The principal role of LAGCOE Looey is to serve as a goodwill ambassador for the show. Chosen by the LAGCOE chairman and sporting a hardhat, "Looey” greets LAGCOE participants at the door, welcomes foreign delegations to LAGCOE and takes part in public ceremonies, such as the ribbon-cutting that opens the exposition.
The LAGCOE 2015 chairman is Steve Maley of Badger Oil.
LAGCOE Looey evolved from the cartoon character "Lafayette Looey” used for the first LAGCOE show, LAGCOE’s website says. Lyle Cummins took on that symbolic role in 1955.
Since then, 34 more people have filled the role. Early in LAGCOE’s history, Looey was chosen as the "every man” image of the oilfield worker — not unlike the cartoon character from the first show that sported a hard hat, coveralls and a 5 o’clock shadow. Nicknames of the chosen Looeys could be colorful in the early days: "Bugs,” "Mumpsy” and "Nubbin.”
In recent years, the honor has gone to high-ranking oil company officials like Donald Mosing of Frank’s International, John E. Chance of C&C Technologies, Paul Hilliard of Badger Oil, "Bo” Ramsay and, in 2013, Al Thomas II of CETA.
One woman, Gloria Knox, handled the role. She served as Looey in 2001.
Thomas said he considered the role to be a two-year job, not a three-day position utilized only during the show. He represented LAGCOE at various events over the past two years. So did Ramsay during his tenure, which started in 2011.
LAGCOE is scheduled for Oct. 27-29 at the Cajundome. The 2013 show drew a record 17,000 participants, including those who attend a job fair held during the exposition.