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HALL OF FAME

Vandebilt Catholic Hall of Fame Induction 2018-2019

On Thursday, May 30, 2019, Vandebilt Catholic High School inducted two new members into its Hall of Fame.  Judge Randall Bethancourt and Mr. Martin Folse were inducted during a ceremony held at HTV Studios in Houma.

Judge Randall Bethancourt

Judge Randall Bethancourt was born and raised in Houma, Louisiana. His Vandebilt journey began in 1965 after finishing 6th grade at St. Francis Elementary. He attended Vandebilt and was a member of the only class to attend grades 7 through 12, graduating in 1971. In his senior year, he was elected to the Spirit Court at the Winter Formal dance, and voted Most Dependable by his classmates. He attended Nicholls State University, and then was a seminarian at St. Joseph Seminary College.  He graduated from Louisiana State University in 1975 with a Bachelor of Science degree.  From 1976 to 1977 he returned to Vandebilt Catholic as a history, religion, and humanities teacher.  He has served on the Vandebilt Catholic School Advisory Council since 2010, and presently serves as Chairman. 

He obtained his Juris Doctor from Loyola University College of Law in 1979. He practiced law in Houma for 22 years, focusing primarily on litigation.  As an Assistant District Attorney, he was the founding director of the Terrebonne Children’s Advocacy Center.  He was a former vice president of the Terrebonne Bar Association.  He was elected as a state district court judge for the 32nd Judicial District Court, Terrebonne Parish, Houma, Louisiana, and took office on January 1, 2003.  He was reelected without opposition in 2009 and again in 2015.

As a judge, he served on multiple law-related committees, including, but not limited to, the Louisiana State Bar Association’s Continuing Legal Education Committee, the Louisiana District Judges Association Committee on Judicial Education, and the Louisiana District Judges Association Judges in the Classroom Committee.  He was a 2011 graduate of the inaugural class of the Louisiana Judicial Leadership Institute, sponsored by the Louisiana Supreme Court.

Judge Bethancourt has received numerous awards throughout his life, such as the Public Official of the Year award by the Louisiana Chapter of the National Association of Social Workers in 1999, Terrebonne Parish Bar Association Community Service award in 2008, and CASA’s Judge of the Year award for the state of Louisiana in 2011.  He was named Vandebilt Catholic’s Alumnus of the Year in 2004. 

He reached a new milestone when he was honored with the Judge Benjamin Jones Judges in the Classroom Award by the Louisiana Center for Law and Civic Education (2016), having been only the second recipient of this most prestigious award, and was selected from more than 350 judges in the state of Louisiana, including Supreme Court Justices, Appellate Court Judges, and District Court Judges.  Judge Bethancourt’s courtroom is an educational mecca, and he has had over 18,000 students participate in his Judge in the Classroom program.

His wife of 38 years, Adrienne, holds a PhD in nursing and has been practicing and teaching for 38 years.  She is currently a graduate nursing professor at Loyola University in New Orleans.  Their daughter Brooke followed in her father’s footsteps as a Vandebilt student and currently studies English at LSU.  Judge Bethancourt enjoys reading James Patterson novels, traveling, and making elaborate rosaries by hand. 

When asked how his faith education at Vandebilt Catholic has taught him to live, he responded, “My Vandebilt experience taught me to live with Faith, Hope, and Charity in all aspects of life:  with God and His church; with family; and in my chosen vocation. I also learned to take ownership of all that I do in life.  To this day, I feel that Vandebilt is MY school, and I proudly own that.  When I was a student at Vandebilt it seemed that everyone lived by this, from the Principal on down to the school maintenance engineer.  By taking ownership you tend to take care of it, nurture it, and want it to thrive.  Also, Vandebilt taught me to hold myself to the highest standards of excellence, to be relentlessly loyal, and to be a person who acts with integrity in EVERY situation.  I am proud to be an alumnus of an institution that taught me the lessons in faith to work towards being the best person I can be.”

As current Vandebilt Catholic Consultative School board chairman, Judge Bethancourt remains an active member of the school community by substitute teaching social studies classes, attending Close-Up in Washington, D.C., and inviting students to his courtroom annually to learn about the judicial system. His leadership and dedication are still recognized in the halls of Vandebilt Catholic each year.

Mr. Martin Folse

Mr. Martin Folse was born in Thibodaux, Louisiana. His family moved to Houma when Mr. Folse was two years old. He attended St. Francis de Sales Elementary School before beginning high school at Vandebilt Catholic in 1974. While at Vandebilt, Mr. Folse played football, basketball, baseball and participated in the high jump and triple jump for the track team. As an athlete, Mr. Folse broke several records in both football and track and field. In his senior year, he was honored as Terrier of the Year, Prom King and voted Wittiest by his senior classmates. He was also awarded the Bishop Shexnayder Award.

After graduating from Vandebilt in 1978, Mr. Folse was offered scholarships to Arkansas of the Ozarks and USL in Lafayette for track and field. He opted to attend LSU, but soon decided that he would find a home at Nicholls State University, where the broadcast journalism department was one of the coveted programs in the state at the time and he could focus on his studies.

Mr. Folse always had an entrepreneurial spirit. When he was 10, he began to cut neighborhood yards and was able to earn enough money to purchase his first super 8 movie camera for a little over 55 dollars. Mr. Folse attributes his mother and father, Lorraine and the late Eugene for instilling work ethic in him and his five siblings. He graduated from Nicholls in broadcast journalism and has been recognized by the University as one of the top success stories in his field.

In 1984, he wrote and released a full length motion picture at the age of 24 about a swamp creature in the marshes of South Louisiana, entitled Nutria Man.  His trip to California to market the movie proved successful.  Nutria Man was sold to New World Pictures in 1984 and was re-released as Terror in the Swamp. At 25 Mr. Folse started a TV station called HTV, which has grown from a one man operation to a well respected TV station that thrives on local information for Houma, Louisiana and the surrounding areas.

During his broadcasting career, now 33 years strong, Mr. Folse has produced over 20,000 programs for the local area. He has covered every tropical storm and hurricane since 1985’s Hurricane Juan. He has spoken to people from the U.S. Senate leaders to the 100 year old lady having a birthday. He loves showcasing people and what they have accomplished. He has performed interviews with Chris Berman of ESPN, Joe Montana, Archie Manning, Drew Brees, as well as Coach O and Bobby Hebert, who is a perennial host on HTV’s segment, Sports on the Bayou. Mr. Folse and his station were also honored recently with a Telly award for the station’s short documentary on the touching story of two special needs athletes at a Lafayette School.

Aside from his TV station, Mr. Folse has always had a passion for music and songwriting. He travelled to Nashville in 2004 to team up with a couple other songwriters and started a corporation to showcase musical songwriting talent. The group has produced over a dozen programs entitled “Write On.” One of Mr. Folse’s original songs, called “Time for Action” was broadcast to a worldwide audience after Hurricane’s Katrina and Rita. To date, Mr. Folse has written over 150 songs and continues to perform with the band, Canebreakers.

Mr. Folse has earned many accolades over the years for his contributions to his community, including Vandebilt Catholic Alumnus of the Year in 2003, Woodman of the World’s “Man of the Year” in 2005, and he was inducted into the inaugural Tri-Parish Hall of Fame in 2008. He has been an advocate to a number of causes including veteran support, local school facility improvements including Vandebilt Catholic, and levee protection.

Mr. Folse credits Vandebilt Catholic for their excellent educators and strict disciplinarians, who all had an impact on his life. When asked, Mr. Folse recalled Father Donovan, for a lesson in humility after a practical joke backfired, Coach Gerald Albert, for finding outlets for his endless amount of energy, Coach Jack Becker for his example of hard work and dedication, Judge Randy Bethancourt for furthering his zeal for ancestry, and Mr. Smiley Lasseigne, custodian, for soothing a curiosity for how things worked.

His dedication to Vandebilt Catholic dates back to the early 80s, when he began following the girls softball team on a 112 win streak while enrolled at Nicholls. Of all the footage that HTV now possesses, Mr. Folse has more footage on the Vandebilt girls softball team than any other subject matter.  He has followed the careers of both Louisiana Hall of fame Coach Gerald Albert and soon to be National Hall of Fame Coach Margaret Haydel Johnson.  Mr. Folse continues to grow his station and to write songs in hopes of more success in this area. He also has a profound love of the area from which he lives and hopes to continue to give back to the communities around him. Mr. Folse is a dedicated alumnus who has always used his platform to educate, advertise and promote the accomplishments and causes of Vandebilt Catholic.

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Hall of Fame

Past Inductees

 

Honorees must be deserving long-time supporters, faculty, staff, alumni, parents, or others who have served Vandebilt faithfully and well. Up to four individuals may be chosen each year.  Decisions are rendered by a committee of administrators, faculty, and alumni.

 

1977-78

Mr. Gerald Albert

Brother Casimir, S.C.

Ms. Tracy Duplantis

Sister Mary Fabian, M.S.C.

Mr. Stephen Kenney, Jr.

Mr. Ellis LaRose

Mr. Lucas “Buddy” Marcello

Mr. Conrad Picou, Sr.

Mr. Eugene Robichaux

Father August Vandebilt

 

1978-79

Bishop Maurice Schexnayder

Sister Mary of St. Lua, M.S.C.

 

1979-80

Brother Alfred Kolb, S.C.

Mr. Ben Landry

 

1980-81

Sister Mary Theo Noel, M.S.C.

Brother Bernard Tunney, S.C.

 

1981-82

Sister Kateri Battaglia, M.S.C.

 

1982-83

Judge J. Louis Watkins, Jr.

 

1983-84

Sister Margaret Paul Breaux, M.S.C.

 

1984-85

Mr. David Keife

 

1985-86

Ms. Ruth H. Robichaux

 

1994-95

Mr. James J. Buquet, Jr.

Mrs. Beverly Cazayoux

Mr. Albert Lasseigne

Brother Donald McGrath, S.C

 

1995-96

Mr. Robert Acosta 

Mrs. Imelda Acosta

Mr. Gerald Collins

Brother Gaspar Rodrigue, S.C.

 

1996-97

Mrs. Irma Colasurdo

Mrs. June Forshag

Mr. Lloyd Morgan

Mr. John Wiemann

 

1997-98

Brother Eldon Crifasi, S.C.

Brother Carl Evans, S.C.

Dr. Richard M. Haydel

Mr. Jeff Laque, Jr.

 

1998-99

Mr. Jack Becker

Mr. Michael X. St. Martin

Mr. Carroll Toups

Mrs. Theresa “Trub” Toups

 

1999-2000

Mr. Albert “Sugar” Guidry

Ms. JoAnn Hebert

Dr. Brian Matherne

Mr. Frank Poretto, Sr.

 

2000-01

Dr. Garland P. Aycock, Jr.

Mr. James Goodwin

Sister Immaculata Paisant, M.S.C.

 

 2001-02

Mr. Claude Bergeron

Mrs. Bess Evans

Father Patrick O’Brien

 

2003-04

Mr. A.J. Dagate

Mr. Ray Marcello

 

2004-05

 Dr. Sep Hymel

Mrs. Deanna Martin

Mr. Jerry Martin

 

2005-06

Mr. L.G. Gautreaux, III

 

2006-07

Mrs. Emily Elmore

Mr. Pete Lambert

 

2007-08

Dr. Allen Ellender

Mr. Luigi Vegas

 

2008-09

Mrs. Brenda Felger

Mr. Wm. Clifford Smith

 

2009-10

Brother Ray Kuhn, S.C.

Mr. Gary J. Labat, Sr.

 

2010-11

Mr. Donald Banowetz, Sr.

Mr. Calvin Buxton

 

2011-12

Mrs. Angelique T. Barker

Mr. Thomas Chauvin

 

2012-13

Mr. Terry P. Braud

Mrs. Margaret Haydel Johnson

 

2016-17

Mrs. Pat Bourg Boquet

Mrs. Dianne Mader Savoie

 

2017-18

Dr. William St. Martin

Mr. Gary Phillips

 

2018-19

Judge Randall Bethancourt

Mr. Martin Folse

 

Advancement Office:
 Betsy Breerwood
Betsy Breerwood
Annual Giving and Major Events Director

Details
(985) 876-2551
 Doug Hamilton '87
Doug Hamilton '87
Advancement and Alumni Relations Director
Assistant Girls Soccer, Assistant Bowling

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(985) 876-2551
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