Session Type(s): Panel
Starts: Thursday, Aug. 10 1:00 PM
Ends: Thursday, Aug. 10 2:15 PM
Room: Hanover A-B
With the radical right controlling the White House and Congress, the courts must be the first line of defense against Trump’s agenda—and a centerpiece of the resistance. From direct challenges to policies like the Muslim ban to protecting the rights of workers, women, people of color, persons with disabilities, LGBT communities and more, the future of the federal judiciary is essential. Trump already nominated one Supreme Court justice and could fill over 100 vacancies on the lower courts. Join us to discuss the courts’ role in checking Trump’s abuses of power, why the resistance must include action on judicial nominations and lessons learned from recent fights on how to act and strategies that make a difference online and on the ground.
Nan Aron is the president and founder of Alliance for Justice, a national association of over 100 public interest and civil rights organizations. A leading voice in public interest law for over 30 years, Nan founded AFJ in 1979 and guides the organization in its mission to ensure that all Americans have the right and opportunity to secure justice in the courts and to have their voices heard when government makes decisions that affect their lives. Nan has taught at Georgetown and George Washington University law schools and serves on the Dean’s Advisory Council at American University’s Washington College of Law. She received her B.A. from Oberlin College and her J.D. from Case Western Reserve University School of Law.
Sean Carlson is a Senior Vice President at Revolution Messaging. As an expert in strategic communications and online organizing, Sean works at the intersection of digital media, culture, and organizing with clients such as the Alliance For Justice, The Clooney Foundation for Justice, the Independent Drivers Guild, and UltraViolet.
Sean has helped launch a nationwide campaign to close youth prisons, was the cochair of communications for the United for Marriage coalition during the landmark marriage equality cases in 2013, and has served as a teaching and training fellow at the New Organizing Institute.
Sean was formerly a professional Trombonist, studying at Duquesne and Carnegie Mellon Universities, and is proud to have multiple degrees in Bass Trombone performance that he’s totally using (sorry Mom!). He lives in Hyattsville, MD with his husband Jamie McGonnigal and their dog Eli.
Anisha Singh is the Campaign Manager for Legal Progress at the Center for American Progress where she shapes the conversation around the nation’s judicial process by managing unprecedented grassroots organization efforts across the country to educate Americans on the need to fill judicial vacancies. She previously managed the policy division of United Sikhs where she focused on international civil rights advocacy, with an emphasis on post-9/11 discrimination concerns. Singh carries more than nine years of experience in social justice work, and a strong grassroots-organizing background. She received her B.A. in political science and communication studies from Florida State University and her J.D. from the University of Virginia School of Law. She was named one of Forbes magazine’s “30 under 30“in 2016.
Keith Thirion is an experienced campaigner, advocate, and organizer. As the Director of Outreach at Alliance for Justice, he directs organizational strategies and leads coalitions in campaigns to increase visibility of the courts and judicial nominations, focusing on the importance of the courts in protecting civil rights and constitutional protections. He previously served as Director of Advocacy & Programs and then Acting Director of Equality Maryland, where he played a lead role in passing the state transgender anti-discrimination law and directed the campaign to deny opponents signatures for a repeal referendum. He also directed EQMD’s public education and advocacy programs. He also worked for the Chesapeake Climate Action Network directing Virginia field campaigns to advance clean energy policies and counter the power of the commonwealth’s biggest polluters. Keith began organizing on multiple ballot initiative campaigns, including Proposition 8 in Los Angeles, and as an Organizing Fellow with the National LGBTQ Task Force.