Presidential Message

Goodwill Presidential Message

Dear Friends,

Here at Goodwill Industries of Southeastern Louisiana, we’ve seen firsthand the difference goodwill can make—not only in giving new life to gently used clothing, household goods, and other discards, but also in offering new hope and opportunity to thousands of deserving individuals.

Since 1947, your local Goodwill has opened the door of opportunity for people with disabilities, disadvantages, or other barriers to employment. As part of a network of independent Goodwill organizations, we demonstrate on a daily basis the power of our shared philosophy: “transformation through work.”

Our service model—a hand up, not a handout—was inspired by the founder of the original Goodwill Industries, Rev. Edgar J. Helms, a Methodist minister from Boston, Massachusetts, who in 1902 began collecting used household goods and clothing in wealthier areas of the city, then training unemployed persons to mend and repair the goods, paying them from the sales of the refurbished products. This social enterprise was so successful that Goodwill Industries International has since expanded to 15 foreign countries and 165 cities in the United States and Canada. Although every Goodwill shares a common philosophy of assisting people in their efforts to gain employment, each Goodwill is autonomous, allowing the individual agencies to respond to the needs of their particular communities.

Our most recent development was the Louisiana Board of Regents’ approval of our application to operate a proprietary school, which opened in September 2015. The school offers training in C-Tech (broadband technology), S.T.A.R.T. (hospitality industry), Microsoft Office certification, and computer literacy, along with job readiness and mentoring support. As a certified proprietary school, we’re also able to offer these services to the entire community—particularly individuals who don’t qualify for other training programs due to lacking a high school diploma or GED. These vocational training programs will not only help individuals prepare for a path out of poverty, they will also help businesses and consumers gain access to qualified employees and service professionals.

We have also expanded our vocational rehabilitation services for people with disabilities to Baton Rouge. Of course, what we make possible is an extension of what YOU make possible through your donations. Without your continued support of Goodwill’s mission, we would not be able to say yes to citizens who want nothing more than a chance to work, pay their own way, and contribute to the life of our community. Thanks to your goodwill, they can.

William L. Jessee
President & CEO

Our Vision

We at Goodwill Industries will be satisfied only when every person in the global community has the opportunity to achieve his/her fullest potential as an individual and to participate and contribute fully in all aspects of a productive life.

Our Values

Respect for those we serve
Service to the individual
Assumption of responsibility by the individual (a hand-up, not a handout)
Quality service
Thinking globally and acting locally
The Power of Work
Stewardship, financial responsibility, and efficient use of resources
Autonomy of the member organization
Best practices and innovation