Flags at Half-Staff--Former Governor Kathleen Babineaux Blanco
WHEREAS, former Governor Kathleen Babineaux Blanco died on August 18, 2019, at the age of 76;
WHEREAS, on January 12, 2004, Kathleen Babineaux Blanco was sworn in as the 54th governor of the state of Louisiana and the state’s first female governor;
WHEREAS, in her long, distinguished career, Governor Blanco served the people with a vision of creating a new Louisiana, filled with hope and opportunity for all citizens;
WHEREAS, Governor Blanco led Louisiana through some of the state’s darkest hours during and in the aftermath of hurricanes Katrina and Rita, when she fought for and succeeded in securing increased funding to help Louisianans rebuild their homes, reopen their businesses and reconstruct billions worth of damaged infrastructure, providing a way for Louisianans to emerge from those disasters stronger and more resilient;
WHEREAS, Governor Blanco was a champion for Louisiana’s children and families, prioritizing affordable healthcare, improving the state’s education system, and fostering a vibrant economy;
WHEREAS, always a trailblazer, she began her career as a public servant in 1984, when she became the first woman ever elected to represent the people of Lafayette in the state Legislature and was elected to the Public Service Commission five years later, where she became the first woman to serve as a Commissioner and, later, as the first woman to chair the Commission;
WHEREAS, before serving in the state's top office, Governor Blanco completed two terms as Lieutenant Governor, focusing on increasing tourism to the state;
WHEREAS, for 55 years, she was married to her loving husband and biggest supporter, Raymond and together they raised six children and are the proud grandparents of 13 grandchildren; and
Whereas, Governor Blanco was a woman of abiding faith and unconditional love for her family, this state, and the people she served, and while she will be greatly missed, the legacy she leaves behind because of her work on behalf of Louisiana will live on for generations to come.
NOW THEREFORE, I, JOHN BEL EDWARDS, Governor of the State of Louisiana, by virtue of the authority vested by the Constitution and laws of the State of Louisiana, do hereby order and direct as follows:
SECTION 1: As an expression of respect and to honor former Governor Kathleen Babineaux Blanco, the flags of the United States and the State of Louisiana shall be flown at half-staff over the State Capitol and all state buildings from August 19, 2019, through August 24, 2019.
SECTION 2: This Order is effective upon signature and shall remain in effect until sunset, August 24, 2019.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have set my hand officially and caused to be affixed the Great Seal of Louisiana in the City of Baton Rouge, on this 18th day of August.
John Bel Edwards
Secretary of State