When Mike Cooper took on the role of St. Tammany Parish President at the beginning of 2020, he could never have foreseen the events that the nation would soon face. Like any good leader, however, he was ready to meet whatever challenges came his way, ever mindful of the impact his decisions would have on the parish under his watch.
As a nation, we’ve been stalled by COVID-19 and the many ways it has devastated us—whether emotionally, physically, or financially. We’ve been cut off from one another as we practice social distancing, and for such a social community as St. Tammany Parish, the past months have been like a shadow cast over our vibrant spirit. Fortunately, we are working our way back to one another as the community is opening up again; and we look forward to becoming socially active once again. Naturally, safety is paramount, and Cooper is deeply dedicated to leading the community in his care to a new normal that still allows St. Tammany to thrive. “Social events are part of who we are here in St. Tammany,” he says. “How they will change going forward remains to be seen, but we do know that things will be different. The new norm for social events will be like so many other facets of our lives, and we will adapt and adjust as the situation warrants with the health of our citizens and the health of our economy as our top priorities.”
Part of maintaining health during these social events will, of course, be maintaining vigilance about our own roles in stopping the spread of COVID-19. Practicing good hygiene, wearing a mask, and safe physical distancing will all play a big part in keeping the community safe in social situations and get us closer to a time when we are free from worry. “Remember, we’re all going through this together,” says Cooper.