Founder and President, Barbara Elias-Perciful, J. D., began Texas Loves Children, Inc. in 1995 to provide specialized training about child abuse issues to Dallas judges and attorneys after she recognized the severe lack of tools, research, and expertise available when handling a pro bono case to represent an abused child. Barbara had been practicing business litigation at the Dallas law firm Carrington, Coleman, Sloman & Blumenthal, L.L.P., when she took the pro bono court appointment to represent a 12-year old girl who had been methodically sexually abused by her father for years. This heartbreaking situation was made even more desperate when Barbara saw the lack of tools, research, and expertise readily available to assist judges and attorneys handling child abuse and neglect cases. So Barbara left the law firm and opened a private practice devoted exclusively to representing abused children in Texas, and then established TLC. For over 15 years, TLC has sponsored high-quality training seminars on critical legal, medical, and mental health issues for judges, attorneys, CPS workers, CASA volunteers, and law enforcement personnel.
The Child Protection Connection was started in 2004 by Texas Loves Children as the "TLC Online Center". In November 2007, the Texas Supreme Court's Permanent Judicial Commission for Children, Youth and Families selected the TLC Online Center program as one of its Texas Court Improvement Program projects for improving the court system's handling of child abuse cases. In August 2009, the American Bar Association honored TLC's Founder and President, Barbara Elias-Perciful, as the recipient of their national 2009 Child Advocacy Award. In November 2010, TLC was honored with the annual Award for Excellence in Social Innovation by the Dallas Center for Nonprofit Management for the impact of the TLC Online Center program in helping abused and neglected children, calling the online center "a novel solution to a social problem that is more effective, efficient and sustainable ... and demonstrates significant positive change around a specific social issue." The TLC Online Center program has been replicated for CA, FL, AL, and MD, and is now expanding nationally as the Child Protection Connection.