CASA Philadelphia is proud to name Frank Cervone our Champion for Children 2024. Frank has been a local and national leader in advancing policy and practice for children and families for decades. He has been a driving force helping to shape policy related to juvenile court procedural rules. He has been recognized both locally and nationally with numerous awards, including the American Bar Association Mark Hardin Award for Child Welfare Legal Scholarship and Systems Change in 2014 and the 2006 Philadelphia Bar Association Foundation Award.

Frank served at the Support Center for Child Advocates for more than 33 years and served as its Executive Director for 31 years from 1992 until his retirement on June 30, 2023. He was the longest-serving of the five executive directors to lead the organization since its 1977 inception.  During his tenure, Child Advocates experienced transformational growth and unwavering commitment to its mission: to advocate for victims of child abuse and neglect with the goal of securing safety, justice, well-being and a permanent, nurturing environment for every child.  When Frank assumed the role of Executive Director in 1992, Child Advocates had an operating budget of under $500,000 and served approximately 400 children annually. When he retired last year, Child Advocates had an operating budget of $5.1 million, an endowment of $7 million, and served more than 1,000 children and youth annually. Prior to his retirement, Frank’s leadership was recognized with a $1.5M gift to the endowment.

In addition to his work for Child Advocates, Frank founded the National Children’s Law Network and served as its co-director.  He served as the chair of the Board of the Children’s Trust Fund of Pennsylvania, served as the chair of the American Bar Association Section of Litigation Task Force on Children, and served as a member of the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania Juvenile Court Procedural Rules Committee.

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