This evening, Gov. John Bel Edwards issued the following statement on the death of Louisiana AFL- CIO Political Director Ernest Stephens.

"Ernest Stephens dedicated his life to improving the lives of hard-working men and women across Louisiana,” said Gov. Edwards. “It was his passion and his calling. A man of great integrity, he was well-liked and loved at the state Capitol, known for being generous with his kindness and wisdom and a fierce advocate for social and economic justice. For the last decade, he has been a supporter and dear friend. Ernest will always be remembered as someone who daily lived out his Christian faith. Please join me and Donna in praying for his wife, Irma, their children and grandchildren and all of those whose lives have been made better because of his care and commitment."