We think that our people set us apart. Our culture is warm, familial, and conducive to brainstorming and idea sharing. While we're small enough to have a highly developed concept of teamwork, we're large enough to have won the confidence of major companies.

•   J. Renn Olenn
•   Joseph F. Penza, Jr.
•   Michael J. Colucci
•   Holly Remington Rao
•   Michael T. Prew
•   Martin K. DeMagistris
•   Krista J. Schmitz
•   Jeffrey W. Kasle
•   Connor D. Holliday, Esq.

Whatever your needs, you'll find us fully focused on finding the very best solution to your problem. Olenn & Penza, LLP has received the highest rating by the independent legal rating agency, Martindale-Hubbell. We strive to make every single one of our clients, large or small, feel that they are our only client.

•   Admiralty & Marine
•   Business Transactions & Litigation
•   Construction
•   Insurance
•   Litigation, Arbitration & Mediation
•   Personal Injury
•   Police, Fire & other Labor
•   Probate & Estates
•   Professional Liability
•   Real Estate
Olenn & Penza Founding Partner Joseph F. Penza, Jr.
Joseph F. Penza, Jr.
Founding Partner

Tel:  401-737-3700   •   Fax:  401-737-5499   •   Email


  • University of Rhode Island, B.S
  • Boston University School of Law, J.D
  • Boston University School of Law, M.S.,
  • Admitted to practice
    and experience before

  • All Rhode Island trial courts
  • Rhode Island Supreme Court
  • United States District Court for the
         District of Rhode Island
  • United States First Circuit Court of
  • United States Supreme Court
  • Professional Affiliations

  • Rhode Island Bar Association
  • Rhode Island Trial Lawyers
  • Defense Research Institute
  • Fellow, American College of Trial Lawyers
  • Superior Court Bench Bar Committee
         (1978-1985); Chairman (1985-1987)
  • Federal Court Bench Bar Committee
  • Committee member charged with
         amending the Rhode Island Rules
         of Civil Procedure(1992-1994)
  • One of twenty attorneys serving as a
         mediator in the United States District
         Court's Alternate Dispute Resolution
         Program (1995-Present)
  • Supreme Court Ethics Advisory Panel
         (1995-2000); Chairman 1999-2000
  • Professional Biography

    Joe is a founding partner of Olenn & Penza and one of the most experienced civil trial attorneys in Rhode Island, having conducted well over one hundred jury trials in Rhode Island State and Federal courts. Joe's primary areas of practice include business and commercial litigation, the defense of police officers and municipalities in wrongful death and civil rights cases, and defending attorneys, accountants, and other professionals in malpractice cases. For over 45 years Joe has successfully defended the City of Providence and its police officers against claims involving wrongful death, wrongful arrest, excessive force, and wrongful pursuit.

    In addition to his trial work, Joe regularly represents public safety officers, firefighters, and unions in labor disputes, collective bargaining, and disciplinary matters. He has represented thousands of public sector retirees in connection with their retirement benefits. He also maintains an active corporate practice, advising dozens of small and medium-sized businesses in matters including business formation, asset sales, stock purchases, and other commercial transactions.

    Joe has dedicated a growing portion of his practice to mediation and alternative dispute resolution, serving as a mediator and arbitrator in a wide array of employment, civil rights, and business disputes.

    View Expanded Bio

    Notable Experience and Recognition

    Joe was named one of Rhode Island's Top Ten attorneys for the years 2011 and 2013 as published in Super Lawyers Magazine, and has been named a Super Lawyer in the area of professional liability defense litigation in every year since 2008.

    Over the course of his career, Joe has won defense verdicts or procured dismissals in hundreds of cases, saving his clients tens of millions of dollars in potential damages.

    Joe received the Kent County Bar Association's Attorney of the Year Award in 2004 and the Lawyers' Weekly Attorney of the year award in 2014.

    Joe regularly lectures in the areas of police procedure and conduct, Constitutional rights, and professional liability matters at various professional development forums and police academies.

    OLENN & PENZA, LLP   Attorneys at Law Practicing in RI and MA
    530 Greenwich Avenue     •     Warwick, RI 02886     •     Phone 401-737-3700     •     Fax 401-737-5499     •     Disclaimer     •     Send us an email
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