Champions for Justice

Please join us on Friday, May 6, 2022 for a special evening that celebrates and supports the students, alumni, partners and friends whose exceptional devotion to social justice increases access to justice for all.

Registration for Champions for Justice has closed.  If you are still interested in attending, please call the Special Events Office at 401-254-3166.

May 6, 2022

5:30 PM                  Registration & Reception
6:15 PM                  Champions for Justice Dinner, Awards & Auction

Online Auction

Questions? | Special Events |

The Impact

Champions for Justice is quickly becoming a hallmark of the Rhode Island legal landscape, and we are proud to count so many as friends and supporters of the Law School. Proceeds from the evening benefit the many social justice programs within RWU Law:

Alternative Spring Break
Pro Bono Collaborative
Public Interest Clinical Externships
Public Interest Summer Stipends
RWU Law Clinics

Social Justice Program Highlights

Thank You To Our 2022 Sponsors:

Champions for Justice Presenting Sponsors


Champions Presenting Sponsor

MB&M Ltd

Champions for Justice Title Sponsor

The Smith-Kushmerick Family

Champions for Justice Program Sponsors

Deluca & Associates


Champions Title Sponsor 2

Jenna Hashway, Esq. L’11 and John Barylick, Esq.

Reception Sponsor

ACS Industries

APS Logo

Law logo

Event Sponsors

Law logo

Brian P. Stern

Law logo

George L. Santopietro, Esq.

Law logo

Law logo

Joann Denapoli Charitable Foundation Inc.


Law logo


Sloane and Walsh

If you are interested in sponsorship opportunities, please contact Matt Devecchi at or 401-254-3735.

Champion for Justice - 2022

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The Honorable O.Rogeriee Thompson'10HL

Judge Thompson

Judge Thompson was appointed to the First Circuit Court of Appeals in March 2010. She graduated from Brown University in 1973 and Boston University School of Law in 1976. She worked as a Staff Attorney at Rhode Island Legal Services from 1976 to 1979. From 1979 to 1988, she worked in private practice, and she served as an Assistant City Solicitor in Providence, Rhode Island from 1980 to 1982. She served as a Judge on the Rhode Island District Court from 1988 to 1997, and as a Justice on the Rhode Island Superior Court from 1997 to 2010. She currently sits on RWU Law's Board of Directors.

Alumni Public Interest Champion - 2022

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Akin Adepoju'07


Akin Adepoju is Assistant Federal Defender for the District of Delaware and the Western District of Pennsylvania, where he served in both the Trial and Capital Habeas Units. He has also handled cases before the U.S. Court of Appeals. Before joining the Federal Defenders, Adepoju worked with the Fair Trial Initiative in North Carolina, focusing on capital trial cases. His practice now focuses on complex criminal matters, including representing those sentenced to death. Adepoju earned his B.A. at the University of Maryland, College Park, his J.D. from RWU Law, and his LL.M. from Temple University School of Law as a Public Interest Scholar.

Community Partner Champion - 2022

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Rhode Island Legal Services, Inc.


Rhode Island Legal Services provides high quality legal assistance and representation to low-income individuals and eligible client groups for the purpose of improving their economic condition and overall wellbeing by protecting and enforcing legal rights, stabilizing the family unit and communities where clients live, promoting self-reliance, ending domestic violence, preventing homelessness, affording dignity to all people, and reaching out to groups with added burdens on their ability to access the civil justice system.

Champions for Justice Past Honorees

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Champion for Justice

2020 Amato “Bud” DeLuca and Miriam Weizenbaum
2019 Robert J. McConnell, Esq., Motley Rice, LLC
2018 The Honorable Edward C. Clifton
2017 Stephen M. Prignano, Esq., McIntyre Tate, LLP
2016 The Honorable Judith Colenback Savage
2015 Linn Foster Freedman, Esq., Robinson + Cole

Alumni Public Interest Champion

2020 Weayonnoh Nelson-Davies, Esq. L’07, Community Legal Aid
2019 Diana deGroof, Esq. L’03, Rhode Island Legal Services
2018 Luis Mancheno, Esq. L’13, The Bronx Defenders
2017 Swapna Yeluri, Esq. L’07, Homeless Persons Representation Project
2016 Dena Castricone, Esq. ’98 L’02, Murtha Cullina, LLP
2015 Deborah Gonzalez, Esq. ’04 L’07, Gonzalez Law Offices, Inc.

Community Partner Champion

2020 Rhode Island Office of the Attorney General
2019 Rhode Island Public Defender
2018 Barton Gilman, LLP
2017 Rhode Island Medical-Legal Partnership
2016 Dorcas International Institute of Rhode Island
2015 Committee for Public Counsel Services

Host Committee Members - 2022

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Kimberly R. Ahern, Esq. L'09, Office of the Governor
Natasha A. Buckler, Esq. L'10, RI Dept. of the Attorney General
Diana deGroof, Esq. L'03, Rhode Island Public Defender
Trustee Linn Foster Freedman, Esq., Robinson + Cole LLP
Kara A. Humm, Esq. L'08, Committee for Public Counsel Services
Patrick T. Jones, Esq., Jones Kelleher LLP
Dadriana A. Lepore, Esq. L'10, Coia & Lepore, Ltd.
Zachary M. Mandell, Esq. L'11, Mandell, Boisclair & Mandell, Ltd
Kelly N. Meara, Esq. L'11, RI Legal Services Inc.
Michael J. Moloney, Esq. L'09, Fall River Housing Authority
Valerie Morozov, Esq. L'14, RI Lottery
Adam M. Ramos, Esq. L'06, Hinckley Allen LLP
Joshua Xavier, Esq. L'14, Partridge Snow & Hahn LLP

Sponsorship Opportunities and Benefits - 2022

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We invite you to support the social justice initiatives at RWU Law through a sponsorship of the 8th Annual Champions for Justice!

This special event benefits the Feinstein Center for Pro Bono & Experiential Education, RWU Law Clinics, and the Pro Bono Collaborative at Roger Williams University School of Law. Champions for Justice has become RWU Law’s signature event for the bench and bar, business, and academic communities, and has drawn over 400+ guests each year. We are excited to host this event once again in person which allows members of the academic, legal, and student community to engage with each other.

Join us in celebrating the array of social justice initiatives at RWU Law while showcasing your firm/company, honoring the award recipients, and demonstrating your commitment to RWU Law’s public interest programming and pro bono legal service.

Champions for Justice Dean's Signature Sponsor $20,000

This sponsorship includes recognition as the Dean’s Sponsor during the event, 24 tickets (three tables), preferred seating for three tables, recognition during the event, your logo on the Champions for Justice website, invitations, signage, and event communications.

Champions for Justice Presenting Sponsor $15,000

This sponsorship includes recognition as the Presenting Sponsor during the evening’s event, 16 tickets (two tables) to the event, and your logo on the Champions for Justice website, invitations, signage, and event communications.

Champions for Justice Title Sponsors $12,500

This sponsorship includes recognition during the evening’s event, 8 tickets (one table) to the event, and your logo on the Champions for Justice website, invitations, signage, and event communications.

Champions for Justice Program Sponsors $7,500

These sponsorships support RWU Law students involved in public interest programs throughout the year. This sponsorship includes special recognition during the evening’s event and 8 (one table) tickets to the event.

Reception Sponsor $5,000

Support the reception at the Champions of Justice Event. This sponsorship includes formal recognition during the reception as well as the logo throughout the early event hours. This sponsorship includes 4 event tickets.

Event Sponsorships $2,000

This sponsorship includes special recognition during the evening’s event and 2 tickets to the event.

If you are interested in sponsorship opportunities, please contact Matt Devecchi at or 401-254-3735.

Thank you!



Close Course Type Descriptions

Course Types

We have classified RWU Law classes under the following headers. One of the following course types will be attached to each course which will allow students to narrow down their search while looking for classes.

Core Course

Students in the first and second year are required to take classes covering the following aspects of the law—contracts, torts, property, criminal law, civil procedure, and constitutional law, evidence, and professional responsibility.  Along with these aspects, the core curriculum will develop legal reasoning skills.


After finishing the core curriculum the remaining coursework toward the degree is completed through upper level elective courses.  Students can choose courses that peak their interests or courses that go along with the track they are following.


Seminars are classes where teachers and small groups of students focus on a specific topic and the students complete a substantial research paper.


Inhouse Clinics and Clinical Externships legal education is law school training in which students participate in client representation under the supervision of a practicing attorney or law professor.  RWU Law's Clinical Programs offer unique and effective learning opportunities and the opportunity for practical experience while still in law school.