SPONSORED: Legatus In Louisiana

The intersection of faith and the workplace can be a challenge to navigate. And yet, there is an undeniable way that faith and values inform how leaders lead. The juncture of faith and professional leadership has inspired leaders like Tyron Picard of The Picard Group to find a home in Legatus.

Picard is president and a charter member of the Lafayette-Acadiana Legatus chapter, the organization that gathers Catholic CEO’s with the mission of having them model and inspire Catholic values to their employees.

Founded by devout Catholic business owner Tom Monaghan (founder of Domino’s Pizza, once owner of the Detroit Tigers), Legatus, which means “ambassador”, brings CEO’s together in 50 chapters across the United States.

“It struck Monaghan that the Catholic Church should have an organization that brought together Catholic CEO’s to support each other and proliferate Catholic and Christian values in their businesses. He went to Rome and asked Pope John Paul II’s permission,” Picard said.

The organization founded in 1987 now has five chapters in Louisiana. “In 2014, we chartered the largest chapter in the history of Legatus, here in Lafayette, with 49 couples,” Picard said. “We are now the fourth largest chapter in the Legatus family."

He added, “Legatus is a tremendous part of my life for a couple of reasons. One is it affords real direction on how we run our businesses, and the values and the virtues we convey to employees and clients. Additionally, its allowed me to build strong relationships with other CEOs and their spouses. And the third, is the ability to understand more about the history and origins of Catholic Church, as well as interact with the current leaders of the church ranging from Bishops to Cardinals."

The Legatus ideal of modeling behavior in the workplace has already had the desired results in Picard’s life.

“Since I have become involved in Legatus, I have had one employee convert to Catholicism, and a business associate express that I assist him in doing the same. Neither were people that I evangelized “or lobbied about Catholicism. They simply saw what it meant in my life, and became interested in joining the Church."

Legatus gatherings take place once a month with mass, speakers and a meal while annual trips are sprinkled throughout the year including a women’s group who head to Mexico City each year for the Our Lady of Guadalupe pilgrimage and an opportunity for an annual trip to the Vatican along with an annual summit in the States.

An annual “Summit” of all Chapters takes please every January in Florida, where national political, business and media personalities, along with member of the clergy, provide lectures on many topics confronted by modern day CEO’s.

Legatus has also had the effect of forging business and personal friendships.

“I know a couple of Legatus members who have become business partners, and a number of us – from different chapters— have become social friends outside of Legatus, and travel together as well as attend sporting events together” Picard said. “Legatus has been one of the most rewarding things I have ever been involved in and being president this year is a real honor. The service aspect of Legatus elevates the whole experience, serving the cause tends to yield more benefit to the server than the server gives,” Picard commented. As the Bible says, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.”

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