Rotary Club of Slidell awarded the Ken Thompson Legacy Award, the Bill Lowry Service Above Self Award, and the 2023 Rotarian of the Year.

The following recipients were presented with their awards at the Installation Luncheon on Friday, June 16, 2023.  An explanation of the awards follows.

Don Bryan, Ken Thompson Legacy Award
Cindy Alberts, Bill Lowry Service Above Self Award
Kenny Breaux, 2023 Rotarian of Year
The Ken Thompson Legacy Award is given to individuals who have demonstrated a substantial commitment for service over the years to the Rotary Club of Slidell and to the community. It is an award that isn’t given every year but reserved for those people who have accomplished great things over and over.
Donald Bryan has been a member of Rotary for over twenty-five years. He has served in every position in the club with the exception of Treasurer. Regardless of his position, he was always available to step up when there was an unanticipated need whether it was to fill in as a speaker who did not show up or to lend a willing ear to someone who might be in crisis. For every position he fills, he takes it to a higher level with his grace, kindness, humility and intelligence. For years he has provided meeting space for Rotary Leadership Training sessions for the entire District.  He has lent his van as transportation for International Rotarians who come to visit. He has provided a conference room for board meetings. Donald is generous and unassuming. He shares all that he has year after year, personifying the Rotary motto “Service Above Self”.
The community and the Rotary Club is proud and honored to award Donald Bryan the Ken Thompson Legacy Award for his distinguished service. Donald Bryan is a man who has made a profound impact on our world with his goodness and determination.
The Bill Lowry Service Above Self award is named after a founding member of The Rotary Club of Slidell who was known for his kindness and civic involvement. In his honor, this award is presented to a person who typifies a servant leader and enriches life in the community by identifying a need and actively engaging others to develop solutions.
Cindy Alberts is a prime example of a person who is thoughtful, humble and steadfast about turning her dreams into reality.   About a decade ago, Cindy noticed that widows seemed to lack a supportive environment. She even started keeping a list of widows she knew and thought about starting an organization for widows. Sadly, three years ago, Cindy lost her husband and found herself grieving. Although supported by family and friends, she yearned to affiliate with those who had experienced loss. Feeling lonely and sad, Cindy decided to act upon her idea. She enlisted the support of Aldersgate Methodist Church and opened the first Widows Club in St. Tammany. Her first meeting yielded 40 interested women.  They met regularly with progressive programs, socials, interest, hobby groups as well as travel groups. It blossomed and three years later, the active membership is around one hundred and seventy women who embrace a renewed life. Rotary Club of Slidell salutes the ingenuity, courage and persistence of Cindy Alberts who humbly used her own experience of loss and crafted a safe haven for celebration, joy and support for widows in our community.
Kenny Breaux, a retired planning supervisor of ExxonMobil and PBF Energy, was awarded the Rotarian of the Year award for his exceptional dedication and performance during the 2022-2023 year.  A member of the Rotary Club of Slidell for six years, Kenny has quietly and consistently contributed to the club in a manner that is congruent with the tenants of the Rotary Four Way Test. The Four-Way test is used by Rotarians internationally as a moral code for personal and business relationships. The following code can be applied to almost any aspect of life.

Of the things we think, say or do:

1.    Is it the truth?
2.    Is it fair to all concerned?
3.    Will it promote good will and better friendships?
4.    Will it be beneficial to all concerned?

During Kenny’s years in Rotary, he has personified the ethics of the Four Way Test. He started with voluntary work on Rotary projects and grew in his depth of involvement by chairing community service for two years and serving as a board member for two years. He has also served on the Board of Rotary's annual Slidell Heritage Festival for the past 6 years handling all Beverages.

Kenny has been instrumental this year in helping the club recover from the challenges of COVID. He has been diligent in finding new approaches to these challenges. A gifted problem solver, Kenny listens carefully, and lays out a plan which is logistically sound. His manner is always to give others the credit, the encouragement and the follow-through to make things happen. A grateful Rotary Club of Slidell proudly awards Kenny Breaux Rotarian of the Year. He is indeed a person who does the right things for the right reasons.

Several District officers were in attendance at the event, including District Governor Vicky Gutierrez. Jim Pagones played the song “We are the Rotary” composed by Greg Barnhill and himself as the 4-Way Test.