Marla Spindel

Co-Founder and Executive Director

[email protected]

Marla Spindel is the co-founder and Executive Director of DC KinCare Alliance.  Prior to starting DC Kincare Alliance, Ms. Spindel co-founded the DC Volunteer Lawyers Project (“DCVLP”), where she managed its Child Advocacy Practice for ten years and then acted as Special Counsel, focusing on national and DC child welfare policy.  She currently serves on DCVLP’s Advisory Board. Ms. Spindel’s advocacy work at DCVLP led her to establish the DC Kincare Alliance to support relatives who care for at-risk DC children by providing education, legal representation, and advocacy. She has practiced family law in DC for more than 15 years, which includes appointment to the DC Superior Court’s Counsel for Child Abuse and Neglect Attorney Panel, serving on the Court’s Domestic Relations Branch Subcommittee, and advocating for and assisting the Court with drafting the Practice Standards for Guardians Ad Litem in Custody and Related Consolidated Cases and the DC Superior Court’s Handbook for Self-Represented Litigants.  Ms. Spindel presented on kinship issues at the Child Welfare League of America’s 2018 and 2019 Annual Conferences and co-authored an article on kinship diversion in Grandfamilies:  The Contemporary Journal of Research, Practice and Policy (see “Kinship Diversion in the District of Columbia:  A Review of Local Practice to Inform National Policy,” available at  She also has authored numerous relevant white papers, including THE CIVIL GIDEON: The Case for a Civil Right to Counsel.  She is a certified mediator.  Most recently, Ms. Spindel was instrumental in advocating for legislation to expand the DC Standby Guardianship Law to include adverse immigration action and COVID-19 as a triggering event, as well as broaden eligibility for the DC Grandparent Caregiver Program subsidy to include aunts, uncles, cousins, siblings, and godparents.  In 2020, Ms. Spindel was chosen as one of 100 Child Welfare League of America Champions for Children.  She earned a J.D., with honors, from George Washington University Law School and a B.A. in Government from Cornell University.