Long live the King! Norris Babin Jr. named 2013 Orange KingAug 19th, 2013 | By Candace Griffin | Category: top story
We at The Gazette are proud to announce that one of our very own has been promoted to orange royalty. Norris Babin, co-owner of The Plaquemines Gazette, was named 2013 Orange King.
Babin, who runs the newspaper with 1998 Orange King and business partner Dale Benoit, is quite deserving of his new title, according to the King’s Committee.
“On occasion we’ve recognized businessmen… and on other occasions we’ve recognized individuals who have positively influenced the quality of life in our parish… so we believe that this gentleman falls into both of these categories,” said Judge Michael Kirby, 1983 King at the announcement ceremony.
Though Babin was born in New Orleans, he decided to make a name for himself in Plaquemines Parish. After attending college, Babin, Benoit, and a third partner Maurice Continé, founded the The Plaquemines Watchman, a journal that focused on human interest, school, and sports stories, unlike there competition at the time, the old Plaquemines Gazette. However, with a strange twist of fate in 1985, they were able to purchase The Gazette and its associated printing business, and turned it into the the thriving paper that it is today.
Babin also played a role in saving The St. Bernard Voice after it was severely impacted by Hurricane Katrina. The Gazette took over the printing responsibilities for The Voice and was eventually able to purchase the paper in 2006.
Babin still runs both The Plaquemines Gazette and The St. Bernard Voice, as well as Print All Inc. which was acquired in 1991. He is also active in the Louisiana Press Association.
He was appointed to the press association board of directors in 2006, and in 2012 was elected as president of the state association. He will server as LPA president until June 2014. Babin has also served on the board of directors of the Plaquemines Red Cross, and the Plaquemines United Way Advisory Board. He also has served as past chairman of many of the Orange Festival committees and is a past president of the organization.
“Norris has always been a good guy,” said former king Jimmy Cappiello. “We were happy to call him the new Orange King.”
“I’ve known Norris since he first chose to come to the Parish, said Kirby. “He’s always been loyal, honest, a straight shooter, and forward thinking—his genuinely sincere care and concern for our parish, its future, and its heritage, is beyond question and I am proud to announce him as this year’s Orange King.”
“I am extremely proud to represent a parish with such a diverse population, and bountiful businesses and industries,” said Babin. “I want to thank the Kings’ Committee for the confidence that they’ve shown in nominating me and all in the organization that voted for me.”
Babin is married to Melinda Sumich Babin, and is the proud father of Seth, Kimberly, and Samantha Babin.