The Home School Legal Defense Association Political Action Committee (HSLDA PAC) is the connected PAC of HSLDA. Founded and chaired by Mike Farris, HSLDA PAC is a multi-candidate federal political action committee, formed to allow HSLDA to engage directly in the political arena. Formed in 2003, HSLDA PAC is dedicated to providing support and services to pro-family, pro-homeschooling candidates running for federal office. HSLDA PAC’s goal is to increase the number of pro-family, pro-homeschooling men and women in federal office.
J. Michael Smith, Esq.
Michael Smith and his wife Elizabeth, along with Michael Farris and his wife, Vickie, incorporated Home School Legal Defense Association in 1983 and were the original board members. Mike grew up in Arkansas, graduated from the University of Arkansas where he played basketball, majoring in business administration. Upon graduation, he entered the U.S. Navy and served three years before attending law school at the University of San Diego.
In 1972, he was admitted to the bar in California and also has been admitted to the Supreme Court of the United States. He is licensed in Virginia, California, and Washington, D.C.
Mike and his family began homeschooling because their 5-year-old flunked kindergarten. This was quite a disappointment to Mike in light of the fact that he was preparing this child to be President of the United States by starting his education as early as possible.
His family's life changed drastically when he heard a radio program in 1981 which introduced him to the idea of homeschooling. When they started homeschooling, they began homeschooling one year at a time to meet the academic and social needs of their children. After spending lots of time around people like Mike Farris, he became convinced he had been called to use his gifts and talents in the legal profession to assist homeschoolers who were being prosecuted because they didn't hold a teacher's certificate or satisfy the school district that they could competently teach their children.
Mike came to HSLDA full-time in 1987 and has served as president of the organization since the year 2001. In addition to serving as president, he also is a contact lawyer for California, Nevada and Puerto Rico. All of Mike’s children are now grown, and three of the four were homeschooled. The most enjoyable part of Mike’s job is when he is able to go to homeschool conferences and meet what he calls America’s greatest heroes, homeschooling moms.
William A. Estrada
A homeschool graduate from Pennsylvania, Will Estrada began working for HSLDA in January 2004 as a legal assistant to HSLDA Senior Counsel Scott Woodruff. After graduating from Oak Brook College of Law with his Juris Doctor law degree, he moved on to direct HSLDA’s Federal Relations department and serve as HSLDA’s federal lobbyist. As HSLDA’s representative on Capitol Hill, Will uses his passion for homeschooling to advocate for all homeschooling families before Congress, the White House, and the federal departments. He has testified before Congress, served on a Negotiated Rulemaking Committee for the U.S. Department of Education, and met with senior officials from federal agencies and the Executive Branch.
From October 2007 through December 2012, Will served as the director of Generation Joshua, a division of HSLDA, where he worked with young people who are passionate about making a difference in politics. He oversaw a doubling of Generation Joshua’s membership, an increase in local clubs, and an expansion of Generation Joshua’s reach and effectiveness. Will continues to work closely with Generation Joshua as the director of the HSLDA Federal PAC and the HSLDA Virginia PAC, HSLDA’s political arms.
In July 2011, Will began lobbying for ParentalRights.org as the organization’s director of government relations, where he advocates before Congress for the Parental Rights Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. He was chosen by the board of ParentalRights.org as the organization’s Secretary in January 2017.
Will is a member of the U.S. Supreme Court bar, the California bar, and the District of Columbia bar. He has served on the board of Life Raft International, a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping refugees in Thailand, and he also served a two-year term as the Chairman of the Board of Good Samaritan Advocates, a nonprofit pro bono legal services organization in the greater Washington, D.C., area. In March 2016, Will was elected as the Chairman of the Loudoun County Republican Committee in Virginia. During the 2016 presidential election, Will served on the Transition Team for Donald J. Trump, helping to advise the Trump-Pence campaign on education policy issues that affect homeschool freedom.
Will and his wife Rachel, who is also a homeschool graduate as well as a professional pastel artist, reside in northern Virginia with their two sons, Dominic and Merrick.