The hub of information for the Second Judicial Circuit Guardian ad Litem Program, our blog contains posts with announcements, news and events, articles, periodicals and additions or updates to our website.

This page contains published posts from the November 2021 archive sorted chronologically with the newest at the top.

Three Employment Opportunities With The Second Judicial Circuit Guardian ad Litem Program

The Second Judicial Circuit Guardian ad Litem Program is hiring. We currently have three employment opportunities listed on jobs.myflorida.com. Click on the job titles below to learn more and apply.

Child Advocate Manager

The Child Advocate Manager I position offers an extremely interesting and challenging opportunity for job-seekers engaged in a career of social work and family service. It provides a great venue for increased professional growth and personal development. You will experience and benefit from significant exposure to critical aspects of child/family crisis intervention, partnering with community-based support service agencies, attorneys and legal "best interests" advocacy, knowledge of Florida statutes governing child welfare, and coaching and consulting with locally-recruited, child advocate volunteers. Posting Closing Date: November 19, 2021

Senior Program Attorney

This is highly responsible work providing legal counsel and representation to a circuit Guardian ad Litem (GAL) Program which advocates for the best interests of abused, neglected and abandoned children involved in dependency proceedings. The Senior Program Attorney provides legal representation in court on behalf of the GAL Program, files pleadings and motions, and attends depositions, mediations and staffings with staff, volunteers and social service agencies concerning children represented by the GAL Program. Posting Closing Date: November 15, 2021

Volunteer Recruiter

The GAL Volunteer Recruiter position offers an extremely interesting and challenging opportunity for job-seekers engaged in a career of direct sales/marketing or non-profit, community outreach programs involving volunteer recruiting and management. It provides a great venue for increased professional growth and personal development. You will experience and benefit from daily exposure to critical aspects of partnering with a diverse group of community partners including but limited to: community-based service agencies, non-profit organizations, county governments, faith-based organizations, large and small business operators, local media outlets, civic-minded citizens and current GAL child advocate volunteers. Posting Closing Date: November 29, 2021

In Print: Consider Serving Our Community As A Pro Bono Attorney

An opinion piece written by Circuit Director Deborah Moore recently appeared in the Tallahassee Democrat's "Your Turn" section. Her article is reproduced below.

Thank you to the Tallahassee Democrat for sharing our program with their readers.

Consider serving our community as a pro bono attorney
by Deborah Moore

Tallahassee Democrat
Friday, October 29, 2021

October is Pro Bono Month, when the nation recognizes the contributions of attorneys who volunteer their services to others.

At the Florida Guardian ad Litem (GAL) Program, we know the impact these pro bono attorneys can have. Statewide, they're using their skills, knowledge, and compassion to help abused, abandoned and neglected children and achieve our program’s mission of helping these children find safe, permanent homes.

Whether advocating for a child in the dependency system or mentoring a child who needs extra support, our legal community routinely steps up and volunteers.

"Our partnership with pro bono attorneys helps us tremendously in making sure children find a safe, permanent home as quickly as possible," said Dennis Moore, interim Executive Director of the GAL Program.

The number of attorneys volunteering with Guardian ad Litem has grown more than 50 % statewide over the last year. With support and training from the program, pro bono attorneys bolster projects such as Defending Best Interests, which represents hundreds of children during the appeals process.

Pro bono attorneys who volunteer their legal skills with Guardian ad Litem create better outcomes for children and youth. They work with thousands of GAL volunteer child advocates to help provide a brighter future for Florida’s children.

Locally, too, the program is recruiting more attorneys to serve as advocates on cases in the 2nd Circuit.

"It isn't necessary to be an attorney to be a GAL volunteer, but it is helpful when the time comes to prepare court reports, attend hearings, or sometimes testify about a child's best interests," said local GAL Pro Bono Attorney Barbara Busharis who volunteers as a GAL Volunteer Advocate. "The program’s attorney does all the necessary court filings, while I concentrate on gathering information and getting to know the children."

In celebration of Pro Bono Month, we want to recognize and thank all pro bono attorneys who tirelessly and selflessly volunteer to help children and youth, especially in foster care. They are making a difference – one child and one case at a time. But since the job is never done, we hope other attorneys will follow their lead and help the GAL Program represent the best interests of children in court and the community.

"As a GAL Volunteer Advocate for the past 14 years, I have witnessed the profound need for additional volunteer advocates to represent our most vulnerable children," said Terry Rigsby, also a local GAL pro bono attorney. "At the same time, however, I feel our community is blessed to have such a dedicated GAL Program, which always strives to act in the best interests of the child."

We encourage others to thank pro bono attorneys for their service.

For more information on how you can volunteer your legal skills with the Guardian ad Litem Program, please visit www.gal2.org.

Deborah Moore is the Circuit Director for the Guardian ad Litem Program in the 2nd Judicial Circuit.