August Young Professional Spotlight

Meet Priscilla Simpson

Occupation: Director of Events & Operations

Organization: Shaw Center for the Arts

Tell us a little about your Baton Rouge Story. What brought you to Baton Rouge? 

My best childhood memories are of visiting family in Baton Rouge. Every time we rounded the big curve on I-110 South to see the State Capitol, I knew Baton Rouge would eventually become my home. Attending LSU was an easy decision, and the connections I made there led to a career in the Baton Rouge nonprofit sector. 

Tell us more about how you’re involved in Baton Rouge (job or organizations). 

For nearly nine years, I have been the director of events and operations at Shaw Center for the Arts in downtown Baton Rouge. I am incredibly passionate about the arts and helping people plan and celebrate events. Additionally, I currently serve as the president and am a founding board member of the Baton Rouge Events Association (BREA). 

What is your favorite thing about Baton Rouge? 

The quirky atmosphere and growth of Mid-City. 

What is your dream for Baton Rouge? 

My dream for Baton Rouge is for the revitalization and growth of the downtown Baton Rouge area to further connect to its neighboring communities. Positive improvements that also preserve the history, culture, and artistic essence of these neighborhoods will grow the workforce in these areas and give professionals an incentive to not only invest their businesses in the City of Baton Rouge, but to invest residentially in the metropolitan areas of our city. 

How are young professionals like yourself shaping Baton Rouge? 

The work of young professionals does not stop with their careers and networking. It is so important for young professionals to also live in the urban areas of Baton Rouge and engage their families in the social and cultural development of their neighborhoods, which shape Baton Rouge as a whole. 

What would you say to someone considering a move to Baton Rouge? 

That it is possible for families to live in the urban areas of Baton Rouge and have access to high performing public schools without moving to suburban areas or feeling private schools are the only option. The expansion and promotion of school choice is one of the most notable, yet understated, improvements to the greater Baton Rouge Area, as it provides broader high-quality educational opportunities through charter schools, magnet programs, school vouchers, foreign language immersion schools, and Montessori programs. 

What is your Baton Rouge favorite? 

– Place to eat: Bistro Byronz 

– Place to hang out: GymFit Adventure Community Center 

– Place to capture the perfect Instagram pic: Rooftop at Tsunami 

– Place to people watch: City Park 

– Place to network: Baton Rouge Events Association Meetings 

– Way to give back: Supporting local artists and art events 

– Event: Fête Rouge 

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