Constitutional Law & Civil Rights
The firm represents an array of public officials and agencies and private
parties, ranging from President Obama to local public-interest groups,
in matters involving constitutional and statutory issues affecting constitutional
and civil rights.
Strumwasser & Woocher was California State Counsel for Barack Obama's
2008 and 2012 presidential campaigns, representing the campaigns in litigation
and working on voter protection matters. The firm has also successfully
represented President Obama and Vice President Biden in litigation challenging
the President's citizenship and the Secretary of State's certification
of California's electoral votes.
Keyes v. Bowen, 189 Cal. App. 4th 647 (2010).
Strumwasser & Woocher secured settlement of an action alleging race
discrimination in employment of probation officers and in delivery of
services to juvenile probationers. As part of the settlement, the County
of Los Angeles agreed to allocate intervention resources to probationers
according to rigorous criteria that research has shown to be most effective
in reducing delinquency.
Striking Down Discriminatory Insurance Legislation
On behalf of the California Insurance Commissioner and in conjunction with
several local and national civil rights and consumer rights organizations,
Strumwasser & Woocher won a judgment declaring new state insurance
legislation invalid and unconstitutional. The statutory amendments in
question discriminated against previously uninsured drivers in direct
violation of Proposition 103, a sweeping pro-consumer initiative regulating
the insurance industry.
The Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights, et al. v. Garamendi (Feb. 20, 2004, BS086235).
HUD Redlining Study
Strumwasser & Woocher advised the U.S. Assistant Secretary of Housing
and Urban Development for Civil Rights on enforcement of anti-redlining
rules under the Fair Housing Act, and served as special counsel in hearings
the Secretary conducted on possible rulemaking.
Weapon Searches in Schools
Strumwasser & Woocher successfully defended Los Angeles Unified School
District at trial and on appeal against a damages claim filed by an untenured
teacher whose contract was not renewed after she twice obstructed searches
of her classroom pursuant to the district's weapon search policy (crafted
in consultation with the ACLU and law enforcement officials).
Motevalli v. Los Angeles Unified School District, 122 Cal. App. 4th 97 (2004) .
Title VI Compliance
As counsel to the Los Angeles Unified School District, Strumwasser &
Woocher conducted a groundbreaking quantitative and legal study of the
district's bond financed school construction and modernization program
to determine whether any practices in implementing the program has a disparate
impact on minority students.
Strumwasser & Woocher served as lead outside counsel to the Los Angeles
Unified School District in its challenge to the constitutionality of state
legislation that would have removed the authority of the elected Board
of Education and handed over control of a significant portion of the school
district to a private entity headed by Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa.
Mendoza v. State of California, 149 Cal. App. 4th 1034 (2007).
Native American Heritage
The firm successfully represented a group of Native Americans to block
construction of a parking lot and strip‑mall on a sacred site located
on a state‑college campus.
Native American Heritage Com. v. Board of Trustees, 51 Cal. App. 4th 675 (1996).