SALT LAKE CITY - Today Governor Gary R. Herbert appointed F. Richards Smith to fill a vacancy on the Fourth District Juvenile Court bench.
"Rick's extensive experience will provide valuable insight and guidance to youth offenders who appear in the Fourth District Juvenile Court," Governor Herbert said. "His notable expertise in child welfare law will be truly valuable as we strive to serve families in Utah."
"I am honored and humbled by the invitation to serve on the court," Smith said. "As I strived to do throughout much of my professional career, I am passionate about helping youth improve their lives and understand the positive roles they can play in society to reach their potential."
Smith has served as director of the Office of Guardian ad Litem and Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) since 2007. Prior to taking on the role of director, Smith was an attorney for the office. Previous to that, he worked as an attorney for Howard, Lewis & Petersen, having earned his law degree from J. Reuben Clark Law School at Brigham Young University.
"I feel strongly about the value of young people and lifting them and their families," Smith said. "My goal is to strengthen families in a way that builds this great State."
Smith's professional service is extensive. He is currently on the Children's Justice Advisory Board, the Standing Committee on Children and Family Law for the Utah Judicial Council, the Statewide Court Improvement Program, and the chair of the Child Fatality Review Committee. He was named the Child Advocate of the Year in 2004 by the Utah County Abuse Council, and was on the Neighborhood Housing Services of Provo's Board of Directors. He has worked for Governor Huntsman's Child and Family Cabinet Council and Lt. Governor Bell's Child Sexual Abuse Workgroup.