There’s no place like hope.

“CASA Volunteers play a unique role on behalf of some of our most vulnerable children. Their commitment, vigilance, and persistence offer hope where there has been little.” -Marian Wright Edelman, Founder of the Children’s Defense Fund

CASA Best-Interest Advocacy

CASA volunteers are appointed by judges to advocate for children’s best interests. They stay with each case until it is closed and the child is in a safe, permanent home. We serve children from birth through 18 years of age.

Volunteers work with legal and child welfare professionals, educators, and service providers to ensure that judges have all the information they need to make the most well-informed decisions for each child. 

Our best-interest advocacy is driven by the guiding principle that children grow and develop best with their family of origin if that can be safely achieved. Most of the children we work with are in foster care, but some are with their families of origin. And, most children who leave foster care do so to return to their families.

We Are A Strong Team

In 1976 a Seattle juvenile court judge David W. Soukup recognized he had insufficient information to make a life-changing decision for a 3-year-old girl who had suffered from child abuse.

“These children, who had experienced abuse or neglect, needed trained volunteers speaking up in the courtroom for their best interests.”

Kittitas County’s CASA program began in 1985 under the leadership of Kittitas County Superior Court Judge JoAnne Alumbaugh.

In many counties, the CASA program is a part of the county’s juvenile court. Kittitas County’s CASA program is truly independent of the court, being managed and administered by an independent not-for-profit agency.

Our Team

The whole is much more than the sum of its part. Meet our team!

Sandra Bankston

Executive director

Sarah Read

communication & developMENT

Nicole Wachsmith

advocate coordinator

Jamie Samuelson

advocate & training coordinator

Tallin Tomter

outreach & program associate

Want to Join Our Team?

email us

Our Board of Directors

Deanna Utley

Board President

Bill Devany

Board Vice President

Brett Wachsmith

Board Treasurer

Debbie Cernick

Board Secretary

Debra Schmit

CASA Liaison

Dan Hansberry

Board Member

Laurel Gorham

Board Member

Michele Wurl

Board Member

Patrick Garmong

Board Member

Jen Sparr

Board Member

Jenn Sparr

Board Member

Jeff Meyers

Board Member

Josh Bender

Board Member

Become a Volunteer

Make a life-changing impact on a child.

We need your help to fulfill our mission and vision. Without the support of the Kittitas County community, we will not be able to provide advocacy for vulnerable children.

Apply Now