Inductees in Government & Politics

  1. Miantonomi and Canonicus (Satchems) (1647-)

    Inducted in 1997

    Canonicus and Miantonomi were Sachems of the Narragansett tribe who obtained their dominance through persuasion rather than violence.  They allowed Roger Williams to establish Providence on their tribal lands. Read more >

  2. Margaret F. Ackroyd

    Inducted in 1972

    Margaret Ackroyd was a native Rhode Islander who served in the State Labor Department for thirty years before her retirement. She served as Chief in the Division of Women and Children and Commissioner of minimum wage.  She became known as the "architect of non-discriminatory employment standards for women".


    . Read more >
  3. Senator Nelson W. Aldrich

    Senator Nelson W. Aldrich (1841-1915)

    Inducted in 1972

    Senator Nelson W. Aldrich, 1841-1915, was a native of Foster who conceived and organized the present financial system of the United States. Mr. Aldrich, recognized as one of the greatest authorities on finance, served for thirty years in the U. Read more >

  4. Senator Philip Allen

    Senator Philip Allen (1785-1865)

    Inducted in 2002

     Allen, Philip, 1785-1865

    Senator Philip Allen (1785-1865) of Providence was a merchant, a textile magnate, a reform governor (1851-53), and a one-term United States Senator (1853-1859).   The brother of Zachariah Allen, noted inventor and industrialist, and the uncle of Thomas Wilson Dorr, Allen was also prominent in banking and insurance.
    A graduate of Brown University (Class of 1803), Philip Allen was Rhode Island’s most prominent political figure of the early 1850s. He was chosen governor as a Democrat in the April elections of 1851, 1852, and 1853. Read more >
  5. Chief Justice Samuel Ames (1806-1865)

    Inducted in 2002

     Ames, Samuel, 1806-1865

    Chief Justice Samuel Ames (1806-1865) of Providence served in many public capacities including state legislator, speaker of the house, and quartermaster general of the state militia. His most significant service was as chief justice of the Rhode Island Supreme Court (1856-1865).
    Ames studied at Phillips-Andover Academy and graduated from Brown University in 1823. He read law for two years under the direction of Samuel W. Read more >
  6. Samuel Greene Arnold

    Samuel Greene Arnold (1821-1880)

    Inducted in 2004

    Samuel Greene Arnold (1821-1880) is one of the two foremost historians of colonial Rhode Island.  He was born into a prominent merchant family and was descended from Thomas Arnold, one of Providence’s earliest settlers.  Arnold was educated by private tutors, attended private schools, graduated from Brown University in 1841, and earned a law degree from Harvard in 1845.

    After extensive travels, available to a man of wealth and leisure, Arnold embarked upon the writing of a detailed and scholarly History of the State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations covering the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. Read more >

  7. Charles C. Baldelli

    Charles C. Baldelli (1933-)

    Inducted in 2015

    Charles Celeste Baldelli was born on August 4, 1933 in Woonsocket, Rhode Island.  He and his brother, Dan, were the sons of Alesandro and Marina Baldelli. True to his native city, Charlie lives in the same house in which he was born. After attending public schools in Woonsocket, Charlie served in the army during the Korean War. Read more >

  8. Amos Chafee Barstow

    Amos Chafee Barstow (1813-1892)

    Inducted in 2004

    Mayor Amos Chafee Barstow (1813-1892) was one of the most accomplished and versatile men in the history of Rhode Island.  A Providence native, Barstow made his fortune by the manufacture of stoves.  His firm, the Barstow Stove Company, located at Point and Richmond Streets covered two and one-half acres and employed 200 workers.  Barstow won the Grand Medal of Merit at the 1873 Vienna World’s Fair for the best cooking stoves and ranges. Read more >

  9. John Russell Bartlett

    John Russell Bartlett (1805-1886)

    Inducted in 2004

    Bartlett, John Russell, 1805-1886

    John Russell Bartlett (1805-1886) is generally regarded as Rhode Island’s greatest secretary of state.  Although a Providence native, he was educated in Canada and New York and operated a bookstore in New York City during the late 1830s and 1840s.  Surrounded by books, he turned to writing.  In 1847 Bartlett published The Progress of Ethnology which was followed a year later by his famous Dictionary of Americanisms. Read more >

  10. Lionel Benjamin

    Inducted in 1984

    Lionel Benjamin was second in command of the RI State Police as Major and Executive Officer. Enlisted in 1958, he moved to the detective division in 1965 and four years later, transferred to intelligence, where he was a member of N.E. State Police Crime Intelligence System as a senior officer. Read more >

  11. Thomas Williams Bicknell

    Thomas Williams Bicknell (1834-1925)

    Inducted in 2010



    Bicknell, Thomas Williams, 1834-1925

    Thomas W. Bicknell (1834-1925) of Barrington was one of the two outstanding historians of Rhode Island during the first half of the 20th century (Dr. Charles Carroll was the other). In 1920 he published a three-volume narrative history of the state, supplemented by three biographical volumes. Read more >

  12. Robert J. Black

    Inducted in 1995

    Mr. Black of Providence was widely recognized as the State of Rhode Island’s greatest distance runner of all-time.  He was a two-time National (NCAA) cross-country champion, and was named All-American in several catagories as a runner for the then Rhode Island State College, now URI. He is the only person ever to win four consecutive Intercollegiate cross-country titles. Read more >

  13. Major General George Newman Bliss

    Major General George Newman Bliss (1837-1928)

    Inducted in 2003


    Bliss, George Newman, 1837-1928

    George Newman Bliss was born in Tiverton, Rhode Island on July 22, 1837, the son of James and Sarah (Stafford) Bliss. He attended Brown University, secured a bachelor's degree from Union College, and earned a law degree from Albany Law School in 1861. Enlisting in the Civil War as a private, he rose to the rank of major in the 1st Rhode Island Cavalry serving with valor and resourcefulness in numerous engagements in the Virginia theater of war. At Waynesboro, Virginia on September 18, 1864, he displayed such heroic action as to merit the Congressional Medal of Honor. Read more >

  14. Bradford P. Boss

    Inducted in 1980

    Bradford P. Boss, whose career at A.T. Cross was primarily in sales and marketing, served as Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer of Costa Inc (Formerly Known As A. Read more >

  15. Governor Augustus Osborn Bourn

    Governor Augustus Osborn Bourn (1834-1925)

    Inducted in 2005

    Governor Augustus O. Bourn (1834-1925) was born in Providence in 1834 to a distinguished old-line Rhode Island family whose earliest ancestor Jared Bourn served as a Portsmouth representative to the colonial assembly in 1654-55.  After graduation from Brown University in 1855, Bourn joined his father in the business of manufacturing India-rubber goods.

    In 1864, Bourn founded the National Rubber Company in Bristol which had a workforce of over 1100 within twenty years of its establishment and became, by far, Bristol’s largest industry. Read more >

  16. Senator William Bradford

    Senator William Bradford (1729-1808)

    Inducted in 2007


    Senator William Bradford (1729-1808) was a fifth-generation descendant and namesake of the famous governor of Plymouth Colony. He began his career as a surgeon, but after his arrival in Bristol in the late 1750s, Bradford left medicine and turned to a new profession in the law, and was admitted to the bar in 1767. He established a practice at Bristol. He served the town as state representative and town moderator. Read more >
  17. Edwin C. Brown

    Inducted in 1986

    Mr. Brown was one of the foremost proponants of organized labor in the State.  He was elected Secretary-Treasurer of the RI AFL, and later was a key negotiator in the merger of the AFL with CIO,  He served on the State Board of Education and later the Board of Regents for twenty-eight years, being elected Chairman in 1964.  He served a miriad of causes in Rhode Island and received honary degrees from URI and Bryant, and was honored witht the United Way's National Beirne Award in 1981. Read more >

  18. John Nicholas Brown (1900-1979)

    Inducted in 1975

    John Nicholas Brown, 1900-1979, was a former assistant Secretary of the Navy for Air, senior fellow at Brown University and a director of the Smithsonian Institution. He directed the search and recovery of the works of art stolen by the Nazis for which he was decorated by the French and Belgian governments. Read more >

  19. T. Dawson Brown

    Inducted in 1970

    T. Dawson Brown was former President and Chairman of the Board at the Industrial National Bank. One of the states most active leaders in promoting brotherhood, the betterment of youth, and civic renewal. He served for many years as President of the Narragansett Council of Boy Scouts. Read more >

  20. Tristam Burges

    Tristam Burges (1770-1853)

    Inducted in 2000

     Tristam Burges, in the estimation of his contemporaries, was one of the most able Rhode Island attorneys of his era.  Born in Rochester, Massachusetts in 1770, Burges briefly studied medicine and then enrolled at Brown, where he became valedictorian of the class of 1796.  Changing his focus to law, he was admitted to the bar in 1799 and soon became an accomplished attorney and a leader of the Federalist party.  Burges became a state representative in 1811 and chief justice of the Rhode Island Supreme court for a one-year term in 1815. Read more >

  21. Major General Ambrose Everett Burnside

    Major General Ambrose Everett Burnside (1824-1881)

    Inducted in 2003


    Burnside, Ambrose Everett, 1824-1881

    Ambrose Everett Burnside was born in Liberty, Indiana on May 23, 1824, one of nine children of Irish and Scottish ancestry born to Edghill and Pamela (Brown) Burnside. His father had been a South Carolina slaveholder who moved to Indiana after freeing his slaves. Edghill Burnside became a legislator in his adopted state--a position that enabled him to secure a West Point scholarship for his son Ambrose. After graduation in 1847, young Lieutenant Burnside was assigned to an artillery unit but arrived in Mexico City too late to see actual combat in the short-lived Mexican War. Read more >

  22. James Burrill, Jr.

    James Burrill, Jr. (1772-1820)

    Inducted in 2000

    James Burrill, Jr., a brilliant leader of the early nineteenth-century bar, a noted orator, and a pioneering constitutional reformer, was born in Providence and graduated from Brown University.  After legal clerkships, first in the office of Senator Theodore Foster and then under the tutelage of Congressman David Howell, he became state attorney general in 1797 at the age of twenty-five and served in that elective post until 1813, when he was chosen a member of the Rhode Island House of Representatives.  Within a year he was elevated to the position of Speaker (1814-1816), after which he was made chief justice for a year at a time when such appointments were made by the General Assembly on an annual basis. Read more >

  23. John H. Chafee

    John H. Chafee (1922-1999)

    Inducted in 1971

    John H. Chafee,1922-1999, was a Providence native who entered government service as Secretary of the Navy. Then, in 1963, when he was forty years old, he took office as Governor of Rhode Island. He was one of the youngest men to become Governor in Rhode Island's history. Read more >

  24. Zechariah Chafee Jr.

    Zechariah Chafee Jr. (1885-1957)

    Inducted in 2003

    Zecharian Chafee was born in Providence to a political family descended from Roger Williams. Chafee attended Brown, where he was a fellow. After graduating fron Brown in 1907, he went on to study law at Harvard University. While attending Harvard, he became influenced by the theories of sociological Jurisprudence presented by Roscoe Pound and others at Harvard. Read more >

  25. Allen Chatterton

    Inducted in 1982

    The late Allen Chatterton was a former president of the R.I. Golf Association. He founded the R. Read more >

  26. Dr. John Clarke

    Dr. John Clarke (1609-1676)

    Inducted in 1997


    Clarke, John, 1609-1676

    Dr. Clarke was a physician, Baptist clergyman, and Statesman.  As the Colony’s agent in England he secured a liberal charter for Rhode Island in 1663 from King Charles II.  He became one of Rhode Island’s foremost advocates in the separation of Church and State. Read more >

  27. William Coddington

    William Coddington (1601-1678)

    Inducted in 1997


    Coddington, William, 1601-1678

    Mr. Coddington was the founder of Portsmouth and Newport, and three-time Governor of Rhode Island.  He was a shrewd politician and merchant, and had a large Newport Estate on which he bred livestock.

    William Coddington was born in Boston, Lincolnshire, England. Read more >

  28. Kevin Coleman

    Kevin Coleman (1921-2011)

    Inducted in 2004

    Kevin K. Coleman was born in Woonsocket to Louis and Mary (McDonnell) Coleman. Mr. Coleman devoted his career to serving the needs of Rhode Islanders. Read more >

  29. LeBaron Bradford Colt

    LeBaron Bradford Colt (1846-1924)

    Inducted in 2008

    LeBaron Bradford Colt was born in Dedham, Massachusetts to Christopher and Theodora (DeWolf) Colt.  He and his equally famous brother, Samuel, had very influential forebears. On their maternal side, they were the grandsons of General George DeWolf of Bristol and the grandnephews of U.S. Read more >

  30. Kathleen S. Connell

    Inducted in 2010

    Kathleen Sullivan Connell was born in Newport, Rhode Island, the only daughter of Lawrence and Margaret Sullivan. She attended St. Mary’s School and St. Catherine Academy, graduated magna cum laude from Salve Regina University with a BS in Nursing, and then earned a master’s degree in International Relations from Salve. Read more >

  31. Thomas G. Corcoran

    Thomas G. Corcoran (1900-1981)

    Inducted in 1997

    Thomas Gardiner Corcoran,  formerly of Pawtucket, was a brilliant attorney nicknamed "Tommy the Cork", and a close companion to Oliver Wendell Holmes. He born in Pawtucket and educated at Brown (where he was class valedictorian). He later became one of President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s most trusted advisors, and a high level official for the powerful Reconstruction Finance Corporation. Read more >

  32. Gov. Samuel Cranston

    Gov. Samuel Cranston (1659-1727)

    Inducted in 1998

    Samuel Cranston (1659-1727) was governor of Rhode Island for almost twenty-nine years--1698-1727--a tenure not only longer than any Rhode Island governor but also exceeding the tenure of any other chief executive of an American colony or state.

    Cranston was the son of John Cranston of Scottish ancestry who was also a Rhode Island governor (1678-1680).  His mother Mary Clarke was the daughter of Governor Jeremy Clarke (1648-1649) and the sister of Governor Walter Clarke (1676-1677, 1686, 1696-1698), so Samuel was well-schooled in the art of politics and the beneficiary of his family’s high social standing.  His first wife, Mary Williams Hart, the granddaughter of Roger Williams, bore him seven children. Read more >

  33. George William Curtis

    George William Curtis (1824-1892)

    Inducted in 1973

    George W. Curtis, 1824-1892, was an essayist and lecturer who became editor of Harper's Magazine.  A co-founder of the Republican Party, he led the movement for civic service reform. Read more >

  34. Congressman Thomas Davis (1806-1895)

    Inducted in 2003


    Davis, Thomas, 1806-1895

    Thomas Davis was born in Dublin, Ireland on December 18, 1806, attended private schools in Ireland, and migrated to America in 1817, settling in Providence. Davis became a pioneer in Rhode Island's jewelry industry and amassed sufficient wealth to enable him to finance a variety of political, civic, and reform endeavors.

    Davis became a state senator from Providence serving from 1845 to 1853 when he was elected to Congress as a Democrat. Locally he was associated with the reform wing of the Democratic party led by Thomas Wilson Dorr. Read more >

  35. Gov. Christopher Del Sesto (1907-1973)

    Inducted in 2011


    Christopher Del Sesto was a loyal and dedicated public servant throughout his adult life.  Born in Providence on March 10, 1907 to Eraclio and Rosa (Geremia) Del Sesto, he graduated with honors from Providence’s Commercial High School and with cum laude honors from both Boston University and Georgetown University Law School. For many years he was the only lawyer who was also a certified public accountant.
    He began his public service as chief accountant to the Rhode Island General Treasurer in the early 1930s, and by 1935 he had helped to design a plan that reorganized state government in a transformation that has been called “The Bloodless Revolution. Read more >
  36. Judge Luigi DePasquale (1892-1958)

    Inducted in 2015

    Judge Luigi DePasquale 1892-1958, exemplifies the rapid political, social, and economic rise of Rhode Island's first generation Italian-Americans. Born on December 13, 1892 in Providence to Italian immigrant parents, Antonio and Maria (Vitale) DePasquale, Luigi was raised in Milford, Massachusetts, where his father became an undertaker. He graduated from Boston University Law School in 1913 at the age of twenty. In 1914, Luigi returned to his native state to practice law. Read more >

  37. Gregory Dexter

    Gregory Dexter (1610-1700)

    Inducted in 1997

    Gregory Dexter, born in Olney, Buckinghamshire, England, was admitted to the highly competitive and highly prized company of stationers in London in 1639. There is little known about his early life, but his professional success indicates he received a sound education. Dexter became a printer to the famous English writer John Milton, and he also became the printer for Roger Williams.  Among the works of Williams published by Dexter was A Key into the Language of America. Read more >

  38. Alexander DiMartino (1907-2001)

    Inducted in 1979

    Alexander Dimartino, 1907-2001, served as Chairman of the Rhode Island Water Resources Board and President of the Narragansett Preservation and Improvement Association. He was responsible for the construction of many bridges over Route 95 and for the Washington Bridge. He actively engaged in Brown University alumni activities for many years, and was a native of Toulon, France. Read more >

  39. Thomas W. Dorr

    Thomas W. Dorr (1806-1854)

    Inducted in 1973

    Thomas Wilson Dorr, 1806-1854, was known as Rhode Island's greatest political and constitional reformer, and the principle draftsman of the People's Constitution in 1841. He became Governor of Rhode Island in 1842 on the People's Party ticket, and was the leader of the famous Dorr Rebellion. Read more >

  40. Eddie Dowling (1889-1976)

    Inducted in 1966

    Eddie Dowling, 1889-1976, was born in Woonsocket as Joseph Nelson Goucher. As the fourteenth of seventeen children, he used his Irish mother Bridgette's maiden name of Dowling during a brilliant Broadway career as actor, composer, producer and Pulitizer Prize-winning playwright. Dowling's work helped to bring the American stage to a new level of aesthetic maturity and international renown. Dowling sought the 1934 Democratic nomination for the United States Senate seat from Rhode Island. Read more >

  41. Silas Downer

    Silas Downer (1729-1785)

    Inducted in 1998

    Silas Downer, patriot and lawyer, was born in Norwich, Connecticut to a farm family that subsequently moved to Sunderland Massachusetts, near Deerfield, where Downer got his early schooling.  He entered Harvard College at age fourteen and earned an undergraduate degree and a master of arts by age twenty-one.  After graduation in 1750, Downer came to Rhode Island to apply his remarkable talent in calligraphy as a scrivener, or professional penman, copyist, letter-writer, and public notary.  As one of the very few highly educated men in the colony at that time, he soon entered into the practice of law. Read more >

  42. Mayor Thomas A. Doyle

    Mayor Thomas A. Doyle (1827-1886)

    Inducted in 2004


    Doyle, Thomas Arthur, 1827-1886

    Mayor Thomas A. Doyle, an independent-minded Republican of Irish Protestant stock, is regarded by historians as Providence’s greatest mayor.  He was born in Providence as one of seven children, including a sister, Sarah, who became a noted educator and advocate for women’s rights.

    After attending public school, Doyle gained employment as a clerk for several companies and then became a stockbroker and real estate auctioneer. Read more >

  43. Governors Elisha & Elisha Jr. Dyer

    Governors Elisha & Elisha Jr. Dyer

    Inducted in 2007

    Dyer, Elisha, 1811-1890 

    Governor Elisha Dyer (1811-1890) and Governor Elisher Dyer, Jr. (1839-1909) traced their illustrious ancestry to William and Mary Dyer of Boston who settled Portsmouth in 1638 as exiled disciples of Anne Hutchinson. They eventually embraced Quakerism, and Mary repeatedly returned to Boston to preach the new doctrine in defiance of the Puritan magistrates. Such persistence earned her martyrdom. Read more >

  44. William Ellery

    William Ellery (1727-1820)

    Inducted in 1999

    A merchant, politician, and signer of the Declaration of Independence, William Ellery was the son of William Ellery, a prominent merchant, and Elizabeth Almy. His well-to-do father sent him to Harvard from which young William graduated in 1747. He then embarked upon a mercantile career, but when his father's death in 1764 left him with a considerable inheritance, Ellery began to engage actively in politics as an ally of Governor Samuel Ward. He was an early supporter of the protest movement against England and joined the Newport Sons of Liberty in the mid-1760s. Read more >

  45. Susan L. Farmer

    Inducted in 2010

    Susan L. Farmer joins her forebears, Bishop Alexander Griswold and Anne Hutchinson as an inductee into the Rhode Island Heritage Hall of Fame. Like Hutchinson, a pioneer in many areas, including the advancement of women, Susan was a “first” as well. When elected Secretary of State in 1982, she became the first woman elected in Rhode Island to a statewide office. Read more >

  46. Raymond F. Farrell

    Inducted in 1970

    Raymond Farrell was Commissioner of United States Immigration and Naturalization for ten years. Born in Pawtucket, he served in the federal government for more than thirty-two years. Read more >

  47. Mayor John J. Fitzgerald (1871-1926)

    Inducted in 2008


    Fitzgerald, John J., 1871-1926

    John J. Fitzgerald was born in Pawtucket where he attended local public schools.  A brilliant student, he was one of the state’s first Irish-Catholics to graduate from Brown University (Class of 1893). Read more >

  48. Governor William S. Flynn

    Governor William S. Flynn (1885-1966)

    Inducted in 2014

    Gov. William S. Flynn, (1885-1966) was a member of the Rhode Island State Senate from 1912 - 1914 and again from 1917 - 1922. He was Governor of Rhode Island from 1923 to 1925, and brother of Chief Justice Edmund Flynn and Coach John A. Read more >

  49. Chief Justice Edmund W. Flynn

    Chief Justice Edmund W. Flynn (1890-1957)

    Inducted in 2014

    Chief Justice Edmund W. Flynn, 1890-1957, Rhode Island’s longest-serving chief justice, graduate of Georgetown Law School, state representative from South Providence, legal scholar, architect of the “Bloodless Revolution,” and a draftsman of the two most recent digests of Rhode Island’s general laws (1938 and 1956).

    After graduation from Holy Cross College and Georgetown Law School, he served five years as a Democratic state representative from South Providence. Flynn was elevated to the position of chief justice of the Rhode Island Supreme Court on January 1, 1935, as part of the "Bloodless Revolution. Read more >

  50. Congressman John E. Fogarty

    Congressman John E. Fogarty (1913-1967)

    Inducted in 1967

    Congressman John E. Fogarty, 1913-1967, was one of Rhode Island's longest serving congressmen. He was elected to the U.S. Read more >

  51. Congressman Aimé Joseph Forand

    Congressman Aimé Joseph Forand (1895-1972)

    Inducted in 1970

    Aimé Forand served in Washington for twenty-two years as a Congressman from Rhode Island. Through his diligent and persistent efforts to secure medical aide for the aged, he earned the title "Father of Medicare."

    . Read more >
  52. Theodore Foster

    Theodore Foster (1752-1828)

    Inducted in 2000


    Foster, Theodore, 1752-1828

    Theodore Foster was born in Brookfield, Massachusetts in 1752, the son of Jedediah Foster, a judge of the Superior Court, and Dorothy Dwight of Dedham a descendant of William Pyncheon, an original incorporator of the Massachusetts Bay Company.  As a young man Foster came to Providence to study at Rhode Island College (now Brown University) and graduated in 1770.  In 1771 the socially-prominent youth married equally prominent Lydia Fenner, sister of Arthur Fenner, Jr., afterwards governor of Rhode Island. Read more >

  53. Mayor Joseph Henry Gainer

    Mayor Joseph Henry Gainer (1878-1945)

    Inducted in 2014

    Mayor Joseph Henry Gainer, 1878-1945, attorney, city councilman, alderman, and Providence mayor from 1913 to 1927, presided over development of city’s outer harbor, creation of its water supply, and other projects.

    Joseph Henry Gainer was born in Providence, January 18, 1878, the son of John and Margaret (Keogh) Gainer, immigrants from Ireland. One of the only surviving chjldren in the family, Joseph was at LaSalle Academy, and Holy Cross College. Immediately following his graduation from Catholic University law school, Mr. Read more >

  54. Edward P. Gallogly (1919-1995)

    Inducted in 1994

    Mr. Gallogly was a former Officer in the U.S. Navy, a State Senator, Lieutenent Governor, United States Attorney, and Chief Judge of the Rhode Island Family Court. Read more >

  55. Gov. J. Joseph Garrahy (1930-2012)

    Inducted in 1989


    Garrahy, John Joseph, 1930-2012

    Governor Garrahy  known as"Joe" or "the people's governor" was  native Rhode Islander, the child of two Irish immigrants, who served four terms as Governor from 1977-85. He is best known for leading the state as governor during the Blizzard of 1978.

    He graduated from La Salle Academy in Providence and attended the University of Buffalo and the University of Rhode Island. - See more at: http://www. Read more >
  56. Governor Lucius F. C. Garvin, M.D.

    Governor Lucius F. C. Garvin, M.D. (1841-1922)

    Inducted in 2008


    Garvin, Lucius F. C. (Lucius Fayette Clark), 1841-1922

    Lucius Fayette Clark Garvin’s life was one of compassion, political struggle, tragedy and service to all.  Born in Knoxville, Tennessee on November 21, 1841 to educated parents, his father, James, died when Lucius was only four and his mother, Sarah, a school teacher moved to Greensboro, North Carolina where she remarried and bore two more children. Read more >

  57. Colonel Robert Hale Ives Goddard

    Colonel Robert Hale Ives Goddard (1837-1916)

    Inducted in 2009


    Goddard, Robert H. I. (Robert Hale Ives), 1837-1916

    Colonel Robert Goddard (1837-1916) was a son of Professor William G. Goddard, newspaperman and first Chancellor of Brown University, and Charlotte Rhoda Ives Goddard. Read more >

  58. Major John T. Godfrey

    Major John T. Godfrey (1922-1958)

    Inducted in 1993


    Godfrey, John Trevor, 1922-1958

    Major Godfrey, a Candian native raised in Woonsocket, was a highly decorated and widely recognized World War II flying ace credited with shooting down or destroying on the ground, 36 German planes.  He later became prominent in public affairs as a State Senator.  He also operated a successful Lace manufacturing business in Rhode Island.  He died in 1958 of Lou Gehrig’s Disease after moving his business and family to the state of Maine. Read more >

  59. Jabez Gorham (1792-1869)

    Inducted in 1966

    Gorham, Jabez, 1792-1869

    After an apprenticeship to Nehemiah Dodge, Gorham became the foremost Rhode Island producer of jewelry and silverware. While in his twenties, Gorham established a shop at North Main and Steeple Streets, the first of several buildings that formed his original factory complex. By the end of the century, the company he founded was a world leader in the production of silverware.

    Jabez Gorham's came from a long line of illustrious New Englanders. Read more >

  60. Samuel Gorton

    Samuel Gorton (1592-1677)

    Inducted in 1973

    Samuel Gorton, 1592-1677,  was a colonial leader who was the first settler of Warwick, RI.  He inspired the development of a religious sect called the Gortonists. 

    Photograph of Samuel Gorton grave medalion, Gorton Cemetery, Warwick, Rhode Island.Sarnold17 Wikipedia. Read more >

  61. Senator Theodore Francis Green

    Senator Theodore Francis Green (1867-1966)

    Inducted in 1971

    Senator Theodore Francis Green, 1867-1966,  governed Rhode Island from 1933 to 1937. He then served the state in Washington D.C. as Senator for twenty-four years, 1937-1961. Read more >

  62. George Washington Greene

    George Washington Greene (1811-1883)

    Inducted in 2004


    Greene, George Washington, 1811-1883

    George Washington Greene, prominent educator and author, was born in East Greenwich and was the grandson of Nathanael Greene, the great Revolutionary War general.

    As a young man, Greene traveled extensively in Europe gaining proficiency in the Italian and French languages. His first wife was Italian and he served as U.S. Read more >

  63. Lloyd T. Griffin, Jr. (1940-1999)

    Inducted in 2006


    Griffin, Lloyd T., 1940-1999

    Lloyd Griffin died on November 24, 1999, at the age of fifty nine. His memorial Mass on December 1 at Holy Rosary Church in his native Fox Point was well attended for an ordinary man; but Lloyd was not an ordinary man, and the church was far from over flowing. A few black community leaders were present- notably Cliff Montiero, Mike Van Leesten, and John Rollins--but white politicians were few. Read more >

  64. John Milton Hay

    John Milton Hay (1838-1905)

    Inducted in 2008


    Hay, John, 1838-1905

    John Milton Hay was an Illinois native with deep Rhode Island roots that prompted him to select Brown as his college. Providence was the early home of his mother, Helen Leonard, whose father, Rev. David Leonard was in the Brown Class of 1792. At Brown, Hay was described as having “a retentive memory, a vivid imagination, and an ability to get along with the ladies. Read more >

  65. Jonathan Hazard

    Jonathan Hazard (1744-1825)

    Inducted in 1999


    Hazard, Jonathan, 1744-1825

    Jonathan Hazard, of Charlestown, was a small farmer who also worked as an itinerant tailor. He became passionately involved in the movement for independence and served as a state legislator almost continuously after 1776. During the mid-1780s, when a post-war depression and the taxing policies of the merchant-controlled state government caused hardship in the rural, agricultural areas of Rhode Island, Hazard emerged as the legislative champion of Rhode Island's agrarian debtors.

    In 1785, he gathered about him a forceful group of rural politicians to form a protest group which was styled the Country Party. Read more >

  66. Edward V. Healey, Jr. (1923-2011)

    Inducted in 1989

    Mr. Healey, of Cranston, RI, was a Senior Associate Justice of the Rhode Island Family Court and an internationally recognized authority on juvenile justice and delinquency prevention.  He served on several advisory commissions for Presidents of the United States, and is a prominant jurist, professor, and consultant to variuos nations and states.

    Judge Healey was born in an Irish-American neighborhood South Providence, the first child of the late Edward V. Read more >

  67. Edward J. "Rip" Higgins (1894-1979)

    Inducted in 1994

    Higgins, Edward J., 1894-1979

    Edward “Rip” Higgins was born November 16, 1894 to Irish immigrant parents in Warren. During WW I, Rip served in the U.S. Read more >
  68. Governor James H. Higgins

    Governor James H. Higgins (1876-1927)

    Inducted in 2010

     Higgins, James H. (James Henry), 1876-1927

    James H. Higgins was the first Irish-Catholic governor of Rhode Island, serving from 1907 to 1909. Although orphaned at a young age, Higgins pursued a high school degree in Pawtucket and was accepted at Brown University in 1894 at a time when few Irish-Catholics matriculated at the Ivy League institution. Read more >

  69. Stephen Hopkins

    Stephen Hopkins (1707-1785)

    Inducted in 1973

    Stephen Hopkins, 1707-1785, was Governor of Rhode Island for ten years and a signer of the Declaration of Independence.  Historians rate him as "one of the most illustriuos citizens Rhode Island has ever produced.

    Stephen Hopkins.John Hagen, 1999, Brown University Portrait Collection. Read more >

  70. Major General Morphis Albert Jamiel

    Major General Morphis Albert Jamiel (1922-2013)

    Inducted in 2014

    Major General Morphis Albert Jamiel, 1922-2013, truly exemplified the very best of America. Born into the well-known Jamiel family of Warren in 1922, his parents were the late Albert and Mary Jamiel. He had twelve brothers and sisters. From this humble origin in the small town of Warren, he eventually carved out a notable career as a well-respected attorney, public servant, and soldier. Read more >

  71. Congressman Thomas Allen Jenckes

    Congressman Thomas Allen Jenckes (1818-1875)

    Inducted in 2004

    Jenckes, Thomas A. (Thomas Allen), 1818-1875

    Congressman Thomas Allen Jenckes (1818-1875) is regarded nationally as “the father of civil service reform.”  He was born in Cumberland, was educated in the public schools of that town, and graduated from Brown University in 1838 where he distinguished himself in mathematics and the physical sciences.

    Jenckes studied law under Samuel Y. Read more >

  72. Alfred Hahn Joslin (1914-1991)

    Inducted in 1981

    Alfred Hahn Joslin, 1914-1977, was Associate Justice of the Rhode Island Supreme Court, and past Chairman of the Executive Committee of the American Bar Association for Rhode Island. He became Trustee, Vice Chancellor, and fellow of the Brown Corporation. He wrote more than 600 opinions and served as the chair of Capital Center Commission (1980-1991). Read more >

  73. Leona McElroy Kelly (1919-2000)

    Inducted in 2002

    Former Rhode Island Representative from South Kingstown.

    Leona A. Kelley was born in Providence on August 15, 1919. She attended Classical High School and the University of Rhode Island graduating with a Bachelor of Science Degree in 1941. Read more >

  74. U.S. Rep. Ambrose Kennedy

    U.S. Rep. Ambrose Kennedy (1875-1967)

    Inducted in 2015

    U.S. Rep. Ambrose Kennedy, 1875-1967, Congressman Ambrose Kennedy was a rarity in early twentieth century Rhode Island politics--a devout Irish Catholic Republican politician of high standing. Read more >

  75. Frances G. Knight (1905-1999)

    Inducted in 1978

    Frances Knight, 1905-1999, was a Newport native who was Director of Passport Service. An independent who ran her own show through many presidential administrations, Frances transformed an inefficient federal agency into a model of efficiency. Read more >

  76. Victoria S. Lederberg

    Victoria S. Lederberg (1937-2002)

    Inducted in 2003

    Lederberg, Victoria, -- 1937-

    Lederberg was a psychology professor and state legislator before becoming a state Supreme Court judge in 1993.

    Lederberg earned her bachelors and masters at doctoral degrees Brown University. She served as Providence Municipal Court judge and was professor of psychology at Rhode Island College. She served as state representative from 1975-1983 ,representing the East Side of Providence, and state senator from 1985-1991. Read more >

  77. Frank Licht (1916-1987)

    Inducted in 1996

    Isabelle Florence Ahearn O’Neill, 1880-1975, stage and silent-film actress and suffragette. She was the state’s first female legislator, elected to the House in 1922. She also served as deputy Democratic floor leader in the Senate.

Search Inductees
Browse through our collection of 600+ amazing Rhode Islanders:

Search by Name or Keyword:

Area of Accomplishment:

African Americans | Agriculture / Farming | Architects & Designers | Artists & Painters | Banking / Finance | Business / Entrepreneurs | Civic Leaders | Civil Engineer | Civil Rights / Abolitionists | Craftsmen | Criminals / Rogues | Dance | Econonomics / Theory | Education & Universities | Entertainment Development | Explorers & Adventurers | Famous RI Families | Food / Culinary | Founders of Rhode Island | Government & Politics | Historians/Historical Accounts, Preservation | Immigrants: Chinese | Immigrants: Irish | Immigrants: Portuguese | Industry - General | Industry - Jewelry | Industry - Maritime | Industry - Textiles | Inventors & Inventions | Labor / Unions | Law / Legal Pioneers | Literature / Writers / Newspapers | Medicine & Health Care | Military | Music (Singers, Composers) | Native Americans | Olympic Athletes | Philanthropists | Religion & Churches | Retail Pioneers | Sports - Baseball | Sports - Basketball | Sports - Football | Sports - Golf | Sports - Hockey | Sports - Other | Technology & Science | Theater | TV & Radio | Women |

Browse Years of Induction: