"The forces that threaten free speech and viewpoint diversity at Princeton and universities nationwide pose a grave threat to our country and Western civilization."
Author and journalist since 1971, with interruptions for law school & traveling fellowship. Coauthored 3 critically acclaimed books. Co-filed occasional Supreme Court amicus briefs. Taught media law at Stanford spring quarters 2011 & 2012. Three years as a lawyer with Wilmer, Cutler & Pickering. Harvard JD 1977. Princeton AB 1970.
Former legislative counsel to Senator J. William Fulbright, President and CEO of the American Bankers Association, and partner in the law firm of Covington & Burling. He currently serves on several boards and is a founder and Chairman Emeritus of the Alumni Free Speech Alliance, the national association of alumni free speech groups.
Stanford Law School '73.
"Civil discourse has significantly eroded at Princeton... a critical underpinning for learning."
Todd is a graduate of the “First” Class of 1973 (Coeducation!), and majored in Russian History. He spent the next 45 years in TECH, centered in Silicon Valley. He traversed initially from Main Frame computers (IBM), through to the Internet. He worked in EXEC positions at First Data, NeXT Computers (Steve Jobs), and Netscape (Jim Clark and Marc Andreesen). Todd has supported numerous charitable causes including The Carter Foundation, and several education and environmental organizations. He has four great children.
"In the last decade, I have watched with alarm the growing culture of censorship and declining support for free speech and viewpoint diversity in K - 12 schools and on America’s college campuses. My children’s recent college experiences have heightened my awareness of the impact of intimidation and self-censorship, both in the classroom and out.”
Leslie was a journalist and editor at Forbes Magazine for over a decade. She has served as trustee and vice-chair of a K - 12 private school, and on boards and management positions at a number of education and cultural non-profits. She majored in History at Princeton. During the 1980s she earned a masters in Central and East European studies from the University of London, and was Editor of East/West Papers, a journal that featured independent writers and intellectuals operating under communist rule in Central and Eastern Europe. She currently serves on the board of the Oregon Historical Society. With her husband she has three children, two step-children and three grandchildren.
John is currently a Senior Managing Director of FTI Consulting, a publicly held global consulting firm based in Washington, DC. John joined FTI in 2006 as General Counsel.
Prior to joining FTI, John was Vice Chairman and General Counsel of The Travelers Companies and St. Paul Companies (prior to its merger with Travelers in 2005). He was also Executive Vice President of USF&G Corporation in Baltimore from 1989-1998 prior to it merger with the St. Paul Companies.
Previously, John served as a partner in the commercial litigation practice of DLA Piper in its Baltimore office and was a federal prosecutor in Maryland from 1978-81. He began his career as a law clerk in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit in Philadelphia. John graduated from Princeton University in 1970 and Georgetown Law School in 1973, where he served as Editor in Chief of the Georgetown Law Journal. John currently lives in Colorado and Indian Wells, California.
"I believe strongly in classic liberal values, such as free speech and free thought, and I believe that, in their mission of educating students and preparing them to contribute to the greater society, universities should promote such values and encourage robust debate on the leading issues of our time.”
Lawrence J. Haas, a former senior White House official and award-winning journalist, is a Senior Fellow at the American Foreign Policy Council. Haas writes widely on foreign affairs, is quoted often in newspapers and magazines, and appears frequently on TV and radio. At the White House, he was Communications Director for Vice President Gore and, before that, for the Office of Management and Budget. Haas writes a column on foreign affairs that appears in a variety of outlets. Over the years, his writings have appeared in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, USA Today, Newsweek, and scores of other newspapers and magazines. He has appeared on CNN, FOX, CNBC, the BBC, C-SPAN, the Voice of America, NPR, and many other TV and radio shows at home and abroad. He currently appears every Tuesday night as a commentator on CTV. He also has testified twice before Congress. Haas is the author of six books, including most recently "The Kennedys in the World: How Jack, Bobby, and Ted Remade America’s Empire" (2021). His most recent previous book was "Harry and Arthur: Truman, Vandenberg, and the Partnership That Created the Free World," which the Wall Street Journal named one of its top ten non-fiction books of 2016. Haas lives in Potomac, MD with his wife and daughter.
"I want Princeton to provide its current and future students the quality education it gave me. But when Princeton fails to protect free speech, it abdicates its basic educational responsibilities. Free speech at college prepares students for citizenship in a pluralistic democracy, where they will have to tolerate ideas and opinions that conflict with their own. If Princeton students are unable to do that, they will be unable to flourish in a complex and challenging world."
Robert Doar graduated Princeton University with a Bachelor of Arts in History. He served for nearly 20 years in leadership positions in the social service programs of New York State and New York City under Gov. George Pataki and Mayor Michael Bloomberg.
From 2007 to 2013, he was the commissioner of New York City’s Human Resources Administration, the nation’s largest municipal social services agency. Mr. Doar joined the American Enterprise Institute in 2014 to build out a new center devoted to the study of poverty and mobility. This program now hosts several leading voices in the national discussion on the importance of work, family, and personal responsibility to human flourishing.
In January 2019, Mr. Doar was selected by AEI’s Board of Trustees to be the Institute’s 12th president. He and his wife, Sara, have four children.
"Free speech is a core pillar of a democratic process. Protecting it is essential if we are to exist in a society that is equal, unbiased, objective, fair, and just."
Thomas N. Trkla is a member and the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Brookwood, which he founded in May 1993, and Chairman, Chief Executive Officer, and President of Brookwood Securities Partners, LLC, Brookwood’s wholly owned broker-dealer. He is also one of the founders of Yesway and has served as Yesway’s Chairman, Chief Executive Officer, and President since its formation.
He is the Chairman of Brookwood’s and Yesway’s Executive and Investment Committees. Mr. Trkla directs all aspects of Brookwood’s and Yesway’s businesses, including managing operations, shaping, and setting the company’s culture, values, and principles, assembling, and leading the senior management team, formulating and implementing investment and disposition strategies, and evaluating, structuring, and capitalizing the company’s acquisitions.
Mr. Trkla currently serves as an Advisory Committee member of the Massachusetts Campaign for Children, a non-profit statewide child advocacy organization, a Director of the Princeton Association of New England, a Director of the Foundation for Excellence in Higher Education, a Director of the Land Conservation Assistance Network (LandCAN), a member of the Advisory Council for the James Madison Society at Princeton University, and a member of the Urban Land Institute. In 2021, Mr. Trkla was named an Entrepreneur of The Year® 2021 Southwest Award winner by Ernst & Young LLP. Mr. Trkla holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Princeton University and a Master of Management degree from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. In 2004, he completed the Oxford Strategic Leadership Programme at the University of Oxford’s Saïd Business School.
"The free and open conversations I had at Princeton -- not only in the classroom but also with my friends -- were essential to my growth as a human and my understanding of the world around me. To see the place where I had these experiencing become stifled by the culture of fear and censorship that is so prevalent at universities (and beyond) today makes me tremendously sad and is something I want to fight!"
AB, Politics, magna cum laude, Princeton University, 1999 JD, University of Pennsylvania, 2002 Partner, Allen Harris PLLC. Wife to Brett and mother to three wonderful daughters ages 11, 13, and 14.
"I left Princeton with some views strengthened, some shaken, and some changed. Faculty offered the tools and frameworks for scholarly debate. Classmates shared their radically unfamiliar experiences and deeply-held opinions. At its best, Princeton gave reasonable people of goodwill the chance to scrutinize new positions and to revisit their own. Some asserted then, and more do now, that the time for difficult discussions has passed, and the final word—invariably theirs—has been spoken. They are mistaken. Princeton continues to attract some of the nation's brightest and most motivated students. Some may one day usher in a new consensus now unimaginable, while others stake out courageous dissenting positions. All deserve the chance to examine, exchange, and express ideas without fear of retaliation. To the extent that Princeton models itself "in the nation’s service and the service of humanity," it should train its students to seek the right and then defend it, not merely to assume it."
Mikhael Smits ’18 currently serves as an Infantry officer in the U.S. Army. Prior to commissioning, he worked for the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, in its Center on Military & Political Power. He previously studied at Harvard Law School and Pepperdine University’s School of Public Policy. At Princeton, he concentrated in the Department of Politics, receiving the Department’s Caroline M. Picard Prize in Politics and the Stephen Whelan ’68 Senior Thesis Prize for Excellence in Constitutional Law & Political Thought. He also received certificates in History & the Practice of Diplomacy, Near Eastern Studies, and Values & Public Life. He co-founded the Princeton Open Campus Coalition his sophomore year, and naturalized as a U.S. citizen after his junior year.
Abigail Anthony studied politics, linguistics, and creative writing at Princeton University. On campus, she served as President of the Princeton Federalist Society, Chief Copy Editor of The Princeton Tory, Vice President of the Princeton Open Campus Coalition, and Treasurer of the Network of Enlightened Women chapter. She has written for National Review, College Fix, the Washington Free Beacon, USA Today, and other publications.
“I used to think of Princeton as a kind of paradise. When I was a student, not that long ago, I faced almost no hostility for my outspoken conservative views. On the contrary: I felt celebrated and appreciated, by my peers, by my professors, and by the administration. How things have changed. Well-meaning whispers of agreement have been drowned out by heckles, as conservative and heterodox students are regularly ridiculed online by classmates and professors alike whenever they dare to voice their opinions. Meanwhile, the administrators have become spineless flatterers, pandering to the cruelest and loudest members of the community. We alumni have a responsibility to fight back, and I’m grateful to PFS for leading the charge.”
Princeton A.B. in Classics, 2017, summa cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa, Moses Taylor Pyne Honor Prize; University of Cambridge, MPhil in Classics, 2018, with distinction; University of Cambridge, PhD in Classics, 2022. Currently: Thomas W. Smith Postdoctoral Research Associate, James Madison Program in American Ideals and Institutions, Princeton. Published in AEIdeas, City Journal, Classical Quarterly, First Things, The Free Press, the Human Life Review, the New Criterion, Quillette, and the Spectator World; profiled in the New York Times; known to my haters as “Princeton’s resident blonde Christofascist tradwife” and known to one baby girl as “Mommy.”
Danielle Shapiro, hailing from West Orange, NJ, is a rising junior at Princeton University studying political theory. This summer Danielle is working as a Bartley Fellow for the Wall Street Journal's editorial features team. At school, she serves as President of Princeton’s Open Campus Coalition, a group committed to truth-seeking and defending free speech on campus. Additionally, she sits on Princeton’s Israel Advisory Board, a group tasked with assessing all Hillel-sponsored Israel programming on campus. She writes and edits for Princeton’s conservative and East Asian Studies journals, and her writing has also appeared in the Wall Street Journal. Danielle also serves on the board of Princeton’s Orthodox Jewish Community.
A retired federal judge on the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, appointed by President Bill Clinton. He graduated from Harvard Law School in 1973. He was a Princeton Trustee from 2000-2005.
Co-founder of HWVP Venture Partners. He was a member of Cottage Club, an All-American basketball player at Princeton, and played for six years in the NBA. After that he graduated from Stanford Business School in 1980 and co-founded Hummer-Winblad Venture Partners.
Former president of the student-run Princeton Open Campus Coalition and is a Ph.D. candidate in mechanical engineering at Carnegie Mellon University.