Catherine Blakemore is the former Executive Director of Disability Rights California. She has been a legal aid attorney for her entire legal career. Before joining DRC, Ms. Blakemore was an attorney with the Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles and the Disability Rights Legal Center. Her work as an attorney was in the area of special education. She continues to work as one of the lawyers in Chanda Smith vs. Los Angeles Unified School District, a landmark class action suit, whose consent decree serves as a blueprint for the comprehensive delivery of special education and services to students with special needs.
She also served, as an Appointed Member of the California Supreme Court State Bar Board of Trustees Nominating Committee and President of the National Disability Rights Network. She was named Legal Services Provider of the Year in 2011 by the Bench-Bar Coalition and in 2016 received the Loren Miller Legal Services Award from the State Bar of California, each for her work on behalf of low-income and disabled Californians.
Ms. Blakemore graduated from Loyola University School of Law in Los Angeles.