National Alliance of Indigent Defense Educators

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NAIDE Statement on Recent Protests

Public Defender educators have the honor and the obligation to develop excellence in representation by criminal defenders, family defenders and other advocates for accused people. We believe unambiguously that black lives matter. Police brutality must end. Our voices must be used to amplify the stories of black and brown people targeted and terrorized by the legal system every day.

The role of trainers is to shape the culture of the community doing this vital work. As trainers, we are committed to diversity and inclusion. To that end, we are dedicated to recruiting, developing, and encouraging people of color to seek roles as training directors, faculty members, and leaders throughout the defender community. We are devoted to creating programs with diverse participants and trainers.

Our training efforts will consistently include education regarding anti-racism, implicit bias, and advocacy designed to dismantle white supremacy throughout the legal system. We commit to examine our own biases and blindspots and create opportunities for others to do the same. We will not stand in silence, exacerbating the profound inequities in the legal system. We will speak; we will train and support our advocates to speak as well with strong, intentional voices in an effort to change a system that has consistently failed communities of color. We cannot continue to ignore the foundations of racism and brutality which continue to plague our nation, but instead face them and declare that enough is enough. Change is long past due. We will no longer be satisfied by the status quo. We are dedicated to providing leadership in making change, not only in this moment, but going forward in establishing sustained and meaningful progress toward equality and humanity.


Upcoming NLADA/NAIDE Anti-Racism Training:

NLADA and the National Alliance of Indigent Defense Educators (NAIDE) will offer a six-week, intensive ANTI-RACISM training. This training is a part of our commitment to advancing racial equity by equipping our community with the tools needed to help you tackle racism and prejudice in the courtroom, in your offices, and in your communities. The sessions will run from September 15th, 2020 through October 22nd, 2020. 

Goal of the Training:

At the conclusion of this intensive 6-week course, participants will have the tools and knowledge necessary to develop anti-racism strategies and action plans in their defender offices at both the individual and institutional levels. Participants will become part of a community of defenders and advocates committed to anti-racist work and to supporting, sustaining, and growing the community over the long-term. You will walk away with new knowledge about anti-racism along with learning tools and resources that you can share with your local office and community. Click here for more information and registgration. 


The National Alliance of Indigent Defense Educators (NAIDE) provides an unparalleled forum for defender trainers and other professionals with similar responsibilities to keep abreast of the latest legal developments, adult learning techniques, and breakthroughs in web-based or other distance-learning technologies. This section encourages mutual support and networking, as well as life-long learning among defenders. NAIDE also helps define and establish training best practices and standards for public defense delivery systems.

NAIDE welcomes all those working in or with the indigent defense system who have some responsibility for training others, either because it is officially part of a job description or is “just the way things are.” Participants range from directors of organization-wide training programs to supervisors or staff developing a one-time training for attorneys, professional staff, or administrative/support staff. 

NAIDE members share information through a listserv and train-the-trainers sessions at NLADA conferences. NAIDE also advises other NLADA sections, such as the American Council of Chief Defenders on best practices in defender training.

NAIDE Leadership and Executive Commmittee

Alison Bloomquist

Michelle Bonner

Shawna Geiger

Lori James-Townes

Melinda Pendergraph

Heather Pinckney

Gina Pruski

Beau Rudder

Travis Stearns


Please contact Defender Legal Services if you have any questions or are interested in becoming a member.