William Leiner is a Managing Attorney at Disability Rights California. He is part of DRC’s Legal Advocacy Unit, which is tasked with fulfilling DRC’s federal “protection and advocacy” mandate to advance the rights of Californians with disabilities. In his role, Mr. Leiner supports the work of the Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Practice Group, a statewide team engaged in multi-pronged advocacy, including impact litigation and individual cases, administrative and legislative policy, collective action campaigns, and other systemic reform efforts, to better the lives of intellectually and developmentally disabled Californians.
Throughout his career, Mr. Leiner has worked to advance the core community integration principles of the Supreme Court’s Olmstead decision and the rights of disabled people to live self-determined lives. He helped litigate and settle the class action lawsuit, Capitol People First, et al. v. Department of Developmental Services, et al., (Alameda Cnty. Sup. Ct., Case No. 2002-038715), which secured community living options for people unnecessary institutionalized in state-run and private institutions. Since that time, Mr. Leiner has represented numerous individuals to help them get the regional center and other Medicaid-funded supports they need to live their chosen way of life. He is currently part of efforts to expand the use of supported decision-making in California.
Mr. Leiner received his undergraduate degree from the University of California, Los Angeles. He attended law school at the University of California Hastings College of the Law.