Yesterday, Keep Louisiana Beautiful (KLB) launched Love the Boot Week, our state’s largest litter removal effort happening in communities across Louisiana through April 24. A celebratory kickoff event held at the Capitol Park Museum was attended by more than 75 guests, including Love the Boot Week event organizers, state and local government officials, and volunteers from Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana.
Speakers at the kickoff included Lieutenant Governor Billy Nungesser; Mark Cooper, Chief of Staff for the Office of Governor John Bel Edwards; Susan Russell, Executive Director of KLB; Secretary Shawn Wilson, Department of Transportation and Development; Secretary Chuck Brown, Department of Environmental Quality; Secretary Jack Montoucet, Department of Wildlife and Fisheries; Secretary James LeBlanc, Department of Public Safety and Corrections; Samantha Bonnette, KLB Board Chair and Marketing and Development Manager of Shreve Memorial Library; and Dawn Cantrell, KLB Board Member and Senior Vice President of Health Services Operations with Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana.
At the kickoff and post-event cleanup, Lieutenant Governor Billy Nungesser emphasized the importance of litter removal and prevention. “When you invite family and friends to your house, you clean up. We need to clean up our house… It’s time to clean up Louisiana.”
Susan Russell, Executive Director of KLB, shared that over 250 cleanup and beautification events are registered in 52 parishes for Love the Boot Week. “Thousands of volunteers are saying enough is enough,” said Russell. “We all need to do our part and bring awareness to this important cause.”
Following the kickoff at the museum, attendees regrouped at the Louisiana Municipal Association parking lot and dispersed to clean up nearby roadways. Lieutenant Billy Nungesser volunteered his time alongside 55 other volunteers, filling 72 bags with litter. Cleanup volunteers found a satellite dish, an old suitcase, tires, pipes, roof shingles, food containers, and various other types of litter.
Courtney Hornsby, KLB Board Member and Chief of Staff for the City of West Monroe, asked “Why do people do what they do? We see it every day on the streets of Louisiana…We have to change our mindsets so we don’t continue this problem because litter is 100% preventable.”
All Louisiana citizens are encouraged to show how they #LovetheBoot by participating in Love the Boot Week. Local volunteer opportunities can be found at www.lovetheboot.org.
KLB thanks Love the Boot Week supporters: The Office of the Lieutenant Governor, Louisiana Travel, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana, Lamar Outdoor Advertising, and the Louisiana Seafood Promotion and Marketing Board.
Watch a recap of the kickoff celebration and cleanup:
Photos from the kickoff celebration and cleanup: