The Blog Formerly Known As Practical Paralegalism
Karen Parker, a Paralegal Supervisor for Jefferson Parish in New Orleans, Louisiana, earns $64,000 per year, but now her qualifications for the job – and the existence of the job itself – are under intense scrutiny. Last month, FOX 8 News asked for a copy of her resume, as well as information regarding the paralegal certification required for the position.
But the parish response to the request has raised more eyebrows. Not only can Parker’s resume not be located, but “the Human Resources department claims it has no personnel records relating to her 18 years of employment.”
Parker is the ex-wife of former parish president Aaron Broussard, who resigned earlier this month during an ongoing federal criminal investigation of alleged corruption in his administration. Broussard was a controversial leader, facing heavy criticism and a class action lawsuit for implementing an outdated “doomsday” evacuation plan of pump operators in response to Hurricane Katrina, which caused severe flooding in the parish.
The parish council is planning to “introduce new legislation regarding the employment of elected official’s spouses.” Currently, a spouse can continue to work for the parish as long as they held the position prior to their spouse’s election.
Nola.com reports that Parker and Broussard were married “in 2004, 12 years after she started working in parish government and [a] year after Broussard was elected.” In August 2003, not long before they were married, she transferred to the Parish Attorney’s Office, to a newly created Paralegal Supervisor position with a starting salary of $48,000.00.
But now it turns out that Parker does not even work in the Parish Attorney’s Office, although she is still on its payroll. Parish Attorney Tom Wilkinson told FOX 8 News that Parker only physically worked in his office for a few months before being transferred to ID management, where the job duties include “clerical work and taking pictures of new employees.”
I think I could handle those duties for $64,000 a year and the word “supervisor” after my plain old paralegal job title.