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Donald G. Kelly

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Donald Gene "Don" Kelly
Louisiana State Senator for District 31 (now Grant, Natchitoches, Rapides, Red River, Sabine, and Winn parishes)
In office
Preceded byPaul Lee Foshee, Sr.
Succeeded byKenneth Michael "Mike" Smith
Personal details
Born (1941-05-23) May 23, 1941 (age 78)
Coushatta, Red River Parish, Louisiana, USA
Political partyDemocratic
Spouse(s)Patricia A. Kelly (born ca. 1942)
ResidenceNatchitoches, Natchitoches Parish, Louisiana
OccupationAttorney; Quarter Horse breeder
Kelly could presumably have become president of the Louisiana State Senate for the asking, but instead he concentrating on steering dozens of projects to his north central Louisiana district.

Donald Gene Kelly, usually known as Don Kelly (born May 23, 1941), is a prominent trial lawyer and American Quarter Horse breeder in Natchitoches, Louisiana, who served as a Democratic member of the Louisiana State Senate from 1976 to 1996. His tenure covered three of the four terms of Democratic Governor Edwin Washington Edwards and the single gubernatorial terms of Republican David C. Treen and Democrat-turned-Republican Buddy Roemer.

In 1981, Treen appointed Kelly to the board of the newly-established statewide accelerated high school, the Louisiana School for Math, Science and the Arts in Natchitoches.[1]

In the 1975 nonpartisan blanket primary, also known as the jungle primary, the first ever held in Louisiana in which all candidates regardless of party appear on the same primary ballot, Kelly upset freshman Senator Paul Lee Foshee, Sr., of Natchitoches.[2] In Louisiana state and local (but no longer congressional) elections, the winner of the primary, or the runoff election (called the general election even if both finalists are of the same party designation), hence wins the office. In 1979, Kelly defeated Foshee's 23-year-old son, George Barnes Foshee (1956–2000). In 1987, Foshee, Sr., unsuccessfully challenged Kelly. In 1991, Kelly defeated 19-year-old Republican Randall T. Hayes, 29,410 votes (75.4 percent) to 9,599 (24.6 percent).[3] In 1995, Kelly did not seek a sixth term and was succeeded by fellow Democrat Kenneth Michael "Mike" Smith of Winnfield in Winn Parish and the traditional home of the Longs.[4]

Kelly worked closely with the Edwards administration to upgrade Northwestern State University in Natchitoches and to bring public works projects to his north central Louisiana district, which includes Natchitoches, Winn, Grant, Rapides, and Red River parishes. For a time De Soto and Sabine parishes were in District 31.[5] He was considered such a political powerhouse that he could have for the asking presumably become the Senate President, but he instead concentrated on the needs of his district.[6]

Kelly graduated from Red River Senior High School, then known as Coushatta High School in Coushatta, the seat of Red River Parish located thirty miles north of Natchitoches. He attended the University of Mississippi at Oxford and then NSU in Natchitoches. He obtained his law degree from Louisiana State University Law Center in Baton Rouge.[7]

In 2003, the Democrat Kelly contributed to the reelection campaign of Republican U.S. Representative Jim McCrery, whose Fourth District includes Natchitoches Parish. In 2004, Kelly gave the maximum $2,000 permitted under federal law to the Democratic presidential nominee, U.S. Senator John F. Kerry of Massachusetts.[8]

Kelly practices in the firm Kelly, Townsend & Thomas at 137 St. Denis Street in Natchitoches. He specializes in criminal law and retirement issues. The Townsend in the firm is William Lloyd Townsend, brother of Taylor Townsend and Kelly's nephew. He and his wife, Patricia A. Kelly (born ca. 1942), reside in Natchitoches.[9] Kelly's niece, Tracey Michelle Fulton, is a family law, estate planning and probate attorney at the Fulton Law Firm in Houston, Texas.

Kelly's quarter horse specimens have been particularly successful, having substantial earnings through the American Paint Horse Association of Fort Worth, Texas. One of his former legislative colleagues, Sixty Rayburn of Bogalusa, was also active in Louisiana horse racing.[10] Kelly is also active in the Natchitoches chapter of the sportsmen's organization Ducks Unlimited.[11]

On February 2, 2008, Kelly was among the annual inductees into the Louisiana Political Museum and Hall of Fame in Winnfield, one of the larger communities in Senate District 31. A previous holder of the Natchitoches Parish Senate seat, Sylvan Friedman, was posthumously inducted into the organization in 2006.[12]

Political offices
Preceded by
Paul L. Foshee
Louisiana State Senator for District 31 (now Grant, Natchitoches, Rapides, Red River, Sabine, and Winn parishes)

Donald Gene "Don" Kelly

Succeeded by
Kenneth Michael "Mike" Smith

YouTube Encyclopedic

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  1. ^ Louisiana Boards and Commissions Archived 2008-04-23 at the Wayback Machine
  2. ^ Intelius People Search - Public Records, Background Checks & More
  3. ^ "Election returns, October 19, 1991". Retrieved September 23, 2009.[dead link]
  4. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2007-12-01. Retrieved 2009-07-10.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  5. ^ CONTENTdm Collection : Search Results[permanent dead link]
  6. ^ The Town Talk - - Alexandria-Pineville, Louisiana[permanent dead link]
  7. ^ Louisiana State Senate > Senators > Archives
  8. ^ NATCHITOCHES, LA Political Contributions by Individuals
  9. ^ "Donald G. Kelly, Attorney at Law - Criminal Law - Natchitoches, Louisiana - Louisiana Lawyer Directory - Louisiana Attorney Directory". Archived from the original on 2008-10-11. Retrieved 2008-03-01.
  10. ^ PaintRacing.Com - Press Releases Archived 2007-09-11 at the Wayback Machine
  11. ^ DU Sponsors
  12. ^ "Louisiana Political Museum and Hall of Fame". Archived from the original on July 3, 2009. Retrieved August 22, 2009.
This page was last edited on 9 October 2019, at 20:53
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