WASHINGTON, DC - Chief Judge Rufus G. King III today installed five new magistrates judges as required by the District of Columbia Family Court Act of 2001. The five new magistrates are: Carol Ann Dalton, S. Pamela Gray, Noel T. Johnson, Alec Haniford Deull, and Juliet J. McKenna.
"This is a very exciting time for the new Family Court - our first five magistrate judges are joining the Superior Court to help us implement changes that will improve the lives of DC's abused and neglected children. There is no more important work an attorney can do and these attorneys are dedicated, experienced, and capable. I know they will succeed," said Chief Judge King.
The Act specified the hiring of five magistrate judges by March in order to enhance the Court's ability to find permanent placements for abused and neglected children. These five magistrate judges will initially handle the cases of children who have been under the care of the District's Child and Family Services Agency for the longest time.
"Working with the great team we have already assembled in the Family Court, I know that these five magistrate judges will help us achieve permanent, loving homes for abused and neglected children in a more expeditious fashion," said Judge Lee F. Satterfield, Presiding Judge of the newly-created Family Court. "They are an energetic group and will join a strong bench in the Family Court that is committed to achieving meaningful change."
The five new magistrate judges are:
Carol Ann Dalton - Ms. Dalton has served for the past two years as head of the Superior Court's Council for Child Abuse and Neglect office. Prior to that time she practiced family law in the District for eight years, handling abuse and neglect cases, primarily as a guardian ad litem, but also representing caretakers and parents. She is a graduate of the City College of New York; received her J..D. from New York Law School and her LL.M. from George Washington University's National Law Center.
S. Pamela Gray - Ms. Gray is currently Deputy Director of the Public Defender Services, and was previously staff attorney there, working with PDS for a total of 11 years. Her work has included handling felonies, as well as supervision of litigation in all areas, including juvenile and mental health cases. She has represented PDS before many city agencies and served on the Mayor's Blue Ribbon Commission on Youth Safety and Juvenile Justice Reform. Ms. Gray graduated from Montclair State College and received her J.D. from Rutgers School of Law.
Noel T. Johnson - Mr. Johnson is currently Office of the Attorney General for the District of Columbia's Director of Child Support Operations in the Domestic Violence Intake Center. He has worked on child support issues with the Corporation Counsel since 1987, litigating a high volume of paternity and support matters. Previously Mr. Johnson clerked for the DC Office of Bar Counsel and the law firm of Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver, and Jacobson; while in law school he clerked for a federal magistrate and interned in the US Attorney's Office for DC Mr. Johnson is a graduate of the Catholic University of America and received his J.D. from Tulane University School of Law.
Alec Haniford Deull - Mr. Haniford Deull has been in private practice since 1993 handling child abuse & neglect and special education cases. His previous work experience included internships at the Legal Aid Society of the District of Columbia and the Washington Legal Clinic for the Homeless. In addition, Mr. Deull served as a clinical law student handling family cases during law school. He graduated from University of Michigan and received his J.D., magna cum laude, from American University.
Juliet J. McKenna - Ms. McKenna is the Executive Director of Lawyers for Children America and previously served as Legal Services Director and Public Interest Fellow at that organization. Her work involves supervision and support for volunteer attorneys serving as guardians ad litem and training attorneys in the practice of family law. Ms. McKenna previously served as an Assistant Corporation Counsel in the Abuse and Neglect Section of the Family Services Division of the Office of the Attorney General for the District of Columbia and as an associate at Crowell & Moring. She is a graduate of Georgetown University and Yale Law School.