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Colorado courts celebrate National Adoption Day; 176 foster children to be united with permanent families

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

DENVER – National Adoption Day is being celebrated in many of Colorado’s Judicial Districts throughout November, with judges and magistrates across Colorado finalizing the adoption of 176 foster children into permanent families. Colorado is currently home to 257 children waiting for permanent families.

                “Adoption Day in Colorado has become a special tradition and it makes me proud to see so many courts taking part in the celebration,” said Chief Justice Nancy E. Rice. “There is always a need to find good, permanent homes for children in need of loving families and we must remain focused on that mission.”

                Chief Justice Rice will attend Denver Adoption Day and welcome families during the opening ceremony at 9 a.m. in the Cisneros Jury Assembly Room at the Lindsey-Flanigan Courthouse (520 W. Colfax, Denver, CO 80204).

                Adoption Day events in Colorado are being coordinated through the courts, state and local human services departments, as well as other local and state child agencies and advocacy groups.

                Following is a rundown of November’s Adoption Day activities in Colorado:

First Judicial District (Jefferson and Gilpin counties) – On Saturday, Nov. 22, 2014, from 9 a.m. to noon, District Court Judges Ann Gail Meinster, Tamara S. Russell and Christopher Zenisek will preside over the adoptions of 29 children into 22 families at the Jefferson County Combined Court (100 Jefferson Parkway, Golden, CO 80401).  Cameras are welcome. For more information contact Mallory Hyatt, Jefferson County Department of Human Services at 303-271-4389.

Second Judicial District (Denver County) – On Friday, Nov. 14, 2014, from 9 a.m. to noon at the Lindsey-Flanigan Courthouse (520 W. Colfax, Denver, CO 80204), Denver Juvenile Court Judges Donna Schmalberger and Laurie Clark will join Juvenile Court Magistrates Howard Bartlett and Melanie Gilbert, along with Denver District Court Judges Andrew McCallin and John Madden, to unite 46 children with 33 families. This is the tenth annual celebration of National Adoption Day in Denver.  Expanded media coverage has been granted – cameras are welcome. For more information contact Barbara Bosley, Family Court Facilitator, Denver Juvenile Court, 720-337-0584.

Eighth Judicial District (Jackson and Larimer counties) – On Friday, Nov. 21, 2014, throughout the day, 12 children will be adopted into 9 families at the Larimer County Justice Center (201 La Porte Ave., Fort Collins, CO 80521). District Judges Gregory Lammons and Stephen Howard will preside. Requests for expanded media coverage will be granted with the permission of the families. For more information contact Donna Hochberg at 970-493-1718.

Tenth Judicial District (Pueblo County) – The Pueblo County Department of Social Services, in collaboration with Pueblo County’s Tenth Judicial District Court and Hope for Children (Promoting Safe and Stable Families agency), will celebrate National Adoption Day for the sixth year in a row throughout the morning of Nov. 21, 2014, at the new Dennis Maes Judicial Building (501 N. Elizabeth Street, Pueblo, CO 81003).  There will be 8 families finalizing adoptions on 18 children; ranging in age from toddlers to a 14-year-old. The adoptive families are from Grand Junction, Conifer, Colorado Springs, Fowler and Pueblo.  The adoption hearings will be followed by a reception for the adoptive families, relatives and friends. The adoptive families will be provided gift bags. For more information contact Karen Huraki at 719-583-4716.

Eleventh Judicial District (Chaffee, Custer, Fremont and Park counties) – National Adoption Day will be celebrated with the adoption of 4 children into 3 families. For more information, please contact Carrie Porter at 719-269-2092.  Colorado Court of Appeals Judge Karen Ashby, former Presiding Judge of the Denver Juvenile Court, will attend the adoption day celebration and make some welcoming remarks.

Twelfth Judicial District (Alamosa, Conejos, Costilla, Mineral, Rio Grande and Saguache counties) – On Wednesday, Nov. 19, 2014 at 3 p.m. Magistrate Amanda Pearson will preside over the adoption of 2 children into 1 family in Courtroom A of the Alamosa Courthouse (702 4th Street, Alamosa, CO 81101). The adoptions will be followed by a reception. All other families who have finalized adoptions in the Twelfth Judicial District in 2014 are invited to join Chief Judge Pattie Swift and Magistrate Pearson for the festivities. Expanded media coverage will be granted and cameras are welcome. For more information, please contact District Administrator Christina Gallegos at 719-589-7605.

Sixteenth Judicial District (Bent, Crowley and Otero counties) – A celebration for all families in the Sixteenth Judicial District who adopted in 2014 will be held on Tuesday, Nov. 18, 2014, at 9 a.m. in Room 206 of the Otero Combined Court (13 W. 3rd Street, La Junta, CO 81050).  No adoption hearings are scheduled, but District Judges Mark MacDonnell and Michael Schiferl will be in attendance to celebrate with the families.  A short presentation will be held and there will be a reception for all in attendance.  Expanded media coverage will be limited to the families that agree to have their name used and/or picture taken. For more information, please contact Wendy Larsen at 719-383-7123.

Seventeenth Judicial District (Adams and Broomfield counties) – On Saturday, Nov. 22, 2014, from 9 a.m. to noon, 9 children will be united with 7 permanent families. All families who finalized adoptions in Adams County in 2014 are invited to join the festivities. The proceedings will take place at the Adams County Justice Center (1100 Judicial Center Drive, Brighton, CO 80601) in the jury assembly room and courtrooms 601, 602, 603 and 604. District Judges Edward Moss and Craig Welling will join Magistrates Gregory Beacom and Fran Simonet in presiding over the docket. Cameras will be allowed in the courtroom with permission of the families. For more information contact Court Programs Coordinator Simone Jones at 303-654-3230.

Eighteenth Judicial District (Arapahoe, Douglas, Elbert and Lincoln counties) – Adoption Day hearings will be held on Thursday, Nov. 13, and Thursday, Nov. 20, 2014.    Magistrate Kathleen Janski will preside over adoptions for 22 families and 27 children. The hearings will be held in Division 24, Courthouse 2 of the Arapahoe County Justice Center (7305 S. Potomac Street, Centennial, CO 80112).  On Nov. 6, 2014, Magistrate Janski also finalized adoptions for 2 additional families. For more information, contact Melissa or Karli at 720-568-4883 or 720-568-4882.

Nineteenth Judicial District (Weld County) – On Friday, Nov. 21, 2014, throughout the day, District Judge W. Troy Hause will preside over adoptions for 15 children. Adoption proceedings will take place in Division 9 of the Weld County Courthouse (901 9th Ave. Greeley, CO 80631). The Court will not entertain expanded media coverage requests in the courtroom but will be offering parties the opportunity to speak with the media outside the courtroom upon written consent. For more information contact Lindy Duvall at 970-475-2721 or lindraea.duvall@judicial.state.co.us.

Twentieth Judicial District (Boulder County) – On Friday, Nov. 21, 2014, adoption hearings for 3 children being adopted into 3 families will be held from 8:30 to 10 a.m. Magistrate Elizabeth Brodsky will preside.  Adoption proceedings will take place in Division O of the Boulder County Justice Center (1777 Sixth Street, Boulder, CO 80302). A public celebration of Adoption Day will be held following the hearings from 10 a.m. to noon in the jury assembly room. Hayley Hunt, a University of Colorado at Boulder freshman who was adopted by her grandmother at the age of 16, will share her thoughts on adoption. Hunt earned a four-year scholarship funded by CU’s Guardian Scholars program, Health Images of Boulder and Realities for Children Boulder County. For more information call Magistrate Brodsky’s chambers at 303-441-3742.

Twenty-First Judicial District (Mesa County) – On Friday, Nov. 21, 2014, from 8 to 10 a.m. and again from noon to 1:15 p.m., District Court Judge Valerie Robison will preside over the adoptions of 6 children into 6 families.  The hearings will be held in Division 5 at the Mesa County Justice Center (125 N. Spruce Street, Grand Junction, CO 81501). Cameras will be allowed in the courtroom with the permission of the families. For more information, contact Dena Neujahr with Mesa County Department of Human Services at 970-248-2818 or Dena.neujahr@mesacounty.us, or Dee Green with Division 5 at dee.green@judicial.state.co.us or 970-257-3633.

National Adoption Day is a collective national effort to raise awareness of the more than 100,000 children in foster care across the country waiting to find permanent, loving families. Since its inception, National Adoption Day has made the dreams of thousands of children come true through the cooperative work of courts, judges, attorneys, adoption professionals, child welfare agencies and advocates to finalize adoptions and find permanent, loving homes for children in foster care.

National Adoption Day is celebrated every year in November. In 2006, for the first time, National Adoption Day was celebrated in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. This year, events will be held throughout the country to finalize the adoptions of more than 4,500 children in foster care, and to celebrate all families who adopt. Since 2000, more than 50,000 children have had their adoptions finalized on National Adoption Day.

Editor’s Note: Except where otherwise specifically allowed, any news media organizations wishing to record audio and/or video or take still photographs of the proceedings must receive prior approval from the Court, and participants will have the choice to decline to be taped or photographed. Click here for rules governing expanded media coverage, as well as an application form.

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