Walter Lee to be recognized

By: MICHAEL BORDELON

News Editor

The Louisiana Political Museum and Hall of Fame announced their inductees for 2009 recently. One of the new inductees is our very own Walter Lee, clerk of court.

Lee has served Evangeline Parish as clerk of court for the past 52 years and continues to do so. The late Preston Aucoin once referred to him as the best and most well-known politician from this parish.

The clerk of courts office is one of the busiest in the courthouse, and under the guiding hand of Lee over the years, it is funded solely by the money it receives for services rendered.

Lee was born into a farming family in 1921. Like many at the time, he worked the fields and picked cotton until high school. He then joined the navy, where he stayed until he was discharged in 1947. He worked several different jobs after returning home before deciding to run for the clerk of courts position. Lee said he wanted to run because in his heart he has always been a public servant. It’s what he wanted to do.

With this induction, Lee will join many well-known politicians from around the state, including Mary Landrieu, Donald Hines, Kathleen Blanco, Mike Foster, Bob Odom, Sean O’Keefe, Harry Connick Sr. and many more, who have already been inducted since 2003. Other politicians to be inducted alongside Lee are Al Ater, Foster Campbell, Chris John, Jessel Ourso and Pat Taylor.

The banquet for the induction will be held February 7, at the Winnfield Civic Center at 6 p.m. The banquet will be preceded by a reception at the museum (499 East Main Street in Winnfield) from 3-5 p.m.

Former hall of fame inductee and political cartoonist “Pap” Dean has sketched caricatures of the 2009 inductees for the occasion, as he has done with all other inductees. To view the other inductees and to see Dean’s past works, visit www.lapoliticalmuseum.com.

Lee was honored by the selection and said he is looking forward to being inducted. Lee, who has spent most of his life in the office of clerk of court, has received many compliments over the years in the way he runs his office. Facing little competition during his 52 years in office, he believes it’s a sign of the public acknowledging he has done a great job.

“I must be doing what the people of this parish expect, or I wouldn’t have been returned to this office for so many years,” Lee said. He also added it was his pleasure to serve the community, and he considered himself to be a public servant rather than a politician.

We anxiously await the day of his induction and encourage everyone who sees Lee to congratulate him on his recognition. From the young man from Belaire Cove who took office in June 1956, to today, all of Evangeline Parish is proud of you and appreciates you.

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