Matassa: Hello-Goodbye

Leslie D. Rose
City of Gonzales Mayor Barney Arceneaux presented Kenny Matassa, Parish President-elect with an appreciation award for his 19 years as a City of Gonzales Councilman.

     In just less than two weeks, Kenny Matassa will assume his role as Ascension Parish President. The new job, of course, forced him to bid goodbye to his 19 year role as City Councilman in Gonzales.

     In a tearful speech, Matassa accepted an appreciation award and kind remarks from Mayor Barney Arceneaux, and other members of the Council at the regular meeting held on Dec. 14.

     As sentiments were shared, it was Gonzales Police Chief Sherman Jackson, normally quiet throughout the meetings, who spoke of the most sentimental remarks.

      “[Kenny] was always there,” Jackson said. “Even though we went through some hard times as a city – financial-wise and anything else, he was able to find a way to create that synergy amongst the council. Congratulations, Kenny, I appreciate you – you were always a good friend, and I know my dad is in Heaven smiling down on you – he was a big fan of yours.” 

     Mayor Arceneaux presented Matassa with an award, coupled with more kind remarks.

     “We certainly do appreciate everything, no doubt about it,” Arceneaux said. “You’ve been a leader in the community and you will continue to be a leader. You’ve been a good friend, you’ve been a good councilman, and there’s no doubt in my mind that you’ll be a wonderful parish president.”

     Fighting back his emotions as much as possible, Matassa addressed the mayor, members of council and meeting attendees with appreciation.

     “It’s been a good ride, but it’s not over yet,” a tearful Matassa said.

      Matassa served 19 years as a City of Gonzales councilman from 1997 to 2015. He will officially take office as Ascension Parish President on Jan. 4, 2016.