EXECUTIVE TEAM BIOS
Gary L. Smith, Jr. – Vice President of Acquisitions and Investments
Growing up in the family business, Gary Smith, Jr. easily melded into Magnolia’s corporate dealings, as he was surrounded by all the aspects of the Magnolia Company’s various industries, often discussed over family dinners and in conversations between his father and uncle. After his undergraduate degree at LSU, he earned his law degree at Loyola University and then his Master of Laws degree at Tulane University. Throughout his academic career, Smith became more involved in the family businesses, adding his particular expertise and skill set to the company dynamic. He currently provides in-house legal guidance to all Magnolia Companies’ divisions, applying his vast experience in taxes and corporate investments.
Justin E. Tassin – Vice President of Maritime Operations
The Magnolia Companies Maritime Division is comprised of a complex fleet of vessels. Tassin oversees the dredging and quarter barges divisions of the Magnolia Companies’ Maritime Division, utilizing his comprehensive understanding of each piece of equipment’s technology, mechanics and operation. From managing offshore housing to the employment of equipment and components, Tassin recognizes how to maximize available resources and how to manage and develop the crews who operate them.
William “Tony” Cunningham – Vice President of Operations Recovery & Rentals
Cunningham, having been with The Magnolia Companies for over 15 years, is involved with virtually every aspect of all of the entities associated with MHI. After acquiring a BA in Sociology at Tulane, Cunningham continued on to earn his MBA at the prestigious A. B. Freeman School of Business. With his extensive experience and knowledge, Cunningham has a strong understanding of the diversity of people and divisions that he manages, which, in turn, helps him to achieve and exceed the goals of the Magnolia Companies as a whole.
With more than 35-years’ experience in international dredging projects, Johnson brings a wealth of experience to the Magnolia Companies. He has provided our firm with invaluable counsel and was instrumental in the expansion of the Magnolia Company’s Maritime Division. The executive team utilizes Johnson’s keen understanding of the complexity of land and sea projects in the undertaking of a number of multifaceted endeavors. He helps the company to evaluate capacity and capabilities, to accurately bid and undertake new ventures, and to most efficiently and effectively allocate resources.
Mike Messer – VP Heavy Lifting & Safety
Managing projects, procedures and people safely is Messer’s charge, running the land-based and industrial divisions of the Magnolia Companies. A “heavyweight” when it comes to determining the proper tonnage of equipment, Messer is responsible for the logistics of many industrial expansions. Messer’s production mindset, with an emphasis on maintaining a stellar safety record, has made him an integral part of our Magnolia Companies team for over 35 years.
Melanie Maurin – Executive Director of Corporate Finance
Maurin has navigated the ever-changing waters of corporate finance, demonstrating her vast knowledge and strong penchant for expecting accuracy from all those around her. She fully manages the financial department staff, as well as the cash flow for all divisions of the Magnolia Companies of Louisiana LLC.