The Office of
Defense Services

The ODS Blog

ODS Director of Training and Development honored by Partners for Justice

Date Posted: Thursday, December 15th, 2022

Partners for Justice (PFJ), a nationally recognized nonprofit that partners with public defender agencies to transform the criminal legal system, recently awarded Office of Defense Services (ODS) Director of Training and Development, Dawn Williams, with its Legacy Award. Williams received the award for her dedication to collaborative defense and her years of mentoring the next […]

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Office of Defense Services, community partners, assist individuals at second chance fair

Date Posted: Tuesday, July 26th, 2022

Despite the heat, volunteers from the Office of Defense Services and community partners turned out at the William “Hicks” Anderson Community Center in Wilmington to talk with roughly 85 individuals about their opportunities for a second chance. The event on Saturday, July 23rd, was also attended by multiple agencies, employers, and non-profits to provide job […]

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ODS Appellate Division Chief elected to national appellate group

Date Posted: Thursday, April 14th, 2022

This month, Office of Defense Services Appellate Division Chief Nicole Walker was elected to serve as a member of the American Academy of Appellate Lawyers (AAAL). Walker is one of two attorneys in Delaware and one four public defenders nationwide to be elected to the AAAL. “It is an honor to be elected to the […]

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ODS attorneys honored by Delaware State Bar Association

Date Posted: Wednesday, December 8th, 2021

Two of our incredibly talented attorneys, Meryem Dede and Dawn Williams, were recognized this month by the Delaware State Bar Association. Meryem, who is a felony-level attorney in New Castle County, was awarded the 2020 Young Lawyers Distinguished Service Award for her advocacy to end debtors’ prisons. Dawn, who is the ODS’s Director of Training […]

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Kevin O’Connell sworn in as Chief Defender of the Delaware Office of Defense Services

Date Posted: Thursday, June 3rd, 2021

Kevin O’Connell was sworn in as Chief Defender of the Delaware Office of Defense Services on Wednesday, June 2, 2021 at 4:30 p.m. during a small ceremony at the Leonard L. Williams Justice Center in Wilmington. O’Connell was appointed to the position by Governor John Carney and confirmed by the Delaware Senate in May. He […]

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Office of Defense Services named 2020 Top Workplace in Delaware

Date Posted: Friday, September 11th, 2020

For the 10th year in a row, the News Journal recognized the Office of Defense Services as a top workplace in Delaware. The honor is a testament to our commitment to safeguarding our clients’ constitutional rights and ensuring that our clients receive the best possible representation. As in previous years, the Office of Defense Services […]

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Information for new and current clients regarding the coronavirus (COVID-19)

Date Posted: Monday, March 16th, 2020

Operations at the Delaware Courts have changed to prevent the spread of COVID-19 (the coronavirus), but our office is still operational and accepting new clients. Please reach out at the below numbers  if you have been arrested and need a Public Defender. (302) 255-0130 in New Castle County (302) 739-4476 in Kent County (302) 856-5310 […]

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Chief Defender named civil liberty superhero

Date Posted: Wednesday, November 6th, 2019

Delaware’s top public defender was named a civil liberty superhero this month by the ACLU of Delaware. Brendan O’Neill, Chief Defender at the Office of Defense Services, was honored with the 2019 Kandler Award for his career in public defense. He shared the award alongside Charlotte King from the Southern Delaware Alliance for Racial Justice. […]

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Remembering Chief Public Defender Larry Sullivan

Date Posted: Friday, September 13th, 2019

Larry Sullivan’s passing marks a sad day in Delaware. Larry was a giant in the world of indigent defense, both here in Delaware and nationally. He was a fierce advocate for poor people accused of crimes. Over his long tenure as Delaware’s Public Defender, Larry doggedly fought to ensure that every accused person got a […]

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Celebrating Gault by advancing juvenile justice

Date Posted: Monday, May 15th, 2017

The Office of Defense Services, along with House Democrats, introduced a series of juvenile justice reform bills that will help kids touched by the criminal justice system have a chance of leading successful lives. The package’s introduction comes as the legal community celebrates the 50th anniversary of In re: Gault, the landmark U.S. Supreme Court […]

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