public defense.

How We do It


Gideon’s Promise is a 501 (C) (3) nonprofit public defender advocacy organization that provides training, mentorship and leadership development to improve the quality of legal representation for the clients and communities they serve.


To strengthen public defenders as instruments of change for systemic criminal justice reform.

Our programs and partnerships are uniquely tailored to support and strengthen the efficacy of public defenders as a critical part of systemic criminal justice reform. Public defenders are frontlines advocates for the accused in this country and we are committed to nurturing and developing their skills at every career level to produce fairer outcomes for America’s most vulnerable citizens.

How we strengthen public defenders.

How we transform public defense.

A public defender is a lawyer employed at public expense in a criminal trial or proceeding to represent a defendant who is unable to afford legal assistance. 80% of people accused of crimes in the Unites States rely on a public defender to protect their constitutional rights. Gideon’s Promise trained attorneys are client and community-focused in all stages of the criminal justice process.



Notable and Newsworthy


Coming Soon!

Gideon’s Promise: A Public Defender Movement to Transform Criminal Justice

by Jonathan Rapping
Beacon Press,

Learn More
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How you can help

Criminal justice is this generation’s civil and human rights struggle and public defenders fight every day in courtrooms across this country to protect the nation’s most vulnerable citizens. Your support helps us strengthen public defenders and the communities they serve.

“The greatest civil and human rights abuses of our time continue in the American criminal justice system.”

Jonathan Rapping — President/Founder, Gideon’s Promise
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