Office of Communications and Public Affairs
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Circuit Courts in Maryland Celebrate National Adoption Day
(ANNAPOLIS, Md. – November 13, 2015) Judges in several of Maryland’s Circuit Courts will preside over adoption celebrations throughout the week leading up to and including National Adoption Day, which is Saturday, November 21, 2015.
Since National Adoption Day was established in 2000, nearly 54,500 children nationwide have had their adoptions finalized during adoption day events. Still, more than 100,000 children in the United States remain in foster care awaiting permanent placements with loving families.
National Adoption Day activities in Maryland Circuit Courts include the following:
Anne Arundel County
The Circuit Court for Anne Arundel County will host a National Adoption Day event on Thursday, November 19, at 9 a.m. Judge Glenn L. Klavans will preside over the adoptions in Courtroom 4C. The children being adopted range in age from 9 months to 13 years old. This event is the result of court staff, attorneys, and local adoption agencies coming together to celebrate children finding their forever families. Following the adoption proceedings, there will be light refreshments in the fourth floor gallery. Local adoption agencies will be on hand to provide information about their services. For further information, please contact Robin Cummings, Assistant Chief Deputy Clerk, at 410-222-1895 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Prince George’s County
Over the past year, the adoptions of children, including those who were in foster care in the county, by approximately 40 families have been finalized. The Circuit Court for Prince George’s County will celebrate past and present adoptive families in a ceremony on Thursday, November 19, in the Upper Marlboro courthouse. The Hon. Sheila R. Tillerson Adams, Administrative Judge for the Seventh Judicial Circuit, Judge Beverly J. Woodard, an adoptive parent herself, Judge Larnzell Martin, Jr., and Judge Cathy H. Serrette will preside over the adoption ceremony. The speakers for the event are Iona Harrison, an adoptive mother, and Amanda Barrett, an international adoptee who successfully searched for her biological family. In addition, there will be a reception and a presentation of gifts to the children and families. The ceremony will begin at 10:30 a.m. in Courtroom M3400. For more information, please contact Angela Means, Circuit Court Adoption Coordinator, at 301-780-8033. Members of the media who want to cover the event should contact Sondra D. Battle, Court Administrator, at 301-780-8070.
On Friday, November 20, Judge Richard E. Jordan, Judge Cynthia Callahan, Judge Cheryl A. McCally, Judge Anne K. Albright, and Judge Joan E. Ryon will preside over the adoptions of 14 children by forever families. The ceremonies will begin at 3 p.m. in Courtroom 3E of the Montgomery County Circuit Court’s North Tower. The newly adopted children will receive personalized gifts. After the adoptions are finalized, the new families will celebrate together at a reception hosted by the Montgomery County Department of Health and Human Services featuring food and activities for the children and their families, including a face painter, a balloon artist, and a DJ. For more information, please contact Lili Khozeimeh, Circuit Court Adoption Coordinator, at 240-777-9119.
In this landmark tenth year of celebration in Baltimore City, approximately 25 children will become members of their new families at the same time on Saturday, November 21. Baltimore Circuit Administrative Judge W. Michel Pierson, Judge Robert B. Kershaw, and Judge Yvette M. Bryant will preside jointly over the adoptions beginning at 10 a.m. in the Ceremonial Courtroom in the Clarence M. Mitchell, Jr., Courthouse, 100 N. Calvert St., Baltimore. Following the ceremony, the new families will celebrate together during a reception featuring face painters, a balloon artist, and arts and crafts activities. The newly adopted children will receive personalized gift bags; their siblings will receive gifts as well. Baltimore’s event has been coordinated with the Bar Association of Baltimore City, with generous and kind support from the Baltimore City Department of Social Services.
The Baltimore County Circuit Court will celebrate National Adoption Day by finalizing up to 12 adoptions on Saturday, November 21, beginning at 11 a.m. in the Old Courthouse Ceremonial Courtroom, 400 Washington Ave., Towson. Judge Sherrie R. Bailey will preside and Baltimore County Bar Association (BCBA) President-Elect Robert J. Thompson will welcome families and guests. The Baltimore Gamer Symphony Orchestra will perform as families and their guests arrive. After the ceremony, the new families will join members of the bench and bar, social workers, other staff, and volunteers for a luncheon provided by the Baltimore County Department of Social Services featuring music, activities, and a balloon artist. Portraits of the new families will be taken by a local photographer and provided free of charge to the families upon their request after the event.
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MEDIA CONTACT: For more information about any of these events, call the Maryland Judiciary Office of Communications and Public Affairs, 410-260-1488.