September 23, 2023
On September 23rd, Croatian President Zoran Milanovińá visited Plaquemines Parish to celebrate the opening of the new Croatian cultural center.
 
President Milanovińá was greeted by Lieutenant Governor Billy Nungesser who participated in a ribbon cutting and christening ceremony for the new Croatian House in Belle Chasse.
 
During the ceremony, the President of the Republic also presented certificates of Croatian citizenship to Honorary Consul of the Republic of Croatia in New Orleans, James Owen Coleman, and his wife Leah Monique Coleman.
 
Photo: Office of the President of Croatia
September 22, 2023
On Friday, September 22, 2023, the Louisiana Consular Corps welcomed Dr. Dritan Abazovic, Prime Minister of Montenegro, as its honored guest at a lunch meeting held at the Windsor Court Hotel.¬† After lunch in The Library, Dr. Abazovic spoke to 34 members of the Consular Corps and its guests, including Mr. Harrison Crabtree, Director of the World Trade Center of New Orleans, Special Agent Aileen Hart of the U.S. Department of State, and Drs. Dusty Porter and Agnieszka Nance representing Tulane University’s President, Dr. Michael Fitts.¬† Before lunch, Dr. Abazovic met with Louisiana Governor John Bel Ewards and First Lady Donna Edwards.¬† During his visit to New Orleans, Dr. Abazovic received honors and gifts from the Governor of the State of Louisiana, from the Mayor of the City of New Orleans, from Louisiana Lt. Governor William Nungesser, Tulane University President Dr. Michael Fitts, Tulane Professor Walter Issacson, and from the Hon. Dr. E. Quinn Peeper, Honorary Consul of the UK in New Orleans.¬† A group of Tulane University undergraduate and graduate students, accompanied by two Tulane professors also met with Dr. Abazovic in the Hotel’s The Palm Court.¬† The students presented Dr. Abazovic with a gift to thank him for the time which he spent with them.
 
L to R: Prime Minister Dr. Dritan Abazovic, the Hon. Bret A. Clesi, Honorary Consul-General of Albanian/Dean of the Consular Corps.
L to R: Dr. Dritan Abazovic, Tulane University Administrator Dr. Dusty Porter
Montenegrin Prime Minister Dr. Dritan Abazovic
L to R: Mentor Nazarko, Albanian political scientist, the Hon. Bret A. Clesi, Honorary Consul-General of Albania/Dean of the Consular Corps
L to R: Mark C. Romig, Honorary Consul-designee of Thailand, Dr. Dritan Abazovic
L to R: The Hon. Donna D. Fraiche, Honorary Consul of Japan, Mr. Clesi, Dr. Abazovic
L to R: Dr. Abazovic, Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards & First Lady Donna Edwards
September 20, 2023
The UK Foreign Minister for the Americas and the Caribbean, the Hon. David Rutley, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, visited Louisiana during the week of September 18, 2023 culminating in a reception in his honor at the home of the Hon. Dr. E. Quinn Peeper, Honorary Consul of the UK for Louisiana, and Mr. Michael Harold.  Members of the Executive Committee of the Louisiana Consular Corps attending the reception included:  the Hon. Bret A. Clesi, Honorary Consul-General of Albania and Dean, and Mrs. Clesi, the Hon. Cecilia Kjellgren, Honorary Consul of Sweden, and Dr. Kjellgren, the Hon.  James F. McKay, III, Honorary Consul of Ireland, and Mrs. McKay, the Hon. David P. Schulingkamp, Honorary Consul of Brazil, and the Hon. Greg J. Beuerman, Honorary Consul of Iceland, and Mrs. Beuerman.
(L to R) Mr. Michael Harold, City of New Orleans Councilman Eugen Green, UK Consul-General Richard Hyde, Mrs. Patrice B. Clesi, the Hon. Dr. E. Quinn Peeper, Minister David Rutley,UK Consulate-General Administrator Miss Elizabeth Bertram, and Honorary Consul-General Bret A. Clesi)
August 28, 2023

On August 28, the Louisiana Consular Corps held a meeting at the Windsor Court Hotel, with Ukrainian Consul-General Vitalii Tarasiuk and Consul Pavlo Moiseichenko.

Consul-General Vitalii Tarasiuk of Ukraine
Honorary Consul Edward Hayes, Consul-General Vitalii Tarasiuk, Consul Pavlo Moiseichenko, all representing Ukraine; Consular Corp Dean Bret Clesi, Honorary Consul General of Albania
JULY 14, 2023

On Friday, July 14th, members of the Louisiana Consular Corps attended the 2023 Bastille Day party at the Residence de France. The party was very well attended and also included the Francophone and Francophile communities, all guests of French Consul-General Nathalie Beras.¬† Members of the Consular Corps in attendance included:¬† the Hon. William H. Hines, Vice Dean and Honorary Consul of Portugal, the Hon. David P. Schulingkamp, Executive Committee Member and Honorary Consul of Brazil, the Hon. Conny Willems, Executive Committee Member and Honorary Consul of the Netherlands (ret.), the Hon. John F. Fay, Jr., Honorary Consul of Denmark, the Hon. Gary J. Mannina, Honorary Consul of Luxembourg, and the Hon. Susan E. Harper, Consul-General of Canada in Dallas.¬† On the occasion of Consul-General Beras’s announcement that she will leave New Orleans soon to return to the Foreign Ministry in Paris, Dean Clesi thanked Consul-General Beras on behalf of the Consular Corps for her many contributions to Louisiana, to New Orleans, and to her Consular Corps colleagues.

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JUNE 21, 2023

On 21 June 2023, French President and Mdme. Emmanuel Macron welcomed New Orleans native and multi-award winning musician and composer Jon Batiste, and world class New Orleans-based jazz legends Herlin Riley, Mitchell Player, and Mahmoud Chouki to the President’s official residence in Paris, the Elys√©e Palace, to celebrate the Fete de la Musique.¬† President and Mdme. Macron also welcomed Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards and First Lady Edwards to the Elys√©e as part of Governor Edwards’s economic development trip to France.¬†

Pictured (l ‚Äď r):¬† French Consul-General in Louisiana, the Hon. Nathalie Beras, Mr. Jon Batiste, First Lady Donna Edwards, and Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards
Pictured (l ‚Äď r):¬† Herlin Riley, Gregory Porter,¬†French President Emmanuel Macron, First Lady Donna Edwards, and Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards,¬†Jon Batiste, James Andrews and New Orleans Jazz Museum Director, Greg Lambousy
Pictured (l ‚Äď r):¬† French President Emmanuel Macron, Mdme. Macron
JUNE 1, 2023

On June 1, the Honorable Masahiko Mitsumoto, Deputy Consul-General of Japan in Nashville, and Miss Sumire Matsuda, Researcher/Advisor at the Consulate-General of Japan in Nashville, visited Louisiana and met with Honorary Consul of Japan Donna D. Fraiche and with Consular Corps Dean Bret Clesi after visits with the Mayor of Baton Rouge, with state Senators, and with other officials.

To conclude their visit to Louisiana, Deputy Consul-General Mitsumoto presented¬†Honorary Consul Donna D. Fraiche her¬†appointment for another five years as the Honorary Consul of Japan to Louisiana during a lunch at Commander’s Palace which was also attended by the President of the Japan Society in New Orleans.

Deputy Consul-General Mitsumoto, Honorary Consul Donna D. Fraiche, and Dean of the Louisiana Consular Corps and Honorary Consul-General of Albania to Louisiana Bret Clesi, in the offices of the Consulate-General of Albania in New Orleans.
MAY 23, 2023

On May 23, a new joint initiative was launched ‚Äď the Onshore Wind Platform¬†relationship with the Country of Denmark!

Honorary Consul of Denmark in New Orleans, John Fay participated in the signing of a ‘New initiative to foster knowledge sharing between Danish onshore wind energy companies in North America’.

We are very excited to collaborate with the country of Denmark and Danish Wind Export and look forward to facilitating future partnerships and activities within the Onshore Wind Platform.

“GNO, Inc. partnered with The Trade Council of Denmark in North America – Energy and Environment and the Danish Wind Export Association to host an offshore wind supplier exchange between local companies and the 30-company offshore wind delegation the Danish agencies brought to New Orleans in conjunction with American Clean Power Association (ACP) CLEANPOWER this week.

After conducting presentations on their respective offshore wind services, and a guest presentation from Claire Richer on the IRA, company representatives discussed opportunities for collaboration and co-investment with local partners at Gallier Hall. The event concluded with an LOI signing between the Trade Council and DWEA to develop a new program designed to support Danish energy companies with U.S. FDI.”

MAY 12, 2023

On May 12, there was a meeting between Irish Ambassador Geraldine Byrne Nason, Consul-General Hull, Consul James F. McKay, III & Gov. John Bel Edwards.

Louisiana has strong cultural ties to Ireland and they discussed ways they can work together to grow their respective economies and create jobs.
MAY 12, 2023
On May 12, Ms. Gao of the Quebec Government met with Hon. Consul General Beras to discuss their collaborations on the Francophonie of the Americas.
 
There will be an opening ceremony of the Summer University program that the Quebec government supports in collaboration with the University of Louisiana at Lafayette and the Centre de la francophone des Ameriques.
 

Informations pour les participant(e)s de l’Universit√© d’√©t√© 2023 | Centre de la francophonie des Am√©riques (francophoniedesameriques.com)¬†¬†¬†

Ms. Xin Gao Chief Representative of the Quebec Government for Louisiana, and Natalie Beras Consul General of France. 
MAY 11, 2023

On May 11, Her Excellency Geraldine Byrne Nason, Irish Ambassador to the U.S., and Irish Consul-General in Texas Robert Hull visited New Orleans to dedicate Hibernia Park, the site of the 19th¬†century New Basin Canal where thousands of Irish immigrants died digging the canal.¬† Now filled in as the neutral ground on Pontchartrain Boulevard and marked by a large, granite Celtic cross, Ambassador Nason recalled the pivotal role of the Irish in New Orleans’s history.¬† She was honored by the local Irish community¬†at a spirited dinner at Antoine’s hosted by Honorary Consul of Ireland Judge James F. McKay, III.¬†

Pictured (r ‚Äď l): Mrs. Clesi, Consular Corps Dean and Honorary Consul-General of Albania the Hon. Bret A. Clesi, the Hon. Nathalie Beras, Consul-General of France to Louisiana, Ambassador Nason, Honorary Consul McKay, Mrs. McKay, Consul-General Hull.
MAY 11, 2023
On May 11, The Consular Corps and the WTCNO had the pleasure of welcoming Geraldine Byrne Nason, Ambassador of Ireland to the United States.
 
The Irish Ambassador to the U.S., H.E. Geraldine Byrne Nason was speaking at the LIT Conference, and talked about the upcoming trade mission to Ireland next month. The Ambassador  accompanied President Biden on his visit to Ireland in mid-April.
From Left: Consul General at the Consulate of Ireland Robert Hull, Director at New Orleans World Trade Center, Harrison Crabtree, Ambassador of Ireland Geraldine Byrne Nason, and Honorary Consul of Finland and CEO of GNO, Inc., Michael Hecht.

First thing on the agenda at the LIT Conference was; The Protocol of International Business Development 

Louisiana continuously ranks as a top state for FDI. Industry leaders discussed the protocol of international business development, the intersection with the international leadership community and the importance of governmental leadership and participation.
 
Moderator
Michael Hecht¬†‚Äď President and CEO, Greater New Orleans, Inc.
 
Panelists
Hon. Bret Clesi¬†‚Äď Louisiana Consular Corps Dean and Honorary Consul of Albania
Hon. Donna Fraiche¬†‚Äď Honorary Consul of Japan
Larry Collins¬†‚Äď Executive Director, Louisiana Office of International Commerce
Xin Gao¬†‚Äď Chief Representative of the Quebec Government for Texas, Louisiana, Oklahoma and Arkansas
May 6, 2023

To celebrate the coronation of King Charles III in London on the same day, His Britannic Majesty’s Honorary Consul in New Orleans, the Hon. Dr. E. Quinn Peeper, hosted the Coronation Cup Regatta and luncheon at the Pass Christian Yacht Club, Mississippi, on Saturday, May 6th, 2023.¬†Approximately 150 guests attended the luncheon, including several Members of the Louisiana Consular Corps:¬† the Hon. Patricia Denechaud, Honorary Consul of Canada (Ret.), the Hon. Philip Lorio, Honorary Consul of Austria (Ret.), the Hon. Martin Pospisil, Honorary Consul of the Czech Republic, and Mrs. Pospisil, the Hon. Walter Wolf, Honorary Consul of Latvia, the Hon. Bret Clesi, Honorary Consul-General of Albania and Dean of the Consular Corps, and Mrs. Clesi, and Honorary Consul Peeper and Mr. Michael Harold.¬† The regatta featured vintage sailing vessels (pictured below) from throughout the U.S.¬† At the conclusion of the regatta, Honorary Consul Peeper presented an inscribed, Sterling trophy cup to the winning Captain.¬†The “Coronation Cup” will remain on permanent display at the Pass Christian Yacht Club.¬† In his remarks at the luncheon, Dean Clesi reminded the guests of the very close historic ties between New Orleans and Pass Christian over the past three centuries, much of which owing to sailing.

(r ‚Äď l): Dean Bret Clesi and Honorary Consul Quinn Peeper speaking at the Coronation Cup Regatta luncheon.
Honorary Consul Peeper also presented awards to luncheon guests for "Best Hat", and "Best Table Decoration".
APRIL 18, 2023

On April 18, 2023, the Consul General of France, the Hon. Natalie Beras, hosted a reception at the Residence de France honoring the New Orleans Jazz Orchestra.

The Grammy Award-winning New Orleans Jazz Orchestra big band calls the New Orleans Jazz Market its home. It is the only stand-alone facility built specifically for Jazz in New Orleans. They performed at the Tahiti Jazz Festival last Fall, which also happens to be the place that Consul General Beras spent 10 years of her childhood.

Members of the Louisiana Consular Corps in attendance were, in addition to Consul General Beras, the Hon. Cecilia Kjellgren (Sweden), the Hon. Roland Vandenweghe (Belgium), the Hon. Susanne Veters Cooper (Germany), the Hon. Nancy Marinovic (Mali), the Hon. Walter Wolf (Latvia), and the Hon. Thomas Westfeldt (Sweden ‚Äď Ret.)

APRIL 14, 2023

At the Louisiana Consular Corps’s April 14, 2023 meeting, we welcomed four official guests:¬† Slovakian Ambassador to Washington, DC, H.E. Radovan Javorcik, Slovakian Consul in the Washington, DC Embassy, the Hon. Viktor Valla, Executive Director of the World Trade Center of New Orleans, Mr. Harrison Crabtree, and Special Agent Aileen Hart of the U.S. Department of State Office of Diplomatic Security. The Slovakian delegation was hosted in Louisiana by the Slovakian Honorary Consul in Louisiana, the Hon. Dr. Zoltan Gombos. Twenty-six other Members of the Consular Corps attended the meeting culminating in a presentation and Q&A on current world affairs by Ambassador Javorcik.

APRIL 4, 2023

On Tuesday, April 4, 2023, Louisiana Consular Corps Members Estefania Cheng (Panama), Bret Clesi (Albania), Donna Fraiche (Japan), Cesar Lurati (Uruguay), Gary Mannina (Luxembourg), Tito Morales (Mexico), Robert Romero (Philippines), and Walter Wolf (Latvia), attended the presentation by U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman at the Southern Food and Beverage Museum. The Executive Director of the Museum and the Deputy Secretary of State both welcomed and honored the Louisiana Consular Corps in their remarks at the event.

Pictured from left:  Honorary Consul Walter Wolf, Honorary Consul-General Bret Clesi, Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman, Honorary Consul Robert Romero, Honorary Consul Donna Fraiche, and Honorary Consul Cesar Lurati. 
Pictured from left: the Hon. Bret A. Clesi, His Excellency Ambassador Ibrahim Toure'

On April 4, 2023, a delegation from the Cote¬†d’Ivoire Embassy in Washington, DC visited New Orleans to explore opportunities between that country and Louisiana.¬† As Dean of the Louisiana Consular Corps, the Hon. Bret A. Clesi welcomed His Excellency Ibrahima Toure’, Ambassador of the Cote d’Ivoire to Washington, DC, and his staff to Louisiana and discussed business opportunities in Louisiana and ways in which the Consular Corps could be of assistance to the Cote d’Ivoire.¬†

MARCH 29, 2023
On March 29th a small private dinner party was held¬†at Arnaud’s, with the Belgian Consul-General, the Hon. Michel Gerebtzoff, who presented the Knight’s decoration of the Order of Leopold II to Honorary Consul Roland Vandenweghe, in the name of King Phillipe of the Belgians.¬† Earlier, Roland received his brevet from H.E. Ambassador Jean-Arthur Regibeau at the Belgium Embassy in Washington.¬†
 
The dinner guests included Roland, the Ambassador, the Consul-General, Flanders Trade Representative Nathalie Mathys, Wallonia Trade Representative Yves Dubus, Hon. Bret A. Clesi (Albania), Hon. Deidre C. McGlinchey (The Netherlands), Hon. Nathalie Beras (France), Hon. Cecilia Kjellgren (Sweden), and Hon. Eddy Hayes (Ukraine).
MARCH 1, 2023

Louisiana Consular Corps Elects New Board Leadership

FEBRUARY 20, 2023
On February 20, Louisiana Consular Corps participated at the 2023 Rex Lundi Gras celebration at Spanish Plaza in New Orleans.
Robert Romero, Honorary Consul of The Philippines, Maria Isabel Page, Honorary Consul of Spain, Cesar Lurati, Honorary Consul of Uruguay, Quinn Peeper, Honorary Consul of Great Britain, Bret Clesi, Honorary Consul General of Albania and Dean of the Louisiana Consular Corps, Walter Wolf, Honorary Consul of Latvia, Joanne Mantis, Honorary Consul of Cyprus.
Robert Romero, Honorary Consul of The Philippines, Maria Isabel Page, Honorary Consul of Spain, Cesar Lurati, Honorary Consul of Uruguay, Quinn Peeper, Honorary Consul of Great Britain, Bret Clesi, Honorary Consul General of Albania and Dean of the Louisiana Consular Corps, Walter Wolf, Honorary Consul of Latvia, Joanne Mantis, Honorary Consul of Cyprus.
Alana Harris, Deputy Director of Arts and Culture, Robert Romero, Honorary Consul of The Philippines, Cesar Lurati, Honorary Consul of Uruguay, Maria Isabel Page, Honorary Consul of Spain,
Alana Harris, Deputy Director of Arts and Culture, Robert Romero, Honorary Consul of The Philippines, Cesar Lurati, Honorary Consul of Uruguay, Maria Isabel Page, Honorary Consul of Spain,
Hon. Cesar Lurati, Honorary Consul of Uruguay, Hon. Joanne Mantis, Honorary Consul of Cypress, Her Excellency Mariangela Zappia, Italian Ambassador to the U.S., His Excellency the Mexican Ambassador (retired), Hon. Maria Isabel Page, Honorary Consul of Spain
Hon. Cesar Lurati, Honorary Consul of Uruguay, Hon. Joanne Mantis, Honorary Consul of Cypress, Her Excellency Mariangela Zappia, Italian Ambassador to the U.S., His Excellency the Mexican Ambassador (retired), Hon. Maria Isabel Page, Honorary Consul of Spain
JANUARY 31, 2023
On January 31, 2023, the Louisiana Consular Corps held their Annual Meeting at the Windsor Court. Thank you to our speakers and to Dean Clesi and the board for organizing a very informative meeting.
Dean Bret Clesi introducing Gary Carroll, Special Agent, US Department of State Diplomatic Security Services
Dean Bret Clesi introducing Gary Carroll, Special Agent, US Department of State Diplomatic Security Services
IMG_0379
Harrison Crabtree (R), Executive Director, World Trade Center, and Michael Hecht (L), Honorary Consul of Finland and CEO of Greater New Orleans, Inc.
Harrison Crabtree (R), Executive Director, World Trade Center, and Michael Hecht (L), Honorary Consul of Finland and CEO of Greater New Orleans, Inc.