National Adoption Day will be celebrated in many of Colorado’s Judicial Districts between Thursday, November 17 and Monday, November 21, 2011, with judges and magistrates throughout Colorado finalizing the adoption of more than 100 foster children into permanent families. Colorado is currently home to 365 children waiting for permanent families.
“Adoption Day is always a special day in Colorado’s courts,” said Chief Justice Michael L. Bender. “I am pleased to see many of our courts taking the opportunity to recognize National Adoption Day on a local level. However, this is but one day out of the year and we must remain focused on the fact that there are still many children in need of good homes.”
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.
Here’s a rundown of Adoption Day activities going on around Colorado:
- First Judicial District (Jefferson and Gilpin counties)
- Saturday, November 19, 2011, from 9:00 to 11:00 am at the Jefferson County Combined Court (100 Jefferson Parkway, Golden, CO 80401).
- District Court Judges Margie Enquist, Tamara Russell and Ann Meinster will finalize 18 adoptions for 12 families. Colorado Supreme Court Justice-designate Brian Boatright (currently a First Judicial District Court Judge) will be in attendance. For more information contact Kris Kinzli at (303) 271-4601 or Mallory Hyatt at (303) 271-4389 with Jefferson County Human Services.
- Second Judicial District (Denver County)
- Friday, November 18, 2011, from 8:45 am to noon at the Lindsey-Flanigan Courthouse (520 W. Colfax, Denver, CO 80204).
- Denver Juvenile Court Judges Donna Schmalberger and D. Brett Woods will join Juvenile Magistrates Howard Bartlett and Melanie Gilbert, along with Denver District Court Judges Morris Hoffman and Herbert Stern to unite 51 children with 33 families. For more information contact Barbara Bosley, Family Court Facilitator, Denver Juvenile Court, (720) 337-0584. This is the seventh annual celebration of National Adoption Day in Denver.
- Speakers at the event will include Denver Mayor Michael Hancock, Chief Judge Karen Ashby (Denver Juvenile Court), Penny May (Denver Department of Human Services), and Marne Gulley (adoptive parent).
- Speakers will make their remarks in the Cisneros Jury Assembly Room. Adoption proceedings will take place from 10:00 am to noon in courtrooms 2A, 2B, 2C, 2E, 2F and 2H. Judge Ashby has entered an order allowing Expanded Media Coverage; cameras are welcome.
- Third Judicial District (Huerfano and Las Animas counties)
- While no adoption proceedings are scheduled, District Court Judge Leslie Gerbracht reports that the Court will host a reception on Monday, November 21, 2011, at 2:30 pm for families who have adopted in the past. The reception will be held in the District Court Courtroom at the Las Animas County Courthouse (200 E. 1st St., Trinidad, CO 81082). For more information contact Arlene Lopez, DHS Child Protection Unit Supervisor, at (719) 846-2276.
- Fifth Judicial District (Clear Creek, Eagle, Lake and Summit counties)
- On Friday, November 18, 2011, from 1:30 to 4:30 pm, District Court Judge Russell Granger will preside over the adoption of five children into four families. The proceedings will take place at the Clear Creek County Courthouse (405 Argentine, Georgetown, CO 80444). For more information contact Kimberlee Hill, Clerk of Court, at (303) 679-4220.
- Tenth Judicial District (Pueblo County)
- On Friday, November 18, 2011, beginning at 9:30 am in Division B, District Court Judge Larry Schwartz will preside over the adoption docket. Nine children are slated to be adopted into seven families. For more information contact Karen Hiraki, Pueblo Department of Human Services, at (719) 583-4716.
- Eleventh Judicial District (Chaffee, Custer, Fremont and Park counties)
- On Thursday, November 17, 2011, Chief District Court Judge Charles Barton will finalize the adoptions of five children into four families. The adoption proceedings will begin at 1:30 pm at the Fremont County Justice Center (136 Justice Center Road, Canon City, CO 81212). For more information contact Nancy Myers, Fremont County DHS, at (719) 269-2092.
- Seventeenth Judicial District (Adams and Broomfield counties)
- On Saturday, November 19, 2011, from 9 am to noon, 23 children will be united with permanent families. The proceedings will take place at the Adams County Justice Center (1100 Judicial Center Drive, Brighton, CO 80601). District Court Judges Mark Warner and Francis Wasserman will join Magistrates Greg Beacom and Peter Stapp in presiding over the docket. For more information contact Jennifer Mendoza, Juvenile Court Programs Coordinator, at (303) 654-3230.
- Nineteenth Judicial District (Weld County)
- On Friday, November 18, 2011, from 1 to 5 pm, District Court Judge Marcelo Kopcow will preside over 11 adoptions and Magistrate Randall Lococo will preside over one adoption. Adoption proceedings will take place at the Weld County Courthouse (901 9th Ave. Greeley, CO 80631). For more information call Judge Kopcow’s chambers at (970) 351-7300 ext. 5490.
- Twenty-first Judicial District (Mesa County)
- On Friday, November 18, 2011, from 8 am to 1:30 pm, District Court Judge Valerie Robison will preside over an adoption docket bringing together eight children with seven families. The adoptions will take place at the Mesa County Justice Center (125 N. Spruce Street, Grand Junction, CO 81501). For more information contact Karen Martsolf, Mesa County DHS, at (970) 256-2453.
National Adoption Day is a collective national effort to raise awareness of the 107,000 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. That year, more than 250 events were held throughout the country to finalize the adoptions of more than 3,300 children in foster care, and to celebrate all families who adopt. Since 2000, more than 35,000 children have had their adoptions finalized on National Adoption Day.