In January 2021, the Juvenile Welfare Board mourned the loss of long-standing Board Member, former Pinellas-Pasco State Attorney Bernie McCabe. During his 20 years of service, Mr. McCabe was a cornerstone of the JWB Board and long-serving Chair of the Board’s Finance Committee. A legend in the legal community, Mr. McCabe was steadfast in his commitment to always do what is best for children, and his litmus test was always, “Is it good for the kids?” His colleague and friend, Pinellas-Pasco Public Defender Bob Dillinger, was a fierce advocate for the underserved. He made it his life’s work to fight childhood hunger and meet basic needs of children and families to prevent them from entering deeper end services. Mr. Dillinger retired from public office, completing his 20-year term on the JWB Board in December 2020.
Both men were formidable leaders on the JWB Board, and their dedication to Pinellas County children is unparalleled. While they did not always agree, they found common ground when it came to putting children first. To honor their long-standing service, JWB’s Board created a leadership award in their names to be presented annually to a well-established leader and champion for Pinellas County children and families.