Ieyoub elected president of LC City Council
Lake Charles City Council members welcomed councilman Johnnie Thibodeaux and Mayor Nic Hunter to their first council meeting as city elected officials Wednesday, and made several notable appointments.
The council, which annually elects a new president and vice president, approved former vice president John Ieyoub as president, replacing Rodney Geyen, and Mark Eckard as vice president.
Ieyoub thanked Geyen for providing a good example of what a president should be.
“If I can be half the president you were over the past year, I think we’ll be OK,” Ieyoub said. “I appreciate your guidance. You’re a great friend, and I’m glad that we get to work together as colleagues.”
Ieyoub said he’s looking forward to working with the new mayor and excited about the city’s future.
Next, the council voted to reappoint five city employees to four-year terms as required by the city charter, the first of which was city administrator.
Hunter announced in May that he intended to keep John Cardone on as city administrator, a position he has held for 17 years under Randy Roach’s administration. Hunter said he worked closely with Cardone during the transition period and learned a lot from his extensive knowledge of city operations.
“Combined with some fresh energy, some fresh ideas, some new blood, I think we are going to make one heck of a team,” Hunter said. The council unanimously approved the reappointment.
Hunter also introduced his pick for city attorney, David Morgan of Stockwell Sievert law firm. He replaces longtime city attorney Billy Loftin.
After hearing good things about the firm and meeting with Morgan several times, Hunter said, he offered him the position.
“I believe that Mr. Morgan is going to do an excellent job, and I’m very excited to be working with his firm,” Hunter said.
Ieyoub said both Hunter and Morgan have “hit the ground running fast over the past few months” and that he appreciates their initiative.
The three remaining appointments were Wendy Goodwin, human resources and personnel director; Karen Harrell, finance director; and Lynn Thibodeaux, clerk of council. All were reappointments.
Hunter, who has discretion on who to bring before the council for appointment, said he never intended to replace these key positions.
“I’m certainly not going to be in a position to come in and not reappoint people that I think are doing a great job,” Hunter said. The council reappointed all three.
The council then voted to appoint a representative to the Chennault International Airport Authority after previous board member Jonald Walker III’s four-year term expired. The city can appoint two representatives to the board; one is still serving.
The council heard from two of the four applicants: Craig Marks and Rico Guillory. The other two — Eligha Guillory Jr., who ran for mayor against Hunter, and Walker, who was running for reappointment — did not attend.
Six of the seven council members voted for Rico Guillory, who owns a local construction business.
“Combined with some fresh energy, some fresh ideas, some new blood, I think we are going to make one heck of a team.”
-Nic Hunter, Mayor of Lake Charles