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Message from the Executive Director

Dear friends and colleagues: Many of you have followed the work of the Children’s Law Center for years now. Some of you have only recently learned of our work, or perhaps have had occasion to use our services or refer a child or parent to us. There are still others who we have not yet reached, and who may need our help some day, and we continue to look for ways to provide outreach to those individuals and families. Since 1989, the Children’s Law Center has stayed true to its mission of protecting the rights of children and ensuring that the systems charged with their care, custody and education uphold their responsibilities. Representing children and youth is a privilege, and one which requires specialized training, compassion and an understanding of developmental differences from their adult counterparts. Providing holistic representation requires that our lawyers look not only at how to achieve positive legal outcomes for their young clients, but also how other high risk factors for the child can be minimized or removed. I’m proud of the lawyers and advocates who work at the Children’s Law Center every day providing quality legal services to some of the most high risk children and youth in our community. This past year, we achieved positive legal outcomes in 89% of our cases, and helped children in countless other ways with securing other needed services, such as housing, counseling, education, employment or psychological or medical care. Our continued focus on transitioning youth has grown in scope as recognition of the complex needs of systems youth continues to gain traction and interest. We achieved other milestones this year as well. After 12 years of litigation against Ohio’s juvenile correctional agencies, a long and well deserved end to the case was achieved in December after the closure of 5 facilities, a 70% reduction in youth, and significant improvement in conditions. We ended the long standing practice of reliance on solitary confinement as a method of behavior management. We continue to focus on reducing youth incarceration rates and improving conditions of confinement in other cases across Ohio through litigation, policy work and communications about best practices and sound juvenile justice policies. Our Lexington office moved this year, and I could not be more proud of the new team in place in 2015-16. Stay tuned this year for great new developments from them and others in our Covington office. I hope you will find this snapshot of the year helpful in better understanding our work. It has made me reflect back upon how much we have accomplished, yet how much is left to do. Best regards,


Page 1

FY2016 Staff

Page 2

Individual Advocacy

Page 3-5

Training and Education

Page 6

Impact Litigation

Pages 7-8

Public Policy Work

Pages 9-10

Annual Fundraising Events

Pages 11-12

Donor Listing

Pages 13-16

Table of Contents

FY2016 Board of Directors

Mission Statement Children’s Law Center, Inc. (CLC) is a non-profit legal service center protecting the rights of children and youth to help them overcome barriers and transition into adulthood, better advocate for their needs, and successfully contribute to society. It provides individual legal advocacy to children and youth, and through public policy work, training and education, impact litigation, and juvenile defender support services, seeks to improve the systems that serve them. CLC offers services in both Kentucky and Ohio, and collaborates with other organizations within the region and nationally on a variety of topics.


Board of Directors 2015-2016 1

President Michael Whiteman, Esq.

Vice President Carrie Shufflebarger, Esq.

Treasurer Julie Roesel Belton

Secretary Jamie Ramsey, Esq.

J. David Bender, Esq.

Elizabeth Malloy, Esq.

Donald G. Benzinger, Esq.

Michael Marker

Dr. Frank Biro, MD

Kerrie Martin

Jennifer Branch, Esq.

Jennifer Mearns

Tonya S. Burns, Esq.

Kenyon Meyer, Esq.

Naime Clarke

Eddie Ostreicher, Ph.D.

Rocco D’Ascenzo, Esq.

Louise Roselle, Esq.

Brooke Hiltz

Lowell Schechter, Esq.

Cathy Jackson, Esq.

Rhonda B. Schechter, Esq.

James Kruer, Esq.

Jonathan Thornberry

Jennifer Lawrence, Esq.

Rachel Votruba

Paul Long

Stephen Worth, Esq.

Kim Tandy, Esq.

Managing Attorney Acena Beck, Esq.

Managing Attorney, Lexington Amanda Mullins Bear, Esq.

Ohio Policy and Litigation Director

Staff 2015-2016

Executive Director

Rickell Howard, Esq.

Attorneys Development Director John Vissman

Business Manager

Emily Cochran, Esq. Tiffanny Smith, Esq. Chelsea Young, Esq. Vickie Arrowood, Esq. Eric Rottinghaus, Esq.

Louise Sheard

Consultants Office Administrator Maggie Kane

Ava Crow, Esq. Anne Flynn Lauren Litton, Esq.

Youth Re-Entry Advocate Garien Gatewood

Chase Children’s Law Center Clinic Director Amy Halbrook, Esq.


Individual Advocacy

Individual Advocacy for Children How Many children & Youth did We Serve from July 2015— June 2016?

Northern Kentucky - 280 Central Kentucky - 142 Louisville - 57 Eastern Kentucky - 31 Ohio - 68



s Serv


In addition to the 578 youth we provided with full representation, we provided 282 others with brief information, consultations, and/or referrals.

Isaiah “CLC helped me with success and helped me get where I needed to go. If it wasn’t for Emily Cochran’s help and support, I never would have graduated high school. I came from a long journey, but I made it. A lot of people didn’t think I would make it, but Emily believed in me and was there for me every step of the way. If it wasn’t for CLC, I would not be where I am today.”

What do our lawyers do?


CLC lawyers identify the risk factors of our young clients and work holistically to resolve the legal issues impacting them. 89% of our clients experience positive legal outcomes.

Legal Issues Include: Unmet Mental Health Needs Disruption to the Education Process

Juvenile and Adult Court Issues Family Court Involvement


62% of our clients experienced issues directly linked to poverty.

56% of ou r clients experience d problems related to their educ ation.

Two-thirds (2/3) of our clients had pending court cases including delinquency, status offenses, family court, criminal court, or incarceration.

Individual Advocacy

Presenting Problems

Nearly half of our clients experienced physical, mental, and/or sexual abuse.



56% of our clients had emotional, physical, and/ or cognitive disabilities.



Youth Homelessness Project This past year CLC’s Youth Homelessness Project connected with 240 other service providers to coordinate service delivery and we developed three county-specific research guides targeted for use by youth. Children with insecure housing often experience higher rates of depression and other mental health issues, physical illnesses, and difficulty in school.

In FY16 Children’s Law Center served 57 youth experiencing homelessness in Kenton, Campbell and Boone Counties.

Youth Re-Entry Project

Education: 24 youth served identified education as a barrier. HISTORY




19 youth were assisted directly, either by enrolling in credit recovery schools, CPS schools, virtual, or GED programs. The other 5 opted out of pursing education further.

Employment: 24 youth served identified employment as a barrier. 15 youth are eligible for employment. The other 9 youth are in DYS or DRC.

13 of the 15 eligible youth have been employed, had job interviews and/or leads, or have employment programs to attend in the near future.

Housing: 18 youth served identified housing as a barrier. 13 youth have secured housing or have a housing plan to be implemented upon release from detention.



Individual Advocacy: Youth in Transition

Youth In Transition


JFS helped resolve housing issues for 4 youth.

During FY16 CLC’s project coordinator, Garien Gatewood, has provided 44 youth the services and support they need to successfully re-enter their communities after spending time in out-of-home placements.

Children’s Law Clinic In 2011 CLC and Chase College of Law collaborated to form the NKU Chase Children’s Law Center Clinic. The Clinic, which is housed on the third floor of CLC’s Covington office, is an educational model that allows law students to gain real-world experience representing young clients while being closely supervised by Chase Law professor Amy Halbrook. Once oriented to practice, students are assigned to actual cases. Through participation in the Clinic, students develop skills necessary to the successful practice of law and are exposed to multiple perspectives on justice, fairness and morality. Each student, preparing to soon become a lawyer, is encouraged to reflect on attorneys' roles and ethical responsibilities.

Training and Education

NKU Chase College of Law

In FY16 the Chase Children’s Law Center Clinic students, under the direct supervision of Professor Amy Halbrook, took on 59 family law cases. In addition to the Chase Law Clinic, Children’s Law Center works with students from many other law schools in the region, as well as some students from undergraduate programs.


Impact Litigation

Impact Litigation CLC lawyers continue to use litigation as a tool to transform the systems serving youth and promote systemic policy reforms. This year, CLC has worked to improve conditions of confinement in state and local detention facilities, enhance procedural protections for youth in juvenile court and schools, and provided supportive services for litigation driven by other attorneys and agencies.

Ohio v. Matthew Aalim – (Supreme Court of Ohio) A brief for Amicus Curiae was filed on January 8, 2016 by CLC on behalf of ten (10) organizations in this state appeal challenging Ohio laws that require mandatory transfer of youth to adult court. Oral arguments were held before the Supreme Court of Ohio in April 2016.

S.R. v. Korzenborn — (U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Kentucky) This federal civil rights case was filed in August 2015 by CLC, Dinsmore & Shohl and the ACLU on behalf of two Covington elementary school students with disabilities. The children, ages 8 and 9, were handcuffed by a school resource officer unnecessarily and with excessive force. The complaint alleged that handcuffing the young students violated their Fourth Amendment rights, and that the Sheriff’s Department’s policy permitting the handcuffing of students with disabilities practices violated the Americans with Disabilities Act. In October 2015, the United States Department of Justice filed a statement of interest in this matter.

Matthews v. Williams — (U.S. District Court, Southern District of Ohio) This federal civil rights case, filed in 2014 by CLC and private counsel, alleged that youth before the Hamilton County Ohio Juvenile Court were routinely arrested and detained without sufficient findings of probable cause in violation of their due process rights. In October 2015, Juvenile Court officials agreed to revise several Juvenile Court policies and practices related to processing complaints, issuing arrest warrants, making probable cause determinations and conducting detention hearings. The settlement also resulted in an amendment to the County’s local rules of practice in order to ensure that due process is afforded to all youth appearing before the court.

J.H. v. Moore and MCJDC – (U.S. District Court, Southern District of Ohio) CLC joined this federal civil rights case as co-counsel for Plaintiffs in October 2014. The case was filed on behalf of nine (9) youth held under unconstitutional conditions, including


S.H. v. Stickrath — (U.S. District Court, Southern District of Ohio) This federal class action civil rights case, originally filed in November of 2004 on behalf of youth held in Ohio’s state juvenile detention facilities, reached its final conclusion and was terminated by agreement in December of 2015. The suit alleged system-wide failure regarding conditions of confinement that endangered youth’s health, safety, and well-being and denied them of due process. State and youth attorneys worked collectively to create a comprehensive settlement that was approved by the court in May 2008. From 2008 to 2015, the Ohio Department of Youth Services underwent a tremendous shift in culture and programming, including: closing 5 juvenile detention facilities, reducing its youth population by nearly 70%, drastically reducing the use of solitary confinement practices and making significant improvements to its system of mental health and programming.

Impact Litigation

lengthy periods of solitary confinement and confinement in mechanical restraint chairs, in the Multi-County Juvenile Detention Center in Lancaster, Ohio. The detention facility holds youth from Perry, Fairfield, Licking and Hocking Counties in Ohio. The case concluded in November 2015 resulting in compensation for the youth Plaintiffs and a private settlement agreement which required on-going policy reforms of the detention center’s seclusion practices.

Youth Facility Population Decreased by 75%

450 1,800 + of 8 youth facilities Were closed 5







Public Policy Work

Stop Solitary for Ohio Youth In March of 2015, we launched the Stop Solitary for Ohio's Youth Campaign to bring attention to the harmful effect of isolation on youth in confinement. The campaign has garnered the support of more than 35 state and national organizations, and hundreds of individuals who join us in recognizing the need for more humane and effective treatment of children. The Campaign includes litigation, education, communications strategies and policy reforms as strategies.

© Richard Ross,

Stop Solitary for Ohio’s Youth is committed to eliminating the harmful practice of secluding youth in adult jails and prisons, state youth correctional facilities, local juvenile detention centers, and residential treatment facilities.

“The Box” In March of 2015 Turner Construction Company was commissioned by the Children’s Law Center to construct a full-sized replica of a solitary confinement cell. “The Box” was presented for the first time as an interactive exhibit at the Ohio State Bar Association Convention, which took place from April 27 through April 29. The exhibit was intended to raise awareness about the use of solitary confinement in youth facilities in Ohio and to help participants develop a deeper understanding of the experience of isolation. The debut of The Box at the convention marked approximately one year since the Stop Solitary for Ohio’s Youth Campaign was launched. Since that time, the campaign continues to garner support and there is a complementary campaign that started in April on the national level.


In November, the Children's Law Center and its partner the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center sponsored a powerful conversation about the need for juvenile justice reform in Hamilton County. The forum identified the need for:     

Safely reducing youth arrest and detention rates Improving youth/police relationships improving educational opportunities Reducing racial disparities at key points Facilitating successful youth re-entry

Nearly 200 people, including youth leaders, community organizations, and national experts in the area of juvenile justice, were in attendance. The Youth Lives Matter Forum featured James Bell, the founder and executive director of the Burns Institute, Lisa Thurau, the founder and executive director of Strategies for Youth, and Carter Stewart, the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District Ohio.

Public Policy Work

Advocating for Ohio Youth

Emmy Nominated We were honored to work with the Fusion Network team on its Emmy nominated documentary Prison Kids. This 60 minute documentary describes a failed juvenile justice system which has relied upon mass incarceration of children, often in ineffective and harmful conditions. Prison Kids includes the stories of three youth who were incarcerated at DYS, including their experiences in solitary confinement. Kim Tandy is featured as one of the Plaintiffs' lawyers who helped to end this practice.


Annual Fundraising Events

This year more than 500 people attended our 4th Annual Dancing with the CLC Stars Fundraising Event and we raised more than $73,000 in unrestricted funds to support our work representing children and youth. Grand Champion: Brent Cooper Talent Champions: Jennifer Kinsley & Jamie Ramsey Fundraising Champion: Joe Bayer Other CLC Dancing Stars: David Armstrong, Elizabeth Knight, Lisa Mulcahy, and Leah Zipperstein! Save the Date: The 5th Annual Dancing with the CLC Stars will be on Thursday, May 25, 2017.


Every year, CLC partners with Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati for the holiday fun and fundraiser. We raised $4,500 in 2015 and more than 100 children and their families attended the performance. Funds raised through the event are used by CLC to help Greater Cincinnati's children and youth remain in school classrooms, are used to help homeless children and youth in Northern Kentucky, are used to help youth reentering into society from incarceration or moving out of foster care, and are used to ensure children's and youth's fundamental rights are upheld.

Annual Fundraising Events


This event is dedicated to Mary Fisher.


Donor Listing 13

Individual donors Elizabeth Abdnor David Adkisson Richard Alexander David Alford Jane Allan Julia Allegrini Barry Applegate Jennifer Arey Jody Aschendorf Jessica Baesel Larry J. Bailey Margaret Ballard Charlene Barlow Deana Battle Judy Bautista Julie Bayer Kristine Bayer Jay Francis Bayer Megan Bayless Jillian Beach Amanda Mullins Bear Kelcie E. Beausir Acena Beck Julie Belton David J. Bender Cyril Benjamin Jennifer Berman Mary Lou Blount Susanne Bookser Patricia C. Borne Curt & Deborah Bowen Jenna Bradley Jennifer Branch Carol Bredemeyer Greg Brown Doug Brueckner Janice Brueckner Steve Brunson Matthew Buck Bryan Burke Fred Burns Briuber Tonya Burns Krista Burton

Wendy Calaway Cheryl Campbell Anne Capple Craig Carlson Helen Carroll Carri Chandler Angela Chang Fredrick Chen Kelly Chirumbolo Naima Clarke Emily Cochran Allison Cohen Jason Cohen Kathleen Cole Marcus Coleman Jennifer Colvin Brent Cooper Olesja Cormney Sarah Cornell Anna Coutts Joshua Crabtree Paula Dahmus Rocco D’Ascenzo Darcy D’Ascenzo Sidney Day Paul DeMarco Suellen Dempsey Christie Denton Brian Dershaw Jean Deters Jerry Dirr Jeffery Douglas William Draznik Thaddeus Driscoll Stephanie Drummonds Lisa Edwards Katherine Erdman M.K. Erdman Rhonda Eutsey James Evans Brian Evans Katrina Farley Stephanie Fieler

Ken Fieler Barbara Fillion Raymond Finke Julia Foster Steve Frank Susan Shuller Frantz Vanessa A. Freytag Jeffrey Galles Michael Ganson Sarah Ganson Jim Gast Garien Gatewood Jodie Geiser Alphonse A. Gerhardstein Lois Germain Wayne Giampietro Doug Ginn Meghan M. Glynn James Goetz David Goodwin Daniel Gormley Jack Gormley John Gould James Grau Trey Grayson Deborah Greenman Clay Griffith Charnella Grossman Chris Grubbs Penelope Lynn Grubbs Karri Haffner Lucas Hail Amy Halbrook Jaime Haley Emily Hanselman Angie Harnett Kevin Harper Bridget Hay Raymond Hebert Paul Hegedus Lambert Hehl David Heidrich Robert Heil

Debbie Heimbrock Stephen Henke Sarah Henry Jason & Brooke Hiltz Laura Hinegardner Lu Ann Holmes Raymond Holthaus Jean Houck Thomas Paul Howard Rickell Howard Bill Huber Jordan Huizenga Barbara Hummel Jeffrey Huo Max Iltzch Cathy Jackson Jeannette Jacunski Kathleen Jagger Mark Jeffreys Candyse Jeffries Kathleen Johnson Gregory Johnson Ashley Smith Juarez Erin Kalbaugh Margaret Kane Marcy Kanter Julie Kantor Bridget Kathman Kennith Katkin Kevin Kavanaugh Michelle Keating Kate Keller Fern Ketchum Suellen Kinsley Jennifer Kinsley Katherine Klaeren Peter Klear Brian Knight Nathan Knipper Elizabeth Knupple Amy Kolczak Mary Kovalesky Pam Kravetz

Jeanette Kremer Diane Kuhnell Carolyn LaBar Mark Lampert Carla Landon John Lawhead Jennifer Lawrence Eric Leach Carla Leader Christopher Leary Elliot Lieb Suzanne Linder J.R. Linneman Derek Lipscombe Renee Locker Jean Loftus Judy Long David MacMillan Tina Manchise Michael Marker Jey Marks Bleuzette Marshall John S. Marshall Kerrie Martin Sheryl Mattis Charlotte Mayhew Barbara McFarland Diana McGlade Stephen McMillan Michelle McMullen Todd McMurtry Jennifer Mearns Daniel Melching Laura Menge Catherine Metzger Katherine Miefert Jayne Miller Jill Miller Dina Minneci Sharahn Monk Michael Monks Ruth Moreland Leisa Mulcahy

Kevin Murphy Christy Nageleisen Joseph Nava Van Needham Will Needham Mark Neikirk David Nienbar Harvey Nixon Evan Nolan Edward Oestreicher Sue Ott Charnella Palaby Jason Payne Deanna Penn Nancy Perry Lisa Pieper Pamela Pigler Sondra Pilyer Carolyn Pione Rhonda Ploeger Tina Porter Tom Prewitt Michelle Proud Aftab Pureval Tracey Quatkemeyer Allen Ramsey Jamie Ramsey Sharmilli Reddy Cynthia Reed Dusty Rhodes Brad Richey George Riehle David Robertshaw Jody Robinson William Robinson IV Anthony Roderick Jeannine R. Rohrkasse Courtney Romans Jenny Roose Louise Roselle Jeff Rosentiel Susan Rossi Joseph Rouse

Donor Listing

Individual donors


Donor Listing 15

Individual donors Teresa Rump Regina Russon Bethany Rustic Smith Marita Salkowski David Sanders Mark & Amy Sapsford Morgan Sarakatsannis Julie Schechter Torres Lowell & Judy Schechter Amanda Scheidt Dennis Schoff Anthony Schumacher Peter Seiter Victoria Sena Chuck Sessions Maida Sessions Lindsay Shade Marida Shands Jamie Sharp Louise Sheard Rusty Sheehan James Shelton Carrie Shufflebarger Gina Sieving Tracey Sigler Dale Silver Jane Simon Lois Singleton Mike Sipple, Jr. Emily Smith Gale Smith Tiffanny Smith Ashley Smith Juarez Frank & Patricia Sommerkamp Nina Sorensen David Spaulding Peter Stackpole Tracie Stacy Tammy Stapleton Kristopher Steele Shelli Stine William Stokes

Gina Suieving Brendan Sullivan Lori Sullivan Morgan Sullivan Jack Tandy Kim Tandy Amy Tanner Clare Taylor Deana Taylor Battle Geoffrey Thomas Lytle Thomas Jeanne Houck Thomas Shawn Thompson Terra Thompson Jonathan Thornberry Lisa H. Thurau Tara Tieman Tabitha Tolliver Shannon Tomek Sarah Tomes Sarah Topy E.H. Trace Pamela Treloar Teri Tretter Craig Tritschler Faith Tupman Travis Turner Stacey Turner Sherrie Turner Jane Underwoood Ben Virost John Vissman Jim & Rachel Voltruba Sally & Stephen Walker David Wallace Shelly Wallace David Wallace Jen Walters Katina Walters Katherine Warner Warren Weber Pam Weber Mark Weiss

Thomas Welch Robert Wellington Bill Weltzer Andrew Wesseling Kevin Whelan Rhonda Whitaker Michael Whiteman James B. & Ronna K. Willis James Willman John Wolper Mike Wong Katherine Worland Jennifer Yaks Chelsea Young Geraldine Zembrodt Edward & Kimberley Zerhusen Susan Zipkin Ellen Zipperstein Miranda Zolot


Applegate Dentistry Baird Private Wealth Management Bayer Becker BB&T Big Nick Classic Blue & Company, LLC. Calfee, Halter, & Griswold, LLP Centennial, Inc. C-Forward Chamber Office Park Developers CHC Manufacturing, Inc. Chiropractic Healthcare of Northern Kentucky Crossroads Property, LLC. CSX Corporate Citizenship Disability Rights Ohio Duke Energy Gerhardstein and Branch Heritage Bank JPM Consulting Keating Muething & Klekamp LLP Kroger Loftus Plastic Surgery Center NKU College of Education & Human Service Northern Kentucky Bar Association Northern Kentucky Chamber of Commerce Northern Kentucky University Oriental Wok Robert W. Baird and Company, Inc. SpliceNet Strategic Settlements Taft Stettinius & Hollister LLP The Lawrence Firm Thompson Hine Thomson Reuters Thomas More College Toyota Motor Engineering and Manufacturing North America, Inc. Turner Construction Company Zalla Companies

Andrew Jergens Foundation Baird Foundation, Inc. Charles and Ruth Seligman Family Foundation Cincinnati Bar Foundation Impact Fund Kentucky Administrative Office of the Courts Kentucky Bar Foundation P&G Fund Public Welfare Foundation R.C. Durr Foundation Roselle Foundation Spaulding Foundation The Butler Foundation The Carol Ann and Ralph V. Haile, Jr. Foundation/US Bank The Daniel and Susan Pfau Foundation The George Gund Foundation The Greater Cincinnati Foundation Thomas J. Emery Memorial United Way of Greater Cincinnati United Way of the Bluegrass WHAS Crusade for Children

Donor Listing




Covington 1002 Russell Street Covington, KY 41011 P: 859.431.3313 | F: 859.655.7553

Lexington 215 W. Short St. Ste. 205 Lexington, KY 40507 P: 859.253.3353 | F: 859.275.1115

FY 2016 Annual Report  
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