Nathan Keller makes history as first African American elected to Ward 3 Marshal seat

Published: Dec. 7, 2020 at 6:24 PM CST
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LAKE CHARLES, La. (KPLC) -After this past weekend, the 2020 election season is officially behind us.

There were plenty of victories, defeats, and even historic wins. On Saturday, Nathan Keller was elected the new Lake Charles City Marshal, becoming the first African American to hold the office.

Having already served 30 years in Lake Charles Law Enforcement, Nathan Keller made history Saturday winning the runoff against opponent Jerod Abshire for City Marshal.

Keller amassed 6,488 votes (63 percent) to Abshire’s 3,877 votes.

Click HERE for more results.

Keller and Abshire reached the runoff by receiving the most votes out of six candidates for Lake Charles City Marshal in the Nov. 3 election. Keller received 43 percent of the vote in that election, while Abshire received 20 percent.

“I’m ready, we are ready. Because this is not a race that I won, This is a race that we won. Ward 3 won,” said Keller.

Keller beat out Abshire with 63 percent of the vote. It’s the first time in the 159 year history of Lake Charles that an African American has been elected to the office.

“Especially in a time like now where so many people are displaced and so much is going on. We’re getting back to the foundation of who we are and that’s caring for people and that’s what the Marshal’s Office will be.”

Although campaigning may be over, Keller says he wants to work with his opponents to maximize and unify the office.

“What we have to understand is that we can’t be the smartest in the room. We have to put ourselves with other smart people where we can get and execute great ideas and truly grow,” Keller said.

Running for office this second time around he says was much different given all the challenges of 2020...but his platform remained the same.

To read more about Nathan Keller’s campaign for Ward 3 Marshal, click here.

“Law enforcement has gotten a bad rep these last several years and we’ve got a ways to go...having a seat at the table is so important,” said Keller. “I ran on that and I believe in that.”

With this win secured, and plenty of work ahead...he hopes his journey of persistence inspires the younger generation.

“This is history and it shows young kids that will come behind me that you don’t stop...regardless, of what occurs and how people say that it is not possible.”

Keller says his first plan of business once in office will be to interview everyone at the Marshal’s office in hopes of maximizing their potential. He’ll then focus efforts on deputy training and equipment.

A swearing-in ceremony is scheduled for January 2021.

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