New CEO for Baptist Community Ministries, New Hires at Baker Donelson, Obatala Sciences Choose Best Chief Scientist | Economic news

New Orleans

Margaux T. Dastugue and Ryan B. Gonzales we’re joining Donelson Baker as partners in the New Orleans office.

Dastugue focuses his practice in the areas of mergers and acquisitions, corporate planning, corporate governance, and general affairs and corporate affairs. Prior to joining Baker Donelson, she practiced in Washington, DC and London with an international law firm headquartered in London.

She earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Virginia and a law degree from Vanderbilt University School of Law.

Gonzales focuses his practice in the areas of mergers and acquisitions, finance, tax, corporate contracts and governance. Prior to joining Baker Donelson, Ryan worked as an in-house counsel at a Fortune 500 integrated energy company. Previously, he was a legal counsel for the U.S. Senate Finance Committee and a senior tax partner in the New York office of Ernst & Young. .

He graduated with honors with a bachelor’s and master’s degree in accounting from Tulane University. He earned his law degree from Loyola University New Orleans College of Law and a master’s degree in tax law from Georgetown University Law Center.

Cecile Sanchez was appointed chief scientific officer and vice president for research and development at Obatala Science.

Sanchez obtained his PhD in Strasbourg, France, working in the laboratory of Pierre Chambon, an international leader in transcriptional biology. She then moved to Tulane University in New Orleans for post-doctoral fellowships,

Sanchez then joined the pulmonary division of the Tulane Department of Medicine.

Obatala Sciences is a New Orleans biotechnology company focused on advancing tissue engineering and regenerative medicine.


Korey Patty was appointed regional delegate for economic competitiveness for The New Orleans BioInnovation Center.

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Patty will coordinate resources and facilitate collaboration within the South Louisiana life sciences industry in conjunction with the Gulf Coast Health Sciences Corridor.

Prior to joining the center, Patty served as executive director of Feeding Louisiana, the state association of Louisiana’s five Feeding America food banks. His experience also includes business and economic development for the State of Louisiana, as well as management, public policy and advocacy in a variety of industries.

He earned a bachelor’s degree in marketing from the University of Tulsa and a master’s degree in commerce from LSU.

The New Orleans BioInnovation Center is a private, not-for-profit business incubator that supports entrepreneurship and is dedicated to growing bioscience innovation throughout Louisiana.


Inman J. Houston was named CEO of Baptist Community Ministriesa faith-based Christian foundation serving greater New Orleans.

Houston is the ordained prime minister to lead the foundation. He has served as senior pastor of First Baptist Church in Lawrenceville, Georgia since early 2008.

Previously, Houston served for five years with First Baptist Church in New Orleans, ending as a global impact associate pastor and director of the Baptist Crossroads Project. Among other roles, he coordinated the response in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, which used nearly 10,000 volunteers to help more than 800 homeowners, and he helped launch the effort to rebuild what is now called Musicians’ Village.

He received a bachelor’s degree in management from the Georgia Institute of Technology. After graduating, he completed a nine-month internship at the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta. He went on to earn a master’s degree in theology of Christian thought and a master’s degree in theology from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary.

Red Stick

Denis Bluntpartner of Phelpslitigation, was appointed deputy managing partner of the Baton Rouge office.

Blunt will lead initiatives that will expand the company’s relationships with policymakers, industry leaders, nonprofits and other community influencers.

Blunt is used to leading projects and working with community partners to revitalize the Baton Rouge area. He has held leadership positions with the Baton Rouge Area Chamber, Louisiana Public Affairs Research Council, Capital Area Finance Authority, and 100 Black Men of Metro Baton Rouge.

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