The Legal Advocate

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Office of the Child’s Representative – NITA Public Service Program

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For the second year in a row, NITA worked with the Office of the Child’s Representative (OCR), a Colorado state agency providing legal representation to children involved in the court system, for a public service program. The program took place at NITA’s headquarters in Boulder, February 21 – 23. It was led by NITA Program Director, Terre Rushton, who served as a faculty member of the program in 2017. This year, Rushton worked closely with Ashley Chase from OCR, in order to develop a customized program schedule.

This three-day program focused on skills such as: case analysis, closing arguments, witness examination, direct/cross examination, and use of exhibits. In true NITA-fashion, the attendees benefited from the learning-by-doing methodology. One attendee stated, “I really enjoyed the course and liked that it was interactive rather than a lecture format.” Another attendee found the method to be “incredibly helpful and effective.”

At the conclusion of the program, Rushton stated, “This program trained those attorneys who do some of the hardest and most important legal work in Colorado courts. The role they undertake as a representative for the child if often misunderstood. NITA worked with senior OCR attorneys to give these attorneys the confidence to use the trial skills they already had, to develop new skills, and to understand the changing role and rules of their courtrooms.”

NITA is humbled to have been able to work with OCR once again and to help aid in their mission and their values of accountability, efficiency, and empowerment, as they continue fighting for the most vulnerable population in the courts.

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NITA’s team of practicing lawyers, professors and judges from around the nation dedicates its efforts to the training and development of skilled and ethical legal advocates to improve the adversarial justice system.

NITA’s Goals are to:

  • Promote justice through effective and ethical advocacy.
  • Train and mentor lawyers to be competent and ethical advocates in pursuit of justice.
  • Develop and teach trial advocacy skills to support and promote the effective and fair administration of justice.
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