“Louis Wilson led by example and rose to the occasion, no matter the challenge he faced. He set the standard for excellence in client service. His strong character and legal expertise were critical to the success of our firm during a period of growth, and we are where we are today thanks to Louis’ leadership. We are grateful for Louis’ many contributions to the firm, to the legal profession, and to the community."
— Gif Thornton, Managing Partner
We are saddened by the death of our partner, colleague, and friend, Louis A. Wilson, who passed away January 26, 2021, at the age of 78. Louis will be fondly remembered and deeply missed by all whose lives he touched, both personally and professionally.
Louis joined the firm in January 1970. He was a pillar of the firm’s New Orleans office and its presence in the city as well as throughout the state of Louisiana. As a member of the Transactions Practice Group, Louis had a distinguished career and focused his practice on general corporate, commercial finance, mergers and acquisitions, banking and other matters related to commercial activities.
During the 1970s and early 1980s, Louis was one of the leading Louisiana attorneys doing transactional work in the oilfield marine service and construction industries. A go-to lawyer for many heavy hitters in the industry, Louis represented companies such as George Engine Company, Trico Marine, Inc., and Harvey Gulf International, Inc. Louis did extensive financing work for companies including Westinghouse, ITT, Equilease, Litton, International Paper Company, and numerous banks, including Chase Manhattan Bank on a national level.
Leading up to his retirement, Louis continued to represent major clients of the firm, primarily in the oil and transportation industries. He performed commercial finance work for most of Louisiana’s major banks and prior to his retirement handled United States Maritime Administration guaranteed financings of $60 million and $140 million, the latter of which represented a unique financing that had never before been undertaken by the Maritime Administration.
We are grateful for Louis’ dedication to firm management and for his leadership in the roles in which he served. Adams and Reese became a better—and stronger—firm thanks to Louis. Throughout the years, he served in leadership roles as the firm successfully expanded throughout the Southeast. Louis was a member of the Executive Committee from 1990–1992 and again from 1997–1999. Louis also served on the Compensation Committee from 1991–1993 and 1998–2000. Louis retired from the partnership on December 31, 2000 and served as Of Counsel from that point until 2002.
Louis will be remembered as a mentor who shaped the careers and paths of many Adams and Reese attorneys. His legacy of excellence continues through the many lawyers he worked with who remain with the firm today. It is thanks to the character and leadership of lawyers like Louis that Adams and Reese has grown to prominence and continues as a successful law firm 70 years after its founding.
A proponent of the arts, Louis was a proud supporter of the Contemporary Arts Center in New Orleans. He was a member of the Krewe of Alla, one of the oldest parading organizations in New Orleans. Louis embodied the spirit of the firm’s commitment to community and the kind-heartedness that binds us all.
Louis’ daughter, Theresa Wilson, is a paralegal in the firm’s New Orleans office who has been with the firm since January 1987. We extend our heartfelt condolences and deepest sympathies to Theresa and her family, other members of Louis’ family, Louis’ friends, and Louis’ former colleagues.
Details about arrangements and service information will be forthcoming.