Eight prominent Rhode Islanders – five living and three recently deceased – will be induced into the Rhode Island Heritage Hall of Fame May 5 at Rhodes-on-the-Pawtuxet.
The Hall of Fame, now consisting of 681 Rhode Islanders from Roger Williams and the chief sachems of the Narragansett and the Wampanoag tribes to the present, was created in 1965 to honor “any individual who has brought credit to Rhode Island, brought Rhode Island into prominence, and contributed to the history and heritage of the state.” Such individuals must have been born in Rhode Island, lived, studied, or worked in Rhode Island for a significant time, or made his or her reputation here. The Board of Directors of the Rhode Island Heritage Hall of Fame, chaired by Patrick T. Conley, made the selections.
This year’s induction ceremony – the 48th – will open with a social hour at 6 p.m., followed by dinner, entertainment and the induction ceremony.
The donation to the Heritage Hall of Fame for the dinner event is $75. The Rhode Island general public is urged to attend to pay tribute to their distinguished fellow citizens. Tickets must be purchased in advance by May 1 and may be ordered at www.arttixri.com, by calling Somravanh Litthisack at 401-556-6174.
The Inductee Class of 2012 (listed alphabetically) includes:
KAREN L. ADAMS, two-time Emmy-winning news anchor for WPRI-TV12 for 21 years during which time she became a community activist noted for her charitable and philanthropic work on behalf of numerous Rhode Island agencies.
ARAM G. GARABEDIAN, prominent Cranston public official on both the city and state levels known for his courageous stands on critical political issues, an active participant in numerous civic and charitable projects, and the co-managing partner of the Warwick Mall.
RABBI LESLIE Y. GUTTERMAN, distinguished Providence religious leader, senior rabbi at Temple Beth-El since 1974 and a community leader who has served on numerous health care, cultural, educational, governmental, and charitable boards of directors.
*GEORGE S. LIMA JR., a Tuskegee airman during World War II, promoter of integration and racial equality, prominent labor activist, state representative and a leader in the local Cape Verdean community.
*ROYAL LITTLE, entrepreneur, founder of Textron and the modern business “conglomerate,” major donor to the United Way, Rhode Island School of Design and the Junior Achievement Program, and an activist in the protection of wildlife.
*EILEEN GILLESPEE SLOCUM, Newport socialite known as the “Grand Dame” of Newport Society, Republican party leader, and a contributor to Newport’s preservation efforts and its cultural life.
HOWARD G. SUTTON II, influential publisher, president and CEO of the Providence Journal since 1999, known for his philanthropic work with numerous local charitable agencies, especially Crossroads, Rhode Island, the state’s largest homeless shelter. He is past president of the Rhode Island Philharmonic and past chairman of the United Way of Rhode Island.
JOSEPH W. WALSH, former mayor of Warwick and longtime legislator from that city, prominent attorney, a civic leader who has assisted numerous charitable agencies, and, for 20 years, the chairman of the Board of Directors of the Providence Performing Arts Center.