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Cavanaugh stepping up to help community

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Robert CavanaughThe 2015 Mount Ida Area Chamber of Commerce Man of the Year, Robert Cavanaugh, is proof that retirement doesn’t mean that a person gets to just sit back and relax.
The former Chancellor at LSU Alexandria and his wife purchased a home near the Ouachita River in 1995 and retired to the community in 2008.
He entered the community with a desire to give back to a community that brought so much joy in his life.
His many volunteer efforts reflect his passions in life. He is a board member for the Friends of the Ouachita Trail (FOOT), which works to maintain and improve the 123 mile Ouachita National Trail. His contributions include grant writing which has made it possible to build log shelters along the trail. He also helped build the shelters.
He is also a Traildog, a group of volunteers who have helped bring the Lake Ouachita Vista Trail (LOViT) to life. The LOViT trail stretches 45 miles from Denby Point in Montgomery County to the Blakely Mountain Dam in Garland County.
His love of trails has led him to sit on the board of the Womble Challenge Mountain Bike Race held each spring. The event brings hundreds of bikers from around the world to Montgomery County each year.
He is also a board member for the Lake Ouachita Citizen’s Focus Committee. This is a federally sponsored committee that provides local citizens with an avenue of input into the operation of Lake Ouachita.
He is also an officer on the board of the Friends of Lake Ouachita, a non-profit corporation that manages grants for improvements in the recreational facilities in and around Lake Ouachita.
He is also a board member at the Montgomery Heatlh Education Advisory Board. The group works with the State Health Department to offer educational programs to help improve the health of local residents.
He is also a board member for Front Porch Inc. which supports the Front Porch Music Program.
The Front Porch Stage provides free music for the community every Saturday from May to September on the courthouse square in Mount Ida.
He also is involved in the Ouachita Art Gallery located in Mount Ida. He has several forged art pieces on display in the gallery and he also provides maintenance at the facility when needed.