Travis Bibb Campesi – Dedicated to passing down culture, preserving history

PAM BOESCH Contributing writer
Travis Bibb Campesi

PLAQUEMINE - When you meet Travis Bibb Campesi, her quiet, calm demeanor is immediately evident.

She carries herself with modesty and humility. Sharp, hardworking, conscientious and professional with a unique ability to make you feel at ease, she is a worthy recipient of the Women of Iberville 2013 nomination.

Originally from Lookout Mountain, Tenn., Campesi is the daughter of Kirby and Claude Bibb. She is the youngest of three girls. Campesi's parents had strong morals and values and those traits have definitely passed down to their daughter.

"My mom was involved in literacy programs and she was a lifelong volunteer," Campesi said. "My Dad was a business man with a strong work ethic. I get my love of volunteering and architecture from mom and business and accounting from dad." After graduating from the University of Tennessee in Knoxville, Tenn., she was transported to south Louisiana when she married her husband of 40 years, Ross Campesi, Jr. The two met on a high school trip and their friendship blossomed. Together they have built a strong family unit.

They are the proud parents of three children along with their spouses, Ross III and his wife Stacey, Joseph and his wife Karla, and Ashby and her husband Carlos. Together they also have five beloved grandchildren - all under the age of five.

Campesi's love of community service is endless. In between working at the Campesi family businesses and raising a family, she has served on many committees and community efforts over the years.

She is currently spearheading a major new exhibit at the Iberville Museum called the Atchafalaya Room. The new exhibit and industry annex will help promote and showcase Iberville parish and its unique culture.

"The project is extremely special to me," Campesi said.

Having served on the museum board for 10 years, her roles have varied and currently include grant and design work for the room.

She is also an active board member of Friends of St. Paul, a restoration project. Her love for history and preservation is evident when she speaks of the church.

"I'm part of a group of Bayou Goula natives and residents that are working to preserve, restore and renovate St. Paul's Church," Campesi said.

The church stands on the River Road in Bayou Goula and has an incredible history.

"It was built 142 years ago after the Civil War and restoring it is important," Campesi said. "Since it sits on the site of the first Catholic Church built in Louisiana, Friends of St. Paul would like to restore the church to working condition and to offer the building to the community for uses that befit a church building including historical events, musical venues and formal ceremonies such as weddings and funerals."

Fellow Board member Susan Landry says this about Campesi, "Travis is so resourceful. She tirelessly seeks out grants and new funding opportunities for the church building. She does all this without seeking any recognition. She's so deserving of this honor."