The Parish Attorney Selection Committee, which interviewed and scored each of the five applicants last week, gave the highest marks to Anderson Dotson and Greg Rome, both of whom currently work in the parish attorney’s office.
Committee members scored each candidate based on their interviews, as well as job-related experience, professional demeanor, communication, personality and suitability, according to an evaluation matrix sent to Metro Council members Friday and obtained by Daily Report. The combined maximum possible score was 400 points—or 100 from each of the four selection committee members.
Dotson, the interim parish attorney and former city prosecutor, received a combined score of 377. Rome, director of risk management and litigation in the parish attorney’s office, scored a total of 361 points.
The parish attorney post has been open since January when Lea Anne Batson abruptly resigned amid an effort to remove her from the job, led by Councilman LaMont Cole. He never gave a reason for the move and Batson stepped down before a removal hearing was held.
The three other applicants for the position are Elizabeth Rambin, a Baton Rouge attorney at Zurich American Insurance Company; La Koshia Roberts, a Lake Charles-based attorney and member of the Louisiana Ethics Board; and Joseph Scott, a Baton Rouge attorney who previously worked in the parish attorney’s office.
Roberts scored a combined 344.5 points, while Rambin received a score of 278, though she scored highest among the five in job-related experience.
Scott, meanwhile, was scored out of a total possible 300 points because one of the selection committee members, Michael Walsh, voluntarily recused himself, as he knows Scott and was listed as a professional reference. Scott received a score of 207.5 out of 300 points.
The selection committee members include Metro Council member and attorney Erika Green; Jeffrey Brooks, of the LSU Law Center; Kerii Landry-Thomas, of Southern University Law Center; and Walsh, of the Baton Rouge Bar Association. Councilman Trae Welch is also on the committee but was not present for the interviews and scoring.
The scores were submitted to Metro Council members, who are scheduled to hold a public hearing and vote on the next parish attorney at their Aug. 14 meeting.
“I think there are a lot of qualified candidates,” Green says. “Hopefully we can come up with a decision quickly.”
The Metro Council, however, is not bound by the selection committee’s scores, says council administrator Ashley Beck.
“They can pick whomever they want,” she says.