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News & Announcements

Check this page, or the News and Announcements box on the homepage, for the latest official news and announcements released by the court. You can also access archived news and announcements from this page.

January 7, 2020
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.   Ceremony photographs may be accessed by selecting this link.(Part A, Part B)
December 12, 2019
Federal employees stationed in the U.S. District Courthouse-Hale Boggs Federal Building celebrated the season of giving by donating toys to children living in homeless shelters in and around the New Orleans area.  Over 196 toys were collected from federal employees, including board games, dolls, sports gear, and art supplies.  These toys will be presented at the Annual Forgotten Angels Christmas Party hosted by Ozanam Inn on Monday, December 23rd.  This is the 11th year that federal employees stationed in the U.S. District Courthouse-Hale Boggs Federal Building have donated toys to New Orleans homeless youth.  The effort is organized by Judge Jay Zainey and toys and other donations are collected by Steve Munster.  
December 2, 2019
On October 25, 2019, the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana held its 2nd Biennial Bench and Bar Conference at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Downtown New Orleans.  Approximately 500 members of the Eastern District’s bench and bar were in attendance.     Chief U.S. District Judge Nannette Jolivette Brown opened the conference.  U.S. District Judge Eldon Fallon followed the opening with a dedication to retired U.S. District Judge Helen “Ginger” Berrigan.  U.S. District Judge Jay Zainey honored U.S. District Judge Peter Beer, and U.S. Magistrate Judge Karen Wells Roby followed by honoring retired U.S. Magistrate Judge Daniel Knowles and retiring U.S. Magistrate Judge Joseph Wilkinson.  Afterwards, Chief Judge Brown acknowledged the contributions which various bar presidents made in planning the conference.  These bar presidents included Cory Vidal, former president of the Greater New Orleans Louis A. Martinet Legal Society, Jason Waguespack, president of the New Orleans Bar Association, and W. Raley Alford, III, former president of the New Orleans Chapter of the Federal Bar Association. In addition, both U.S. 5th Circuit Judge Carl Stewart and U.S. District Judge Sarah Vance were honored - Judge Stewart for his service as Chief Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit and Judge Vance for her service as Chair of the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation.     After the conference opening, attendees received instruction on a variety of civil and criminal law topics, including A Primer on Attorney Discipline in the Eastern District (Eva Dossier and Darren Patin), A View from the New Kids on the Bench (U.S. District Judges Barry Ashe, Greg Guidry, and Wendy Vitter and U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Meredith Grabill), an Introduction and Conversation with Priscilla Owen, Chief Judge for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit (Chief U.S. District Judge Nannette Jolivette Brown and Chief U.S. 5th Circuit Judge Priscilla Owen), Criminal Advocacy and Sentencing (U.S. District Judge Lance Africk, Federal Public Defender Claude Kelly, U.S.S.C. Deputy Director Alan Dorhoffer, and U.S.A.O. Chief of Trials Bill McSherry), U.S. Supreme Court and Fifth Circuit Updates (W. Raley Alford, III, Jason Waguespack, Southern Law School Vice Chancellor Shawn Vance, Tulane Law School Professor Stephen Griffin, and LSU Law School Professor Maggie Thomas), Settlement Conferences (U.S. Magistrate Judges Janis van Meerveld, Michael North, and Karen Wells Roby), The Small Business Reorganization Act of 2019 (U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Meredith Grabill, Mark Mintz, Leo Congeni, Cherie Nobles, and Timothy Kirkpatrick), Procedural Aspects of Disability & Medicare Appeals (Jason Waguespack, DHH Associate Chief Administrative Law Judge Tamia Gordon, SSA Administrative Law Judge Jeffery Morgan, and Wiebke Breuer), and ABC’s of Multidistrict Litigation (U.S. District Judges Carl Barbier, Eldon Fallon, and Jane Triche Milazzo, U.S. Magistrate Judge Michael North, Kim Moore, and Gerald Meunier).     In addition, attendees were treated to a riveting and thought-provoking lunchtime presentation on Evidence-Based Sentencing given by retired U.S. District Judge and Harvard Law Professor Nancy Gertner.       
November 27, 2019
From September 8 – 12, 2019, the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana hosted a delegation of criminal court judges from the Republic of Georgia.  The purpose of the delegation’s visit was to observe criminal proceedings and engage in discussions to gain insight into the innerworkings of the United States’ criminal justice system.  Visiting judges included Lela Nozadze, Ketevan Jatchvadze, Nino Tarashvili, and Levan Darbaidze.  The delegation was accompanied by United States Embassy staff members, Judicial Resident Legal Advisor Kevin Burke, Staff Attorney Ekaterine Popkhadze, and Interpreter Maia Zaridze.  Highlights of the delegation’s visit included meeting with Chief U.S. District Judge Nannette Jolivette Brown, U.S. District Judge Eldon Fallon, Federal 5th Circuit Appellate Judge Stephen Higginson, Federal Public Defender Claude Kelly, First Assistant United States Attorney Michael Simpson, United States Probation Officer Veronica Ramirez, United States Marshal Scott Illing, Judicial Security Inspector Andrew Conklin, and District Judge Case Manager Supervisor James Crull.  In addition, the delegation observed criminal proceedings presided over by Chief U.S. District Judge Brown as well as U.S. District Judge Greg Guidry, U.S. Magistrate Judge Janis van Meerveld, and Orleans Parish Criminal District Court Judge Franz Zibilich.  
November 25, 2019
On October 17, 2019, 35 individuals were naturalized as new United States citizens at the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana. The Honorable Greg G. Guidry, District Judge for the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana, presided over the ceremony. The naturalization candidates originated from countries around the world, including Vietnam, Ecuador, Russia, Dominican Republic, Mexico, Philippines, Honduras, Ukraine, Colombia, Cambodia, Costa Rica, Yemen, Lebanon, Haiti, and Canada. After the candidates individually announced their names and countries of origin, they took the Oath of Allegiance to the United States. The new citizens then received certificates of naturalization and posed for pictures with Judge Guidry. Following the ceremony, citizens were invited to complete voter registration applications by the New Orleans Chapter of the League of Women Voters. Please select this link to access ceremony photographs.
October 29, 2019
In light of our Clerk of Court’s upcoming retirement the US District Court, Eastern District of Louisiana is searching for a Clerk of Court.  Interested applicants can view the vacancy announcement here.
October 21, 2019
The BIENNIAL FEDERAL BENCH AND BAR CONFERENCE is fast approaching.  The Conference will be held on Friday, October 25, 2019, at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in New Orleans.  The final agenda has been posted on the FBBC website  Please use the conference password previously provided via email to access the website. For questions about the conference, please call 504-589-3345 or send an email to 
September 26, 2019
On September 4, 2019, Chief United States District Judge Nannette Jolivette Brown and United States Senator Bill Cassidy jointly convened a Reentry Task Force, the purpose of which was to discuss a system-wide approach to identifying issues and developing solutions relating to the transition of individuals who have been incarcerated back into the community. Judicial officers from throughout the Eastern District of Louisiana who implement reentry courts, local government representatives, state and federal pretrial and probation officers, business owners and other professionals who provide or want to be involved in providing assistance with effective, predictable and safe transition of these citizens returning to our communities, and other stakeholders in and around Louisiana were invited to join task force subcommittees. These stakeholders were challenged to share information concerning mental illness, drug addiction, learning differences, housing and employment, funding, policies, procedures, and gaps in coverage. With this information sharing, the Chief Judge and Senator hope to create a more proactive, systemic approach to transitioning returning individuals back into the community, one which assists individuals from the time of initial arrest through release, and one that supports and enhances the safety of our community as a whole.
September 23, 2019
First Notice to the Bar
September 3, 2019
Order Establishing Merit Selection Panel for Full-time Magistrate Judge Vacancy