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2014 National CASA Judge of the Year: Cindy Lederman

Miami-Dade County Judge Cindy Lederman was honored with a National CASA Award of Excellence at the National CASA Annual Conference in June.

Judge Cindy LedermanJudge Cindy Lederman has been an advocate for children and a catalyst for change for more than 20 years.

In the words of the Florida Guardian ad Litem Program staff member who nominated Judge Lederman for this award:

"Judge Cindy Lederman has rewritten the manual on how to be a judge in dependency court. Many years ago, the idea of justice in a dependency case often ended with the adjudication and the decision of whether a child would return to his family or be shunted off to a foster home with no further court action. This is no longer is this the case. Judge Lederman's vision, leadership skills and passion have resulted in significant court reform and change to practice and policy in court."

Judge Lederman is widely recognized for using research and science to transform the juvenile court and has received national recognition for her efforts. In her 20 years presiding over dependency cases, she has led many innovative programs, obtained numerous grants and implemented evidence-based interventions for children and families. The Dependency Court Intervention Program for Family Violence, the Girl’s Advocacy Project and the Miami Safe Start Initiative (which resulted in the opening of the country’s first Early Head Start facility for maltreated infants and toddlers) are just a few of the programs for which she has been the catalyst.

We offer congratulations and appreciation to Judge Lederman for her many contributions to our court systems.


The US Department of Justice has supported CASA advocacy since 1985 through its Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention.
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