Joe Delpit

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Joseph Albert "Joe" Delpit, Sr.

Member of the
East Baton Rouge Parish Council ​
In office
1968​ – 1976​

Louisiana State Representative for District 63 (East Baton Rouge Parish)​
In office
1976 – 1992​
Preceded by
Succeeded by John Michael Guidry

Born January 9, 1940​
Baton Rouge, Louisiana
Political party Democrat
Spouse(s) Precious Robinson Delpt
Children ​Joseph Jr., Thomas, Deidre, Desiree, and Derrick

Thomas H. and Edmae Butler Delpit

Alma mater McKinley High School (Baton Rouge)

Southern University (Baton Rouge)

Occupation Businessman
(owner of The Chicken Shack)
Religion Roman Catholic

Joseph Albert Delpit, Sr., known as Joe Delpit (born January 9, 1940), is an African-American businessman from his native Baton Rouge, Louisiana, who from 1976 to 1992 was a Democratic state representative for District 67. Earlier, he was the first black to serve on the East Baton Rouge Parish Commission, the combined city-parish government.

Since 1959, Delpit has owned and operated The Chicken Shack restaurant, a company begun in 1935 by his father, Thomas H. Delpit, with virtually no capital. He is also the president of D & W Health Services, Inc., which operates the nursing home known as The Oaks of Mid City. He is the secretary-treasurer of W. T.B., Inc., a corporation that operates a nursing home in Shreveport, known as the Booker T. Washington Nursing Center. Delpit and his wife, the former Precious Robinson, have five children: Joseph Jr., Thomas, Deidre, Desiree, and Derrick. He also has eleven grandchildren. Delpit attended St. Francis Xavier Catholic Elementary School and graduated from McKinley Senior High School in Baton Rouge. He attended historically black Southern University in Baton Rouge, at which he received credits in business administration and nutrition[1]

Delpit has served on the finance board for St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church and is a board member of the Baranco-Clark YMCA. A civil rights activist, he is a former president of the Baton Rouge chapter of the NAACP, and served on the City-Parish Bi-Racial Committee, and the Legislative Black Caucus. He is a former board member of the Capitol Regional Planning Commission and the Greater Baton Rouge Port Commission. A charter member of the McKinley High School Alumni Association, Inc., he acted as the project management chairman for the restoration of the old McKinley building.[1]

Delpit was elected to the state House in the first-ever nonpartisan blanket primary on November 1, 1975. He served on these committees: Municipal and Parochial Affairs, Agriculture, and Appropriations. In 1983, he won his third term as state representative without opposition. On March 12, 1984, he was elected Speaker Pro Tempore and became the highest-ranking African-American elected official in Louisiana since Reconstruction. In 1987, Delpit won reelection by 182 votes to secure his fourth term and final term. In a runoff with fellow Democrat Darrell Wayne Glasper (born 1953), Delpit prevailed 3,318 (51 percent) to 3,136 (49 percent).[2]

Delpit works with his children and grandchildren in the continued family operation of The Chicken Shack. His eldest child, Joe Delpit, Jr., of Baker, Louisiana, died at the age of sixty-one on November 6, 2019.[3]


  1. 1.0 1.1 Joe Delpit Tabbed as Keynote Speaker for Hall of Fame Ceremony at Southern University. (April 17, 2009). Retrieved on November 12, 2019.
  2. Louisiana Secretary of State, Election Returns, October 24, 1987.
  3. Joseph Albert Delpit, Jr. (1958-2019). The Baton Rouge Advocate (November 11, 2019). Retrieved on November 12, 2019.