Longtime Georgia Juvenile Court Judge Peggy H. Walker was elected to the Executive Committee of the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges (NCJFCJ) earlier this week at their 74th national conference in New York City. Spanning the next five years, Judge Walker will serve as NCJFCJ secretary, treasurer, president-elect, president and immediate past-president, respectively.
Founded in 1937, the Reno-based NCJFCJ is the nation’s longest running judicial membership committee with a roster of nearly 2,000 judges and related professionals. The council aims to provide judges, courts and related agencies with the necessary knowledge and skills to improve the lives of families and children affected by the juvenile justice system and domestic violence.
“The common thread among the NCJFCJ leadership is hard work and the courage to overcome adversity as we work to improve the lives of children and families,” said the newly elected Judge Walker. “Georgia is already focused on child well being. Having national leaders enhances the state’s efforts; it gives the judiciary greater credibility and allows us to engage government agencies and foundations that work with our children and families.”
A few major NCJFCJ initiatives include:
- The Child Victims Act Model Courts Project - a network of 36 model courts that serve as mentor resources to juridictions nationwide.
- Drug Court Training and Technical Assistance Project - working with the Office of Justice Program's Juvenile Drug Court Training and Technical Assistance Project to help juvenile drug courts implement and enhance their respective programs.
- The National Center for Juvenile Justice - Founded in 1973, NCJFCJ's research division is the country's only non-profit research organization specifically dedicated to the juvenile justice system.
Her election continues a notable history of Georgia juvenile court judges chosen to join the NCJFCJ’s Executive Committee. Most recently Judge Michael Key, juvenile court judge in Troup County, Ga., ended his term as NCJFCJ president July 26, 2011.
“Like Judge Michael Key, Judge Peggy Walker has been a tireless advocate for children,” Chief Justice Carol W. Hunstein, Supreme Court of Georgia, stated in a press release. “I am proud and honored that the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges has chosen her to join the Executive Committee and become the Council’s president in 2014.”
Since 1998, Judge Walker has served as juvenile court judge in Douglas County, Ga., and a member of NCJFCJ’s Board of Trustees since 2005. She has also served as president of the Council of Juvenile Court Judges, chair of the Georgia Commission on Family Violence and a board member for the Georgia Court Appointed Special Advocates.