Cheryl A. Leanza is the President of her consulting firm, A Learned Hand, LLC, www.alearnedhand.com. In this capacity she serves as policy advisor to the United Church of Christ’s historic media advocacy arm and as the Co-Chair of the Leadership Conference of Civil Rights Media & Telecommunications Task Force. Her other clients have included Education Super Highway, Progressive States Network, Leadership Conference Education Fund, National Federation of Community Broadcasters, Future of Music Coalition, Public Knowledge, and Native Public Media, among others.
Ms. Leanza co-founded the Faithful Internet campaign and helped to lead the victorious effort to pass the Local Community Radio Act. She has been a leader in public interest advocacy for more than 15 years, including advocacy for diversity in media ownership, net neutrality, capping predatory prison phone rates, and other policies furthering First Amendment principles. She has represented non-profits before the Federal Communications Commission, in the U.S. Appellate courts and before Congress, and has been widely quoted in the trade and mainstream press on these issues, most recently in the New York Times, Washington Post, Time Magazine, McClatchy wire services and recent op-eds in The Hill and Sojourners.
Ms. Leanza’s prior positions include a stint as Principal Legislative Counsel for telecommunications at the National League of Cities. She spent six and one-half years as Deputy Director of Media Access Project and began her career in the Federal Communications Commission’s honor attorney program. She is the author of several law review articles on communications policy, including a forthcoming law journal article on ethics and policy advocacy as applied to prison phone rates.
Ms. Leanza is a cum laude graduate of the University of Michigan Law School and the Ford School of Public Policy and has taught at Georgetown University’s Department of Communications, Culture and Technology. She is admitted in the District of Columbia and New York; and in the United States Supreme Court; U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, Third, Fourth, and Ninth Circuits.
5 Reasons the Future of Faith Depends on the Open Internet
Sojourners [June 12, 2015]
An Open Internet, For God's Sake
The Hill [March 16, 2015 ]
Theory Applied: Walking the Halls of Power and the Streets in the Successful Campaign to End Predatory Long Distance Prison Phone Rates
Civil Rights and Economic Development [Forthcoming]
Trying to Silence Others' Speech: Hecklers' Veto Case Law as a Resource for Democratic Discourse
Hofstra Law Review 
How Can Government Constitutionally Compel Mass Media to Serve the Public, and How Can Citizens Make It Happen?
News Incorporated: Corporate Media Ownership and Its Threat to Democracy [February 1, 2005 ]