Monday, June 17, 2024

And the finalists are…  The Business Person of the Year

by BIZ Magazine

Bethany Fouts

Bethany Fouts, a dedicated mother, Air Force spouse, and avid supporter of local businesses, relocated from Tennessee to Bossier Parish after obtaining a master’s degree in marketing. Beyond her professional pursuits, Bethany embraced the role of a foster and adoptive mom, extending her love and care to three siblings from the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe.

Balancing a family of six, including four adopted children, Bethany seamlessly transitioned back into the workforce, bringing her expertise to Locals Love Us as a successful sales and social media professional. Her passion lies in promoting and championing local businesses, a sentiment she actively instills in her children. Bethany’s determination, combined with her deep connection to Bossier Parish, fuels her tireless efforts in working for the betterment of the Shreveport-Bossier community she takes immense pride in being a part of.

Gregory Kallenberg

Gregory Kallenberg, currently holding the position of Founder and Executive Director of the Prize Foundation, stands as the esteemed recipient of the LEH Champion of Culture Award. His instrumental contributions to the Louisiana Film Prize and Prize Fest have not only transformed Shreveport-Bossier into a vibrant arts and culture hub but have also generated a remarkable positive economic impact of over $12 million for Northwest Louisiana.

In addition to his role as Founder and Executive Director of the Prize Foundation, Gregory is an acclaimed documentary filmmaker, celebrated for his work on projects such as “Rational Middle of Immigration,” providing insights into the complexities of immigration in America. His directorial portfolio extends to films like “The Long Game,” exploring energy development in West Texas, and the well-received “Haynesville: A Nation’s Hunt for an Energy Future.”

Having earned the prestigious title of “Champion of Culture” by the Louisiana Endowment of the Humanities in 2019, Gregory, with a background in journalism, exemplifies versatility and professionalism, leaving an indelible mark on the realms of film and culture. His multifaceted contributions underscore his commitment to making a lasting impact in these dynamic fields. (Business Person of the Year winner)

Loreli Lopez

Loreli Lopez, the proprietor of PPT, Inc., stands as a prominent figure in the concrete contracting landscape of Northwest Louisiana. Her success in the industry is matched by her noteworthy contributions to volunteer work, solidifying her as a respected community leader.

Loreli has been at the forefront of a scholarship program for several years, showcasing a profound commitment to supporting students in their academic pursuits. In 2023, her dedicated efforts bore fruit with the successful securing of a substantial $15,000 donation through HHA. This financial boost further reinforces her mission to empower students and facilitate the realization of their academic dreams.

Beyond her role as a business owner, Loreli’s leadership extends to actively participating in the reconstruction and construction projects of Northwest Louisiana through collaborative partnerships. Her influence as the owner of PPT, Inc. resonates far and wide, leaving a lasting positive impact on both her business and the Shreveport-Bossier community at large.

Christian Mudd

Christian Mudd, a dynamic entrepreneur at the youthful age of 28, serves as a Territory Manager at H&E Equipment Services, Inc. His entrepreneurial spirit shines through as he has successfully initiated four businesses since 2020. Collaborating with his wife Brittany and supported by their children, Christian launched Mudd & Kennon Development in 2020, focusing on the construction of commercial properties.

In 2021, he ventured into the retail sector with the establishment of Sterling Spirits, a flourishing liquor store in Haughton. Building on this success, Pine Ridge Investments was founded in 2022, further solidifying his presence in the commercial property development arena. Continuing his innovative journey, Sterling Spirits II was established in 2023 in Bossier, specializing in events and catering.

Beyond his commitment to business, Christian is deeply engaged in community service. He generously volunteers his time with the Dream Hunt Foundation and actively contributes to schools, sports programs, and various charitable endeavors. Christian’s dedication is evident in his meticulous time management, as he invests substantial hours into each project. His unwavering determination is a testament to his commitment to both the prosperity of his businesses and the well-being of the community.

Ashley Warner

Ashley Warner, the dedicated General Manager of Louisiana Boardwalk, is a consummate professional recognized for her unwavering commitment to both her professional role and the broader community. Her active involvement with the Tourist Bureau Board in Bossier and valuable contributions to the Bossier Chamber Board underscore her commitment to regional success and collaboration.

At the forefront of hosting numerous community events, Ashley has proven to be instrumental in attracting more people to the area. Her proactive leadership style has not only heightened the visibility of her business but has also significantly enriched the local community. Nominated for her exemplary contributions, Ashley Warner stands out for her active engagement in key local organizations, strategically hosting events that effectively promote both her business and the region. Her consistent pursuit of innovative ways to support and uplift the community showcases her as a driving force for positive change, contributing to the creation of a vibrant and thriving local environment. Ashley’s outstanding efforts make her a true testament to the transformative impact of dedicated leadership in both business and community development.

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