Adult Guardianship Services (AGS) provides “Guardian of Person” services to individuals who are residents of Cuyahoga County and are deemed to be incompetent by the Cuyahoga County Probate Court. We serve both elderly individuals who have a significant problem with Dementia/Alzheimer’s Disease, as well as younger individuals with a severe mental illness, by providing legal guardians to serve as concerned, caring advocates and surrogate decision-makers. We have a contract from Cuyahoga County Probate Court to provide Guardian of Person services to indigent wards.

Although our primary mission is to provide guardianship services to indigent individuals we also provide Guardian of Person services to those who can pay for the service. As a result more indigent individuals can be served.

AGS partners include:  Cuyahoga County Probate Court, the Alcohol, Drug Addiction and Mental Health Services (ADAMHS) Board  of Cuyahoga County, Cuyahoga County Division of Senior & Adult Services, Western Reserve Area Agency on Aging, United Way of Greater Cleveland, the McGregor Foundation, and other community partners.

Read more about AGS by viewing a recent newsletter HERE.



Adult Guardianship Services was started in 1989 BY Probate Court Judge John J. Donnelly and LMM’s founder, the Reverend Dick Sering, in response to the needs of vulnerable adults in Cuyahoga County. Our original name was the Volunteer Guardianship Program, and we were first staffed by volunteers only. Initial support came from Probate Court, the Cleveland Foundation, and the County Board of Mental Health. As the program grew it became evident that some cases were too time consuming to be handled by volunteers, and paid staff were added. The hybrid model of staff and volunteer guardians continues today. We now have 19 paid staff,  100 plus volunteer guardians and volunteer attorneys, and serve approximately 600 Cuyahoga County residents on any given day.



  • Referents must complete an intake form and provide a Statement of Expert Evaluation after which time our professional staff conducts an assessment for the need for guardianship.
  • Not every incompetent person can or will receive services through AGS. The Probate Court encourages AGS to seek less restrictive alternatives to guardianship whenever possible. Guardianship should be the alternative of last resort and AGS should be the guardian of last resort.
  • Referrals for guardianship are accepted from hospitals, nursing homes, families, social service agencies, Probate Court, Adult Protective Services, attorneys, banks, or other organizations.
  • Referrals for private pay wards area also accepted and billed at an hourly basis.


Beginning in 2017, AGS will be monitoring a prioritized waiting list for all AGS referrals. Please fill out an application and AGS staff will contact to confirm placement on the waiting list.

CLICK HERE to make a guardianship referral(Intake) to AGS



Volunteers are men and women of all ages from all walks of life who have compassion, commitment, patience and a desire to help those who cannot help themselves.  Volunteers receive training, support of an attorney and 24/7 access to program staff and are matched with a ward who resides in Cuyahoga County. Primary tasks of the volunteer guardian include making monthly visits to their ward, advocating on their behalf, making life decisions including health and placement decisions for the ward and keeping the program updated.



CLICK HERE to apply to be a volunteer guardian with AGS

CLICK HERE to apply to be a volunteer attorney with AGS



The Good Samaritan Award
The Good Samaritan Award is given to a member of the community who has made a significant contribution to Adult Guardianship Services. Their actions promote and exemplify the core values of Adult Guardianship Services, including advocacy, volunteerism, justice, integrity, dignity, compassion, collaboration, shalom and the ideal of the Good Samaritan.

Recipients include:

2016- Judy Beeler
2014 - Karmen Jackson
2013 - Madison Commons
2012 - Dan Wilson
2011 - Shelda Brantley
2010 - Mary Ann Fagan
2009 - Alan D. Shankman
2008 - Audrey Keppler
2007 - Algart Health Care
2006 - Sally Siggins
2005 - Robert and Lisa Stemnock
2004 - Sharyn Davis Robinson
2003 - Ted Reklinski
2002 - LeMoyne Nesbitt

The Greg Hoshek Volunteer Guardian Award
For twelve of its first thirteen years, Greg Hoshek was a volunteer for AGS. Driving every other week to Holmes County to visit his wards, Greg was a dedicated volunteer. He said, "I love and respect old people. I love visiting my wards, taking them to lunch, and buying them the things they need. I get more out of being a guardian than I give. It makes me feel good." Greg upheld the dignity of each ward and served his wards in a spirit of empathy and selflessness. Greg was also the LMM Board liaison to AGS. His sudden death in February 2002 ended his calling as a volunteer, but his memory and contribution remains. This annual award is presented to acknowledge and recognize the outstanding contribution of a volunteer guardian to his or her ward(s) and to Adult Guardianship Services.

Recipients include:

2016-  Theresa Smith

2014 - Carolyn Anderson
2013 - Laura Palcisko
2012 - Judie Amsel

2011 - Paulette McMonagle
2010 - Mary Grace Brachat
2009 - Patricia Ross
2008 - Kathleen Bearfield
2006 - Janice Dzigiel
2005 - Albert Barnes
2004 - Barbara J. Daly
2003 - Kathryn T. Joseph
2002 - Dolores Bragg



For more information contact Jude Troha, Program Director, at 216.696.1132 x 137 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it


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