Kevin Kane, Founder of Conservative ‘Think Tank’ in New Orleans, Dies at 50

Kevin Kane, president and founder of the Pelican Institute for Public Policy, a conservative and libertarian “think tank” in New Orleans, died at a New Orleans hospice Thursday of gastrointestinal cancer. He was 50.

“Kevin was a thoughtful, soft-spoken, highly intelligent and principled man who loved New Orleans deeply,” said Quin Hillyer, the New Orleans-born writer.

Nearly a year after Hurricane Katrina struck New Orleans, Kane and Deroy Murdock, a columnist at National Review Online, talked about creating a policy institute to push conservative ideas for the city’s rebuilding, Hillyer said.

Kane was living in New York at the time but wanted to return to New Orleans, where he had gone to college, because he “felt such a deep impulse to help New Orleans recover,” Hillyer said.

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