In a decade of journalism, Emily Adams contributed to the Los Angeles Times' Pulitzer Prize in breaking news. She won the California State Bar's award for investigations and several Los Angeles Press Club awards for investigative reporting, general news writing, and, in 1998, for her body of work.

At the Los Angeles Times from 1992-95, she covered the cities of Compton and Long Beach, along with several court trials. She reported on the Los Angeles riots of 1992 from Compton.

At the Daily Breeze from 1995-99, she covered civil and criminal trials, legal issues, and general assignment reporting, and broke several national stories.