On Friday, April 12, 23 local employees of Rain CII joined together to give back to the community that welcomed them after Hurricane Katrina. Katrina forced Rain CII to evacuate its headquarters in New Orleans in 2005. The company set up operations in Kingwood after the storm and eventually decided to relocate their headquarters here permanently. Earlier this year, the civic-minded company provided a $10,000 grant to the Kingwood Service Association (KSA) through the National Recreation and Park Association. This grant was used by the KSA Parks Committee to add 65 trees to those lining Hundred Oak Circle – the drive through Deer Ridge Park. “The new trees complete the planting of 100 oaks for which the circle is named. We began planting them several years ago as money allowed,” said Dick McGucken. “The new trees will provide welcome shade for park users and improve the park’s aesthetics.” But Rain CII didn’t stop with the donation. The company also organized employees and gave them time off to add color to the park’s landscape by planting flowers near the Deer Ridge gazebo and restrooms. Also at Deer Ridge, Rain CII employees removed grass, which was starting to invade the sand in the volleyball court, and vines around trees. After working at Deer Ridge though the morning, the Rain CII employees enjoyed a picnic lunch at River Grove Park and then prepared five areas where KSA plans to install adult physical fitness equipment. They staked the areas, trimmed and removed vegetation, and then leveled the ground in preparation for the equipment installation. “We believe in giving back to the communities in which we live and work,” said Rain CII spokesperson, Elizabeth Clouatre. “Kingwood helped us and now we’re able to help Kingwood.” Rain CII is an industrial carbon company that produces calcined petroleum coke (CPC). CPC is used for the manufacture of aluminum and titanium dioxide and other industrial applications. The company, headquartered in Kingwood, has operations and calcining plants in the United States, India, and China. KSA, a cooperative of 30+ Kingwood community associations, owns and manages five parks in Kingwood: Deer Ridge, River Grove, East End, the Creekwood Nature Area, and the North Park Recreation Area. For more information about Rain CII, visit raincii.com. For more information about KSA, visit KingwoodServiceAssociation.org. Photo: Rain CII employees who volunteered to plant new flowerbeds at Deer Ridge Park are, from left, Anne Blazek, Elizabeth Clouatre, Kevin Hon, Angie Wells, Sam McEwen, David Liville, Mike Tillman, Traci Brown, Maria Reyes, Cheryl Roy, Derek Taylor, Deanna Muffley, Melody Cortez, Steve Rowland, Sherry Culbertson, Pedro McKay, Tisha Reed, Chandra Clark-Thomas, Keith Neyrey, Summer Bartholomew, Amanda Hoppes

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