Jul 7, 201410:54 AM
New Orleans Voices

Our City Talks Back

Crimestoppers: Crime prevention through community involvement

An interview with Darlene Cusanza, CEO of the crime prevention organization.

Darlene Cusanza is the president and CEO of Crimestoppers New Orleans. In this interview, Darlene explains that Crimestoppers is an international organization that focuses on encouraging people to provide information about crimes by offering them rewards for useful tips, while strictly preserving the tip givers' anonymity. Darlene points out that Crimestoppers New Orleans serves more than nine parishes. Since the organization began, tips from the public in our area have led to over 14,000 felony convictions, and more than $2 million in rewards to tip givers. During that time, no one has experienced retaliation for providing a useful tip about a felony crime. Darlene points out that the organization representatives never ask for a caller's name or contact information; rather, callers are identified only by a code number. In this podcast, Darlene explains how the organization pays anonymous informants their cash rewards. In addition to the felony tip program, the organization also has a youth education program. As Darlene notes, "Volunteers are always needed" for everything from assisting with teen programs to manning booths on the annual Night Out Against Crime. 

Listen to the podcast here

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New Orleans Voices

Our City Talks Back

about

Craig Kraemer grew up in New Orleans on Lowerline Street, across from the Carrollton Cemetery. As a child, he watched countless Jazz Funerals wind their way into the cemetery long before Jazz Funerals became cool. He remembers Hurricane Betsy and Mayor Vic Schiro’s famous quote to panicked citizens: “...don’t believe any false rumors unless they come from me...”

 

Kraemer lives now in Faubourg Saint John near picturesque Bayou St. John. (He prefers the term "faubourg" to"neighborhood" to reflect his pride in New Orleans’ French heritage.) Although his father’s family was originally from Germany, Kraemer’s ancestors—who established the town of Kraemer, Louisiana— adopted Cajun culture and traditions. His mother's family came straight from Paris to settle in New Orleans.

 

Kraemer's day job is as a videographer and graphic designer for his company, Kraemer Advertising. Kraemer's ongoing projects include filming productions for the New Orleans Opera, and symposiums and events for the Historic New Orleans Collection. In addition, he provides a variety of web videos and other film and graphic services for corporate and business clients. Kraemer's love for history and tradition have led him to recently open a new business: CK Digital Memories. This unique service allows Kraemer to apply his skills as an award-winning documentarian, film editor and visual designer to film and produce very personal and comprehensive Family History Video Documentaries for discerning clients. These broadcast quality productions capture the life stories of traditionalists who value their family legacies and heritages.

 

Kraemer’s clients understand the importance of preserving family history and achievements. They put high value on their history and want lasting video tributes to share their family pride with generations to come. In his work, Kraemer films clients as they recount family stories and share personal reminiscences. He then edits the video to include photographs and home movies the family provides. To add richness and ambiance, Kraemer adds music selections that relate to the stories and their eras, and includes photo images of cherished heirlooms or objects that have special family meaning. The result is a unique family chronicle, an enduring testament to a family’s continuing heritage. 

 

Kraemer started his New Orleans Podcasting site as a community service four months following Hurricane Katrina. New Orleans was in dire need of positive stories after the massive devastation of the storm. The national media were taking care of the negative stories. However, those who had stayed through Katrina, who were still in the city or who had just returned were eager to talk about the good things that were happening, however small they were. Kraemer’s weekly podcast interviews provided much needed injections of hope as they regularly highlighted positive stories throughout the city. Today, Kraemer continues to gather positive and unique stories to inform locals and the world about the wonderful place we call home.

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