Vermilion Parish is ripe for investment and the board of Vermilion Economic Development Alliance is excited about the work they’re doing in all areas of the parish. To help provide vision and direction for the staff and programming is the organization’s 15-member board representing Vermilion Parish cities, towns, and government organizations as well as the Chamber of Commerce.

Ben Rivera serves as the Vermilion Chamber of Commerce representative.

When it comes to business issues and opportunities, Ben Rivera is a man who understands. As a student of UL Lafayette’s MBA Program and LIDEA’s Certified Economic Development Training, he has a deep understanding of the theory behind what VEDA does to improve the economy of Vermilion Parish. But as a local, well-respected insurance agent and former President of the Vermilion Chamber of Commerce, he also works intimately alongside the business community daily. Appointed to his second term as the chamber’s representative, Ben was once again elected to serve as VEDA’s President to help the organization execute a vision of celebrating the area’s unrivaled rural and cultural identities.

Ben grew up here in Vermilion and exemplifies the “joie de vivre” that this community is known for. To further his commitment to the parish and learn what it takes to lead, Ben enrolled and graduated from Vermilion’s inaugural Leadership Vermilion class and is an active alumnus, serving previously on the Steering Committee to strengthen the program and sustain its success. He volunteers both professionally and personally to help celebrate our uniqueness as a parish and the connection to our Cajun heritage.

“Ben has a way of seeing the big picture and understanding the complicated processes involved in making things happen,” comments Anne Falgout, Vermilion Economic Development Alliance’s Executive Director. “His presence demands respect because he is not the kind of guy who just talks about doing something, he always steps up to the challenge and isn’t afraid of doing the work. I’ve gotten good about answering the question, ‘how do we make this work?’ before he even asks, because as far as Ben is concerned, ‘no’ is not an option.” Ben’s undeniable passion for Vermilion will continue to shape the way VEDA gets involved and stays engaged, and the community is better for it. The board welcomes Ben to another term and looks forward to his continued guidance.

For more information about the Alliance, its board, and its plans for 2019, visit www.developvermilion.org.