Lloyd E. Lenard
|Lloyd Edgar Lenard|
|Caddo Parish Commissioner|
December 10, 1984 – January 11, 1996
|Preceded by||New position|
|Succeeded by||John P. Escude|
|President, Caddo Parish Commission|
|Preceded by||Tommy Gene Armstrong|
|Succeeded by||Donald Aytch, Sr.|
July 29, 1922|
|Died||June 11, 2008
Shreveport, Caddo Parish, Louisiana
|Resting place||Forest Park East Cemetery in Shreveport|
|Spouse(s)||Betty-Jo Sawyer "Skye" Lenard (1947-his death)|
|Service/branch||United States Navy|
|Battles/wars||Mediterranean Theatre of World War II|
(1) Lenard was in 1984 a rare Republican member of the revised Caddo Parish Police Jury, renamed the Caddo Parish Commission.
(3) Lenard's autobiography Papa Left Us But Mama Pulled Us Through recounts how Lenard's womanizing father deserted the family and left Lenard's mother to rear seven children alone during the Great Depression.(4) Lenard's last book was coincidentally prophetically titled The Last Goodbye", based on his wartime experience in France.
Lloyd Edgar Lenard (July 29, 1922 – June 11, 2008) was an American businessman from Shreveport and a former Caddo Parish commissioner, author, United States Navy officer, civic leader, and a pioneer in the establishment of the two-party system in his native Louisiana.
Family, education, military
Lenard was born to James Lenard (1890–1966) and Doshie Lenard (1888–1971) in West Monroe in Ouachita Parish. The second youngest of seven children, he outlived all of his siblings. James Lenard deserted the family during the Great Depression. Lloyd Lenard’s difficult upbringing is highlighted in his 2005 book Papa Left Us But Mama Pulled Us Through.
Lenard graduated from Ouachita Parish High School in Monroe and attended the University of Louisiana at Monroe, then "Northeast Junior College". He completed his bachelor’s degree in journalism on a scholarship at Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge. He obtained his master’s degree in advertising and merchandising at the University of Missouri in Columbia.
In Missouri, he met his future wife, the former Betty-Jo Sawyer (born September 24, 1928) of Framingham, Massachusetts, whom he nicknamed “Sky”. She was attending Stephens College, a women’s liberal arts institution also in Columbia. The couple met at the First Baptist Church of Columbia. They married in Massachusetts on December 23, 1947, at the time of what was determined to have been the worst blizzard in the state in a half-century.
During World War II, Lenard was chosen for the Navy's officer training school at Notre Dame University in South Bend, Indiana. He was a lieutenant with the amphibious forces in the Mediterranean Theatre.
Career and political choices
Lenard’s graduate thesis was on the impact of the Dallas-based Neiman Marcus Company on the southwestern United States. He was offered a position with the Nieman Marcus training program but soon left to return to Monroe, where he became advertising manager of former Governor James A. Noe’s KNOE radio. Lenard became active in the Veterans of Foreign Wars, the Junior Chamber International (or Jaycees), and the fledgling Louisiana Republican Party.
Lenard left KNOE and relocated to Shreveport to join Atena Life Insurance Company as its assistant general agent. He later became general agent for Pan American Life Insurance, having been responsible for the hiring and training of sales associates. He also worked as a recruiter and trainer for Lincoln National Life Insurance. He also was the moderator of the Shreveport KWKH radio program, Party Line.
On November 5, 1974, Lenard lost a race for the 4th congressional district seat on the Louisiana State Board of Education, a position vacated by Robert H. "Bob" Curry. The Democratic nominee, F.A. "Red" Davis, handily prevailed in a heavily Democratic year. This campaign was waged in the early months of the administration of U.S. President Gerald R. Ford, Jr., and Lenard had been a supporter of Richard M. Nixon prior to the presidential resignation of August 9, 1974. Lenard blasted the national media, particularly Dan Rather and Walter Cronkiteof CBS News as "too powerful" and with their sway over the public airwaves could conceivably drive another president from office too. "Put God first, family second, and ourselves last," Lenard told voters.
Lenard’s Republican activities steadily increased, and he served on the 144-member Republican State Central Committee, which meets in Baton Rouge. He was the state party treasurer for seven years.
On December 11, 1984, he began the first of his three four-year terms on the newly formed Caddo Parish Commission, formerly known as the Police Jury. His first term was actually three years. Other Republicans serving on the new 12-member panel were W.D. “Rusty” George and Tommy Gene Armstrong. The commission chairman at the time, Roy M. “Hoppy” Hopkins, was later elected to the Louisiana House of Representatives. Tommy Armstrong served a one-year unexpired term in the Louisiana House as well from 1991–1992.
Lenard became commissioner more than a year after the defeat of Governor David C. Treen, Louisiana’s first Republican governor since Reconstruction, who was handily unseated in the fall of 1983 by Democratic former Governor Edwin Washington Edwards. Though Ronald W. Reagan twice won Louisiana’s electoral votes for president, the Louisiana GOP grew slowly during the 1980s, hurt badly by its failure to win the election for U.S. senator in 1986.
Jerry C. Spears of Keithville, the clerk of the Caddo Parish Commission, recalls Lenard, who held the District 8 seat, as “kind of a watchdog over spending. A budget hawk.” During his tenure, Lenard worked with fellow commissioners to revamp the animal control ordinance and was involved in the efforts to obtain a new juvenile services building and jail.
Lenard was succeeded on the commission by fellow Republican John P. Escude. In the jungle primary held on October 21, 1995, Escude defeated Republican Jeffrey D. Sadow, a political science professor at LSU in Shreveport, 4,697 votes 56.4 percent to 3,628 (43.6 percent).
Lenard’s wrote a sentimental autobiography Papa Left Us But Mama Held Us Together, and a number of novels and short stories. The Last Confederate Flag explores the controversy over the display of the Confederate flag in the American South, by way of a fictitious Stonewall Bedford of Georgia.
Other Lenard books are Miracle on the Thirteenth Hole (2003), a Christian novel about a golf-playing Baptist minister. A collection of short stories is called The Moon’s Cold Light. His final work is "The Last Goodbye", based on his wartime experience in Marseille, France.
Lenard died in Shreveport. In addition to his wife, he was survived by a daughter, Carla Dawn Lenard Frye (born 1951) and husband, Hollis A. Frye (born 1948) of Longview, the seat of Gregg County in East Texas; two sons, Brian Drury Lenard (born November 11, 1954) of Hammond, and Lloyd "Chip" Lenard of Shreveport; a grandson, Ian Frye of Denver, and a granddaughter, Holly Frye of Dallas.
Services were held on June 13, 2008, at the Rose-Neath Marshall Street Chapel in Shreveport, with Dr. Larry Williams officiating and Dr. Scott Tatum assisting. Interment was at Section 5, Lot 221 in Forest Park East Cemetery on St. Vincent Avenue in Shreveport.
- Lloyd E. Lenard, author – Papa Left Us but Mama Pulled Us Through
- Lloyd E. Lenard obituary, The Shreveport Times, date=June 12, 2008.
- "Conservative Speaker Set Tomorrow for Lions Club", Minden Press-Herald, August 3, 1966, p. 1.
- Shreveport Times, November 6, 1974
- "Lenard Lashes 'Ethics and TV'", Minden Press-Herald, November 18, 1974, p. 1.
- Lloyd E. Lenard, author – biographical sketch
- Veta Samuels, The History of the Caddo Parish Commission, Shreveport, Louisiana.
- Former commissioner dies | ShreveportTimes | The Times
- Louisiana Secretary of State-Parish Elections Inquiry
- Lloyd E. Lenard, author – Last Confederate Flag
- Lloyd E. Lenard, author – Miracle on the 13th Hole