Loretta Frederick JD

Loretta Frederick serves as Senior Legal and Policy Advisor for the Battered Women's Justice Project, a national resource center on the civil and criminal legal systems' response to domestic violence. The primary focus of her work since 2010 has been on designing family court systems for the effective handling of child custody cases involving domestic abuse. She co-developed the widely-recognized SAFeR approach to that work. Loretta is a past chair of the Minnesota State Bar Association's Family Law Section and of its Domestic Abuse Committee.

Since 1978 when Loretta began her work as an attorney representing victims of domestic violence for Southern Minnesota Regional Legal Services and co-founding the Women’s Resource Center of Winona, she has worked to improve the legal system’s response to domestic violence. Her efforts have involved legal consultation, training and assistance with litigation and policy development on domestic violence issues in the U.S. and internationally. She founded and directed the Battered Women’s Legal Advocacy Project (now “Standpoint”) which provides such help to Minnesota advocates and legal system professionals. She served on the Minnesota Supreme Court’s Gender Fairness Implementation Committee and on the faculties of Minnesota's Judicial College and its Family Law for the Judiciary educational programs. She serves on the faculty for the National Judicial Institute on Domestic Violence and over the past forty years has designed curricula for and given presentations at hundreds of educational sessions worldwide for prosecutors, judges, attorneys, advocates, guardians ad litem, custody evaluators, law enforcement officers, and police administrators.

Ms. Frederick assisted in drafting the Model State Code on Domestic and Family Violence in conjunction with the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges (NCJFCJ). Loretta was a participant in policy development efforts at the nation’s first conference (sponsored by the National Resource Center on Child Custody and Child Protection of NCJFCJ) of child protection/family preservation workers and domestic violence advocates. She served for three years as a consultant for the U.S. Marine Corps on the development of its coordinated community response to domestic violence. In 2009 Loretta helped guide the seminal Wingspread conference on child custody in domestic violence cases which was co-sponsored by the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts and the NCJFJC.

Loretta’s work has included assisting governments and non-governmental organizations to improve their legal system’s handling of domestic violence cases in many regions around the world including Central Asia, Eastern and Western Europe, Nepal and the Balkans. She was a participant and trainer at the NGO conference at the U.N. Conference on Women, Beijing, China in 1995. In 2011, Loretta went to China to serve as faculty for an institute on Enhancing Judicial Skills in Domestic Violence Cases and taught Judicial Faculty Development, both sponsored by the American Bar Association’s Rule of Law Initiative in China.