Professor Henning joined the faculty of the Georgetown Law Center in 1995 as a Stuart-Stiller Fellow in the Criminal and Juvenile Justice Clinics. As a Fellow she represented adults and children in the D.C. Superior Court, while supervising law students in the Juvenile Justice Clinic. In 1997, Professor Henning joined the staff of the Public Defender Service (PDS) for the District of Columbia where she continued to represent clients and helped to organize a Juvenile Unit designed to meet the multi-disciplinary needs of children in the juvenile justice system. Professor Henning served as Lead Attorney for the Juvenile Unit from 1998 until she left the Public Defender Service to return to Georgetown in 2001. As lead attorney, she represented juveniles in serious cases, supervised and trained new PDS attorneys, and coordinated and conducted training for court-appointed attorneys representing juveniles. 

Professor Henning has been active in local, regional and national juvenile justice reform, serving as Director of the Mid-Atlantic Juvenile Defender Center (MAJDC), President of the Board of Directors for the Center for Children’s Law and Policy, and on local D.C. Superior Court committees such as the Delinquency Working Group and the Family Court Training Committee. Professor Henning has also served as an expert consultant to a number of state and federal agencies, including the US Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division.

Kris Henning worked closely with the Juvenile Indigent Defense Action Network to develop the Juvenile Training Immersion Program (JTIP), a national training curriculum for juvenile defense attorneys. She is a certified JTIP trainer and has organized numerous trainings for practicing juvenile defense attorneys, including the JTIP Summer Academy, an annual one week intensive training program for juvenile defense attorneys hosted at Georgetown Law in partnership with the National Juvenile Defender Center (NJDC), the DC Juvenile Panel Trial Practice Group (a monthly training program for DC CJA bar attorneys), and trainings in rural areas throughout the Mid-Atlantic region. She is also often invited to train juvenile defenders throughout the country.

She has published a number of law review articles on race and the juvenile justice system, the role of child’s counsel and the role of parents in delinquency cases, confidentiality in juvenile proceedings, victims’ rights in juvenile court, and parental consent in the Fourth Amendment context.  She is also a lead contributor to the Juvenile Law and Practice chapter of the District of Columbia Bar Practice Manual, serves as the Reporter for the ABA Task Force on Standards for Dual-jurisdiction and Crossover Youth, and has served as an investigator in eight state assessments of the access to counsel and quality of representation for accused juveniles. 

In 2005, Kris was selected as a Fellow in the Emerging Leaders Program of the Duke University Terry Sanford Institute of Public Policy and the Graduate School of Business at the University of Cape Town, South Africa.  Professor Henning also traveled to Liberia in 2006 and 2007 to aid the country in juvenile justice reform and was awarded the 2008 Shanara Gilbert Award by the Clinical Section of the Association of American Law Schools in May for her commitment to social justice on behalf of children, service to the cause of clinical legal education, and an interest in international legal education.  In 2013, Professor Henning was awarded the Robert E. Shepherd, Jr. Award for Excellence in Juvenile Defense by NJDC. In 2105, she received the Henning-Mlyniec Award for Youth Justice from the DC Lawyers for Youth, was elected to American Law Institute (ALI), and was invited to serve as an Adviser to ALI’s Restatement on Children and the Law project. Henning has been a visiting professor at Yale and NYU Law Schools and holds a B.A. from Duke University, a J.D. from Yale University, and an LL.M. from Georgetown University.

Scholarship

Books

Rights, Race, and Reform: 50 Years of Child Advocacy in the Juvenile Justice System (Kristin Henning, Laura Cohen & Ellen Marrus eds., New York: Routledge 2018). [BOOK]

Book Chapters and Collected Works

Kristin Henning, Jenadee Nanini & Geoff Ward, Toward Equal Recognition, Authority, and Protection: Legal and Extra-legal Advocacy for Black Youth in the Juvenile Justice System, in Rights, Race, and Reform: 50 Years of Child Advocacy in the Juvenile Justice System 30-50 (Kristin Henning, Laura Cohen & Ellen Marrus eds., New York: Routledge 2018). [BOOK]
Kristin Henning, Randy Hertz & Hannah McElhinny, Specializing in Juvenile Defense: The D.C. Public Defender Service as a Case Study, in Rights, Race, and Reform: 50 Years of Child Advocacy in the Juvenile Justice System 114-127 (Kristin Henning, Laura Cohen & Ellen Marrus eds., New York: Routledge 2018). [BOOK]
Kristin Henning & Erin Keith, Pride and Prejudice: Juvenile Defenders for Racial Justice 50 Years after Gault, in Rights, Race, and Reform: 50 Years of Child Advocacy in the Juvenile Justice System 199-216 (Kristin Henning, Laura Cohen & Ellen Marrus eds., New York: Routledge 2018). [BOOK]

Contributions to Law Reviews and Other Scholarly Journals

Kristin Henning, The Reasonable Black Child: Race, Adolescence, and the Fourth Amendment, 67 Am. U. L. Rev. 1513-1576 (2018).
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