Contributors

RAISING FREETHINKERS

JAN DEVOR holds a BA and MA in education from the University of Michigan. She taught middle school for thirteen years and then embarked on a seventeen year career as Director of Religious Education with Unitarian Universalists congregations in Concord, MA and Minneapolis, MN, where she is currently serving the First Unitarian Society. Jan has been credentialed at the Masters Level in religious education by the Unitarian Universalist Association and has co-taught a graduate level class at United Theological Seminary in religious education theory, philosophy and practice. She and her husband have raised two Unitarian Universalist freethinkers.

DALE McGOWAN is a freelance writer and humanist parenting educator in Atlanta. Creator of the secular parenting blog The Meming of Life, Dale is also executive director of Foundation Beyond Belief, a humanist educational and charitable foundation. In 2008, Dale was named Harvard Humanist of the Year.

MOLLEEN MATSUMURA has been a humanist activist and writer for over 20 years. She has worked to defend reproductive freedom, separation of religious and government, evolution education, and marriage equality. Her writing has appeared in Free Inquiry, New Humanist (UK), Humanistic Judaism, and Reports of the National Center for Science Education, among other publications. Molleen has been a project director for the National Center for Science Education and currently serves on the advisory boards of the Secular Student Alliance and Americans United for Separation of Church and State. She writes the humanist advice column, Sweet Reason; some past columns can be found at www.sweetreason.org or in the Parenting section of the website of the Institute for Humanist Studies (www.humaniststudies.org).

AMANDA METSKAS is the Executive Director of Camp Quest, Inc. (www.camp-quest.org). She has been involved with Camp Quest since 2003 and served on the board of directors since 2004. Amanda has been a counselor at Camp Quest Ohio, Camp Quest Michigan, Camp Quest West, Camp Quest Smoky Mountains, and Camp Quest Minnesota. While at camp, Amanda leads educational activities on critical thinking, debate, and international relations. During the rest of the year, she works on coordinating and promoting Camp Quest programs from her office at the Camp Quest headquarters in the Institute for Humanist Studies. Amanda holds a B.A. from Brown University in international relations and psychology and an M.A. in political science from Ohio State University. Her co-authored essay about Camp Quest appears in Parenting Beyond Belief.

PARENTING BEYOND BELIEF

NORM R. ALLEN, JR. is the executive director of African Americans for Humanism (AAH), editor of the AAH Examiner, the international newsletter of AAH, and deputy editor of Free Inquiry magazine. Allen has edited two books: African American Humanism — An Anthology and The Black Humanist Experience: An Alternative to Religion.

DONALD B. ARDELL, PhD publishes the Ardell Wellness Report (AWR), a quarterly newsletter in continuous circulation since 1984, as well as the weekly electronic AWR, with 350 editions in circulation. He is director of the largest wellness website, SeekWellness.com. His first book in 1977, High Level Wellness: An Alternative to Doctors, Drugs and Disease is credited with starting the wellness movement.

DAN BARKER is the author of Losing Faith in Faith: From Preacher To Atheist. He is co-president of the Freedom From Religion Foundation in Madison, Wisconsin, an organization working to keep state and church separate and to promote freethought, and co-host of Air America's Freethought Radio program. He has five children.

AUGUST E. BRUNSMAN IV has been a leader in the campus freethought movement since he co-founded Students For Freethought at the Ohio State University in 1997. He is Director of Camp Quest and Executive Director of the Secular Student Alliance, which educates high school and college students around the U.S. about the value of scientific reason and the intellectual basis of secularism.

ED BUCKNER, PhD holds a Ph.D. in Educational Leadership from Georgia State University and has been a professor, a school administrator, and executive director of the Council for Secular Humanism. He and his wife Lois Bright have edited several books and published Oliver Halle's Taking the Harder Right (2006). He is currently President of American Atheists.

MATT CHERRY is the former executive director of the Institute for Humanist Studies, which serves as a resource for and about the freethought movement, author of Introduction to Humanism: A Primer on the History, Philosophy, and Goals of Humanism, and vice-president of the NGO Committee on Freedom of Religion or Belief at the United Nations.

SHANNON CHERRY, APR, MA, is the president of Cherry Communications and its subsidiary Be Heard Solutions. Shannon publishes the highly-recommended ezine, Be Heard! and is the co-author of Become Your Own Great and Powerful: A Woman's Guide to Living Your Real Big Life. She and partner Matt have twin girls.

AMANDA CHESWORTH is Educational Director for the Committee for the Scientific Investigations of the Paranormal (CSICOP). Her work includes the Inquiring Minds Program, Camp Inquiry, Imaginary Worlds, and serving as editor of Darwin Day Collection One.

Oxford ethologist RICHARD DAWKINS, FRS is among the most accomplished and celebrated living contributors to science and its popular understanding. His first book, The Selfish Gene (1976), became an immediate international bestseller, followed by the seminal classic The Blind Watchmaker. His other bestsellers include River Out of Eden, Climbing Mount Improbable, and Unweaving the Rainbow, and The God Delusion. In 2005, a Prospect Magazine poll named Dawkins the third most influential public intellectual in the world. Dawkins is a Fellow of both the Royal Society and the Royal Society of Literature. Since 1996 he has served as Vice President of the British Humanist Association. He is married to actress Lalla Ward and has one daughter, Juliet.

MARGARET DOWNEY founded the Freethought Society of Greater Philadelphia (FSGP) and the Anti-Discrimination Support Network, and the Thomas Paine Memorial Committee. She is editor of The Greater Philadelphia Story, a newsletter written by and for the Atheist community. She is also a Secular Humanist Celebrant and past president of Atheist Alliance International.

TOM FLYNN is editor of Free Inquiry, the world's largest-circulation English language secular humanist magazine, and author of books including The Trouble with Christmas (1993), the novels Galactic Rapture (2000) and Nothing Sacred (2004), and editor of the forthcoming New Encyclopedia of Unbelief.

ANNE NICOL GAYLOR is a founder and president emerita of the Freedom From Religion Foundation. She served as executive director from 1978 to 2005 and is now a consultant to the Foundation.

ANNIE LAURIE GAYLOR co-founded the Freedom From Religion Foundation with her mother, Anne Nicol Gaylor, in 1976. With Dan Barker, she is co-president of the Freedom From Religion Foundation. She is editor of FFRF's newspaper, Freethought Today and author of Woe to the Women: The Bible Tells Me So, Betrayal of Trust: Clergy Abuse of Children, and Women Without Superstition: No Gods - No Masters, an anthology of women freethinkers (1997). She and Dan have one daughter.

The REV. DR. KENDYL GIBBONS is the senior minister of the First Unitarian Society of Minneapolis. She is co-dean of The Humanist Institute (a leadership training program created by the North American Committee for Humanism), is active in the interfaith clergy community of Minneapolis, and serves as an adjunct faculty member of Meadville/Lombard in Chicago and the United Theological Seminary in the Twin Cities.

EDGAR YIPSEL "YIP" HARBURG, among the greatest and most beloved lyricists of the 20th century, was also author of such classics as "Somewhere Over the Rainbow," "Brother, Can You Spare a Dime?", "April in Paris" and "Paper Moon."

JIM HERRICK has worked for thirty years in the humanist movement in the UK. He is former editor of the New Humanist and International Humanist. His writings include "Vision and Realism: a hundred years of The Freethinker," Against the Faith: Some Deists, Skeptics and Atheists and Humanism: An Introduction. He is a co-founder of the Gay and Lesbian Humanist Association.

AMY HILDEN, PhD received her doctorate in Philosophy, with a supporting program in Feminist Studies, from the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. Her current scholarly interests include developing arguments in support of reclaiming the Enlightenment values of free and independent thinking, rationality, and a humanistic understanding of progress. She lives with her husband and two teenage children in Minneapolis.

Better known as "Agnostic Mom" online, NOELL HYMAN contributes monthly columns to the Humanist Network News, the weekly e-zine for the Institute for Humanist Studies, and is an expert writer for the website ClubMom. An energetic mother of three young children, Noell and husband Israel are currently involved with numerous podcasting and blogging ventures.

PENN JILLETTE is the Emmy Award-winning illusionist / entertainer / debunker of the duo Penn & Teller. Author of several books, star and producer of such films as The Aristocrats and Penn & Teller Get Killed, Jillette's current efforts are split between a live national talk show, the Showtime series Bullshit! and a daily live show in Las Vegas. Penn is married to producer Emily Zolten Jillette, with whom he has two young children, Moxie (born in 2005) and Zolten (born in 2006).

ROBERT E. KAY, MD is a retired psychiatrist who graduated from Tufts University Medical School and did his residency at Walter Reed General Hospital. After serving in the Army, he settled in Philadelphia where he has treated both adults and children in many different inpatient and outpatient settings.

BOBBIE KIRKHART is a former Sunday school teacher whose first national publication was in Christianity Today. She is currently vice president of the Secular Coalition for America and has served as co-president of Atheists United and as president of the Atheist Alliance International.

DAVID KOEPSELL, JD, PhD is a philosopher and lawyer specializing in research ethics, meta-ethics, society and politics. As executive director of the Council for Secular Humanism, he lectures and speaks to the media on issues of secularism, freedom of conscience, and civil rights.

STEPHEN LAW, D.Phil. is lecturer in philosophy at Heythrop College, University of London and editor of THINK, the Royal Institute of Philosophy's new popular journal. He is the author of several popular introductions to philosophy, including an illustrated children's introduction to philosophy titled The Philosophy Files -- The Guardian's number two best-selling British title for the year 2000.

KRISTAN LAWSON is a writer and entrepreneur. Founder and publisher of Jolly Roger Press in the 1990s, Kristan is also a renowned travel expert, authoring several major travel guides for California and Europe.

GARETH MATTHEWS, PhD is Professor of Philosophy (emeritus) at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. He is also the author of three books on philosophy and childhood that have been translated into a dozen languages, including the influential classic The Philosophy of Childhood. Gary has three children and six grandchildren.

DALE McGOWAN is a freelance writer and humanist parenting educator in Atlanta. Creator of the secular parenting blog The Meming of Life, Dale is also executive director of Foundation Beyond Belief, a humanist educational and charitable foundation. In 2008, Dale was named Harvard Humanist of the Year.

JEAN MERCER, PhD is a developmental psychologist with a doctorate from Brandeis University and is Professor Emerita at Richard Stockton College in New Jersey. She has been a Board member and officer of the New Jersey Association for Infant Mental Health for many years and is the author of a number of books and articles about early development.

AMANDA K. METSKAS received her M.A. in political science from The Ohio State University in 2005. She has been involved with Camp Quest Classic (Ohio) since 2003, and is currently serving as the President of the Camp Quest Classic Board of Directors.

THE REV. ROBERTA M. NELSON, DD is Emeritus Minister of Religious Education at the Cedar Lane Unitarian Universalist Church in Bethesda, Maryland. She is coauthor of the curricula Parents as Resident Theologians, Parents as Social Justice Educators, and Parents as Spiritual Guides.

At age nine, EMILY ROSA produced a study on Therapeutic Touch that was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, creating a media sensation that put her in the Guinness Book of World Records as the youngest person to publish serious medical research. She recently finished two years of university at CU-Boulder with an academic interest in forensic psychology.

Grammy Award-winning comedian JULIA SWEENEY is also an actor, playwright and monologist. Her monologue Letting Go of God, which chronicles her journey from faith to philosophical naturalism, was Critics' Choice for the Los Angeles Times and Pick of the Week for the LA Weekly. She is the author of My Beautiful Loss Of Faith Story and was the 2006 recipient of the Richard Dawkins Award for raising public awareness of the nontheistic life stance. She is the adoptive mother of a seven-year old girl named Mulan.

STU TANQUIST is a national speaker, seminar leader and published author with over 20 years of experience in the learning and development industry. He facilitates learning on variety of topics including critical thinking. Stu holds three degrees including an M.S. in Management.

Bronx-born Coloradoan PETE WERNICK, PhD earned a doctorate in Sociology from Columbia University while developing a career in music on the side. His bestselling instruction book Bluegrass Banjo allowed "Dr. Banjo" to leave his sociology research job at Cornell to form Hot Rize, a classic bluegrass band that traveled worldwide. An atheist since age fifteen, Pete was president of the Family of Humanists from 1997 to 2006.

A lifelong agnostic, JANE WYNNE WILLSON has served as president of the London-based International Humanist and Ethical Union and Vice-President of the British Humanist Association. She is the author of Parenting Without God, New Arrivals, Sharing the Future, and Funerals Without God. A retired Special Needs teacher with four children and ten grandchildren, Jane has a deep interest in bringing up children happily with a strong basis for morality but no religion.


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