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Social Services Group

The Social Services Group consists of three units.

Child Welfare Unit

The Child Welfare Unit represents the Department of Human Services (DHS). DHS is the child welfare agency responsible for providing safe and permanent solutions for children with at-risk behaviors or who are the subject of emotional, sexual, and physical abuse or neglect. The Child Welfare Unit consists of two divisions:

  • Litigation & Appeals
  • Administration & Specialty Practice

The Litigation & Appeals Division is the largest division consisting of 35-40 attorneys that represent DHS in Family Court throughout the various phases of litigation. The attorneys litigate cases involving youth that are the subject of a dependency petition. These attorneys consult with DHS on the filing of a dependency petition as well as represent DHS during the shelter care, adjudicatory, and review hearing phases of litigation. Their representation continues until termination of parental rights.

The Administration & Specialty Practice Division is separated into three distinct sections.

  • In the Adoptions section, attorneys litigate cases in review hearings where parents have already had their rights terminated and the youth are awaiting adoption.
  • The Juvenile Justice/Older Youth section is comprised of attorneys that represent DHS in dependency hearings in courtrooms that are specially designated to address:
    • Minor victims of sex trafficking who require specialized trauma-informed treatment in the least restrictive manner.
    • Youth who have committed delinquent acts but are also dependent.
    • Youth who will transition into adulthood.
  • The Administration Appeals & Solicitor Review section is comprised of attorneys who appear before an Administrative Law Judge at the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services Bureau of Hearings and Appeals (BHA) on behalf of DHS in hearings that involve an appeal from an indicated child abuse report.

Leadership

Karen Fortune, (she/her/hers)
Chief Deputy City Solicitor
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Jon Houlon
Chief Deputy City Solicitor
More +
Name Job title Phone #
Robert Aversa Deputy City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5020
Jeri Behrman Deputy City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5128
Andrew Bergmann Deputy City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5147
Laura Bonnington Legal Assistant Supervisor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5153
ReVae Boyd Assistant City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5057
Michael Brenner Legal Assistant
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5284
Angela Bright Legal Assistant Supervisor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5161
Sharleetha Brown Data Services Support Clerk
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 686-5136
Lisa Bryant -Nelson Legal Assistant Supervisor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5158
Jean Carn-Wolfe Deputy City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5208
Patricia Carroll, (she/her/hers) Legal Assistant
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5152
Jacqueline Coelho Senior Attorney
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5120
Thomas Cola Legal Assistant Supervisor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5156
Shelby Collier, (she/her/hers) Deputy City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5174
Rosalind Crews Legal Assistant
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5195
Anne Cunningham, (she/her/hers) Deputy City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5425
Jasmine Daniels Assistant City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5230
Alyzabeth Davis, (she/her/hers) Assistant City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5168
Emma Dickson LSI
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-0017
Darlene Dool, (she/her/hers) Assistant City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
Mariah Dreher, (she/her/hers) Legal Assistant
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5138
Ensume Dunor LSI
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-2999
Lakeisha Fields Deputy City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5287
Paola Figueroa Assistant City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-8457
Patricia Fingeroff Senior Legal Assistant
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5165
Elizabeth Fleeger Legal Assistant Supervisor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5177
Armon Fouladi, (he/him/his) Assistant City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-3139
Patrick Gallagher, (he/him/his) Legal Assistant
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5221
John Gambescia Senior Attorney
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5214
Luisa Garcia Deputy City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 686-5188
Jasroop Gill-Gakhal Deputy City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 832-2101
Samika Glenn Legal Assistant
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5155
Daniel G. Gordon Assistant City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-8457
Danielle Guiteras Deputy City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5187
Rachel Hantgan McHale Senior Attorney
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5122
Conor Harrington, (he/him/his) Assistant City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5134
A. Bennette Harrison, (she/her/hers) Divisional Deputy City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5149
Pernell Jackson, (he/him/his) Assistant City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5123
Michael Joyce Senior Attorney
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5090
Antonia Karasavas LSI
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-8453
Kathleen Kim, (she/her/hers) Senior Attorney
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5143
Daria Kowalski LSI
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-3587
Joseph Lewis LSI
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5253
Erin Maloney Deputy City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-0369
Kira Meibos, (she/her/hers) Deputy City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5189
Meagan Mirtenbaum Divisional Deputy City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5091
Michael Mon Deputy City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 832-2126
Peter Moran Legal Assistant
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5225
Kathryn Morris Assistant City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5144
Amanda Morrison LSI
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5150
Eric Moyer Data Services Supp Clerk
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5197
Amanda Muscavage Assistant City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-8454
Courtney Norella Divisional Deputy City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5181
Schaundra Oliver Divisional Deputy City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5142
Erik Orvik, (he/him/his) Assistant City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5127
Amber Owens, (she/her/hers) Deputy City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5215
Lauren Realberg Senior Attorney
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5133
Jessica Rodriguez, (she/her) Deputy City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 832-2110
Ishika Sachdeva LSI
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-3588
Cynthia Schneider Senior Attorney
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5137
Raymond Sheriff LSI
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5223
Sterling Sims LSI
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-0018
Vincent Smith Legal Assistant
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5151
Jacqueline Stolzenberg, (she/her/hers) Assistant City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5215
Sheree Strauss Legal Assistant
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-3587
Shelby Tana Assistant City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5174
Ariel Torres, (she/her/hers) Deputy City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5432
Ryan Trott, (he/him/his) Assistant City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5410
Ashley Turner Legal Assistant
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5194
Kiana Walton Office Clerk
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5135
Bridget Warner, (she/her) Divisional Deputy City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 832-2103
Arrin Weatherbe Office Clerk
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5124
Jasmine Weiss Deputy City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-8455
Lorene Whiting Senior Legal Assistant
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5160
Lorene Withers Senior Legal Assistant
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5160
Afershe Woodson LSI
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5418
Angela Yancey Deputy City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5213
Melissa Zillhardt, (she/her/hers) Assistant City Solicitor
Child Welfare Unit
(215) 683-5375
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Health & Adult Services Unit

The Health & Adult Services Unit (HAS) represents the Department of Public Health, the Department of Behavioral Health & Intellectual disAbility Services, and the Office of Supportive Housing in the Court of Common Pleas and at various administrative proceedings. HAS provides counsel to the Medical Examiner and regularly attends meetings of the Institutional Review Board. Attorneys provide counsel to all clients regarding statutory and regulatory compliance. Attorneys in this unit litigate a myriad of cases, including the involuntary civil commitment of mentally ill adults and children and the involuntary civil commitment of adults with intellectual disabilities.

Additionally, this unit is responsible for litigation related to the remediation of lead in Philadelphia housing and the treatment of communicable diseases, including tuberculosis. HAS attorneys attend advisory and planning meetings geared toward assisting our clients with the effective provision of social services and are responsible for the review and production of confidential treatment records consistent with a variety of state and federal laws. HAS attorneys routinely work with service providers and the public to provide information on access points for City services. Also, the unit provides training to assist individuals on navigating City health and other critical services.

Leadership

Lynda Moore
Chief Deputy City Solicitor
More +
Name Job title Phone #
Michelle Conner Deputy City Solicitor
Health & Adult Services Unit
(215) 683-5462
Vernette Dow Divisional Deputy City Solicitor
Health & Adult Services Unit
(215) 683-5218
Dean Erlick Senior Attorney
Health & Adult Services Unit
(215) 683-5289
Harland Geer Senior Legal Assistant
Health & Adult Services Unit
(215) 683-5401
Paul Gianfrancesco Senior Attorney
Health & Adult Services Unit
(215) 683-5216
Lauren Lane, (she/her/hers) Legal Assistant
Health & Adult Services Unit
(215) 683-5396
Melanie Levin Acting Chief Deputy City Solicitor
Health & Adult Services Unit
(215) 683-5206
Mathieu O'Brien Assistant City Solicitor
Health & Adult Services Unit
(215) 683-5080
Brian Zesdorn Data Services Support Clerk
Health & Adult Services Unit
(215) 683-5220
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