Wednesday, September 13, 2017 was “A Night to Celebrate” for Gideon’s Promise. Our friends, colleagues and supporters from New York City and the DMV area joined us for a 10-year anniversary celebration. On this evening we had the pleasure of honoring two outstanding attorneys who, like Gideon’s Promise, defend the promise of equal justice. Gideon’s Promise’s executive director, Ilham Askia, proudly presented the Champion of the Community Award to, David Patton, the former executive director of the Federal Defenders of New York and a senior faculty member of Gideon’s Promise. The Equalizer Award was presented to Alex Spiro, criminal defense attorney at Brafman and Associates. As a close friend of Gideon’s Promise and our movement, Alex Spiro advocates the cause of indigent defense because as he stated in his acceptance speech, “poverty should not prevent a person from receiving equal justice”.
Mark Rochon and Gary Kohlman, co-chairmen of Gideon's Promise, served as the evening’s MCs and Jonathan Rapping, president of Gideon’s Promise gave the closing remarks. The evening was highlighted by celebrities, athletes, and community leaders in criminal justice reform. Lisa Fischer was a “Breath of Heaven” as she was accompanied by guitarist J.C. Maillord. They wowed the star-studded crowd with a beautiful performance. Energy of the event was one that sent chills to your soul during the heart-felt speeches, goosebumps to your arms during the musical performances, and action to your mind by the end of the event. This evening cannot be captured by this summary…you simply had to be there.
Thank you to all of the attendees, venue staff, Gideon’s Promise’s volunteers, staff, and the event’s steering committee for making this evening magical. Without you, this could not have been done.
Special appreciation to our Defenders of the Promise sponsors, including: