Daily Point of Light # 1711 Aug 24, 2000

The name Guy Recotta Jr. is synonymous with volunteerism in Hammond, Louisiana. Reaching people and serving others is what Mr. Recotta is all about. His choice of professions attests to his love and concern for others. Just after graduate school, he began working at a residential facility for the physically and mentally challenged. He thought he was making a career choice, but now he realizes it was a lifestyle choice as well.

The Special Olympics has a special place in Recotta’s life and heart. He has been a trainer and chaperone to Special Olympians on the local, state, regional and international level. For a dozen years, the Louisiana Special Olympics were held in Hammond and Recotta was the Games Director. He has been a member of the Louisiana Board of Special Olympics and he initiated a project called “Walk Down One” in which volunteers walk down Highway One from the most northern part of the state to the shores of the Gulf collecting pledges along the way. His goal was to collect donations as well as raising the awareness of the Games and the contributions the mentally and physically challenged can make to society.

Recotta was also instrumental in spearheading and organizing the first Hospice organization in the area after a terminally ill friend of his who wanted to spend his last days at home had no professional group to turn to for assistance. After his friend passed away, Recotta was instrumental in starting the Richard Murphy Hospice, and more than $40,000 was raised that year; and all of the donations went to the care of clients. Since its inception in 1984, the donations to the Richard Murphy Hospice have increased, and it is just one of a number of legacies Recotta can be proud of founding.

In 1992, Recotta recognized the need for housing for low-income families. A church group approached him, and they organized the first Habitat for Humanity organization in the area. Recotta has organized many fundraisers such as a Thrift Shop, baseball tournament and a birdhouse auction. His innovative fundraising events have raised more than $10,000 for Habitat. Since 1992, the organization has built five homes for 25 adults and children.

For many years, Recotta has also been involved with the Hammond Chamber of Commerce where education issues and small business concerns have been his primary focus. He was recently installed as President, and as chair of the steering committee of the first Southeast Regional Economic Summit, he united community leaders, educators, area businesses and regional and national speakers with interested citizens to address and plan for the needs of their community for the future.

Currently, Recotta is employed as the Clerk of the Court for the Seventh Ward. He uses his time to visit area high schools and universities and informs students of the laws that directly affect them. His proactive approach had educated many youth and their parents and he hopes it keeps them from meeting in a courtroom. Recotta is also a member of the Mayor’s Strategic Planning Commission. He led a building fund drive to build a new church and surpassed his goal of $3 million. His efforts earned him recognition from the Holy Ghost School and Southeastern University as Distinguished Alumnus of the Year. He was also a Hammond Junior Auxiliary Hall of Fame Honoree in 1991.