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Brett Majoria ‘87 proudly presides over a vibrant family business, the New
Orleans Central Business District breakfast biscuit, poboy and hot plate lunch emporium, Majoria’s Commerce Restaurant. Every Monday through Friday at 300 Camp Street downtown, Commerce regulars, tourists and nearby office and hotel workers crowd the restaurant’s counter and tables for “the Original CBB (Commerce Breakfast Biscuit)”, creamy red beans and rice, sumptuous breaded bone-in pork chops, Southern fried and baked chicken, loaded shrimp poboys and other classic New Orleans blue collar comfort foods.

The commerce was established at its present location by Brett’s father, the late John Majoria of Marrero (1938-2013) with John’s childhood friend, Bruce Griffen, in 1968. Brett grew up in Marrero with the restaurant in his blood He attended Visitation of Our Lady grammar school and graduated from Shaw in 1987. He spent five years studying at Northeast Louisiana University inMonroe and overseas, earning his college degrees in business and behavioral sciences.

Brett joined his father behind the Commerce counter in 1992.His Dad was old school, operating on a cash only payment basis. Brett began to suggest a few upgrades in the business model, gently lobbying his father to install an ATM machine and accept credit card payments.

“The neighborhood was changing,” Brett said, with fewer local patrons from downtown office buildings and more tourists from new hotels used to paying exclusively with credit cards. His father resisted Brett’s credit card suggestion, but after Dad died in 2013, and
Brett took the helm, he made the switch to accepting credit cards. “When I did that,” Brett said, “I felt a little pang of guilt and heard my father telling me, ‘Man, son, you’re really screwing it up.’”

The daily breakfast and lunch traffic at Majoria’s Commerce proves that Brett definitely did not screw it up. The menu of New Orleans classics, including poboys of all kinds and classically prepared homestyle plate meals, is delectable. The homey excellence of the food and the funky climate of the old-style serving counter and tight tables would be worthy of nomination for a feature on The Food Network’s “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives” television program.

Brett presides over it all, dressed usually in golf shirt, blue jeans and baseball cap, with
affability and efficiency, clanging constantly on the Commerce’s ancient, antique cash register, which he plays like a musical instrument. His business is an important downtown institution and tradition, providing not just a living for the Majoria family, but also employment for seven or eight employees at a time and a welcoming place that reminds New Orleans locals and visitors alike of what makes New Orleans food and hospitality famous.

Learn more about Majoria’s Commerce, its history, menu and the Shaw Alumnus who
operates it by dropping into 300 Camp Street in New Orleans Monday through Friday for breakfast or lunch in person or by visiting the restaurant’s website at www.commercerest.com.

Governor John Bel Edwards has appointed
JOE TOOMY ‘66 to a five-year term as a member of the Board of Commissioners of the Port of New Orleans. TOM CORTAZZO ‘80 has joined the Lewis Brisbois law firm in New Orleans as a partner. TERRY TALAMO ‘73 has been appointed District 1 Chief of Staff by newly elected Jefferson Parish Councilman Marion Edwards. Current Shaw Principal MARK WILLIAMS ‘85 has earned his doctorate degree in education from the University of Holy Cross. DOUGLAS CURRAULT ‘82 has been promoted to General Counsel and Corporate Secretary of Freeport McMoran, a Fortune 500 Company and worldwide leader in the mining industry, headquartered in Phoenix. PAT PEREIRA ‘73 announces the birth of his grand-daughter, Ava Rose Pereira, daughter of Todd and Olivia Pereira of Belle Chasse, LA. RICHARD ROMAIN ‘72 is the star of a recently
re-released independent movie set in Louisiana
titled “Cane River,” originally filmed in 1981.
PATRICK CONNICK ‘79 has been elected to the Louisiana State Senate representing a large district that includes Harvey, Marrero and Westwego.

ALUMNi personals