Leslie Hiner is vice president of programs at EdChoice, formerly the Friedman Foundation for Educational Choice. In her work for the legacy foundation of Nobel Laureate Economist Milton Friedman and his equally gifted wife, economist Rose Friedman, she strives to advance the Friedman’s vision of universal school choice to improve educational outcomes and preserve individual liberty.
Leslie has been published and quoted in several national and state publications, including the Wall Street Journal, Washington Times, The Hill, Atlanta Journal Constitution, National Review, Zman Magazine, World, Los Angeles Times, Federalist Society’s DocketWatch, School Reform News, Real Clear Policy, and Watchdog, and has appeared on television and radio shows and podcasts from coast to coast including ChoiceMediaTV, The Heartland Institute, The Morning Blaze, The MiddleGround, and Issues in Education. She is a frequent speaker on the topic of school choice at national, state and local events, and testifies often before state legislatures.
Leslie serves on the Schools That Can National Advisory Board. She is an appointee to the U. S. Commission on Civil Rights Indiana State Advisory Committee, and also serves as an appointee to the Indianapolis City-County Ethics Commission.
Prior to joining The Friedman Foundation, Leslie served as Chief of Staff to the Speaker of the Indiana House of Representatives. Leslie also served as majority attorney to the Indiana State Senate President Pro Tempore, general counsel and elections deputy to the Indiana Secretary of State, and counsel to the State Recount Commission. As an attorney in private practice, she represented clients in court and handled contract and EEOC cases. Leslie also represented unionized city sanitation workers in a successful bid to provide services when Indianapolis Mayor Steve Goldsmith established a public-private partnership to provide trash and leaf pickup in Indianapolis.
A licensed attorney for over 30 years, Leslie previously served as president of the Federalist Society Indianapolis Lawyers Chapter, and continues to be an active member of the Society. When she and her husband owned a small business, Leslie served on the Howard County Chamber of Commerce board of directors and legislative affairs committee (chair), Howard County United Way board of directors and allocations council (chair), and Howard County Bar Association board of directors (secretary/treasurer). During this time, Leslie also served on Governor Bayh’s state task force to reform regulatory burdens inhibiting the growth of small business in Indiana.
Her education experience includes being a founding board member of the Irvington Community School, one of Indiana’s first charter schools now serving 1000 children, where she served as chairman of the board for several years. Leslie was an adjunct professor at the University Of Indianapolis School Of Business, PFO board secretary at the Forest Glen International public magnet school, and board member of the Kokomo Montessori Children’s House. She attended Rostad Teachers College in Sweden, student teaching in grades 2 and 3 in Kalmar, Sweden.
Leslie is an alumna of the Lugar Series for Excellence in Public Service, and she is listed in several Who’s Who publications. Leslie graduated from the College of Wooster and the University Of Akron School Of Law, both in Ohio. She and her husband have two children; a daughter who is an executive chef, and a son who is completing his undergraduate studies.