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Decades after his arrest for marching in favor of integration, Judge Calvin Johnson receives apology

In 1963, 16-year-old Calvin Johnson and a group of fellow Black students protested to integrate their schools in Plaquemine, Louisiana. The group was not only met with violence from the community and law enforcement, but Johnson was arrested and convicted of starting a riot.

While Johnson is now a successful Judge for Orleans Parish Criminal Court, the 75-year-old always wanted a formal apology on behalf of the state. And earlier this month he received just that.

Judge Calvin Johnson, along with Dean of Loyola Law School, Madeleine Landrieu – who presented the apology issued by Governor Edwards – join us to talk about the experience.

When the local school board in Selma, Alabama hired a new superintendent in 2017, the district had been in trouble for years. Avis Williams promised to turn things around, and she did. As Williams heads to New Orleans to lead the country’s only all-charter school system, WWNO’s Education reporter Aubri Juhasz takes a look at her impact on her previous school district.

Today’s episode of Louisiana Considered was hosted by Karen Henderson. Our managing producer is Alana Schreiber and our digital editor is Katelyn Umholtz. Our engineers are Garrett Pittman, Aubry Procell, and Thomas Walsh. 

You can listen to Louisiana Considered Monday through Friday at 12:00 and 7:30 pm. It’s available on Spotify, Google Play, and wherever you get your podcasts. 

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Karl Lengel has worked in the lively arts as an actor, announcer, manager, director, administrator and teacher. In broadcast, he has accumulated over two decades of on-air experience and is currently WWNO’s anchor for NPR’s “All Things Considered” and a host for “Louisiana Considered”. He holds a BS in Professional Management from Nova Southeastern University and an MFA in Film and Theatre from the University of New Orleans.
Alana Schreiber is the managing producer for the live daily news program, Louisiana Considered. She comes to WWNO from KUNC in Northern Colorado, where she worked as a radio producer for the daily news magazine, Colorado Edition. She has previously interned for Minnesota Public Radio in St. Paul and The Documentary Group in New York City.