Danielle E. Leonard

(415) 421-7151 ext. 323

B.A., Harvard and Radcliffe Colleges
J.D., Harvard Law School

Hon. Emmet G. Sullivan, United States District Court, District of Columbia

Danielle’s practice consists primarily of complex litigation. She has represented international, state and local labor unions, environmental groups and other advocacy organizations, and workers, students, and consumers in class actions, in cases involving diverse areas of law including labor law, employment law, voting rights and other constitutional issues.  She has briefed and argued numerous cases at the trial and appellate levels in federal and state courts.

Danielle is currently a member of the Board of Directors of the Peggy Browning Fund.  Danielle has served on the Executive Committee of the Litigation Section of the Bar Association of San Francisco and as the co-chair of the Employment Subcommittee of the Class Actions and Derivative Suits Committee of Litigation Section of the American Bar Association. Prior to joining the firm, Danielle was a trial attorney in the Voting Rights Section of the Civil Rights Division of the United States Department of Justice.

In 2013, Danielle was awarded two “California Lawyer of the Year” (CLAY) awards from California Lawyer Magazine in two separate categories: Voting Rights and Educational Law. Danielle has been named in the Northern California Super Lawyers listings since 2012 and has been selected as a Benchmark Plaintiff Top 150 Women in Litigation and Benchmark Plaintiff Local Litigation Star.

In addition to her law practice, Danielle enjoys rock and alpine climbing, and backpacking. She thru-hiked the John Muir Trail in 2014.

Representative matters:

  • Obtained, and defended on appeal, federal court injunctions preventing Ohio from unconstitutionally rejecting the provisional ballots cast by thousands of registered voters in federal and state elections.
  • In two different cases, obtained, and defended on appeal, multi-million dollar judgments for classes of thousands of students challenging fee increases by the University of California as breach of the contract price for their education.
  • On behalf of a coalition of labor and environmental organizations, litigated and then negotiated a settlement resulting in improvements to the State of California’s regulation of toxic chemicals.
  • Represented labor unions in successfully defending the legality of organizing agreements in a series of cases nationwide.
  • Served as trial counsel and assisted in obtaining a defense verdict in a jury trial seeking $3 million in damages from a labor organization.