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Louisiana

Naming Ceremony Honors Chief Justice Pascal F. Calogero, Jr.

(New Orleans, LA) The Louisiana Supreme Court convened on Tuesday, December 10, 2019 for the Naming Ceremony of the Chief Justice Pascal F. Calogero, Jr. Courthouse. Participating in the occasion were Honorable John Bel Edwards, Governor of Louisiana; Honorable Bernette Joshua Johnson, Louisiana Supreme Court Chief Justice, and the Associate Justices. Kim Sport, Former Executive Counsel to Chief Justice Pascal F. Calogero, Jr., opened the program, addressing the assembly of state dignitaries, judges, members of the legal profession, Calogero family members and friends. Program speakers were Chief Justice Bernette Joshua Johnson; Brother Ivy LeBlanc, S. C.; Madeleine Landrieu, Loyola Law Dean and Judge Adrian G. Duplantier Distinguished Professor of Law; John T. Olivier, Clerk of Court, Louisiana Supreme Court; Timothy Averill, Former Judicial Administrator, Louisiana Supreme Court, and Mrs. Pascal F. Calogero, Jr. After the live-streamed convening, E. Phelps Gay, Supreme Court of Louisiana Historical Society, summarized Chief Justice Calogero’s career and unveiled an image of the courthouse facade with lettering displaying the “Chief Justice Pascal F. Calogero, Jr. Courthouse”.Chief Justice Bernette Joshua Johnson welcomed all and acknowledged dignitaries who were present. While reminiscing on years of serving with Chief Justice Calogero she remarked, “This is a historic milestone, not only for the judiciary and the legal community but also for the entire state of Louisiana. I had the pleasure of working with Chief Justice Calogero from 1994-2008 when he retired as the longest-serving justice in the history of the court. I developed a deep respect for my colleague’s intellect, integrity, and dedication to fairness and justice. His contributions to Louisiana law and judicial administration are immeasurable.”In 2004, after 20 years of planning, budgetary pitfalls, intermittent support, and countless trips to the Capital to appeal for legislative appropriations, Chief Justice Calogero’s vision became reality when the Louisiana Supreme Court moved from its courthouse on Loyola Avenue back to the newly renovated building, where it originally sat from 1910-1958. In 2018, legislation was passed to acknowledge the contributions of this esteemed jurist by naming the Louisiana Supreme Court building in his honor. Earlier this year it was signed into law. In his address, Governor John Bel Edwards observed the portrait of Chief Justice Calogero with the Courthouse building plans in hand and commented, “I remember his dedication to serving the least privileged of our citizens with compassion, integrity, and a sense of fairness. His accomplishments included the completion of the restoration of this courthouse and is why I believe this naming ceremony is a fitting tribute to his legacy. I signed the bill into law this year as a result of the 2019 regular session and Act 429. This is a beautiful historic building, the architecture is stunning; it is just a magnificent building.”While on the bench, Chief Justice Calogero authored over 1,000 learned majority opinions, concurrences, and dissents. He participated in over 6,000 oral arguments and published opinions. His opinions and writings are a reflection of his intellect, integrity, incredible work ethic, respect for the rule of law, and passionate dedication to civil liberties, fairness, and justice. Though he is respected for these accomplishments, he will forever be remembered for his passion and drive to restore and return the Court to its previous location, the historic Beaux-Arts style building located at 400 Royal Street. Chief Justice Calogero, who retired in 2008 and passed away in 2018, served as a Justice of the Louisiana Supreme Court for 36 years (1972-2008), the last 18 years as Chief Justice. He is the longest-serving justice in the Court’s 206-year history. Upon the court’s return to the building Chief Justice Calogero remarked, “Returning the state’s highest court to this awe-inspiring building demonstrates to citizens and visitors alike that we, the people of Louisiana, value our system of justice, our rich cultural heritage, and our distinctive architecture. However, let me assure you that the justices and judges who toil within these walls are fully aware that justice is not wrought by shaping marble and stone, but rather, by dedication to the rule of law and the painstaking application of mind, time and work.” For more information contact: Trina S. Vincent, Public Information Specialist, Louisiana Supreme Court at tvincent@lasc.org, (504) 310-2590 or visit lasc.org