april 3-5, 2020 | washington, dc
THE MARRIOTT MARQUIS

april 3-5, 2020
washington, dc 
the marriott marquis
  

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WHAT TO EXPECT AT LIBERTYCON
INSPIRING SPEAKERS
In the past we’ve had speakers like Governor Gary Johnson, Edward Snowden and Steve Forbes, to name just a few. This year, John Mackey, Miriam Isa, Vernon Smith, Nassim Taleb and other stellar speakers will take the stage to inspire and challenge us.
EDUCATIONAL BREAKOUT SESSIONS
Our keynotes inspire; our sessions empower. You get actionable tools to create change. Last year, our schedule included Republican and Democratic candidates for president, debates on hot topics such as universal basic income, panels on tech policy, cannabis, immigration and hit breakouts such as arguments libertarians shouldn’t make, the Muslim case for liberty and permission less innovation.
CONNECT. ENGAGE. BE FREE.
LibertyCon isn’t just a conference, it’s an experience! With 1,200+ attendees from business, tech, academia, marketing and more, the networking opportunities are endless. Grab a drink at an evening social and dance to our DJ, find your next opportunity at the career fair, or explore the bustling DC scene during the stunning Cherry Blossom season.


SPEAKERS
At LibertyCon, we connect you to extraordinary speakers who are changing the world across all sectors — academia, business, crypto, investing, journalism, nonprofits, and policy.

John Mackey

Whole Foods Co-Founder & CEO

John Mackey

Whole Foods Co-Founder & CEO

John Mackey, co-founder and CEO of Whole Foods Market, has led the natural and organic grocer to a $15.7 billion Fortune 500 company with more than 460 stores and 87,000 team members in three countries. The company has been included on Fortune magazine’s “100 Best Companies to Work For” list for 20 consecutive years.

Mackey has been recognized as one of Fortune's "World's 50 Greatest Leaders," Ernst & Young’s “Entrepreneur of the Year Overall Winner for the United States,” Institutional Investor’s “Best CEO in America,” Barron’s “World’s Best CEO,” MarketWatch’s “CEO of the Year,” Fortune’s “Businessperson of the Year,” and Esquire’s “Most Inspiring CEO.”

A strong believer in free market principles, Mackey co-founded the Conscious Capitalism Movement (http://consciouscapitalism.org/) and co-authored a New York Times and Wall Street Journal best-selling book entitled “Conscious Capitalism: Liberating the Heroic Spirit of Business” (Harvard Business Review Press 2013) to boldly defend and reimagine capitalism, and encourage a way of doing business that is grounded in ethical consciousness.

 

Miriam Isa

Media Personality

Miriam Isa

Media Personality

Pop culture expert. Political commentator. 300 million YouTube views. Donut eating champ at her local Hooters. Miriam Isa’s journey… is anything but normal.

 

Miriam has worked as a producer and correspondent on E! News, ESPN Deportes, Al Jazeera’s BeIn Sport and YouTube’s Clevver Media. Born to a Cuban Lebanese family, she graduated from Florida State University’s School of Drama with a BA in Theater. In 2011, she co-launched Clevver Media’s Clevver Teve – YouTube’s most viewed Spanish-language entertainment news channel. She has hosted, directed and produced across all of Clevver’s network and is a fan favorite on several of their most viral series, like the uber successful Cheat Day. Miriam was also the first ever E! News personality hired by the network to host AND produce her own shows, because Miriam strongly believes in the power of shaping her own content. The network agreed.

Miriam’s roster of interviews spans the gamut - from Academy Award recipients to political prisoners to Super Bowl winners. In addition, Miriam has cultivated a strong following for her political and cultural commentary.

In between shoots and donut-eating competitions, Miriam can either be found globetrotting, trying foods she can’t pronounce, or planning her outfits for Burning Man.

Vernon Smith

Nobel Prize Winner

Vernon Smith

Nobel Prize Winner

Vernon L. Smith, George L. Argyros Chair in Finance and Economics and President,
International Foundation for Research in Experimental economics

He was awarded the Nobel Prize in Economics, 2002, for having established
laboratory experiments as a tool in empirical economic analysis, especially in the study of
alternative market mechanisms; has held appointments at Purdue University, Stanford, Brown, University of Massachusetts, USC, California Institute of Technology, U. of
Arizona, U. of Alaska-Anchorage, George Mason University, and Chapman University.
Professor Smith received his bachelor's degree in Electrical Engineering from California
Institute of Technology (1949), his masters in Economics from the University of Kansas
(1951), and his Ph.D. in Economics from Harvard (1955). He has authored or co-
authored over 300 articles and books on capital theory, finance, natural resource
economics, experimental economics, the housing origins of economic instability, 1920-
2014, and in 2018, Humanomics, Cambridge press, with Bart Wilson.

Professor Smith is a Fellow of the Econometric Society, and the American
Association for the Advancement of Science. Purdue University awarded him an
Honorary Doctor of Management degree in 1989. He was elected member, National
Academy of Science, 1995. In 1996 he received Cal Tech's Distinguished Alumni Award.
He became Kansan of the year (Topeka Gazette) in 2002, received a Distinguished
Alumni award from the University of Kansas in 2011 and in 2014 an Honorary Doctor of
Science degree. He has served on numerous editorial and editorial advisory boards, and
as president of several national economic associations. He has served as a consultant on
the liberalization of electric power in Australia and New Zealand, and has participated in
numerous private and public discussions of energy privatization and liberalization in the
United States and around the world. In 1997 he served as a Blue Ribbon Panel Member,
North American Electric Reliability Council.

Nassim Nicholas Taleb

Author

Nassim Nicholas Taleb spent 21 years as a risk taker (quantitative  trader) before becoming a researcher in philosophical, mathematical and (mostly) practical problems with probability.

Taleb is the author of a multivolume essay, the Incerto (The Black Swan, Fooled by Randomness, Antifragile, and Skin in the Game) covering broad facets of uncertainty. It has been translated into 39 languages.

In addition to his trader life, Taleb has also written, as a backup of the Incerto, more than 70 scholarly papers in statistical physics, statistics, philosophy, ethics, economics, international affairs, and quantitative finance, all around the notion of risk and probability.

Taleb is currently Distinguished Professor of Risk Engineering at NYU's Tandon School of Engineering (only a quarter time position) [and, finance related bio only: scientific advisor for Universa Investments]. His current focus is on the properties of systems that can handle disorder ("antifragile").

Taleb refuses all honors and anything that "turns knowledge into a spectator sport".

Magatte Wade

Director, Center for African Prosperity

Magatte Wade

Director, Center for African Prosperity

Magatte Wade is a serial entrepreneur, inspirational speaker, and visionary business leader with a passion for creating positive change in Africa. She is the founder and CEO of SkinIsSkin.com, “the lip balm with a mission,” and is dedicated to reducing discrimination while creating jobs and prosperity in her home country of Senegal. Throughout her career, she has created successful high-end retail brands inspired by diverse African traditions. She is a Forbes “20 Youngest Power Women in Africa”, a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum at Davos, a TED Global Africa Fellow, and "Leading Woman in Wellness” award winner by the Global Wellness Summit. Wade also serves on the Advisory Board of the Whole Planet Foundation, of Whole Foods Market. She has written for The Guardian, HuffingtonPost.com, and Barron’s, and is a frequent speaker at business conferences and on college campuses, including Harvard, Yale, Columbia, Cornell, MIT, and the Wharton School of Business.

Watch Magatte Wade in “How We Thrive: Made in Mekhé,” A FEE documentary about doing business in her home country of Senegal. 

Watch Magatte Wade on “The Power of Entrepreneurship” at FEECon

Watch Magatte Wade’s TED Talk, “Why it’s too hard to start a business in Africa—and how to change it.”

Dr. Rainer Zitelmann

Historian, Author

Dr. Rainer Zitelmann

Historian, Author

Dr. Rainer Zitelmann holds doctorates in history and sociology. In the late 1980s and early 1990s, he worked at the Central Institute for Social Science Research at the Free University of Berlin. He was then appointed section head at the major daily newspaper, Die Welt. In 2000, he founded a real estate public relations company. Having established the company as the market leader, he sold it in 2016. Zitelmann is the author of 23 books, which have been translated into numerous languages and published all around the world. In March 2020, his book "Upward Classism" will be published.

Matt Warner

President of Atlas Network

Matt Warner

President of Atlas Network

Matt Warner is president of Atlas Network. Under the direction of the CEO, he is responsible for strategy, programming, and personnel management. Matt also leads the development of a research agenda to further demonstrate the invaluable role of think tanks in achieving freedom around the world. Matt is the editor of Poverty and Freedom: Case Studies on Global Economic Development and coined the term "the outsider's dilemma" to describe the challenge of helping low-income countries develop without inadvertently and perversely getting in the way of their most viable paths to prosperity. Matt writes, speaks, and consults internationally on the topics of economics, institution building, nonprofit management, measurement, and impact philanthropy. His work has appeared in Cato Journal, Forbes, The Hill, Harvard's Education Next, Real Clear Markets, Foundation for Economic Education, EconTalk, and Washington Times, among others. Prior to joining Atlas Network in 2010, Matt served in various policy leadership positions at nonprofit think tanks with a focus on energy, education, and property rights. Matt has a master's degree in economics from George Mason University and is certified by Georgetown University in organizational development consulting. He is also a 2019-2020 Penn Kemble Fellow with the National Endowment for Democracy, a member of American Enterprise Institute's Leadership Network and a recipient of America's Future Foundation's 2019 Buckley Award.

Matt and his wife Chrissy, an attorney, live in Vienna, Virginia with their four children.

Katherine Mangu-Ward

Editor in Chief of Reason

Katherine Mangu-Ward

Editor in Chief of Reason

Katherine Mangu-Ward is editor in chief of Reason, the magazine of “free minds and free markets.” A few of her more memorable cover stories include a defense of plastic bags, an argument for why you almost certainly shouldn’t vote, and a welcome to our new robot overlords.

She started as Reason intern in 2000, and has worked at The Weekly Standard and The New York Times.

Her writing has appeared in The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, The Los Angeles TimesSlate, and numerous other publications. She is a frequent commentator on radio and television networks such as National Public Radio, CNBC, C-SPAN, Fox Business, Fox News Channel, and MSNBC. She is a Future Tense Fellow at New America.

Mangu-Ward is a graduate of Yale University, where she received a B.A. in philosophy and political science. She lives in Washington, D.C.

Robby Soave

Senior Editor, Reason

Robby Soave

Senior Editor, Reason

Robby Soave is a senior editor at Reason. He enjoys writing about culture, politics, education policy, criminal justice reform, television, and video games. His work has also appeared in The New York TimesThe Daily Beast, U.S. News & World Report, The Orange County Register, and The Detroit News. In 2016Forbes named him to the “30 Under 30” list in the category of law and policy. In 2017, he became a Novak Fellow at The Fund for American Studies. He also serves on the D.C. Advisory Committee to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights.

Soave won widespread recognition for setting the record straight in two infamous cases of media malpractice: the 2014 Rolling Stone hoax article about sexual assault at the University of Virginia, and the 2019 incident involving Catholic high school students at the Lincoln Memorial. He won a Southern California Journalism Award for discrediting the former; his writings about the latter prompted several mainstream media outlets to apologize for having wrongly smeared the boys.

A Detroit native, and a graduate of the University of Michigan, Soave now lives in Washington, D.C. with his wife, Carrie, and their two Yorkies, Caesar and Oliver.

His first book, Panic Attack: Young Radicals in the Age of Trump, is currently available for purchase.

Craig Biddle

Editor, The Objective Standard

Craig Biddle

Editor, The Objective Standard

Craig Biddle is editor in chief of The Objective Standard and executive director of Prometheus Foundation. His books include Loving Life: The Morality of Self-Interest and the Facts that Support ItRational Egoism: The Morality for Human Flourishing; and the forthcoming Forbidden Fruit for Teens: Moral Truths Your Parents, Preachers, and Teachers Don’t Want You to Know. His book in progress is “Thinking in Principles.”

Titus Gebel

Founder, President & CEO of Free Private Cities Inc.

Titus Gebel

Founder, President & CEO of Free Private Cities Inc.

Titus Gebel is founder, President & CEO of Free Private Cities Inc. He is a German entrepreneur with a PhD in international law and an extensive worldwide network. Amongst others, he founded Frankfurt-listed mining company Deutsche Rohstoff AG, retired as their CEO in 2015 and emigrated with his family to Monaco. With Free Private Cities, he wants to create an entirely new product in the “market of living together”. If successful, it will fast-track knowledge and progress for humanity. Titus has written the book "Free Private Cities – Making Governments Compete For You“, where he is stating the theoretical and practical groundwork. At the same time he is working with his partners to make the worldwide first Free Private City a reality.

Dale Woolridge

Ph.D.

Dale Woolridge has a scientifically-oriented Ph.D. in social psychology from The University of Texas at Austin. He has worn many hats as a manager for government and consulting firms and has taught college courses in psychology.

MORE SPEAKERS TO BE ANNOUNCED. . .
DEBATES
David Friedman vs. Timothy Sandefur
Is Government Necessary?
Gene Epstein vs. Steven Pearlstein
For capitalism to survive, should the US government take a pro-active role in directly addressing the problem of inequality?
MORE DEBATES TO BE ANNOUNCED. . .
SFL AWARDS DINNER
Celebrate freedom with the liberty movement's best and brightest!

WHERE: Marriott Marquis in Washington, D.C.
DATE: Saturday, April 4, 2020 
TIME: 6:30pm Reception, 7:30pm Dinner
ATTIRE: Formal

The SFL Awards Dinner brings together friends and supporters of Students For Liberty to celebrate our top student leaders and enjoy a meal together as we reflect on the previous year’s big wins for freedom.
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