Providence, RI – The Rhode Island Association for Justice (formerly the Rhode Island Trial Lawyers Association) honored Supreme Court Justice Gilbert Indeglia and Superior Court Judge Daniel Procaccini on Friday, September 15, 2017 at its 31st Annual Awards ceremony that also included the installation of the association’s new officers.
Attorney Joseph P. Marasco, was sworn in as the 2017-2018 President by Judge Procaccini. Attorney Marasco, co-founder and partner at Marasco & Nesselbush, has dedicated his 25-year career to serving the injured and disabled.
Attorney Ralph R. Liguori was installed as President-Elect and Attorney Richard A. Sinapi was elected the Association’s Secretary and Treasurer.
Judge Procaccini, who was a trial attorney for 24 years before being appointed to the Superior Court in 2001, once served as president of the Rhode Island Association for Justice. He received the organization’s Citizen of the Year Award, presented by RIAJ President Joseph Marasco who hailed the judge for his legal acumen, fairness and compassion. “Judge Procaccini has built a well-deserved reputation as a judge who treats litigants fairly without regard to color, gender or socioeconomic strata,” said Marasco. “Every Rhode Islander that comes before Judge Procaccini can rest assured that they will receive a fair day in court and rulings based on a careful evaluation of the evidence and a comprehensive understanding of the law.”
Supreme Court Justice Gilbert V. Indeglia was presented with the Rhode Island Association for Justice’s Judicial Merit Award. Prior to his appointment to the Supreme Court in 2010, Justice Indeglia served as an Associate Judge for the RI District Court (1989-2000) and the RI Superior Court (2000-2010) after 22 years of private practice.
Judge Procaccini and Justice Indeglia both addressed the audience after receiving their awards and reflected on their years as practicing attorneys and service on the bench. Judge Procaccini recalled the support he received from the Association’s earliest members when he started his law firm in Providence as a young attorney.
Both judges also underscored the critical role of jurors in rendering trial verdicts. Judge Indeglia said working with juries was his favorite part of serving as a trial judge. “In the early stages of a trial, jurors would often be a bit intimidated by the process,” recalled Judge Indeglia. “I would help them understand the proceedings and their role and guide them through the rules governing their deliberations. When those juries came out of the jury room to render a verdict, you could see their confidence and feel the immediate shift of power in the courtroom from the high-powered attorneys to everyday citizens about to decide the fate of a defendant or the outcome of a high stakes lawsuit. It was a beautiful reminder that a jury trial is the bedrock of our justice system.”
The Association also honored its Executive Director, Lisa St. Pierre, by presenting her with the Association’s newly created Dedicated Service Award. The honor celebrates the work of often unsung heroes who advance the cause of justice through outstanding service and a commitment to the RIAJ mission of leveling the legal playing field for injured individuals who often find themselves up against insurance companies and large corporations.
About the Rhode Island Association for Justice
Founded in 1970, the Rhode Island Association for Justice (formerly the Rhode Island Trial Lawyers Association) represents 400 attorneys who are committed to strengthening the civil justice system by protecting citizens’ access to jury trials. In advancing its mission, the RIAJ works to ensure that any person who is injured or the survivors of those killed due to the misconduct or negligence of others can seek full justice in the courtroom.