NEW ORLEANS, LA-- Today, Criminal Justice Commissioner James Carter announced that his last day with the City in his capacity as Commissioner will be Friday, September 21, 2012. Carter, who began serving as Commissioner in May 2011, will still advise the Landrieu Administration on a pro-bono basis.
“When I took this job last spring, I committed to the Mayor that I would give everything I had to help him tackle the epidemic of young, black males killing each other in New Orleans,” said Commissioner Carter. “We have laid a foundation and have a good, comprehensive plan and team in place to implement NOLA FOR LIFE. Unfortunately, upcoming commitments with my law practice mean that I have to devote more time there. I will, therefore, transition out of my role as full-time Criminal Justice Commissioner.”
Carter added, “My life’s work has been in criminal justice. I can tell you one thing-- there is no one more committed to reducing murder than Mayor Landrieu and this team. I am proud to be able to continue to serve with them as we end this epidemic.”
Mayor Landrieu praised his work on criminal justice matters and on murder reduction efforts in particular.
“James will always be a part of the team. Under his leadership, we’ve stood up the Mayor’s Strategic Command, CeaseFire New Orleans, and SOS: NOLA Midnight Basketball. We’ve made major strides in improving programming, overall conditions, and oversight at the Youth Study Center, and we’ve launched a comprehensive plan to reduce murder called NOLA FOR LIFE. While his leadership will be sorely missed, I know that the team we have in place and that James helped cultivate will continue our progress.”
In his capacity as Criminal Justice Commissioner, Carter helped develop the NOLA FOR LIFE plan to reduce murders, in partnership with NOPD Superintendent Ronal Serpas and Health Commissioner Dr. Karen DeSalvo. Carter revamped the Office of Criminal Justice Coordination and Criminal Justice Coordination Council, both of which manage federal grants and collaborate with public and private agencies involved in criminal justice and victim assistance activities. Commissioner Carter has also overseen vast improvements in programming and management at the Youth Study Center, launched a pre-trial services program in conjunction with the Vera Institute and launched a number of NOLA FOR LIFE murder-reduction initiatives, including CeaseFire New Orleans in Central City, the Mayor’s Strategic Command to Reduce Murders, and the Saving Our Sons campaign. Commissioner Carter is also part of Mayor Landrieu's core team that has helped to foster better relationships with the Mardi Gras Indians and the NOPD.
Carter has dedicated his professional career to combating crime. As a member of 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. As an attorney, Mr. Carter has served both as a former public defender and as an attorney on the Criminal Justice Act Panel of the United States Eastern District Court of Louisiana. He has also served as Program Director for the U.S. Department of Justice’s Initiative, Weed and Seed Program in New Orleans.
As Carter transitions out of his current role, Deputy Mayor and Chief of Staff Judy Reese Morse will oversee department heads and program directors that Carter currently manages.