Westlake settlement means state championship rings

Greg Fischer Editor-in-chief
EA Lady Spartans State Champions.

Judge Alvin Turner Jr. following a class action settlement from Westlake Chemical last year directed an award to East Ascension High School in the amount of $25,000 dollars.

Often with a class action lawsuit, some funds go towards a community betterment project, according to Public Information Officer Jackie Tisdell with Ascension Public Schools. In this case, EA falls into the service area of the settlement.

A small ceremony was held at EA on the morning of April 10. It featured not only Judge Turner and representatives from Westlkake, but also Principal Traci McCorckle, Superintendent David Alexander, and a coach from the EA Lady Spartans girls basketball team.

The last person is significant because the settlement means that the Lady Spartans will be awarded state championship rings with a portion of the $25,000 award.

"There was a community effort to help find money for the girls to have state championship rings," Tisdell said.

"Because of the tremendous community support that East Ascension High School has always had, I didn't have to call anybody," Principal Traci McCorckle said. "Judge Turner reached out to me . . . Judge Turner has been an advocate in the community for us for years and years."

"Of course I'm a '73 graduate of East Ascension High School, and of course my heart is here," Judge Turner said. "The fund came about as a result of some excess funds from some litigation that was in my court. East Ascension was in the area from members that were in that class. East Ascension is the high school that I thought best fit the use so far as those funds are concerned."

Over 20 girls will receive custom rings from Josten's from the funds that were awarded. The majority of the funds will go towards EA recreational facilities, which are also used by the community.

"This is a extremely important effort to help support East Ascension High School," Westlake Plant Manager John Scroggins said. "We really like hiring locally. Being able to spend money back within the community is so important building the base of the community that we pull from for feeding jobs."