News Release

2017 Project Front Yard Award Winners Announced
Posted: 10/9/2017 6:00 PM
 

IBERIABANK’s downtown Lafayette headquarters was the setting for the fourth annual Project Front Yard (PFY) Awards on Thursday evening, October 5.
 
Since PFY’s inception in 2014, the community-wide beautification initiative has worked to highlight those who work tirelessly to improve the face of the community.  As a part of their ongoing commitment to PFY’s mission, IBERIABANK partnered once again to celebrate honorees at the event. The awards are given annually to recognize individuals and organizations in Lafayette for their efforts in community beautification.
 
“By sharing the hard work, the results and the enthusiasm of these honorees, we hope others are inspired to be a part of transforming our physical landscape to reflect the spirit of our citizens,” said Lafayette Mayor-President Joel Robideaux. “While we have a ways to go, these awards celebrate those who are already working towards that vision of a cleaner, more beautiful community.” 
 
According to IBERIABANK Acadiana President Jerry Vascocu, “Project Front Yard and those who have driven it have been tremendous in improving Lafayette's appearance and environment. IBERIABANK has been a proud sponsor of this effort since it began, and it was a privilege to host the awards ceremony and highlight this year's winners. It is our hope that this program continues to grow and advance our landscape."
 
Four winners were recognized, which include individuals, community groups and businesses:
  • Best Overall Project Front Yard Effort was presented to Keller Williams Realty of Acadiana (KWRA) which partnered with PFY and the McComb-Veazey Neighborhood Coterie to plant its first crop at the new McComb-Veazey community farm. With nearly 100 individuals giving more than five hours of their time, KWRA volunteers planted more than an acre of produce. The crop was harvested this past summer, creating the neighborhood's first farmer's market and providing access to fresh produce for the community which is currently in a food desert. During this same day, KWRA volunteers also pressure washed and repainted the Heymann Park Pavilion, benches and playground equipment. In other beautification and cleanliness efforts, Keller Williams Realty of Acadiana adopted the Beaumont, TX area to support relief and recovery work for Hurricane Harvey victims.
  • Best in Cleanliness was presented to Cindy Dilena with Love Acadiana for efforts with Eight Days of Hope (EDOH). Dilena worked with EDOH, Lafayette Consolidated Government (LCG), the Diocese of Lafayette, United Way of Acadiana and Acadiana VOAD to bring more than 2,000 volunteers from 40 states and multiple countries to assist with the recovery efforts following the great flood of August 2016. In all, more than 135 homeowners received much-needed help in gutting and rebuilding their flood-wrecked homes. Dilena also brokered a groundbreaking partnership with RH (formerly known as Restoration Hardware) to provide new furniture to 80 flooded families. In total, Dilena’s efforts culminated in more than $4M in completed flood recovery and community-based projects.
  • Best in Beautification was presented to Tina Shelvin Bingham, for her work with the McComb-Veazey Neighborhood Coterie. As the chairperson of the coterie, she has worked to mobilize residents to revitalize McComb-Veazey as one of the oldest neighborhoods in Lafayette. Bingham has successfully applied for and received grant funding totaling $295,000 from the Kresge Foundation and Keep America Beautiful (KAB). The grant funding will be used to transform an adjudicated property into a neighborhood community center with a satellite library, create an edible music park on a vacant lot, and turn four acres of property into a community farm.
  • Best in Education was presented to Catherine Comeaux for her work with No Waste Louisiana and the Lafayette Parish School System’s (LPSS) recycling program. Comeaux was instrumental in facilitating the implementation of the LPSS recycling program and she formed the Lafayette chapter of No Waste Louisiana – an environmental education organization that works with individuals, businesses and government to reduce needless and avoidable waste in our daily lives. Comeaux is currently providing support to Festivals Acadiens et Créoles in becoming the first green festival in Louisiana. 

Pictured L-R: Tara Bienvenu-Keller Williams Realty of Acadiana, Catherine Comeaux-No Waste Louisiana, Lafayette Chapter, Skyra Rideaux-Project Front Yard Coordinator, Tina Bingham-McComb-Veazey Neighborhood Coterie, Mickie Hughes-Love Acadiana, Mayor-President Joel Robideaux.

Visit www.projectfrontyard.com to view photos from the 2017 PFY Awards and to learn how to get involved.
 
Taking the lead from more than forty action items in Lafayette’s Comprehensive Plan, PFY’s mission is to build awareness and stimulate improvement of the face of the community. Initiatives under PFY include revitalization of gateways, improved streetscapes, litter removal and prevention, public art, river cleanup, and education. In the three years since its launch, PFY has gained regional momentum beyond Lafayette Parish, expanding into Acadia, Iberia, and St. Martin Parishes.