The Independent Staff

A shoe in? Florsheim named LITE chief

Louisiana Immersive Technologies Enterprise today named Henry Florsheim as its new chief executive officer. Florsheim has served as interim CEO since November 2008.

LITE began advertising nationwide for its CEO position at the beginning of the year. The search came on the heels of last November’s abrupt resignation of LITE Director Carolina Cruz. The INDsider reported in early June that LITE received 64 applications for the CEO job, including a number of high-caliber candidates with a wide range of experience.

Florsheim has a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Northeast Louisiana University and is currently pursuing an MBA at UL. Sources close to the selection process told the INDsider early this month that Florsheim was a shoo-in for the job (or would "Florsheim" be a shoe-in?). LITE’s board has been vocal about attempts to strengthen its economic development mission. Florsheim previously served as LITE’s chief operating officer beginning in January 2008 following a job as vice president for the Lafayette Economic Development Authority.

“Henry was chosen because he demonstrated considerable knowledge of contacts and politics in Louisiana and the region,” says Dr. Bradd Clark, dean of UL’s College of Sciences and chairman of the selection committee, in a press release. “He has worked well with our delegation and the university, rallying for continued funding. He has built a successful team at LITE in the past months, and is most understanding of the uniqueness of the dual role of economic development and research."