- In District 5, two St. Rose residents are vying to become Justice of the Peace, a long time fire chief defending his position against the challenge of a practicing attorney and notary public as Paul Hymel, no party, and Kellie Fox, a Democrat, are on the ballot.
The incumbent is Hymel, a lifelong resident of St. Charles Parish who has lived in St. Rose since 1988, served as the president of the St. Rose Volunteer Fire Department for 10 years and chief for 10 years. He ran for and won the open position of Justice of the Peace in 2017 because, he says, he enjoys helping and serving his community and his district.
“I am a proven leader,” Hymel said. “I make my decisions based on the law and facts. Since I have taken this position, I have handled 300 plus cases regarding eviction and small claims court.”
Hymel graduated from Destrehan High School in 1983 and has been captain of the Nine Mile Point Fire Company since 1996. He is married and a proud father of six children and grandfather to five.
He ran unopposed for the position in 2017.
Fox is the challenger. She is a St. Rose native and also a graduate of Destrehan High School before earning a criminal justice degree at Loyola University-New Orleans. She works as a notary public and a managing partner at Pelican Law Group LLC, where she oversees the Civil Law department.
She’s running for the position because she says she believes in the importance of doing something outside of oneself.
“I understand the level of care that is vital during this time when perspectives are so polarizing,” Fox said. “I want to serve my community in the capacity of Justice of the Peace because it’s where I can provide the most help for the greatest number of people.”
She said she’s also been inspired this year by the resilience of those who have suffered loss in a trying year. Fox says she has more to offer to the position than Hymel, noting that as a notary public, she has full notary powers beyond that granted via the Justice of the Peace position.
“I can provide more knowledge and legal services than my opponent … I have extensive experience regarding the law and court systems,” Fox said.