The parkway will be renamed to honor Norman C. Francis, who was a longtime president of New Orleans’ historically black Catholic university, Xavier University.
“This is a unique opportunity for the leaders of New Orleans to rename the Jefferson Davis Parkway and celebrate a beloved local leader, Norman C. Francis, while embracing progress for American society,” Harris said in the letter. “The people of New Orleans deserve the opportunity to learn about this leader who is shaping their city for the better.”
Moreno read portions of Harris’ letter during Thursday’s city council meeting. Francis is a “beacon for civil rights and equality in our city” and a recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, Moreno said.
The name change will be effective January 1, 2021, according to the city council.