On the Move

Steven Hebert named CEO of Billeaud Companies

by Leslie Turk

Longtime Coldwell Banker exec replaces retiring CEO Tex Plumley

Billeaud Companies is this week providing details about the addition of longtime Coldwell Banker Pelican Real Estate Chief Operating Officer Steven Hebert to the Broussard-based development firm.

ABiz reported last week that Hebert was departing Coldwell for a new position at Billeaud Companies, but at the time the century-old Broussard entity was not ready to discuss details about the new hire because it had not yet informed its entire staff.

This week Billeaud Companies confirms that Hebert is replacing Tex Plumley, its longtime chief executive officer who is transitioning into retirement. The transition period will allow Hebert to learn from Plumley’s almost 30-year career with the residential, industrial and retail development firm before officially taking the reigns as the company’s top executive.

“Tex has provided decades of leadership as Billeaud Companies has grown and established itself as one of South Louisiana’s largest office, retail, multifamily and land development firms," Chuck Billeaud, chairman of the Board of Billeaud Companies, says in a press release. “His work has left a mark on the city of Broussard, Acadiana and most importantly, our company shareholders."

Billeaud Companies is a family-owned business with 175 family shareholders.

Before 1979, the company was chiefly focused on agricultural pursuits but has since expanded to include about 1 million square feet of commercial space and a range of real estate holdings. Since Plumley joined the firm in 1986, Billeaud Companies has diversified its portfolio, having successfully developed industrial parks and recruited major companies such as Walmart and Home Depot to develop land in the Broussard area. Read more about the company in this May 2014 ABiz profile.

In addition to his involvement with Billeaud Companies, Plumley has served in leadership roles and on the boards of the Lafayette Economic Development Authority (past chair), Ducks Unlimited (past state chair and life sponsor), the Expressway Commission, the Broussard Economic Development Corporation (chair) and Louisiana Certified Capital.

Hebert takes over the top exec spot at Billeaud Companies after serving as COO of Coldwell Banker Pelican since 2001. He has been in real estate and construction all of his life and has extensive experience in residential and commercial real estate, construction and property management. Hebert was recently appointed by Gov. Bobby Jindal to the Louisiana Real Estate Commission, is active in the Realtor Association of Acadiana, was the Realtor of the Year in 1996 and last year received the Lloyd G. Smith Lifetime Achievement Award.

“I am honored to be working with a family in which I have deep respect and have known my entire life,” Hebert says in the release. “Billeaud Companies is and has been integral to the economic growth of our area and I am committed to ensure that legacy of growth continues."

Hebert, who is best known for conducting in-depth research on the local real estate market for Coldwell (much like Bill Bacque does for market leader Van Eaton & Romero), tells ABiz that research function will likely stay with Coldwell.

“While Hebert will certainly be missed, the management team that remains in place at Coldwell Banker Pelican, including Broker/Owner Steve Thomson, Commercial Division Manager Ken Simeral, Real Estate Coach Hope Kidder and Operations Manager Liz Guidry, holds decades of real estate experience to continue the company’s smooth operations,” the company said in a written statement issued last week.

“The prospect of a new leader with a passion for real estate and innovative ideas who will lead the company into the next chapter of growth is exciting,” owner Thomson adds. “We wish Steven well in his future endeavors.”

The firm is searching for a new COO and expects to make an announcement about Hebert’s replacement in the coming weeks.