SHREVEPORT, La. (KSLA) - Retired Lieutenant General Russel Honore attracted people to a rally on this Friday night in Shreveport.
The general is known by many as “The Ragin’ Cajun” and widely recognized as one of America’s most inspirational military and civic leaders.
He became a prominent figure in the wake of recovery efforts following Hurricane Katrina.
The event that brought General Honore to Shreveport took place at Marilynn’s Place restaurant in the 4000 block of Fern Avenue.
The first four speakers are all candidates in the upcoming election. They include:
- Debbie Hollis for Louisiana State Senate District 37
- Patricia Gilley, a candidate for Caddo Parish District Attorney
- Brian Salvatore, running for the Louisiana State House District 5 Seat
- Glenn Cornell, candidate for Caddo Parish Sheriff
Once the political part of the rally ended came their keynote speaker General Honore, who talked about something he knows all about - leadership.
In an interview with KSLA before he spoke, Gen. Honore told us what it takes to effect change.
"The candidates have to be convincing. If they can't convince you they're not going to convince anybody in that legislature."
Honore delivered some hard truths during his remarks to the crowd, which organizers called a "Rally For North Louisiana's Future."
He now speaks to groups on how to create a mindset of problem-solving using strategies that create take charge leaders.
"They gotta be able to speak up, be heard, be focused, and be confident in the issues that they're going to bring to the legislature. If they're not, stay home."
Perhaps perfected during his 37 years of military service, Honore often dispenses with the subtleties of nuanced approaches or typical political calculus.
The general added that creating a new mindset to solve problems begins by reminding elected officials what’s expected of them.
“You’ve got to be able to sacrifice everything for that position you hold to take care of the people who elected you," began Honore.
"Because, if you want to lead you’re gonna have to sacrifice. If you’re gonna lead you’re going to create controversy because people don’t like change.”
Honore said he waived his typical $10-to-20 thousand speaking fee because of how strongly he feels about elections.
"I came here on my own volition after being asked. I wanted to make sure there was no money involved and nothing else because I want to see our state improve."
Finally, General Honore made it clear he does not have any party affiliation and remains completely apolitical.
That means staying away from the endorsement of candidates running for office. That includes the candidates who spoke at this rally in Shreveport.