New Prosperity Center Offers Economic Hope, Helping Hand for New Orleanians

Published: 12/20/2017

Entergy Corporation, United Way of Southeast Louisiana and the City of New Orleans partner to foster brighter futures for local residents.

Opportunity knocks on a new door in New Orleans: the United Way of Southeast Louisiana's J. Wayne Leonard Prosperity Center. Named in honor of Entergy Corporation's longest-serving chairman and CEO, the center was established with the support of generous donors, including a $2 million contribution comprised of a personal gift of $1 million from Wayne Leonard matched by Entergy.

The center is a one-stop resource connecting low-to-moderate-income individuals and families to employment and financial capability services. UWSLA and its partner, the City of New Orleans’ Network for Economic Opportunity, expect to assist approximately 2,000 participants in its first year.

Learn what local leaders have to say about the center below.

Leonard is recognized as the center's namesake for serving as a champion for underprivileged customers during his 14 years of leadership before retiring in 2013. At the same time, he streamlined Entergy's interests to the core objective of providing affordable, reliable electricity, led recovery from Hurricane Katrina and steered Entergy to record profitability.

Realizing the Fortune 500 company could make a real difference for customers and communities, Leonard also spearheaded Entergy’s corporate social responsibility program, sharpening its focus on educational, health and financial empowerment opportunities for the 25 percent of customers living in poverty.

Today, Leonard’s vision continues to have a positive impact on customers and communities as Entergy shareholders invest approximately $16 million annually in community improvement programs through partners like United Way. The company is regularly noted on lists like The Civic 50 and 100 Best Corporate Citizens.

"It has been an honor and privilege to play a role in powering people’s lives, whether by providing electricity or offering a helping hand," said Leonard. "I am pleased that Entergy has contributed to the sustainability of the Prosperity Center, which will give local residents access to the kind of critical services that can be life changing. As lives change for the better, so do communities."

Ann Becker

Corporate Editorial Team