The 2009 Young Leadership Council Role Model Gala on August 15 brought together 26 upstanding citizens to represent this year’s theme: “Do You Know What It Means to BE New Orleans?” The black-tie dinner of 700-plus guests was held in the Sheraton’s Grand Ballroom. Melanie Hebert of WDSU was the emcee and an invocation was delivered by former YLC Role Model Sr. Anthony Barczycowski, D.C. of the Archdiocese of New Orleans. A presentation followed dinner with a video introducing all of the Role Models. Funky times were had by all as the dance floor beckoned with music from the Bucktown Allstars.

The 1,200 plus volunteers, 25 board members and four employees that make up the nonprofit YLC are surely role models as well with all the work that they do for the community through various projects. Honored this year at the gala were the Role Models Brian Bordainick, Rachel Breunlin, Ronald V. Burns, Karl J. Connor, Darlene Cusanza, Tommy Cvitanovich, Lucas Diaz, R. Allen Eskew, Billy Fitzgerald, John Georges, Abram Shalom Himelstein, Don C. Hubbard, Jack C. Jensen, Lesley Jernigan, Karyn Noles Kearney, Peggy Scott Laborde, H. Merritt Lane, Ellen M. Lee, Robert C. McIntyre, Kira Orange Jones, Andre Montel Perry, Jackie Silverman, Kurt Weigle, Madeline West, Tim Williamson and Louis A. Wilson.