Lobbying for Science and Reason on Capitol Hill
Toni Van Pelt is the director of the Center for Inquiry's Office of Public Policy in Washington, D.C. She will talk about her work as a lobbyist, promoting and advancing science and secularism. She asks Congressional Members to base law and policy on empirical evidence where possible, and the scientific method as opposed to faith. She also champions separation of church and state and social justice issues including women's equality and lesbian and gay rights. She interacts closely with her colleagues assigned to the United Nations on international issues of concern, including The Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women.
Prior to her reassignment to Washington, Toni was the first executive director for the Center for Inquiry-Florida, where she fostered new CFI Communities and campus groups. In her prior role as the president of Florida National Organization for Women, she lobbied the Federal and Florida Legislature, helping to write and establish new law in the state. She is a veteran of Congressional and state political campaigns working for candidates as well as on issues. She has appeared on television and has been interviewed by national and international media.