Oliver Lewis is the Executive Director of the Mental Disability Advocacy Center, having served as its Legal Director from the organisation’s inception in 2002 until 2006. He was called to the Bar of England and Wales in 2000, and is an Associate Member of Doughty Street Chambers, London. Before training as a barrister, Oliver worked a research assistant to Professor Genevra Richardson’s expert committee on mental health law reform, and subsequently for the UK’s Department of Health. He studied law at the London School of Economics and Political Science, and holds an MA in Medical Ethics and Law from King’s College, London, and a MPA (Master of Public Administration) from the Open University Business School. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (FRSA) and a Fellow of the Institute of Leadership and Management (FInstLM).
Oliver is an experienced human rights advocate, and has overseen winning advocacy strategies that have held both international bodies and national governments account for the human rights commitments they have made. Oliver has experience working with a variety of mechanisms, including UN treaty bodies, UN Special Rapporteurs, the European Commission and Parliament, the Venice Commission, and the European Committee for the Prevention of Torture. He is an experienced public speaker and trainer, and has worked with disabled people’s organisations, human rights activists, inspectorates, lawyers and judges in many countries.
Teaching and publications
Oliver is recurrent Visiting Professor at the Legal Studies Department, Central European University in Budapest where he teaches a course on “Mental disability law and advocacy”, and Visiting Lecturer in Law at the University of Leeds, UK. He is on the faculty of the International Diploma on Mental Health Law and Human Rights, run by the Indian Law Society in Pune, India. Oliver has several publications on human rights, mental health and disability, which can be found here. He blogs at www.mdac.org/OliverTalks.