NAACP breakfast to feature Mass. prosecutor


Correction: A previous version of this article incorrectly identified Mildred Nichols.

PROVIDENCE — The Providence Branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People is inviting Rhode Islanders to celebrate history and civil rights during the organization’s 106th annual Freedom Fund Breakfast on Saturday morning.

“There is no shortage of civil-rights issues in Rhode Island,” branch president Jim Vincent said Thursday. “The NAACP is fully aware that any civil-rights issue must be solved as a community. So we are inviting the community to join us.”

The event — set to begin at 8:30 a.m. at the Providence Marriott Downtown on Orms Street — will feature Suffolk County District Attorney Rachael Rollins as keynote speaker.

Rollins entered office in January and has focused on reducing prosecutions of nonviolent crime, ending of cash bail for low-income defendants, requesting prosecutors to notify her office when Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents are present at proceedings, and recommending rehab instead of bail in drug cases. Those pursuits have put her at odds with the administration of Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker.

“She is gaining quite the national reputation as a reformer,” Vincent said. “She is going to be talking about a different way of looking at criminal justice.”

The master of ceremonies will be Deborah Johnson, Rollins’ Northeastern University Law School classmate and the outgoing director of diversity and outreach at Roger Williams University Law School.

Entertainment will be provided by gospel trio 313, and the NAACP will also be presenting a lifetime membership plaque to Mildred Nichols.

In addition, the organization will present a check to Helen Baskerville Dukes to put on a Juneteenth celebration in Roger Williams Park on June 23.

Juneteenth marks the abolition of slavery in Texas on June 19, 1865 — the end of legalized slavery in the United States.

For Vincent though, it’s about continuing the work of the NAACP.

“There are a lot of issues in our community.”

Tickets can be purchased for $35 at or for $40 at the door.



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