Rotary President Hartfield earns ‘dream job’ recognition

Published 10:46 am Monday, July 28, 2014

Newly installed Rotary Club of Bogalusa President Billy Hartfield was also recently recognized for his work as financial advisor at the local Edward Jones firm.

He won the Ted Jones Entrepreneurial Award for his achievement in building client relationships.

“It’s truly an honor to be recognized for building relationships with those clients we serve,” he said. “And it is also quite inspirational to receive an award named after a firm legend such as Ted Jones, who was so innovative and recognized the need for quality financial advice for long-term individual investors.”

Hartfield, who has been in his “dream job” at Edward Jones for more than four years, said he enjoys working with local residents.

“Washington Parish has a lot of hardworking, honest folks, the type of people that I grew up around and the type of people I enjoy being around,” he said.

He also expressed his appreciation to Branch Office Administrators Patti Gay and Janice Goff for their work at the firm and to his family members for their support.

“My wife Lauren is my rock, and my son Benson is my inspiration,” he said.

A “come here” who was born and raised in Purvis, Miss., Hartfield was invited to join the Bogalusa Rotary Club about four years ago by member Merlin Duke.

The way he views the club, he said, it breaks down into two parts — networking and charity. He said it is good to be able to network with community leaders and other business people, but the charity side is what keeps him dedicated to Rotary.

“Washington Parish and Bogalusa have been extremely kind to me, and I feel like it’s an obligation and a duty for me to give back whenever I can,” he explained.

Bogalusa Rotary’s service projects include the annual distribution of dictionaries to all third-grade students in the city. The club also provides assistance to the Bogalusa Help Center, donates meals for families in need and works with Rotary International initiatives, including the effort to eradicate the world of polio.

Additionally, Rotary Club of Bogalusa scholarships are awarded to qualified local high school seniors, and programs like Teacher of the Year recognize achievements within the community.

Hartfield will be at the organization’s helm this year, as he was nominated for and elected Rotary president by his fellow members. He said it was an honor to be picked for the position.

“I’m just delighted because it means that Bogalusa has accepted me as one of her own,” he said.

He and the other new officers were installed during the club’s June 24 meeting. He said the focus for this year is increasing the club’s visibility.

At one time, the Bogalusa club had more than 70 members.

“We’re a long way from that right now,” Hartfield said. “The only way we’ll get back to that is to get more doers involved. We’ve got to be more visible and have got to get our membership numbers up.”

The club has some new activities in the works for this year and will continue with popular traditions like the annual pancake supper and the Milltown Classic 5K Road Race.

The club recently hosted a successful running of that event, Hartfield said.

“I think it was about the best one we’ve had so far. We owe a big thank you to our sponsors for that,” he said.

Hartfield also extended an invitation to all community leaders and businesspeople, including those who are retired, to attend a Rotary meeting and get involved.

“We just need more honest hardworking folks who want to give back to their community,” he said.

The club meets each week at 12:15 p.m. at the Bogalusa Country Club. He said there is a great lunch, and weekly speakers keep members updated about current events at the local and national levels.

Anyone interested in joining can reach out to a Rotarian, visit the Rotary Club of Bogalusa Facebook page or email the club at