Annie von Gillern, JD, LISW

Annie von Gillern, JD, LISW

Area of Specialty: 

Child Focused Family Assessment (Custody Evaluations),Family Law,Special Education Law

Phone: (515) 412-5112

Annie von Gillern is dual-licensed in clinical social work (LISW) and law (JD). She has a hybrid practice focused on helping families heal from trauma and move forward in living their best lives. Annie strongly believes that children are commonly forgotten in the adversarial nature of the legal system. Their voices are powerful and should be heard and included in finding solutions for families. It is this advocacy for children and youth that defines Annie’s practice.

Annie performs Child Custody Evaluations and also operates an independent law firm where she focuses on representing children in high-conflict family law cases.

Annie has extensive training in trauma, domestic violence, and child development.

In addition to performing Child Custody Evaluations, Annie often acts as a Child and Family Reporter for youth whose parents are involved in family law litigation. Annie also represents children and their families in Special Education matters across the state of Iowa.

Annie completed her B.S. degree in psychology at Iowa State University and a Masters in Social Work (MSW) at University of Missouri – Columbia, focusing her research and coursework on Child Welfare and Domestic Violence. Upon completion of her MSW, Annie provided therapy to victims of domestic violence at the Family Violence Center in Des Moines as well as to school-aged youth through Central Place in the Southeast Polk School District. In addition to her clinical work, Annie worked full-time as the Social Worker/Clinical Instructor at the Middleton Center for Children’s Rights at the Drake University Legal Clinic. During her time at the Middleton Center, Annie facilitated and participated in an interdisciplinary team of lawyers, social workers, and educators, and provided instruction to law and education students in the areas of trauma, child welfare, and child development. While working in this position she attended law school and focused her coursework on children and families.

Annie is a single mother of four young children and enjoys running and yoga in her spare time.

Education

  • Drake University Law School, J.D. (2013)
  • University of Missouri – Columbia, MSW (2006)
  • Iowa State University, B.S. (2004)

Professional Memberships

  • Iowa State Bar Association – Family and Juvenile Law Section Member
  • Polk County Bar Association – Family Law Committee Member
  • Iowa Association of Collaborative Professionals
  • Association of Family and Conciliation Courts
  • National Association of Social Workers, Iowa Chapter, past Vice President
  • Young Women’s Resource Center, past Board Member, former Chair Program Committee
  • Zero to Three Safe Babies Court Team, former Community Coordinator, Stakeholder

Bar Admissions

  • State of Iowa (2014)

Presentations and Speaking Engagements

  • Working with Lawyers, Co-Author & Presenter
  • Client-Focused Collaboration: Ethics with a Side of Empathy, Co-Author & Presenter
  • Trauma 101, Co-Presenter
  • Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders, Presenter
  • Law & Order: Foster Care, Author, Presenter
  • Putting it All Together: Interdisciplinary Work in a Legal Clinic Setting, Co-Presenter
  • Get it Right! Author, Presenter
  • Building a Better Future, Presenter
  • DHS 101, Author, Presenter

Client Focus Areas

  • Child Focused Family Assessment (Custody Evaluations)
  • Collaborative Practice
  • Family Law
  • Juvenile Law
  • Guardianship/Conservatorship Law
  • Adoption Law
  • Special Education Law
  • Child and Family Reporter
  • Guardian ad Litem