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Saturday, September 22, 2018
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Panelist Bio


Dr. James Caillier
Patrick F. Taylor Foundation

Dr. Caillier was born in Lafayette, Louisiana, he attended the University of Louisiana at Lafayette and earned a Bachelor of Science degree with a minor in Mathematics in 1964. Four years later he earned a Master of Science degree in Chemistry from Southern University in Baton Rouge. In 1978, he acquired the Doctor of Education degree from Louisiana State University. He is married to Jerri Raphael Caillier. They have three children: James Gerard, Ph.D., Jennifer Caillier-Boston, J.D., CPA and Sylvia Caillier-Molaison, Ph.D.

Dr. Caillier began his professional career in 1964 working for the Lafayette Parish School System. In 1970, he was appointed Assistant Professor and Director of the Division of Special Services. He was appointed Director of the Junior Division, and later to Dean of the College of General Studies at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. After becoming a full professor, he was appointed Vice President of Administrative Affairs. In 1988, he was selected as President of Delgado Community College in New Orleans. He is credited with reforming that college. The college was in disarray and was fighting for survival. In four (4) years, he corrected the problems and expanded the college with new programs and it increased the enrollment from 5,000 to almost 16,000 students and was recognized locally, regionally and nationally for his work at the college. Dr. Caillier remained there until his appointment as President of the State Colleges and Universities of Louisiana System in January 1992. He served as the President of the University of Louisiana System from January, 1992 until his retirement in 1999. The State Colleges and Universities of Louisiana System, the 14th largest system of public higher education in the nation, consisted of eight universities and five community colleges with a combined enrollment of 102,000 students and a combined annual budget of $900 million.

In 1992, Act 9 of the Louisiana Legislature created Nunez Community College in St. Bernard Parish under the governance of the Board of Trustees. Dr. Caillier served as Interim President of Nunez for (1) year (1993), in addition to his position as System President. Dr. Caillier wrote a Master Plan for a comprehensive community college system for Louisiana in 1990. He is recognized nationally for his work with community colleges. In 1997, Dr. Caillier lead a movement that successfully convinced the Louisiana Legislature, and then Governor Edwin Edwards, to rename the State Colleges and Universities Systems to ‘The University of Louisiana System’, and allowing universities in that ‘System’ to be named as follows: ‘University of Louisiana at (city of location)’; University of Southwestern Louisiana and Northeast Louisiana became, the ‘University of Louisiana at Lafayette’, and the ‘University of Louisiana at Monroe’, respectively.

Dr. Caillier has received numerous honors and awards, a few of which are highlighted below. He was awarded the Alexander P. Tureaud Black Citizens Medal, the highest honor bestowed on an individual in Louisiana by the NAACP. He has been named one of the Outstanding Young Business Men of America, received the American Legion Honor Award, and the 1991 National Council for Marketing and Public Relations (NCMPR) Pacesetter Award for Exemplary Presidential/CEO Leadership for colleges and universities. He received the National Science Award to complete a Master’s Degree in Chemistry. In 2001, he was named “An Unsung Hero” by the Clout Ministerial Alliance of Louisiana. He was recognized regionally and nationally for his work in Higher Education.

Dr. Caillier has demonstrated his involvement with the community through his many professional and civic affiliations. He has served as a Board Member for numerous organizations, including, Mayor’s Economic Development Commission, Greater Lafayette Chamber of Commerce, Select Council on Revenues and Expenditures in Louisiana’s Future (SECURE), Governor’s Commission on Education, United Way, and the Southern Consumer Education Foundation. He has served as a Board Member on the Taylor Energy Company Board of Directors, Patrick F. Taylor Foundation, and an advisory member of Premier Bank, Bank One of Louisiana, PAR (Public Affairs Research Council) Board of Directors; as well as, a New Orleans Charter Science & Math Academy School Board Member. He was President of the Lafayette Economic Authority, United Way of Lafayette, as well as the Board of Directors for Blueprint Louisiana and other organizations and Boards, including Board Member of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana and World Trade Center (New Orleans).

Dr. Caillier was a member of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools for six years and served on the Executive Committee, the American Association of Community Colleges, the Urban Commission on Education, and the American Association of State Colleges and Universities. He is a Field Reader for the U.S. Department of Education. He is a member of Alpha Phi Fraternity, the Knights of St. Peter Claver, Iberia Bank Advisory Board, Immaculate Heart of Mary Church Trustee, a member of Sigma Pi Phi Fraternity, as well as, a Louisiana State licensed Funeral Director.

He is President Emeritus of the University of Louisiana System, and Executive Director of the Patrick F. Taylor Foundation. The Foundation is primarily responsible for the creation and advocacy of the ‘Taylor Opportunity Program for Students’ (‘TOPS’) in Louisiana and 22 other states. Dr. Caillier had the lead role in the creation of ‘TOPS’ programs in Wyoming and Alaska.

He is a member of the Board of Trustees for Loyola University. He is also President of J-Cal, Inc. and Vice President of the Louisiana Legislative Black Caucus Foundation.

Current Topic


     09/18 - Revisiting Reform

Are the criminal justice reforms working as intended?
In 2017, Louisiana’s legislature passed the Justice Reinvestment Act, which sought to reduce the state’s highest-in-the-nation incarceration rate. The bill was championed by Democratic Governor John Bel Edwards and received bipartisan support including from community and business leaders. Now, just over a year later, the legislation has become a political football. State Attorney General Jeff Landry and Senator John Kennedy, both Republicans considering a run against Edwards in 2019, suggest that the reform package is a failure. They cite murders committed by two inmates released since the Act’s implementation.

Are the criminal justice reforms working as intended? Has the legislation put more residents in harm’s way or are plea deals part of the problem?

Louisiana Public Square looks for answers to these questions and more on “Revisiting Reform” Wednesday, September 26 at 7pm on LPB and in New Orleans on WLAE.

Our panelists are:
• E. Pete Adams, Executive Director, La. District Attorneys Association
• Alanah Hebert, ACLU of Louisiana & Justice Reinvestment Task Force
• Andrew Hundley, Louisiana Parole Project
• Sec. Jimmy LeBlanc, La. Department of Corrections

The program features interviews with Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry; Rep. Terry Landry, D- New Iberia, with the Justice Reinvestment Oversight Council; Deputy Assistant Secretary Natalie Laborde, with the Louisiana Department of Corrections; and Stephanie Riegel, editor of the Baton Rouge Business Report.

LPB CEO, Beth Courtney and professor Robert Mann with the LSU Manship School of Mass Communication host the show.

Louisiana Public Square can also be heard on public radio stations WRKF in Baton Rouge; Red River Radio in Shreveport and Monroe; and WWNO in New Orleans. Check their station websites for schedule.

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Special Presentation


     05/16 - Louisiana Veterans Coming Home

What challenges do our returning veterans face?

Coming Soon!


     10/18 - Louisiana Veterans Back Home

What are the programs and initiatives helping our veterans successfully transition to civilian life?

Recent Topics


     08/18 - The Power of Reading

How can we make inroads to improve adult literacy in Louisiana and champion a joy of reading from pre-school into adulthood?

     07/18 - Preventing Suicide

How is Louisiana addressing its suicide problem?

     06/18 - Louisiana: Sportsman’s Paradise or Problem?  (ENCORE)

Is Louisiana a Sportsman’s Paradise or Problem?

     05/18 - News About the News

How can viewers distinguish between fact and fake news and is social media blurring the difference?
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