During his State of the City Address, Mayor Landrieu introduced a new member of his senior staff. Former Councilmember James Carter will serve as the City's Criminal Justice Commissioner, a position in which he will advise the Mayor on all matters pertaining to the criminal justice system for the City of New Orleans. In this role, he will head the efforts of the Mayor's Criminal Justice Coordinating Council.
"Reducing crime has been my top priority since taking office," said Mayor Landrieu. "We need a holistic approach to achieve this, one that involves putting our criminal justice system under a magnifying glass and working closely with key members of the system. With his broad background in government, law and criminal justice, coupled with his commitment to the city's progress, James Carter is the ideal person for this task. James is well respected with a thorough understanding of the criminal justice system, and I am proud to have him as a member of my team."
"As a lifelong New Orleanian, improving our city's criminal justice system has long been a personal passion of mine," said Carter. "I am honored to become part of Mayor Landrieu's senior team and look forward to making an impact on our city's criminal justice system."
Carter has dedicated his professional career to combating crime. As a member of the City Council from 2006 to 2010, he served as Chair of the Criminal Justice Committee, created the Criminal Justice Leadership Alliance, organized two comprehensive crime summits, spearheaded bringing the Ceasefire Initiative to New Orleans, and led the effort to create the position of an independent police monitor.
Carter is a partner at James Carter & Associates, LLC, and an attorney on the Criminal Justice Act Panel of the United States Eastern District Court of Louisiana, a position in which he provided federal criminal defense representation when conflicts arose within the Federal Public Defenders Office.
He has also served as Program Director for the U.S. Department of Justice's Initiative, Weed and Seed Program in New Orleans, where he directed programs which concentrated on law enforcement, neighborhood restoration, prevention, intervention and treatment. Carter also gained valuable experience as a public defender in Orleans Parish.
In his role as Criminal Justice Commissioner, Carter will develop and monitor the City's criminal justice strategy, which will encompass each aspect of the criminal justice system: police, courts, the District Attorney's office, City Attorney's office, and other key stakeholders. He will work closely with the city's courts and jail systems to ensure a comprehensive approach to improving the criminal justice system.
Carter's office will also administer current U.S. Department of Justice grants and seek new grants that will enhance the city's criminal justice strategy. This includes coordinating grants within the Department of Public Safety and seeking new grants that will enable technology to further improve the criminal justice system.
Carter will start with the City on May 12, 2011.
Photo courtesy of James Carter.
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