As my husband and I drove our family on our cross-country adventure to Colorado this summer, we passed through a fair representation of the geography of our beautiful country. The bayous and rolling hills of South and North Louisiana, the prairie cattle country of the Texas Panhandle, the scrub-filled mesas of New Mexico, and finally the lofty mountain peaks of the San Juan Mountains in Colorado all passed by our car windows. It is humbling when you see such sights and realize that you are but a tiny dot in all of that space. It is hard to think that as a tiny dot any individual could affect positive change in her community. The problems may be too big, the cause too difficult, or the topic too controversial for one person to tackle. But change always has to start somewhere or with someone.

I am asking all of our members to “Be A Hero” this year both individually and collectively as the Junior League of New Orleans. Being a hero is not always measured by the effort put forth but in the effect felt.

In 1987, I was rear-ended in a car accident on St. Charles Avenue, and I will never forget the woman who came up to me as I sat dazed, upset and alone on the street. I had never seen her before, and I haven’t seen her since, but she stopped to offer me words of comfort and helped me stay strong until my family arrived. Small actions can have a big impact on a person you randomly meet and help or in the case of the League, training capable volunteers to go out in our community and work to help women and families better their circumstances. We have almost 93 years of putting on our capes and having the courage to make a difference in our community.

From the mother who relies on diapers from the Diaper Bank to the families of the infants whose car seats we funded through our Community Assistance Fund grants, we are those heroes in our community. There is a meme on the internet which I love, and it says, “I’m not saying I’m Wonder Woman, but you’ve never seen us in the same room.”

You are all “Wonder Women” to me. We are 2,200 dots in the universe working to make New Orleans a greater community. Thank you for putting on your capes.


Letter from the President

Maria Pardo Huete
Junior League of New Orleans President 2016-2017