Native New Orleanian
MS Urban Studies
Laura Guccione was born in New Orleans and raised in the suburbs, leaving the city to attend the
University of Georgia in 1987, and then after graduation she spent a few years in Los Angeles returning to New Orleans in 1993. She worked as a bartender at several restaurants and bars in the French Quarter and owned a mask shop with her sister. After Hurricane Katrina, she and her sister shuttered their shop and she returned to tending bar on Frenchmen Street. She decided to go to culinary school and graduated from Delgado Culinary School in 2010 but she realized that as much as she loved cooking, she was more interested in the origins of plants and food used in various cuisines, especially the food of Louisiana. After years of explaining to tourists and transplants that she was from New Orleans and that there was a large group of Sicilian-Americans who lived in Louisiana, she realized the extent of neglect in the history of the city and state so she set out to expose the history of the Sicilians in southeastern Louisiana. In 2019, she received her M.S. in Urban Studies from the University of New Orleans. From her thesis research she stumbled upon some fascinating New Orleans history. Her book-length manuscript is now being peer reviewed by LSU Press.