Honorees Announced for 50th Annual Baton Rouge Area Volunteer Activist Awards

Screen Shot 2021 09 02 At 83834 PmBATON ROUGE, La (press release) – Emerge will host the 2021 Baton Rouge Area Volunteer Activist awards luncheon on Friday, Nov. 12, at The Crowne Plaza Hotel. This awards luncheon recognizes individuals who have provided exceptional volunteer service to the Baton Rouge community. The 2021 Volunteer Activist honorees are:

Laurie Aronson

Leonard Augustus

Cheri Ausberry

Jan Breen

Preston Castille

O’Neil Curtis

Norisha Kirts Glover

Bridget Kaigler

Eric Lane

John Turner


“We are honored to host this beloved celebration of volunteer leaders who are making a difference in our community,” said Deanna Whittle, CEO of Emerge. “This year is particularly special as we commemorate the event’s 50th Anniversary.”

Since the Volunteer Activist event’s inception in 1971, event proceeds support Emerge’s mission of empowering children with autism and individuals with communication challenges to achieve independence through an interdisciplinary therapy program within an innovative educational model.

In addition to recognizing this year’s Volunteer Activists, Emerge will present the Margaret Neely Award to Stephen and Colleen Waguespack. This award is named in honor of Margaret Neely, the long-standing Executive Director of Baton Rouge Speech and Hearing Foundation (now known as Emerge) and celebrates individuals who have served Emerge’s mission as volunteer leaders.

Presenting Sponsors of this year’s luncheon are GMFS, Go Auto, Junior League of Baton Rouge, Lee Michael’s Fine Jewelry, Jennifer and Sean Reilly and Red River Bank. Supporting Sponsors are b1BANK, Cox Communications, Faulk & Winkler, Fig & Dove, Hancock Whitney Bank, InRegister, Louisiana Lottery and Taylor Porter.

Emerge is committed to ensuring the health and safety of event attendees and will follow all CDC-recommended guidelines in hosting the luncheon. Event logistics are subject to change based on COVID-19 protocols. For more event information, including sponsorship opportunities, visit www.emergela.org/brava



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