Board of Aldermen name Jack Lazarus city attorney

Published 9:08 pm Tuesday, December 19, 2023

NATCHEZ — After an executive session of approximately one-half hour, the Natchez Board of Aldermen unanimously voted to name Natchez attorney and Municipal Court Judge Pro-Tem Jack Lazarus as city attorney.

Lazarus will begin his work on Jan. 1, 2024, replacing Bryan Callaway, who has served as city attorney for almost four years — all of Natchez Mayor Dan Gibson’s administration.

Callaway is going to work as a staff attorney from Sixth District Circuit Court Judge Debra Blackwell.

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The Board of Aldermen will need to appoint a new municipal judge because current municipal judge Lisa Jordan Dale has resigned to become a member of Sixth Circuit District Attorney Tim Cotton’s office. The board will also need to appoint a new municipal court judge pro tem because of Lazarus’ acceptance of the city attorney position.

Gibson said Lazarus has served the city of Natchez well for 40 years.

“You are someone who has experience in the attorney general’s office, someone who has worked for everyone from governors to just the average person next door, someone who has served honorably as our judge pro tem. You have knowledge not only of civil matters but also of criminal matters. Also, you’ve been involved in land acquisitions, and rights of way, even back in the day when land was being acquired for the Mississippi River bridge project. I just wanted to share that background on you and say while we are sad to see Mr. Callaway go, we are grateful to have someone of your caliber step in,” Gibson said.

“I want to say how honored and humbled I am to be appointed as the city attorney. I will do everything in my power to uphold that trust and confidence. And, I look forward to working with Bryan. I will need Bryan’s help and the help of the board. This will be a new experience for me and I will be on-the-job training from Day One,” Lazarus said.

The mayor and aldermen in executive session also discussed a police personnel discipline matter, which Callaway said would remain private.