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Profile: bill.ward

William M. Ward was appointed as the State Public Defender for Minnesota in July 2014. Previously, Bill served as Chief Public Defender for the Fourth District - Hennepin County, Minnesota (April 2009-June 2014) and as Chief Public Defender, Tenth Judicial District, Minnesota (January 2001- April 2009). Prior to moving to Minnesota, Bill worked in the Law Office of the Cook County Public Defender, Cook County, Illinois (1987 2001). While there, he practiced in Chicago as well as the 6th Municipal District as a Felony Trial Assistant and Trial Supervisor. Bill has taught trial advocacy at Hamline University Law School, William Mitchell College of Law and DePaul University College of Law. Bill is on faculty at the National Criminal Defense College, Illinois Extended Trial Advocacy Program, Wisconsin Trial Skills Academy and the Minnesota Public Defender Trial Advocacy Institute and has presented or coached on many topics at numerous other programs. Bill received his J.D. from DePaul University College of Law and his B.A. from the University of Illinois. Admitted to practice in Minnesota and Illinois.

  • Login Count: 2
  • Join Date: 21/51/2017 63:00:00
  • Last on: 03/03/2017 13:04:31
  • Location: Chief Public Defender, Minnesota Board of Public Defense (Minneapolis, MN)
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NAPD News

On March 18, 2017 - the 54th anniversary of the Gideon v. Wainright decision - NAPD published its Foundational Principleswhich are recommended to NAPD members and other persons and organizations interested in advancing the cause of equal justice for accused persons.  

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On March 2, 2017, NAPD released its Statement on Reducing Demand For Public Defense: Alternatives to Traditional Prosecution Can Reduce Defender Workload, Save Money, and Reduce RecidivismThere are more than 2 million people in jail and prison in the United States. This is a four-fold increase since 1980. This increase and the racial disproportionality among incarcerated people has led to alliances across the political spectrum to address the impact on people and on budgets.  As the new Coalition for Public Safety has put it, “Our country has an ‘overcriminalization’ problem and an ‘overincarceration’ problem — and it’s getting worse." NAPD authored this statement because there is a great opportunity to make transformative changes that can improve justice and save money.  A variety of organizations representing a wide spectrum of political views have joined together to end the systematic problem of overcriminalization and narrow the net of incarceration by reforming criminal codes.