McManus, who organized an Imagination Library program in Eunice, is the first St. Landry Parish resident recognized in the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana Foundation program, now in its 15th year.
The Angel Award honors people who positively impacts the lives of Louisiana’s children.
The award included a $20,000 grant for each honoree’s chosen charity.
McManus was nominated for the award by Myra Miller of The Eunice News.
Eunice became the first community in Louisiana to take part in the literacy program in 2008, providing a free book a month to all registered children under the age of five. St. Landry-Évangeline United Way is a sponsor of the program.
To date over 1,000 children have registered with the program. Many Eunice’s businesses, clubs and civic organizations has given monetary donations.
First Lady Supriya Jindal served as hostess and mistress of ceremonies for the Angel Award event held at the Lod Cook Alumni Center on the LSU Campus.
Jindal said, “These Angels tonight are now a part of our Wings group. They become a part, along with past honorees, as a Wings group and will be honored during one event in a future date.”
“Making a difference in our communities requires time and money, and that’s why the Blue Cross Foundation is pleased to recognize each of these volunteers with $20,000 grants through the Angel Award,” Blue Cross Blue Shield Executive Director Christy Reeves said. “Through the Angel Award program, we’re partnering with outstanding volunteers to support Louisiana communities and create a healthier state.”
To date, more than 100 Angel Award honorees, from age 17 to 93, have come from all walks of life and are selected based on their effort to enhance a child’s life, whether physically, mentally, emotionally or spiritually.
What they have in common is an unselfish focus on improving the welfare of children in their communities. Over $1 million dollars has been awarded.
McManus and her nominator Miller along with the other eight honorees were recognized and honored at a brunch and a dinner ceremony.
McManus’ four daughters - Wyonna Young of Baton Rouge, Brenda Francois, Mary Johnson and Tracy Aguillard, all of Eunice, were among her guests, along with Senator Elbert Guillory and Representative Mickey Guillory.
Other Angel Award honorees included Betsey Baldwin of Gonzales, Vicki Ellis of Baton Rouge, Jill Ribgy Garner of Baton Rouge, Lynn Hobbs-Green of New Orleans, Janet Leslie of Maurepas, Minh Nguyen of New Orleans and Phillip Thomas of Monroe.