Emory Law News Center

Emory Law's Barbara Woodhouse elected to American Law Institute
By Emory University School of Law | Emory Law | October 19, 2018

Newest member of the American Law Institute :
L. Q. C. Lamar Professor of Law Barbara Bennett Woodhouse

The American Law Institute has elected thirty-one new members who will bring their expertise to ALI’s work of clarifying the law through Restatements, Principles, and Model Codes. Among them, as the only elected person from Georgia, is L. Q. C. Lamar Professor of Law Barbara Bennett Woodhouse. 

Woodhouse is among the nation’s foremost experts on children’s rights. She joined the Emory Law faculty in 2009 as the L. Q. C. Lamar Chair in Law. Her scholarship and teaching focus on child law, child welfare, comparative and international family law, adoption, and constitutional law.

From 1988 to 2001, Woodhouse was a professor of law at the University of Pennsylvania and cofounder and codirector of its Center for Children’s Policy Practice and Research. In 2001, Woodhouse became the first the David H. Levin Chair in Family Law at the University of Florida's Levin College of Law (she is currently the David H. Levin Chair Emeritus). In 2001, she founded and was director of Levin College of Law’s Center on Children and Families.

Before entering academia, Woodhouse was a litigator at the New York firm of Debevoise and Plimpton. During her academic career, she has participated in numerous appellate cases raising issues of adoption, custody and juvenile justice, and has authored or co-authored influential amicus briefs in many appellate courts, including the Supreme Court of the United States. 

Woodhouse has published more than sixteen articles and book chapters and her recent book from Princeton University Press, Hidden in Plain Sight: The Tragedy of Children’s Rights from Ben Franklin to Lionel Tate, won the American Political Science Association’s 2009 award for best book on human rights. She was named a Human Rights Hero by the ABA's Journal on Human Rights in 2005. In 2008, she gave the David C. Baum Lecture on Civil Liberties and Civil Rights at University of Illinois. She was awarded a Fernand Braudel Senior Fellowship at the European University Institute in Florence, Italy in 2007–2008. Her recent research has focused on the comparative ecology of childhood in the U.S. and Europe.  Woodhouse is an editor of the Family Court Review and Journal of Psychology, Public Policy and Law.  She was recently re-elected to a fifth three-year term on the Executive Council of the International Society for Family Law.

“ALI’s membership is known for its judgment, collective experience, and analytic ability,” said ALI President David F. Levi. “I am pleased to welcome this extraordinary group of new members who will bring their talent, wisdom, and dedication to the important work of the Institute.”

Visit the Newly Elected Members Page to view biographical sketches of the new members.