American Atheists has a team of full time staff members located at its National Headquarters in Cranford, New Jersey and additional staff based in Washington, DC.
David Silverman is President of American Atheists and was the creator and Executive Producer of the 2012 Reason Rally. He earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science from Brandeis University, his MBA in Marketing from Penn State, and his CAGS in International Business from Seton Hall. Dave served as a professional inventor at Bell Labs for 8 years (74 issued patents) and a Marketing Director for Natural Microsystems.
He has been an atheist since he was 6-years-old. Dave became an activist in 1996 and soon became New Jersey State Director. He also founded the Alliance of Lucent and AT&T Atheists and Secularists, the first employee club of its kind. He was tapped to be the National Spokesperson in 2004, and then was named Vice President in 2008. The Board of Directors elected Dave as President in September of 2010.
Mr. Silverman has appeared on most major news programs including The O’Reilly Factor (spawning the famous “WTF meme-face”), The Real Story with Gretchen Carlson, Ronan Farrow Daily, Scarborough Country, CNN’s Paula Zahn NOW, Nick News, Hannity and Colmes, FOX and Friends, NPR’s All Things Considered, and many more.
Dave can be reached via email, on Twitter (@MrAtheistPants), or at (908) 276-7300.
National Program Director
Nick Fish is a civil rights and civil liberties activist with extensive fundraising and grassroots organizing experience with many of the nation’s most prominent political organizations and progressive non-profits. A native of Michigan, Nick studied political science at Albion College before working in Raleigh, North Carolina managing a voter outreach office that registered more than 5,000 new voters and knocked on 25,000 doors in the two months leading up to the 2008 election.
Since then, Nick has worked in donor outreach, marketing, fundraising, and field organizing, most recently as the Development Manager for the Secular Coalition for America and previously serving as Development Director of American Atheists.
As National Program Director, Nick works with the American Atheists staff to develop messaging and outreach strategies, particularly in the arena of politics and policy, engages local activists to amplify the voices of atheists in public discourse, and oversees programs like AtheistVoter. Nick has appeared on Fox News’ Hannity, Fox and Friends, and countless local news programs as a spokesman for American Atheists.
Nick can be reached via email, on Twitter (@NotNickFish), or at (908) 276-7300 x8.
Membership Director, Editor-in-Chief American Atheist Magazine
Pamela Whissel has been editor-in-chief of American Atheist magazine since 2011. Her M.A. is from the University of Cincinnati and her B.A. is from the University of Dayton. Prior to coming to American Atheists, she was a local news anchor for a National Public Radio affiliate in Kentucky, a television news writer for the CBS station in Cincinnati, and an announcer for Cincinnati’s public television pledge drives.
Under her direction, the magazine made publishing history when it went from a subscription-only publication to one that is sold in bookstores throughout the US and Canada. In doing so, American Atheist has become the first periodical in US history to appear on newsstands with the word “atheist” in the title.
In addition, Pamela oversees membership programs and the growth of American Atheists’ member support network.
Pamela can be reached via email or at (908) 276-7300 x7
Geoffrey Blackwell joined American Atheists in September 2016. As Staff Attorney, he responds to reports of possible violations of the separation between religion and government, works with government officials to find mutually acceptable solutions to potential issues, and manages litigation if issues cannot be resolved amicably.
Prior to joining the staff of American Atheists, Geoffrey served as Associate Counsel in a New Jersey civil litigation firm. Since May of 2014, he has hosted All Too Common Law, a news podcast with a legal perspective. Every year, he volunteers as a judge for the Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition, in which law students from 87 countries compete in a simulation of a fictional dispute between countries before the International Court of Justice. He previously served as a member of the Board of Directors of the New Jersey Humanist Network.
While earning his JD from Rutgers School of Law, he participated in the school’s Human Rights Advocacy and Litigation Clinic, served as the President of the Rutgers-Camden International Law Society, and independently researched religious discrimination in employment. Prior to law school, he received a Bachelor’s degree in political science from Columbia College.
Geoffrey can be reached via email, on Twitter (@BlackwellEsq), or at (908) 276-7300 x10.
Jim G. Helton
National Field Organizer
Jim G. Helton is the National Field Organizer for American Atheists. After attending the 2012 Reason Rally, he co-founded the Tri-State Freethinkers and was appointed American Atheists’ Kentucky State Director. Under his leadership, Tri-State Freethinkers adopted the highway in front of the Creation Museum and Ark Encounter and led a protest that received international attention. He played a key role in eliminating Gideon’s bible distributions in public schools and removing abstinence-only sex education.
Mr. Helton’s activism at the Creation Museum and Ark Encounter landed him appearances in the 2017 documentary film Bill Nye: Science Guy and the forthcoming documentary We Believe in Dinosaurs. He has been quoted in countless news outlets, including The New York Times, Miami Herald, and Washington Post. He is a fixture in local media and has given interviews for international television specials in France, Switzerland, and elsewhere.
As National Field Organizer, Mr. Helton works with affiliates, local partners, and state directors to challenge religious privilege and fight to protect church/state separation at the local level by building coalitions around specific issue campaigns, including medically accurate sex education, LGBT non-discrimination ordinances, and religious exemptions.
Sonia Fisher has worked with American Atheists since 2015. She oversees the fulfillment of orders from the American Atheists store, handles accounts receivable and payable, and serves as the primary point of contact for vendors and contractors who work with American Atheists. Sonia manages American Atheists’ state registrations, auditing, and inventory. Before joining American Atheists, Sonia worked with Operating Engineers Local 825.
Sonia can be reached via email or at (908) 276-7300 x3