St. John The Baptist Parish News Release

Entrepreneurs Graduate from FastTrac Program

Entrepreneurs Graduate from FastTrac Program

Monday, December 5, 2016

St. John the Baptist Parish – On Monday, November 28, fifteen participants graduated from the fall 2016 Kauffman Foundation FastTrac Entrepreneurial Training Program. The award winning program is offered through the St. John Business Training Center and is housed at the South Central Louisiana (SCL) Technical College, River Parishes Campus.  

President Natalie Robottom and Chief Administrative Officer Laverne Toombs joined Jerry Jones, Economic Development Director, Peggy Joseph, Economic Development Committee Chairman, Diane Sclafani, Consultant, Louisiana Small Business Development Center (LSBDC) Greater New Orleans and Bayou Region, Wayne Aucoin, Business Continuity Consultant and Penelope Freeman, Campus Dean, South Central Louisiana Technical College River Parishes Campus, for the graduation ceremony.  “I am excited that the graduates took advantage of the information, experience, and resources provided to help make their businesses successful.  Although the classes are ending, I encourage the graduates to continue to access the services and resources offered through the Business Training Center, the Economic Development Department and the online FastTrac Toolkit," Parish President Natalie Robottom said.  She added, “St. John Parish will continue to work with our partners to implement programs that help our small businesses.”

Following the presentation of certificates, graduates, family and friends networked and socialized with FastTrac alumni and staff.  The FastTrac program includes ten sessions of approximately 40-50 hours of training over ten weeks. Each session includes facilitated activities and group discussions on multiple business topics; a guest speaker related to each topic; networking; coaching sessions; and wrap up and action steps. Throughout the program, participants are provided assistance with business plans, business and financial skills and tools with strategies for immediate implementation.  Participants are eligible to apply for funding assistance and business loans and have access to a program workbook and online FastTrac toolkit for life.  

Sessions were led by Wayne Aucoin with assistance from Jimmy Nguyen. The program is funded in part through a Cooperative Endeavor Agreement with St. John the Baptist Parish Economic Development, Louisiana Economic Development-Small and Emerging Business Development (SEBD) Program, Louisiana Small Business Development Center (LSBDC), and the South Central Louisiana Technical College, River Parishes Campus (SCL). Class participants were only responsible for $100 of the program fee.    For more information or to apply, please contact the St. John Parish Business Training Center at 985-479-1247 or through email at

Fall 2016 Graduates

Bertrand Bailey - Down Home Creole Cookin’

Ann Harvey - Ann Harvey & Associates

Joy Banner - Reel River Road

Jamaal Israel - Jamaal Israel Enterprises

Ciara Carter-Rhodes - Nurse Audit Consultants

Rena Jackson - RJbrushes Make Up Studio

Robin Corradi - Young Rembrandt                                                                
Juanita Jasmin-Dorsey - Dial-A-Maid

Lorraine Edwards-Vigne - Star Gate Communications, LLC

Keiondra Markey - Lacra Iriane Catering

Del-Rio Gardner - Divine Intervention Publishing

Annette Porter - D N A Unique Event Planner

Robert Gray - Insanity Kustomz, LLC                                                             
Dexter & Shelly Ruffin - DRPhotography

Gaynelle Smith - RomanceTheScent