13.A. Judge Ann Celine Walsh - Overview of the Family Violence Coordinating Council
Judge Ann Celine Walsh, Presiding Judge of the Speciality and Juvenile Courts Division and
Chair of the Family Violence Coordinating Council for the 18th Judicial Circuit Court, was
joined by Diana Hightower, Coordinator of the Family Violence Coordinating Council.
Together, they presented to the Committee an overview of the Family Violence Coordinating
Council (FVCC). Judge Walsh began by thanking the Committee members for all of the good
work that they do on behalf of the Courts. She then went on to state that she has been the Chair
of the FVCC for five years and offered a brief background on the Council.
At this time, Diana Hightower shared with the Committee some of the objectives of the FVCC.
She began by stating that the FVCC is funded by a grant through the Illinois Criminal Justice
Information Authority (ICJIA) and is a collaboration of the courts, law enforcements, advocacy
groups and other organizations which seek to improve the system's response to domestic
violence. The goals of the FVCC are to provide a forum to improve institutional, professional
and community response to family violence including child abuse, elder abuse and domestic
abuse. Further, the FVCC offers education and prevention as well as coordinates interventions
and services for both victims and perpetrators. The FVCC seeks to contribute to the
improvement of the legal system and the administration of justice.
There are four committees within the FVCC which include: the Steering Committee, the Courts
and Law Enforcement Committee, the Community Intervention and Education Committee and
the QR Code Committee. Coordinator Hightower went on to explain the objectives of the
Steering Committee, the Courts and Law Enforcement Committee and the Community
Intervention and Education Committee.
At this time, Judge Walsh provided an in-depth presentation of the QR Code Committee. This
Committee was launched in March of 2023 and is intended to help domestic violence victims
safely and quickly seek the resources they need. The FVCC, in collaboration with the State's
Attorney Office and the DuPage County Health Department, has created a training tool for the
more than 40 law enforcement agencies in DuPage County to implement the QR Code. Judge
Walsh's goal is to grow this initiative and encouraged the Committee members to spread the
word to others. She also asked them to reach out to her if they know of any additional contacts
that would benefit from this program.
A question and answer session followed.
No old business was offered.
No new business was offered.
With no further business, the meeting was adjourned at 8:45 AM. The next meeting is scheduled