THIBODAUX, La. — The Nicholls Alumni Federation celebrated the achievements of Nicholls alumni and supporters during the annual Awards for Excellence reception on Wednesday.
Thibodaux attorney Leslie Clement Jr. received the James Lynn Powell Award, restaurateur Neal Swanner the Harvey Peltier Award, the Mary and Al Danos Foundation received the Corporate Mark of Honor and Andrea Bollinger the Honorary Alumni Award.
“It is an honor for me to be able to recognize the people who contributed so much to this institution, which means so much to our community,” said Katherine Mabile, director of Alumni Affairs. “Nicholls is growing as an institution and the passion and commitment from each of these men and women has played a part in that. I can’t thank them enough.”
Clement (B.A. ‘70) is a former Student Government Association president, Mr. Nicholls and business manager for The Nicholls Worth. The James Lynn Powell Outstanding Alumni Award is the highest recognition given to a Nicholls graduate. Elected into the Nicholls Hall of Fame in 1970, Clement is a season ticket holder for multiple sports and has served on the Alumni Federation Board, Nicholls Foundation Board and the Colonel Athletic Association Board. He has operated his law office since 1978.
Owner and operator of Bubba’s II Po-boys and Seafood, Swanner has long supported Nicholls individually and through the Norman Swanner Foundation, which honors the memory of his brother and former Thibodaux city councilman. A scholarship has been set up in his brother’s name and the Nicholls softball team plays on Swanner field after he donated a significant amount of money to renovate the complex. The Harvey Peltier Award is given annually to an outstanding supporter of the university. It is the highest honor a non-graduate can receive from Nicholls.
Mary and Al Danos were longtime supporters of the arts at Nicholls, and the foundation that shares their name has continued their legacy. Operated by the Danos children, the foundation has given more than $1 million in support of the Mary and Al Danos Theater in Talbot Hall and to the success of music and theater programs on campus. It’s that support that led Nicholls President Dr. Jay Clune to select them to receive the Corporate Mark of Honor.
Though she didn’t graduate from Nicholls, Bollinger is a passionate supporter of the university. She served as a member of the Mary and Al Danos Theater Design and Funding Committee, and has recently donated time and money to Women’s Night Out and Give-N-Day. She and her siblings, Boysie and Charlotte, donated the first $1 million endowment in Nicholls history, and last year she joined her sister in raising money to renovate the Cotillion Ballroom in the Student Union.
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