Our Biggest Celebration Ever!

WOW! Just Wow! On March 21, LCCR welcomed more than 230 guests to our annual Celebration for Children’s Rights event–our biggest Celebration ever. Collectively, we raised a record-smashing $106,483 to fund our work with arrested and incarcerated youth in Louisiana. AMAZING! Thank you!

All photographs by Monwell Frazier

LCCR is dedicated to keeping children out of the legal system so that they can thrive in their homes and communities. This evening, we celebrated our successes and recommitted to our vision of a Louisiana where every child, no matter their race or class, is free to be a child and supported in becoming a healthy adult.

Our guests heard from Collette, the mother of a child currently incarcerated within the legal system here in New Orleans. Standing alongside LCCR Attorney Remi Abiodun, Collette shared how navigating the legal system as a parent has been incredibly stressful and overwhelming. But she also shared how she is thankful for the guidance and support that Remi and the rest of LCCR’s team has provided her and her son as the latter’s case winds its way through the court system. Like every child in the system, Collette knows that her son is so much more than the offense he’s accused of. She welcomes the day she’ll see him come home–though when that day will be is still too early to tell. Until then, LCCR will continue to work with the family to ensure that their needs are being met. Thank you, Collette, for bravely sharing your personal experience with us.

Our guests also helped us present Ubuntu Village with our 2024 Pascal Calogero Champion of Justice Award. Ubuntu was founded in 2016 by Ernest Johnson, a community organizer who, growing up in New Orleans, came to understand firsthand how the juvenile legal system negatively impacts families. While accepting the award, Mr. Johnson reiterated his core belief that young people in the legal system are not castoffs. Rather, they all have value to add as part of our community. Ubuntu helps connect the families of system-involved youth to resources and provides them with the space they need to reflect and grow. For its years of incredible work helping families advocate for themselves in New Orleans’ juvenile legal system, we were thrilled to have the opportunity this evening to thank Ubuntu Village for all is does for our community.

Finally, our guests helped us present Milbank LLP with our Distinguished Pro Bono Partner Award, which is used to recognize special pro bono partners who have proved their commitment to serving young people in the legal system. Over the past five years, Milbank has worked closely with LCCR on six juvenile life without parole cases, which are our most labor-intensive. The firm’s attorneys have collectively dedicated more than 20,000 hours of service to LCCR’s juvenile life cases. So far, they have succeeded in getting four juvenile lifers a new sentence that includes the possibility of parole, with the other two cases currently pending. Accepting the award on the firm’s behalf, Milbank’s Pro Bono Counsel, Tony Cassino, reiterated Milbank’s commitment to justice through our fruitful partnership.

In addition to our speakers, we wish to recognize our amazing partners on this year’s Celebration raffles. Botanical Nail & Skin Studio provided the event with a wonderful $200 gift certificate to give one lucky person a lovely spa day–congrats to Lee R. on winning this prize! Steve Wilshire and Heaven Hill Brands returned this year to again offer a private whiskey tasting for twelve–a huge hit at last year’s event. Congrats to Diana T. on this prize win! And finally, 2024 James Beard Award semifinalist Chef Melissa Araujo offered the evening’s biggest prize: she pledged to close her popular Bywater restaurant, Alma, for one evening to personally prepare a serve a private three-course meal for four. Congrats to Mary M. on winning this grand prize! And many thanks again to our friend Nicole at Off the Eaten Path NOLA for helping make this amazing prize happen.

As always, we can think of no better way to spend a beautiful (if slightly rainy) spring evening than to come together with so many of our friends and supporters. Thank you for joining us and making this our biggest Celebration to date!

A special thank you goes out to our 2024 Celebration host committee…

Tiye & Qasim Davis // Sean Fisher // Philip D. Lorio IV // Jerry Meunier // Brett Perrier // Toni & Joseph Rome // Will Snowden // Miles Thomas // Peggy Welsh // Olivia Woollam

Our 2024 sponsors and top donors

Guardian of Justice:

Conrad Williams Family Charitable Fund

Defender of Justice:

Molly Pulda & Gary Sernovitz

Advocate of Justice: Baptist Community Ministries // BCBSLA Foundation // Sean Fisher Architect // Fishman Haygood LLP // Fluor Federal Petroleum Operations​ // Lulu & Billy Freiberg // Gainsburgh, Benjamin, David, Meunier & Warshauer, LLC // Gordon Arata Montgomery Barnett // Hancock Whitney // InspireNOLA Charter Schools // Donna & Jack Little // Mary & Dale MacCurdy // Maron Marvel Bradley Anderson & Tardy LLC // Perrier Esquerré Contractors LLC // Poeyfarre Fund // ResourceFull Consulting // Ramona & Will Seemann // Sessions, Israel & Shartle // Laurie & Paul Sterbcow // Sheryl Larson Thompson // Anne & Quentin Urquhart // Lynda & Irving Warshauer // Sarah & George Young

Benefactor of Justice: Baker Donelson // Bell Butler Design Architecture // Bernard & Franks // Courington, Kiefer, Sommers, Marullo & Matherne LLP // Milly & George Denegre // Krystle & Royce Duplessis // Melanie & Ken Ehrlich // Christina & John Fay // Allison & George Freeman // Bill Hammack & Janice Parmelee // Laquisha & Andraes Hubbard // Huber Thomas LLP // Sally & Jay Lapeyre // Liskow & Lewis APLC // Megan & Phil Lorio // Kathy & Jerry Meunier // Matt Morrin & Kim Ellis // OfficeOps // Power Coalition for Equality & Justice // Ava Rogers // Scott Vicknair Injury Lawyers // Ramona & Will Seemann // Jackie & Bruce Shreves // Simon, Peragine, Smith & Redfearn LLP // Allison & Pierre Stouse // Tatje Insurance & Financial Products // Peggy Welsh // Elizabeth & Carlos Zervigón​

Fellow of Justice: 18th Ward Sports Club // AKD Law // Anonymous // Amanda & Ryan Berger // Kirsten & Alex Breckinridge // Suzanne Butler & Mark Klyza // Carlo Ditta Inc. // Carmen & Kelly Duncan // Ninette & Perry Eastman // Mari & George Fisher // Nancy Hirsch Lassen & Jim Gambill // Jack Harrison // Amy & John Hite // Susan & Andy Lee // Diana & Tom Lewis // Aimee McCarron // Steve Scheckman // Total Community Action Inc. //​ Linda Usdin DrPH & Steven Bingler // Miriam & Bruce Waltzer // Lizzie & Neal White // Kathy Wiedorn // Alice & Bill Wright // Ellen & Marc Yellin​

We also wish to thank the following for their partnership and steadfast commitment to our kids:

And those who lent additional assistance to help make this evening so special…

We’ll see you all again at the next Celebration in 2025!

Posted by Ryan Hillon April 4, 2024and categorized as Awards, Client Story, Events, Featured, News, Reports, Uncategorized