In Oklahoma a Guardian Ad Litem (GAL) is an attorney appointed by the Court to investigate the circumstances surrounding a child and to make a recommendation to the Court about the best interests of the child.
A GAL is typically appointed at the request of one of the parties or by the Court on its own motion when it notices that the proceedings are "high conflict" in nature. Some attorneys focus their practice on GAL work and advertise their services, but most attorneys appointed to the role have family law practices handling divorce, paternity, guardianship and other family law matters. In Tulsa and Oklahoma Counties the Public Defender may be appointed as GAL when the parties are indigent (can't afford to pay for a GAL) and the Oklahoma County Public Defender's Office has a team of attorneys who only do GAL work.
I have served in numerous cases in Oklahoma and Cleveland County as a GAL. I see my role as being the eyes and ears of the Court able to see things that the Court may not get from the testimony during a trial.