Each year, at the Everyday Hero Awards, Keep Louisiana Beautiful recognizes those that go the extra mile to keep our communities litter-free and beautiful. These businesses, organizations, and individual citizens are moving Louisiana towards a more sustainable future through their commendable environmentally conscious efforts.

Wednesday, October 11, 12 – 2 p.m.
Hilton Baton Rouge Capitol Center
201 Lafayette St., Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Keynote Speaker: Jennifer Lawson, President and CEO of Keep America Beautiful
Master of Ceremonies: Courtney Hornsby, Chair of KLB Board of Directors

Everyday Hero Awards luncheon tickets are now sold out. Thank you!

This is the most prestigious Everyday Hero award named in honor of our state’s former First Lady, Alice Foster, who played a significant role in establishing the Keep Louisiana Beautiful organization for a cleaner, greener Louisiana. The Alice Foster Award is presented to an individual who embodies the mission of Keep Louisiana Beautiful through their advocacy and leadership, and whose life’s work has left a legacy in their community. They are well respected by their peers, and they have influenced others to support their mission-driven work.

Named for Keep Louisiana Beautiful’s beloved mascot, Rocksey the Raccoon, this award is presented to a student or student group in grades K-12 exemplifying environmental stewardship. They are passionate about keeping their community clean and beautiful and they recognize it is every citizen’s responsibility to protect the environment. Their leadership in and outside of the classroom encourages their peers to reduce waste, recycle, and pick up litter when they see it. Associated with this award is a cash prize.

The Litter Enforcement Award recognizes law enforcement officers who actively work to stop littering in their community. They go above and beyond to educate the public about the negative impacts of litter, and they work to bring justice to those who break the law by littering or dumping illegally. Eligible for this award are police officers, LDWF agents, justices of the peace, constables, judges, and code enforcement officers.

The Community Improvement Award recognizes a project, program, campaign, or initiative in alignment with the mission and work of Keep Louisiana Beautiful. The effort should demonstrate innovation, collaboration, and measurable community improvement. Eligible are for-profit and non-profit organizations, Keep Louisiana Beautiful Affiliates, schools, and civic groups. Associated with this award is a cash prize.

The Clean Biz Leadership Award is granted to an organization that has demonstrated dedication to Keep Louisiana Beautiful’s mission and has adopted operational practices to support a cleaner, greener community. The organization may have implemented policies and procedures for recycling, waste reduction, and litter prevention. The business may also support community improvement through sponsorship, volunteerism, programming, and other relevant initiatives. Eligible are for-profit and non-profit organizations with less than 50 employees. Clean Biz Partnership participation is encouraged but not required for consideration.

The Clean Biz Leadership Award is granted to an organization that has demonstrated dedication to Keep Louisiana Beautiful’s mission and has adopted operational practices to support a cleaner, greener community. The organization may have implemented policies and procedures for recycling, waste reduction, and litter prevention. The organization may also support community improvement through sponsorship, volunteerism, programming, and other relevant initiatives. Eligible are for-profit and non-profit organizations with more than 50 employees. Clean Biz Partnership participation is encouraged but not required for consideration.

The Chamber Clean Biz Leadership Award is presented to a Chamber of Commerce for their dedication and involvement in Keep Louisiana Beautiful’s Clean Biz Partnership. They have worked diligently to promote the program and recruited the largest percentage of members. Through their work, they emphasize the importance of keeping Louisiana clean and beautiful to support healthy economic development and an exceptional quality of life. This award is selected by KLB and the Louisiana Chamber of Commerce Executives. It will first be awarded at the LACCE conference and presented again at the Everyday Hero Awards. Nominations are not accepted.

The Outstanding Community Affiliate Award is presented to a Keep Louisiana Beautiful Community Affiliate that has made significant strides in the past year in making their community a cleaner, greener place to live. The recipient organization demonstrates strength in leadership by engaging key stakeholders and volunteers in collaborative initiatives with a measurable impact. The community served by the Affiliate is a better place to live thanks to the ongoing efforts of the organization. Associated with this award is a cash prize.

The Outstanding University Affiliate Award is presented to a Keep Louisiana Beautiful University Affiliate that has demonstrated strong leadership and a growing presence in their campus community. Not only have the efforts of the Affiliate resulted in visible and measurable changes, but they’ve also led to a cultural shift, with more students, faculty, and staff committed to reducing waste, preventing litter, and improving the appearance of their campus. Associated with this award is a cash prize.

The Collegiate Environmental Steward Award is presented to a college student or student group going above and beyond to make their campus community clean, sustainable, and beautiful. Their campus involvement and leadership have led to measurable change and inspired others to volunteer. The recipient embodies vision, leadership, determination, and collaboration. Associated with this award is a cash prize.

The Leaders Against Litter Award recognizes individuals in public service who go above and beyond the call of duty to support Keep Louisiana Beautiful’s mission to clean up and beautify our Sportsman’s Paradise. The recipient of this award inspires and empowers others to follow their lead and work towards achieving a cleaner, greener Louisiana. To be eligible, an individual must work in public service: police officer, firefighter, educator, librarian, government employee, elected official, etc.

The Let Louisiana Shine Award, named in celebration of Keep Louisiana Beautiful’s statewide litter prevention campaign, is presented to a passionate volunteer who has dedicated their time and energy to community enhancement efforts. They may contribute by collaborating with community organizations and stakeholders to clean up litter, beautify spaces, and contribute to an improved quality of life for their fellow residents. Associated with this award is a cash prize.

2023 Everyday Heroes

Sandra Slifer, Alice Foster Award

Through her leadership at Keep Abita Beautiful (KAB) and her commitment to the vitality and well-being of her community, Sandra Slifer exemplifies the mission of KLB. Since joining the KAB Board in 2017, Sandra has dedicated much of her time to creating, monitoring, and carrying out the logistics of programs in Abita Springs to help bring awareness to the litter and recycling issue throughout St. Tammany Parish. She is actively involved in pursuing grant opportunities, planning, and logistics, all while showing up at every town event with her straw hat and pull cart collecting recycling and picking up litter. Sandra is a strong believer that hard work and collaboration can give everyone a sense of ownership and pride in our community. Whether she’s organizing a town cleanup or searching for grant opportunities, she is a tireless advocate for her community and an asset to Abita Springs and the state.

Sandra’s involvement with the KLB family began in 2008 when she volunteered to serve on an education committee with Keep Mandeville Beautiful. She was an intricate part of a dynamic group of women who created Puppets with Purpose, a traveling puppet show with recorded original music and voiceovers. The puppet masters traveled to schools throughout Mandeville giving live performances and teaching thousands of children the importance of not littering, recycling, and caring for their community. It took a lot of arm strength to hold up the puppets behind the curtain for 30 minutes at a time.

In 2020, Sandra was named Abita Springs Volunteer of the Year, and in 2021, she received the honor of Citizen of the year. That year, KAB was also recognized as KLB’s Outstanding Affiliate. The Outstanding Community Affiliate Award is presented to a KLB Community Affiliate that has made significant strides in the past year in making their community a cleaner, greener place to live. The recipient organization demonstrates strength in leadership by engaging key stakeholders and volunteers in collaborative initiatives with a measurable impact. KAB also continuously meets the requirements for KLB’s Circle of Excellence Award, recognizing active and engaged Community Affiliates.

Yuri Cobb, Rocksey’s Young Leadership Award

A junior at West Monroe High School, Yuri Cobb began volunteering with Ouachita Green when she was 10. Since then, she has become actively involved in beautification, litter abatement, and recycling efforts in Ouachita Parish. Yuri has spent the last two summers interning for Ouachita Green. Yuri led the recycling section at parish-wide America Recycles Day events and Household Hazardous Waste Collection events for the last two years. She was also one of the artists involved in the Ouachita Green and Keep West Monroe Beautiful “Frame the Drain Project,” painting a storm drain to remind passing traffic and pedestrians that “A clean Louisiana starts with us!” Yuri has also helped with planning and leading Love the Boot Week activities and events. Through her volunteerism over the years, Yuri has blossomed into a thriving young leader in her community.

Sgt. John Hattaway, Litter Enforcement Award 

Sgt. John Hattaway is a 10-year veteran with the La. Dept of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Division. and has proven year after year to be one of the department’s premier agents of litter enforcement. Over the last year, Sgt. Hattaway issued the highest number of gross littering citations issued by any LDWF agent in the past year. For this reason, he was given the LDWF Meritorious Service Award for Littering Apprehension. Sgt. Hattaway coordinates the camera effort in his district, which covers Ouachita, Jackson, Lincoln, and Union Parishes. He has been able to identify problem dumping areas and utilize the cameras to make a difference in his areas, in one instance making five separate gross littering cases in one day. As impressive as Sgt. Hattaway’s littering cases are, they are only part of his exceptional case load. His case load is consistently in the top 10 statewide, and he is almost always the top producer in his region.

Clean Pelican, Community Improvement Award 

Clean Pelican was organically formed in January 2021 by a group of volunteers after an explosion of litter in Baton Rouge. Glenda Pollard and Johanna Landreneau knew they wanted to make a sustainable difference, and that would require formally organizing a non-profit 501(c)3 which would allow them to apply for grants and accept donations for this monumental undertaking. Johanna took on the application and legal work, and they were up and going in March of 2021 with a strong board of directors made up of like-minded community leaders and professionals. To date, 40 community litter pickups have been organized, and an estimated 1,200 contractor bags of litter have been collected and hauled to commercial dumpsters.

LSU AgCenter Botanic Gardens, Clean Biz Leadership Award (less than 50 employees)

The LSU AgCenter Botanic Gardens is an expansive collection of specialty gardens, woodlands, wetlands, and arboreta. The 150 acres of urban woods is home to Trees and Trails, five miles of educational walking paths through the Burden Woods and wetlands. The mission of the Botanic Gardens is to promote the importance of plants and their environment to the physical, mental, and spiritual well-being of the citizens of Louisiana and beyond.  

Through the past 10 years as Resident Director, Dr. Jeff Keuhny has taken this facility to new levels of research, community outreach, education, funding, and environmental well-being. One of his many impacts has been spearheading the clean-up efforts in the wetlands of Burden where 50+ years of refuse buildup had occurred in barrow pits adjacent to Ward Creek, the primary drainage channel for all of Baton Rouge watersheds. He has worked with the Louisiana Stormwater Coalition, Mississippi River Cities and Towns Initiative, City of Baton Rouge, LDEQ, and the LDCRT to obtain funding through an EPA Trash Free Waters grant to employ the expertise of OSPREY Initiative, an environmentally passioned company. OSPREY, with the assistance of many volunteers, has performed the cleanup and recycling of the refuse along with ongoing monitoring and research for long-term litter abatement solutions. An estimated 3 tons of refuse has been removed from the area. This is part of a city/parish and statewide stormwater and litter abatement effort that has brought exposure to the issues of trash and non-point pollution that have become detrimental to the waterways of East Baton Rouge and Louisiana. 

ExxonMobil Baton Rouge, Clean Biz Leadership Award (more than 50 employees) 

ExxonMobil is consistent and passionate about the work they do in the community to make it an area employees, contractors and neighbors are proud to call home. Annually, ExxonMobil sponsors and provides volunteers for several clean-up days in the community and along their fence line. The company also plants indigenous trees and pollinator gardens in its greenbelt to establish a flourishing and healthy environment. ExxonMobil participated in Love the Boot Week for the past two years, participating in litter cleanups and planting efforts. Employees also hosted collection booths for electronic recycling and paper shredding.

In efforts to reduce plastic waste, ExxonMobil has created workplace initiatives such as “Bring Your Own Cup and Your Own Utensils,” as well as wash areas for reusable supplies.  Throughout the company’s complex, there are recycle bins placed in common areas to encourage recycling. Further practices include site collection of types 2, 4, and 5 plastic caps to be utilized as internal feedstock for ExxonMobil’s Baytown Facility Advanced Recycling efforts, which converts hard-to-recycle plastic waste into raw materials to create circular plastic products. ExxonMobil also has worked to implement collaborative, innovative solutions to combat illegal dumping.

Winnsboro-Franklin Chamber of Commerce, Chamber Clean Biz Leadership Award

The Winnsboro-Franklin Parish Chamber of Commerce is in the business of serving their community. From helping new businesses get started to representing the interests of the well-established pillars of the business community, the Chamber works to ensure that Winnsboro and Franklin Parish offer one of the best places in the South to work, live and play. Since its founding in 1949, the Chamber of Commerce has played an active role in the development of Winnsboro and Franklin Parish. They work to keep businesses and individuals informed and engaged with the issues impacting their community. This year, they are recognized for being the chamber of commerce with the highest percentage of members (14%) participating in KLB’s Clean Biz Partnership program.

Keep Tangipahoa Beautiful, Outstanding Community Affiliate Award 

Keep Tangipahoa Beautiful (KTB) has made significant strides in creating a cleaner, brighter Tangipahoa Parish. This group, which began with just five grabbers and a few reflective vests seven years ago, has grown to a board of directors representing every part of this 50-mile-long parish and a host of volunteers who in the last year picked up 17,794 bags of trash and 333 tires.

With the KTB board, Tangipahoa Parish operates a three-pronged litter attack (via education, beautification, and enforcement) five days a week, 52 weeks a year, plus many weekends. Over the last year, the parish also identified 175 illegal dump sites and made efforts not only to clean those sites up but also to identify the culprits involved and take action to prevent future dumping by those individuals.

Collaboration is a key value in KTB’s work. They work with partners in their community such as Osprey Initiative to support recycling during Love the Boot Week, and Southeastern Louisiana University to expand the reach of their educational programming. Their collaborative spirit and innovative efforts serve to promote a culture of cleanliness throughout their community.

University of Louisiana at Lafayette, Outstanding University Affiliate Award

Over the past year, Keep UL Lafayette Beautiful (KULB) has worked diligently to facilitate and participate in campus and community litter collections, native tree and plant planting events, training and educational workshops, and campus service work. With assistance from University Affiliate and Community Beautification Grants through KLB, KULB was able to install three sets of landfill/recycling bins in campus building lobbies and increase the native tree and plant population on campus. Thus, increasing their management of waste streams on campus, decreasing opportunities for litter accumulation, and increasing the campus inventory of native plant/tree species. During the 2022-2023 year, KULB has engaged 107 volunteers and totaled 523 volunteer hours.

Tulane Trash to Treasure, Collegiate Environmental Steward Award

Tulane Trash to Treasure is determined to tackle the problem of waste during move-out with a nimble, sustainable social venture. The students lead an annual collection of gently used goods during spring campus move-out, store them over the summer, and sell them to the campus community during fall move-in.

The organization was founded in 2014 by Tulane undergraduate students Tracy Godbe, Anne Bevis, and Margot Habets as a social venture to divert waste, reduce consumption, and donate funds to local non-profits. Operating since 2014, with the exception of the first year of the pandemic, the quantity of materials collected has increased annually. The 2023 collection diverted 5,120 cubic feet of dorm furnishings alone from the landfill. These figures do not include clothing, books, school supplies, Mardi Gras throws, bedding, toiletries, cleaning supplies, and food that were collected, sorted, and donated to local non-profits with the help of collaborators and volunteers.

Janet Vincent, Leaders Against Litter Award 

At the center of every event and improvement effort in DeRidder is city employee Janet Vincent, Project Coordinator and Assistant to Director of Utilities. Janet is conscientious, a hard worker, and creative. Her co-workers call her “MVP.” She has a passion for DeRidder, striving to make it the best city it can be. Janet has been able to attract and collaborate with local industries, businesses, and residents alike to help in the cleanup of our city.  Janet has spearheaded grant-writing initiatives for the city to pave the way for educational opportunities, beautification, and litter reduction projects. Perhaps most notable is Janet’s grant work to obtain funding to support the recycling collection center at Beauregard Arc. This local recycling option has benefited the organization’s mission to provide work opportunities for developmentally disabled adults — as well as the DeRidder community as a whole. The conveniently located center collects recyclables including cardboard, newspaper, aluminum, and tin cans.

Ryan Chavers, Let Louisiana Shine Volunteer Award

Described as “the Ray of Sunshine in the Watson Community,” Ryan Chavers is passionate about serving the community he has called home for 31 years. Chavers has been volunteering for the Watson Spring and Fall clean-up events for the past 4 years and organized clean-up efforts for Love the Boot Week. He has gone the extra mile by collaborating with Livingston Parish Council Members, bringing awareness to the litter problems and illegal dumping sites on Parish and State roadways. At Parish Council meetings, Ryan has presented on the tons of litter and debris in all 9 Livingston Parish districts. As a result of his efforts on the Board of Keep Livingston Beautiful, 100% of his districts participated in Love the Boot Week in 2023.

Keep Tiger Town Beautiful, Love the Boot Community Impact Award

Keep Tiger Town Beautiful is a group of litter warriors who are passionate about maintaining and improving beautiful Baton Rouge. They host community cleanups daily across the city and provide all of the resources needed for individuals to plan their own cleanup events. In addition, they have placed and continue to maintain 150 public trash cans, cleaned up over 50 abandoned homeless camps, removed hundreds of illegally dumped tires, cleaned out hundreds of drains, and removed over 12,800 contractor bags of litter since January 2021. Led by local realtor and volunteer extraordinaire, Jennifer Richardson, Keep Tiger Town Beautiful demonstrated outstanding initiative and dedication during this year’s Love the Boot Week. With over 100 volunteers and nine events during the week, the group collected around 600 trash bags of litter and 11,000 pounds of large item waste.

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