I am happy to announce that the RIACDL Executive Committee has established
the John J Hardiman Community Grant to honor Rhode Island Public Defender
John J. Hardiman, a tremendous public servant and defense attorney. John
was a role model and mentor for countless criminal defense attorneys. He
was a gifted advocate, as passionate in his beliefs as he was compassionate
for his clients.
John believed in and put into action the idea of holistic representation,
addressing not only the immediate criminal accusation facing a client, but
the mental health, economic, substance abuse, and other fundamental issues
that are so often at the root of the criminal accusation.
John was born and raised in Providence and loved his community. He always
encouraged his staff to be active in the community, and over his time as
Public Defender he made that office part of the community beyond simply
representing the indigent accused.
A John Hardiman Community Grant of up to $3,000 will be awarded annually to
a Rhode Island community-based non-profit organization that will use the
grant to better the lives of needy individuals in the community John loved.
The Hardiman Grant for 2015 has been awarded to the Open Recreation Program
of Child & Family - specifically a year round basketball program for
underprivileged youths in the Eddy Street neighborhood of Providence.
Typically there are 25 to 30 kids in the program, ranging in age from 6 to
25. The grant will go towards equipment, uniforms, snacks, gym rental,
travel and other costs.
This is a great cause which keeps youth occupied with positive activity,
contributing to overall social health. I am sure John would be delighted
with the grant and this recipient. We are proud to give the grant in his