In the Spring of 2018, Royce Duplessis was elected to serve as State Representative for District 93 in New Orleans, Louisiana. District 93 includes Central City, Central Business District, Lower Garden District, French Quarter, Lower Mid-City, Treme’, 7th Ward, and St. Roch neighborhoods. Prior to serving in the Legislature, he worked as Special Counsel for the Louisiana Supreme Court and served as Chairman of the New Orleans City Planning Commission. Royce is a Past President of the Louis A. Martinet Legal Society. Since 2012, he has volunteered as a mentor to male teenagers through the nationally-renowned Silverback Society.
Royce ran for public office in order to better serve those who are underserved and marginalized—with a focus on living wages for the working class, increased access to quality early childhood education, and smarter criminal justice policies. His committee assignments include House and Governmental Affairs (Vice-Chair), Commerce, and House Executive Committee.
Royce was raised in a home that fostered concern for others and the belief that everyone deserves fair treatment and the opportunity to succeed in life. One of Royce’s first examples was his father, who served children with disabilities as an Adapted Physical Education Teacher for the Orleans Parish School System. Royce also inherited an entrepreneurial spirit from his grandparents, who owned and operated a small corner grocery store during the 1950s-70s. Royce worked summers in high school as a bricklayer’s assistant, and he supported himself by earning tips working as a busboy at Mandina’s Restaurant while attending Xavier University.
After living through the devastation of Hurricane Katrina, Royce discovered a deeper calling for service.
He immersed himself into rebuilding his community by serving as Chief of Staff to former New Orleans City Councilmember James Carter. He then moved to Washington, DC to attend Howard University School of Law, where he founded the Howard Energy and Environmental Law Society to advocate for environmental justice. He also worked as an intern at the Environmental Protection Agency and the White House Council on Environmental Quality. After serving as a law clerk for Judge Thomas J. Motley on the Superior Court of the District of Columbia, Royce returned home to practice energy law with a multinational law firm.
As Special Counsel for the Louisiana Supreme Court for several years, Royce championed criminal justice reform after observing the human impact of inefficiencies and inequities in our criminal justice system. He worked to change the system by spearheading the management of a half-million dollar grant to develop and adopt better practices for the assessment and collection of court costs, fines and fees. In addition, he fought to protect and preserve the character of New Orleans’ historic neighborhoods as Chairman of the New Orleans City Planning Commission, while nurturing social innovation and improving the quality of life for all residents.
Since 2012, Royce has volunteered as a mentor to male teenagers through the nationally-renowned Silverback Society. He is a Past President of the Louis A. Martinet Legal Society, Inc., and used his presidency to increase the society’s commitment to legal access by conducting numerous free legal service and outreach clinics across the City. He is also the co-founder and Past President of the A.P. Tureaud, Sr. Legacy Committee, with the mission to honor the legacy of preeminent Louisiana civil rights attorney, A.P. Tureaud, Sr., and to educate the public about the remarkable contributions of other social justice heroes.
Royce’s leadership and dedication to community and public service has been recognized by the Childcare Association of Louisiana (2019 Legislator of the Year), and the New Orleans Regional Leadership Institute (2017 Fellow; Leadership Award Recipient). He was also honored as one of Xavier University of Louisiana’s 2015 40 Under 40, is a member of the Education Leadership Institute (2016 Fellow), and the New Leaders Council (2014 Fellow). In 2012, Royce was elected to serve on the Orleans Parish Democratic Executive Committee.
Royce is a graduate of St. Augustine High School, Xavier University of Louisiana and Howard University School of Law. He is a practicing attorney and operates a solo law practice, with a focus on civil litigation. He is married to Krystle Ferbos Duplessis, and they are proud parents of one daughter, Reese. They reside in Central City.