Becnel reelected Div. B judge in St. John

Published 5:59 am Saturday, November 8, 2014

By Monique Roth

EDGARD — Incumbent Judge Mary Becnel, who serves Division B of St. John the Baptist Parish’s 40th Judicial Court, was victorious Tuesday night as she defeated Rob Snyder, a Democrat from LaPlace, who was contending her position on the bench.

Becnel earned 81.16 percent of the vote, with 3,098 votes cast her way. Snyder earned 719 votes.

“I’m very pleased with the results and very happy the people of St. John Parish reelected me and gave me another term to serve them,” Becnel said.

Becnel said she has worked in the legal system for more than 40 years, starting out as a secretary and court reporter before working her way through school to become a lawyer — and ultimately — a judge. Becnel said during more than two decades on the bench she has taken seriously the position as a public servant beyond her judicial duties.

“As a judge, I have had the opportunity to observe problems in our community that cannot be solved in the normal course of business,” she said. “Therefore, I have reached out and initiated Truancy Court and CHARM School for the benefit of at-risk youth and families.”

Becnel said “Truancy Court addresses the problems of families and students that are much deeper than simply failing to attend school.”

Instituted in January 2006, Becnel designed CHARM School for female juveniles charged with disruptive or ungovernable behavior. The program also reaches out to females dealing with personal and/or family issues, as well as other types of behavior problems.

Becnel said CHARM School provides females with alternatives to inappropriate behavior through instruction in good manners and conflict resolution and by defining and developing Character, Health, Attitude, Respect and Manners.

She said her record reflects her dedication, and she will continue to grow programs during her new term.

“As things come up I will certainly take the time and energy to implement whatever needs to be done,” Becnel said.