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366 Merrimon Ave., Asheville, North Carolina 28801
Free Consultation 828-348-0092 828-348-0092

Our Staff

Please navigate below to view our staff profiles.

Jennifer H. Harrison

Jennifer H. Harrison

Office Manager/Legal Assistant

Jennifer has been with the firm since 2006. Prior to that she worked with a general practice law firm for 10 years as a legal assistant and in a physician’s office for 13 years handling health insurance coding/billing and medical records. She has an Associate in Applied Science in Business Administration from Blue Ridge Community College. Jennifer enjoys spending time with her family, is a sports fan, and is active in her church.

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 Jennifer L. Hensley

Jennifer L. Hensley – “Jenny”

Legal Assistant & Marketing Coordinator

Jenny received her Bachelor of Arts Degree in Elementary Education.  After over 20 years as an educator, she came to work at Hensley Cloninger as a legal assistant.  Jenny is married to John C. Hensley, Jr. and they have two children.  A son, John Hensley, III and a daughter Jordan Hensley.  John, III is a Project manager with the Virginia Department of Transportation and Jordan, a graduate from Elon Law School, is working on behalf of Veteran’s benefits in Maryland.  John and Jenny are welcoming a daughter-in-law, Melissa, to their family in April 2020.

Jenny enjoys meeting our clients as well as spending time with her family, traveling, cooking, playing trivia with friends and watching her UNC Tarheels play football and basketball.

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Riley Vai

Riley Vai

Nurse Paralegal

Riley began her career working as a traditional hospital Licensed Practical Nurse – med surgery, orthopedics, pediatrics, ICU and finally the operating room. She later graduated from Regents College of New York with an Associate in Science Liberal Arts [Registered Nurse Program]. After 25 years of nursing experience, Riley obtained an Associate Degree in Legal Assisting at Northern Virginia Community College and began working as a litigation paralegal for the Plaintiff. Riley is an active member in her church, a member of the CMA (Christian Motorcycle Association) and a respite volunteer with Hospice.

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Karen Dickerson

Karen Dickerson, RN-BSN, JD

Legal Nurse Consultant

Karen is a Registered Nurse with over 28 years of experience. She has worked in a variety of positions throughout her bedside career including the Operating Room, Labor and Delivery, Clinical Coordinator of a GYN Oncology Clinic and Hospital Supervisor over a large Trauma 1 Teaching Hospital. She has traveled across the country assisting doctors and hospitals in providing expert care and guidance in the care of obstetrical and newborn patients.

After working as a Legal Nurse Consultant at a law firm in Charleston, South Carolina, Karen decided to complement her nursing degree with a degree in law. She received her Juris Doctorate from the Charleston School of Law in 2007.

Karen specializes in medical malpractice. She has a special interest in obstetrical cases involving problems such as pre-eclampsia, cerebral palsy, birth injuries and birth hypoxia.

In her spare time, Karen enjoys baking, concerts, the beach, painting furniture and antiquing.

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Karen Dickerson

Emily Thompson

Paralegal

Emily has lived in Asheville since 2008 and has been a legal assistant since 2011, shortly after graduating from UNCA with a B.A. in Political Science. During her time at UNCA, she completed an internship at Pisgah Legal Services and worked with attorneys participating in the Mountain Area Volunteer Lawyers Program, which led to her first job as a legal assistant. Her professional experience has covered the span of medical malpractice to construction law, with many practice areas in between. She aims to provide a positive experience for clients who are otherwise going through difficult times.

Emily is happily married with two young children, a young-at-heart dog, and eight baby chicks. She enjoys thrift shopping, meal planning, and spending time outdoors.

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Madelyn Laughter

Madelyn Laughter

Legal Assistant

Madelyn joined our firm in June 2019 as a legal assistant. She graduated with honors in 2017, from an early college high school where she received a dual high school diploma and Associate in Arts. She earned her Bachelor of Science in criminal justice from Western Carolina University’s Honors College, graduating cum laude in 2019. Madelyn in currently studying for the LSAT and plans to attend law school in the near future. In her spare time, Madelyn enjoys outdoor activities, spending time with family and friends, and of course, studying.

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Kristy Ward

Kristy Ward

Paralegal

Kristy Ward joined our firm in November, 2019. Kristy grew up in Cashiers, North Carolina, and lived on the North Carolina coast for twenty-eight years prior to her recent move to the Asheville area. Educated at the University of North Carolina and with twelve years of experience as a general litigation paralegal, Kristy is a vital part of our workers compensation and personal injury team. On her down time, Kristy enjoys coaching basketball, reading, and enjoying time with her two grown children, Leigh and Zach. She is an avid UNC fan and her blood runs blue!

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