Richard Dyer is a passionate attorney who has practiced law for 29 years in the areas of Criminal Defense, Juvenile/Child Welfare, Family Law, and Commutation and Parole, with special concentrations in addiction and sentencing mitigation. He believes that justice should be administered with passion, integrity, and a deep understanding of its impact on the individual and community. In representing clients, he brings to bear a broad spectrum of personal and professional experience. Rick is an holistic advocate, bringing to the Court a zealous representation and whole-person picture of his clients with tact, strategy, and dignity. Rick is a member of the Federal Bar, the New Hampshire Bar, the Massachusetts Bar Association and the Boston Juvenile Bar Association, as well as a panel member of the pro bono group Suffolk Lawyers for Justice.
“Prevention, intervention and rehabilitation save lives, communities and money. Public safety is synonymous with rehabilitation. We are faced with the silent epidemic of a new age addiction to prescription drugs. We have not even begun to realize the depth and severity of the problem or the means to heal it. We are watching friends and family suffer, communities and the workplace suffer from ignorance and denial. It is easier than one thinks to embrace the present epidemic than stay silent and ignore the problem. We can make change.”
LexisNexis, for the first time ever, published a chapter addressing the important and widespread issue of substance use, abuse and addiction in the courts. Over 80% of all criminal cases involve drugs and or alcohol. We are removing the stigma of addiction and bringing credibility to recovery as a way of life in the courts and throughout the justice system. Topics addressed by the Chapter include Defining Addiction, Understanding Alternative Disposition and Developing a Recovery Management Plan.
Rick’s work on substance abuse and the law has sparked increased interest around the issue and shed light on the relevance of client addiction to the work of lawyers, social workers, judges, and other staff in the criminal justice system. Rick now conducts a course on the subject, based around the LexisNexus book chapter, for legal professionals and law students. More information about the course can be found on the For Professionals page.
Rick has held the position of Youth Commissioner in his home city of Newton, Massachusetts, served as a mentor at the Home for Little Wanderers in Boston, and has spoken at a variety of community organizations, including ROCA in Chelsea, Massachusetts, the Northeastern Family Institute in Vermont, Learn to Cope in Raynham, Massachusetts, the Middlesex County Fatherhood Program, the Massachusetts Department of Youth Services, and at various jails and prisons in Massachusetts. Rick also serves on the Board of Directors of Improbable Players, a touring troupe of young, diverse actors who present a repertoire of plays that spotlight tough social problems as they relate to substance abuse. Additionally, he is a Board Member of the Massachusetts Organization for Addiction Recovery (MOAR), Hope House, and Over My Shoulder, a non-profit devoted to promoting mentor relationships. He has spoken on issues of Juvenile Law as the Featured Speaker at the Boston College School of Law Children’s Rights Group. In 2014, Rick was appointed to the Governors Interagency Council on Substance Abuse and Prevention.
In addition, Rick has participated in numerous individual and family interventions and has served as a mentor, sponsor, and recovery coach for many people struggling with drug and alcohol addiction.