PARSIPPANY, NJ (September 20, 2022) — GAF, a Standard Industries company and North America’s largest roofing and waterproofing manufacturer, announced a partnership today with actor Anthony Mackie, the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s new “Captain America,” to help rebuild communities repeatedly hit by natural disasters and left vulnerable to future crises, starting in Mackie’s hometown of New Orleans. This effort is part of GAF’s commitment to invest $25 million through 2025 in GAF Community Matters to help build more resilient communities across the country.
Mackie, the son of a roofer, spent his teen years working in his family roofing business in New Orleans. "Growing up, I spent summers working on roofs with my family, so I know how important this work is to keeping families safe and building stronger communities," said Mackie. "Everyone deserves a roof over their head, and I'm proud to be working with GAF to give back to my hometown and ensure we withstand the next storm."
Extreme weather is impacting almost every corner of the country, with NOAA predicting an above-normal Atlantic hurricane season in 2022. Low-income areas are particularly vulnerable. According to FEMA, over 10,000 families remain displaced and unable to return home following last year’s Hurricane Ida. Nearly 20 years after Hurricane Katrina, an estimated 26% of homes are still vacant in New Orleans’ 7th Ward. Blue tarps have become a visual representation of this devastation. To help finish the job that was started when the blue tarps were first put on following those hurricanes, GAF is committing to repairing or replacing 500 roofs throughout the Gulf Region, starting with 150 roofs in the 7th Ward.
In addition to partnering with GAF’s network of roofing contractors to support this initiative, the company will train members of the community in essential roofing skills through the GAF Roofing Academy and provide resources to non-profit partners, including Rebuilding Together, Habitat for Humanity, Team Rubicon, Good360 and SBP, to employ these individuals to support these rebuilding efforts.
"After a disaster, resources for impacted communities tend to diminish as attention shifts elsewhere," said Jim Schnepper, CEO of GAF. "Our goal is to create lasting resilience by rebuilding in communities where progress has stalled. We are grateful for the opportunity to partner with Anthony to bring awareness to the challenges of long-term disaster recovery, and to continue our work with local non-profit organizations to help members of the New Orleans community return to their homes."
GAF Community Matters is focused on leveraging the company's expertise, resources and products in helping to build greater resilience around families, shelter and workforce, so communities feel more prepared to respond to extreme weather events. Through a network of national and local partnerships, GAF is able to address the unique needs of each community it supports.
"The impact of extreme weather goes well beyond initial property damage and is compounded over time, creating a burden that is almost impossible for families to overcome without help," said William Stoudt, executive director, Rebuilding Together New Orleans. "This is why GAF's commitment and support through Community Matters is so essential. There is a lot of work to be done to repair the homes in this community, but fixing the rest of the house doesn't matter unless you protect the roof first."
GAF Community Matters first launched in 2020 and to date has helped repair roofs on over 3,000 homes. To learn more about GAF Community Matters visit www.GAF.com/CommunityMatters.