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Emma M. Hetherington

Emma M. Hetherington

Clinic Director

B.A., Emory University
J.D., University of Georgia

Emma Hetherington is a clinical associate professor and the director of the CEASE Clinic. Hetherington was charged with the creation of the clinic in January 2016, and since that time the clinic has served more than 200 survivors of child sexual abuse and exploitation.

Hetherington is certified as a child welfare law specialist by the National Association of Counsel for Children, and she has represented hundreds of children in juvenile court dependency proceedings who have experienced child abuse and neglect, with a specialized focus on youth ages 14 and up, most of whom have been sexually abused or exploited. Hetherington has served as faculty in several national and statewide conferences on child welfare, such as the National Child Welfare, Juvenile and Family Law Conference. She has served as an expert for the Georgia General Assembly, providing testimony on proposed legislation directly affecting survivors of child sexual abuse and exploitation and has appeared in local, state and national media, including USA Today.

Hetherington serves on Georgia’s Sexual Assault, Child Abuse and Human Trafficking State Expert Committee and is a member of the Criminal Justice Coordinating Council’s Georgia Statewide Human Trafficking Task Force, where she serves on the Keeping At-Risk Youth Safe and Survivors Supported and Protected work groups. Hetherington provides legal consulting services to attorneys and advocates nationwide on matters involving child sexual abuse and exploitation, and she has consulted in several high-profile cases on behalf of survivors of institutional child sexual abuse. Her research focuses on the rights of survivors of child sexual abuse and the commercial and sexual exploitation of children (CSEC), therapeutic jurisprudence, and quality interdisciplinary legal representation of children.

Before joining the law school’s faculty, Hetherington was the managing attorney for the Georgia Law Center for the Homeless and a senior child advocate attorney for the DeKalb County Child Advocacy Center. She earned her bachelor’s degree from Emory University and her Juris Doctor cum laude from Georgia Law. Prior to her work as a lawyer, Hetherington taught special education at the Emory Autism Center, where she provided educational and therapeutic services to individuals with autism and their families.