Philadelphia Regional Conference

Saturday, October 5th - Hosted by Penn for Liberty

Join Students For Liberty at the University of Pennsylvania on Saturday, October 5th for the 2013 Students For Liberty Philadelphia Regional Conference. We’re excited to return to the University of Pennsylvania this year, site of the first Philadelphia Regional Conference. Since that time the pro-liberty presence in the Philadelphia area has grown exponentially. Students will gather from all over the Northeast for this incredible event.

By attending the conference, you will hear from top speakers in the libertarian movement, network with other pro-liberty students, discover countless opportunities for jobs, internships, conferences and seminars, and have a lot of fun with other students. This day-long event will feature tremendous speakers, panels, and breakout sessions on the ideas behind a free society and the actions necessary to implement them. In addition, three free meals and drinks at our evening social are included with your FREE registration. Don’t miss out on your chance to be a part of the student movement for liberty! Register at the bottom of this page!


Keynote Speaker – Clark Neily

Clark Neily joined the Institute for Justice as a senior attorney in 2000.  He litigates economic liberty, property rights, school choice, First Amendment, and other constitutional cases in both federal and state courts. He served as counsel in a successful challenge to Nevada’s monopolistic limousine licensing practices, which effectively prevented small-business-persons from operating their own limousine services in the Las Vegas area.  He was the lead attorney in the Institute’s successful defense of the Mackinac Center for Public Policy against a lawsuit by the Michigan Education Association challenging the Centers right to quote the MEAs president in fundraising literature, and he led IJs opposition to a nationwide effort to cartelize the interior design industry through anti-competitive occupational licensing requirements. Clark is also a member of the Institutes school choice team. Besides representing parents and children in defense of Floridas Opportunity Scholarship Program and school choice programs in Arizona, Maine, Milwaukee, and elsewhere, he has participated in many debates in support of school choice. Clark helped create the Institute’s Center for Judicial Engagement, which was designed to challenge the unconstitutional expansion of government by articulating a principled vision of judicial review, educating the public about the importance of a properly engaged judiciary, and advocating the Constitution as a charter of liberty and a bulwark against the illegitimate assumption of government power.


Keynote Speaker – Bob Bowdon

Bob Bowdon is Executive Director of ChoiceMedia.TV, an education reform news service. He was the Director of The Cartel, an award-winning documentary film about corruption in American public education. The film won twelve film festival awards and national distribution from Warner Brothers. His long career in broadcast journalism included six years as an anchor/reporter with Bloomberg Television. He’s appeared regularly in satirical news videos for The Onion News Network as the on-location reporter “Brian Scott,” on the IFC cable channel. He holds a B.S. in mechanical engineering from Purdue University and an M.S. in industrial engineering from Stanford University.


Derrell Bradford

Derrell Bradford is the Executive Director of Better Education for Kids’ 501c4 efforts. Before joining B4K, he served as the Executive Director and Director of Communications for Excellent Education for Everyone (E3), New Jersey’s largest school choice advocacy group. He also led and co-led the research and legal efforts, respectively, for the organization. Derrell served on Governor Chris Christie’s Educator Effectiveness Task Force, which gave recommendations on designing a new, statewide evaluation system for teachers and leaders, and is a member of the State Department of Education’s Charter School Advisory Board.  Derrell appears frequently in print, radio, and on television to discuss and debate a wide range of education reform issues. He is also a Trustee for We Can Do Better NJ.


Ben Berger

Institute for Humane Studies Speaker Series

Ben Berger received his A.B. from Princeton University and his M.A. and Ph.D. from Harvard University, where he worked with Harvey Mansfield, Michael Sandel, and Peter Berkowitz. He is now associate professor of political science at Swarthmore College, where he serves as co-faculty director of the Center for Innovation and Leadership.  Berger specializes in modern political theory, with particular emphases on civil society and the works of Alexis de Tocqueville and Hannah Arendt.  His book, Attention Deficit Democracy: the paradox of civic engagement—published by Princeton University Press—won the NASSP (North American Society for Social Philosophy) Book Award for the best social philosophy book published in 2011.  It was also named one of the Top 10 Nonfiction Books of 2011 by Zocalo Public Square, a California think tank.  Berger has written for a variety of political science journals as well as for The National Review.  He is a frequent guest on the nationally syndicated NPR program “Radio Times.”  Current research interests include the role of moral engagement and disengagement in civil society—a subject that straddles the boundaries of political theory and cognitive neuroscience— and the affinities between Alexis de Tocqueville and Friedrich Hayek.  He has been teaching at IHS seminars since 2007.


Professor Daniel Lin

Institute for Humane Studies Speaker Series

Daniel Lin is a Professorial Lecturer in the Department of Economics at American University.  He teaches courses in microeconomics, macroeconomics, environmental economics, and political economy.  His research interests include the industrial organization of entertainment industries and the antitrust implications of various theories of competition. Dan has a Ph.D. in Economics from George Mason University and a B.A. in Economics from the University of California, Los Angeles.



Samantha Harris

Samantha K. Harris, a Philadelphia native, graduated from the University of Pennsylvania Law School and from Princeton University, where she earned an A.B. magna cum laude in politics. As an undergraduate, Samantha completed a senior thesis that analyzed the constitutional implications of former Mayor Rudolph Giuliani’s quality-of-life initiative in New York City. During law school, she served on the editorial board of the Journal of Constitutional Law. Before joining FIRE, Samantha clerked for the late Honorable Jay C. Waldman of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, and most recently was an associate at the law firm of Pepper Hamilton in Philadelphia.


William Thomas

William R Thomas has a Master’s Degree in Economics from the University of Michigan, where he taught the economic history of the United States and China. He has been a lecturer at Gadjah Mada University in Indonesia and conducted research under the auspices of the People’s University of China. He is a graduate of Oberlin College, where he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. Thomas is the editor of The Literary Art of Ayn Rand (2005), author of Radical for Capitalism, and is the co-author of the survey The Logical Structure of Objectivism. He has published essays on topics in politics, ethics, and epistemology. He has spoken internationally on the theory of individual rights and Ayn Rand’s philosophy of Objectivism. Will was a contributing editor for The New Individualist and has written many articles for the magazine


Tim Datig

Tim Datig is currently a speaker with the organization Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP). His 28-year career in law enforcement began in October 1968 with The New York City Police Department. Upon graduating the Police Academy he was assigned to the Midtown South Precinct in Manhattan. Midtown South included Times Square, the Garment District, part of the theater district, the fur district and part of the flower district. Tim spent 15 years working the streets of Manhattan in various patrol and plain-clothes assignment. In 1985 Tim resumed his police carrier in Vermont. His first job was in the Town of Weathersfield where he was the only officer covering thirty-five square miles backed up by the Vermont State Police. In 1987 Tim was appointed Chief of the Bristol Police Department where he spent two years modernizing the department. In 1989 Tim was appointed Chief of the Saint Albans Police Department. During his tenure in St. Albans Tim attended the 175th session of the FBI National Academy. He also spent three week in Russia on a cultural law enforcement exchange program with Project Harmony. Tim retired from police work in 1996. Throughout his law enforcement career Tim participated in many of the programs aimed at the war on drugs. In NYC it was a “buy and Bust” program. In Vermont it was  “Marijuana eradication” programs, finding marijuana planted in between stalks of corn so they would be hidden from air surveillance. The end result is nothing has changed except the programs and creativity of the drug dealers.


TK Coleman

T.K. Coleman has been in the corporate training world, co-founded an online business, worked on movie scripts, acted, and runs a life-coaching service and several websites, Facebook pages, and a podcast series on putting ideas into practice. He’s studied philosophy formally and informally and been in and out of academia. He won’t let any new person he meets go without first learning something from them. He credits his network of interesting people and voracious reading, more than his formal education, with the knowledge he’s gained.


Sloane Frost

Sloane Frost graduated from Cornell University in 2008 with a degree in Policy Analysis & Management and concentration in Health Policy. While studying the economics and history of health policy in this country, Sloane became interested in the principles of liberty and individual responsibility that seem to be missing from modern policy initiatives.  After serving with City Year, an AmeriCorps program, Sloane saw first hand the negative consequences of an intrusive government public education system.  She returned to academia to earn a Masters in Public Policy and certificate in Health Administration and Policy at the University of Chicago in June 2011. Various experiences in the university setting quickly taught Sloane that her fellow students are also deprived of many freedoms on campus, and she became dedicated to the student fight for liberty.  In 2007, Sloane co-founded Students For Liberty and now serves as the Chairwoman of the SFL Board of Directors. Sloane is currently a research analyst with Mathematica Policy Research in Princeton, NJ.


James Padilioni Jr.

James is a Ph.D student in early American studies at the College of William and Mary focusing on slave culture and resistance and the musicology and political economy of jazz.  Previously he was the founder and president of West Chester University Students for Liberty, where he also closely worked with WCU Students for Sensible Drug Policy and the Campus Freedom Network with the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education. James is passionate in his belief that liberty is necessary for human flourishing, which he views as the only thing that ultimately matters.



Check back soon as we announce more speakers!


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