Jeffrey P. Victory

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Jeffrey Paul Victory
Associate Justice of the Louisiana Supreme Court
Incumbent
Assumed office
January 1, 1995
Judge of the Louisiana 2nd Circuit Court of Appeal, 3rd District, Division C
In office
January 1, 1991 – December 31, 1994
Judge of the Louisiana 1st Judicial District Court
In office
January 1, 1981 – December 31, 1990
Personal details
Born (1946-01-29) January 29, 1946 (age 68)
Shreveport, Caddo Parish
Louisiana, USA
Political party Democrat-turned-Republican
Spouse(s) Dr. Nancy Clark Victory
Children William Peter Victory

Christopher Thomas Victory
Paul Bradford Victory
Mary Kathryn Victory

Residence Shreveport, Louisiana
Alma mater C. E. Byrd High School

Centenary College of Louisiana
Tulane University Law School

Occupation Judge; Attorney
Religion Southern Baptist
Military service
Service/branch Louisiana National Guard Special Airborne Forces

Jeffrey Paul Victory (born January 29, 1946) is one of the seven members of the Louisiana Supreme Court, having held since 1995 the District 2 seat based in eleven parishes about his native Shreveport, Louisiana. Victory is a Democrat-turned-Republican.

Victory's current Supreme Court term expires on January 1, 2015,[1] and he is not a candidate for reelection in 2014. Republican Judge Scott Crichton of the Louisiana 1st Judicial District Court in Caddo Parish is an announced candidate to succeed Victory.[2]


Early years[edit]

A son of Thomas Edward Victory and the former Esther Horton, Victory graduated in 1963 as a member of the National Honor Society at C. E. Byrd High School in Shreveport. He entered Methodist-affiliated Centenary College in Shreveport on an athletic scholarship and in 1967 obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree in the fields of history and government.[1] While at Centenary, Victory worked at the former Louisiana Army Ammunition Plant west of Minden and as a roughneck in the oilfields.[3]

In 1967, he entered the Tulane University School of Law in New Orleans, where he was a staff member of the Tulane Law Review. While at Tulane, he enlisted in the Louisiana National Guard Special Airborne Forces. After graduation from Tulane in 1971, he practiced law with the Shreveport firm of Tucker Jeter and Jackson.[1]

Judicial tenure[edit]

In 1981, Justice Victory, then a Democrat, was elected to the Louisiana 1st Judicial District Court in Caddo Parish. In 1990, he was elected to the Louisiana Second Circuit Court of Appeal, encompassing Caddo, Red River, and DeSoto parishes. In the election held on October 6, 1990, he defeated fellow Democrat James E. Clark of Shreveport, 43,516 (55 percent) to 35,599 (45 percent).[4]

After four years on the circuit court, Judge Victory ran for a ten-year term on the Supreme Court in the nonpartisan blanket primary held on October 1, 1994 against fellow Democrats Henry Newton Brown, Jr., of Bossier City and Charles R. Scott. Brown, Victory's colleague on the circuit court, led in the primary with 43,811 votes (37.5 percent). Victory trailed with 36,522 votes (31.27 percent), only 42 votes ahead of the third-place candidate, Charles Scott, who received 36,480 votes (31.23 percent).[5]

In the second round of balloting on November 8, 1994, Victory prevailed over Brown, who had earlier been district attorney for Bossier and Webster parishes, 69,864 (53 percent) to 62,048 (47 percent). Supreme Court terms in Louisiana extend for ten years.[6] A native of Bienville Parish, Henry Brown is now the Chief Judge of the Louisiana 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals. He ran unopposed for the position in 2010 and his current term extends until December 31, 2020.

On January 8, 2009, Justice Victory swore into office the new Caddo Parish district attorney, the same Charles R. Scott, the Democrat whom Victory had defeated for the high court fourteen years earlier.[7]

In 2004, in his second election to the Supreme Court, Victory ran for the first time as a Republican and defeated in the primary the Democrat Stephen Beasley, 74,320 (60.9 percent) to 47,799 (39.1 percent). Beasley lost though he carried six of the eleven parishes.[8]

In May 2014, Victory was the only member of the high court who wanted to hear the appeal of four professors at Louisiana College who were dismissed in 2005 in a dispute over biblical inerrancy. The other justices said that they would not become entangled in the nuances of Baptist theology and the establishment clause of the First Amendment to the United States Constitution. Outgoing President Joe W. Aguillard called the justices' decision not to hear the appeal "priceless".[9]

Victory fails to win chief justice position[edit]

Victory sought to succeed Catherine D. Kimball of Ventress in Pointe Coupee Parish as chief justice of the Louisiana Supreme Court. She retired from the court on February 1, 2013 because of health issues. Victory and a colleague, Bernette Joshua Johnson, an African American from New Orleans, claimed the right to succeed Kimball under the Louisiana Constitution of 1974, which directs that the longest-serving associate justice becomes the chief justice if a vacancy occurs prior to the next regular election. Johnson's service dates to 1994 when she was elected to a 4th Circuit Court judgeship but was instead appointed to the Supreme Court under a federal consent decree that temporarily augmented the number of justices from seven to eight. Victory maintained that he is the legitimate successor because he was elected to the Supreme Court in 1994 while he had previously been a circuit court judge for nearly four years.[10]

United States District Judge Susie Morgan ruled in September 2012 that Johnson had the greater seniority but did not specifically require the state Supreme Court to designate her as chief justice. In October 2012, the state court declared that Johnson would succeed Kimball because the start of Johnson's tenure predates that of Victory even though she had not been elected specifically to the Supreme Court when she first began to serve in the chamber.[11]

Personal life[edit]

Victory is a member of the committee which has been attempting for several years to establish a Christian law school in downtown Shreveport through the auspices of Baptist-affiliated Louisiana College in Pineville.[12]

Justice Victory and his wife, Dr. Nancy Clark Victory, have four children, William Peter Victory, Christopher Thomas Victory, Paul Bradford Victory, and Mary Kathryn Victory. The Victory family attends Broadmoor Baptist Church in Shreveport, where the judge has been the director of the class of high school seniors.[3] Victory often addresses Baptist groups in Louisiana as well as neighboring states.[13]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c "Louisiana Supreme Court: Associate Justice Jeffrey P. Victory". lasc.org. Retrieved June 24, 2012. 
  2. ^ "Louisiana Supreme Court Justice Jeffrey Victory will not seek re-election, August 2, 2013". New Orleans Times-Picayune. Retrieved August 21, 2013. 
  3. ^ a b "North Shreveport Lions Club, July 22, 2004". northshreveportlions.org. Retrieved June 26, 2012. 
  4. ^ "Louisiana primary election returns, October 6, 1990". staticresults.sos.la.gov. Retrieved June 25, 2012. 
  5. ^ "Primary election returns, October 1, 1994". staticresults.sos.la.gov. Retrieved June 26, 2012. 
  6. ^ "General election returns, November 8, 1994". staticresults.sos.la.gov. Retrieved June 26, 2012. 
  7. ^ "The New Caddo District Attorney Charles Scott Is Sworn-in on 1-08-09". scottforda.com. Retrieved June 26, 2012. 
  8. ^ "Primary election returns, September 18, 2004". static results.sos.la.gov. Retrieved June 26, 2012. 
  9. ^ "Former Louisiana College professors rebuffed as top court refuses to hear case". Alexandria Town Talk. Retrieved May 9, 2014. 
  10. ^ "Race tinges debate over next La. chief justice". Alexandria Daily Town Talk, June 24, 2012. Retrieved June 26, 2012. 
  11. ^ "Bernette Johnson sworn in as Louisiana Supreme Court's first black chief justice". New Orleans Times-Picayune, February 1, 2013. Retrieved August 21, 2013. 
  12. ^ "Judge Paul Pressler School of Law", Columns: The Magazine for Louisiana College Alumni and Friends, Winter 2010, p. 17
  13. ^ ""Bailey Asks Graduating Seniors to Navigate the Dialetics," December 19, 2003". okbu.edu. Retrieved June 26, 2012.