When asked to put into words what Sacred Heart means to her, Lynne Charbonnet Gibbons ’89 says her overwhelming feeling is one of gratitude. With her record of service to the school and the meaningful relationships she has built with so many students, parents, teachers, administrators and volunteers, it is an understatement to say that the feeling is mutual. In recognition of her many professional and volunteer contributions to Sacred Heart, the Alumnae Association is extremely pleased to recognize Lynne with the Alumnae of the Year Award.
After graduating from the Rosary, Lynne attended the University of Alabama, where she graduated summa cum laude with a double major in Early Childhood and Elementary Education. She put those degrees to use at several teaching institutions in the area, including St. George’s Episcopal School, Madison-Ridgeland Academy and Beth Israel Pre-School in Jackson, MS. She then returned to New Orleans and served as Director of the St. George’s Lower School for four years. In 2016, she returned to Sacred Heart to serve as a Little Hearts 1 teacher for the first year that the program was offered. The program has been an outstanding success since its inception, and although she formally retired at the end of last school year, Lynne often can be seen on the Mater Campus when needed as a substitute teacher.
In addition to teaching, Lynne found time to support the school in other important ways, leading the Mothers’ Club as President from 2012-2013 and also as Vice-President and President of the Alumnae Board. Outside of Sacred Heart, Lynne has also supported Stuart Hall through its Parents’ Group and events, as well as many major civic and philanthropic organizations around the city, such as the Junior League, Audubon Institute, Children’s Hospital and Preservation Resource Center.
After formally retiring from Sacred Heart last year, Lynne is currently enjoying being a stay at home mom while her kids are still under her roof.
What does Sacred Heart mean to you?
Sacred Heart has been such a major part of my life for so many years that it is truly hard to put into words what it means to me. But when I reflect on Sacred Heart, my overwhelming feeling is one of gratitude. I am so thankful to my parents for sending me to Sacred Heart as a child. I’m grateful for the education that has served me so well throughout my life; for the solid foundation of faith that Sacred Heart instilled in me; and for the precious and lifelong friendships that I made within those gates.
How did Sacred Heart help you get to where you are today?
Academically, Sacred Heart prepared me to thrive in college. But equally important, Sacred Heart gave me the confidence to trust my voice, to step forward and take on new challenges in personal and professional situations. I believe this is one of the best gifts of the Sacred Heart all-girl educational experience.
What is your favorite Sacred Heart memory?
There are so many memories that still make me smile today. As a student. I remember lower school religion class with Sr. Torian, using “the left side of our brains” painting with Sr. Landry, gouter, Rally Nights and ultimately graduating around the fountain. Now as an adult, my favorite memories include my wedding in the chapel and walking my daughter onto campus for her first day as a nursery student. I can’t wait to see her and her classmates continue the tradition and graduate around the fountain next May.