The Pelican Institute for Public Policy believes every person should have the opportunity to flourish. The Institute’s mission is to research and develop policy solutions to address the most significant barriers to opportunity in Louisiana. We educate the public about the benefits of individual liberty and free enterprise, turning great ideas into powerful policy solutions that make a meaningful difference in people’s lives.

To fulfill this mission, the Pelican Institute engages in:


Produces timely, data-based research and practical solutions for how to build a freer, more prosperous future for every Louisianan


Tells the story of free enterprise and promotes pro-opportunity policy solutions to citizens and lawmakers from every walk of life


Facilitates public dialogue and persuades citizens of the benefits of our policy solutions through community meetings, policy-focused events, commentaries, news media interviews, digital engagement, and grassroots participation


Challenges government overreach and barriers to human flourishing in the courts by representing clients before local, state, and federal courts


Trains and networks community leaders across Louisiana to engage in public policy debates and speak up on behalf of policies that advance opportunity and human flourishing.


We believe Louisiana is the best and most unique place in the world. Louisianans live life to the fullest and exude a joie de vivre envied the world around. And, yet, too many are left behind or driven to other places by misguided policies. Our state should be a place where people of all talents, interests, and backgrounds can succeed with hard work and ingenuity. We want everyone to live, work, and prosper in a state where communities flourish and good opportunities abound.

We execute this mission thanks to the generosity and partnership of individuals and organizations who share our commitment to opportunity and human flourishing. The Pelican Institute does not accept government funds or contributions to influence the outcomes of its research.



The Pelican Institute was founded in 2008 by Kevin Kane, who led the organization until his untimely death in October of 2016. A well-respected leader on free-market public policy, his work, alongside other partners in the state, led to the passage in 2017 of landmark criminal justice reforms. Many individuals and organizations celebrated Kevin’s accomplishments and noted his passing, including The Times-PicayuneState Policy NetworkThe Advocate, and Gambit.