Term Ends: 2024
Party: R

Jewel E. “Duke” Welch, Jr. is a judge of the First Circuit Court of Appeal in Louisiana. He was first elected to this position in 2004. He was re-elected in 2014 for a term beginning on January 1, 2015, and expiring on December 31, 2024.

Welch received his B.S. in business management from the University of Maryland in 1977, and his J.D. from the Louisiana State University Paul M. Hebert Law Center in 1980. He later earned his master’s degree in judicial studies from the University of Nevada-Reno in 2009. He is a Master of Laws candidate at Pepperdine University. Welch also taught at the LSU Paralegal Program from 1998 to 2004 and has served as an adjunct professor of law at the Southern University Law Center since 1997.

Prior to his election to the Louisiana First Circuit Court of Appeal, Welch was a judge in the 19th Judicial District Court from 1995-2004. Welch ran for re-election in the 1st Circuit Court of Appeal as an unopposed candidate and was automatically re-elected without appearing on the ballot.