Aug. 1, 2016 – Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards has appointed Jerri G. Smitko of Houma to the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission (LWFC). Smitko, who will serve as an elector of the coastal parishes and a representative of commercial fishing and fur industries, is an attorney and the owner of Smitko Law, APLC, in Houma.
Smitko, whose term runs until Jan. 7, 2022, will make her first appearance on the board during Thursday’s LWFC August meeting in Baton Rouge.
“As a lifelong sportswoman, a licensed commercial fisherman and an attorney with more than 30 years in practice, I understand how important the law is in protecting our natural resources,’’ said Smitko, who has one son, Maxwell Smitko. “I also have a deep appreciation for those who rely on those resources for their livelihood, sustenance and enjoyment. I am eager to champion the causes of our commercial fishermen and trappers who have served as the backbone of the bayou communities for generations.’’
Among her many positions held since graduating from Tulane Law School in 1986, Smitko was chair of the Louisiana Indigent Defense Assistance Board from 2006-09, was on the board of directors for the Terrebonne Parish Indigent Defenders Office from 2000-06 and on the board of commissioners of the Terrebonne General Hospital Service District No. 1 from 1997-2009.
She was also special legal counsel to Terrebonne Parish Consolidated Government from 1992-98 and the assistant parish attorney for the same body from 1988-92.
Smitko is a member of the American Bar Association, Louisiana and Terrebonne Parish bar associations and the Association of Trial Lawyers of America. She served in the Louisiana Army National Guard and U.S. Army Reserve until her honorable discharge in 1985.