The way that Ramón Alvarado lived his life was an inspiration to those who knew him, and continues to be even after his passing in 2020. 

Ramón Alvarado spent years working as a criminal defense attorney and established his own private practice in 2008, where more than half of this caseload involved representing indigent clients. Ramón was passionate about indigent defense, determined to provide equal justice for all people. He served as faculty at NCDC, where he was beloved, and he enjoyed inspiring rising public defenders. After more than ten years in private practice, Ramón achieved his long-term dream of becoming a Judge. In January 2019, Ramón was sworn in as Gwinnett County’s first Hispanic judge; he was also the county’s first full-time judge of Korean descent.

“I promise to, when I’m sitting on the bench, use all of my life experiences to make the very best decisions,” Alvarado said.

“Always humble, Ramón worked hard and sought no recognition,” said Gwinnett County Commissioner Ben Ku, who was a friend of Alvarado’s. “At his swearing-in ceremony, he said that he had, ‘done the easy task of walking through the many doors that others opened.’ So, I would argue that he didn’t just walk through doors — he also opened them and created pathways for others who now follow in his footsteps.”

When Ramón Alvarado passed away in 2020, his friend and fellow National Criminal Defense College faculty member Paul Rudof shared with his law partners his love and admiration for Ramón. Touched by the inspiring stories of Ramón’s life and work, Paul’s law partners decided to provide the initial funding of an NCDC scholarship in memory of Ramón. This scholarship is awarded to an Asian or Latinx applicant who submits an outstanding application for the Trial Practice Institute. Paul, his partners, and NCDC ask that all faculty and graduates of the College who had the privilege of knowing Ramón also spread the word about this amazing person to their law partners, colleagues, and friends and ask them to support the Ramón Alvarado Scholarship Fund, which will help NCDC achieve its goal of ensuring that all defenders who wish to attend NCDC programs can do so, regardless of their ability to pay.

Donate to the Ramón Alvarado Memorial Scholarship Fund here.