Mary Lisi

If U.S. senators Jack Reed and Sheldon Whitehouse, Democrats both, are searching for a fine candidate for the opening on U.S. District Court in Providence, federal magistrate Patricia Sullivan whould get top consideration.

Sullivan has the legal, academic and community service qualifications necessary for a federal judge. Sources tell Rhode Island Public Radio that she has applied for the post, which is vacant due to the retirement of U.S. District Judge Mary Lisi.

Rhode Island judge Mary Lisi is one of a dozen federal jurists asking the Justice Department to re-think its closure of a women’s prison in Danbury, Connecticut.  The judges are concerned about families having to travel long distances to see women inmates.

The Federal Bureau of Prisons is transitioning its female prison in Danbury, Connecticut to an all-male facility. It’s the only federal women’s prison in the Northeast. It will forcing judges to sentence women inmates to prisons in Philadelphia, West Virginia or Alabama.