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Deborah Canty was born in Philadelphia, PA.  She credits her character, passion, and discovery of her purpose to the experiences and lessons she learned as the eldest child of missionary parents living in West Africa.  

Deborah learned fortitude and resilience skills from the Liberians as seen in the example of President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf. Her parents who were leaders exposed her to strong management and leadership skills. Her family returned to Philadelphia, PA when she was 12 where she attended and graduated from the Philadelphia Public School System.

In her career as an attorney both in the corporate arena and for DHS, Deborah has developed relationships, established rapport and built credibility with judges, prosecutors, defense attorneys, child advocates, social workers, and court personnel alike.

                                                                                                                       (photo by ronfin44 Philadelphia City Hall)

Deborah obtained her undergraduate degree in Business Administration from Messiah College. She immediately began advocating for the citizens of Philadelphia while working for Haddington Case Management Unit, the Association for Independent Growth and Tabor Children’s Services, among others.

   Deborah received her Master’s in Social Work from the University of Pennsylvania



Deborah studied abroad while attending Temple. Her time in Rome, Italy, and Tokyo, Japan deepened  Deborah’s appreciation for and understanding of the United States’ legal system. Deborah launched her legal career as a summer law clerk in Philadelphia’s Family Court Juvenile Division. Upon graduation from law school, Deborah joined the law firm of Montgomery, McCracken, Walker, & Rhoads, LLP.  She subsequently started working with Ikon Office Solutions (now Ricoh America), where she demonstrated leadership and a commitment to service by establishing the company’s first pro-bono program.

 In 2007, Deborah joined the City of Philadelphia’s Law Department.Deborah represented the Philadelphia’s Department of Human Services (DHS) and advocated on behalf of children and families in the City of Philadelphia.


During her nine years in the Law Department, Deborah worked her way through the ranks from an Assistant City Solicitor, to Deputy City Solicitor, and then Divisional Deputy City Solicitor.


In each role, she sought to ensure the safety and well-being of Philadelphia’s most vulnerable citizens, its children, while balancing the legislative mandate to preserve the unity of the family whenever possible.

Deborah also advocated on behalf of youth in Crossover Court, which offers children a second chance by providing the opportunity to have their records expunged within two years of completing the program.



During her last four years at DHS, Deborah worked in the court responsible for underage victims of human trafficking known as WRAP Court (Working to Restore Adolescent's Power).


Currently, Deborah is the Director of Quality Assurance and Corporate Compliance for ChildFirst Services Inc. (ChildFirst). The mission of ChildFirst is to provide individually based quality services to children and youth.  ChildFirst provided group homes for youth placed with DHS. http://http//

Integrity - always serving with sincerity, trustworthiness, and honesty

Impartiality - ensuring fair and equal treatment of all

Innovative - embracing new creative solutions to reform and solve problems

Industrious - always hard working, diligent and dedicated

She  has a reputation for being a woman of integrity and a relentless, hard-working, a fair-minded attorney with a genuine passion and respect for both the law and those whom she serves.

Website Design: Michele Downes: ShirleySolutions
The Committee to Elect Deborah Canty
Robben Washington, Treasurer
Pastor Kenneth Staley
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