Tuesday, July 08, 2014
St. John the Baptist Parish – St. John the Baptist Parish President Natalie Robottom has been named the 2014 County Leader of the Year by American City & County Magazine. This award is given annually to one elected official in the country based on major accomplishments and how important their efforts are to the community.
President Robottom was honored by the magazine for her outstanding leadership in managing a crisis during Hurricane Isaac and spurring the recovery in the two years since.
Robottom was commended in the swift and directed activation of the Parish’s emergency plan which resulted in no lives lost during the storm and for coordinating the cohesive effort of the numerous agencies that arrived following the storm. Through her guidance, a business call center, business resource center, St. John the Baptist Parish Long-Term Recovery Group (SJBP LTRG) and Citizens Advisory Committee were all formed to directly respond to the needs of the community.
To date, the SJBP LTRG has helped more than a thousand homeowners return to their homes and the Citizens Advisory Committee is working vigorously on identifying and implementing projects as well as identifying funding sources to improve basic needs and infrastructure in the parish. A $30 million bond issue was also passed for improvements to the water system, drainage, roads, recreation, parish buildings and emergency management facilities.
President Robottom continues to advocate tirelessly for the Westshore Lake Pontchartrain Levee System and will join representatives from the Corps of Engineers, the Pontchartrain Levee District, and the Coastal Protection and Restoration Board to Washington, DC in the upcoming months to defend and support the recommended plan for the area.
“I am humbled and honored to receive such a prestigious award, but this would not have been possible without prayer, a strong support system of family and friends and committed staff members and employees,” said President Robottom. “This award is the result of a shared effort and vision for a better community and our work is not yet complete,” she added. The award will be presented to Robottom during the National Association of Counties 2014 conference closing session at the Morial Convention Center in New Orleans on Monday, July 14, 2014 at 2:00 p.m.
The subscribers of American City & County submit nominations for the County Leader of the Year Award and the magazine's editorial staff selects the award's recipient each year. The magazine provides over 70,000 readers from across the country with news, government trends, policy alternatives and operational solutions concerning state and local government.