Casa Las Vegas History

The History of the National CASA/GAL Movement by Dates

  • 1977: Judge Soukup starts the first CASA/GAL program in Seattle (King County), Washington.
  • 1977: A National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges committee endorses the program as a model for safeguarding a child’s rights to a safe and permanent family.
  • 1978: Judge John F. Mendoza of Nevada suggests the term “court-appointed special advocate” to designate the lay court-appointed volunteers.
  • 1982: The first Annual CASA Conference is held in Nevada, and participants vote to establish the National CASA Association.
  • 1982: The number of CASA/GAL programs reaches 88.
  • 1983: Twenty-nine states have CASA/GAL programs.
  • 1984: The National CASA Association forms in Seattle.
  • 1984: National CASA enters into its first cooperative agreement with the U.S. Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, which remains our largest funder to date.
  • 1985: President Ronald Reagan presents National CASA with the President’s Volunteer Action Award.
  • 1985: 10,000 children served annually through 159 programs
  • 1987: 40,000 children served by 12,000 volunteers in 271 local programs and 44 states
  • 1988: Tribal courts first begin CASA programs through grants to five tribes.
  • 1989: National CASA becomes Kappa Alpha Theta Foundation’s national charity.
  • 1990: 72,000 children served by 17,000 volunteers in 412 program offices
  • 1991: The CASA program is first authorized in the Victims of Child Abuse Act.
  • 1995: 129,000 children served by 38,000 volunteers in 642 program offices
  • 1996: Congress amends the Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act to allow the required GAL to be an attorney or CASA volunteer.
  • 1997: The National Bar Association endorses CASA volunteer advocacy.
  • 2000: 174,000 children served by 47,000 volunteers in 900 program offices
  • 2003: National CASA’s partnership with Jewelers for Children, our largest private funder, begins.
  • 2007: CASA network reaches 2 million children served since inception.
  • 2015: National CASA begins a partnership with Akerman LLP, a top law firm.
  • 2016: National CASA Association opens an office in Washington, D.C.