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Stephen Toups, President of Turner Industries Group, to Give Keynote Address at SOWELA Fall Commencement


Lake Charles, Louisiana – December 12, 2019

Mr. Stephen Toups, President of Turner Industries Group, is the guest speaker for the 51st commencement ceremony Monday, December 16, beginning at 6:30 p.m. in the Lake Charles Civic Center Coliseum.

Mr. Toups serves as the chairman of Louisiana’s Community and Technical College System (LCTCS) and has been with Turner Industries Group for more than 20 years serving in many capacities. Turner Industries is a national industrial contractor. Turner employees build, maintain, and service the nation’s sizeable industrial sector helping make the life we live possible by supporting the companies that produce fuel, energy, and products essential to our daily existence. Since 1961, Turner has steadily worked to provide one solution for clients’ success.

Mr. Toups currently serves on the board of SingleStop USA, the Rice Global Engineering & Construction Forum, and as a trustee for the National Center for Construction Education Research. Past service includes the national board of directors for the Associated Builders and Contractors, chairman for the Louisiana Construction Education Foundation, as a board member for the LCTCS Foundation Board of Directors, and as chairman of the Baton Rouge Area Workforce Investment Board. Mr. Toups is a graduate of Louisiana State University, where he earned his Bachelor of Science in Finance and his Master’s in Business Administration. He currently serves on the Information Systems and Decision Sciences Advisory Council for the LSU Business School.

Approximately 250 students are eligible to graduate and receive degrees or diplomas or participate as completers in the Workforce Solutions programs.

Graduation includes the United States Marine Corps conducting a Presentation of Colors and Ms. Latricia Thierry singing the National Anthem. Mr. Stephen Toups, Louisiana Community and Technical College System Board of Supervisors Chair, will serve as the commencement speaker.

Two SOWELA alumni members will participate in this year’s ceremony: Ms. Chasity Ware Bishop, a 2003 graduate, and Mr. Jake Philmon, a 1972 graduate.

SOWELA’s commencement ceremony is open to the public. For information, contact SOWELA at (337) 421-6902.

About SOWELA Technical Community College

SOWELA Technical Community College provides traditional, distance, and lifelong learning experiences and awards associate degrees, technical diplomas, and certificates. The College empowers learners in career and technical education and enables transfer students to pursue a four-year degree so all learners excel as globally competitive citizens. The College has been educating the region’s workforce for 80 years and has locations in Jennings, Lake Charles and Oakdale, LA. For more information, visit www.sowela.edu.