For some time now, the forgotten hero of U.S. business has been the entrepreneur. Every place of business, from the humblest storefront to the gleaming corporate campus, is testament to the existence of an entrepreneur’s vision. Entrepreneurial spirit is the embodiment of the classical conception of liberty. Entrepreneurs are their own bosses and survive by their success. Gains or losses are in proportion to their ability to serve the wants and needs of a market. In a free society, the entrepreneur’s spirit is the driving force for growth.
The motivation for entrepreneurship is not wealth but the desire to respond to human need and cultural challenges. The entrepreneur exercises their imagination to create new opportunities for customers and employees. The Center for Spiritual Capital believes that successful entrepreneurs sustain their organizations by creating workplaces based on values and ethics as a way of doing business. The center is privileged to establish an Award for Ethical Entrepreneurship in Alden "Doc" Laborde's name and honor.
Alden "Doc" Laborde, the recipient of the inaugural Alden "Doc" Laborde Award for Ethical Entrepreneurship, more than anyone else in the history of Louisiana, embodies the talents and virtues of entrepreneurship. Laborde's life was built on a foundation of faith and family. When asked in an interview with center director Nicholas Capaldi what he thought about the state of business ethics today, Laborde's reply was:
“I do not believe there is such a thing. Ethics is an absolute term applying to all activities. The ethical conduct of any enterprise depends on the morals of those who have accepted leadership responsibilities and how that is transmitted to the other members of the enterprise. I firmly believe that morality has its foundation in spirituality.”
It is in this spirit that the center establishes the award that bears Laborde's name.