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Tuesday, August 21, 2018
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Louisiana Public Square
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Panelist Bio


Stephen Moret
Secretary, Louisiana Economic Development

Appointed Louisiana Economic Development secretary by Gov. Bobby Jindal in January 2008, Stephen Moret has transformed LED into one of the nation’s top state economic development agencies. Under Moret’s leadership, LED has become a fast, creative and highly responsive partner for corporate executives and site selection consultants; a champion for small business and other existing Louisiana employers; and the architect of Louisiana’s economic renaissance. Some of LED’s top wins under Moret’s leadership include landing Louisiana’s fifth Fortune 1000 headquarters; attracting EA’s first North American Test Center; recruiting Nucor’s iron and steel production facility; landing two corporate headquarters expansion and retention projects by CenturyLink, the state’s largest Fortune 500 company; attracting a major GE Capital technology center to New Orleans; and establishing LED FastStart™, Louisiana’s highly acclaimed workforce development initiative.

Site Selection magazine recently ranked LED the best-performing state economic development agency in the U.S., and Business Facilities magazine ranked LED FastStart™ the top state workforce-training program in the country in 2010, 2011 and 2012. Southern Business & Development named Louisiana the magazine’s State of the Year or Co-State of the Year for three consecutive years (2009 through 2011). Since January 2008, Louisiana has improved to its highest-ever position on every ranking of state business climates by industry publications.

Secretary Moret earned a Bachelor of Science degree in mechanical engineering from Louisiana State University and he holds the Master of Business Administration degree from Harvard Business School, where he was the recipient of the Dean’s Award, an annual honor that celebrates the extraordinary achievements of graduating students who have made a positive impact on Harvard and broader communities.

Current Topic


     08/18 - The Power of Reading

How can we make inroads to improve adult literacy in Louisiana and champion a joy of reading from pre-school into adulthood?
The ability to read sets the foundation of who we are and what we can be. Through reading we expand our world, learn new things and increase our base of knowledge. In fact, a parent’s reading level is the greatest factor in a child’s academic success. Children who can’t read proficiently by the third grade are four times more likely to drop out of high school.

In Louisiana, 20 percent of adults are illiterate – five points higher than the national rate. How is Louisiana combatting its illiteracy problem across generational lines? How can we make inroads to improve adult literacy in Louisiana and champion a joy of reading from pre-school into adulthood?

Louisiana Public Square: The Power of Reading looks for answers and explores the value of lifelong reading through the lens of the PBS series The Great American Read Wednesday, August 22 at 7pm on LPB and in New Orleans on WLAE. (Recorded Tuesday, August 14 in the Magnolia Performing Arts Pavilion at Baton Rouge Community College.)

Our panelists are:
- Linda-Marie Barrett, Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance (SIBA)
- Rebecca Hamilton, MLIS; Louisiana State Librarian
- Danny Heitman; Journalist and Louisiana author
- Miranda Restovic, Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities (LEH).
- Gary Robertson; Adult Literacy Advocates

The program features interviews with John Cavalier, owner of Cavalier House Books; Gary Robertson, Executive Director of Adult Literacy Advocates; representatives from the LEH PRIME TIME intergenerational reading program, and Superintendent John White with the Louisiana Department of Education.

LPB CEO Beth Courtney and Robyn Merrick, Southern University VP of External Affairs, host the show.

Louisiana Public Square can also be heard on public radio stations WRKF in Baton Rouge; Red River Radio in Shreveport and Monroe; and WWNO in New Orleans. Check their station websites for schedule.

This episode of Louisiana Public Square is underwritten by Community Coffee’s Cash for Schools Program, the Louisiana Forestry Association, LSU Press and the Southern Independent Booksellers’ Authors Round the South.

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Special Presentation


     05/16 - Louisiana Veterans Coming Home

What challenges do our returning veterans face?

Coming Soon!


     09/18 - Revisiting Reform

Are the criminal justice reforms working as intended?

Recent Topics


     07/18 - Preventing Suicide

How is Louisiana addressing its suicide problem?

     06/18 - Louisiana: Sportsman’s Paradise or Problem?  (ENCORE)

Is Louisiana a Sportsman’s Paradise or Problem?

     05/18 - News About the News

How can viewers distinguish between fact and fake news and is social media blurring the difference?

     04/18 - Balancing Eldercare

How much does Louisiana spend on nursing homes versus home and community-based care?
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