Convicted felon Derrick Shepherd asking two courts to stop his ouster from House race _lowres

Advocate file photo by MATTHEW HINTON-- Former state Sen. Derrick Shepherd signs up to run for Louisiana House District 87 at the Jefferson Parish Government Building in Gretna, La. on Sept. 10, 2015. 

Hey, you know what would really restore New Orleans' trust in the troubled Sewerage & Water Board? What if we put a convicted criminal in charge?

That’s just one idea floated by Derrick Shepherd, the former legislator who went to prison in 2010 for money laundering and who caused a stir in December when he showed up at Mayor-elect LaToya Cantrell's meeting with current lawmakers.

In an interview with The New Orleans Advocate this week, Shepherd, who appears to be waging an all-out redemption tour, also said he'd be willing to help Cantrell start an office that helps ex-offenders re-enter society, which at least is a little more up his alley.

It would help if his efforts didn't appear entirely focused on one ex-offender in particular.

It would also help if he appeared to have changed his slippery ways, but Shepherd hasn't exactly been forthright since the controversy broke. He initially deferred questions about his presence at the meeting to Cantrell, who took too long to finally say she was not considering giving him a role in her administration. He now says he found out about the meeting from the pastor of the church where it was held, but wouldn't provide a name.

It's worth remembering that Shepherd's not some guy who never got a break, who languished in prison because of a low-level drug arrest. At the time of his offense, he was a lawyer and sitting officeholder with a bright future.

Sure, he deserves a second chance to make a living, like anyone else. But another position of public trust?

Shepherd's got a lot more redeeming to do if he wants to earn that. 

Follow Stephanie Grace on Twitter, @stephgracela.