Should members of the LSU Board of Supervisors disclose who receives their scholarships?|
Story Archives: To his employees, Lazenby is a 'dad'
- 2013 - 845 articles
- 2012 - 1954 articles
- 2011 - 2029 articles
- 2010 - 2139 articles
- 2009 - 2066 articles
- 2008 - 1757 articles
- December 2008 - 146 articles
- November 2008 - 147 articles
- October 2008 - 232 articles
- September 2008 - 189 articles
- August 2008 - 126 articles
- July 2008 - 147 articles
- June 2008 - 111 articles
- May 2008 - 147 articles
- April 2008 - 141 articles
- March 2008 - 125 articles
- February 2008 - 135 articles
- January 2008 - 111 articles
- January 30th, 2008 (Wednesday) - 24 articles
- January 29th, 2008 (Tuesday) - 2 articles
- January 24th, 2008 (Thursday) - 6 articles
- January 23rd, 2008 (Wednesday) - 13 articles
- January 22nd, 2008 (Tuesday) - 2 articles
- January 21st, 2008 (Monday) - 1 articles
- January 18th, 2008 (Friday) - 1 articles
- January 17th, 2008 (Thursday) - 5 articles
- January 16th, 2008 (Wednesday) - 15 articles
- January 15th, 2008 (Tuesday) - 1 articles
- January 12th, 2008 (Saturday) - 1 articles
- January 10th, 2008 (Thursday) - 6 articles
- January 9th, 2008 (Wednesday) - 10 articles
- January 8th, 2008 (Tuesday) - 2 articles
- January 7th, 2008 (Monday) - 1 articles
- January 6th, 2008 (Sunday) - 1 articles
- January 4th, 2008 (Friday) - 2 articles
- January 3rd, 2008 (Thursday) - 4 articles
- January 2nd, 2008 (Wednesday) - 13 articles
- January 1st, 2008 (Tuesday) - 1 articles
|To his employees, Lazenby is a 'dad'|
When Rekha Mehendale's husband suffered a major stroke in 2007, she said her employer's response was typical of what she had come to expect from him.
"He told me, 'As long as this company exists, you have a job,'" said Mehendale, trying to hold back tears.
Mehendale has worked as a drafting technician for Jerry Lazenby, owner of Lazenby and Associates, a West Monroe engineering firm.
Though Mehendale's account of working for Lazenby was not the reason he recently was honored with the annual A. O. Evans Award by the West Monroe-West Ouachita Chamber of Commerce, it's an example of the kind of man Lazenby is, or the type of leader he is for his employees.
To be honored with the annual A.O. Evans Award, an individual must exhibit leadership.
To Mehendale and her coworkers, the award for leadership for Lazenby was an honor well deserved.
"Mr. Lazenby is a good mentor," said Mehendale. "He sets a good example for all of his employees and he's very forward-looking."
Another long-time employee, Justin Thornhill, said Lazenby works hard to foster a positive work environment for his employees.
"It's just a great place to work," Thornhill said. "We have a family atmosphere here."
Thornhill has worked as a consulting engineer at Lazenby and Associates for more than 15 years. That's a long time in a field known for competitive salaries and high-stakes competition.
It is also one of the reasons Lazenby said he has been able to grow the business each year since acquiring the company from his partner, Don Harrison, in 1990.
At that time, the company employed 15 people. Today, Lazenby said the company is home to more than 25 engineers, drafting technicians and support staff – many of whom have been there a decade or longer.
Lazenby said his employees come to work at the company and remain there because he strives to hire the best people he can.
"People are what our business is," Lazenby said. "If I haven't got the people who can do the work, then I can't grow."
And grow his business has.
Since taking over the firm in 1990, Lazenby said his team has steadily increased volume each year. In 2007, Lazenby and Associates will gross more than $3 million in government and private engineering projects.
Lazenby first came to West Monroe in 1974, after earning his degree at Louisiana Tech.
He went to work for Frank Jenkins and remained there until Harrison bought Jenkins out in 1981. Harrison in turn would leave the company in 1990, at which point it became Lazenby and Associates.
In the 17 years since, Lazenby and Associates has produced a number of notable talents.
Kay Price served as a surveyor and engineer until leaving the company in the late 1990s to work for the tax assessor's office. Today, Price serves as the economic development officer for Morehouse Parish.
Another Lazenby alum is local surveyor Tommy Semmes, who spent more than 10 years as a surveyor for Lazenby before starting his own land survey company.
When asked about competition, Lazenby said it plays an important part in the work they do.
"Competition is good," Lazenby said. "I don't look at them as enemies and try to get along with them all."
Competition makes a better product, he said.
"If someone else uses our survey it makes our survey stronger," Lazenby said. "Surveys are opinions and it means someone else is agreeing with my opinion."
But it is an opinion of another kind that keeps another longtime Lazenby employee in her job.
Carol Parker has occupied the office next door to Lazenby for 26 years, serving as secretary and treasurer for the company. In that time, Parker said she has come to appreciate Lazenby for his level head and careful consideration.
"He always encourages us to think matters through and not to act rashly or in anger," said Parker.
She said many of the employees have come to think of him as a father figure rather than a boss. It's a side of Lazenby often lost on his clients but never far from the minds of those who work for him.
"We often refer to him behind his back as 'Dad'," Parker said.