Car Accident Attorney
Attorney Kayla Leonard grew up in West Seneca, New York. She is a graduate of West Seneca West Senior High School, where she played on the Varsity Soccer team and was involved in the National Honor Society, Science Club, and Ski Club. Kayla completed her undergraduate degree at D’Youville College where she graduated magna cum laude, with a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and a minor in English. She was named Sociology Major of the Year in 2014.
Before Kayla made the decision to go to law school, she worked as a paralegal for a local immigration law firm, where she assisted attorneys and the preparation and filing of both business immigration and family reunification documentation with various federal agencies. This experience made Kayla realize she wanted to broaden her legal knowledge and help more people in her community.
Kayla earned her Juris Doctor from University at Buffalo School of Law, where she graduated cum laude. During her time in law school, Kayla was involved with the school’s Buffalo Public Interest Law Program. The Buffalo Public Interest Law Program raises money to support student work in the public interest, and hosts networking events for students to meet public-interest employers from all around New York State. Kayla served as Outreach Coordinator, where she assisted in organizing BPILP’s fundraising and networking efforts. She also acted as a Research Assistant for the Baldy Center of Law and Social Policy for a collaborative project between the University at Buffalo Schools of Law and Engineering. In addition, Kayla served as a Student Attorney with the law school’s mediation clinic where she observed and conducted mediations in the areas of family law, small claims, landlord/tenant, community and/or other disputes referred by local courts and/or other community mediation resources. She also contributed to the UB Law Sports Forum, where she blogged about legal issues affecting the sports community.
Prior to joining William Mattar, Kayla worked as a legal intern with the New York State Unified Court System, 8th Judicial District. She was employed in the Honorable Thomas Franczyk’s chambers, where she conducted legal research in the areas of criminal and civil law, assisted in the preparation of the judge’s decisions and orders, and observed criminal and civil trials. Kayla describes this experience as “invaluable” to her legal career, as she was able to network with and observe some of the best litigators in Western New York.
In addition to her internship with the courts, Kayla worked at a plaintiff’s personal injury firm for two and a half years, where she focused her research and writing efforts on motor vehicle accidents, construction accidents, premises liability, and other general personal injury matters. This experience ignited her passion for helping injured victims navigate what is likely one of the most difficult times of their lives.
Admitted to practice law in New York State, Kayla originally decided to become a lawyer because she enjoys helping people, and she is most passionate about advocating for clients and is inspired by seeing how much help attorneys can provide for clients through a difficult time. When asked why she decided to join the William Mattar team, she replied, “William Mattar has a great client centered approach to their practice of personal injury law. They truly care about each of their clients’ health and recovery, something you do not always find in a law firm. Additionally, I really enjoy the team atmosphere the firm focuses on. We work together to get our clients the best results.”
Kayla is a member of the Erie County Bar Association where she is a member of the negligence committee and young lawyers committee. In addition, she is a member of the New York State Bar Association, Western New York Trial Lawyers Association, and the Western New York Women’s Bar Association.
Outside of the office and courtroom, Kayla stays busy with volunteer work and family time. She volunteers with Buddy’s Second Chance Rescue, a local foster based rescue program for stray and abandoned dogs. In addition, Kayla volunteers with the Spinal Muscular Atrophy Research Time (SMART), a grass roots organization started in 2009 to raise awareness and funds for research aimed at finding a cure for SMA & related diseases. In her free time, Kayla enjoys watching her favorite Buffalo teams, like the Buffalo Bills, Buffalo Sabres, Buffalo Bandits and FC Buffalo. Additionally, she enjoys vacationing with her family to Walt Disney World.
- D’Youville College (B.A.), 2014
- University at Buffalo Law School (J.D.), 2018
New York State, 2019
- Erie County Bar Association
- New York State Bar Association