For Dianne La Basse (NC ’74, B ’76), New Orleans and music were forever intertwined.

Though La Basse left New Orleans for New York City in 1983 for a successful career in private banking, the city was never far from her thoughts.

man playing a tuba in French Quarter
Dianne La Basse (NC ’74, B ’76) was committed to the musical culture of New Orleans and considered Tulane a repository of that culture. The Dianne Lynn La Basse Scholarship provides support to students studying jazz in the Department of Music.

When it came time to think about her legacy, La Basse designed a bequest that would support both her beloved alma mater and her hometown. The Dianne Lynn La Basse Scholarship is an endowed fund that provides scholarship support for students in New Orleans and its vicinity who are studying the performance of jazz or other forms of music.

With two degrees from Tulane, having completed her undergraduate degree at Newcomb College and then her MBA at the A. B. Freeman School of Business, La Basse regarded Tulane as playing a unique role in the city’s history — and, perhaps, its future. 

According to her husband, Alan Seget, La Basse regarded Tulane “as a repository of New Orleans culture. And she wanted to preserve and protect that.”

“I’m sure she felt also that the kids who were receiving the scholarship money by pursuing music — and jazz in particular — would be great proponents, without even trying, of New Orleans and its unique culture,” he recalled. 

La Basse’s thoughtful commitment to the students of the Department of Music is already making an impact, according to Dan Sharp, chair of the department. “Our relationship to the New Orleans community is a top priority, and it sounds like Dianne’s values were very much in line with that,” said Sharp.