2014 National Convention
American Atheists will be offering activist training sessions during the first day of our National Convention, Thursday, April 17, 2014.
Our workshop training sessions will feature activists, leaders, and experts in a variety of subjects who will work with participants in an intensive, hands-on, 2-hour course on a wide variety of topics. Two workshops will run concurrently, so participants will have to choose which they would prefer to attend.
Admission to these workshops is not included with the regular convention admission price. If you would like to attend these activist training workshops, you may attend all three sessions for just $99.
Session 1 (10:00am - 12:00pm)
So You Want To Start Your Own Group...?
Work with members of the American Atheists staff, including National Affiliate Director Grag Lammers, Development Director Nick Fish, and Public Relations Director Dave Muscato on the ins-and-outs of starting a local atheist group. Topics will include: finding members, working with your local media, organizing meetings, and general best-practices for any new group.
So You Want To Debate Christians...?
Featuring expert debaters Matt Dillahunty, JT Eberhard, and Jamila Bey, you will learn how to change minds and debate Christians in both formal and informal settings. If you think debating doesn't actually change minds, Matt, JT, and Jamila are going to change yours.
Session 2 (1:00pm - 3:00pm)
So You Think You Know Islam...?
If you want to hear first-hand about being a Muslim apostate, come work with Maryam Namazie and Faisal Saeed Al-Mutar as they give you an insider's look at leaving your religion in Iraq and Iran. Maryam and Faisal will give you the tools you need to talk (and debate) about Islam, particularly the brands of Islam which has given rise to anti-free-speech policies throughout the world.
So You Want To Be A Lobbyist...?
Do you think that "lobbyist" is a bad word in Washington? That only powerful special interests have lobbyists? Amanda Knief, Edwina Rogers, and Barry Lynn are here to change your mind. With nearly 50 years of combined lobbying experience, these three veterans of Capitol Hill will help you make your voice heard in Washington DC and in your state capital.
Session 3 (3:30pm - 5:30pm)
So You Want To Run For Office...?
There has only ever been one out atheist in the United States Congress. We need to change that. The first step is running for local office. People like Cecil Bothwell and Juan Mendez have had the courage to speak out and we're going to show you how to run for (and win) elected office. Eddie Tabash, Amanda Knief, Nick Fish and a special guest will talk about the basics of starting and running a campaign for elected office.
So You Want To Be On Fox News...?
Live appearances on national media outlets are not for the faint of heart. But they are a necessary and effective way of raising awareness about the work that our groups do and the importance of being an "out" atheist in the United States. Learn how to work with local media to get out the word about your group and how to handle yourself on television with David Silverman, Dave Muscato, and journalist Jamila Bey.