On December 19, 2019, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana held a naturalization ceremony in which 53 candidates were naturalized as United States citizens. The Honorable Dana M. Douglas, U.S. Magistrate Judge for the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana, presided over the ceremony. Candidates originated from 31 different countries, exemplifying the truly diverse character of the American people.
Attorney Brandon Davis served as the keynote speaker. In his speech, Attorney Davis called on candidates to “move on to the hard work of active citizenship” and described America as
“a place where we can be a part of something bigger, a place where we can contribute our talents and fulfill our ambitions and secure new opportunity for ourselves and for others, a place where we can retain pride in our heritage but where we can recognize that we have a common creed, a loyalty to these documents, a loyalty to our democracy, where we can criticize our government but understand that we love it, where we agree to live together even when we don’t agree with each other, where we work through the democratic process and not through violence or sectarianism to resolve disputes, where we live side by side as neighbors, and where our children know themselves to be a part of this nation, no longer strangers, but the bedrock of this nation, the essence of this nation.”
Following Attorney Davis’s moving and heartfelt speech, the candidates announced their names and countries of origin and swore allegiance to the United States, thereby becoming United States citizens. After the ceremony, the New Orleans Chapter of the League of Women Voters provided new citizens with voter registration applications, encouraging them to take advantage of their newly minted right to vote.