United States Attorney's Office Says Goodbye To Two Outstanding Assistant U.S. Attorneys
SHREVEPORT, La. – United States Attorney Stephanie A. Finley announced the retirement of Assistant U.S. Attorneys Josette L. Cassiere and Robert A. “Bob” Thrall, who served in the Western District of Louisiana with more than 45 years of combined experience. Cassiere and Thrall were honored on November 21, 2013, at a retirement ceremony held at the U.S. Courthouse in Shreveport. Their last day with the office was November 30, 2013.
“We are losing talented, dedicated lawyers and public servants,” Finley stated. “Throughout their careers, Josette and Bob have played integral roles in prosecuting cases with our office. Their years of service and dedication to the Department of Justice are a true testament of their commitment to justice and the citizens of this district. They will be greatly missed, and we wish them the very best as they start the next chapters of their lives. I am grateful for their tireless advocacy on behalf of the Western District.”
Josette Cassiere began her career with the U.S. Attorney’s Office in March of 1989. She served one year in the civil division, concentrating on land condemnation cases for the Red River Waterway project and collections with the Financial Litigation Unit (FLU). From 1990 to 2001, Cassiere was responsible for all of the District’s criminal appeals to the Fifth Circuit. Beginning in 2001, she was primarily responsible for criminal appeals generated by the Shreveport Division of the office. In 23 years of appellate practice, Cassiere has filed approximately 700 briefs and argued more than 100 appeals at the Fifth Circuit, including one en banc rehearing and several cases involving res nova issues.
Cassiere received a Bachelor’s Degree in Music from Alverno College in Milwaukee, Wis., in 1970, and taught in the Elmbrook School District in Wisconsin for four years before attending law school. She received her Juris Doctorate from the Louisiana State University School of Law in 1977. Josette Cassiere and Robert Gillespie Jr., also an assistant U.S. attorney, have been married for 36 years, and have three children, Sarah, Paul and Michael.
“My time at the U.S. Attorney’s Office has been both challenging and extremely satisfying both from the perspective of service to the law and the legal system and from the perspective of service to community and country,” Cassiere stated. “It is with mixed feelings that I leave that office which, in my opinion, is one of the best law firms in this state.”
Bob Thrall began his career with the U.S. Attorney’s Office in 1991, primarily handling bankruptcy, foreclosures, and collection efforts for the FLU. He also handled defensive litigation involving federal programs and complex financial litigation. Since September 2011, Thrall handled the bankruptcy referrals for the entire District. The District has consistently been one of the 10 districts with the greatest number of Chapter 13 filings in the nation and one of the heaviest districts with overall bankruptcy filings. Although his primary clients have been the IRS and the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Thrall has handled cases and bankruptcy matters for federal agencies, to include the Small Business Administration, HUD, Department of Education, FEMA, EPA, the Army Corps of Engineers, ATF, the Federal Bureau of Prisons and the Veterans Administration.
Thrall graduated Magna Cum Laude from Louisiana Tech University with a bachelor’s degree of arts in political science in 1975 and received his Juris Doctorate from the University of Oregon’s School of Law in 1979. Bob Thrall is married to Blair Thrall, an accomplished artist. They have been married more than 17 years and have two sons, Brent and Wesley, and one daughter, Erica.
From left, Assistant U.S. Attorney Robert A. "Bob" Thrall, U.S. Attorney Stephanie A. Finley,
and Assistant U.S. Attorney Josette L. Cassiere