Women’s History Month: AAFS Celebrates Carol E. Henderson, BA, JD – 2008-2009 AAFS President

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Source:  Nancy Jackson, AAFS Director of Development and Accreditation

As National Women’s History Month comes to a close, we honor our sixth female AAFS President and the first female AAFS President from the Jurisprudence Section. The interaction of law and science is the nexus that creates the forensic science disciplines within the world of science. The law provides the forum for science to assist in the search for the truth and advance the cause of justice. Our sixth female AAFS President exemplifies this essential alliance between the law and science and has been an innovator in developing resources for the legal and scientific communities.


Carol E. Henderson, BA, JD

2008-2009 AAFS President

 After receiving her Bachelor of Arts from the University of Florida, Carol Henderson received her Juris Doctor from George Washington University in 1980.  She began her legal career as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in Washington, D.C. After working as a senior litigation associate in a large corporate firm in Miami, she joined the faculty of Nova Southeastern University and later joined the faculty of the Stetson University College of Law.

In 2003, Prof. Henderson founded the National Clearinghouse for Science, Technology and the Law (NCSTL) at Stetson University College of Law. NCSTL was developed to foster communication between the scientific, technological and legal communities, providing comprehensive scientific, technological and legal information to promote justice based on sound science and technology. Designed to educate and share information with scientists, legal professionals, law enforcement, academics, and the public, NCSTL provides a variety of educational and training resources. In 2015, with a grant from the Department of Justice’s Bureau of Justice Assistance, NCSTL expanded its live seminars and webinars educating death penalty litigators, both prosecution and defense, in forensic science. Since its inception, NCSTL has trained more than 14,500 legal and scientific professionals and has the only comprehensive searchable database of science, technology, and law in the world.

Professor Henderson was accepted into the Jurisprudence Section of the Academy in 1984 and served in various section and Academy positions, including AAFS President from 2008 to 2009.  She currently serves on the AAFS International Affairs Committee, the FSF Think Tank, and as a liaison between AAFS and the American Bar Association’s Science & Technology Law Section. Professor Henderson also serves as the Co-Chair of the Life & Physical Sciences Division, ABA Science & Technology Law Section, is a member of the ABA Judicial Division’s Forensic Science Committee and is the Deputy Editor-in-Chief of The Sci Tech Lawyer.

Recognized as an international authority on forensic science and law, Professor Henderson has written and edited more than 90 books, book chapters and articles, including the Encyclopedia of Forensic and Legal Medicine (2005), which received the Minty Prize and awards from the British Medical Association. She co-edited The Future of Evidence: How Science and Technology Will Change The Practice of Law, published by the American Bar Association (ABA) in 2011 and Scientific Review: Admissibility and Use of Expert Evidence in the Courtroom, Monograph #9, in 2013. Her most recent publication is Sleuthing Scientific Evidence Information on the Internet, 106 J. Crim. L. and Criminology 59 (2016).  She has appeared in popular and professional media, testified before Congress, and presented hundreds of lectures and workshops worldwide to the legal, law enforcement and scientific communities.