(Press Release reprinted from NHMSC)

Two $500,000 gifts bring dream of national museum two giant steps closer to reality

The efforts to make this new facility and Center a reality is exemplary of the organizers and coastal communities that have seen the need for this for many years. (Tim Osborn, NOAA)

“The efforts to make this new facility and Center a reality is exemplary of the organizers and coastal communities that have seen the need for this for many years.” (Quote and photo by Tim Osborn, NOAA)

Lake Charles, La.: 2 December 2014 – Entergy and State Farm co-hosted an event to present checks of $500,000 each to the National Hurricane Museum & Science Center (NHMSC). This $1,000,000 will go a long way in reaching the center’s fund raising capital contribution target to build this one-of-a-kind education center along the shoreline of Lake Charles. The National Hurricane Museum & Science Center’s mission is to tell the story of the impact of hurricanes on the people, land and economy of the nation. State Farm and Entergy share the Center’s goal of educating the public on the importance of hurricane preparedness and the urgency of building storm-resistant communities. Mr. Phillip R. May, President and CEO of Entergy Louisiana, along with state Senator (La – Dist.27), Ronnie Johns, CEO of Ronnie Johns State Farm Insurance Agency, and State Farm Vice President Agency-Sales, Mark Cockerham of Baton Rouge, each spoke at the check presentation event held at the proposed site adjacent to the Lake Charles Civic Center. Each leader challenged the corporate and community leaders in attendance to join them in their support of this NHMSC project. “At Entergy we recognize that preparation for tomorrow begins today,” said Phillip May, CEO and President for Entergy’s Louisiana utilities. “Our $500,000 donation to the National Hurricane Museum and Science Center will provide the necessary building blocks to take on that challenge and provide our communities with new protective technologies to help better predict and weather storms.”

A strong advocate of the project, Senator Johns of Sulphur, said, “At State Farm we have known firsthand, along with the residents of all of Louisiana, the devastation brought about by coastal storms and hurricanes. These storms have had an immeasurable impact on the lives of coastal residents, as well as an impact in the multiplied billions of dollars on state and national economies. This Museum and Science Center will be an important education piece going forward.” State Farm’s Mark Cockerham said, “I want to commend Chairman Stream, the NHMSC Board, and Senator Johns, as well as many others, for their vision and dedication to bring the National Hurricane Museum and Science Center into being. Education, awareness, a better understanding of building models and storm resistant construction, as well as a better understanding of some of the natural risks and challenges inherent for coastal communities, are just some of the needs this effort will help address.”

Today’s two donations become part of the $38 million raised to date to build and open the facility. In the 2014 session of the Louisiana legislature, lawmakers approved over $28 million in funding support for the National Hurricane Museum & Science Center (www.NHMSC.com). “Our board members realized early on that, in order for this project to be a success, we needed these two powerful corporations’ stamps of approval, to lend their iconic brand names to the National Hurricane Museum & Science Center” said Gray Stream, Chairman of the NHMSC Board of Directors.“Entergy and State Farm employees live and work with communities on a daily basis, and are always at the front lines when storms strike all over America. Who better to lead and help tell the preparedness and recovery story than these two giants? We believe with this type of continuous outpouring of support, we will soon see this Center built right where we are standing today,” Stream concluded.

Entergy donates $500,000 towards the National Hurricane Museum and Science Center.

Entergy donates $500,000 towards the National Hurricane Museum and Science Center. (Photo credit: Tim Osborn, NOAA)

About ENTERGY (www.entergy.com)

Entergy’s Louisiana, LLC and Entergy Gulf States Louisiana, L.L.C. provide electric service to more than one million Louisiana customers. Additionally, Entergy Gulf States Louisiana provides natural gas service to nearly 93,000 customers in the greater Baton Rouge area. With operations in southern, central and northeastern Louisiana, the companies are subsidiaries of Entergy Corporation. Entergy Corporation is an integrated energy company engaged primarily in electric power production and retail distribution operations. Entergy owns and operates power plants with approximately 30,000 megawatts of electric generating capacity, including more than 10,000 megawatts of nuclear power, making it one of the nation’s leading nuclear generators. Entergy delivers electricity to 2.8 million utilitycustomers in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas. Entergy has annual revenues of more than $11 billion and approximately 14,000 employees. In 2013, Entergy shareholders donated more than $6.2 million to almost 1,000 nonprofit agencies in communities across Louisiana. We focus our primary philanthropic efforts on three areas: education, poverty solutions and environmental programs.

State Farm also donates $500,000 to the National Hurricane Museum and Science Center.

State Farm also donates $500,000 to the National Hurricane Museum and Science Center. NHMSC Board Chairman, Gray Stream, thanks the group for the support. (Photo credit: Tim Osborn, NOAA)

About STATE FARM (www.statefarm.com)

State Farm and its affiliates are the largest provider of car insurance in the U.S. In addition to providing auto insurance quotes, 18,000 agents and more than 65,000 employees serve almost 84 million policies and accounts – approximately 82 million auto, home, life, health and commercial policies in the United States and Canada, and nearly 2 million bank accounts. State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company is the parent of the State Farm family of companies. State Farm is ranked No. 41 on the 2014 Fortune 500 list of largest companies. For more information, please visit http://www.statefarm.com.

About NHMSC (www.NHMSC.com )

The National Hurricane Museum & Science Center, as the name suggests, is a hybrid organization: part museum because it will chronicle the history and social meanings of hurricanes through collections and archives; with a larger emphasis on the science center and educational aspects, because it will use interactive and immersive experiences to explore the science and impacts of hurricanes as powerful forces of nature. To be located on the waterfront of Lake Charles, Louisiana, this center will be an irresistible destination for the entire Gulf region. Utilizing the science of hurricanes, the NHMSC will work with K-12 schools to stimulate the learning of basic math and science. Through practical, digital and engaging education, the NHMSC will tell the natural and social story of hurricanes and the wetlands environment while delivering memorable experiences to thousands of visitors.

CONTACTS:

Jill Kidder, NHMSC Consulting Project Coordinator
225.803.7033 jill.kidder@nhmsc.com
Gary Stephenson, State Farm Regional Spokesperson
501.350.4440 gary.stephenson.a9ef@statefarm.com
Sheila Pounders, Entergy Director of Customer Service
225.346.3933 spounde@Entergy.com

Gulf of Mexico Coastal Ocean Observing System (GCOOS) Outreach and Education Manager, Dr. Chris Simoniello, is a member of the Outreach and Education Team for the NHMSC. Dr. Robert Sullivan, Chora Creative, is working on the NHMSC and is also a GCOOS Regional Association Board Member, representing the Outreach and Education sector.

 

To see a short KPLC TV Video on the NHMSC event: http://www.kplctv.com/story/27526822/entergy-state-farm-donate-1m-toward-national-hurricane-museum

To watch the video of the event on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pFyMxw_196s&feature=youtu.be&list=UUBR0uJKc9xIz1p2DHjTyJbw