Leighton is based in the Charlotte office and has a diverse educational background and a deep commitment to international law and business.

Leighton obtained her Juris Doctor (JD) and an International Master’s in Business Administration (IMBA) from the University of South Carolina (UofSC), where she played pivotal roles in various programs related to International Law and Business. Her leadership included serving as the President of the Willem C. Vis International Arbitration Court Moot, President of the International Law Society and Chair of the UofSC China Law Exchange. She also made significant contributions as a managing attorney at the Nonprofit Business Legal Clinic and authored an academic paper on the China Law Exchange, published in the Penn State Journal of Law & International Affairs in May 2023.

Leighton’s entrepreneurial spirit also shone through as she secured second place in the “Proving Ground” entrepreneurship competition at UofSC, earning an investment prize for her innovative educational platform aimed at facilitating cross-cultural business management between Chinese and United States enterprises.

Prior to law school, she earned her Bachelor of Arts in Comparative Literature and Chinese Language and Literature from the University of Georgia, graduating summa cum laude with highest honors. Leighton’s passion for Chinese culture led her to study in Harbin, China, as part of an honors international scholarship program, and she later received a fellowship from the Princeton in Asia program, teaching at Shihezi University.

In her free time, Leighton enjoys leisure activities such as reading, playing tennis, going to the theater, and being with friends and family.