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Speakers & Panelists

 

Conference Organizers

Ken Gormley, president, Duquesne University

Ken GormleyKen Gormley is the 13th president of Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, where he previously served as professor of law before being named dean of the Duquesne University School of Law. He joined the faculty in 1994 following a career teaching at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law; working in private practice at the firm of Mansmann, Cindrich & Titus; and clerking for U.S. District Judge Donald E. Ziegler and Pennsylvania Supreme Court Justice Ralph J. Cappy.

Gormley earned his bachelors from the University of Pittsburgh in 1977, summa cum laude, and was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. He received his juris doctor from Harvard Law School in 1980 and was a teaching assistant in constitutional law to Professor Archibald Cox, the special prosecutor during the Watergate scandal.

Gormley's work has earned him a national reputation as a highly respected constitutional scholar. In 1997, he published Archibald Cox: Conscience of a Nation (Perseus Books), the authorized biography of one of the leading lawyers and public servants of the 20th century. The Cox book was awarded the 1999 Bruce K. Gould Book Award for an outstanding publication relating to the law.

In 2010, Gormley published The Death of American Virtue: Clinton vs. Starr (Crown), a New York Times bestseller chronicling the scandals that nearly destroyed the Clinton presidency. The Death of American Virtue received a 2011 Silver Gavel Award (honorable mention) from the American Bar Association as well as critical acclaim in publications including the New York Times Book Review (Editor's Choice), Washington Post Book World, Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times, The Atlantic magazine and dozens of others.

Gormley's latest book, American Presidents and the Constitution: A Living History, was published by NYU Press in May 2016 to national acclaim.

Gormley has testified in the United States Senate three times and has testified in the Pennsylvania Senate on state constitutional matters. A past president of the Allegheny County Bar Association, Gormley was the first academic to hold that position in the organization's history.

As president of Duquesne University, Gormley has emphasized the university's historic mission to foster ethical behavior and dialogue through a series of public events focused on civil discourse. Past events have focused on "Technology, Social Media and Civil Discourse" and "Racial and Cultural Understanding in a New Era."

Gormley and his wife, Laura, have four children and live in Forest Hills, Pennsylvania, where he served as mayor from 1998 to 2001.


Maxwell King, president and CEO, The Pittsburgh Foundation

Maxwell KingMaxwell King's career has spanned more than four decades and includes the presidencies of two of the country's largest philanthropies and the editorship of one of its largest and most influential daily newspapers, as well as service on national and local civic boards and committees.

King joined The Pittsburgh Foundation, with assets of more than $1 billion, in 2014 as president and CEO after previous service as a board member.

His strong advocacy for including vulnerable groups - at least 30 percent of the region's population - in the benefit streams of a resurgent Pittsburgh anchors a signature organizing principle, 100 Percent Pittsburgh, which he developed and is leading for the Foundation.

In addition, King is expanding the Foundation's investment in its Center for Philanthropy, a physical space inside the organization and a state-of-the-art philanthropic process. The Center combines the charitable passions of donors with the experience and knowledge of program staff and community experts to improve lives in the Pittsburgh region.

Before the Foundation appointment, King served for two years as the founding director of the Fred Rogers Center for Early Learning and Children's Media at Saint Vincent College in Latrobe, Westmoreland County. In 2011, he left the Center to begin writing the first-ever full biography of children's educational television pioneer Fred Rogers, a project that continues in his present position.

Prior to that, King served from 1999 to 2008 as president of the Pittsburgh-based Heinz Endowments, now a $1.5 billion foundation. In his tenure, the Endowments awarded approximately $500 million in grants to projects, organizations and initiatives with most in western Pennsylvania. Areas in which he has made significant contributions as a philanthropic leader include implementing environmental stewardship programs, raising the quality of urban design, expanding early childhood education and reforming the city's public school system.

From 1990 to 1998, King was editor of the Philadelphia Inquirer. During that period, the Inquirer was recognized by Time magazine as one of the five best newspapers in America.

King is the recipient of numerous awards, including honorary doctorates from Point Park University and the University of Pittsburgh. He and his wife, Margaret "Peggy" King, live in a home in Squirrel Hill ruled by their dogs, Finn and Cora. They are the parents of two sons and have four grandsons.


In Partnership With

Jeffrey Rosen, president and CEO, National Constitution Center

Jeffrey RosenJeffrey Rosen is the president and chief executive officer of the National Constitution Center, a nonpartisan nonprofit organization whose mission is to educate the public about the U.S. Constitution. Located steps from Independence Hall in Historic Philadelphia, the Center engages millions of citizens as an interactive museum, national town hall and provider of nonpartisan resources for civic education. Rosen became president and CEO in 2013 and has developed the Center's acclaimed Interactive Constitution, which brings together the top conservative and liberal legal scholars in America to discuss areas of agreement and disagreement about every clause of the Constitution. The online resource has received more than 15 million hits since launching in 2015.

Rosen also is professor at The George Washington University Law School and a contributing editor of The Atlantic. He is a highly regarded journalist whose essays and commentaries have appeared in The New York Times Magazine; on National Public Radio; in the New Republic, where he was the legal affairs editor; and The New Yorker, where he was a staff writer. The Chicago Tribune named him one of the 10 best magazine journalists in America, and a reviewer for the Los Angeles Times called him "the nation's most widely read and influential legal commentator."

Rosen is the author of six books including, most recently, a biography of William Howard Taft, published as part of The American Presidents Series. His other books include Louis D. Brandeis: American Prophet; The Supreme Court: The Personalities and Rivalries that Defined America; The Most Democratic Branch: How the Courts Serve America; The Naked Crowd: Reclaiming Security and Freedom in an Anxious Age; and The Unwanted Gaze: The Destruction of Privacy in America. He is co-editor of Constitution 3.0: Freedom and Technological Change.

Rosen was a Marshall Scholar and graduated from Harvard College; Oxford University and Yale Law School.


Speakers and Moderators

Floyd Abrams, attorney, author and leading legal authority on the First Amendment

Floyd AbramsFloyd Abrams is senior counsel at Cahill Gordon & Reindel LLP and an adjunct professor at New York University Law School. Abrams was described by Senator Patrick Moynihan as "the leading First Amendment lawyer of our age."  He has written three books about the First Amendment of which the most recent is The Soul of the First Amendment (Yale U. Press, 2017).

For the past half-century, Abrams has been counsel or co-counsel in numerous cases before the Supreme Court ranging from the Pentagon Papers case, in which he represented the New York Times, to the Citizens United case in which he represented Senator Mitch McConnell. His media clients have included NBC, ABC, CBS, Reader's Digest, Businessweek, The Nation and many other individual journalists.

Abrams received a B.A. from Cornell University and an L.L.B. from Yale Law School. He has taught at Yale Law School, Columbia Law School and the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism where he served for 15 years as the William J. Brennan Visiting Professor of First Amendment Law.


Dean P. Baquet, executive editor, The New York Times

Dean BaquetDean Baquet is executive editor of The New York Times, a position he assumed in May 2014. Baquet serves in the highest ranked position in The Times's newsroom and oversees The New York Times news report in all its various forms.

Before being named executive editor, Baquet was managing editor of The Times. He previously served as Washington bureau chief. Baquet rejoined The Times after several years at the Los Angeles Times, where he was editor for two years. Previously, Baquet had been national editor and deputy metro editor of The New York Times. He joined in 1990 as a metro reporter.

Before that, he reported for the Chicago Tribune and The Times-Picayune in New Orleans for nearly seven years. While at the Chicago Tribune, Baquet was awarded a Pulitzer Prize in 1988 for investigative reporting on corruption in the Chicago City Council.


Martin Baron, executive editor, The Washington Post

Martin BaronMartin "Marty" Baron became executive editor of The Washington Post on Jan. 2, 2013. He oversees The Post's print and digital news operations and a staff of more than 800 journalists.

Newsrooms under his leadership have won 14 Pulitzer Prizes, including seven at The Washington Post. During his tenure, The Post has won four times for national reporting, and once each for investigative reporting, explanatory reporting and public service, the latter in recognition of revelations of secret surveillance by the National Security Agency.

Previously, Baron was editor of The Boston Globe. During his 11½ years there, The Globe won six Pulitzer prizes—for public service, explanatory journalism, national reporting and criticism. Prior to The Globe, he held top editing positions at The New York Times, the Los Angeles Times and the Miami Herald. Under his leadership, the Miami Herald won the Pulitzer Prize for Breaking News Coverage in 2001 for its coverage of the raid to recover Elián González, the Cuban boy at the center of a fierce immigration and custody dispute.

His honors include Editor of the Year by the National Press Foundation (2004), the Al Neuharth Award for Excellence in the Media (2017), the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press Award (2017) and the Award for Public Leadership from the University of Pennsylvania's Fels Institute of Government (2016). In 2012, he was inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He is the recipient of honorary doctorates from George Washington University, George Mason University and his alma mater, Lehigh University.

Baron began his journalism career at the Miami Herald in 1976, serving as a state reporter and later as a business writer. In 1979, he moved to the Los Angeles Times, where he became business editor in 1983; assistant managing editor for page-one special reports, public opinion polling and special projects in 1991; and editor of the newspaper's Orange County edition in 1993, which had approximately 165 staffers.

In 1996, Baron moved to The New York Times, where he became associate managing editor responsible for the nighttime news operations in 1997. He was named executive editor at the Miami Herald at the start of 2000.

Born in 1954 and raised in Tampa, Florida, Baron speaks fluent Spanish. He graduated from Lehigh University in 1976 with bachelor's and master's degrees.


Katy Glenn Bass, research director, Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University

Katy Glenn BassKaty Glenn Bass is the Knight Institute's research director. She was previously the director of PEN America's Free Expression Research and Policy program. There, she supervised the production of reports analyzing free expression issues, including the lack of protections for national security whistleblowers; attacks on journalists covering the 2014 protests in Ferguson, Missouri; the impact of mass surveillance on online speech; and other topics.

Bass also has taught at NYU Law's Center for Constitutional Transitions and at the Walter Leitner International Human Rights Clinic at Fordham Law School. She holds a bachelor's degree from Princeton University and a juris doctor from Harvard Law School, where she received the Kaufman Pro Bono Service Award.


Amanda Bennett, director, Voice of America

Amanda BennettVoice of America Director Amanda Bennett oversees the U.S. Agency for Global Media's largest organization, providing content in more than 45 languages to 236.6 million people each week on radio, television, mobile and the internet.

Bennett is a Pulitzer Prize-winning author, investigative journalist and editor, and she was named director of the Voice of America in March 2016. Through 2013, she was executive editor, Bloomberg News, where she created and ran a global team of investigative reporters and editors. She also was co-founder of Bloomberg News' Women's Project. She was editor of The Philadelphia Inquirer from June 2003 to November 2006, and prior to that was editor of the Herald-Leader in Lexington, Kentucky. She also served for three years as managing editor/projects for The Oregonian in Portland, and she served as a Wall Street Journal reporter for more than 20 years.

A graduate of Harvard College, she held numerous posts at the Journal, including auto industry reporter in Detroit in the late 1970s and early 1980s, Pentagon and State Department reporter, Beijing correspondent, management editor/reporter, national economics correspondent and chief of the Atlanta bureau until she moved to The Oregonian in 1998. She also has been a contributing columnist for The Washington Post.

Bennett shared the 1997 Pulitzer Prize for national reporting with her Journal colleagues, and in 2001 led a team from The Oregonian to a Pulitzer for public service. Projects by the Bloomberg Projects and Investigations team won numerous awards, including Loeb; Polk, Barlett & Steele; Headliners; Society of American Business Editors and Writers and Overseas Press Club Awards.

She was a member of the board of the Pulitzer Prizes from 2003 to 2011 and served as co-chair of the Pulitzer Board in 2010. She has served on the boards of the Loeb Awards, the American Society of News Editors and the Fund for Investigative Journalism. Additionally, she has served on the board of advisers of the Temple University Press; the board of directors of Axis Philly, a nonprofit local news site; and of the Rosenbach Museum, a Philadelphia museum of rare books.

Bennett is the author of six books, including In Memoriam (1998), co-authored with Terence B. Foley; The Man Who Stayed Behind (1993), co-authored with Sidney Rittenberg; Death of the Organization Man (1991) and The Quiet Room (1996), co-authored with Lori Schiller. The Cost of Hope, her memoir of the battle that she and her late husband Foley fought against his kidney cancer, was published in June 2012 by Random House.


Diana Burley, executive director and chair, Institute for Information Infrastructure Protection; professor of human and organizational learning, George Washington University

Diana BurleyDiana Burley, Ph.D., is executive director and chair of the Institute for Information Infrastructure Protection (I3P) and professor of human and organizational learning at George Washington University. Burley is a globally recognized cybersecurity workforce expert who regularly advises the public and private sector on cybersecurity policy, education and workforce development initiatives. She has testified before the U.S. Congress; conducted international cybersecurity training; and written more than 90 publications on cybersecurity, information sharing and IT-enabled change.

In 2018, she co-chaired the joint task force that published the first set of global cybersecurity curricular guidelines on behalf of the world's leading computing societies. Prior to GW, Burley led the Cyber Corps program and managed a multimillion dollar computer science education and research portfolio for the U.S. National Science Foundation. In 2017, SC Magazine recognized her as one of eight Women in IT Security to Watch and awarded her with their leadership award in IT Security Education. She is a member of the U.S. National Academies Board on Human-Systems Integration, and in 2014 she co-chaired the National Academies study on professionalizing the nation's cybersecurity workforce.

Other honors include: 2016 Woman of Influence by the Executive Women's Forum in Information Security, Risk Management and Privacy; 2014 Cybersecurity Educator of the Year; and 2014 Top Ten Influencer in information security careers.

Burley earned her doctorate in organization science and information technology from Carnegie Mellon University, where she studied as a Woodrow Wilson Foundation Fellow.


Andrew Conte, director, Center for Media Innovation, Point Park University

Andrew ConteAndrew Conte serves as founding director of the Center for Media Innovation at Point Park University and writes the Pittsburgh Public Editor column at NEXTpittsburgh. Previously, he worked as an investigative journalist, and he has authored several nonfiction books.

Most recently, Conte worked as an investigative reporter at the Tribune-Review, where he won numerous national, state and local awards. The Pennsylvania Society of Professional Journalists and the Press Club of Western Pennsylvania have recognized Conte with its top award four times. The Scripps Howard Foundation honored Conte with the William Brewster Styles Award for outstanding national business and economics reporting.

Conte's book, The Color of Sundays, explores the role of race in the National Football League and examines how the Pittsburgh Steelers identified undervalued players at historically black colleges and universities. The Independent Book Publishers Association recognized the book with a Silver Benjamin Franklin Award. Prior to that, Conte authored Breakaway, a best seller about how the Penguins hockey team built a championship franchise and a new arena. He also wrote All About Roberto Clemente, a children's book about the Pirates outfielder and Puerto Rican native.

Conte holds degrees from Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism and Dickinson College. He is pursuing a doctorate in community engagement at Point Park University.


Jim Crutchfield, president of the board, PublicSource

Jim CrutchfieldJim Crutchfield is the board president of PublicSource, Pittsburgh's nonprofit public service journalism site, and former president and publisher of the Akron Beacon Journal and Ohio.com.

At age 20, he started as a reporter for The Pittsburgh Press in 1968; became the public information officer for the Pittsburgh Model Cities Program; and then returned to reporting at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

In 1976, he moved to the Detroit Free Press, where he was a reporter, state capital bureau chief, editor and ultimately the deputy managing editor for news. He became Akron Beacon Journal managing editor in 1989 and senior vice president and executive editor at the Press-Telegram in Long Beach, California, in 1993. He came back east to Philadelphia Newspapers as assistant to the publisher and then as single copy circulation director. He returned to Akron as general manager in 2000, and he was named publisher the following year.

He was called one of Northeast Ohio's Power 100 leaders by Cleveland's Inside Business magazine in 2004, 2005 and 2006. He retired with the Akron Beacon Journal's 2006 sale. Additionally, he was a trustee of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation for 12 years.

A McKeesport, Pennsylvania, native raised in Pittsburgh's Hill District, Jim is a Schenley High School and Duquesne University graduate. He is a former Duquesne University board member and former associate professor of journalism at Duquesne. He also was on the faculty of Arizona State University and was the press secretary of former U.S. Senator Carl Levin of Michigan.


Alan Dershowitz, lawyer and scholar, Harvard University (via Skype)

Alan DershowitzProfessor Alan M. Dershowitz is a Brooklyn native who has been called "the nation's most peripatetic civil liberties lawyer" and one of its "most distinguished defenders of individual rights," "the best-known criminal lawyer in the world" and "the top lawyer of last resort." He joined the Harvard Law School faculty at age 25 and is currently the Felix Frankfurter Professor of Law, Emeritus, at Harvard Law School.

Dershowitz has published more than 1,000 articles in magazines, and he is the author of 36 fiction and non-fiction works with a worldwide audience, including the New York Times #1 bestseller Chutzpah and five other national bestsellers.  His autobiography, Taking the Stand: My Life in the Law, was published by Crown, a division of Random House.

His writing has been praised by Truman Capote, Saul Bellow, William Styron, David Mamet, Aharon Appelfeld, A.B. Yehoshua, Elie Wiesel, Richard North Patterson and Henry Louise Gests, Jr. More than one million of his books have been sold worldwide and translated into many languages.

Dershowitz has been the recipient of numerous academic awards, including a Guggenheim Fellowship for his work on human rights, a fellowship at The Center for the Advanced Study of Behavioral Sciences and several dean's awards for his books.

He has been the subject of two New Yorker cartoons, a New York Times crossword puzzle and a Trivial Pursuit question. Additionally, a sandwich at Fenway Park was named after him (pastrami, of course).

He is married to Carolyn Cohen, a Ph.D. psychologist.


Liza Donnelly, cartoonist and writer, The New Yorker and The New York Times; resident cartoonist, CBS News

Liza DonnellyLiza Donnelly is a writer and award-winning cartoonist with The New Yorker, where she has been drawing cartoons about culture and politics for more than 30 years. She is also resident cartoonist for CBS News, creating political cartoons and live-drawing for CBS This Morning and special events. In addition to writing and drawing for The New York Times and CNN opinion pages, she is a designated top writer and cartoonist for Medium in politics and feminism.

Donnelly has been a cultural envoy for the U.S. Department of State, traveling around the world to speak about freedom of speech, cartoons and women's rights, and her popular TED talk was translated into 38 languages and viewed online more than one million times. She has spoken at the United Nations in New York and Geneva, The New Yorker Festival, several TEDxes, colleges, universities, NGOs and corporate venues in the U.S. and abroad, and she was a visiting lecturer at Vassar College for four years.

Donnelly is a charter member of the international foundation Cartooning for Peace, and has written and spoken frequently about the role cartoons play in freedom of expression. The author of 18 books, Donnelly holds an honorary doctorate from University of Connecticut for her work in peace and women's studies. She is currently a distinguished fellow at Barnard College in New York City.


Luis Fábregas, editor, Tribune-Review Pittsburgh digital edition and Valley News Dispatch

Luis FábregasLuis Fábregas is editor of the Tribune-Review's Pittsburgh digital edition and the Valley News Dispatch, a daily newspaper based in Tarentum. For the past two years, Fábregas has been part of a senior management team that has led TribLIVE.com through dramatic growth in digital traffic. In August 2018, TribLIVE recorded more than a million more sessions for the month than its next closest competitor.

Fábregas' career in journalism extends more than two decades, including 15 years as an investigative reporter. He has written about hospital infections, health care economics and liver transplantation, and he has reported from Italy, Mexico and the operating rooms of UPMC.

Fábregas has held several management jobs at the Trib, including medical editor and deputy managing editor. His work has been recognized with national awards from the Association of Health Care Journalists and the National Association of Hispanic Journalists. He is a three-time recipient of the Ray Sprigle Memorial Award given by the Press Club of Western Pennsylvania. Fábregas obtained a master's degree in communications and a bachelor's degree in journalism from Duquesne University.


Noel Francisco, U.S. solicitor general

Noel John FranciscoNoel John Francisco was sworn in as the 48th solicitor general of the United States in September 2017. Prior to joining the Justice Department, he was a partner in the Washington, D.C., office of Jones Day, where he was the chair of the firm's government regulation practice. While at Jones Day, he appeared several times before the Supreme Court, including in McDonnell v. United States, which involved the meaning of "official act" under federal bribery statutes; Zubik v. Burwell, which involved the application of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act to regulations related to insurance coverage for contraception; and NLRB v. Noel Canning, which involved the Constitution's recess appointment power. He has also argued numerous cases in the lower federal and state courts on a wide range of constitutional, civil and criminal matters.

From 2001 to 2003, Francisco served in the Office of Counsel to the President as associate counsel to President George W. Bush, and from 2003 to 2005 he served as a deputy assistant attorney general in the U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Legal Counsel.

Francisco was raised in Oswego, N.Y. He received his bachelor's with honors in 1991 from the University of Chicago and a juris doctor with high honors in 1996 from the University of Chicago Law School. After law school, Francisco served as a law clerk to Judge J. Michael Luttig of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit before clerking for Associate Justice Antonin Scalia of the United States Supreme Court.


Amy Gajda, Class of 1937 Professor of Law, Tulane University Law School


Michael Gerhardt, Samuel Ashe Distinguished Professor of Constitutional Law, University of North Carolina School of Law  

Michael GerhardtMichael Gerhardt is Samuel Ashe Distinguished Professor of Constitutional Law at University of North Carolina School of Law, scholar in residence at the National Constitution Center and visiting scholar at the University of Pennsylvania Law School. He has served as a special counsel, consultant and expert witness on all major constitutional conflicts between the President and Congress for the past 25 years.

A noted author, he has written dozens of law review articles and six books, including Impeachment: What People Need to Know (Oxford University Press 2018). The New York Times praised his book, The Federal Appointments Process (Duke University Press 2000) as the principal guide used by the Bush administration for the confirmation hearings for Chief Justices John Roberts and Samuel Alito, Jr., and his books on the federal impeachment process and precedent have been widely cited as classics in their fields. The Financial Times selected his book, The Forgotten Presidents: Their Untold Constitutional Legacy, as one of the best non-fiction books of 2013.

Gerhardt has testified more than a dozen times before major congressional committees as a constitutional expert. In 1998, he was the only joint witness to testify before the House of Representatives during President Clinton's impeachment, and he was the only legal scholar invited to meet behind closed doors with the entire House of Representatives to discuss the federal impeachment process. Gerhardt also served as CNN's resident expert on the impeachment process during this time.

He has participated in the confirmation proceedings for six of the nine justices currently on the Supreme Court, including as special counsel to the Senate Judiciary Committee on the nominations of Sonia Sotomayor (2009), Elena Kagan (2010) and Neil Gorsuch (2017). He recently returned as special counsel to the Senate Judiciary Committee for the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh.

In 2015, the Library of Congress selected Gerhardt as the first independent scholar to help oversee and coordinate updates for the official United States Constitution Annotated.

Gerhardt received his bachelor's with honors from Yale University, a master's from the London School of Economics and a juris doctor with honors from the University of Chicago. He has given distinguished constitutional law lectures at universities around the world and is interviewed regularly by national media organizations.


Nancy Gibbs, former editor, TIME magazine

Nancy GibbsNancy Gibbs is the Edward R. Murrow Visiting Professor at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. From 2013 to 2017, she was editor in chief of TIME, directing breaking news and feature coverage across all platforms for more than 65 million readers worldwide. In 2016 she also was named editorial director of the Time Inc. News Group, overseeing TIME, Fortune, Life, Money and Time for Kids.

A nationally known thought leader on American politics and society, Gibbs was named TIME's 17th editor in September 2013, the first woman to hold the position. Under her leadership, TIME more than doubled its digital audience; won a primetime Emmy award for A Year in Space, a documentary produced with PBS; and launched new products including Red Border Films, LifeVR, Motto, Coinage, and TIME Health.

Gibbs is one of the most published writers in the history of TIME, having covered four presidential campaigns and written more cover stories (175+) than any other writer. Politico called her "the poet laureate of presidents," and the Chicago Tribune named her one of the top ten magazine writers in the country. Her story in the black-bordered special issue of TIME following the 9/11 attacks won the National Magazine award in 2002. She is a frequent guest on radio and television current affairs shows, a former consultant to CBS News and guest essayist for The News Hour with Jim Lehrer.

Gibbs co-authored two best-selling presidential histories with Michael Duffy: The President's Club: Inside the World's Most Exclusive Fraternity (2012), which spent 30 weeks on the New York Times bestseller list; and The Preacher and the Presidents: Billy Graham in the White House (2007). She has lectured extensively on the American presidency, including at the Bush, Reagan, Carter, Johnson and Truman libraries; the Aspen Institute; the Dallas World Affairs Club; the Commonwealth Club and the National Archives. She was the 2015 John F. Kennedy Fellow sponsored by Fulbright New Zealand. In November 2017 she delivered the Theodore H. White lecture at Harvard's Kennedy School.

Gibbs graduated from Yale summa cum laude with honors in history, and she has a degree in politics and philosophy from Oxford, where she was a Marshall Scholar. She has twice served as the Ferris Professor at Princeton, where she taught a seminar on politics and the press. She is a winner of the prestigious Matrix award, the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Newswomen's Club of New York, Folio's Top Women in Media and many other journalism awards.

Gibbs is co-chair of the Center on Communication Leadership and Policy at USC Annenberg, President of the American Friends of New College (Oxford) and a trustee of Chautauqua Institution.


Sam Gill, vice president, communities and impact, and senior adviser to the president, Knight Foundation

Sam Gill joined Knight Foundation in June 2015. There, he oversees the Community and National Initiatives program, which works to attract and nurture talent, promote economic opportunity and foster civic engagement in 26 communities across the United States. He also oversees the Learning and Impact program, which pursues research on the broader context of Knight's work and the impact of Knight-supported programs.

Gill earned a bachelor's with honors from the University of Chicago and a master's in philosophy in politics from the University of Oxford, where he was a Rhodes Scholar. He serves on the boards of the Phillip and Patricia Frost Museum of Science in Miami and the Miami-Dade Urban Debate League.


Richard Gingras, vice president of news, Google

Richard GingrasRichard Gingras is vice president of news at Google, a role that guides Google's strategy for how it surfaces news on Google search, Google News and its smart devices. He also oversees Google's effort to enable a healthy, open ecosystem for quality journalism, which includes Accelerated Mobile Pages, Subscribe with Google, the Trust Project and various other means to provide tools for journalists and news outlets.

In March 2018, Gingras announced the Google News Initiative, a global, $300 million effort to elevate quality journalism, explore new models for sustainability and provide technology to stimulate cost-efficiency in newsrooms.

Gingras has been involved in digital media since 1980 (or as he once put it, "since the days of steam-powered modems"). He helped found Salon.com​, where he once worked with Pulitzer Prize winner Glenn Greenwald. He also has worked at Apple​, the @Home Network​, the Excite portal and other digital ventures. He currently serves on the boards of the First Amendment Coalition; the International Center for Journalists; and the Shorenstein Center on the Press, Politics​ and Public Policy​ at Harvard University.


Ruth Bader Ginsburg, associate justice, U.S. Supreme Court (via video)


Thomas Hardiman, judge, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit

Thomas HardimanJudge Thomas Hardiman was nominated by President George W. Bush to the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit on Jan. 9, 2007 and was confirmed by the Senate (95-0) on March 15, 2007. Prior to becoming an appellate judge, he served as a trial judge on the United States District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania beginning in 2003. Before taking the bench, Hardiman was in private practice in Washington, D.C., from 1990 to1992 and in Pittsburgh from 1992 to 2003.

In 2008, Chief Justice John Roberts appointed Hardiman to the information technology committee of the Judicial Conference of the United States. Hardiman was appointed chairman of the IT committee in 2013, and he continues to serve in that capacity.

A member of the American Law Institute, Hardiman teaches a seminar on advanced constitutional law at Duquesne University School of Law. He is a 1987 graduate of the University of Notre Dame and a 1990 graduate of the Georgetown University Law Center, where he served as a notes and comments editor of the Georgetown Law Journal. Hardiman's chambers are in Pittsburgh, where he resides with his wife and three children.


Gen. Michael V. Hayden, former director, Central Intelligence Agency; former director, National Security Agency

Gen. Michael V. HaydenGen. Michael V. Hayden is a retired four-star general who served as director of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and the National Security Agency (NSA) when the course of world events was changing at a rapid rate. As head of the country's premier intelligence agencies, he was on the frontline of global change, the war on terrorism and the growing cyber challenge.

In addition to leading CIA and NSA, Hayden was the country's first principal deputy director of national intelligence and the highest-ranking military intelligence officer in the country. In all of these jobs, he worked to put a human face on American intelligence, explaining to the American people the role of espionage in protecting American security and American liberty.

Hayden has been a frequent expert and commentator on major news outlets and in top publications, valued for his expertise on intelligence matters like cyber security, government surveillance, geopolitics and more. He was featured in the HBO documentary Manhunt, which looked at espionage through the eyes of the insiders who led the secret war against Osama bin Laden, and in Showtime's The Spymasters, a detailed look at the directors of the CIA.

He speaks on the delicate balance between liberty and security in intelligence work, as well as the potential benefits and dangers associated with the cyber domain. As the former head of two multi-billion dollar enterprises, he can also address the challenges of managing complex organizations in times of stress and risk, and the need to develop effective internal and external communications.


Hugh Hewitt, radio and television commentator; professor of law, Chapman University Fowler School of Law

Hugh HewittHugh Hewitt is a lawyer, professor and broadcast journalist whose nationally syndicated radio show is heard in more than 120 cities across the United States every weekday morning. In addition to serving as a partner with the Los Angeles law firm of Larson O'Brien LLP, he is an analyst for NBC News and MSNBC, a columnist for The Washington Post and the author of more than a dozen books. Hewitt is a graduate of Harvard College and the University of Michigan Law School, and he has taught constitutional law at Chapman University Law School since its founding in 1995.


John Kasich, governor, Ohio (via video)


Suki Kim, author, Without You, There Is No Us: Undercover Among the Sons of North Korea's Elite; contributing editor, The New Republic

Suki KimSuki Kim is one of the only writers to ever go undercover in North Korea. An award-winning novelist, Kim's obsession with the country led her to pursue journalistic assignments there beginning in 2002. Kim visited the country five times over a decade, witnessing Kim Jong-il's 60th birthday celebrations and his death in 2011. Her six months in Pyongyang living and working as a teacher to the sons of North Korea's elite gave her unprecedented insights into the country's current state. Her work sheds new light on a place that has been, for the past 70 years, shrouded from the eyes of the world.

In her New York Times bestseller Without You, There Is No Us, Kim chronicles the time she spent in 2011 teaching the sons of North Korea's elite. Working in disguise as a Christian missionary, Kim spent her days at PUST locked in what she calls the school's "prison disguised as a campus," secretly recording everything she experienced on USB sticks.

Her talks delve into the realities of her day-to-day life in North Korea, drawing from her experiences to reveal the realities of what it's like to live in a world where everything is controlled, closely monitored and centered on a single "Great Leader." Kim had unprecedented access to a side of North Korean culture most foreigners never get to see, and her insights about the country's culture are as urgent as they are unsettling. Without You, There Is No Us has been praised by The New York Times Book Review, New York Review of Books, Wall Street Journal, Chicago Tribune and Foreign Policy, among others.

Kim's first novel, The Interpreter, was a finalist for a PEN Hemingway Prize, and her essays and articles have appeared in The New York Times, Harper's and The New York Review of Books. She has won a Fulbright and Guggenheim and George Soros' Open Society fellowships, and was featured on NPR's Morning Edition and Diane Rehm shows. She also has appeared on CNN's Fareed Zakaria and Christiane Amanpour shows and Jon Stewart's The Daily Show. Her 2015 TED Talk, for which she received a standing ovation, has drawn millions of viewers online. Fluent in Korean, she was born and raised in Seoul and now lives in New York.


Tony Norman, columnist, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Tony Norman has been a columnist at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette since 1996. During that time, he won dozens of national, state and regional awards, including the first place award for the National Society of Newspaper Columnists.

In 1999, Tony joined the Post-Gazette's editorial board and became an associate editor. In 2002, he began teaching journalism at Chatham University. He was later awarded a prestigious Knight-Wallace Journalism Fellowship at the University of Michigan. Norman became the Post-Gazette's book review page editor in 2012, and he left the Post-Gazette's editorial board in late 2016. He continues his columns and book review duties.


Lata Nott, executive director, First Amendment Center, Newseum

Lata NottLata Nott is executive director of the Freedom Forum Institute's First Amendment Center, which has offices at the Newseum in Washington, D.C., and at the John Seigenthaler Center on the Vanderbilt University campus in Nashville, Tennessee. Nott formerly was the assistant director of admissions at the Georgetown University Law Center, where she implemented strategies to increase diversity, promote the scholarship program for high-need students and integrate technology into the Law Center's recruitment efforts.

Previously, Nott was a litigator in New York City at the law firms of Proskauer Rose and Chadbourne & Parke. In addition to her commercial litigation practice, she maintained an active pro-bono practice focused on asylum cases, and she developed a proficiency in legal issues surrounding the internet, data privacy and cybersecurity, frequently contributing to Chadbourne & Parke's technology law blog. 

She graduated summa cum laude from the University of California, Davis with a bachelor's in international relations, and she was a member of Phi Beta Kappa honor society. She later earned her juris doctor from Columbia Law School in 2010. At Columbia, she was a staff editor on the Human Rights Law Review and chair of the South Asian Law Students Association. She remains an active member of the New York Bar and the American Bar Association.


James O'Keefe, investigative journalist; founder and CEO, Project Veritas


Elizaveta Osetinskaya, founder, The Bell, a media startup

Elizaveta OsetinskayaElizaveta Osetinskaya  is a fellow at UC Berkeley School of Journalism. She is an award-winning editor and media manager with more than 20 years of experience in Russian newsrooms. Osetinskaya was chief editor of RBC Media Holding, Russia's leading privately-owned media company. She and two other senior editors were fired weeks after RBC became the only major Russian news outlet to investigate the business ties of family members of President Vladimir Putin.

She also served as editor-in-chief of Forbes Russia. Early in her journalism career, she joined Vedomosti, which began as a joint venture between the Financial Times and The Wall Street Journal. She started as a correspondent, then became the energy and industry editor and editor-in-chief. 

She was a fellow in the John S. Knight Journalism Fellowship Program at Stanford University.

Osetinskaya founded and runs the Russian/English language media start-up theBell.io and YouTube video blog Russians are Okay!, where she interviews the Russian-speaking entrepreneurs who have achieved global success.


Shawn Peters, author and professor, University of Wisconsin, Madison; Wisconsin v. Yoder, Amish children attending school

Shawn PetersAn internationally recognized expert on religious liberty issues, Shawn Peters has been featured by CNN, PBS, Court TVTime magazine and The New York Times. He is the author of five books, including The Yoder Case: Religious Liberty, Education, and Parental Rights (University Press of Kansas). Peters holds master's degrees from the University of New Hampshire, the University of Iowa and the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He currently teaches in the Integrated Liberal Studies Program at UW-Madison.


Tom Ridge, former governor, Pennsylvania; former secretary, U.S. Department of Homeland Security

Tom RidgeTom Ridge is chairman of Ridge Global, LLC and The Ridge Global Cybersecurity Institute. He provides clients with solutions to cybersecurity, international security and risk management issues.

Following the tragic events of September 11, 2001, Ridge became the first Assistant to the President for Homeland Security, and on January 24, 2003, became the first Secretary of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS). The creation of the country's 15th cabinet department marked the largest reorganization of government since the Truman administration and another call to service for the former soldier, congressman and governor of Pennsylvania.

During his DHS tenure, Ridge worked with more than 180,000 employees from a combined 22 agencies to create an agency that facilitated the flow of people and goods; instituted layered security at air, land and seaports; developed a unified national response and recovery plan; protected critical infrastructure; integrated new technology; and improved information sharing worldwide. Ridge served as secretary of this historic and critical endeavor until February 1, 2005.

Before the events of September 11, Ridge was twice elected governor of Pennsylvania and served as the state's 43rd governor from 1995 to 2001. His aggressive technology strategy helped fuel the state's advances in economic development, education, health care and the environment. 

Ridge serves on the boards of the Institute for Defense Analyses, the Center for the Study of the Presidency and Congress and other private and public entities. He graduated from Harvard with honors. After his first year at Penn State University's Dickinson School of Law, he was drafted into the U.S. Army, where he served as an infantry staff sergeant in Vietnam, earning the Bronze Star for Valor, the Combat Infantry Badge and the Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry. After returning to Pennsylvania and to Dickinson, he earned his law degree and later became one of the first Vietnam combat veterans elected to the U.S. House of Representatives, where he served six terms.


Robert Rosenthal, former editor, The Philadelphia Inquirer; former managing editor, The San Francisco Chronicle; executive director, Center for Investigative Reporting

Robert RosenthalWithin a few months of becoming a copyboy at The New York Times, Robert Rosenthal was put on the team that was secretly working on The Pentagon Papers. That experience was the foundation of his values as a journalist. Rosenthal later worked at The Boston Globe as a reporter and The Philadelphia Inquirer, where he was a foreign correspondent in Africa and the Middle East.

He then served in various editing roles at The Inquirer and became its editor in January 1998. He was fired from that position four years later and soon after became managing editor of the The San Francisco Chronicle.

In January 2008 he joined The Center for Investigative Reporting (CIR) as executive editor. Rosenthal led CIR's growth into an internationally respected nonprofit acclaimed for its integrity; its culture of creativity, collaboration and innovation; and its public service journalism. He stepped down as executive director last year and is now on CIR's board. He also is on several other nonprofit journalism organization boards and is an advisor to others.


Paul Rosenzweig, senior fellow, R Street Institute; founder, Red Branch Consulting PLLC; senior advisor, The Chertoff Group; former deputy assistant secretary for policy, U.S. Department of Homeland Security

Paul RosenzweigPaul Rosenzweig is a senior fellow with the R Street Institute, where he works on legal and policy issues relating to cybersecurity, national security and tech policy, including the intersection of privacy and security.

In addition to his work at R Street, which he joined in November 2017, Rosenzweig continues to manage a small cybersecurity consulting company called Red Branch Consulting and teaches at the George Washington University School of Law. From 2005 to 2009, he was deputy assistant secretary for policy at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

Rosenzweig is the author of Cyber Warfare: How Conflicts in Cyberspace are Challenging America and Changing the World and of two video lecture series from The Great Courses: Thinking About Cybersecurity: From Cyber Crime to Cyber Warfare and The Surveillance State: Big Data, Freedom, and You.

He is co-author, with James Jay Carafano, of Winning the Long War: Lessons from the Cold War for Defeating Terrorism and Preserving Freedom and co-editor, with Timothy McNulty and Ellen Shearer, of two books: Whistleblowers, Leaks and the Media: The First Amendment and National Security, and National Security Law in the News: A Guide for Journalists, Scholars, and Policymakers.

Rosenzweig was a 2011 Carnegie Fellow in National Security Journalism at Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism. He received his bachelor's in chemistry from Haverford College, his master's in chemical oceanography from the University of California at San Diego's Scripps Institution of Oceanography and his juris doctor from the University of Chicago. A married father of two grown stepsons and eight grandchildren, Rosenzweig splits his time between Washington, D.C., and Atenas, Costa Rica.


David Shribman, executive editor, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

David ShribmanDavid Shribman became executive editor of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette on Feb. 3, 2003. Previously, he served as assistant managing editor, columnist and Washington bureau chief at The Boston Globe. He graduated summa cum laude from Dartmouth College with a bachelor's in history and was a member of the Phi Beta Kappa honor society. He completed graduate work in European and African history at The University of Cambridge as a Reynolds Scholar.

Shribman served as national political correspondent for The Wall Street Journal, covered Congress and national politics for The New York Times and was a member of the national staff of The Washington Star. A native of Salem, Massachusetts, he began his career at The Buffalo Evening News, where he worked on the city staff before he was assigned to the paper's Washington bureau. Currently, he writes a weekly, nationally syndicated column, My Point, and a biweekly column for the Globe and Mail in Canada.

Notably, Shribman received the Pulitzer Prize in 1995 for his coverage of Washington and the American political scene. He is an active panelist, including appearances on Washington Week, Face the Nation and Meet the Press. He is also a frequent analyst for the BBC and CBC.

Shribman's I Remember My Teacher, a tribute to the nation's great educators, was published in 2002. He has lectured at universities and colleges around the country and taught courses at the University of Notre Dame, Brandeis University, Virginia Commonwealth University and Gettysburg College. Additionally, he was a Poynter Fellow at Yale University and delivered the Lyndon Baines Johnson Distinguished Lecture at Southwest Texas State University and the Charles Hall Dillon Lecture at the University of South Dakota.

Shribman is an emeritus member of the board of trustees of Dartmouth College and the board of visitors of Dartmouth's Rockefeller Center for the Social Sciences. He is a member of the selection committee for the Profiles in Courage Award given by the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation and is chairman of the selection committee of the Elijah Parish Lovejoy Award given by Colby College. He also sits on the national board of the Calvin Coolidge Foundation and holds four honorary degrees.  


The Slants

The SlantsPortland's The Slants are the first and only all-Asian American dance rock band in the world. They offer catchy dance beats, strong hooks and a live show that is "not to be missed." The Willamette Week says, "While the band may well be best experienced live, Slants releases always promise a few blistering, note-perfect singles." The music is a combination of 1980s-driven synth pop with hard-hitting indie beats which fans affectionately refer to as "Chinatown dance rock."

They've been featured on more than 2,000 radio stations, television shows, magazines and web sites across 88 countries, most notably with Conan O'Brien's Team Coco, The Daily Show with Trevor Noah, Rolling Stone, Pitchfork, SPIN, BBC and NPR. The band is likely best known for their fight for free speech, which brought them before the Supreme Court of the United States.

Twenty-two international tours, including appearances in 46 of 50 states, have led to headlining showcases at major festivals such as SXSW, MusicfestNW, San Diego Comic-Con and Dragon Con. The band also has provided support for The Decemberists, Mindless Self Indulgence, Girl Talk, Apl.De.Ap (of Black Eyed Peas), Blindpilot and Shonen Knife.

In 2011, The Slants worked with the Department of Defense for a series of shows at U.S. and NATO bases in Eastern Europe, dubbed "Operation Gratitude." They've won album of the year and editor's choice from dozens of magazines, including Willamette Week, LA Weekly, Shojo Beat, Village Voice, City Beat and Rockwired.   


Stephen D. Solomon, Marjorie Deane Professor of Journalism, NYU; author, Revolutionary Dissent: How the Founding Generation Created the Freedom of Speech

Stephen SolomonStephen D. Solomon is Marjorie Deane Professor of Journalism at New York University. His latest book, Revolutionary Dissent: How the Founding Generation Created the Freedom of Speech (2016), explores how the raucous political protest of the nation's founding period gave meaning to the freedoms of speech and press at a time when it was a crime to criticize the government.

He is currently working on a book (Bloomsbury Press, expected in 2021) that will tell the narrative story of the birth of America's Bill of Rights. He is founding editor of FirstAmendmentWatch.org, which provides news, commentary and legal and historical context on current conflicts over freedom of expression.

Solomon is a graduate of Georgetown University Law Center. His earlier book, Ellery's Protest: How One Young Man Defied Tradition and Sparked the Battle Over School Prayer, explores the landmark 1963 case (Abington School District v. Schempp) in which the Supreme Court ruled that state-sponsored prayer and Bible reading in the public schools violated the First Amendment. He is co-author of Building 6: The Tragedy at Bridesburg, an exposé of the deaths of 54 men from respiratory cancer at a Fortune 500 chemical company in Philadelphia. It resulted in a $25 million settlement for the families. His work has been awarded the Hillman Prize, the Gerald Loeb Award and the John Hancock Award for Excellence.


Sree Sreenivasan, co-founder, Digimentors; former professor and associate dean, Columbia Journalism School

Sree SreenivasanSree Sreenivasan is a leading consultant, speaker and trainer for nonprofits, corporations, startups and executives. This year alone, he will lead more than 50 workshops in 25 cities and 10 countries. In 2018, Sreenivasan founded Digimentors with his long-time friend, Andrew Lih, to offer a new kind of digital consultancy of strategists, trainers, coaches and doers. Digimentors' client list includes the Pulitzer Prizes; UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency; Louvre Abu Dhabi; and Global Teacher Prize, which gives one K-12 teacher in the world $1 million.

Sreenivasan also has served as the chief digital officer of several major institutions, including the City of New York, Columbia University and The Metropolitan Museum of Art, where he led a 70-person team to keep the 150-year-old institution relevant in the smartphone age.

Before joining The Met, Sreenivasan spent 20 years as a full-time professor at Columbia University School of Journalism. He also taught a course on entrepreneurship at Columbia for four years with Ken Lerer, the co-founder of Huffington Post, chairman of Buzzfeed and co-founder of the venture firm LererHippeau.

Sreenivasan was named one of Fast Company's 100 Most Creative People in Business in 2015; the world's most influential chief digital officer by CDO Club in 2016; and one of Poynter's 35 most influential people in social media in 2010. He is a contributor to CNBC's Squawk Alley, appearing monthly to talk tech.   


Nadine Strossen, John Marshall Harlan II Professor of Law, New York Law School; former president, American Civil Liberties Union

Nadine Strossen, the John Marshall Harlan II Professor of Law at New York Law School, has written, taught and advocated extensively in constitutional law, civil liberties and international human rights. She is the immediate past president of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) (1991 to 2008), and now serves on the ACLU's National Advisory Council, as well as the national advisory boards of the Electronic Privacy Information Center, the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education and Heterodox Academy. When Strossen stepped down as ACLU president, Supreme Court Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Antonin Scalia and David Souter participated in her farewell/tribute luncheon.

The National Law Journal named Strossen one of America's 100 Most Influential Lawyers, and several other national publications have named her as one of the country's most influential women. She has received multiple honorary degrees and awards, including the American Bar Association's prestigious Margaret Brent Women Lawyers of Achievement Award in 2017.

Strossen has made thousands of presentations before diverse audiences, including appearances on more than 500 college and university campuses and in many countries. She has commented frequently on legal issues in the national media, and her more than 300 published writings have appeared in many scholarly and general interest publications.

Her book Defending Pornography: Free Speech, Sex, and the Fight for Women's Rights was named by the New York Times as a "notable book" of 1995. Additionally, her new book HATE:  Why We Should Resist it With Free Speech, Not Censorship (Oxford University Press 2018) has been strongly endorsed by ideologically diverse experts, including Professors Cornel West (Harvard) and Robert George (Princeton).


Teresa Sullivan, president emerita, University of Virginia

Teresa SullivanTeresa Sullivan is professor and president emeritus of the University of Virginia (UVA). As president, she led a team that stimulated the revitalization of the UVA Health System, raised faculty salaries, launched an ambitious program of faculty hiring, increased the quantity and quality of applications, reached new fundraising records and launched the University's bicentennial celebration. Earlier, she served as executive vice president and provost of the University of Michigan, executive vice chancellor for academic affairs for University of Texas System and vice president and graduate dean at The University of Texas at Austin.

In her academic career as a demographer, she developed analytic techniques for the use of U.S. census public use sample. She was an investigator on a large international sample survey, and with law colleagues Elizabeth Warren and Jay Lawrence Westbrook she led several original large-scale data collections of consumer bankruptcy records. The first book-length analysis of the bankruptcy records, As We Forgive Our Debtors, received the Silver Gavel Award of the American Bar Association. The second book, The Fragile Middle Class, received the Writing Award of the American College of Financial Services Lawyers.

The recipient of five major teaching awards, Sullivan held faculty positions at the Universities of Chicago, Texas, Michigan and Virginia. She is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Additionally, she is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Michigan State University and holds a doctorate from the University of Chicago.


Simon Tam, The Slants

Simon TamSimon Tam is an author, musician, activist and self-proclaimed troublemaker. He is best known as the founder and bassist of The Slants, the world's first and only all-Asian American dance rock band. His work has been highlighted in more than 3,000 media features across 150 countries, including The Daily Show with Trevor Noah, NPR, New York Times and Rolling Stone.

Tam has been a keynote speaker, performer and presenter at TEDx, SXSW, Comic-Con, the Department of Defense, Stanford University and more than 1,200 events across four continents. Notably, he set a world record by appearing on the TEDx stage 13 times, and he was named a champion of diverse issues by the White House and worked with President Barack Obama's campaign to fight bullying. He recently helped expand freedom of speech by winning a unanimous victory at the Supreme Court of the United States for a landmark case in constitutional and trademark law, Matal v. Tam.

Tam designed one of the first college-accredited social media and digital marketing certificates in the United States. His approach to diversity, inclusion and marketing has been taught to hundreds of Fortune 500 companies, leading Bloomberg Businessweek to call him a "social media rock star." In other recognition, Forbes says his resume is a "paragon of completeness."

Tam has received a number of accolades for his work, including milestone case of the year from Managing IP Magazine, the Mark T. Banner award from the American Bar Association, the Hugh M. Hefner First Amendment Award and distinguished alum award from Marylhurst University. In addition, he was named a Freedom Fighter by the Roosevelt Freedom Fighters, citizen of the year by the Chinese American Citizens Alliance and Portland rising star from the Light a Fire Awards. He serves as board chair for The Slants Foundation and the APANO United Communities Fund, and he is a member/advisor for multiple nonprofit organizations dedicated to social justice and the arts.


David A. Thomas, president, Morehouse College


Mary Beth Tinker, free speech plaintiff and First Amendment activist; Tinker v. DeMoines, black arm bands in schools protesting war

Mary Beth TinkerAs an eighth grade student in 1965, Mary Beth Tinker and a group of students were suspended from school for wearing black arm bands to mourn the Vietnam war dead. A court challenge by the American Civil Liberties Union led to a landmark 1969 Supreme Court ruling in Tinker v. Des Moines that neither teachers nor students "shed their constitutional rights... at the schoolhouse gate."

After the court victory, Tinker became a nurse, earning master's degrees in nursing and public health. Speaking frequently throughout the country with students, teachers, school administrators and community groups, Tinker is currently on a national "Tinker Tour" to promote civics education, the rights of students and youth voices. She lives in Washington, D.C.


Juan Williams, Fox News contributor

Juan WilliamsJuan Williams is one of America's leading political writers and thinkers. He is a top political analyst for Fox Television, co-host of the daily talk show The Five and a regular panelist for Fox News Sunday and Special Report. He is a former award-winning Washington Post columnist, White House correspondent and NPR senior news correspondent. He also was the host of NPR's nationally broadcast afternoon talk show.

In addition to prize-winning op-ed columns and editorial writing for The Washington Post, he has authored seven books, including three best sellers. His notable books include Eyes on the Prize,"Thurgood Marshall -- American Revolutionary and Muzzled: The Assault on Honest Debate. 

His stirring, insightful speeches make him one of the nation's leading public intellectuals. Williams has interviewed President Obama, President Bush, President Clinton, President George H.W. Bush and President Reagan, as well as the nation's leading governors, mayors, corporate leaders, artists and Supreme Court Justices.

Williams' most recent book was 2011 Muzzled: The Assault on Honest Debate. The inside story of his controversial firing from NPR made the New York Times bestseller list.

His previous book, the 2006 New York Times bestseller, Enough: The Phony Leaders, Dead-End Movements and Culture of Failure That Are Undermining Black America - and What We Can Do About It, created a national furor by igniting debate with point blank analysis of black leadership in this country. He combines a bold, perceptive, solution-based look at African American life, culture and politics with an impassioned clarion call to do the right thing now and not lose sight of the true values of the Civil Rights Movement.

He also is the author of the bestselling book Eyes on the Prize - America's Civil Rights Years. It is a groundbreaking work of American history which has remained in print for 25 years. The book accompanied the celebrated PBS series on the Civil Rights movement. It is now part of the standard history curriculum in many colleges and universities.

He also is the author of the critically acclaimed biography of the nation's first African American Supreme Court Justice, titled Thurgood Marshall: American Revolutionary. It was selected by The New York Times as a notable book of the year. Time magazine described American Revolutionary as a "magisterial" work of American history, and the book was reissued in 2004 with a new epilogue to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Supreme Court's historic Board vs. Brown decision.

Williams also is the author of My Soul Looks Back in Wonder, stirring eyewitness accounts of historic equal rights movements ranging from expanding opportunities for women, the disabled, Hispanics and blacks. His other books include I'll Find a Way or Make One, A History of Historically Black Colleges and Universities and This Far By Faith, a history of the black religious experience in America, which was accompanied by a six-part PBS series.

As one of the nation's most influential journalists, Williams is in constant contact with American political leaders - from the president to members of Congress and the Supreme Court. His understanding of American history and his inside access to Washington politics give him a unique and informed voice as an analyst of current events. In 2000, NPR selected Williams to host their afternoon talk show, Talk of The Nation, and in two years he brought the show's ratings to record heights. His daring perspectives on American politics, race and culture are based on his historical understanding, political expertise and knowledge of diversity.

Prior to writing bestsellers, Williams was a political columnist and national correspondent for The Washington Post. In a 21-year career at The Post, he served as an editorial writer, op-ed columnist, prize-winning investigative reporter, top magazine writer and White House correspondent. He won several journalism awards for his writing and investigative reporting. He also won an Emmy Award for TV documentary writing. He was given widespread, critical acclaim for a series of documentaries including Politics -- The New Black Power.  His documentary on A. Phillip Randolph was featured nationally on PBS.

Williams has appeared on TV news programs, including Meet the Press; Oprah; Arsenio; Inside Washington Crossfire, where he served as a co-host; and America's Black Forum, which he hosted for a decade. ESPN featured Williams as a commentator for their series on top athletes of the 20th century.

Williams also has written for The New Yorker, Atlantic Monthly, GQ, New Republic and Ebony.  


Jason Willick, assistant editorial features editor, The Wall Street Journal

Jason WillickJason Willick is an assistant features editor for The Wall Street Journal opinion section in New York, where he also contributes reporting and commentary on politics and social issues. Before joining The Journal last year, he was a staff writer at The American Interest magazine in Washington, D.C.

In addition, his writing has appeared in the Washington Post, National Affairs, New York Magazine, National Review and Modern Age. In 2017, he was a Robert Novak Journalism Fellow. He also was named to the Forbes "30 under 30" list for policy in 2017. Willick is a graduate of Stanford University, where he majored in history and was the editor of the Stanford Political Journal.  


Robert Zimmer, president, University of Chicago

Robert Zimmer is the 13th president of the University of Chicago. Prior to his appointment, Zimmer was a University of Chicago faculty member and administrator for more than two decades, specializing in the mathematical fields of geometry, particularly ergodic theory, Lie groups and differential geometry. As a University of Chicago administrator, Zimmer served as chairman of the mathematics department, deputy provost and vice president for research.

Zimmer also served as provost at Brown University from 2002 to 2006, when he returned to Chicago to become president of the university. As president, he serves as chair of the board of governors of Argonne National Laboratory; chair of the board of directors of Fermi Research Alliance LLC, the operator of Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory; and chair of the board of trustees of the Marine Biological Laboratory. He is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He was a member of the National Science Board, the governing body of the National Science Foundation, from 2011 to 2016 and also served on the President's Committee on the National Medal of Science from 2008 to 2010.

Zimmer is the author of two books, Ergodic Theory and Semisimple Groups (1984) and Essential Results of Functional Analysis (1990), and more than 80 mathematical research articles. He served on the board of mathematical sciences of the National Research Council from 1992 to 1995, and was on the executive committee from 1993 to 1995. Zimmer held the title of Max Mason Distinguished Service Professor of Mathematics at Chicago before leaving for Brown, where he was the Ford Foundation Professor of Mathematics.

He earned his bachelor's, summa cum laude, from Brandeis University in 1968 and a doctorate in mathematics from Harvard University in 1975 before joining the Chicago faculty as an L.E. Dickson Instructor of Mathematics in 1977. He also was on the faculty of the U.S. Naval Academy from 1975 to 1977 and has held visiting positions at Harvard University and at institutions in Israel, France, Australia, Switzerland and Italy.

Zimmer has honorary degrees from Tsinghua University and Colby College. In 2017 he was given the Philip Merrill Award for Outstanding Contributions to Liberal Arts Education by the American Council of Trustees and Alumni. He is a frequent commentator on free expression and academic freedom.


Salena Zito, contributor, CNN; reporter, Washington Examiner; columnist, New York Post   Contact