West Baton Rouge Parish attorney Thomas W. “Tom” Acosta, Jr. announced his candidacy for the 18th Judicial District Court, Division B judgeship to be filled in a special election on March 24, 2018, saying that his over 30 year diverse Port Allen legal practice and 30 year exemplary military career make him the best candidate for the position.
“Residents of our great parishes of West Baton Rouge, Pointe Coupee and Iberville want as judge someone with proven sound judgment who is fair and honest,” the 61-year-old Addis resident said. “My leadership skills, work ethic, and life and legal experiences will help me to be a judge all people can trust to treat everyone – rich and poor, black and white, persons of all beliefs – with equal dignity and respect in rendering fair, sound and impartial judgments.”
Acosta, who has served as Brusly Town Attorney since 2006, has practiced law in Port Allen since 1986. He retired from the U.S. Army Reserve at the rank of colonel after 30 years of service – beginning with active duty in Germany following law school, followed by the Louisiana Army National Guard and ending in the U.S. Army Reserve. Upon his military retirement in 2008, Acosta received the Legion of Merit medal from Major General Harry “Skip” Phillips of the 377th Theater Sustainment Command – having closed his law office to mobilize and serve with the unit on active duty from 2001 thru 2003 in Kuwait and Iraq for Operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom. While serving in the Louisiana Army National Guard, he commanded the historic “Washington Artillery” 1-141 FA Battalion at Jackson Barracks in New Orleans.
Acosta is a graduate of Rice University and the Paul M. Hebert Law Center at Louisiana State University. He is active in many civic organizations, and takes great pride in being a 25-year member of the American Legion McKinley Bourg Post 160 in Port Allen. Acosta is an active 30-year member of the Port Allen Rotary Club, and in 2013-2014 served as District Governor of District 6200 of Rotary International – serving the 49 Clubs in the southern third of Louisiana. He currently serves as West Baton Rouge Museum Board Chairman. He is Deputy Grand Knight of Knights of Columbus Council 13632 at St. Joseph Cathedral, and is a 4th Degree Knight in Bishop Ott Assembly 2241. Acosta supports O’Brien House, which helps alcohol and drug addicts to recover and live sober lives. He is a 30-year member of the West Baton Rouge Parish Chamber of Commerce – having served 10 years on the Board of Directors and 2 years as Chairman from 1994 – 1996.
Acosta said he wants to focus attention in the courtroom on the growing opioid drug epidemic, saying: “West Baton Rouge is the only Parish in the 18th JDC without a drug court; I will work with the other judges to establish one.” His only son, William – then a 21-year-old history major at LSU on a TOPS scholarship – died two years ago of a heroin overdose. “No family should have to go what my family has gone through,” Acosta said. “Judges need to focus on this horrible issue impacting our community and country with compassion for those who have addiction issues and unwavering maximum sentences for anyone convicted of selling illegal drugs. Drug pushers coming to my courtroom will not have a pleasant experience.”
Acosta said he handled a wide variety of civil and criminal litigation matters in his first 16 years of law practice from 1985 until his post-9/11 active duty military service in late 2001. Since re-opening his office in 2004, Acosta said his current legal practice includes, in addition to serving as Brusly Town Attorney: real estate, title, wills, estate planning and probate/successions, and commercial formation. In the military, he served as Summary Courts-Martial Officer, on Special Courts-Martial Boards, and on prisoner of war tribunals in Iraq.
Acosta is married to Mary Broussard Acosta. They are very active at St. Joseph Cathedral. He is a lector there, and serves as altar server, lay Eucharist minister and lector for daily Mass at St. John the Baptist Catholic Church in Brusly. He is the stepson of Margaret Sarradet Acosta. His parents are the lateThomas W. “Bobbie” Acosta, Sr. (native of Plaquemine) and WBR native Shirley Mouch Acosta.
“I have lived my life the way my parents raised me,” he said. “I think my unique life and legal experience speaks for itself, and gives me the trusted judgment needed to be a fair and impartial judge for all. I look forward to talking to voters and convincing them I am the most qualified candidate to serve as their judge for the last 2 ½ years of this term.”