OUT TO LUNCH finds Baton Rouge Business Report Editor Stephanie Riegel combining her hard news journalist skills and food background: conducting business over lunch. Baton Rouge has long had a storied history of politics being conducted over meals, now the Capital Region has an equivalent culinary home for business: Mansur’s. Each week Stephanie holds court over lunch at Mansur’s and invites members of the Baton Rouge business community to join her. You can also hear the show on WRKF 89.3FM.
In 2011, Mary Patricia Wray was a young law student at Loyola University Law School in New Orleans. Just three short years later, she found herself serving as the communications director for a longshot candidate in the Governor’s Race, a democratic state Representative from Amite named John Bel Edwards. You know what happened next: Edwards made the runoff and went on to beat his Republican challenger David Vitter and become the only Democratic governor in the dark red deep south.
Mary Patricia Wray, who goes by M.P., was instantly thrust into the spotlight of state media and today M.P.’s political consulting firm, Top Drawer Strategies, represents clients on a variety of policy fronts, at all levels of government.
Jill Rigby Garner is a different kind of consultant. Jill's focus is not on electing people to office, but teaching them how to be nicer. Jill is founder and Executive Director of Manners of the Heart, a nonprofit organization that teaches kids about manners and how to treat one another. The organization has its roots in the volunteer work Jill did back in the 1990s. In 1999, Jill wrote the Manners of the Heart curriculum and in 2002 founded the nonprofit with a vision to restore respect and civility in society. Today, Jill leads her organization to equip schools, encourage families and engage in local communities to help children see beyond their circumstances to live up to their full potential.
Photos over lunch at Mansurs on the Boulevard.