People

Brent S. Tantillo, Co-Founder & Contributing Writer

Brent Tantillo is an attorney working in Fort Lauderdale. Previously, Tantillo was Counsel and Legislative Assistant to Congressman Todd Akin of the Second District of Missouri. While working in the House of Representatives, Tantillo led the Judicial Accountability Working Group’s Strategic Action Team. In relation to these duties, Tantillo assisted Congressman Akin in authoring the Judicial Conduct Act. Additionally, he helped build a grassroots coalition to pass in the House, the Pledge Protection Act of 2005. Previously, he was research fellow and deputy director of the Projects for Civil Justice Reform and International Religious Liberty at the Hudson Institute where he authored the End Demand for Sex Trafficking Act, and co-authored the Advance Democracy Act (later Title XXI of the 9/11 Commission Act of 2007), The Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2003 and 2005, and the North Korea Human Rights Act, among others. He is also founding president of the Texas Review Society, through which he is publisher of the Texas Education Review, the Austin Review, the Houston Review, Texaminer (Texas A&M), and the Bear Review (Baylor University). He was a contributing editor to Choosing the Right College (Eerdmans, 2001) and Start the Presses: A Handbook for Student Journalists (ISI Books, 2000), and served for two years as associate editor of Campus Magazine. His writings have appeared in The Washington Times, Newsmax, American Outlook, Insight Magazine, The National Law Journal, and The Los Angeles Daily Times, among others.

From 1996 to 2003, Tantillo was a government affairs consultant for Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold, an international mining company; he has also worked as a political consultant for Houston mayoral candidate Orlando Sanchez, Congressman Ron Paul, Texas Republican Party Chairman Tom Pauken, and many others at the state and local level. He received a B.B.A. in finance from the University of Texas at Austin and a J.D. from the University of Houston. He is licensed to practice law in the District of Columbia. Tantillo co-founded the Democracy Project after leaving the Intercollegiate Studies Institute, where he was director of institutional advancement.

Winfield J. C. Myers, Co-Founder and Director

Winfield Myers is Director of Academic Affairs at the Middle East Forum in Philadelphia, where his duties include overseeing Campus Watch. Before coming to the Forum, he was managing editor of The American Enterprise magazine, a publication of the American Enterprise Institute in Washington, D.C. The former CEO of Democracy Project, he has longstanding interests in higher education, American politics and culture, and foreign policy. Principal author and editor of a college guide, Choosing the Right College, with an introduction by William Bennett (Eerdmans, 1998; 2001), he is also past editor of the ISI Study Guides to the Liberal Arts. He was formerly senior editor of the Intercollegiate Review and Campus Magazine and is author of a widely distributed pamphlet, “Asking the Right Questions in Choosing a College.”

His writings have appeared in the Wall Street Journal, National Review Online, The Weekly Standard, The Washington Times, American Thinker, The American Outlook, FrontPage Magazine, The Providence Journal, Insight Magazine, and the Texas Education Review, among other publications. He has been a guest on scores of radio shows, including the BBC and Radio New Zealand, and has appeared on the Fox News Channel’s Fox and Friends, local Fox networks, CBN, Australian SBS TV, and PAX TV as an education expert. A graduate of Young Harris College and the University of Georgia, Myers attended graduate school in history at Tulane University and the University of Michigan and has taught the Great Books in the honors college at Michigan and European history at the universities of Michigan and Georgia and at Tulane University and Xavier University of Louisiana. He served as senior editor and communications director at the Intercollegiate Studies Institute until leaving to co-found Democracy Project. Winfield Myers lives in Rome, Georgia.

Candace de Russy, Chairman

Dr. Candace de Russy is a nationally recognized writer and lecturer on education and cultural issues. A former college professor, she was appointed to the Board of Visitors of the U.S. Air Force Academy by President George W. Bush in 2002. She was a Member of the Board of Trustees of the State University of New York from 1995 until 2007. Dr. de Russy served on the SUNY Board’s Executive Committee, chaired its Academic Standards Committee, and was a member of its Ad Hoc Committee on Charter Schools. Throughout a career that has had at its center a deep commitment to the improvement of elementary, secondary and higher education, Dr. de Russy has led efforts to raise academic standards, strengthen general education, promote school choice, and bring accountability and efficiency to the academy. She holds a doctorate in French from Tulane University, a Master of Arts from Middlebury College’s Sorbonne-based program and a B.A. from St. Mary’s Dominican College of New Orleans.

A former Trustee of Westchester Community College, Dr. de Russy is currently a member of the Trustees Council of the American Council of Trustees and Alumni as well as a member of the Board of Directors of the National Association of Scholars. She serves on the Advisory Boards of the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education and the Independent Women’s Forum. She is a member of the Association of Literary Scholars and Critics and other professional societies. A contributing editor at Crisis magazine, Dr. de Russy has been published in the Chronicle of Higher Education, the New York Post, City Journal, Academic Questions, Heterodoxy, The Women’s Quarterly, and other publications. As an outspoken critic of the academic credentials of a college conference titled “Revolting Behavior: The Challenges of Women’s Sexual Freedom,” Dr. de Russy was featured in a segment on 60 Minutes. She has also publicly criticized the lowering of academic standards in a variety of multicultural studies, regarding which she was interviewed on The O’Reilly Factor. She has been the subject of feature articles in the New York Times, Village Voice, and other publications. In the inaugural issue of Ms. Magazine she was described as a “woman to watch out for.”

She previously served as a member of the Executive Committee of the National Committee on American Foreign Policy. Dr. de Russy was Executive Officer of the American Foundation for Resistance International, an organization which specialized in human rights abuses in the former Soviet Union. She was also a speaker on defense issues for the National Strategy Information Center. Dr. de Russy has delivered talks on a range of educational and cultural issues, taught a college seminar on “America and Historical Decline,” and has commented on education for radio station WAMC in Central New York State.

Herbert I. London, Vice Chairman and President

Herbert I. London is president of the Hudson Institute, a think-tank with headquarters in Washington.  For four decades, Dr. London wasthe John M. Olin University Professor of Humanities at New York University, where he was responsible for creating the Gallatin School of Individualized Study in 1972 and was its dean until 1992. He is also a graduate of Columbia University, 1960, and the recipient of a Ph.D. from New York University, 1966.

Dr. London is a noted social critic whose work has appeared in every major newspaper and journal in the country including such diverse publications as Commentary, National Review, American Spectator, Wall Street Journal, Fortune, Washington Times, New York Magazine, New York Times, Christian Science Monitor, Los Angeles Times, Washington Post, Orbis, Encounter, and Forbes. He is the author and editor of twenty-two books. In addition to Dr. London’s television program, “Myths that Rule America,” he created a 47 part C.B.S. series entitled “The American Character.” He has been a guest lecturer on many major radio and television news programs and at colleges and universities and has appeared as co-host on the popular CNN program, “Crossfire.”

He is the former chairman of the National Association of Scholars and is the erstwhile editor of Academic Questions. Dr. London is Executive producer of “Rodney King Incident.” He is presently a syndicated columnist with Knight-Ridder and was formerly syndicated by Bridge News. He is a contributing editor for St. Croix Review, The Social Critic, and American Arts Quarterly and is the publisher of American Outlook, the quarterly journal of the Hudson Institute. Dr. London is listed in the Outstanding People of the 21st Century; Directory of Distinguished Americans; Who’s Who in Education; Who’s Who in the East; Men of Distinction; Who’s Who in America, Kensington’s National Registry of Who’s Who and 2000 Outstanding Intellectuals of the 21st Century. He is a recipient of honorary degrees from the University of Aix-Marseille, 1983 and Grove City College, 1993. He has received a Presidential Citation from N.Y.U., is a recipient of the National Pro-Am Achievement Award, was the 1996 recipient of the Martin Luther King Award from the Congress of Racial Equality for Citizenship Achievement, was the 1997 recipient of the Jacques Maritain Society Award, was the first recipient of the Peter Shaw Award for his exemplary writing on higher education and American intellectual culture, was awarded the Templeton Honor Roll Award in 1997 as one of the nation’s exemplary professors. In 2000, he received the Ellis Island Medal of Honor, and in 2001 the American Jewish Congress Award.

In 1989, Dr. London was one of the Republican candidates for Mayor of New York City. In 1990 he was the Conservative Party Candidate for Governor of New York garnering more votes than any third party candidate in the state’s history. In 1994 he was the Republican Party candidate for New York State Comptroller losing in a close election. He is currently on the Hudson Institute Board of Directors; the Board of Directors of the National Chamber Foundation; the Board of Directors of the International Transportation Systems; the Board of Trustees for Merrill Lynch Assets Management, the Board of Directors of the National Association for Industry-Education Cooperation, the Board of Trustees of Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology, the Board of Advisors of the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, Inc., the Executive Advisory Board for the American Board for Certification in Homeland Security, and is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, New York City Cultural Affairs Commission, and the International Institute of Strategic Studies. He formerly served on the Board of Governors at St. John’s College and the Board of Overseers at the Center for Naval Analyses.

Wilfred M. McClay, Director

Wilfred M. McClay has been SunTrust Bank Chair of Excellence in Humanities at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, where he is also Professor of History, since 1999. He has also taught at Georgetown University, Tulane University, Johns Hopkins University, and the University of Dallas, and is currently Senior Scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, a Senior Fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center, and a member of the Society of Scholars at the James Madison Program of Princeton University. He was appointed in 2002 to the National Council on the Humanities, the advisory board for the National Endowment for the Humanities. He is author of The Masterless: Self and Society in Modern America (North Carolina, 1994), which won the 1995 Merle Curti Award of the Organization of American Historians for the best book in American intellectual history published in the years 1993 and 1994.

Among his other books is A Student’s Guide to U.S. History (ISI Books, 2001) and Religion Returns to the Public Square: Faith and Policy in Modern America (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2003). He is currently at work on a biographical study of the American sociologist David Riesman, which is under contract to Farrar, Straus & Giroux, and is editing two collection of essays: Figures in the Carpet: Finding the Human Person in the American Past, which features sixteen essays by American historians on changing American understandings of self and person; and a collection of his own essays entitled Pieces of a Dream: Historical and Critical Essays, to be published by Eerdmans. He held the Royden B. Davis Chair in Interdisciplinary Studies at Georgetown University for the academic year 1998-99. Among his other awards, McClay was selected for inclusion on the 1997-98 Templeton Honor Rolls, awarded by the John Templeton Foundation for distinguished teaching and scholarship in American higher education. In addition, he has been the recipient of fellowship awards from the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the National Academy of Education, the Howard Foundation, the Earhart Foundation, and the Danforth Foundation.

McClay is coeditor of Rowman and Littlefield’s book series entitled American Intellectual Culture, serves on the editorial boards of First Things, The Wilson Quarterly, The Public Interest, Society, American Quarterly, Touchstone, University Bookman, and Continuity, and is a frequent contributor to a wide variety of both scholarly and general-interest publications. He was educated at St. John’s College (Annapolis) and the Johns Hopkins University, where he received a Ph.D. in history in 1987.

Phil Orenstein, Contributing Writer

Phil Orenstein is a manufacturing manager and CNC programmer at Orics Industries Inc., a major global producer of automated food sealing and packaging systems based in Queens, NY. Formerly an adjunct lecturer of Computer Aided Design and Manufacturing at Queensborough Community College and Farmingdale State University, he additionally worked on curriculum development, Web design, outreach, and advocacy for manufacturing technology education. Previous to that, after a brief stint in substitute teaching, he teamed up with a privately funded progressive education program, REACH (Reading and Education for All Children), delivering lessons on drug prevention, self-esteem and conflict resolution to hundreds of public and private school classrooms throughout New York City.

He graduated from Stonybrook University with a BA in Studio Art in 1971 and later on commenced his graduate work at Queens College Division of Education. He studied CAD/CAM and manufacturing technologies in various continuing education programs at Pratt Institute, Parsons School of Design, and Queensborough Community College.

In the summer of 1968, Orenstein participated in the notorious anti-war demonstrations at the Democratic National Convention as a member of the Yippie Party (Youth International Party). Subsequently he joined the Soka Gakkai International (SGI), a Japan-based global Buddhist organization, United Nations NGO, and world peace movement. As a 30-year member, he made numerous pilgrimages to Japan and rose up the ranks to become a senior leader.

After witnessing systemic abuses within the SGI organization, Orenstein and some colleagues sought to institute democratic reforms. When their proposals backfired and they were dismissed from their leadership positions in 1999, Orenstein’s political and philosophical perspective took a complete 180 degree turn. He and some friends formed an advocacy group, Victorious America, Ltd to publicly remonstrate with the SGI. But after the terrorist attacks on 9/11, when their views became more hawkish, they chose to confine their efforts to influencing elected officials and swaying public opinion rather than trying to reform an intractable peace organization. One of the events sponsored by Victorious America was a rally in Washington, DC in front of the Lincoln Memorial in 2003 to rally mass support for our troops fighting in Iraq.

Orenstein has moved on to becoming actively involved in local New York City politics and academic reform. He and some colleagues have successfully lobbied state representatives to introduce legislation based on David Horowitz’s Academic Bill of Rights, which are now bills pending in the New York State Senate (S6336) and Assembly (A10098).

Currently, Orenstein is a County Committeeman in the 24th AD in New York, on the Board of Directors of the Queens Village Republican Club, and supports local candidates for public office. He participates with ProtestWarrior in patriotic counter demonstrations. His writings have appeared in FrontPage Magazine, Students for Academic Freedom, Arutz Sheva, Israel Insider, Israel National News, Time-Compression Technologies, Modern Applications News, Machine Design, and others. He lives in Queens, New York with his wife, Alma.

Laurie Morrow, Contributing Writer

Laurie Morrow, Ph.D. is President of Morrow Public Relations in Montpelier, Vermont. Prior to forming her own successful public relations consultancy, Dr. Morrow was Vermont’s leading conservative talk show host on True North Radio from 2001-2006. Dr. Morrow is a former full professor of English at Louisiana State University, Shreveport, and was a Salvatori Fellow of the Heritage Foundation. Dr. Morrow is a frequent guest on television and radio having appeared on The O’Reilly Factor and the G. Gordon Liddy Show, among others. Additionally, she is a frequent contributor to National Review, Frontpage Magazine and the World and I. Dr. Morrow serves on the Board of Directors of the National Association of Scholars and is President of the Vermont Association of Scholars. Dr. Morrow holds a B.A. in English from the University of Vermont, and a M.A. and Ph.D. in English from the University of Kansas.

Jay Bergman, Contributing Writer

Jay Bergman is Professor of History at Central Connecticut State University in New Britain Connecticut.  After graduating magna cum laude with honors in history from Brandeis University, he received two masters degrees and his doctorate, specializing in Russian history, from Yale University.  He is the author of Vera Zasulich: A Biography (Stanford University Press) and Meeting the Demands of Reason: The Life and Thought of Andrei Sakharov (Cornell University Press), which was an alternate selection of the History Book Club and has been reviewed favorably in Foreign Affairs, the Times Literary Supplement, and the London Review of Books.  He has also published articles in Russian and Soviet intellectual history.  He is currently a member of the board of directors of the National Association of Scholars, an organization committed to intellectual freedom, reasoned scholarship, and nondiscrimination, and has served since 1996 as the president of its Connecticut affiliate.  Since 2009 he has been a member of the Connecticut Advisory Committee to the United States Commission on Civil Rights.  Articles he has written on contemporary politics and higher education have appeared in the Washington Times, Jerusalem Post, Hartford Courant, Providence Journal, and regional newspapers in Connecticut.

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