Alumnus of the Year

The Vandebilt Catholic Alumnus of the Year award was founded to honor those with outstanding achievements, accomplishments, service and/or dedication to the school.  In 2022, the school adopted a new nomination and selection process to further preserve, strengthen, and honor Vandebilt Catholic.  The hope is that those selected as alumnus/a of the year will provide current students, staff, and community members with positive examples of the best that Vandebilt Catholic has to offer.

The Alumnus of the Year Award is given to a St. Francis de Sales High School, Houma Central Catholic High, or Vandebilt Catholic High School graduate who, through their outstanding achievements in their spiritual, professional, and civic life, have brought honor to themselves and Vandebilt Catholic, and whose contributions have had a broad and positive impact on others.

Nominations for the 2023 Alumnus of the Year will be open soon.


2022 Alumni of the Year

On June 3, 2022, during the VCHS President's Banquet, Dr. David '78 and Mrs. Laura Lapeyre Fakier '78 were honored as our 2022 Alumni of the Year.

Dr. David and Mrs. Laura Lapeyre Fakier are both graduates of the Vandebilt Catholic class of 1978. After high school, both attended Louisiana State University, where Laura graduated in Medical Technology. After undergrad, David went to LSU Medical School in Shreveport and graduated in 1986. They married and moved to Connecticut in July of 1986. David completed his radiology residency and they moved back to Houma in July 1990, where David began working in the radiology department at Terrebonne General Medical Center.

 David and Laura had three children: Edward, Mark, and Rebecca. Their daughter, Rebecca passed away in 2003 at just eight years old from neuroblastoma. Edward and Mark both attended St. Bernadette Elementary and graduated from Vandebilt Catholic High School in 2009 and 2011. David and Laura have remained active at both St. Bernadette and VCHS for many years. 

In 2009, the family made their first mission trip to Haiti during Easter break. The trip was life changing and both David and Laura have been committed to Haiti Mission, Inc. (HMI) and the community that is served near Jeremie, Haiti ever since.  They have served for 13 years as co-chairs of the Bec’s Annual Haiti Mission Silent Auction, in honor of their daughter Rebecca and have raised over 1.2 million dollars. All money raised is utilized to support home building, currently employing 70 Haitian men and building four homes per month.

Their passion for this mission grew each year and in 2011 David and Laura began leading mission groups to Haiti, trying to make a minimum of three trips a year. Since 2009, HMI has been able to take more than 100 teenagers to Haiti, a number of which are VCHS graduates. This June, they will lead their twenty-seventh group to Haiti which will include eight VCHS alumni. 

Since moving to New Orleans, David and Laura have become active in Our Lady of the Rosary Parish. They will make their third mission trip with members of the parish in November 2022.  They also have become a marriage prep mentor couple for the parish and David currently serves as the Pastoral Council President.

 After 32 years of practice in Radiology, David plans to retire at the end of June, which should provide some extra time for additional mission trips each year for both he and Laura.

David and Laura epitomizes the qualities that a Catholic educational institution strives to instill in its students. They serve as a role model for young people, demonstrating ways that a Vandebilt graduate can make a difference in this world.  Vandebilt Catholic High School is extremely proud to add to the accolades of David and Laura Fakier the distinction of Alumni of the Year 2022. 

Alum of the Year - Past Recipients

1977   Mr. Conrad Picou, Jr. ’60 2002    Mrs. Shirley Rome Watkins ’45
1978    Mr. David Keife ’67 2003    Mr. Leslie Daigle ’53
1979    Mr. Peter Broussard ’60 2004    Judge Randy Bethancourt ’71
1980    Dr. Bobby Haydel ’57              Mr. Ken Watkins ’47
1981    Mr. Ray Marcello ’40 2005   Dr. Ann Barker ’55
1982    Mr. Ronnie Haydel ’54 2006    Fr. Jay Baker ’79
1983    Mr. Lou Gehrig Burnett ’59 2007    Dr. Leo Hebert ’58
1984    Mr. John Schoonenberg ’68 2008    Mrs. Alexis and Mr. Berwick Duval ’73
1985    Dr. Dickey Haydel ’61 2009    Dr. John “Jay” Clune ’82
1991   Sr. Fatima Robichaux, MSC ’47 2010    Rev. Glenn LeCompte ’76
1992    Judge J. Louis Watkins, Jr. ’45 2011    Dr. Michelle Simon ’82
1993    Mr. Martin Folse ’78 2012    Mrs. Phyllis Peoples ’80
1994    Dr. Walter Benoit Comeaux, Jr. ’39 2013    Mrs. Laurie Calhoun Robichaux ’84
1995    Dr. Connie Lirette Casente, RN ’58 2014    Mr. Philip “Phe” McMahon ’83
1996    Ms. Leslie Johnson Van Osdale ’56 2015    Father André Melancon ’02
1997    Rev. Msgr. Philip Whitney ’39 2016    Mr. Robért LeBlanc ‘95
1998    Ms. Glenny Lee Castagnos Buquet ’54 2017    Sister Renee Daigle '81
1999    Mr. Eddie Pullaro ’61 2018    Mrs. Kerry Clune Diebold '86
2000    Ms. Tracy Duplantis ’23 2019    Mr. Steven Crispino '84
2001    Ms. Marian Hamilton ’72 2020    Brother Barry Landry S.C. '83
  2021    Mr. Logan "Hank" Babin, III '88
  2022    Dr. David Fakier '78 & Mrs. Laura Fakier '78