Women in State Law Enforcement leave indelible footprints
There are countless Louisianans who have contributed significantly to our state and nation’s history. They are the trailblazers and pioneers who have left an indelible imprint that continues to inspire.
Among the most well-trained law enforcement officers in the country, Black female Louisiana State Troopers are proudly and courageously paving the way for others to follow. They are saluted for their service and for inspiring all women to never give up on their dreams.
According to the most recent data, there are 1063 Louisiana State Police troopers, out of which 45 are women and of that number, eight current female troopers are African-American. Women were allowed to join the force in 1974. Trooper Joyce Stephanie Isaac Thibodeaux, now deceased, started her career with the Lafayette City Police Department and in 1976 she became the first Black woman to join the Louisiana State Police Dept. She retired after 21 years of service.
“I was fortunate to work with her,” said Lt. Charron Thomas who joined in 1992. “She faced a lot of struggles being the first one, and she gave me a lot of advice that helped me.”
“I consider myself fortunate to be able to stand on the shoulders of the previous Black female trailblazers such as Lt. Thomas and the late Trooper Thibodeaux,” said Senior Trooper Zuleika Joseph. “I hope that I set a good example for our youth and that some little girl who sees me may one day want to be a trooper or maybe even the superintendent of the Louisiana State Police.”