Julie K. Waterstone
Associate Dean for Experiential Learning, Director of the Children's Rights Clinic and Clinical Professor of Law
B.A., with honors, Law and Society, 1995, University of California, Santa Barbara; J.D., 2000, Northwestern University; Member, California and Mississippi State Bars
Phone: (213) 738-5727
Julie Waterstone discovered her passion for child advocacy as a law student working with children in the delinquency system through the Children and Family Justice Center of Northwestern's Bluhm Legal Clinic. Through her clinical experience, she participated in community outreach efforts and also served as a student instructor in the Street Law program.
"I take such pride in watching my students make their first argument or appearance as a student lawyer. It is even more rewarding to see their sense of accomplishment as they realize that they have the tools necessary to be a good lawyer."
After graduation, Dean Waterstone returned to her native Southern California and spent the next three years working as a civil litigator at Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy in Los Angeles to hone her litigation skills. But it was her pro bono work during that time that brought her the most satisfaction. With a desire to pursue public interest law full time, she accepted a position with the Civil Legal Clinic at the University of Mississippi School of Law. There, as a clinical professor, she created and developed the Child Advocacy Clinic, supervised students and taught the accompanying clinic seminar. Three years later, she once again returned to Los Angeles where she joined Public Counsel as a staff attorney, litigating special education cases and training lawyers and law students as pro bono special education advocates.
In Fall 2007, Dean Waterstone was appointed to the Southwestern faculty to establish and direct the law school's new Children's Rights Clinic, and she was named Associate Dean for Experiential Learning in 2014. She works closely with students to hone their lawyering skills in the context of live client representation as they represent youth in special education and school discipline cases. Through their representation, the law students gain experience in interviewing, counseling, negotiating, researching, writing, oral advocacy and trial practice. In addition to the practical experience, she wants the program to "ignite in students the same fire for public interest law and pro bono work" that prompted her to get into the field. "I take such pride in watching my students make their first argument or appearance as a student lawyer," she says. "It is even more rewarding to see their sense of accomplishment as they realize that they have the tools necessary to be a good lawyer."
Dean Waterstone also maintains an active role in the community. She is a member of the Dignity in Schools Campaign, on the advisory board of DREAMS and has served on a number of other boards, including the Executive Board of the Mississippi chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union, the Advisory Board of the Southern Juvenile Defender Center and the Legal Advisory Committee of the Anti-Defamation League of Los Angeles.
Books and Chapters
SPECIAL EDUCATION ADVOCACY (co-editor with R. Colker; Chapter 7 co-authored with J. Wettach; LexisNexis Publishing, 2011)
A Solution Hiding in Plain Sight: Special Education and Better Outcomes for Students with Social, Emotional, and Behavioral Challenges, 41 FORDHAM URBAN LAW JOURNAL 403 (with Y. Cannon and M. Gregory; 2013)
Charter Schools Must Educate All of Our Children, LOS ANGELES DAILY JOURNAL (with M. Waterstone; July 27, 2012)
A Step Toward Dismantling the School to Prison Pipeline, LOS ANGELES DAILY JOURNAL (June 28, 2011)
Giving Kids a Fair Day in Court, LOS ANGELES DAILY JOURNAL (editorial; January 7, 2010)
Advocacy Tips for School Discipline Proceedings, LOS ANGELES DAILY JOURNAL (December 28, 2010)
Advocacy in School Discipline Proceedings, CHILDREN'S RIGHTS LITIGATION COMMITTEE, SECTION OF LITIGATION, NEWSLETTER (October 2009)