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Sunday, January 22, 2017
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Panelist Bio


Sherri McConnell
Executive Director of Louisiana Entertainment

Sherri McConnell serves as Executive Director of Louisiana Entertainment, a division of Louisiana Economic Development. Her office administers the highly successful tax incentive programs for film, music, digital interactive media, and live performance.

Born in Beirut, Lebanon of American parents, Ms. McConnell traveled the world until settling in Louisiana in 1978, where she attended LSU and began a career in governmental relations as a consultant and association manager with the Bud Mapes Firm. In 1982 she started her own firm, continuing to represent clients before the Louisiana Legislature and related governmental agencies.

Since joining LED in January of 2007 she has used her 25-plus years of experience in Louisiana governmental and political affairs, organization management, marketing and economic development, and her passion for the creative industries, to grow one of Louisiana’s greatest natural resources and supercharge Louisiana’s Entertainment industry. Her guidance has led to industry activity in the state expanding exponentially when measured by activity in the Entertainment office. For example, Louisiana Entertainment received more applications for motion picture tax credits alone in 2010 than in the first five years of the program combined. As a result of this acceleration, the office expanded from three to twelve people (still only half the size of most states’ but shouldering twice the workload). Louisiana Entertainment now serves as the major conduit for entertainment business development in Louisiana.

Sherri spearheaded development of a long-range strategic plan to build a permanent entertainment economy in Louisiana that capitalizes on the state’s native creative culture and provides sustainable, well-paid jobs in both above-the-line and below-the-line segments of the industry. Under her leadership, Louisiana’s entertainment industry has grown to its current stature, contributing approximately $1.5 billion to the state’s economy between 2008 and 2010. The state continues to hold a leadership position in attracting new entertainment economic development projects.

Current Topic


01/17 - Healthy New Year!

What is the best approach to shedding pounds in a state where cuisine is part of its culture?

PARTICIPATE BY TAKING THE SURVEY HERE!

January heralds the beginning of a New Year and for many, a resolution to practice a healthier lifestyle. According to the 13th annual State of Obesity report, Louisiana now has the highest rate of adult obesity in the country.

So, what is the best approach to shedding pounds in a state where cuisine is part of its culture? Which diet is the most effective for losing weight? What weight loss surgeries are available and how safe are they? And what role does exercise play in the health equation? Louisiana Public Square searches for answers on “Healthy New Year!” Wednesday, January 25 at 7pm on LPB HD and in New Orleans on WLAE. (Recording Tuesday, January 24)

Do you have a story of weight loss challenges and success that you want to share? Be a part of our audience when we record “Healthy New Year!” on Tuesday, January 24 at 7 p.m. at LPB. Email your contact information to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Seating is limited, so reply soon!




Our panelists are:
• Drake Bellanger, M.D., Weight Loss Surgical Centers of Louisiana
• Catherine Champagne, Ph.D. , Pennington Biomedical Research Center
• Stephanie Elwood, Southern University AgCenter
• Rudy Macklin, Governor’s Council on Physical Fitness & Sports


LPB CEO, Beth Courtney and family physician and author, Dr. Rani Whitfield, moderate the discussion.


Louisiana Public Square can also be heard on public radio stations WRKF in Baton Rouge; Red River Radio in Shreveport and Monroe; and WWNO in New Orleans. Check the station websites for schedules.



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Sunday, January 22, 2017
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