Democracy Convention Peace and Democracy Speakers

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Main page of Peace and Democracy Conference.

Democracy Convention.

Karin Aguilar-San Juan
Together with Frank Joyce, Karín Aguilar-San Juan co-edited and introduced THE PEOPLE MAKE THE PEACE: LESSONS FROM THE VIETNAM ANTIWAR MOVEMENT (Just World Books 2015). She teaches American Studies at Macalester College, where her courses include “U.S. Imperialism from the Philippines to Vietnam” and “Critical Prison Studies.” When she is not prepping for class, she is working on a film, practicing tai chi, riding her bicycle around the Twin Cities, or entertaining the two border collies she shares with her spouse Sharon Haire.

Michael Albert
Michael Albert is a founder and current member of the staff of Z Magazine as well as staff of Z Magazine’s web system: ZCom (www.zmag.org). Albert’s radicalization occurred during the 1960s. His political involvements, starting then and continuing to the present, have ranged from local, regional, and national organizing projects and campaigns to co-founding South End Press, Z Magazine, the Z Media Institute, and ZNet, and to working on all these projects, writing for various publications and publishers, giving public talks, etc. Albert is the author of 21 books. Most recently these include: Fanfare for the Future (ZBooks), Remembering Tomorrow (Seven Stories Press), Realizing Hope (Zed Press) and Parecon: Life After Capitalism (Verso). Many of Albert’s articles are stored in ZCom and can be accessed there along with hundreds of other Z Magazine and ZNet articles essays, interviews, etc. You can find lots of videos of his presentation, etc., on You Tube.

Suzanne Al-Kayali
Hailing from Fargo, ND — Suzanne asked the question ‘Why?’ all too often as a child. She remembers always making pictures of world peace when her classmates were drawing mom and dad. Between her Palestinian background and interest in national politics, she found answers while earning her Bachelor’s degree is Sociology and Political Science with a minor in Gender Studies at Minnesota State University Moorhead. Wanting to conduct original research about the experience of gender in militarized settings, she went on to her Master’s Degree in Sociology with an emphasis in Women and Gender Studies at Roosevelt University in Chicago. When she isn’t working with WAMM (Women Against Military Madness), she is at a bookstore, listening to her vinyl collection, or at a music festival.

Marna Anderson
Marna Anderson is a nonprofit leader with expertise in organizational effectiveness and major donor fundraising. She has served organizations focused on human rights, conservation and violence against women and children. She traveled extensively in Central America during times of conflict in the late 1980s and lived in El Salvador for four years after the Peace Accords were signed. While in El Salvador she worked in a repatriated community on economic development projects for women and helped establish a program educating women and girls on domestic violence. Marna holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Communications and Anthropology and a Master’s Degree in Organizational Leadership.

Roxane Assaf
After a year as a West Bank correspondent for the DC-based Washington Report on Middle East Affairs, Roxane Assaf broadened her Chicago activism to include issues of war, climate, racism, social justice, economy, civil liberties and foreign policy. Roxane has held leadership positions in peace organizations including the American Friends Service Committee and for three years worked as Director of Outreach and Communications for CAPA, the Chicago affiliate of Peace Action, the nation’s largest grassroots peace and justice organization based in Washington, DC. After finishing a master’s degree from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism for which she reported from Capitol Hill in both print and broadcast media (Durham Herald-Sun, Arms Control Today, WATD Radio Boston, and the CBS TV affiliate in Monroe, Louisiana), she co-authored the 5th edition of the Lonely Planet travel guidebook Israel and the Palestinian Territories. Now “Roxane Assaf-Lynn,” Roxane teaches journalism at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and video reporting at North Park University with a focus on citizen journalism, periodically co-leading study abroad courses in the Middle East for Elmhurst College. She directs and edits short videos, produces videographic presentations for clients, and works behind the scenes in social networking, publicity and promotion for individual artists and organizations. Roxane writes commissioned articles for the Huffington Post. In 2003 she was named National 1st Place winner of the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ) “Mark of Excellence Award” in Television General News Reporting. As a performing artist herself, Roxane volunteers for lively arts organizations in theatre and music in addition to supporting peace and social justice initiatives.  She is passionate about media reform and raising the volume on alternative voices.

Betsy Barnum
With more than 15 years doing workshops and presentations about how “we the people” can become truly empowered democratic citizens and end the legal structures that allow corporations to cause harm to people, nature and communities, Betsy worked with WILPF’s “Corporations vs. Democracy” program in the early 2000s. She advocates for Community Rights, a social movement that encourages local law-making to protect people and ecosystems from corporate harm. The movement’s principles of grassroots democracy, rights for nature and empowerment of communities to enact policies for a better world all are applicable to local work for peace in many ways, from establishing nonviolent local justice system policies to enforcing divestment from war industries. She now works primarily with the Green Party and an emerging organization called Commuity Rights GroundWork that seeks to help local citizens recover their political self-esteem.

medeaMedea Benjamin
Medea Benjamin is a cofounder of both CODEPINK and the international human rights organization Global Exchange. Benjamin is the author of eight books. Her latest book is  Drone Warfare: Killing by Remote Control, and she has been campaigning to stop the use of killer drones. Her direct questioning of President Obama during his 2013 foreign policy address, as well as her recent trips to Pakistan and Yemen, helped shine a light on the innocent people killed by US drone strikes. Benjamin has been an advocate for social justice for more than 30 years. Described as “one of America’s most committed — and most effective — fighters for human rights” by New York Newsday, and “one of the high profile leaders of the peace movement” by the Los Angeles Times, she was one of 1,000 exemplary women from 140 countries nominated to receive the Nobel Peace Prize on behalf of the millions of women who do the essential work of peace worldwide. In 2010 she received the Martin Luther King, Jr. Peace Prize from the Fellowship of Reconciliation and the 2012 Peace Prize by the US Peace Memorial. She is a former economist and nutritionist with the United Nations and World Health Organization.

Leah Bolger
Leah Bolger serves as the Chair of the Coordinating Committee of  World Beyond War. She retired from the U.S. Navy at the rank of Commander after twenty years of active duty service. She was elected as the first female President of Veterans For Peace (VFP) in 2012, and in 2013 was selected to present the Ava Helen and Linus Pauling Memorial Peace Lecture at Oregon State University. She is the Chair of the VFP working group on drones, and is the Coordinator of the Drones Quilt Project. She founded the Corvallis Branch of the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF) in January 2014. She is also a Board member of the War Prevention Initiative.

Tom Bottolene
Co-organizer of the weekly AlliantACTION vigil. Between 1998 and 2011, facilitated over 700 nonviolent arrests and accompanying legal consequences at what was Minnesota based largest military contractor: Alliant Techsystems (ATK). Civil Didobedience convicted felon. SOAWatch Prisoner of Conscience 2000.

Pepperwolf
Retired educator and librarian. Co- organizer of AlliantACTION. Editor of paper handout of weekly CircleVision for the weekly vigil. Nonviolence trainer (in MN) for SOAWatch vigils. Former board member and former director and current member of WAMM (Women Against Military Madness).

Marie Braun
Marie Braun lives in Minneapolis, MN. She is a long time peace and justice activist and has been a member of Women Against Military Madness (WAMM) for 35 years. Following a trip to Iraq in 1998, she became involved in grassroots organizing against the sanctions and later against the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, and Syria and in protesting many other U.S. threats of war. Marie was awarded the Activist of the Year Award by Minnesota Alliance for Progressive Action (MAPA) in 2003; and more recently received the Augsburg College Courageous Woman Award. She, together with herhusband, John, also received the Fellowship of Reconciliation (FOR) Peacemakers of the Year awardand the Vincent L. Hawkinson Peace and Justice award. She is currently spearheading the WAMM Campaign to Ban Nuclear Weapons and is involved in several local peace and justice coalitions.

Mary Dean
Mary Dean is Organizer at World Beyond War. She worked previously for various social justice and antiwar organizations, including leading delegations to Afghanistan, Guatemala, and Cuba. Mary also traveled on human rights delegations to several other war zones, and has done volunteer accompaniment in Honduras. In addition she worked as a paralegal for prisoner rights, including initiating a bill in Illinois to limit solitary confinement. In the past, Mary spent six months in federal prison for nonviolently protesting the U.S. Army School of the Americas, or School of Assassins as it is commonly known in Latin America. Her other experience involves organizing various nonviolent direct actions, and going to jail a number of times for civil disobedience to protest nuclear weapons, end torture and war, close down Guantanamo, and walk for peace with 300 international activists in Palestine and Israel. She also walked 500 miles to protest war from Chicago to the Republican National Convention in Minneapolis in 2008 with Voices for Creative Nonviolence. Mary Dean is based in Chicago, Illinois, U.S.

Pat Elder
Pat Elder is the author of Military Recruiting in the United States, and the Director of the National Coalition to Protect Student Privacy, an organization that works to counter the alarming militarization of America’s high schools. Elder was a co-founder of the DC Antiwar Network and a long-time member of the Steering Committee of the National Network Opposing the Militarization of Youth. His articles have appeared in Truth Out, Common Dreams, Alternet, L.A. Progressive, Sojourner’s Magazine, and U.S. Catholic Magazine. Elder’s work has also been covered by NPR, USA Today, The Washington Post, Aljazeera, Russia Today, and Education Week. Elder has crafted bills and helped to pass legislation in Maryland and New Hampshire to curtail recruiter access to student data. He has been instrumental in helping to convince more than a thousand schools to take steps to protect student data from recruiters. Elder helped to organize a successful series of demonstrations to shut down the Army Experience Center, a first-person shooter video arcade in a Philadelphia suburb. Pat Elder worked to pressure the UN’s Committee on the Rights of the Child to call on the Obama Administration to adhere to the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the Involvement of Children in Armed Conflict regarding military recruiting practices in the schools. Elder hold a Master’s in Government from the University of Maryland and Maryland high school teacher certification. He lives with his wife, Nell on the St. Mary’s River in St. Mary’s City, Maryland.

Bob Fantina
fantinaRobert Fantina is the WBW country coordinator in Canada. He moved from the United States to Canada in 2005, seeking a more peaceful environment, where the will of the people could be relied upon to direct government actions.  He is a journalist, writing extensively about issues related to war and peace, and is the author of several books, including Empire, Racism and Genocide: A History of U.S. Foreign Policy. When residing in the U.S., he was actively opposed to the invasion and occupation of Iraq, and worked for reasonable gun control.

Amy C. Finnegan
Amy Finnegan is Assistant Professor and Chair of Justice and Peace Studies at the University of St. Thomas and Co-Director of SocMed, a social justice organization seeking to expand the conversation on and engagement with the social determinants of health through education and movement building. She is a sociologist, educator, and activist who is particularly keen on building spaces and opportunities for constructive dialogue across divergent perspectives. She studies social movements and social change, peace and conflict dynamics, and global health with many years of experience in northern Uganda.

Dick Foley

Dick Foley is a Vietnam vet and VA volunteer. He frequently speaks to students about what recruiters leave out.

Tim “Brother Timothy” Frantzich
Brother Timothy Frantzich has been writing songs and singing for more than three decades. He is primarily interest in harmony. Brother Timothy released his first solo CD “Our Lost and Wild Daughter” in 2012 and promptly took a right turn and began teach grade school. He taught for four years at City of Lakes Waldorf School and is now back to being a full time musician. Timothy believes many more of us can sing than do sing, and he believes that groups of people singing together not only reminds us of Heaven, but can create Heaven.

Tony Jenkins
Tony Jenkins, PhD, is Education Coordinator for World Beyond War. He has 15+ years of experience directing and designing peacebuilding and international educational programs and projects and leadership in the international development of peace studies and peace education. Since 2001 he has served as the Managing Director of the International Institute on Peace Education (IIPE) and since 2007 as the Coordinator of the Global Campaign for Peace Education (GCPE). Professionally, he has been: Director, Peace Education Initiative at The University of Toledo (2014-16); Vice President for Academic Affairs, National Peace Academy (2009-2014); and Co-Director, Peace Education Center, Teachers College Columbia University (2001-2010). In 2014-15, Tony served as a member of UNESCO’s Experts Advisory Group on Global Citizenship Education.

Larry Johnson
Larry Johnson has worked with young people as a storyteller/educator/activist, since the 60s.  He is currently a main organizer for the MAP Peace Essay contest, as well as for WORLD STORYTELLING DAY, with its inherent theme of “If I can hear your story, it’s harder for me to hate you”.  He is a past President of Veterans for Peace Chapter 27 in Minnesota, and is still national chair for the OGP (Old Gardening Party), to keep the world safe for children, gardening, and storytelling.  His recent book, SIXTY-ONE, grew from taking the JFK 50 Mile Hike in 1961, and then a 61st birthday 61 Mile Hike calling for less war, therefore fewer veterans, and an end to veteran care arguments, especially for mental health and exposure to chemical toxins.

Kathy Kelly
During each of 20  trips to Afghanistan, Kathy Kelly, as an  invited guest of the Afghan Peace Volunteers, has lived alongside ordinary Afghan people in a working class neighborhood in Kabul.  She and her companions in Voices for Creative Nonviolence believe that “where you stand determines what you see.” In June, 2016, Kathy participated in a delegation that visited five cities in Russia, aiming to learn about Russian opinions regarding NATO exercises taking place along their border. Kelly has  joined with activists in various regions of the U.S. to  protest drone warfare by holding demonstrations outside of U.S. military  bases in Nevada, California, Michigan, Wisconsin and Whiteman Air  Force base in Missouri.  In 2015, for carrying a loaf of bread and a letter across the line at Whiteman AFB she served three months in prison. From 1996 – 2003, Voices activists formed 70 delegations that openly defied economic sanctions by bringing medicines to children and families in Iraq. Kelly traveled to Iraq 27 times, during that period. She and her companions lived in Baghdad throughout  the 2003 “Shock and Awe” bombing. They have also lived alongside people during warfare in Gaza, Lebanon, Bosnia and Nicaragua. She was sentenced to one year in federal prison for planting corn on  nuclear missile silo sites (1988-89) at Whiteman Air Force Base and spent three months in prison, in 2004, for crossing the line at Fort Benning’s military training school. As  a war tax refuser, she has refused payment of all forms of federal income tax since 1980.

Bob Koehler
Robert C. Koehler is a nationally syndicated columnist and self-proclaimed peace journalist. He describes his work as “prayers disguised as op-eds.” He has been a Chicago-based reporter, editor and columnist for over 30 years. His work has appeared in dozens of newspapers, large and small, including the Chicago Tribune, San Francisco Chronicle, Miami Herald, Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Houston Chronicle, and Toronto Star; and he is a featured writer on such sites as Huffington Post and Common Dreams. He has received numerous awards for his writing. His recent book, Courage Grows Strong at the Wound, is a collection of essays on grief, single-parenting, and the internal and external quest for peace. Koehler has taught writing and journalism at both the high school and college levels and is a passionate believer that everyone has a powerful writing voice that deserves to be heard. He has been called many things; his favorite: “blatantly relevant.”

Sam Koplinka-Loehr
Sam lives in Philadelphia and is a white, 25-year old, genderqueer activist and organizer (who uses they/them pronouns). They grew up in the peace movement and they have a decade of community organizing experience for economic, racial, and environmental justice. They are actively involved with campaigns against police violence as well as mass incarceration. Their work focuses on building a stronger connection between the older generation of the peace movement and current movements for racial justice. Towards that goal, they helped spearhead a national effort for people to refuse paying taxes to the federal government — as the majority of tax dollars go to the military and militarization of communities around the globe  — and redirect that money to Black, Brown, and Indigenous organizers who are working for liberation.

Nekima Levy-Pounds
Nekima Levy-Pounds is a renowned civil rights attorney, ordained Reverend, former law professor, freedom fighter, legal scholar, blogger, and national expert on issues at the intersections of race, public policy, economic justice, public education, juvenile justice, and the criminal justice system. She is the author of several articles and essays focused on racial justice, poverty, incarceration, and the War on Drugs. Her work has been featured in The Associated Press, The Crisis Magazine, Huffington Post, and the Star Tribune, to name a few. She has appeared on national news outlets such as CNN, PBS, Al Jazeera America, News One, Democracy Now, and HuffPost Live.

Dave Logsdon

Dave Logsdon is the President of Chapter 27 of Veterans for Peace, in the Greater Minneapolis, St. Paul area.

 

 

Michael Lynn
Michael Lynn is a veteran activist in Chicago. He spearheaded two coalition efforts to pass Chicago City Council resolutions. The first campaign was a 2005 effort on a resolution placing the City of Chicago on record urging the immediate withdrawal of all U.S. troops from Iraq. The second effort was a 2007 resolution that would have placed the city on record as opposing any American military action against Iran. That action was the project of a citywide coalition he helped found, The No War On Iran Coalition. He was also instrumental in organizing opposition to the 2012 NATO meetings held in Chicago, co-authoring an editorial for the Chicago Tribune. He currently sits on the board of Peace Action, the nation’s largest peace and justice organization and is a member of the Chicago chapter of World Beyond War.

Ben Manski
Ben Manski is an American sociologist, lawyer, and democracy advocate. He is the founder of the Liberty Tree Foundation for the Democratic Revolution, and co-founder of Move to Amend, Wisconsin Wave, the 180/Movement for Democracy and Education, and United for Peace and Justice. In 2011, he served as chair of the first biennial Democracy Convention.

George Martin
George Paz Martin’s life-long community activism began in the civil rights movement at 14 and at 16 he was ten feet from Dr. King during his “I Have A Dream” speech. While a student at Marquette U., he was drafted for Vietnam, refused to go and became the youngest of the original Milwaukee Black Panthers. Working in the ‘War on Poverty’ at 21, he negotiated Wisconsin’s First Affirmative Action Program in the construction industry for a Black and Brown Coalition. At 25, he helped develop one of the first U.S. Health Department HMO models and helped establish HMOs in communities of color nationally. During his lifetime, he has served more than 100 grassroots organizations as staff, board member or consultant. Martin has been a consultant to the U.S. Departments of Labor and Health and the National Institute of Health. Currently and for the last 27 years, George has served Milwaukee’s homeless especially homeless veterans. For 8 years, George Paz Martin served as a National Co-Chair of United for Peace & Justice, the U.S.’s largest Iraq War Coalition after a fact finding mission to Baghdad just after “Shock & Awe.” Martin has traveled internationally dozens of times working for peace in Africa, the Middle East, Europe, South America and Asia. He has spoken truth to power against war on television on every U.S. network, CNN, C-Span, Democracy Now, BBC, Al Jazeera and television in more than 150 countries. Currently, George serves on the Board of the Liberty Tree Foundation and has been a delegate to the World Peace Council, World Social Forum and an NGO delegate to the United Nations in disarmament and climate. George Paz  Martin, a former Fellow of the Marquette U. Center for Peacemaking, has been honored with the National Peace & Justice Studies Association’s Social Courage Award, the WI Network for Peace & Justice and the Foundation for a United Front’s Lifetime Activism Awards. The tribe of his slave roots in Ghana honors him as a chief for his international work for peace and justice with the name “Nii Adjetey.”

Steve McKeown
Radio Operator with the 4th Infantry Division in Vietnam.  Founding member of the Mpls St Paul Veterans For Peace chapter shown here painting the chapter’s soon to be mobile Peace Center.  Over the years Steve has worked with the Nuclear Freeze and the Resistance to Honeywell Weapons Production. He has been active for many years organizing against U.S. intervention in Central America, especially in regard to the School of the Americas. He has organized to stop JROTC and the militarization of society in general; most recently with promoting the Kellogg-Briand Pact which outlaws war, and spreading the message of the ringing of bells on Armistice Day instead of the 21-gun volley. Currently he is working with the local End War Committee for the nuclear weapons ban. Steve has been the assignment coordinator for his VFP chapter’s newsletter for 25 yrs. He is married with 2 children, one grandchild, a graduate of the U of MN , and continues to speak at many forums, including schools and churches re issues of war and peace.

Jamani Montague
Jamani Montague is a scholar-activist from Newark, NJ. She is currently a senior at Emory University in Atlanta, studying International Studies and Environmental Science. Jamani serves as Human Rights Advocacy Coordinator for RootsAction.org, where she works closely with prisoners, the media, and legal activists to bring civil and environmental justice to those behind bars. She has organized numerous petitions, local demonstrations and political education workshops to raise awareness about state-sanctioned violence, environmental equity and ecological restoration in vulnerable and marginalized communities. In 2017, Jamani was selected as a national Udall Scholar for herenvironmental leadership, research and advocacy. She plans to pursue a Ph.D. in Environmental Studies in the near future.

Jack Nelson-Pallmeyer
Jack Nelson-Pallmeyer is Associate Professor of Justice and Peace Studies at the University of St. Thomas in Minnesota.  Jack is a graduate of St. Olaf College where he majored in Political Science. He did his theological training at Union Theological Seminary in New York City where he received a Master of Divinity degree.  Jack is an activist academic whose life and work are focused on addressing the political, economic, faith, and foreign policy dimensions of hunger and poverty.  Jack is the author of thirteen books, some of which have been used by progressive social change movements in this country and throughout the world.  Hunger for Justice:  The Politics of Food and Faith examined the many ways U.S. foreign policies shored up governments whose economic practices and priorities were responsible for extensive hunger and poverty.  War against the Poor, School of Assassins, and his novel Harvest of Cain drew on his extensive experience in Central America.  Each reveal and condemn U.S. support for dictators and death squads and the U.S. war against liberation theology.  In Saving Christianity from Empire, Is Religion Killing Us, and Jesus against Christianity, Jack addresses many issues related to religion and violence, the nonviolent practices of Jesus, and many problems associated with U.S. militarism.  His most recent book, Authentic Hope:  It’s the End of the World as We Know It but Soft Landings Are Possible is available from Orbis Books. Present priority concerns include: how and why the United States became a permanent warfare state with few seeming to care; alternatives to violence; climate change and ecological challenges; inequality; and pathways to meaningful social change.

Pepperwolf
Retired educator and librarian. Co-organizer of AlliantACTION. Editor of paper handout of weekly CircleVision for the weekly vigil. Nonviolence trainer (in MN) for SOAWatch vigils. Former board member and former director and current member of WAMM (Women Against Military Madness).

Coleen Rowley
Coleen Rowley is a retired FBI Agent and former Minneapolis Division Legal Counsel who testified in 2002 as a whistleblower about some of the FBI’s pre 9-11 failures to the Joint Intelligence Committee Inquiry; the Senate Judiciary Committee; and to investigators of the Department of Justice Inspector General. In 2002, TIME Magazine selected two corporate fraud whistleblowers and Rowley as their “Persons of the Year.”

Monique Salhab
Monique Salhab is an Iraq War Veteran, who currently presides on the National Board of Directors of Veterans For Peace and is also the board of directors’ Secretary. She is a social activist working in Albuquerque on specific issues of immigration and Muslim Ban 3.0. Ms. Salhab also speaks to middle school, high school student and the local immigrant population regarding the Truth in Recruiting and its consequences. Ms. Salhab identifies as a queer veteran woman of colour. These labels are not important to her because she wishes them to be, but because of how society forces her to exist within its marginalised structure.

Maya Schenwar
Maya Schenwar is the author of Locked Down, Locked Out: Why Prison Doesn’t Work and How We Can Do Better, and is Editor-in-Chief of Truthout. She has written about the prison-industrial complex for Truthout, The New York Times, The Guardian, The Nation, Salon, Ms. Magazine, and others. She is the recipient of a Society of Professional Journalists Sigma Chi Award, an Independent Publisher Book Award, the Women’s Prison Association’s Sarah Powell Huntington Leadership Award, and a Lannan Residency Fellowship. Maya served for four years as chair of the Media Consortium’s board. She organizes with the Chicago-based prison abolitionist group Love & Protect and the Chicago Community Bond Fund. Previous to her work at Truthout, Maya was Contributing Editor at Punk Planet magazine and served as media coordinator for Voices for Creative Nonviolence.

Scott Shapiro
Scott Shapiro is the Charles F. Southmayd Professor of Law, Professor of Philosophy at Yale Law School and the Visiting Quain Professor of Jurisprudence at University College, London. He joined the Yale Law faculty in July 2008 as a professor of law and philosophy. He previously taught law and philosophy at the University of Michigan. His areas of interest include jurisprudence, international law, constitutional law and theory, criminal law, philosophy of action, and the theory of authority. Scott is the author of Legality (2011) and editor (with Jules Coleman) of The Oxford Handbook of Jurisprudence and Philosophy of Law (2002). He is also the Director of Yale’s Center for Law and Philosophy, co-editor of Legal Theory and the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (section on Legal Philosophy). Scott earned B.A. and Ph.D. degrees in philosophy from Columbia University and a J.D. from Yale Law School, where he was senior editor of The Yale Law Journal.  He and Oona Hathaway have just published “The Internationalists: How a Radical Plan to Outlaw War Remade the World,” a history of international law as it has evolved from the 17th century through the present.

Kent Shifferd
Kent Shifferd is a member of World Beyond War’s Coordinating Committee and an author of A Global Security System: An Alternative to War. He holds a Ph.D. in history from Northern Illinois University and taught for thirty years at Northland College where he directed the Peace Studies program. He has held visiting appointments at Ripon College, the University of Wisconsin, and United Theological Seminary. He was one of the founders of the Wisconsin Institute for Peace and Conflict Studies, a twenty-one campus consortium, and served several terms as its Executive Director. He was part of the team of scholars who created the award-winning Annenberg-CPB, distance learning course, Dilemmas Of War And Peace, broadcast on Wisconsin Public Radio. Kent Shifferd lives with his wife, Dr. Patricia Shifferd, and their Sheltie, “Sweetheart,” on Middle Twin Lake in northern Wisconsin. He likes old airplanes, bluegill fishing, and traveling in Europe. He is currently working on a new book on the unprecedented global crisis of hypercivilization and the ways humananity and the planet might yet survive it.

David Smith
Rev. David Smith, Catholic Priest and retired professor of theology, was founding director of the Justice and Peace Studies program at the University of St. Thomas. In that position, he has traveled extensively through Europe, the Middle East, South Asia, Africa, and Latin America to study poverty, justice, and peace, with special attention to liberation theologies and active nonviolence for social change. He first visited Israel in 1968 when he was a graduate student in Rome, and studied in Jerusalem at the Ecole Biblique for two years in the mid 1970s. He visited again in 1990, at the height of the first intifada, with a group of peace studies academics. He was a member of a Michigan Peace Team of third-party nonviolent peacemakers in Gaza in the summer of 2005 and in the West Bank for three months in the fall of 2007. He is co-author of the book Understanding World Religions: A Road Map for Justice and Peace (2nd ed.: Rowman and Littlefield, 2014) which studies the ways various world religions interact to support or interfere with justice and peace, with Israel-Palestine as a case study. Currently, he is promoting boycott, divestment, and sanctions to pressure Israel to deal fairly with Palestinians, and is a board member of the Iraqi American Reconciliation Project. Photo credit: Colleen Casey Simonson, U. of St. Thomas.

Norman Solomon
Norman Solomon is a longtime activist and author whose books include “War Made Easy: How Presidents and Pundits Keep Spinning Us to Death” and “Made Love, Got War: Close Encounters with America’s Warfare State.” He’s the executive director of the Institute for Public Accuracy and co-founder/coordinator of RootsAction.org, an online group that now has upwards of 1.5 million active members; RootsAction is dedicated to galvanizing people who are committed to economic fairness, equal rights, civil liberties, environmental protection — and defunding endless wars. Norman was a Bernie Sanders delegate to the 2016 Democratic National Convention and the coordinator of the Bernie Delegates Network.

David Swanson
davidDavid Swanson is an author, activist, journalist, and radio host. He is director of WorldBeyondWar.org and campaign coordinator for RootsAction.org. Swanson’s books include War Is A Lie and When the World Outlawed War. He blogs at DavidSwanson.org and WarIsACrime.org. He hosts Talk Nation Radio. He is a 2015, 2016, 2017 Nobel Peace Prize Nominee. Find him on Facebook and Twitter and contact him at david at davidswanson dot org.

 

Ellen Thomas
Ellen Thomas is a member of the Coordinating Committee of World Beyond War and a  co-chair of the Disarm/End Wars Committee of Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom U.S. section.  She lives in the mountains of North Carolina. Thomas spent 25 years in Washington, D.C., 18 of them maintaining a day-and-night vigil for global nuclear disarmament in front of the White House.  With her husband, vigil founder William Thomas, she co-founded the Peace House, ten blocks from the vigil, which she managed from 2002 until his death in 2009. Thomas travels quite a bit to promote a bill in the U.S. Congress that has been introduced every session since 1994 after a successful voter initiative that Thomas and other vigilers brought in Washington, D.C.  See http://prop1.org for a history of the “Nuclear Weapons Abolition and Economic and Energy Conversion Act.” See also the text and write a letter to your Congressperson asking for co-sponsorship. Thomas has been collecting information about nuclear issues, and since December 1998 posting what she has learned on Yahoo at NucNews. She is a videographer with an amazing library of events since the mid-1980s, and most recently has been moderating the Facebook pages NucNews and Eye On Congress among others.

Bonnie Urfer
Bonnie Urfer attended Milwaukee public schools during the “duck & cover” days, when the possibility of nuclear war never left her mind. Her heart led her to the path of peace and justice work. For 28 years until retirement, and now as a volunteer, she has worked for Nukewatch. During those years she has become educated about the nuclear industry as few others have. She organized, marched, crossed lines, wrote, spent 6 1/2 years in jails and prisons, tracked H-bomb trucks and trains, created the maps in Nuclear Heartland, painted banners, and participated in all sorts of mischief at military bases, nuclear missile silos, and war machine sites. Now she lives in community outside of Luck, Wisconsin, with her favorite organization only 200 steps away.

Ann Wright
Ann Wright served 29 years in the U.S. Army/Army Reserves and retired as a Colonel.  She also was a U.S. diplomat for 16 years and served in U.S. Embassies in Nicaragua, Grenada, Somalia, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Sierra Leone, Micronesia, Afghanistan and Mongolia.  She resigned in March 2003 in opposition to the U.S. war on Iraq. She has challenged U.S. policies of regime change, 800 U.S. military bases around the world, assassin drones, and has traveled in solidarity with those who work for peace to Gaza, the West Bank, Yemen, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iran, North Korea, South Korea, Okinawa, Japan, Russia, China and most countries in Europe.

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