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Disability Law

Dyslexia No Bar to Legal Career for Advocate and Inventor

Posted May 16, 2011 5:30 AM CDT
By Debra Cassens Weiss

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A disability advocate who is severely dyslexic says he’s not the only JD who has the reading disorder.

Ben Foss is the new executive director of Disability Rights Advocates, a nonprofit that litigates on behalf of the disabled, according to a press release. He has a joint JD and MBA from Stanford University, yet as a child he was in special education classes.

Foss tells the National Law Journal (reg. req.) that he has met lawyers with dyslexia, but they tend to be quiet about it. One exception, he says, is litigator David Boies. “He is severely dyslexic and he's public about it,” Foss says.

Foss previously worked at Intel, where he developed a hand-held reader that takes a photograph of text and converts it to audio. He identified three pressing issues in disability law for the NLJ:

• Federal services for veterans with disabilities.

• Access to the virtual world through high-tech devices.

• Accessible taxis and public transportation.

First bullet shortened on May 17 at the request of the DRA.

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