I want to express my sincere gratitude to Gov. Bobby Jindal for recommending me for appointment to the State Ethics Board. I was humbled and feel it was one of greatest professional honors ever bestowed upon me. When asked to serve in this role, I enthusiastically accepted. The work of this board is important, and helps ensure the ethical standards I firmly believe in and live by, every day.

After learning Sen. Bob Kostelka had deferred my nomination, I was understandably disappointed. To say this action has caused both me and my family great humiliation, consternation and embarrassment would be a gross understatement. With that said, let me be clear that I hold absolutely no ill will toward Sen. Kostelka. I respect whatever his motivation was in declining my nomination. I did make numerous attempts to reach out to Sen. Kostelka, but, unfortunately, never heard back from him. I thank him for his years of public service and for the fine work he has done.

My family and I are very appreciative to the many people who have taken their time to contact us and share words of encouragement. The overwhelming display of support that has come from these individuals will never be forgotten.

I am grateful to Gov. Jindal for appointing me to the Board of Ethics and was honored for the two months I was permitted to conduct the work of the board and to serve the people of the great state of Louisiana. Hopefully, I will one day be given another opportunity to serve my profession and community in a similar volunteer capacity. Until that time, I completely support whomever Sen. Kostelka recommends for this position and have confidence that he or she will do an outstanding job.

Mark J. Neal