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NW La. Residents Add Input To Historic Civil Rights Trail

Courtesy: Chuck Smith / Red River Radio News

LA CIVIL RIGHTS TRAIL MEETINGS -  For the past month, Louisiana Lieutenant Governor Billy Nungesser’s Office of Tourism has been hosting a series of meetings in cities across the state to help identify locations for a new Louisiana Civil Rights Trail. Meeting  organizers  had an open invitation to the public to help identify and interpret historic events, physical structures, and locations that helped shape civil rights history in their local communities.  A total of nine meetings began late last April in New Orleans and concluded in Lake Charles on May 22nd.  Red River Radio News caught up with one such meeting that occurred in Shreveport last week, it took place in the Valencia Recreation Center in the Stoner 

Credit Courtesy: Chuck Smith / Red River Radio News
Courtesy: Chuck Smith / Red River Radio News

Hill Neighborhood.  Brandy Evans is Vice President of Communications for the Shreveport-Bossier Visitors and Convention Bureau. She shared some thoughts as to what the establishment of a Louisiana Civil Rights Trail could mean to the local community.

Robert Trudeau conducts tours focusing on African American History in Shreveport.  He says there is a need for an active Historic Civil Rights Trail in  Louisiana as the subject matter already attracts  visitors from across the U.S. and internationally.

Tabitha Harrison Taylor,  lives in Shreveport’s MLK neighborhood,  formerly known as The Cooper Road Neighborhood,  she  says  a Civil Rights Trail would give an opportunity to showcase  lesser-known histories of African-American neighborhoods  and how they contributed to Civil Rights progress.

The timeline for the creation of a Louisiana Civil Rights Trail has yet to be established.  But the office of tourism has gathered e-mails from meeting participants and has said will provide updates as things develop.

Chuck Smith brings more than 30 years' broadcast and media experience to Red River Radio. He began his career as a radio news reporter and transitioned to television journalism and newsmagazine production. Chuck studied mass communications at Southern Arkansas University in Magnolia and motion picture / television production at the University of California at Los Angeles. He has also taught writing for television at York Technical College in Rock Hill, South Carolina and video / film production at Centenary College of Louisiana, Shreveport.