The next time the Jefferson Parish Council meets in its West Bank chambers, it will be doing so in a room named after Anthony P. “Tony” DiGerolamo, who worked under four parish presidents before his death about two years ago.
On Wednesday, Jefferson Councilman Ricky Templet — for whom DiGerolamo also worked — won passage of a measure to rename the Gretna chambers after the man affectionately called “Tony D,” credited by many as being the main reason the parish government complex that opened on Derbigny Street in 2004 was built.
“This,” Templet said of his measure, “is a great tribute to the respect we had for him and that he had for our parish.”
DiGerolamo began working for Jefferson as the director of fleet management under Parish President Michael J. Yenni, who took office in 1987. He then oversaw various departments — from libraries and recreation to the animal shelter and general services — under Yenni’s successors Tim Coulon, Aaron Broussard and Steve Theriot over the next couple of decades.
During that time, those speaking in support of Templet’s measure said, DiGerolamo was at the forefront of coordinating parish efforts to build the General Government Building that today houses facilities used by the council and administrative officials and is connected to the 24th Judicial District Courthouse.
Coulon on Wednesday recalled that discussions about the building were generally one-way, with DiGerolamo telling everyone what needed to happen before he went out and made sure it got done.
After 2012, following Broussard’s resignation in the wake of a corruption scandal that sent him to federal prison, DiGerolamo became an aide to Templet.
He had been battling brain cancer when he died at his home in Terrytown on Christmas Day 2013 at age 67.
Templet said a plaque honoring DiGerolamo will eventually hang from the rear of the Parish Council chambers in Gretna. The council, which alternates meetings between the east and west banks, will next meet in its Gretna chambers on Feb. 17.