2017 Alumna of the Year
Yvonne LaFleur has been named the 2017 Alumna of the Year of Cabrini High School.
The internationally acclaimed fashion designer graduated from the historic high school in 1965 and matriculated to Louisiana State University where she earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Fashion Merchandising. Following her graduation she began her career in design and merchandising that spans more than 40 years.
At 22 years old and directly out of college, she opened a retail store in what is her location today. Her store specialized in jeans hand-altered to fit perfectly. Today she is chief executive officer of Yvonne LaFleur/New Orleans and predecessor companies. That small boutique now is known around the world as a shop fitting women's fashion needs including lingerie, dresses, hats, a legendary bridal department, and a signature fragrance line. Everything Yvonne LaFleur is rich in timeless style and quality.
But she has accomplished her climb to the top of an extremely competitive business with compassion and grace. She has been quoted as saying that her mother told her to "Think best and be best." She recalls that she graduated from Cabrini High School "where I was taught by the Missionary Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus (the religious order founded by Saint Francis Xavier Cabrini). They were very family oriented, but they were also very strict," she has been quoted. "The words 'can't' and 'forgot' were not in their vocabulary." She carries that education with her today as her shopping bags and store decor are covered with violets, the flower associated with Mother Cabrini.
Her career has brought her accolades such as the Amita award for business; the Small Business Association award; New Orleans Magazine Fashion Gala Honoree, and more.
Her fashions can be seen at high-end events around the world including Mardi Gras reviewing stands and in motion pictures. Her gowns and her hats are renowned for their style and taste.
She is married and the mother of seven children. In naming her Alumna of the Year, it was said:
"In everything she does, both in her personal life, as well as her professional life, Yvonne continues to exemplify excellence, service, leadership, and respect. She is a Christian, kindhearted woman and serves her family, the Cabrini community, and the community at large. She is a strong, Catholic, successful, yet humble, woman who has proven herself as a role model and a wonderful representative of Cabrini High School and its ideals and mission."
Past Alumna of the Year Recipients:
|1997 Florence Wingerter ’71
||2008 Madeline Suer ’71|
|1998 Yvonne Hrapmann ’76||2009 Maria Bienes ’82|
|1999 Karen Ursin ’73||2010 Natalie Tatje ’81|
|2000 Fay Rice ’65||2011 Cynthia Pazos ’76|
|2001 Maria-Kay Chetta ’73||2012 Patricia Eilertsen ’67|
|2002 Victoria Trinchard ’65||2013 Mary Ellen Wheelahan ’72|
|2003 Dawnell Sands ’69||2014 Nadine LeBlanc Pizer '76|
|2004 Anna Brocato ’74||2015 Peggy Scott Laborde '71|
|2005 Jane Bartlett ’70||2016 Michelle Bertram Douglas'86|
|2006 Janice Dean ’70||2017 Yvonne LaFleur'65|
|2007 Marianne Beary ’72|
Every year we honor an outstanding Cabrini Alumna. We seek nominations for a Cabrini graduate who has exemplified the teachings of Mother Cabrini; someone who has shown dedication to Christianity through her interaction with her family, the Cabrini community, and the general community. To be considered for the Alumna of the Year Award, an individual must meet the following criteria:
- Must demonstrate a serious Christian faith and a continued support of Christian community.
- Must be distinguished among her peers for constructive contributions made to society that display leadership, responsibility, and expertise in her field of endeavor.
- Must have record of community involvement.
- Must be a person of integrity and demonstrated ability who bring dignity and inspiration to the faculty, staff, students, alumnae, and friends of Cabrini High School.
- Must have demonstrated continuing interest in and support of Cabrini through contribution of time, talent, or resources.
- Must be an individual whose deeds reflect the importance of her Cabrini education.
- Must uphold the standards of Cabrini High School.
Nominations must include your contact information, the contact information of the nominee, a detailed description of the nominee's accomplishments, and the actions that support the above mentioned requirements.
For 2018 Alumna of the Year please send your nominations in by December 31, 2017 to:
Alumna of the Year Committee
1400 Moss St. New Orleans, LA 70119