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Law and religion stars in the spotlight
By CSLR | Emory Law | May 24, 2016 12:05:00 PM

Four members of Emory's Law and Religion community are in the spotlight this month.

CSLR Senior Fellow Karen Worthington, a 1994 graduate of Emory Law, received the "Unsung Devotion to Those Most in Need Award" during the Emory Public Interest Committee's (EPIC) 15th Annual Inspiration Awards Ceremony February 8 at Emory Law.

A nationally recognized expert in children’s law, Worthington was the founding director of Emory Law’s Barton Child Law and Policy Center, which helps promote and protect the well-being of neglected, abused and court-involved children in the state of Georgia. Worthington has served on the boards of the Georgia Association of Counsel for Children, Voices for Georgia’s Children, Interfaith Children’s Movement and Georgia Court Appointed Special Advocates. In 2009, she was recognized with the Outstanding Legal Advocacy Award from the National Association of Counsel for Children. As a CSLR senior fellow, Worthington worked on the project, "The Child in Law, Religion, and Society."

Prior to joining Emory, Worthington worked with Fulton County Juvenile Court, the Juvenile Advocacy Division of the Georgia Indigent Defense Council and with the Georgia Supreme Court Child Placement Project. Worthington currently serves as an independent child welfare and juvenile justice consultant in Kula, Hawaii.

Silas W. Allard (JD/MTS, 2011) also was honored during the EPIC program, receiving the "Outstanding Commitment to Public Service Award." He has served Amnesty International, the Center for Survivors of Torture and War Trauma, ACLU of Georgia’s National Security/Immigrants’ Rights Project, and the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees in Geneva, among several other organizations. In addition, he co-chaired the 2008 EPIC Conference, Advancing the Consensus:  60 Years of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and served as editor-in-chief of the Emory International Law Review during 2009-2010.

Jenny R. Hernandez (JD/MTS, 2012), who presented Allard with his award, is featured in the current issue of Emory Lawyer magazine for her work last summer in the U.S. Department of State. Hernandez served as an intern for the Office of International Religious Freedom, which seeks to promote religious freedom worldwide. She researched documents and databases to find information about religious freedom and persecution in the Middle East and North Africa for the office's annual report on the state of religious freedom in 195 countries of the world. "Religion is always viewed as the problem in many societal issues, but why isn't religion part of the solution?" she asks in the Emory Law article.

Amos P. Davis (JD/MTS, 2010), who graduated in May 2010, tackles the challenges of religious diversity and international cooperation in an article published in theHastings International and Comparative Law Review (Vol 34, No. 1--Winter 2011).

"Conversations across boundaries -- political, cultural, or religious -- have become an inescapable reality of the modern world. These boundaries are often deeply entrenched and violently defended. The question then becomes, 'How can we broker agreement on morally charged issues if we approach those issues from different religious viewpoints?''' he writes in his article titled "International Civil Religion: Respecting Religious Diversity While Promoting International Cooperation." 

Davis currently serves as a law clerk to the Honorable Kenneth M. Hoyt of the Southern District of Texas.