New Orleans, LA
2009 Director’s Community Leadership Awards
|New Orleans||Rafael Goyeneche, III
New Orleans Metropolitan Crime Commission
Rafael Goyeneche is a New Orleans native and president of the New Orleans Metropolitan Crime Commission. He graduated from De La Salle High School, received his undergraduate degree from Louisiana State University, and received his Juris Doctorate from Loyola Law School. Upon graduation, Mr. Goyeneche served as an assistant district attorney in Orleans Parish from 1980 to 1986. During his tenure with the New Orleans District Attorney's Office, Mr. Goyeneche was appointed chief of the Economic Crime Unit, a unit responsible for investigating and prosecuting white collar crime.
Mr. Goyeneche has served as president of the New Orleans Metropolitan Crime Commission Inc. (MCC) for the past 20 years. The MCC was established on February 19, 1952, and has provided assistance on a continuing basis to the New Orleans-area community for over 50 years.
New Orleans is a unique city and has a history of corruption dating back to the 1920s. In fact, citizens and civic leaders founded the MCC to address crime and corruption. The MCC's mission is to identify, expose, and discourage corruption, fraud, ethical wrongdoing, and administrative violations at all levels of government within the Greater New Orleans region by reporting such activities to the appropriate authorities.
The MCC operates two hotlines—one in New Orleans and one in Baton Rouge—that enable the public to call in and report corruption, fraud, and administrative violations. Citizens who are reluctant to speak to the police or even the FBI feel comfortable reporting information to the Crime Commission. Mr. Goyeneche's staff has been trained to solicit information and encourage cooperation from complainants. Mr. Goyeneche will then personally provide this information to the appropriate authorities. Just within the last five years, the Crime Commission has provided information to the FBI which has directly contributed to more than 50 federal indictments for public corruption offenses. As an example, the Crime Commission identified an Orleans Parish assistant district attorney who used his official position to target his rape victims. A victim who was afraid to go to the police called the MCC, whose representatives then built a rapport and trust with her and convinced her to cooperate with the FBI. The subsequent investigation led to the federal indictment and conviction of the assistant district attorney for aggravated sexual assault.
Mr. Goyeneche's diligence to community service has had a dramatic impact on quality of life for the citizens. Mr. Goyeneche has established a zero tolerance policy for corruption at all levels of local government.