Meet our team

Carmen Sunda


As Director of the LSBDC Greater New Orleans and Bayou Region, Sunda is responsible for the management and operations of a 10-parish regional SBDC with multiple collaborative partners. Sunda has over thirty years of experience in assisting small businesses in achieving growth, profitability and sustainability.  She has been recognized nationally for her expertise and innovation.

Her areas of specialty include strategic marketing, loan packaging, market research, management and risk management. She was named the Louisiana SBDC State Star in 2007 and awarded the SBA 2009 Financial Services Champion of the Year for the state of Louisiana.  In 2015, she was honored as one of the 50 Women of the Year by CityBusiness and awarded a Louisiana Economic Development Collaborative Excellence Award for collaborative partnership with St. John the Baptist parish.

Sunda led the LSBDC GNOBR team in assisting small businesses in recovering and rebuilding after the 2005 Hurricanes Katrina/Rita, 2008 Hurricanes Gustav/Ike, 2010 BP Oil Spill Disaster and Hurricane Isaac in 2012. The LSBDC GNOBR was awarded the Louisiana SBDC Center Innovation award in 2011 and 2013 and was named the top SBDC in the Nation for 2013 by the U.S. Small Business Administration receiving the National Small Business Development Center Service Excellence and Innovation Award.

Sunda owned her own business and was an assistant professor for over 25 years with Loyola University and the University of New Orleans. She holds an MBA from the University of New Orleans.

Dianne F. Sclafani

Business Consultant, Restaurant & Food Specialist

Dianne Sclafani specializes in the hospitality industry with an expertise in restaurants for new and existing entrepreneurs. Her greatest desire is to assist others achieve their career and business dreams by sharing her over 25 years of experience. She has a BS in Business Management, is a trained chef instructor and an experienced business owner.

Dianne’s extensive food business experience provides many insights when consulting and training  restaurant owners, chefs, general managers, food manufacturers, and wholesale and retail food sales vendors in all aspects of administrative and operational needs for their business success. She is past president of the New Orleans Chapter and active member of the National Speakers Association.

Erik D. Waters

Business Consultant

Erik D. Waters is a Business Consultant at the Louisiana Small Business Development Center – Greater New Orleans and Bayou Region.  He has been a SBDC Consultant and staff member of the Division of Business at Xavier University since November 2011.

 Prior to working with LSBDC, Erik served as Vice President (formerly Business Development Manager and Certification Manager) for the Louisiana Minority Supplier Development Council for 7+ years as well as a private Consultant for business development and certification programs.  His areas of service expertise include; Certification, business start-ups, Internet marketing, loan packaging and business expansion and development.  Erik has a BBA from Loyola University with a concentration in Finance.  He has been a private consultant for startup businesses as well as has provided contracting assistance and joint venture development for existing firms.

Wayne Aucoin

Business Continuity Consultant

Wayne Aucoin is a Business Continuity Consultant and Trainer specializing in business continuity, financial management, operations, disaster planning and marketing. He is also a catastrophic claims adjustor. Wayne is an entrepreneur with over 30 years of small business experience.

He has been a franchisor/trainer distributor in the disaster restoration industry, has owned multiple retail operations throughout south Louisiana, and has also worked as a marketing representative for a forensic engineering consulting firm. Wayne is a former charter member and executive board member of the Algiers Economic Development Foundation. He earned a BS in Economics from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette.

Jimmy Nguyen

Business Consultant

Jimmy Nguyen began his career as a Manager Trainee for Tower Loan, one of the industry’s leading finance companies serving over 200,000 customers. He continued to pursue his career in finance and joined South Central Planning & Development Commission in 2011.

In a short period of time, Jimmy became the Underwriter for the organization servicing a $12 million dollar portfolio. Within 3 years, Jimmy was responsible for lending over $9.6 million dollars to aid small businesses in Louisiana with disaster recovery loans. In 2015, Jimmy joined the Small Business Development Center team and specializes in financial analysis, funding proposals and underwriting.

With a bachelor’s degree in business administrations from Nicholls State University and an extensive finance background, Jimmy strives to give back to the community. He actively supports breast cancer fundraisers and participates in the Susan G. Komen races every year. Jimmy also contributes to the Terrebonne Foundation for Academic Excellence by donating and competing in the 5K events.

Jonathan Menyon

Assessment Consultant

Jonathan is a Business Administration graduate of Xavier University of Louisiana.  He is responsible for all new client assessments, office operations, managing all interns and graduate assistants and reporting requirements for the SBDC training programs.   His goal is to impact the future success of the SBDC’s triple bottom line, while aiding in the creation of environmentally sustainable businesses and practices.  Jonathan is experienced in sales and customer service and co-manages an urban farm on the campus of Xavier University of Louisiana, a business he assisted in starting.  

Haritiana Langlois

Business Consultant

Haritiana Langlois is a Business Consultant specializing in international trade, startups, research, and strategic planning. Prior to joining the LSBDC, she spent twelve years in health care, public health, program management, and international development as a medical doctor working for the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).  Haritiana's work experience spanned 10 countries on 4 continents and allowed her to gain a wide variety of skills.

She is fluent in four languages including French and Italian. She has a passion for social entrepreneurship, travels, and connecting with and discovering other cultures. She is a ASQ certified Six Sigma Green Belt and a NASBITE Certified Global Business Professional. Haritiana graduated on top of her class from Loyola University New Orleans’s MBA program. She combines her business education with her background in medicine and social work to bring a unique perspective to the clients she assists. She holds a medical degree from Universite Catholique de Louvain in Belgium and a Master's of Public Health from Tulane University, New Orleans.

Richard A Melancon, CPA

Business Consultant

Richard Melancon, Business Consultant and Trainer, has over twenty five years of experience in accounting, tax, and business consulting services for small and medium sized businesses. He owns an accounting practice and has expertise in accounting services, strategic planning, product/service pricing consulting, income tax preparation at the corporate and individual levels, tax planning services and computer consulting.

Richard has served as an adjunct professor at University of New Orleans, the same university where he received his BS in management, BS in accounting, and MBA. He has been acknowledged for outstanding performance by the SBA and the National Speakers Association, and is the author of the book You Can Afford the Good Life, a self-help book on financial management for individuals who are in financial crisis.

Mike Pennison

Business Consultant

Mike Pennison is a Business Consultant and Trainer specializing in business planning, strategy, operations, financial projections, and marketing. He has over 30 years business experience including project management, purchasing contracted services, information technology, engineering, construction, and oil & gas. Mike is also experienced in disaster recovery and rebuilding.

He has an MBA from Loyola University and certifications for C.P.M. (Certified Purchasing Manager) and CPIM (Certified in Production and Inventory Management), and is also a certified trainer of the Covey 7 Habits for Small Business Managers and a member of the National Speaker's Association.

Ron Markham

Ron Markham has over 26 years experience as a business consultant and success coach. He is a performance improvement expert and has helped business owners and organizations reach their full potential and succeed. He specializes in performance improvement, customer service, marketing/sales, teambuilding, and synergistic teamwork. Ron owns a training and development company helping business professionals build high performance organizations and high performance people. He has earned a reputation as a consultant of integrity with a gift for inspiring and equipping people for greater achievement. He is a knowledgeable, caring, and effective teacher and coach helping enterprises to succeed strategically. Businesses he serves build solid foundations for organizational and financial growth. Ron is a degreed business professional well equipped to help entrepreneurs and business owners achieve their goals.  

Xavier University of Louisiana, Division of Business, Xavier South – ROOM 203
909 S. Jefferson Davis
New Orleans, LA 70125
Phone: 504-831-3730

Mailing address:
LSBDC Greater New Orleans
& Bayou Region
Division of Business, Xavier South
Xavier University of Louisiana
1 Drexel Drive, Box 52
New Orleans, LA. 70125

M - F 9:00 am to 5:00 pm



Parishes Served: 
Assumption, Jefferson, Lafourche, Orleans, Plaquemines, St. Bernard, St. Charles, St. James, St. John the Baptist, and Terrebonne.