CWPPRA Personal Reflections: Environmental Portraits and Oral Histories of Louisiana’s Coastal Wetlands Stakeholders

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  • The goal of CWPPRA’s Personal Reflections Project is to capture the lives and stories of Louisiana residents who have been stewards of the wetlands and storytellers who open the door to the world of habitat protection and preservation. Each person has a unique tale, but the Louisiana wetlands have been a part of all of their lives.    We invite you to learn more about these coastal caretakers. We have tried to capture our Louisiana guardians in two ways; the first with an environmental portrait and the  second with an oral history.

Interviewee Collection Sort descending Description Interviewer Date of Interview Location of Interview Affiliation
Davie Breaux CWPPRA Personal Reflections: Environmental Portraits and Oral Histories of Louisiana’s Coastal Wetlands Stakeholders

Davie Breaux is a native of South Louisiana, born and raised in Galiano, and has spent his life working in and around the coastal region. He is the Director of Operations for the Greater Lafourche Port Commission, a position he has held for 16 years, overseeing the construction and development of the port itself. Prior to this, he worked in the construction industry, gaining valuable experience as a draftsman for architects and engineers and later working for a general contractor for 14 years.

Susan Testroet-Bergeron Port Fourchon, LA Coastal Wetlands Planning, Protection and Restoration Act
Cindy Cutrera CWPPRA Personal Reflections: Environmental Portraits and Oral Histories of Louisiana’s Coastal Wetlands Stakeholders

Cindy Cutrera is a lifelong resident of Morgan City, Louisiana, born in December 1956. She is married to a man who is also a lifetime resident of the city, and together they have three daughters. Two of her daughters live in the area, while the third resides in Lafayette, Louisiana. Cutrera's family has a strong connection to the local community and the natural environment, often camping at Lake End Park and participating in local gatherings.

Cole Ruckstuhl Morgan City, LA Coastal Wetlands Planning, Protection and Restoration Act
Eddie Joseph Sapia, Jr. CWPPRA Personal Reflections: Environmental Portraits and Oral Histories of Louisiana’s Coastal Wetlands Stakeholders

Eddie Joseph Sapia, Jr. was born on March 27, 1934, in New Orleans, Louisiana. He spent his entire life in Lafitte, Louisiana, a small town nestled in the state's coastal wetlands. As a child, he was deeply influenced by his grandfather, who introduced him to the local fishing and trapping practices. Despite his father's insistence on formal education, Sapia found his true calling in the outdoors, particularly in the wetlands, that he grew to love. He began working on boats at an early age, driving his grandfather's vessels and learning the intricacies of the local waterways.

Susan Testroet-Bergeron, Lane Lefort Lafitte, LA Coastal Wetlands Planning, Protection and Restoration Act
Marietta Smith-Greene CWPPRA Personal Reflections: Environmental Portraits and Oral Histories of Louisiana’s Coastal Wetlands Stakeholders

Mrs. Green was born in New Orleans, Louisiana on October 18, 1935. Her grandfather, Jim Webb, managed her father-in-laws land for 50 years. After his passing, Mrs. Green along with her cousin, Skip Haller, took over the management of the land which spans seven parishes. Upon realizing the devastation facing the land, Mrs. Green began working with CWPPRA to restore the land. She has been a wetlands and coastal restoration advocate since then.

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Susan Testroet-Bergeron New Orleans, LA Coastal Wetlands Planning, Protection and Restoration Act
Kerry St. Pé CWPPRA Personal Reflections: Environmental Portraits and Oral Histories of Louisiana’s Coastal Wetlands Stakeholders

Mr. St. Pé was born in New Orleans, Louisiana on June 15, 1950. He has lived in Southeast Louisiana his entire life. He is a biologist. He worked for Water Pollution and Control under the Department of Wildlife and Fisheries and later under the Department of Environmental Quality starting in 1974. Mr. St. Pé was appointed to be on the scientific technical committee of the Estuary program and was later elected Chairman. He currently works for the Barataria-Terrebonne National Estuary Program. Mr. St.

Susan Testroet-Bergeron Raceland, LA Coastal Wetlands Planning, Protection and Restoration Act
Susan Lauderman CWPPRA Personal Reflections: Environmental Portraits and Oral Histories of Louisiana’s Coastal Wetlands Stakeholders

Mrs. Lauderman was born in New Orleans, Louisiana on December 14, 1937. She grew up in Orleans and Jefferson Parishes. She attended St. Martin’s Episcopal School in Metarie, Louisiana. She worked as a social worker. She currently encourages students to get more involved in wetlands preservation through the use of oral histories.

Susan Testroet-Bergeron New Orleans, LA Coastal Wetlands Planning, Protection and Restoration Act
Sherrill Sagrera CWPPRA Personal Reflections: Environmental Portraits and Oral Histories of Louisiana’s Coastal Wetlands Stakeholders

Sherrill Sagrera is an advocate for the preservation and restoration of Louisiana's coastal wetlands. Born on November 12, 1941, in Abbeville, Louisiana, Sherrill grew up in Cheniere au Tigre, an island in South Vermillion Parish. His family's connection to this ecosystem goes back generations, as they owned and managed land that was once a thriving resort community. Sherrill witnessed the island's evolution from a bustling community with a hotel, dance hall, and school to a region grappling with wetland loss and environmental challenges.

Susan Testroet-Bergeron Abbeville, LA Coastal Wetlands Planning, Protection and Restoration Act
Buddy Daisy & Earl Melancon CWPPRA Personal Reflections: Environmental Portraits and Oral Histories of Louisiana’s Coastal Wetlands Stakeholders

Mr. Walton "Buddy" Daisy was born in 1944 in Houma, Louisiana, where he has lived his entire life. He began working in the oyster industry at the age of sixteen, following the death of his father when he was twelve years old. Daisy started his career in the oyster industry by working for his brother to help support his mother. Over the years, he has witnessed significant changes in the industry, particularly in terms of regulations and the shift from a focus on winter oyster harvesting to a year-round operation.

Susan Testroet-Bergeron, Lane Lefort Houma, LA Coastal Wetlands Planning, Protection and Restoration Act
Brenda Dardar Robichaux CWPPRA Personal Reflections: Environmental Portraits and Oral Histories of Louisiana’s Coastal Wetlands Stakeholders

Brenda Dardar Robichaux, born on October 15, 1958, in New Orleans, Louisiana, is a prominent figure in the United Houma Nations, having served as the Principal Chief. She spent her childhood in the south end of Golden Meadow, below the corporation limits of the town of Golden Meadow, and has lived most of her adult life in Lafourche Parish and Raceland. Robichaux's connection to Louisiana's wetlands is deeply rooted in her family's history and traditions. Her grandfather was a trapper, hunter, and farmer who used plants from the local environment for traditional medicine.

Susan Testroet-Bergeron Raceland, LA Coastal Wetlands Planning, Protection and Restoration Act
Yancy Welch CWPPRA Personal Reflections: Environmental Portraits and Oral Histories of Louisiana’s Coastal Wetlands Stakeholders

Yancy William Welch, born on December 9, 1965, in Lake Charles, Louisiana, is a lifelong resident of Oak Grove, a small town located approximately 40 miles away. Raised in a family deeply rooted in the rural traditions of Louisiana's wetlands, Welch's upbringing was characterized by a strong sense of community and family involvement in shared tasks, such as gardening and cattle rearing. His family's livelihood was primarily based on agriculture and hunting, with his father working as a school teacher to supplement their income.

Susan Testroet-Bergeron Oak Grove, LA Coastal Wetlands Planning, Protection and Restoration Act