AWARD PRESENTED TO ROCKY
Leonard Weinglass in Defense of Civil Liberties Award
Rocky Anderson has fought tenaciously for civil and human rights as a community activist, formidable lawyer, two-term Mayor of Salt Lake City, a human rights organization director, and 2012 presidential candidate of the Justice Party.
Early in his legal career, Rocky provided successful representation in a class-action strip search case and prevailed against a city unconstitutionally denying Planned Parenthood an occupancy permit.
After a schizophrenic prisoner died of a pulmonary embolism from being strapped naked in a restraint chair for 16 hours, Rocky achieved a favorable settlement and ended the use of the medieval chair at the Utah State Prison.
Rocky was the only major-city mayor who sought the impeachment of George W. Bush for his criminal acts. He was also a leader in the resistance against Reagan Administration human rights outrages in Central America.
As Mayor, Rocky created the most comprehensive restorative justice program in the country, worked toward compassionate immigration reform, and was acknowledged as being among the foremost straight allies of the LGBTQ community.
In recent years, Rocky successfully challenged a wrongful police shooting and he prevailed in a major free speech case against the State of Utah for censoring mainstream movies in businesses serving alcohol. He is challenging a legislative override of a citizens’ initiative for medical cannabis and is immersed in a lawsuit exposing the lack of medical care in a jail for a woman who died from peritonitis.
Rocky lives a life of action, committed to fighting against abuses of privilege, wealth, and power.
The Leonard Weinglass In Defense of Civil Liberties Award is given to an individual—usually, but not necessarily, an attorney—who has made a notable contribution to the defense of civil liberties by bringing, trying, or resolving a suit, or by otherwise protecting or advancing civil liberties, in a way that has had a significant impact n the past year or over the course of his/her career.