James Gill’s column on Jay Lapeyre was a clear example of vicious and totally biased editorial hogwash if ever there was one. Obviously he has done little research on Jay Lapeyre, who is, without question, one of the most decent, honorable, conscientious and public-spirited persons in this world, let alone the city. To infer he is a “shameless political hack” and “the beau ideal of unethical officialdom” is shameful, and Gill should promptly retract those words and apologize to Jay. Jay was not “born to millions,” but yes, he did joined a company founded by his father and family, but when he did, it was struggling to survive. By his leadership, it is now, years later, one of the finest companies in America. Then, after Hurricane Katrina, he has worked tirelessly to correct the age-old corrupt Levee Board dominance of local flood protection and the unscrupulous property assessor mess in the state. I have known Jay personally for over 30 years and can attest to his veracity, goodness and high moral character. He has been the chairman of Tulane University’s Board of Administrators, chairman of Newman School, chairman of the Cato Institute, and all of these distinguished institutions will agree that Jay is one of the true honorable leaders in America. Gill’s character assassination is a gross injustice to a great person.

James Gundlach


New Orleans