Whitney Agopian, J.D.

Wyoming Supreme Court 2301 Capitol Avenue Cheyenne, WY

Voice: 307.777.7575
FAX: 307.777.3447
Email: wagopian@courts.state.wy.us

Overview and History

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services awarded the Wyoming Supreme Court a court grant in July 1999. The purpose of the grant is to assess and improve the juvenile court system’s process involving Wyoming’s most vulnerable population—abused and neglected children. In October 1999, the Supreme Court appointed an advisory council consisting of judges, attorneys, a representative from the Department of Family Services, a foster care alumna, and other professionals involved in the child protection system.

Legal Resource Manual

Guardians AdLitem Skills-­Based Handbook

A Handbook for Prosecutors

Parent Attorney Guidelines

A Handbook for Parent Attorneys

MDT Handbook

Handbook for Parents

Handbook for Parents Spanish

Juvenile Court Law Update 2004-2019

Justice for Children
Must order from CJP

How A Child Enters the System

A Handbook for Educators

Bear Goes to Court

A Handbook For Children

Your Rights

Neglect Hearing Checklists

The following Neglect Hearing Checklists are intended to assist judges, county attorneys, guardians ad litem, parents’ attorneys and caseworkers comply with the letter and spirit of the Federal Adoption and Safe Families Act. A long and short version of each checklist can be downloaded by clicking on the icon below. In order to provide resources that are useful to judges, attorneys and caseworkers, please provide us your comments on how we can improve the checklists. We will continually assess the need to revise the checklists based on comments received and any changes made to federal or state law.

2018-2019 Schedule

BlogTalk Radio Schedule

June 13, 2019 – A Wyoming Child and Family Services Review (CFSR) and Program Improvement Plan (PIP) Update May 9, 2019 – Discovery in Juvenile Court Proceedings April 11, 2019 – Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) Refresher April 17, 2019 – Central Registry Overview March 21, 2019 – Title IV-E Foster Care Funds Overview February 14, 2019 – Teamwork in Juvenile Court
January 10, 2019 – 2017 – 2018 Juvenile Court Case Law Update
December 13, 2018 – Dealing with Difficult People November 8, 2018 – Family First Prevention and Services Act Overview October 11, 2018 – The Role of the Parent Attorney and GAL in Case Planning

Archived BlogTalk Topics

Upcoming Training

June 25 – 27, 2019 – Wyoming’s Joint Symposium on Children and Youth – Cheyenne, Wyoming


The Wyoming Children’s Justice Project (CJP) announces the availability of scholarships for district court judges and/or attorneys who prosecute or accept court appointments to represent children or parents in child abuse and neglect (non-criminal), child in need of supervision, and termination of parental rights cases. These scholarships are intended to encourage judges and attorneys to attend national conferences that focus upon child welfare, juvenile, and family law. The scholarships may cover registration fees and reimbursement of airfare, lodging, meals and other travel expenses. Attorneys approved for scholarships must contribute at least 25% of the conference expenses, and agree to share the information learned with other attorneys and/or others working or volunteering in the juvenile court system.

Community Refresher Training

Community Refresher Juvenile Court Training

Juvenile Court Training Modules

Module 1: Overview of Juvenile Court

Module 2: Abuse and Neglect Proceedings

Module 3: Child In Need of Supervision(CHINS) Proceedings

Module 4: Delinquency Proceedings

Module 5: Multidisciplinary Team

Module 6: Confidentiality

Meeting Schedule

  • May 17, 2019 – 10:00 a.m.
  • September 13, 2019 – 10:00 a.m.
  • December 13, 2019 – 10:00 a.m.
  • March 13, 2020 – 10:00 a.m.
  • May 15, 2020 – 10:00 a.m.
  • September 11, 2020 – 10:00 a.m.
  • December 11, 2020 – 10:00 a.m.
  • March 12, 2021 – 10:00 a.m.
  • May 14, 2021 – 10:00 a.m.
  • September 10, 2021 – 10:00 a.m.
  • December 10, 2021 – 10:00 a.m.

Order Appointing Council Members


Strategic Plan


Name / Title Capacity City Term Expiration
Hon. Catherine M. Fox, Chair Justice Wyoming Supreme Court Cheyenne 06/30/2021
Kerri Bumgardner Uinta County District Court Clerk District Court Clerk Evanston 06/30/2021
Lauren Radakovich Deputy County and Prosecuting Attorney, Sweetwater County Prosecutor Green River 06/30/2021
Affie Ellis Senator, District 08 Senator Cheyenne 06/30/2020
Jeff Lamm CQI/CFSP/APSR/CFSR Lead Wyoming Department of Family Services Cheyenne 06/30/2019
Edwin Heimer Agency Administrator Wyoming Department of Family Services Cody 06/30/2020
Michelle Heinen UPLIFT, Parent Advocate Parent Advocate Cheyenne 06/30/2021
Hon. Nena R. James District Court Judge, 3rd Judicial District District Court Judge Green River 06/30/2019
Jill Kucera Senior Assistant Attorney General Attorney General or designee Cheyenne 06/30/2019
Ayana Lopez Youth Advocate Youth Advocate Cheyenne 06/30/2020
Jennifer Neely Training and ICWA Lead Wyoming Department of Family Services Cheyenne 06/30/2019
Marty Nelson Agency Administrator Wyoming Department of Family Services Cheyenne 06/30/2019
Tara Nethercott Senator, District 04 Senator Cheyenne 06/30/2020
Ryan Roden Deputy State Public Defender Wyoming State Public Defender or designee Cheyenne 06/30/2021
Hon. Thomas W. Rumpke District Court Judge District Court Judge Gillette 06/30/2019
Hon. Terri V. Smith Wind River Tribal Court Jduge Wind River Tribal Court Judge Ft. Washakie 06/30/2021
Hon. Dawnessa Snyder District Court Judge District Court Judge Rawlins 06/30/2020
Carol Tullio CASA of Laramie County Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) Cheyenne 06/30/2021
Leigh Anne Manlove District Attorney, Laramie County District Attorney Cheyenne 6/30/2021
Dan Wilde Director, GAL Program Guardian ad Litem Cheyenne 06/30/2019
Hon. Norman E. Young District Court Judge, 9th Judicial District District Court Judge Lander 06/30/2020
Lily Sharpe State Court Administrator, Ex-Officio Member Supreme Court Administrator Cheyenne 06/30/2020
Korin Schmidt Deputy Director, Ex-Officio Member Wyoming Department of Family Services Cheyenne 6/30/2020
Jennifer Davis Ex-Officio Member Wyoming Children’s Trust Fund Cheyenne 6/30/2021

Children’s Justice Project – The Golden Award

In 2008, the Wyoming Supreme Court Children’s Justice Project established the Excellence Award to recognize an individual involved in the child welfare system who has made significant contributions to the system and is dedicated to improving the lives of children and families. The award is presented each year at the Children’s Justice Conference. Nominations for the award are solicited statewide. The Award Selection Committee is comprised of past award recipients. In 2014, the Excellence Award was renamed after Justice Michael Golden (the 2014 Excellence Award recipient) and is now referred to as the Justice Michael Golden Award or the “Golden Award”.

Past Awardees:

  • 2018 Guardian ad Litem Anniversary Celebration (10 years)
  • 2017 Sandra S. Kitchen
  • 2016 John M. Burman
  • 2015 Judge Steven Cranfill
  • 2014 Justice Michael Golden
  • 2012 Brenden McKinney
  • 2011 Jean Day
  • 2010 Rick Robb
  • 2009 Stacey Obrecht
  • 2008 Dan Wilde