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Greater New Orleans Louis A. Martinet Society | Amistad Research Center

Name: Greater New Orleans Louis A. Martinet Society


Historical Note:

The Louis A. Martinet Legal Society is a professional organization for African American attorneys. It was formed on May 13, 1957 through the efforts of Earl J. Amedee, Israel M. Augustine, Louis Berry, Lionel Collins, Robert F. Collins, Nils R. Douglas, Norman C. Francis, Benjamin J. Johnson, Alvin Jones, Vanue B. LaCour, Ernest N. Morial, Justice Revius Ortique, Jr., J. T. Powell, James Smith, A. P. Tureaud, Freddie Warren, and Lawrence Wheeler. The New Orleans chapter was formed simultaneously with the statewide organization, and other local chapters were formed later.

The organization was named in honor of attorney and activist Louis Andre Martinet who was the first African American graduate of the Straight University Law School, which is now Dillard University. The goal of the organization was to offer professional support to attorneys and to hone their skills and training to combat Jim Crow segregation in the courtroom. The Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka ruling had been recently passed, which made the end of segregation a more tangible outcome for the founders of the organization. A.P Tureaud was elected as the first president of the statewide organization and the New Orleans chapter.

Today, the Martinet Legal Society continues to provide professional support to African American attorneys and aspiring attorneys and to conduct community outreach. Its objectives are to “encourage the interchange of ideas, promote legal scholarships, advance the science of jurisprudence, promote the administration of justice, uphold the order and ethics of the courts, and the profession of law in Louisiana. In 1998, the New Orleans Martinet Legal Foundation was incorporated as the 501(c)(3) arm of the organization, which awards scholarships and sponsors community projects. It was originally called the Louis A. Martinet Legal Society of New Orleans Charity before changing its name in 1999.

The Greater New Orleans Louis A. Martinet Legal Society is an active affiliate of the National Bar Association.

Note Author: Jasmaine Talley





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