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Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Judge Peter Sakai elected to National Board of Trustees

Judge Peter Sakai (photo) Elected to Board of Trustees of National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges

Judge Peter Sakai, Presiding Judge of the 225th District Court in San Antonio, Texas, was elected to the Board of Trustees of the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges (NCJFCJ) during the organization’s 74th Annual Conference held July 24-27, 2011, in New York, N.Y.

Judge Sakai has served on the bench since 1989 as an Associate Judge in the 289th District Court (Juvenile Court) and for eleven years, he served as an Associate Judge, presiding in the Bexar County Children’s Court (Dependency Court). He as also worked in private practice and for the Bexar County District Attorney’s Office. Through Judge Sakai’s leadership, adoptions of foster children in Bexar County increased nearly 1000% from 1995 to 2005.

A graduate of the University of Texas School of Law, Judge Sakai developed the Bexar County Family Drug Court and the nationally recognized the Bexar County Children’s Court (Courtroom 21) which has been recognized for its technology and court design specially for children’s cases involving abuse and neglect. He currently serves on the Public-Private Partnership Advisory Committee on Foster Care Redesign for the State of Texas.

Judge Sakai has received numerous honors and awards, including the 2008 Arthur O’Krent Humanitarian Award; the 2008 Texas Trailblazer for Youth Award; the Lone Star Proud for Kids Judge of the Year at the State CASA Conference; the Congressional Angel in Adoption Award; and the 1998 CASA Judge of the Year by Child Advocates San Antonio.

In light of the current budgetary cutbacks in all levels of government and the need of the Family Law Courts to protect children, empower families and improve the system, Judge Sakai states, “For these reasons and these reasons only, I have accepted to serve on this National Board to learn, network and keep abreast of new ideas and solutions for our courts.”

Founded in 1937, the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges, based on the University of Nevada, Reno campus, is focused on improving the effectiveness of our nation’s juvenile and family courts. A leader in continuing education opportunities, research, and policy development in the field of juvenile and family justice, the nearly 2,000-member NCJFCJ is unique in providing practice-based resources to jurisdictions and communities nationwide.

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