Leslie Harris is the President and CEO of the Center for Democracy & Technology. Ms. Harris is responsible for the overall vision, direction and management of the organization and serves as the organization's chief spokesperson. Since joining CDT, she has been involved with a wide range of issues related to civil liberties and the Internet, including, government data- mining for counterintelligence, government secrecy, privacy, global Internet freedom, intellectual property, data security and Internet censorship.
Ms. Harris has over two decades of experience as a civil liberties, technology and Internet lawyer, public policy advocate and strategist in Washington. She testifies before Congress on issues related to technology, the Internet and civil liberties and writes, speaks on Internet issues and is regular contributor to several online publications and blogs.
Prior to joining CDT, Ms. Harris was the founder and president of Leslie Harris & Associates, a public policy a firm committed to harnessing the power of new information technologies for public good. She has played a lead role in several key pieces of Internet-related legislation, including E-rate, the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act and the Technology Education and Copyright Harmonization Act. She was also a key strategist and spokesperson in the effort to defeat the Communications Decency Act.
Prior to establishing Leslie Harris & Associates, Ms. Harris served in senior leadership positions in two prominent civil liberties organizations, People for the American Way, and the American Civil Liberties Union.
John B. Morris, Jr. is CDT's General Counsel, and the Director of its "Internet Standards, Technology and Policy Project." Prior to joining CDT in 2001, Mr. Morris was a partner in the law firm of Jenner & Block, where he litigated groundbreaking cases in Internet and First Amendment law. He was a lead counsel in the ACLU v. Reno/American Library Association v. U.S. Dep't of Justice case, in which the Supreme Court unanimously overturned the Communications Decency Act of 1996 and extended to speech on the Internet the highest level of constitutional protection. In that case, Mr. Morris was responsible for the development of the factual presentation concerning how the Internet works, a presentation that served as the foundation for the Supreme Court's landmark decision.
From May 1999 through April 2000, Mr. Morris served as director of CDT's Broadband Access Project (while on leave from his firm). The Project undertook a comprehensive assessment of the legal, policy, and factual issues surrounding the emergence of broadband Internet access technologies.
Prior to becoming a lawyer, Mr. Morris had extensive experience with computers and politics. In the mid-1970's, as a staff member on Capitol Hill, he helped to promote the use of computer software to manage and improve constituent communications. In 1981, Mr. Morris joined a D.C.-area computer company, where he was one of the lead system designers of a constituent management software system for Members of Congress. In 1985, he co-founded Intelligent Solutions, Inc., which developed the leading constituent services product used on Capitol Hill today.