Kristen K. Waggoner serves as senior vice president of the U.S. legal division and general counsel, Arizona, with Alliance Defending Freedom. In this role, Waggoner oversees the U.S. legal division, a team of 60 attorneys and staff who engage in litigation, public advocacy, and legislative support. Since she assumed this role, ADF has prevailed as lead counsel in six U.S. Supreme Court victories. Waggoner currently serves as lead counsel in two pivotal artistic freedom cases: Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission, which she argued at the Supreme Court in fall 2017, and Arlene’s Flowers v. State of Washington. Waggoner has also testified before the U.S. House of Representatives’ Committee on Oversight and Government Reform on religious freedom issues.
Waggoner has extensive experience in civil litigation, employment, education, nonprofit, and constitutional law. After clerking with Washington Supreme Court Justice Richard B. Sanders and interning with U.S. Rep. Linda Smith, Waggoner joined Ellis, Li & McKinstry, a Seattle law firm, where she became a partner in 2004. At ELM, Waggoner participated as counsel in hundreds of legal matters including constitutional cases such as Andersen v. King County (same-sex marriage), Stormans v. Wiesman (pharmacists’ conscience rights), State ex rel Gallwey v. Grimm (financial aid to religious university students), and State v. Hamlin (clergy-penitent privilege).
Waggoner is Peer Review Rated AV® Preeminent™ in Martindale-Hubbell. Washington Law & Politics selected her as a “Rising Star” for many years, and she is a sought-after national speaker on legal and cultural issues. She regularly comments on religious freedom issues in television, radio, and print media, including The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, The Washington Times, BBC News, CBS, ABC, NBC, and Fox News. Waggoner is admitted to practice in multiple states, the Supreme Court, and numerous federal district and appellate courts.