When it comes to elections and electoral reform, FairVote speakers are a cut above the rest. Their breadth of experience generates powerful and unique discussions on what it means to participate in a representative democracy in the 21st Century. This diverse list of speakers includes noted authors, former politicians, musicians, academics, voting rights experts and many others. As frequent media contributors, they have been guests on major networks and published commentary in most major newspapers in the United States. Addressing a wide array of audiences - from state legislators to high school students - FairVote speakers bring a new approach to talking about election reform.
Partial List of Speakers
Executive director Rob Richie has been an electoral reform leader for two decades. As an elections expert, Richie is an author of Every Vote Equal and has appeared on CNN, Fox, MSNBC, NPR, NBC and C-SPAN. Richie can speak on a wide range of topics relating to domestic and international elections and reform.
Board chair Krist Novoselic is the author of Of Grunge and Government and an electoral reform activist in his home state of Washington. Novoselic rose to fame in the 90s as the bassist for Nirvana. He is particularly interested in bottom-up citizen reforms, such as ranked choice voting and fair representation voting systems. Novoselic has discussed electoral reform with young people and elected officials across the country.
Board member Hendrik Hertzberg is a senior essayist at The New Yorker who frequently appears on national news and talk programs. Before joining the New Yorker, Hertzberg was the chief White House speechwriter in the final year of Jimmy Carter’s administration. He has served on FairVote’s Board since 1995 and frequently writes about FairVote reform ideas. His particular "obsession right now" is the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact, which recently passed in his home state of New York.
Board member William Redpath is a former chair of the Libertarian Party and is a two-time candidate for statewide office in Virginia. He has served on the FairVote Board since 1995.
Board member Cynthia Terrell has served as a staffer and Board member for FairVote for twenty years and has run congressional and ballot measure campaigns. Terrell is the project chair of FairVote's Representation 2020 program, which advances women's representation.
Staff attorney Drew Spencer has worked at FairVote since 2012. His work centers on racial minority vote dilution, the Voting Rights Act, and ranked choice voting.
Other Board members, staff and allies also could be appropriate depending on the venue and topic for your event.
Topics FairVote speakers can address
- The gerrymandering crisis and the value of proportional representation
- The Electoral College and the National Popular Vote plan reform proposal
- Third parties in the United States and proposed changes to electoral rules
- Making our democracy relevant for young people in 21st century America
- Voting rights, voter turnout and the case for a constitutional right to vote
- Reform is possible: Two decades of making a difference and winning change
- Beyond partisan bickering: envisioning a more effective democracy
- Representation of women, racial minorities and ideological diversity
- How to build a democracy movement in your community
FairVote does certain speaking engagements without a fee, but typically receives an honorarium and coverage for travel expenses.
How to Invite a Speaker
Please send an email to us at info[at]fairvote.org with answers to these questions. You can call us at (301) 270-4616 to check in on the status of your query.
1) Preferred speakers in order of preference
2) Date(s) for event and venue
3) Projected audience and event goal
4) Preferred topic(s)
5) Honorarium range and travel reimbursement
6) Materials needed
7) Contact information