Richard Barth Ph.D., Dean
School of Social Work
, University of Maryland, Baltimore
525 W. Redwood St.
Baltimore, MD 21201
Barth's research interests include child abuse and neglect, foster care dynamics, adoption policy, shared family care, program evaluation and linkages between child welfare and juvenile justice services. He's the co-author of several books, including "Evidence for Child Welfare Policy Reform" (2005) and is co-principal investigator of the National Study of Child and Adolescent Well-Being. He has received numerous awards and was a senior Fulbright specialist in Australia in 2006.
Bruce Boyer, Director
Civitas ChildLaw Clinic
, Loyola University
16 E. Pearson St.
Chicago, IL 60611
Boyer directs the clinic, a pediatric law office in which Loyola students learn skills to represent children and advocate for clients. Boyer focuses primarily on child maltreatment issues and has represented clients in a wide range of proceedings, including child welfare, juvenile delinquency, special education and disability hearings. Boyer has litigated, taught, consulted and written extensively in the area of child abuse and neglect. He has been appointed to the new Illinois Supreme Court Commission on Professionalism.
Mark Courtney Ph.D., Executive Director
Partners for Our Children
, University of Washington
4516 University Way
Seattle, WA 98105-6299
In 2007, Courtney became founding executive director of the child welfare research and development center. He also joined the university's School of Social Work as the Ballmer Chair in Child Well-Being. Previously, he had been at the University of Chicago, directing its Chapin Hall Center for Children from 2001 to 2006. He has conducted extensive research on individual, family and societal contributors to the well-being of children placed in out-of-home care. Courtney is widely acknowledged as an expert on the child welfare system. His studies of youth aging out of foster care have been used extensively by legislators, agency administrators and courts around the country.
Bernardine Dohrn, Director
Children & Family Justice Center
, Northwestern University
Law Legal Clinic
375 E. Chicago Ave.
Chicago, IL 60611
Dohrn is the center's founding director and a clinical associate professor of law. She teaches, lectures and writes about children's law and justice as well as the international human rights. Dohrn was a member of the Expert Work Group for the Adoption 2002 Project of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the Domestic Violence Child Abuse Working Group of the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges, and the steering committee of the Illinois Family Violence Coordinating Committee.
Martin Guggenheim, Professor of Clinical Law
School of Law
, New York University
161 Avenue of the Americas, Fourth Floor
New York, NY 10013
An expert in children's rights and family law, Guggenheim has been an active litigator in the area of children and the law and has argued leading cases on juvenile delinquency and termination of parental rights in the Supreme Court of the United States. He has published more than 40 book chapters and articles in leading law reviews in the United States. His research has focused on adolescent abortion, First Amendment rights in schools, the role of counsel for children in court proceedings, empirical research in child welfare practice, juvenile justice and family law. He is the author of five books on children and parents. His most recent book is "What’s Wrong with Children’s Rights" (Harvard University Press, 2005).
Susan Kellam, Senior Communications Adviser
1775 Massachusetts Ave., NW
Washington, DC 20036
Kellam promotes Brookings, a think tank supporting a wide scope of research. Its Center on Children and Families examines policies affecting the well-being of U.S. children and their parents, especially children in less advantaged families. Directed by Ron Haskins and Isabel Sawhill, it co-publishes the twice-yearly journal Future of Children.
Jenice Robinson, Communications Director
Center for Law and Social Policy
1015 15th St. NW, Suite 400
Washington, DC 20005
The national nonprofit conducts research and policy analysis to improve low-income people’s economic security, educational and workforce prospects. Specifically, it aims to: increase adults’ access to quality education, training and transitional jobs; create universal opportunities for early childhood education; improve access to supports such as child care, food stamps, Medicaid and cash assistance; help young people avoid risky behavior; and help more kids grow up with two involved parents.
William Meezan, Dean
College of Social Work
, Ohio State University
305 A Stillman Hall
1947 College Road
Columbus, OH 43210
His research interests include: child welfare policies and services; child abuse and neglect; foster care and adoption; family support and family preservation; and evaluation research. Meezan co-wrote "Gay Marriage, Same-Sex Parenting and America's Children," an article for a 2005 issue of the journal Future of Children.
Ronald Mincy Ph.D., Maurice V. Russell Professor of Social Policy and Social Work Practice
School of Social Work
, Columbia University
1255 Amsterdam Ave.
New York, NY 10027
Mincy teaches and directs the School of Social Work's Center for Research on Fathers, Children and Family Well-being. He studies the effects of welfare, child support, family support, housing, and employment and training policies and practices on family formation and father involvement. Before joining Columbia's faculty in 2001, Mincy was a Ford Foundation senior program officer, working on such issues as improving U.S. social welfare policies for low-income fathers, especially child support, and workforce development policies. He also served on the Clinton Administration's Welfare Reform Task Force. Mincy is a co-principal investigator of the Fragile Families and Child Well-being Survey, and he has been involved in numerous other research grants. He is a member of the MacArthur Network on the Family and the Economy and serves on advisory boards for many organizations, including the African American Healthy Marriage Initiative and the University of Michigan's National Poverty Center.
Mark Testa Ph.D., Director
Children and Family Research Center
School of Social Work
, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
150 N. Wacker, Suite 2120
Chicago, IL 60606
Testa is an associate professor of social work, a child welfare researcher and former research director for the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services. For 30 years, he has provided leadership on research and public engagement to improve the lives of children and families involved in the income assistance and child protection systems. Testa is the architect of several major child welfare innovations in Illinois, including the Home of Relative Reform in 1995 and the federal Subsidized Guardianship Demonstration in 1997. He is leading the evaluations of replications of the Illinois subsidized guardianship demonstration project in the states of Wisconsin and Tennessee.
Wald has had a distinguished career as an academic researcher and teacher. A leading national authority on legal policy toward children, he drafted the American Bar Association’s Standards Related to Child Abuse and Neglect, as well as major federal and state legislation regarding child welfare. Wald served as deputy general counsel for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services during the Clinton Administration, executive director of the San Francisco Department of Human Services, and senior adviser to the president of the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation.
Fred H. Wulczyn, Research Fellow
Chapin Hall Center for Children
, University of Chicago
5 Sheffield Drive
Clifton Park, NY 12065
Wulczyn directs Chapin Hall's Multi-state Foster Care Data Archive, a longitudinal file containing the placement records of nearly 1.25 million foster children from 12 states. He's an expert on service agency administrative data analysis, studying child welfare outcomes and program development, and how states can connect fiscal data to program performance and outcomes. Wulczyn designed the Child Assistance Program, a major social experiment that won the Innovations in Government award from Harvard University and the Ford Foundation. He also developed the nation’s first proposal to change the federal law limiting states' ability to design innovative child welfare programs, which then led to the development of the Title IV-E waiver programs now used by 25 states to undertake system reform in child welfare programs. He continues to develop alternative approaches to financing child welfare programs.
David Carrier, Outreach Director
4301 Connecticut Ave., NW, Suite 350
Washington, DC 20008
The nonprofit, nonpartisan research center studies children at every stage of development. It is a key source of information on a wide range of topics, including early childhood development, foster care and adoption, education, teen sex and pregnancy, and marriage and family. The Child Trends DataBank is a one-stop source for the latest national trends and research on more than 100 key indicators of child and youth well-being. Its recent reports include “Child Care Use by Low-Income Families: Variations Across States.” The nonprofit, nonpartisan organization provides research guidance to improve policies, programs and practices affecting children and their families. Its major research areas include: early childhood and youth development; child welfare; education; health; teen sex and pregnancy; fatherhood and parenting; and marriage and family. It studies children and youth at every stage of development and in every important subgroup (e.g., by race/ethnicity, family income, immigrant status). Its online DataBank provides the latest statistics on more than 100 indicators of well-being.
The institute is an academic center and statewide law firm that advocates for children in the courts, legislature and agencies. Fellmeth joined the USD faculty in 1977, founding its Center for Public Interest Law in 1980 and the institute in 1989. Fellmeth holds the Price Chair in Public Interest Law, teaches about children's rights and consumer law, directs a dependency court clinic representing abused children, and writes the annual California children's budget. Earlier, he was an attorney with the Center for the Study of Responsive Law in Washington, D.C., a deputy district attorney for San Diego County and an assistant U.S. attorney based there. He’s active on the boards of several foundations and associations, including Voices for America’s Children and the National Association of Counsel for Children. He has written at least 14 books, including “Child Rights and Remedies.”
Marvin Ferneau, President
National Foster Parent Association
403 W. Madison, Box 221
Montezuma, IA 50171
NFPA is a nonprofit volunteer organization that strives to support foster parents and to be a strong voice on behalf of all children. It serves foster families and the children and youth in their care through a network of affiliates in U.S. states and territories. Its headquarters are in Gig Harbor, Wash.
The center works to improve foster care and adoption policy and practice by conducting research and policy analysis – and by developing education and training programs. It translates findings to reach policy makers and practitioners whose work affects children and families involved in foster care and adoption. Many of the center's staff members have personal connections to foster care and adoption. The center develops practical responses to the challenges of adoption and foster care, and addresses a broad range of regional, national and international adoption issues.
Joyce Johnson, Communications Director
Child Welfare League of America
2345 Crystal Drive, Suite 250
Arlington, VA 22202
Johnson serves as the press liaison for the CWLA. The association of nearly 800 public and private nonprofit agencies assists more than 3.5 million abused and neglected children and their families each year with a range of services. Its many programs include those on child protection, domestic violence and juvenile justice. It's based in Washington, D.C.
Jack King, Public Affairs Director
National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL)
1150 18th St., NW, Suite 950
Washington, DC 20036
202.872.8600 Ext. 228; firstname.lastname@example.org
The National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL) is made up of criminal defense lawyers, public defenders, active U.S. military defense counsel, law professors and judges committed to preserving fairness within America's criminal justice system. King ia spokesman for NACDL.
Marsha Levick, Legal Director
Juvenile Law Center
The Philadelphia Building, 4th Floor
1315 Walnut St.
Philadelphia, PA 19107
Levick, an advocate for juvenile and women's rights, co-founded the center. She has represented children in delinquency and dependency proceedings and litigated challenges to conditions of confinement in juvenile institutions. She has worked to develop standards for prosecuting juveniles in the adult criminal justice system, and she's developing strategies to address girls' special needs in the juvenile justice and child welfare systems.
Children’s Rights works to promote and protect the rights of abused and neglected children in failing foster care systems, using policy analysis, public education and the power of the courts. Lowry founded Children’s Rights in 1995. Formerly director of the Children's Rights Project of the New York Civil Liberties Union and the American Civil Liberties Union, Lowry pioneered the first body of law to protect children in foster care, bringing increased attention and public scrutiny to systems that were all but ignored.
Patrick McCarthy, Senior Vice President
The Annie E. Casey Foundation
701 St. Paul St.
Baltimore, MD 21202
McCarthy oversees the foundation's work in income security; child welfare; general, reproductive and mental health; substance abuse; juvenile justice; education; and early childhood and youth development.
Mary Mentaberry, Executive Director
National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges
1041 N. Virginia St.
P.O. Box 8970
Reno, NV 89507
Mentaberry, executive director since 2004, has worked for the council since 1969. The membership organization seeks to improve the standards, practices and effectiveness of the juvenile courts and other courts with jurisdiction over families and children. Its research division, the National Center for Juvenile Justice, features profiles of state juvenile justice systems here
Allison Nadelhaft, Public Relations Manager
National Association of Social Workers
750 First St. NE, Suite 700
Washington, DC 20002
NASW is the largest membership organization of professional social workers in the world, with 153,000 members. It works to enhance the professional growth and development of its members, to create and maintain professional standards and to advance sound social policies.
800.628.3233, Ext. 202; email@example.com
CASA promotes the best interests of abused and neglected children who are involved in the juvenile courts. Staff members work with state and local CASA and volunteer guardian ad litem programs to support quality volunteer advocacy to help assure each child a safe, permanent, nurturing home. Piraino has served as CEO since 1994. While practicing law, he represented children as a guardian ad litem and served as a consultant to international social service and child advocacy organizations in Europe and Southeast Asia. Earlier, he worked as a juvenile probation officer and was an associate research scientist for Columbia University's National Center for Children in Poverty.
, Executive Director
Juvenile Law Center
The Philadelphia Building
1315 Walnut St., 4th Floor
Philadelphia, PA 19107
JLC provides legal representation and services to children under the care of child welfare or juvenile justice systems, residential treatment facilities and adult prisons. A co-founder of the center, Schwartz has brought class-action litigation over institutional conditions and probation functions. He was chair of the American Bar Association's Juvenile Justice Committee from 1992 to 1998 and was a member of the MacArthur Foundation Research Network on Adolescent Development and Juvenile Justice.
Linda Spears, Vice President, Corporate Communications and Development
Child Welfare League of America
2345 Crystal Drive, Suite 250
Arlington, VA 22202
Spears has worked on the front lines of child protection and in senior management of child welfare services for more than 25 years. Spears has served as associate vice president for programs, guiding CWLA's research, consultation, training and best practice activities in program areas including foster care, adoption and domestic violence.
Richard Wexler, Executive Director
National Coalition for Child Protection Reform
53 Skyhill Road, Suite 202
Alexandria, VA 22314
The coalition is dedicated to seeking comprehensive change in the child protective system. Its members believe that many children taken from their homes and placed in foster care don't need to be there; that these children could have been safely kept in their own homes. Wexler's interest in the child welfare system grew out of 19 years of work as a reporter for newspapers, public radio and public television.
James Backstrom, County Attorney
Dakota County, Minn.
1560 Highway 55
Hastings, MN 55033
Backstrom has been the Dakota County (Minn.) Attorney since 1987. He previously served as an assistant county attorney for nine years, including five years when he headed the office’s civil division. He is a member of the board of directors of the National District Attorneys Association and served as its vice president from1997 to 2000. Backstrom co-chaired the association’s Juvenile Justice Committee from 1994 to 2001. He is also a past president and board member of the Minnesota County Attorneys Association. In addition to his administrative duties, he has helped prosecute a number of important criminal cases, and in 1998 successfully argued a case before the U.S. Supreme Court. Backstrom has been active in passing legislation aimed at improving Minnesota’s criminal justice system, and his office has established several programs dealing with crime prevention, juvenile crime and victim services. A frequent speaker at legal education forums and author of numerous articles and training materials, Backstrom was named by Minnesota Lawyer as one of the state’s top 12 attorneys in 2002. He earned a bachelor’s degree in economics and political science from the University of Minnesota and a law degree from William Mitchell College of Law in St. Paul.
Orlando Prescott, Presiding Judge
Miami-Dade Juvenile Court
11th Judicial Circuit-State of Florida
3300 NW 27th Ave.
Miami, FL 33142
Prescott was appointed in July 2009 by new Miami-Dade Chief Judge Joel H. Brown.
James Payne, Director, Juvenile Division
Indiana Department of Child Services
2451 N. Keystone Ave.
Indianapolis, IN 46218
317.924.7501, Ext. 502; firstname.lastname@example.org
Payne, a former judge, was responsible for the development of a nationally recognized detention center, case management software for juvenile justice and many award-winning programs. He speaks frequently around the country on issues of delinquency, dependency, case management and juvenile justice practice and policy, and has served on many boards and executive committees developing juvenile court policy both in Indiana and throughout the country.
Kenneth Wolfe, ACF Acting Deputy Director
Administration on Children and Families
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
370 L'Enfant Promenade, SW
Washington, DC 20201
ACF funds state, territory, local and tribal organizations to improve the economic and social well-being of families, children, individuals and communities. It oversees roughly 60 programs involving child welfare and child support, Head Start, child care, family violence, and fatherhood and marriage.