Sue Soileau Durand has been chosen as a laureate in Junior Achievement of Acadiana's 21st annual Business Hall of Fame.
Durand is a native of Washington, Louisiana and a graduate of the Academy of Sacred Heart and the University of Louisiana at Lafayette.
She was a Louisiana Licensed Real Estate Broker from 1982 until 2009. She is the president/CEO and chairman of the board of Washington State Bank and has been a member of the Board of Directors since 1983.
Her business and community involvement is extensive. She has served as a Commissioner of St. Landry Parish Economic Industrial Development District for more than 25 years, and served as the Chairman of the Commission from 1999 until 2011.
Durand serves as the Louisiana representative on the American Bankers Association Community Bankers Council Administrative Committee. She is a member of the Committee of 100 for Economic Development Inc. and has served as Chairman of the Opelousas/St. Landry Chamber of Commerce.
Her community involvement ranges from leadership roles in Rotary Club, the St. Landry Chamber of Commerce, One Acadiana, the Committee of 100, and the St. Landry Economic Development Council.
Durand is a recipient of the Athena Award, presented annually by Chambers of Commerce, women’s organizations and universities to women who demonstrate excellence in their professions. She is a 2010 recipient of Acadiana Business Magazine’s (ABIZ) Women Who Mean Business Award.
She was also named the Rotarian of the Year in 2003 and the Opelousas/St. Landry Chamber Business Person of the Year for 2001 and 2005.
Her philanthropy is focused on supporting youth, education and those less fortunate than herself. As such, Washington State Bank sponsors youth programs offered by the Town of Washington and St. Landry Parish Sheriff Guidroz, such as Cops for Kids.
For the last three years, Washington State Bank has awarded two scholarships annually to finance students at South Louisiana Community College. Additionally, the bank has been a corporate sponsor for Acadiana Outreach Shelter and the perennial sponsor of the Catfish Festival, The Boy Scouts of America Distinguished Citizen Banquets, Father Glenn Meaux’s Hobanal Haiti Mission and many other annual events.
She was recently married to Paul Arthur Durand, president of St. Martin Bank, and is the mother of two children and one granddaughter.
Sue and other inductees will be recognized May 1 at 6 p.m. in the Atchafalaya Grand Ballroom in the University of Louisiana at Lafayette Student Union.
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