Mary McCastle Interview

Mary McCastle began her involvement with the environmental movement in 1980 when she organized and started the environmental group Coalition for Community Activism (CCA). She became an environmental advocate because she and many other members of her rural African American community suffered from a variety of health problems, problems that they attributed to the Rollins Environmental Services, Inc. hazardous waste facility. Mary spent many hours in Baton Rouge on behalf of her community, lobbying to close Rollins. She was one of the first African American women in Louisiana to challenge industry and demand change. In the 1980s, because of her activism, she was invited to speak at Citizen’s Clearinghouse for Hazardous Wastes (CCHW) national environmental conference. Audio interview with Mary McCastle for Women Pioneers of the Louisiana Environmental Movement by Peggy Frankland, conducted by Jennifer A. Cramer, Director of the T. Harry Williams Center for Oral History. Copyright: Louisiana State University Special Collections.