THIBODAUX, LA — The South Louisiana Economic Council (SLEC) announces Laci P. Melancon as Program Coordinator for the Coastal Technical Assistance Center (CTAC). CTAC was established in 2019 to assist Louisiana-based companies prepare and obtain contracts related to coastal restoration and protection projects. The program is funded by Louisiana Economic Development (LED) and the Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority (CPRA) and is currently housed and managed at SLEC.
“CPRA is bringing billions of dollars to the fight to restore our land and protect our people. And that investment translates into major opportunities for local businesses and jobs for Louisiana’s residents,” said CPRA Board Chairman Chip Kline. “We welcome Laci Melancon to this opportunity to lead CTAC in leveraging our coastal investment into more jobs, more investment, and more opportunities for a greater future for South Louisiana and its people.”
“The Coastal Technical Assistance Center will connect the great project opportunities available for Louisiana companies and Louisiana workers so they can get involved in our water management and coastal restoration projects,” Louisiana Economic Development Secretary Don Pierson said. “LED wants Louisiana to benefit not only from the project improvement outcomes, but also as an important economic development initiative for Louisiana’s coastal region. Going forward, Laci P. Melancon will bring full-time focus to supporting this effort as CTAC’s program coordinator.”
In her new role as Program Coordinator, Laci will be tasked with assisting Louisiana small businesses in being contract ready for opportunities related to projects in the water management sector. Laci will work with prime contractors, through CTAC, to align them with qualified subcontractors. CTAC’s main goal is to increase the amount of coastal dollars awarded to in-state businesses.
The organization will work in collaboration with key stakeholders throughout the state to ensure the implementation and success of CTAC. Local community colleges and universities will be engaged to ensure that educational and training opportunities align with the state’s coastal employment needs.
Prior to her role with CTAC, Laci held executive level positions in higher education, technical operations, and the non-profit sector.
“We are excited to welcome Laci and CTAC to the SLEC offices. With a successful history of incubating initiative driven non-profit organizations, we are eager to assist CTAC in its development and deployment, and to witness the many benefits the organization will provide to our state,” said Vic Lafont, President and CEO of SLEC.
As a native of coastal Louisiana, Laci’s close connection to the coast is a driving force behind her commitment to the program stating, “Growing up in South Louisiana and thinking back to some of my earliest childhood memories, I am reminded of living ‘on the water.’ When I saw this opportunity, I felt this was a perfect fit not only in the fulfillment of running a newly created organization, but also as something that is very personal to me — this is the place I call home.”
While her position is new, Laci is already looking ahead, “I look forward to the day we can speak of the successes of clients who utilized CTAC and its network for opportunities, education, and the mentors we provide. That day will not only be a win for CTAC, but also for the state of Louisiana,” said Laci.