The former congressman who introduced Gov. Bobby Jindal to Louisiana politics was named by the governor Thursday to the LSU Board of Supervisors.
Retired U.S. Rep. Jim McCrery, a Shreveport Republican, was appointed to fill a vacancy on the 16-member board that oversees LSU’s campuses and hospitals. McCrery, 64, replaced Buddy Roemer in the U.S. House in 1988, when Roemer became governor. He served on the Ways and Means Committee from 1993 through 2008. He also was chairman of the Select Revenue Measures Subcommittee and chairman of the Social Security Subcommittee. He also served for 14 years as a member of the Health Subcommittee and helped pass the Balanced Budget Act of 1997 and the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act of 2003.
He left Congress in January 2009.
McCrery recalled for CBS in May 2012 that Jindal, as a 20-year-old summer intern from Brown University, walked into his office asking for an assignment more challenging than filing. He asked Jindal to write a paper on Medicare and detail how to solve its issues. Jindal delivered two weeks later.
“I read it, and it was excellent,” McCrery told CBS. “For him to grasp as well as he did the Medicare program in such a short period of time was nothing short of amazing.”
Now a Washington lobbyist with Capitol Counsel LLC, McCrery handles clients with tax, trade and health care issues.
McCrery replaces Shreveport doctor John George, who abruptly resigned his seat on the LSU Board after questions were raised about his relationship with the private foundation that took over management of LSU hospitals in Shreveport and Monroe. The LSU board is composed of 15 gubernatorial appointments, who are subject to state Senate confirmation and serve six-year terms, plus one student member, who serves a one-year term. McCrery will serve as a representative of the 4th Congressional District, as required by statute.
The highly sought-after gubernatorial appointments don’t pay, but there are other perks, including suite accommodations at Tiger football games and tickets to other athletic events, as well as the bonus of being able to hand out 20 scholarships per year to LSU system schools.
McCrery, who grew up in Leesville, graduated from Louisiana Tech University in 1971. He received his law degree from LSU in 1975.