An historic milestone in the LEH’s 43 year history was recently achieved, via the fourth year renewal of the “The Shell-LEH National Gulf States PRIME TIME Initiative.” This unprecedented multi-year initiative is delivering outcomes-driven family literacy/critical thinking (PRIME TME Family Reading Time) and teacher professional development programming (PRIME TIME HomeRoom) to thousands of children, parents, and educators across Louisiana, as well as in four other Gulf South states: Texas, Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida.

The Shell Oil Company and Foundation’s latest gift of $175,000 for Year Four of the partnership brings the company’s total investment in PRIME TIME to $808,000. When combined with more than $400,000 in matching support from the LEH and its partnering institutions, the initiative easily surpasses the $1 million mark for total investment and impact. Continue reading SHELL-PRIME TIME PARTNERSHIP EXCEEDS $1 MILLION

LEH Welcomes new NEH Chairman

On July 23, William “Bro” Adams was sworn in as the new NEH Chairman. Nominated in April by President Obama, Chairman Adams  is a native of Birmingham, Michigan, and son of an auto industry executive. He earned his undergraduate degree in philosophy at Colorado College and a Ph.D. from the University of California at Santa Cruz History of Consciousness Program. He studied in France as a Fulbright Scholar before beginning his career in higher education with appointments to teach political philosophy at Santa Clara University in California and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He went on to coordinate the Great Works in Western Culture program at Stanford University and to serve as vice president and Secretary of Wesleyan University. He became president of Bucknell University in 1995 and president of Colby College in 2000.

The LEH welcomes Chairman Adams. We look forward to meeting him at the 2014 National Humanities Conference in Philadelphia.

Mississippi Humanities Reconnects with PRIME TIME

misshumThe Mississippi Humanities Council (MHC) has returned to PRIME TIME! In 1997, during the earliest phase of PRIME TIME’s national expansion, the MHC became the first statewide agency to partner with the Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities on the PRIME TIME project. Through a grant from LEH, the Canton Public Library became the first site in the state to present this innovative program. As part of the current “Shell-LEH National Gulf States PRIME TIME Initiative,” MHC will implement approximately six PRIME TIME Family Reading Time programs over twelve months.  Continue reading Mississippi Humanities Reconnects with PRIME TIME

New efforts to honor Amédé Ardoin

Amede Ardin011.tifEfforts are underway to honor one of Louisiana’s most influential recording artists, Amédé Ardoin (1898–1941)  a Creole musician who merits a biographical entry in KnowLA, The Digital Encyclopedia of Louisiana ( Ardoin was a seminal but mysterious figure in Louisiana history, and he remains something of an enigma since he met an unfortunate fate in the last years of his life as an incarcerated mental patient at Central Louisiana Hospital in Pineville.

Former state poet laureate Darrell Bourque recently published a collection of inverted sonnets dedicated to Ardoin, entitled If you abandon me, comment je vas faire: An Amédé Ardoin Songbook, selections of which will appear in the Fall 2014 edition of Louisiana Cultural Vistas.  Continue reading New efforts to honor Amédé Ardoin

PRIME Time Preschool Grants Available for NW and SE Louisiana Sites


PRIME TIME is pleased to announce the availability of an early childhood program grant aimed at improving school readiness and reading habits amongst preschool aged children and their families.

Deadline:  Friday, August 1, 2014

Award Announcement:  Friday, August 8, 2014

Grant Value:  app. $12,000 annually

Grant Period:  3 years (Fall 2014 – Spring 2017)

Minimum Programming:  2 preschool programs annually

Eligible Applicants:

Licensed childcare facilities and schools with preschool programs serving educationally and economically vulnerable families. Continue reading PRIME Time Preschool Grants Available for NW and SE Louisiana Sites

LEH Debuts new website for quarterly magazine


Founded in 1990, Louisiana Cultural Vistas documents the unparalleled culture and diverse history of Louisiana. Our writers, scholars, photographers and artists continue to explore our state’s communities, delivering stories, photographs and reflections on what it means to live here. The LEH is proud to celebrate a quarter century in print with a new digital platform.

At, we’ll showcase select feature articles, columns and reviews from recent issues, along with classics from our archives and exclusive web content. We’re committed to the vibrant print version of the magazine; the new site aspires to enrich the experience of our loyal readership.

The Summer 2014 issue hits mailboxes and newsstands this week. Renew your subscription today!

thanks, bellwether!

LEH VP for Institutional Advancement Jeff Hale joins Bellwether staff in Lafayette Square
Bellwether’s (from left) Patrick Beahm (Relationship Manager), Steven Ellis (Vice President), Caroline Graham (Executive Assistant), Jeff Saint-Saens (Communications Manager) and Padmapriya Riva (intern)  join LEH VP for Institutional Advancement Jeff Hale (third from right)   in Lafayette Square

Our partners at Bellwether Technology continue to provide excellent IT services for our staff at Turners’ Hall. And at the YLC’s Wednesday’s at the Square in New Orleans, they provided incredible hospitality! At the summer’s final concert at Lafayette Square on June 11th, the Bellwether hospitality tent was the place to be. Thanks to everyone at Bellwether for several weeks of wonderful hospitality – and a fantastic professional partnership. We hope to see you on the Square again for the Harvest the Music series this fall!


LEH Interim Executive Director/President MIranda Restovic enjoys the evening
Patrick Beahm of Bellwether and LEH Interim Executive Director/President MIranda Restovic enjoy the evening