Racheal Hebert, LCSW, Expands Reach of Nonprofit Organization, STAR, Across Louisiana
Baton Rouge, La -- Racheal Hebert, LCSW, comes from Houma, Louisiana. She received her undergraduate degree at LSU in Women’s & Gender Studies and sociology in 2007. Herbert received her Master’s in Social Work from LSU in 2013. She is now the president and CEO of the nonprofit organization, STAR or Sexual Trauma Awareness & Response.
My LSU Experience
Hebert says that her time at LSU has prepared her to thrive in the larger Baton Rouge community. She earned a promotion to the position of President and CEO of STAR.
“The knowledge and skills I learned as a graduate student prepared me to take initiative and engage in innovative strategies to improve my community, specifically by expanding and growing sexual assault services for individuals and families throughout Louisiana. My passion for social justice led me to the field of social work, and my degree from LSU allows me to collaborate with organizations and individuals that are committed to building a better world,” said Hebert.
She describes her biggest impact in her career as raising awareness of the prevalence of sexual trauma in the Baton Rouge community and implementing programming targeted at the intervention and prevention of sexual violence. Hebert has worked as a sexual assault advocate for the past 10 years, serving as a nonprofit CEO for the past 6 years.
“Through my experiences serving individuals and families, and collaborating with partner organizations and institutions, I have learned the value of listening to, advocating for and uplifting the voices of those who have experienced sexual violence,” said Hebert.
The Impact of LSU Faculty
Out of the many incredible faculty members in the school of social work, the one that stood out to Hebert was Dr. Catherine Lemieux. Dr. Lemieux guided her throughout her years as an MSW student and writing her thesis. Dr. Lemieux mentored Hebert through research, writing, data collection, and analysis, which are all critical tools for a social worker. After graduation, Dr. Lemieux served as her LCSW supervisor. The two meet weekly to discuss challenges as a social worker and nonprofit director. Dr. Lemieux gave her constant feedback and guidance during those crucial early stages of Hebert’s professional development.
“Dr. Lemieux is an invaluable mentor to me, and I appreciate all of her time and investment in my growth,” said Hebert.
An Ideal Career
Hebert says she has always been an ambitious and driven individual. While in school for her Master’s, she started working full time at the Baton Rouge Rape Crisis Center, which later became STAR, as the volunteer coordinator. As a graduate student, she was not sure what direction her career would take. She was interested in addressing public health problems. But after graduation, she was promoted to the CEO of STAR.
This was an organization where she had the opportunity to build it from the ground up. STAR transitioned into a nonprofit in 2012 and began with two staff members. Now, STAR has 32 staff members and has locations in Alexandria, Baton Rouge, and New Orleans.
“My career grew into something I never would have imagined as a student,” said Hebert.
Hebert’s future goals are to continue building on the success of STAR. She sees the organization moving into state and national spotlight for their development for the past six years.
The LSU School of Social Work (SSW) aspires to be a leading school of social work, a vibrant center of intellectual development, a leader in promoting and supporting diverse communities, and an advocate for an integrated and inclusive model of social work, all within a learning environment that supports best educational practices. The SSW offers Child and Family Studies (CFS) and Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) undergraduate degrees, MSW, online MSW, and PhD. SSW is part of the College of Human Sciences & Education.
Visit the School of Social Work.
The College of Human Sciences & Education (CHSE) is a nationally accredited division of Louisiana State University. The college is comprised of the School of Education, the School of Kinesiology, the School of Leadership & Human Resource Development, the School of Library & Information Science, the School of Social Work, and the University Laboratory School. These combined schools offer 8 undergraduate degree programs, 18 graduate programs, and 7 online graduate degree and/or certificate programs, enrolling more than 1,900 undergraduate and 1,120 graduate students. The College is committed to achieving the highest standards in teaching, research, and service and is committed to improving quality of life across the lifespan.
Visit the College of Human Sciences & Education.