov Acting Technique.


NPSO: NORTH NATCHITOCHES PARISH WOMAN ARRESTED IN ANIMAL CRUELTY CASE

A disturbing case of alleged animal neglect at a home has led to the arrest of a north Natchitoches Parish woman on cruelty to animal charges according to the Natchitoches Parish Sheriff’s Office.

On Tuesday morning October 27 at approximately 8:30am, Deputies assigned to the NPSO Patrol Bureau responded to a complaint of alleged animal neglect in the 400 block of Coffee Crossing Road near Ashland, La.

The complaint focused on several dogs and domestic pigs (swine) being malnourished at the residence.

Deputies arrived on scene and observed several dogs chained to trees and t-posts around the exterior of the home.

Deputies observed six dogs, (4-pit bulldogs and 2-small dogs) without any food and a small amount of dirty water supply.

Three dogs were extremely malnourished , appeared very weak and were in disturbing deplorable living conditions according to investigating deputies.

In an adjacent large fenced area, deputies observed the skeleton remains of a domestic pig (swine) that died of unknown causes.

Deputies assigned to the NPSO Animal Services Unit were summoned to the scene.

Animal Services seized all six dogs for veterinary evaluation.

Deputies attempted to contact the homeowner although no one was at the residence.

Deputies continued the investigation and later found the owner of the animals identified as Christy Michelle Anderson at a residence on Campti Bayou Road in Campti, La.

While speaking with Miss Anderson, she confirmed ownership of the animals stating she knew this was coming”.

Deputies arrested:

Christy Michelle Anderson, 41, of 400 block of Coffee Crossing Road, Ashland, La. was charged with 6-counts of Cruelty to Animals.

Deputies say it appeared that Anderson abandoned the animals and did not properly take care of them.

The case will be turned over to the Natchitoches Parish District Attorney’s Office for review and prosecution.


Lakeview Ag, FFA students participate in RoyOMartin’s Women in Manufacturing Day

Lakeview agriculture students and FFA members were able to take part in the Women in Manufacturing Day virtual event hosted by RoyOMartin. This event is designed for young women to gain an awareness of career opportunities available in our manufacturing industry. Students heard from female leaders in RoyOMartin production and support roles, such as employee benefits, procurement, shipping, and other areas. The hosts of the event also held a Q&A session to answer questions from the virtual audience.

This event is offered in conjunction with Manufacturing Day, a project of the National Association of Manufacturers and the Manufacturing Institute.