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Annual Events

Judicial and Bar Conference Seminar Programs

2019 Judicial & Bar Conference

2019 Judicial and Bar Conference

Children and the Law: Protecting the Future


Friday, April 12, 2019 
8 a.m. – 8 p.m. 
Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center 
1300 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC  20004

Overview   Conference Itinerary • Seminar Programs  Free Membership Forum

 Plenary Program  Keynote Luncheon • Free Judicial Reception


 

2:15 - 4:00 p.m.


Educational Equity in the District: Positive Alternatives to Disciplinary Exclusion

Sponsored by the Juvenile Justice Initiative; cosponsored by the Children’s Law Center, the D.C. Bar Courts, Lawyers and the Administration of Justice Community, and the D.C. Bar Family Law Community

During the 2016-17 school year, District schools issued nearly 13,000 suspensions to over 7,000 students.  To reduce the District's over-reliance on disciplinary exclusion, the D.C. Council recently passed the Student Fair Access to School Act (SFASA).  This session will provide an overview of the District’s use of exclusion, positive alternatives, and the SFASA’s provisions.

  • Eduardo R. Ferrer, Legal & Policy Director, D.C. Lawyers for Youth and Visiting Professor of Law, Georgetown University Law Center, moderator
  • Faith Gibson Hubbard, MPA, Chief Student Advocate for the District of Columbia, Office of the Student Advocate, speaker
  • Michael Villafranca, Policy Analyst, Children's Law Center, speaker

Child Welfare: Striking the Balance Between the Best Interests of the Child and the Parents’ Rights

Sponsored by the Office of the Attorney General for the District of Columbia; cosponsored by the Children’s Law Center, the D.C. Bar Courts, Lawyers and the Administration of  Justice Community, and the D.C. Bar Family Law Community
This session will examine the legal issues faced at every phase of a child abuse and neglect case.  Specific attention will be given to decisions that require an evidentiary hearing and the prevailing case law that must be considered.  Panelists will focus on the intersection of parents' rights and the best interests of the child.
  • Honorable Tanya M. Jones Bosier, Magistrate Judge, Superior Court of the District of Columbia, moderator
  • Melissa Colangelo, Appellate Project Manger, Children's Law Center, speaker
  • Murphy B. Henry, Parents' Attorney, Counsel for Child Abuse and Neglect, speaker
  • Charmetra L. Parker, Section Chief, Family Services Division, Office of the Attorney General for the District of Columbia, speaker
  • Jessica Kurtz Zagoren, Training Supervising Attorney, Guardian ad Litem Program, Children’s Law Center, speaker


A Courtroom Advocate's Guide to the Family First Prevention Services Act

This session will demystify the landmark federal Family First Legislation, include a discussion of its strengths and shortcomings, emphasize its import for systemic change, and offer innovative advocacy opportunities to translate the law into lived experience for children, parents, and caregivers in the child welfare system.

  • Allison Green, Special Counsel, National Association of Counsel for Children, presenter
  • Stefanie Sprow, Deputy Director, Child Welfare and Mental Health, Children's Defense Fund, presenter


The Psychological Toll of Racism on Youth in the Age of Social Media

Sponsored by the Children’s Law Center; cosponsored by the D.C. Bar Courts, Lawyers and the Administration of Justice Community, and the D.C. Bar Family Law Community

Race-based traumatic stress is the cumulative psychological impact of racism and microaggressions on the well-being of people of color.  In this session, participants will learn how to identify race-based traumatic stress; think critically about youth experiences of racism on social media and in the community; and adjust their interactions and advocacy accordingly.

  • Aubrey Edwards-Luce, Senior Policy Attorney, Children's Law Center, presenter
  • Charles Ross, Staff Attorney, Guardian ad Litem Program, Children's Law Center, presenter
  • Naïké Savain, Senior Attorney, Guardian ad Litem Program, Children's Law Center, presenter
  • Lucy Sgroi, MSW, LGSW, Social Worker, Guardian ad Litem Program, Children's Law Center, presenter


Artificial Intelligence & Machine Learning: The Future Computed

Sponsored by Finnegan, Henderson, Farabow, Garrett & Dunner, LLP

Artificial intelligence is transforming society and the way we interact, yet, legal policies and regulations are not even close to catching up with current technology.  This panel of experts will help the audience understand the benefits and risks of using artificial intelligence, as well as the legal and ethical implications that may arise, such safety issues, liability, data privacy, security, transparency, bias, ethics, and intellectual property. 

  • Sean Damon, Associate, Quinn Emanuel, moderator
  • Izu Emeagwali, Vice President and Assistant General Counsel, J.P. Morgan, speaker
  • Rashida MacMurray-Abdullah, Sr. Manager, Risk and Financial Advisory, Deloitte, speaker
  • Casiya Thaniel, Counsel, U.S. Regulated Industries, Microsoft, speaker


Who is a Parent? Who is a Child? How, When, and Why Does the Law Make These Decisions?

Sponsored by Delaney McKinney LLP; cosponsored by the D.C. Bar Courts, Lawyers and the Administration of Justice Community, the D.C. Bar Family Law Community, and the National LGBT Bar Association 

This workshop will explore the many ways the law defines parents and children, as well as the basis behind these definitions. Participants will analyze where the law is headed in these areas and why these issues are important.

  • Joseph C. Figini, Partner, Delaney McKinney LLP, moderator
  • Honorable Yvonne Williams, Associate Judge, Superior Court of the District of Columbia, speaker
  • Naomi R. Cahn, John Theodore Fey Research Professor of Law, The George Washington University School of Law, speaker
  • Macarena Sáez, Faculty Director, Center for Human Rights and Humanitarian Law, American University, Washington College of Law, speaker
  • Michele Zavos, Partner, Delaney McKinney LLP, speaker


Restorative Justice & Collateral Consequences: Mitigating the Harms of Juvenile Court Involvement

Sponsored by the National Juvenile Defender Center and the Office of the Attorney  General for the District of Columbia; cosponsored by the D.C. Bar Courts, Lawyers and the Administration of Justice Community, the D.C. Bar Family Law Community, and Open City Advocates

This session will explore the collateral consequences that juvenile-court-involved youth face as they transition into adulthood and how to mitigate those harms.  The session will also feature the Office of the Attorney General’s innovative Restorative Justice Program, which promotes healing, builds empathy, and can also work to mitigate collateral consequences.

  • Robert “Roman” Haferd, Restorative Justice Coordinator, Office of the Attorney General for the District of Columbia, presenter
  • Serena Holthe, Senior Staff Attorney and Pro Bono Counsel, National Juvenile Defender Center, presenter
  • Ameen Beale, Restorative Justice Facilitator, Office of the Attorney General for the District of Columbia, presenter
  • Whitney Louchheim, Co-Founder and Chief Operating Officer, Open City Advocates, presenter


Trauma & the Law:  Best Practices for Supporting LGBTQ Youth

Sponsored by Whitman-Walker Health; cosponsored by the D.C. Bar Courts, Lawyers and the Administration of Justice Community, the D.C. Bar Family Law Community, and the Wendt Center for Loss and Healing

LGBTQ youth are overrepresented in the criminal justice system.  This workshop will uncover the causes; explore the impacts of trauma (e.g., social isolation, family rejection, and discrimination) on LGBTQ youth development; and highlight social and health disparities.  Attendees will understand supportive strategies for engaging and empowering LGBTQ young people.

  • Amy Nelson, Director of Legal Services, Whitman-Walker Health, moderator
  • Angela N. Buckner, Volunteer Attorney, Whitman-Walker Health, speaker
  • Connor Cory, Staff Attorney Immigration, Whitman-Walker Health, speaker
  • Jess Davis-Ricci, Staff Attorney, Whitman-Walker Health, speaker 
  • Timothy Q. Elliott, LICSW, Coordinator of LGBT Youth Mental Health Programs, Whitman-Walker Health, speaker
  • Melissa Sellevaag, LICSW, Director of Training and Education, Wendt Center for Loss and Healing, speaker

4:15 - 5:45 p.m.


Accessing Mental Health Services for Children and Youth

Sponsored by the Children’s Law Center; cosponsored by the District of Columbia Behavioral Health Association, the D.C. Bar Courts, Lawyers and the Administration of Justice  Community, the D.C. Bar Family Law Community, and Mary’s Center
Many children involved in the court system are in need of mental health services. This panel will explore the services available, how to access them, and the challenges of connecting children to these services. 
  • Sharra E. Greer, Policy Director, Children's Law Center, moderator
  • Lee Ann Savio Beers, M.D., Associate Professor of Pediatrics, Diana L. and Stephen A. Goldberg Center for Community Pediatric Health and Medical Director, Municipal and Regional Affairs, Child Health Advocacy Institute, speaker
  • Mark LeVota, Executive Director, District of Columbia Behavioral Health Association, speaker
  • Marisa A. Parrella, LICSW, LCSW-C, Director of School Based Mental Health Program, Mary’s Center, speaker


Designing Child-Focused Parenting Plans

Sponsored by the D.C. Bar Family Law Community; cosponsored by the D.C. Bar Courts, Lawyers and the Administration of Justice Community

This program will address how to create child-focused parenting plans and custody orders, with an emphasis on what we can learn from research and best practices. The panel will use research to dispel some common myths about children and different custody arrangements.

  • Erin C. Golding, Family Law Attorney, Burr Law Firm, moderator
  • Lisa Herrick, Ph.D., Psychologist, Custody Mediator and Collaborative Coach, speaker
  • Sue Soler, LCSW-C, LICSW, Custody Mediator, Collaborative Coach and Parent Coordinator, speaker
  • Anne (Jan) W. White, Partner and Family Law Attorney, Pasternak & Fidis, speaker


Understanding the D.C. Criminal Justice System’s Approach to Child Victims and Witnesses

Sponsored by the Defenders of Victims’ Empowerment; cosponsored by the D.C. Bar Courts, Lawyers and the Administration of Justice Community, and the D.C. Bar Family Law Community

This panel will discuss the D.C. criminal justice system’s multi-disciplinary approach to working with children who have been victims of or witnesses to crime.  From the original report, to the investigation and resolution, our experts will discuss each step of the process and provide expert advice for practitioners working with children.

  • Julie Grohovsky, Defenders of Victims' Empowerment Board Member, Partner at Wu/Grohovsky PLLC, moderator
  • Stuart D. Allen, Assistant United States Attorney, United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia, speaker
  • Rachel Booker, Child & Adolescent Forensic Interviewer, Safe Shores, The D.C. Children's Advocacy Center, speaker
  • Detective Sarah Buc, D.C. Metropolitan Police Department, Youth Division, speaker
  • Veronica A. Vaughan, MSW, LGSW, Victim/Witness Specialist, United States Attorney's Office for the District of Columbia, speaker


Immigrant Children Navigating Complex Laws and High Stakes

Sponsored by the Kids in Need of Defense; cosponsored by Ayuda, the D.C. Bar Courts, Lawyers and the Administration of Justice Community, the D.C. Bar Family Law Community, and the Network for Victim Recovery of D.C.

The panel will address obstacles faced by immigrant children in D.C. who are before the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services and immigration courts, but who also have local issues before the D.C. Superior Courts.  Practitioners will learn about litigating child custody and guardianship matters for immigrant children, representing immigrant child crime victims in criminal prosecutions, and the ethical considerations that apply.

  • Teresa S. Lee, Senior Pro Bono Coordinating Attorney, Kids in Need of Defense, moderator
  • Janeth Chorlango, Program Manager, Latin American Youth Center, speaker
  • Josh Doherty, Managing Attorney, D.C. Immigration, Ayuda, speaker
  • Kristin Eliason, Co-Director of Legal Programs, Network for Victim Recovery of D.C., speaker
  • Rebecca Niburg, Pro Bono Coordinating Attorney, Kids in Need of Defense, speaker
  • Madeline Taylor Diaz, Supervising Attorney, Ayuda, speaker


Representation & Rehabilitation:  Protecting the Post-Disposition Rights of Children

Sponsored by Open City Advocates and the Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia; cosponsored by the D.C. Bar Courts, Lawyers and the Administration of Justice Community, the D.C. Bar Family Law Community, and the National Juvenile Defender Center 

Youth adjudged delinquent may be committed to the care of the District for years after disposition.  Children require legal representation during commitment to protect their rights and facilitate their access to services.  Learn from practitioners, policy advocates, and youth about this often ignored but fundamentally important right.

  • Nancy Glass, Juvenile Services Program Manager, Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia, moderator
  • Whitney Louchheim, Co-Founder and Chief Operating Officer, Open City Advocates, moderator 
  • Serena Holthe, Senior Staff Attorney and Pro Bono Counsel, National Juvenile Defender Center, speaker
  • Brittany Mobley, Staff Attorney, Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia, speaker
  • Gunita Singh, Legal Fellow, Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, speaker
  • Julie Swaney, Criminal Defense Attorney, Law Office of Julie Swaney, speaker


Advocacy for Children of Color:  Strategies for Decriminalization

Sponsored by the Washington Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Urban Affairs; cosponsored by the D.C. Bar Courts, Lawyers and the Administration of Justice Community, and the D.C. Bar Family Law Community
Experts in police reform, education, and children’s rights will discuss the ways children of color are criminalized, including through the discriminatory enforcement of rules in schools, on public transportation, and in their communities.  Panelists will highlight strategies for decriminalization using legal and legislative advocacy.
  • Kaitlin Banner, Deputy Legal Director, Washington Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Urban Affairs, moderator
  • Marques Banks, Equal Justice Works Fellow, Washington Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Urban Affairs, speaker
  • Elizabeth Wieser, Juvenile Section Chief, Office of the Attorney General for the District of Columbia, speaker

 

For more information, contact Verniesa R. Allen, CMP, [email protected] at 202-780-2802