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LaMATS Board Names New Scholarship for Jimmy Williams

At the February 28 meeting of the LaMATS Board of Directors, officers approved funding for a new scholarship program in honor of the late Mayor Jimmy Williams of Sibley, a longtime LaMATS Board member and LMA Past President.

The annual scholarships will support up to ten municipal parks and recreation staff from Louisiana towns and villages to receive specialized training from the Louisiana Recreation and Park Association (LRPA).

LRPA President Amie Hebert, Superintendent of Parks and Parkways for Gretna, said the scholarships will allow qualifying personnel to be certified as Playground Safety Inspectors, a National Recreation and Parks Association training program formerly available only outside of Louisiana.

"This scholarship will make [certification] accessible for smaller towns that wouldn't have the funding to send one of their own," said Hebert. "Now we'll be able to meet people where they are and give them training to better their community."

LaMATS Secretary/Treasurer Mayor Michael Chauffe of Gross Tete introduced the new Jimmy Williams Scholarship as a way to honor his dear friend of many years, whom he praised for his integrity and character.

LaMATS President Mayor David Butler of Woodworth called the honor "well deserved," noting Williams' love of sports and dedication to public parks and recreation. "There could be no more fitting honor for our good friend," said Butler.

The scholarships, supported by dedicated funding through LaMATS, will be effective immediately for upcoming training opportunities announced by LRPA and will be allocated to communities at the request of local mayors. See the March Louisiana Municipal Review (coming soon) for more information about this program.


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