Gracefully navigating between civic activism, political consulting and a diverse range of volunteer opportunities, Anne Redd looks and sounds the part of the role model she has become: put-together and passionate.
“People say ‘ask a busy person if you want to get something done,’” she notes. It is no wonder that Redd has accomplished so much – she is that busy person, constantly immersed in activities to better New Orleans.
After graduating from Tulane Law School in 1993, Redd worked for a small maritime law firm before marrying her husband, Edmund. While raising two daughters, she became engaged in civic work. Redd has been active on the boards of numerous local organizations including the Junior League of New Orleans, Meals on Wheels, the Louisiana Museum Foundation, Longue Vue House and Gardens, WYES and the Legacy Donor Foundation.
One can literally see Redd’s dedication to the community on the walls of its historic buildings; she’s the current President of the Board of the Preservation Resource Center. “Post-Katrina, we’ve restored more homes than any other volunteer group in the city,” she enthuses.
Hurricane Katrina is a poignant subject for Redd, who maintained her trademark optimism throughout its aftermath, using it as a vehicle for good. She worked with Women of the Storm and Citizens for 1 Greater New Orleans to raise awareness in Washington, D.C. and Baton Rouge, before stepping into the local political arena. “I helped Stacy Head with her 2006 city council campaign. Through a lot of hard work and dedication, she won that race.”
Although Redd never anticipated a career in politics, she took a position with Councilmember Head after her election because she “realized this was a great opportunity to really make a difference in our city.” During her six years at City Hall, she focused on economic development initiatives, zoning issues and reform legislation. She now works as a political consultant for Head and other candidates who are dedicated to public service.
Whether engaged in civic or political work, Redd is motivated by her commitment to the people of New Orleans. “You feel good when you go to sleep at night knowing that your organization made a difference in someone’s life that day.”
While helping one person at a time gives Redd the inspiration she needs, thousands of New Orleanians are continuously uplifted by her work. “My motto is be the change you want to see in the world,” she shares. By that standard, Redd has achieved remarkable success.
Mentor: My parents and my grandparents are my role models; they have shown a profound commitment to enhancing New Orleans through their activism, philanthropy and volunteerism. From a very young age, they instilled in me the importance of “giving back.”
Defining Moment: For all of us who live here in New Orleans, we will forever define our lives as “pre-Katrina” and “post-Katrina.” Following the storm, citizens from every demographic became involved in efforts to rebuild our city. This common sense of purpose and commitment reminded me what a difference every individual can make towards bettering our community.
Advice to Young Women: Join the Junior League. It will train you in volunteerism and open your eyes to opportunities for improving the lives of fellow New Orleanians. I am eternally thankful to the League for all the confidence it gave me to roll up my sleeves and get moving!
Goals: I will always stay committed to civic volunteerism; however, I also want to stay active in the political arena by helping young people to run for office. I will continuously strive to elect honest, smart, compassionate candidates.
Favorite Things about What I Do: Working with City Hall, local campaigns and different charitable groups enabled me to get to know New Orleanians from all walks of life. My closest friends tease me that I “know everybody,” but that’s because I’m out and about meeting new people every day. That is a fringe benefit I wouldn’t trade for anything in the world!