Stuller Celebrates Earth Day 2023 By Being Parish Proud
Team Stuller is envisioning a brighter, cleaner future for our Lafayette community.
Earth Day is here once again! Tomorrow will mark 53 years of a global effort to demonstrate support for environmental protection and caring for the world we are charged with bettering. Approximately one billion people in more than 190 countries participate in events that celebrate the spirit of Earth Day with this year’s theme being Invest in Our Planet.
In the past, we’ve celebrated the occasion by talking about important topics within the jewelry industry that are relevant to Earth Day initiatives, namely recycled metals and sustainable practices. However, this year, I’d like to switch it up and talk about a passion of #TeamStuller and one of our nonprofit partners Parish Proud.
Parish Proud’s mission is to connect people to places and places to possibilities. They partner with people and businesses like Stuller to introduce placemaking — a collaborative, people-centered approach to creating a more vibrant, resilient, and thriving community — into the area. But this effort has humble beginnings as one of the many initiatives that locals have taken to make our home of Lafayette, Louisiana, a wonderful place to live, work, and play.
Taking Pride in Lafayette
Have you ever driven on a road in your town and seen trash on the side? Worse yet, have you ever actively witnessed someone throw garbage, perhaps a cigarette, out their window? How did that make you feel?
If you’re like Matt Stuller, our founder and CEO, you likely felt frustration and maybe even disappointment that members of your community would treat your home this way. Moments like these often inspire action.
As a lifelong Eagle Scout, Matt was inspired by a quote from Boy Scouts of America founder Sir Robert Baden-Powell: “Try to leave this world a little better than you found it.” That was his goal when he began Parish Proud.
Matt wanted to spark a conversation on the appearance of our landscape so that it matches the pride we have for our home. With Parish Proud, beautification is placed in the hands of our community members so that Lafayette remains a place we can be proud of.
Walking the Walk:
Fun Facts About Matt Stuller
- Matt has personally installed 400+ Parish Proud signs around the Lafayette area that encourages others to fight litter in our community.
- On his way into work each day, Matt picks up trash in Stuller’s parking lot.
- Matt keeps a vest and trash grabber in his vehicle, so he can pick up trash at any moment.
Setting a Standard
From the beginning, Parish Proud has always had a strong relationship with Stuller. Our employees often volunteer their time collecting trash surrounding our area and even provide financial support.
Since January 2021, more than 350 Stuller associates have collected 267 bags of trash in our community. That equates to 4,000 lbs. or two tons of trash! Additionally, so far this year, Stuller associates have made nearly $2,000 in company-matched donations to support Parish Proud’s mission.
“Employee donations have paid for many vests and grabbers for our volunteers,” says Chuck LaGrange, Parish Proud Chief Strategic Officer. “With thousands of volunteers throughout the year, this is no small impact.”:
LaGrange goes on to say, “Stuller is the gold standard for social responsibility. It’s the bar we set when speaking to other businesses about getting involved in our community.”
While Stuller and Parish Proud are continually supportive of anti-litter and beatification projects within our community, sights are being set higher for the future. From expanding bicycle lanes and improving city parks to re-envisioning the entrances and streetscapes of the city, the goal moving forward is simple — do the work needed to build a city we are all proud to call home.
Building the Future Together
Bringing us back to Earth Day, there is a lesson here for all of us. This home we have is our responsibility to care for. Our resources are finite, but our determination to build better communities will ensure our planet Earth can have a bright future — one that we build together.
Taylor holds degrees in Political Science and Communication from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette as well as multiple certifications from GIA. His years in the wedding industry and love of fashion trends helps him write content for the on-trend and creative jeweler.