Emilie Kao

Emilie Kao

Director of the Richard and Helen DeVos Center for Religion & Civil Society at The Heritage Foundation

Emilie Kao is director of the Richard and Helen DeVos Center for Religion & Civil Society at The Heritage Foundation.

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Emilie Kao is an attorney who has defended religious freedom for the last 14 years. She worked on behalf of victims of religious freedom violations in East Asia, the Middle East, Europe and South Asia at the State Department’s Office of International Freedom, the law firm of Jus Cogens, and Becket Law.  

Kao also taught international human rights law at George Mason University Law School as an adjunct law professor.

Prior to religious freedom advocacy, Kao worked at the United Nations Compensation Commission in Geneva and the law firm of Latham and Watkins.  

She earned an A.B. degree in Near Eastern Civilizations and Languages at Harvard-Radcliffe College and a J.D. at Harvard Law School. She is a member of the bar associations of California and the District of Columbia.

Kao lives inWashington D.C.