CECILIA SMITH PETERSEN
Cecilia Smith Petersen is a native of Knoxville, Tennessee. She graduated from The University of Tennessee with Honors in Business Administration in 1981 and from the University of Tennessee George C. Taylor School of Lawn with Honors in 1984. Since then she associated with Kramer, Rayson, Leake, Rodgers & Morgan for nine years in a general litigation practice and worked with Wimberly & Lawson in an employment law practice before opening her own office in 1996. In her own practice, Cecilia has focused primarily on family law, including divorce, custody disputes, adoption, child support and appellate work. Cecilia has been a Rule 31 mediator since 1998 and is trained in domestic violence mediation. She is licensed to practice in all Tennessee state courts and Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals. Cecilia is active as a member in the Tennessee Bar Association as well as the Knox County Bar Association, having served as President of the Barristers and a Board Member of the Knoxville Bar.
SARAH SWANSON HIGGINS
Sarah Swanson Higgins is originally from Pennsylvania, but has additionally lived in South Carolina, California, Iowa, Maryland, and Georgia, finally making East Tennessee her home for the last 33 years. She graduated from The Pennsylvania State University with a B.A. in history and obtained her J.D. from the University of Maryland School of Law. Sarah was licensed to practice law in the State of Georgia in 1984 and was admitted to the Tennessee bar in 1986. Sarah is an experienced litigator, practicing family law, including divorce, child custody and support, domestic violence, adoption, as well as Juvenile Court matters. Sarah is licensed to practice in all Tennessee State Courts and the U.S. District Courts for the Eastern District of Tennessee. Her practice focuses primarily in Knox and surrounding areas in East Tennessee. Since becoming a Rule 31 Listed Family Mediator in 2002, her experience and knowledge of the law has been proven countless times as she assisted attorneys and their clients in amicably resolving their legal disputes. From 2001 to 2015, Sarah frequently sat as Special Master in the Fourth Circuit Court for Knox County, hearing Orders of Protection, as well as having been appointed to hear divorce and co-parenting matters. Sarah has been a speaker on domestic violence issues at the General Sessions Judge’s Conference and at local bar association and paralegal group presentations.