Warren Binford is an internationally recognized children’s rights scholar and advocate who is the inaugural holder of the W.H. Lea Endowed Chair for Justice in Pediatric Law, Policy, and Ethics at the University of Colorado. She serves on both the law and medical school faculties at the university, and is a core faculty member in the Center for Bioethics and the Humanities. She is also the Director of Law, Policy, and Ethics at the Kempe Center on the Prevention and Treatment of Child Abuse and Neglect.

International Work

Professor Binford was selected as both a Fulbright Scholar in South Africa in 2012 where she studied the constitutionalization of children’s rights and the inaugural Fulbright Canada-Palix Foundation Distinguished Visiting Chair in Brain Science and Child and Family Health and Wellness in 2015 at the University of Calgary in Alberta, Canada, where she researched the multidisciplinary effects of child sex abuse trauma on survivors. She has provided expertise and support to Save the Children, the International Red Cross, the International Criminal Court, the Japan Red Cross, the Croatia Red Cross, and the Dutch National Rapporteur on Human Trafficking and Sexual Violence against Children, among many others. Professor Binford chaired the first study group ever appointed by the International Law Association to focus on children’s rights.

Writing & Speaking

Professor Binford has published over 60 law review articles, book chapters, essays, NGO publications, and editorials, and one children’s book, Hear My Voice/Escucha Mi Voz. She has given hundreds of presentations, both live and recorded, primarily on topics related to children’s issues, throughout the country and around the world. In addition to being a frequent guest lecturer on children’s issues, she provides expertise to both policymakers and the media, including the New York TimesThe Washington PostThe New YorkerThe Wall Street JournalThe AtlanticUSA Todaythe Chronicle of Higher Education, BBC, the Associated Press, NPR, CNN, MSNBC, CBC, France 24, Al-Jazeera, Pod Save America, VICE, and many others.

Professional History

Prior to joining the University of Colorado, Professor Binford was Professor of Law and Director of the Clinical Law Program for 16 years at Willamette University. While there, she founded the Child and Family Advocacy Clinic, which provided pro bono legal support to children and families in crisis, as well as guidance on legislation and public policy.  

Professor Binford has been admitted to practice law in California, Oregon, the United States District Court, Eastern and Northern Districts of California, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, and the U.S. Supreme Court. She served as a Special Assistant Attorney General for the State of Oregon from 2006-2011.

Education & Recognitions

She holds a J.D. from Harvard Law School and a B.A., summa cum laude with distinction, and an Ed.M. from Boston University. She is a member of Phi Beta Kappa, an American Bar Foundation Fellow, a 2020 Woman of Influence, and the recipient of the Hans A. Linde Award.  

Additional Information

Professor Binford has served as a licensed foster parent, Court Appointed Special Advocate for abused and neglected children, and inner-city teacher in South Central Los Angeles, Boston, and London. 

Professor Binford is an avid snowboarder, hiker, backpacker, and mountain climber who enjoys spending time with her family and friends.