AEU 103rd Assembly in Albuquerque

07 Jun 2018 - 10 Jun 2018 | 09:00 pm - 04:00 pm

Seeds for the Future: Environmental Justice and Ethical Culture

Thursday, June 7, 7pm to Sunday, June 10, 2pm MT (times above are ET)

REGISTER HERE Donate to Voices at the Table Fund

Ethical Culture holds sacred, and strives to protect and nurture, the web of interrelations between each other and our environment. Climate change adversely affects everyone, but especially marginalized populations in this country and around the world who bear the brunt of polluted air, water, and soil. We must help stop the environmental degradation of inner cities, poor rural areas, and places where many indigenous people live. Come learn more about environmental justice so we can plant seeds that grow into effective activism for the benefit of everyone now and in the future. There will also be workshops on best practices for growing our movement. Join us in person and follow us on Facebook and Twitter with #ethicalseeds2018.

In an effort to nurture greater diversity at our annual AEU Assemblies, we established a Voices at the Table Fund. These funds are intended to help those for whom the financial cost of traveling to, and registering for, the Assembly are prohibitive, particularly younger members, people of color, and other marginalized groups. Click here to donate, check “I would like to designate this donation to a specific fund,” and select Voices at the Table in Designated Fund dropdown menu. Or make a check out to the American Ethical Union and write “Voices at the Table Fund” in the memo.

  • Sheraton Albuquerque Uptown
    2600 Louisiana Blvd NE, Albuquerque, NM 87110

    Click here to make reservation online or call 1-800-325-3535 & ask for AEU rate
    Special American Ethical Union room rate is $109 per night plus tax (ends May 11) — Parking is Free
    Shuttle to and from the Airport is $17.95 each way and can be arranged by filling out Charter Luxury Services online form and selecting “AEU18” for Conference group (payment is due in advance and is non-refundable). For details about their services please see this pdf.

    Bobette Spence, Meeting and Planning Travel Consultant, is available to help you book your transportation. Remember to book flights early to get best possible rates.
    Office: (516) 773-3700 or (800) 437-9685 Ext. 301
    Mobile: (347) 495-8742

    • Click to open up each day’s schedule. Schedule is subject to change.
    • Tuesday, June 5, 2018

      2:00pm-6:00pm: National Leaders Council Meeting

    • Wednesday, June 6, 2018

      9:00am-5:00pm: National Leaders Council Meeting

    • Thursday, June 7, 2018

      8:00am-12:00pm: National Leaders Council Meeting

      9:00am-5:00pm: AEU Board of Directors Meeting

      1:00pm-2:00pm: AEU Board and NLC Lunch

      2:00pm-6:00pm: Leadership Committee Meeting

      1:15pm-5:00pm: Pre-Assembly “Bosque Restoration” Service Outing (see Service Action Project tab)

      4:00pm-7:00pm: Registration HALLWAY

      7:00pm-9:00pm: AEU Assembly Kick-Off Reception (cash bar & finger foods) IVORY

      9:00pm-11:00pm: AEU Summer School Reunion IVORY

    • Friday, June 8, 2018

      8:00am-6:00pm: Registration Open HALLWAY

      8:00am-6:00pm: Exhibits Open IVORY

      8:00am-6:00pm: Gathering Room EBONY

      Come take a break, hold a meeting, exchange ideas, or relax with friends.

      8:00am-9:00am: Colloquy w. Christian Hayden EBONY

      9:15am-9:55am: Welcome & State of the Union REGAL

      10:00am-11:30am: AEU Business Meeting (delegates materials) REGAL

      10:00am-11:30am: Morning Workshop

      Uranium and the Nuclear Fuel Chain: Impacts to Human Health and the Environment in New Mexico SONATA

      Susan Gordon & guests

      Our presentation will cover the history of uranium extraction and the legacy of contamination left behind in the Grants Mining District. This area extends from Laguna Pueblo west to the Arizona border. It includes the communities of Laguna Pueblo, Acoma Pueblo, Grants, Milan, Churchrock, Gallup, and into the Navajo Nation. During the uranium boom from the 1940s -1980s, this area produced more uranium that any other district in the world and produced more than half of all the uranium used by the United States for its nuclear weapons program. This extensive mining left a devastating legacy of contaminated air, land, and water, and thousands of sick workers and community members. We will look at the impacts to water, ongoing environmental cleanup work at Superfund sites, and how we collaboratively work to address systemic problems caused by the uranium industry. Indigenous speakers will share their personal stories working in uranium mines and living in contaminated communities. Participants will be invited to join with us in sending messages to decision-makers urging compensation and health care for uranium workers and downwind communities harmed by nuclear test explosions.

      11:45am-1:00pm: Anna Garlin Spencer Volunteer Awards Luncheon WURLITZER

      1:15pm-2:45pm Workshop Session I

      Get Ready for the Next Generation SERENADE

      Emily Newman & Kevin Bolling

      Millennials and Gen Zers are more secular and social justice oriented than previous generations. So why aren’t they filling our ethical communities? Come learn how to attract them to visit and encourage them to engage. We will discuss stereotypes, learn from research, hear stories from Millennials and Gen Zers connected to the Ethical Movement, and review presenter recommendations.

      Ethical Culture, Earth, and our Vision for the Future

      Hugh Taft-Morales, James Croft, & Randy Best REGAL

      Leaders Hugh Taft-Morales and Randy Best offer some Ethical Humanist frameworks for understanding environmental activism, followed by an hour-long visioning group exercise led by Leader James Croft. James will ask participants to imagine what the world would look like if we achieved environmental justice. Through pictures and evocative descriptions, participants will examine the concept of environmental justice by imagining the end goal—what sort of world do we actually want? A guided discussion will follow.

      Ethics, Spirituality, and Climate Justice: Engagement with Faith Communities in Climate Justice and the New Mexico Reality as a Sacrificial Zone SONATA

      Sr. Joan Brown

      NMIPL will offer a powerpoint that incorporates how faith communities are addressing climate justice in New Mexico. We will also touch upon energy issues such as oil and gas and nuclear (on the spent fuel rod end) and how these are justice, intergenerational justice, and environmental justice concerns. We will share what we are doing to address these and how we talk about the concerns through an ethical, moral, and spiritual lens. We would hope to engage the attendees in something they can directly or in solidarity.

      3:00pm-4:30pm Workshop Session II

      OutReach – How is YOUR Society Perceived and Identified by Your Local Public? SONATA

      Liz Singer, Jill Aul, Bill Aul, & Richard Koral

      What is the difference between public relations and advertising? Knowing the difference will enhance the effectiveness of your Society’s outreach. Good outreach will energize existing members and newcomers as well as new seekers. This workshop will explore these questions as well as offer insights and methods that your Society can use to gain market share. We will develop plans, examples and templates to take back and apply in your home Society. The topics will include: Public Relations (PR), Marketing, Advertising, Elevator Speech, and Logos & Taglines.

      Humanism, Skepticism, Atheism, Non-Theism and other Heresies REGAL

      Randy Wall, Babs Mondschein, Cory Corwin, & Don Lacey

      Come for a discussion of the similarities and differences between these “isms,” and how organizations serving non-believers can work in collaboration while remaining true to their respective philosophies. Representatives from a spectrum of Albuquerque organizations will share their mission as we seek to clarify common concerns. What tips are there to help us work together to create different shades of freethought communities while trying to create a more rational, compassionate world? What might national groups offer to support these groups?

      Why We Must Resist Factory Farming SERENADE

      Amy Halpern-Laff & Judith D. Wallach, PhD

      Factory farming, or Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations (CAFOs), where 99% of animal-based products are sourced, is a primary driver of climate change, rainforest destruction, air and water pollution, and vast oceanic dead zones. CAFOs disproportionately devastate poor communities and communities of color. As citizens, consumers, and especially as humanists, we must resist the Agriculture Industrial Complex. I’ll explain factory farming—what it is and why it’s so devastating to social justice, the planet, and public health. Then we’ll divide into groups and discuss how we can most effectively resist Big Ag.

      5:00pm-6:00pm: AEU Business Issues Discussion – Budget & Finance SERENADE

      5:00pm-6:00pm: Progress on Racial Justice Discussion (open to all) REGAL

      6:30pm-7:45pm Dinner WURLITZER

      8:00pm-10:00pm Concert with Son of Hwéeldi WURLITZER

      Son of Hwéeldi music is a rich blend of rock, soul, blues, and a touch of world beat. The lyrics recount the political unrest of the times and work towards resistance messaging through song. In the late 1800’s, US termination and assimilation policies dealing with “Indians” and were carried out in heartless fashion by the US military. Hwéeldi is the name of the 1864 forced march of Navajo and Apache by Kit Carson under the orders of the U.S. government. JJ Otero, lead singer and guitarist, is Navajo and Hopi. The band name honors his ancestors and fuels continued resistance by Navajo and Apache people today. Resistance always includes culture, music, song, dances, ceremony, and art and with that understanding, Son of Hwéeldi continues to create. Otero is joined by Joe Pacheco (bass guitar), Doug Bellen (keyboards), and Pax Garcia (percussion).

    • Saturday, June 9, 2018

      8:00am-6:00pm: Registration Open HALLWAY

      8:00am-6:00pm: Exhibits Open IVORY

      8:00am-6:00pm: Gathering Room EBONY

      Come take a break, hold a meeting, exchange ideas, or relax with friends.

      8:00am-9:00am: Colloquy w. Anne Klaeysen EBONY

      8:00am-9:00am: President’s Council Meeting SONATA

      9:15am-11:30am: Keynote Program with Roy Speckhardt, American Humanist Association, & Rick Chavolla, American Indian Community House REGAL

      11:45am-1:00pm: National Ethical Service Luncheon with Richard Moore WURLITZER

      From Grassroots to Globe: Environmental and Economic Justice from Local, Regional, National, and International Perspectives

      Richard Moore will share lessons from his 53 years as an activist that show how we must work at all levels for environmental justice and to save the planet. He is Program Director for Los Jardines Institute in Albuquerque and national Co-Coordinator of the Environmental Justice & Health Alliance for Chemical Policy Reform. (See full bio in Speakers tab.)

      1:15pm-2:45pm Workshop Session III

      Social Media on a Shoestring SERENADE

      Louise Jett

      Effective social media accounts can help almost any community grow. Even though social media is more about building relationships and making connections than it is about technology, approaches to social media marketing can be confusing and overwhelming. By demystifying best practices and free online tools, I will help empower Ethical Societies to better tell their stories and reach more people. Regardless of experience, attendees will learn social media basics, best practices, and free (or inexpensive) techniques to help spread brand awareness and recruit new members. The presentation will also include information on how to report back to Ethical Society boards on social media marketing efforts and how to turn current members into social media super fans. Come learn, brainstorm, and collaborate.

      Crafting Experience(s): Building Community Through Reflection and Dialogue SONATA

      Christian Hayden

      What makes a community? What should it explore together, and how? Christian Hayden, community educator and 2016 Mossler Fellow will lead a workshop on his process of crafting experiences that are tailored to creating spaces for communities to explore and deepen their relationships. Expect a tactical experience, littered with anecdotes and hands on exercises, which can serve as an introduction in engaging life’s bigger question and building a community to address them. Bring questions that challenge or intrigue your Society.

      Lessons from Environmental Activism in New Mexico REGAL

      Esther Abeyta, Steven Abeyta, & Kitty Richards

      From petroleum tanks threatening rare urban natural habitats to the effects of large sewage and solid waste facilities, the Albuquerque area confronts a lot of environmental issues. How can local communities, particularly underserved and underrepresented areas, coordinate successful environmental justice campaigns? How do ecological concerns support broad-based multi-ethnic activism?

      3:00pm-4:30pm Workshop Session IV

      Ethical Action Through Community Outreach SERENADE

      Dr. Carolyn A. Parker

      Centering on an educational program (“The Lazy Person’s Guide to Saving the World”) for individual action in support of Sustainable Development Goals, the workshop will emphasize climate change but provide materials to approach other social and environmental issues. The workshop will first look at how to use the program in the local society for education and ethical action and then turn to strategies for using the program in the local community to raise awareness of SDGs and encourage others to act sustainably. The goals are to provide small societies with an additional resource for programming and all societies with a toolkit for expanding community understanding of the critical issues facing the planet and its inhabitants.

      Healing the Disconnections: Home and Family in Our Natural and Constructed Environments SONATA

      Storäe Michele & Elyse Ambrose

      Oftentimes, “ecological amnesia” causes the ethical activist to forget our interconnectedness with the earth as well as one another. This workshop will excavate intentions of environmental justice work through the construction of an ethics that integrates intentionally, relationality, and collective actions. Making center the voices of black, indigenous, and Latinx communities (in New Mexico and across the US), we invite participants to discuss the disconnects that occur as a result of gentrification, resources disparity, and within our human-to-human relationships. Breaking down the dichotomy of an environment that is “out there” as opposed to “in here,” inclusive of all, we will create new language around home and family for a more healing ecological and environmental practice.

      Environmental Wisdom and Strategies from Indigenous Leaders REGAL

      Anne Klaeysen, Rick Chavolla, Valerie Siow, & Angelo Baca

      Bears Ears, an Indigenous sacred site and currently a National Monument in the Four Corners region (New Mexico/Colorado/Utah/Arizona) is under full attack by the Trump administration for the sole purpose of opening this sacred and environmentally fragile area to mining and other extractive industries. This workshop will include a panel of Indigenous leaders involved with this struggle who will share their experiences and strategies to protect this land. Co-facilitators Anne Klaeysen and Rick Chavolla will share how the New York Society for Ethical Culture and American Indian Community House have formed a partnership. Valerie Siow, the Director of the POV Laguna language project, and Angelo Baca of Bears Ears, Utah, longtime advocate for protection of Bears Ears land and environment, will add discussion on the relation between Indigenous language and protection of the land/environment. Valerie will specifically discuss this from the Laguna perspective.

      5:00pm-6:00pm: AEU Business Issues Discussion – Resolutions SONATA

      5:00pm-6:00pm: AEU Business Issues Discussion – Finance SERENADE

      6:00pm-7:00pm: Reception to meet AEU Board Members, Board Candidates, and Staff (cash bar) REGAL

      7:00pm-8:00pm Elliott-Black Award Dinner (cash bar) WURLITZER

      8:00pm-9:00pm Elliott-Black Award Ceremony for Faith Spotted Eagle REGAL

      Faith Spotted Eagle is an activist, PSTD counselor, and educator who belongs to the Brave Heart Society. She is a trained mediator/peacemaker and incorporates traditional peacemaking with western approaches of peacemaking to preserve the good medicine of the Dakota Culture for the future. As the Chair of the Ihanktonwan Treaty Committee and Brave Heart Society Grandmother, she helped bring forth the International Treaty to Protect the Sacred against the KXL Pipeline and the Tar Sands. Read her full bio here.

    • Sunday, June 10, 2018

      8:00am-9:00am: Colloquy w. Richard Koral EBONY

      9:15am-10:30am: Platform REGAL

      A Guide for Weaving Justice

      Curt Collier, Leader Emeritus and Director of Groundwork USA’s National Youth Programs

      The First People who settled the area now called New Mexico tell a story of Spider Woman who taught humans how to weave cloth, a practice still carried on by the Dine (Navajo) and Hopi to this day. The traditional loom required warping strings to hold the fibers tight and wefting material to provide the bulk of the cloth. In a similar way, environmental justice not only requires firm commitments to equity and fairness, but a similar commitment to interlacing the ecosystem with the beings who live there. When done correctly, patterns can emerge, and in fact, beauty can be a guide in determining whether we’re heading in the right direction.

      10:45am-12:15pm AEU Business Meeting (delegates materials) REGAL

      12:30pm-1:30pm: Sunday Farewell Lunch WURLITZER

      2:00pm-5:00pm: AEU Board Meeting (open to all) SONATA

  • Click on a speaker for headshot and bio.

    • Amy Halpern-Laff

      Amy Halpern-Laff is Director, Strategic Partnerships of Factory Farming Awareness Coalition (, a nonprofit that educates people on the devastating impacts of industrial agriculture—on the planet, social justice, public health, and animal cruelty. In addition to her work with FFAC, Amy is Co-Executive Director of Ethics in Education Network ( advocating for ethics-centered curricula that instills lifelong habits of rigorous and open-minded ethical inquiry. She also founded and leads Berkeley Coalition for Animals, educating elected officials and advocating for animal rights legislation. Amy earned her JD at Stanford Law School and practiced law and mediation in NY and CT. She pivoted in to education, nonprofit and grassroots campaign leadership, assuming executive and lay leadership roles. A longtime social justice activist and educator, Amy has focused on criminal justice reform, education equity and animal rights.

    • Anne Klaeysen

      Dr. Anne Klaeysen is an Ethical Culture Leader who serves the New York Society for Ethical Culture, Columbia University, and New York University. She also serves on the boards of The Encampment for Citizenship and Sunday Assembly NYC. Anne holds a Doctor of Ministry degree in pastoral counseling from Hebrew Union College and masters degrees in German from SUNY Albany and business administration from NYU. She also graduated from The Humanist Institute and previously was their co-dean.

    • Babs Mondschein

      Babs Mondschein is a transplant from California. She has a B.A. in Sociology, M.A. in Special Education and a variety of Teaching Certificates and certifications. Babs started the first New Mexico chapter of Americans United for Separation of Church and State a bit over a year ago and was elected President. AUSCS-NM has one mandate which is to ensure that the separation of religion and government, (as guaranteed by the First Amendment), be respected and upheld. All chapters are both non-partisan and religion-neutral. The chapter’s current thrust is on upcoming legislation for End of Life Options for the state of New Mexico, but not to the exclusion of other Church-State issues.

    • Bill & Jill Aul

      Bill & Jill Aul joined the Ethical Society of Mid Rivers in November 2005. Both have served terms on the Board of Directors, including terms as President and Treasurer. In addition, they have both served on the Sunday Programs Committee. They have been involved in numerous fundraisers, were Platform hosts, served on the Leader Advisory Board, and managed the A/V team. Jill and Bill both serve on AEU national committees, and Jill is the Secretary of the AEU Board of Directors. Jill is a retired teacher and Bill owns Aul Access, a gate operator business. Both are activists in the St. Louis metropolitan area’s LGBTQ+ community. They are the parents of two adult sons.

    • Carolyn A. Parker

      Dr. Carolyn A. Parker is an ethical humanist, come late to the community but long holding the beliefs and values that led her, finally, to the Ethical Society of Austin. She is an activist, with experience in advocacy at local, state, and national levels. Her education gave her a background in the liberal arts and social science, supporting her work in teaching, writing, and organizational management with an international perspective.

    • Christian Hayden

      Christian Hayden is a Community Educator with Women Against Abuse. Christian served three years as an AmeriCorps member. Following Christian’s time with AmeriCorps, he began work as a Community Liaison in both the Mantua and Southwest communities of Philadelphia. In 2015, Christian left for a year abroad in Ghana working with the Humanist Service Corps. While in Ghana he worked with a women’s rights organizations addressing issues around violence against women. Coupled with his experience, he has interests in art, hip hop, and sociology. Christian brings all of these elements together as he facilitates dialogue around safety in relationships with students. Christian earned a B.A in Urban Studies from the College of Wooster in Ohio. Christian finds grounding and guidance in contributing to and shaking up the Ethical Humanist community.

    • Cory Corwin

      Cory Corwin is an atheist activist and “non-clergy” community organizer. He grew up in Farmington, New Mexico, and recently started facilitating a social, networking, and support community of atheists, agnostics, scientists, and secular skeptics. He hopes to reach out to local religious minorities to address the majority religious crackdown on all minority groups in our area. While working to further his higher education, Cory also organized a social motorcycling group for non-religious people!

    • Curt Collier

      Curt Collier oversees Groundwork USA’s National Youth Programs. Working in collaboration with the National Park Service and the US Fish and Wildlife Service, Collier has created award-winning corps-styled programs in a number of national parks and refuges, including Yellowstone, Grand Teton, Shenandoah National Park, and Gateway National Recreation Area, as well as along the Appalachian National Scenic Trail. Curt is an Ethical Culture Leader who worked with the New York Society for Ethical Culture and Riverdale-Yonkers Society for Ethical Culture. Curt has a BA in Philosophy, an MS in Communication Disorders, and certificates in counseling from the Post Graduate Center for Mental Health. Prior to leading the above activities he taught at Texas Tech University, Texas A&M Kingsville, and most recently at Hofstra University.

    • Don Lacey

      Don Lacey is the American Atheists State Director for Arizona. In 2010, he helped start the Secular Coalition for Arizona—a group dedicated to giving the Secular Community a single voice to the Arizona State Legislature. He retired as a major from U. S. Air Force after 27 years of service where he worked as a research engineer and program manager. He worked and additional eight years for Raytheon Missile Systems in Tucson and finally retired completely in March 2008. He is now the organizer for the Tucson Atheists and the Skeptics of Tucson and a member of various “secular” organizations. For the last 4 years, he has been a program counselor for Camp Quest Arizona.

    • Elizabeth (Liz) Singer

      Elizabeth (Liz) Singer is a member of the New York Society and has served as President of

      the Board of Trustee & Chair of the Membership Committee since 2014. She is also member of the American Ethical Union Board of Trustees. Professionally Liz Singer is a Geriatric Care Manager and Certified Gerontologist. Her company EPS Geriatrics provides a broad portfolio of reactive and proactive support and coordination of services encompassing the needs of seniors and their families. She designs, develops, and orchestrates solutions to the problems of Aging. She also holds a certificate in Mental Health In Aging. Prior to EPS Geriatrics, Liz held positions at Federated Corporation, Associated Corporation, and Canasal USA. Liz earned her Fashion Design and Retailing degree from Stevens College, and later her certificate in GCM and Geriatric Mental Health.

    • Elyse Ambrose

      Elyse Ambrose is a healing activist, sexual ethicist, and word artist. Currently a Ph.D. Candidate at Drew University (Social Ethics, concentrating in Women’s & Gender Studies and African American Studies), Elyse’s desire for her scholarship to impact and be informed by real lives leads to her synergy of theory and practice. She is the Creative Organizer of phoeniXspark, which offers consulting, as well as workshops and retreats that center the experiences of queer and trans people of color (QTPoC) as participants co-create space for healing of their sexual and gender selves. Currently, Elyse serves as a Research Fellow at The Center on African American Religion, Sexual Politics, and Social Justice at Columbia University. She is a graduate of Howard University (B.B.A, 2007).

    • Emily Newman

      Emily Newman is the Education Assistant at the American Humanist Association Center for Education and Communications Coordinator of the American Ethical Union. She holds a Bachelor of Science in psychology with an additional major in creative writing as well as a Master of Arts in professional writing from Carnegie Mellon University. Emily grew at the Brooklyn Society for Ethical Culture and has been active with the Future of Ethical Societies, the National Ethical Service, and the International Humanist and Ethical Youth Organization. Over the years, she has assisted local non-profits and small businesses with social media, design, website development, and marketing. Her recent writing can be found on

    • Hugh Taft-Morales

      Hugh Taft-Morales is Leader of the Philadelphia Ethical Society and the Baltimore Ethical Society, and is President of the National Leaders Council of the American Ethical Union. Hugh taught philosophy and history for twenty-five years after which he transitioned into Ethical Culture Leadership. In April of 2009 he graduated from the Humanist Institute and was certified as an Ethical Culture Leader in 2010. He is on the Board of Peace Day Philly, and is a member of the clergy caucus with both Philadelphians Organized to Witness Empower and Rebuild (POWER) and Baltimoreans United in Leadership Development (BUILD). Hugh graduated from Yale and earned a Masters in Philosophy from University of Kent at Canterbury. He lives in Takoma Park, Maryland, with his wife, Maureen. They have three wonderful adult children—Sean, Maya, and Justin. Hugh’s hobbies include yoga, dancing, singing and playing guitar, and watching sports.

    • James Croft

      Dr. James Croft is Outreach Leader at the Ethical Society of St. Louis. He studied education at the Universities of Cambridge and Harvard, and completed his Doctorate at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. He is a graduate and former board member of The Humanist Institute. His writing can be found in The Humanist magazine and on Huffington Post. James was raised on Shakespeare, Sagan, and Star Trek, and is a proud, gay Humanist.

    • Joan Brown

      Joan Brown,osf is a Franciscan Sister based in Rochester, Minnesota. Originally from a farm in Kansas, where her family farms on a Centenarian Farm, her life has always revolved around love of and care for creation and social justice. She serves as the Executive Director of the New Mexico Interfaith Power and Light (NMIPL), one of 40 state affiliates of the national Interfaith Power and Light founded by Episcopal Priest Sally Bingham. She was selected in 2015 as a White House Champion of Change; participated in the UN Climate Change meeting in Copenhagen in December 2009 and at COP21 in Paris in December 2015 as an official observer with the Franciscan’s International NGO; and was part of a presentation for the State Department on “What Interfaith Communities are Doing to Address Climate Change in the US.” She presented on religious and ethical dimensions of water at the World Water Forum in Mexico City in 2006. She has written for various publications including Catholic Update, US Catholic, National Catholic Rural Life Magazine, The New Theology Review, and is a regular columnist for National Catholic Reporter’s Global Sisters Report. She also participated as one of the environmental voices of faith leaders in the documentary Renewal.

    • Judith D. Wallach

      Judith D. Wallach, PhD is a long-time member of the New York Society for Ethical Culture. Having graduated from the Ethical Culture Fieldston School, she later became an active member of her hometown (NY) Society. She has been president of the Society and chair of its Social Service Board, a member of the AEU Board and chair of its fund development committee. An honorary member of the ECFS school board, she has devoted herself to various organizations that help the homeless and been a founder of two progressive public charter schools based on ethics. By profession, she is a clinical psychologist and still practices, now on a part-time basis. Married to Bob Tapp, Professor Emeritus of the University of Minnesota and past Dean of The Humanist Institute, they share numerous children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren.

    • Kevin Bolling

      Kevin Bolling is the Executive Director of the Secular Student Alliance. Kevin brings with him 20 years of nonprofit leadership experience. His career has included over 10 years of student association management and on-campus program development from Los Angeles to Boston. For 10 years, Kevin served as the Executive Director of the California Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Foundation, a charitable trust serving the healthcare needs of the industries’ largely immigrant workforce. Most recently, Kevin served as the Director of Philanthropy at the Gay Men’s Chorus of Los Angeles, a major LGBTQ arts advocacy organization, whose youth outreach work has moved thousands of hearts and minds across the US towards embracing LGBTQ equality.

    • Kitty Richards

      Kitty Richards, MPH, MS is the Founder and Policy Director of Healthy Places Consulting, LLC, where she shapes national, state, and local policies by conducting assessments on the environmental and social conditions of underserved neighborhoods. She has testified on the need for baseline environmental monitoring and health surveillance before the New Mexico State Legislature, resulting in the creation of the New Mexico Border Health Office to help New Mexico-Mexico border residents suffering from a health crisis. Ms. Richards has authored numerous publications throughout her career, including: Looking Within: A Health Impact Assessment of Uranium Mining, and Our Common Agenda – New Mexico Place Matters Teams. Ms. Richards holds a Master’s degree in Public Health, a Master’s degree in Natural Resource Economics, and a Bachelor’s degree in Geography. Ms. Richards hikes, skies cross-country, and participates in Special Olympics sports with her husband and son.

    • Louise Jett

      Communicating is Louise Jett’s specialty. She is a photographer, journalist, social media marketer, graphic designer, web editor and faculty member. In short, she is a storyteller and an educator. Flexible and strategic, she approaches challenges with optimism and enthusiasm, in the hope of bringing truly original ideas to the table and breathing life into all the projects on which she works. As Social Media Manager at the Ethical Society of St. Louis, Louise collects and shares Ethical Society stories and news in order to spread awareness of their community. She is a Humanist who is truly inspired by people who are dedicated to empowering others. In her down time, she enjoys spending time with her husband, Luke, their 15-year-old son, Keenan, and their numerous pets, which includes two guinea pigs named Gertrude and Francis.

    • Randy Best

      Randy Best is the Leader (Humanist Minister) of the Northern Virginia Ethical Society in Vienna, Virginia. Born in St. Louis, he grew up attending the Ethical Society of St. Louis where is mother is still a member. Randy is a graduate of Grinnell College, Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, and The Humanist Institute. He is a certified Ethical Culture Leader, Mediator, and pastoral counselor. He currently divides his time between Northern Virginia and Durham, North Carolina, where his wife Sarah Howe is a ceramic artist. Sarah and Randy have four grown children who they homeschooled and two grandsons.

    • Randy Wall

      Randy Wall is President of the Humanist Society of New Mexico. He has been a member since 2001 and has served as a board member in various capacities since 2002. He is also the current editor of the HSNM newsletter. He has been employed with a local healthcare system for 28 years and counting.

    • Richard Koral

      Richard Koral is one of the Leaders at the New York Society for Ethical Culture and is the Leader of the Ethical Humanist Society of Long Island. He attended The Humanist Institute and holds a Doctor of Ministry in Interfaith Pastoral Counseling as well as a J.D. degree. Richard served as president of the American Ethical Union, the national federation of Ethical Societies, from 2012 to 2015. He is also currently a part-time counselor with the Scarsdale Family Counseling Service.

    • Richard Moore

      Richard Moore is a national leader in environmental justice. He serves as the Chair of the US Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) National Environmental Justice Advisory Council (NEJAC); he was the first elected Chair of the council in 1993 and has also served as a member. Concurrently, he is the Program Director for Los Jardines Institute in Albuquerque, New Mexico and national Co-Coordinator of the Environmental Justice & Health Alliance for Chemical Policy Reform, advocating for stronger, safer, and just chemical policies, and he is Co-Founder and Board Member of Just Transition Alliance and a Board Member of Coming Clean, Inc. Mr. Moore has served on numerous government and non-governmental committees and panels including Co-Chair of the National Council of Churches Eco-Justice Task Force, and Co-Chair of the Congressional Black Caucus National Environmental Policy Commission. He served as the Executive Director of Southwest Network for Environmental and Economic Justice (SNEEJ), in Albuquerque, New Mexico, from 1993 to 2010 after 12 years with the Southwest Organizing Project (SWOP) where he was the lead organizer and primary trainer of SWOP’s organizing model. Mr. Moore received Health Care Without Harm’s highest distinction the ‘Environmental Health Hero Award’, at the national CleanMed conference held in Dallas, TX in 2016. In 2015, he was inducted into the Civil Rights Hall of Fame Hall of Resistance in Selma, Alabama.

    • Rick Chavolla

      Rick Chavolla is currently an educational consultant to universities and serves as Board Chair of the AICH of NY and is on the Board for the NGO Committee of the UN on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. He also advises the Native American and Indigenous Student Group of NYU and the Native American Alumni Association of Yale, and works closely with other Native student organizations in the New York area.

    • Roy Speckhardt

      Roy Speckhardt is executive director of the American Humanist Association where he actively promotes the humanist perspective on progressive political issues. He is a frequent media commentator, having appeared on Good Morning America, CNN, Fox News, and NPR, among others. He also writes a regular column for The Huffington Post, and has given speeches at colleges, conferences, and local humanist groups across the country. Speckhardt serves on the advisory board of the Religious Freedom Center of the Newseum Institute and previously served The Humanist Institute board. He is a member of the Forbes Nonprofit Council. He previously served as deputy director of The Interfaith Alliance and worked for various other politically progressive nonprofits. Speckhardt holds an M.B.A. from George Mason University and B.A. in sociology from Mary Washington College. He currently lives in Washington, DC. He is the author of Creating Change Through Humanism.

    • Steven & Esther Abeyta

      Steven Abeyta and Esther Abeyta, members of Southwest Organizing Project (SWOP), have been community activists bettering the living conditions of those severely impacted by environmental injustice in Bernalillo County since 2008. They address air quality, land use, and road project issues affecting the quality of life of the people living in their community. They also volunteer at San Jose Catholic Church teaching adults about their faith and spirituality.

    • Storäe Michele

      Storäe Michele is a storäe-teller, spiritual warrior, and artlovermaker. As an Interdisciplinary M.Div. graduate of Union Theological Seminary, storäe infuses the arts into theological inquiries: exploring rituals and breathing life into sacred spaces for meaningful reflection through performance, movement and film. Using her artistic license, she intentionally writes and engages with voices using the language of poetry—honoring its epistemology of healing and transformation. storäe is committed to the sharing of these stories with women of color as subject, while unearthing the narratives of our ancestors. To learn more, please visit

    • Susan Gordon

      Susan Gordon joined the Multicultural Alliance for a Safe Environment (MASE) as their second coordinator in 2014. She has more than three decades of grassroots organizing experience with community groups impacted by the development of nuclear weapons and nuclear power. MASE is a diverse coalition of uranium-impacted communities and represents the various cultures and ethnicities of our region, including Laguna Pueblo, Acoma Pueblo, Navajo Nation, and Anglo ranching communities. By standing together as a coalition, we are able to present a united response to the uranium industry that works to divide us. We bring a long-term view of the land that includes cultural and spiritual understandings that guide our approach to protecting our lands, air and waters. The groups include: Laguna Acoma Coalition for a Safe Environment, Post ’71 Uranium Workers Committee, Bluewater Downstream Alliance, Eastern Navajo Diné Against Uranium Mining, and Red Water Pond Road Community Association.

  • Pre-Assembly “Bosque Restoration” Service Outing
    Thursday, June 7, 1:15pm-5:00pm with Hugh Taft-Morales and Ed Wallhagen

    Ed Wallhagen coordinates volunteers from the First Unitarian Church of Albuquerque who help with “Bosque Restoration.” The UU group adopted a forest site near the Rio Grande in Albuquerque that had been destroyed by a fire a few years ago. Volunteers work with the city to help cut back invasive trees, like the Siberian Elm, Russian Olive, and Salt Cedar that grow near the Rio Grande flats, and plant the native Cottonwood Trees. Should time permit, those interested can take a nature walk during our outing.

    Please contact Hugh Taft-Morales at to sign up so we can be sure to have enough cars for all who wish to go, up to 20 people. Meet in the Sheraton Albuquerque Uptown lobby at 1:15pm and we will travel to the site together, less than 30 minutes away. Ed will arrange with the city to get cutting tools, saws, and shears. Wear work clothes, a hat, sunscreen, and bring a water bottle! We’ll plan to be back at the hotel no later than 5pm.

    If you want to meet as at the site, there will be parking inside the park at the end of Campbell Road (a couple of blocks from the Rio Grande Boulevard) at the intersection of Alejandro Lane. The nearest street address is 2878 Campbell Rd. NW, 87104. Find the location on Google Map at .

  • Exhibit Tables are $75 for a full table and $40 for a half ­table per day. This includes two chairs and a table cloth. Table reservation and payment must be received by June 1, 2018. Exhibitors are welcome to join free programs and can pay for workshops and/or meals before or during Assembly. Please email Law’nence Miller at

    Media members interested in reporting on Assembly can contact Law’nence Miller at or call the AEU office at 212-873-6500.

  • Nature Parks and Gardens
    Albuquerque Biological Park & ABQ BioPark Botanic Garden
    Petroglyph National Monument
    Sandia Peak Tramway

    Albuquerque Museum of Art and History
    American International Rattlesnake Museum
    Anderson-Abruzzo Albuquerque International Balloon Museum
    Indian Pueblo Cultural Center
    National Museum of Nuclear Science & History
    New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science

    Old Town Albuquerque
    Albuquerque Film & Music Experience, June 4-10
    Albuquerque PrideFest, June 9
    Heights Summerfest, June 9
    Festival Flamenco Internacional de Alburquerque, June 9-10

    Buca di Beppo Alburquerque
    The Cheesecake Factory
    Fork & Fig
    The Melting Pot
    Rock & Brews

  • More questions will be added. If you still have questions unanswered or any special needs, please contact Law’nence “L” Miller, Director of Administration ( or Larissa Perez, Administrative Assistant ( Tel: 212-873-6500. Fax: 212-624-0203.

    • What is the AEU Assembly about?

      The American Ethical Union organizes national Assemblies to learn, connect, and share about growing a more caring and humane world. Each Assembly includes a social justice theme, workshops, business meetings, a keynote program, Sunday Platform, receptions, and an ethical action service project. All are welcome.

    • When is the AEU Assembly?

      The 103rd AEU Assembly will take place from June 7-10, 2018. See the Schedule tab for more details.

    • How do I register for the conference? What is return policy?

      Click here for our easy online registration. Early bird discounts end May 7, 2018. If meals are sold out we will start a waitlist.

      Refund Policy: A 25% administrative fee will be charged for cancellation before May 4, 2018. After that date, the cancellation fee will be 50% on all full and partial packages. (Except for documented medical emergencies).

    • What is the Assembly hashtag?

      The official hashtag for the AEU Assembly is #ethicalseeds2018 and you can also tag @EthicalUnion. We will be posting regularly on Facebook and Twitter before and during the conference. Be sure to follow us for updates!

      You are welcome to use your devices to post photos throughout Assembly; however, please be respectful and do your best to not be disruptive to the speaker(s) or those around you. We also request that all devices be silenced/on vibrate during any event.

    • Which airport should I fly into?

      Albuquerque International Sunport is less than 10 miles away from hotel and is the best choice.

    • When I arrive at the hotel, how do I check-in for the conference?

      Once you enter the hotel, look for signs or ask for directions to find our registration table where you will get your name badge and more (we’ll also have merchandise for sale). AEU staff and volunteers will be available throughout the conference if you need assistance. Please wear your name badge at all times during the conference. It serves as your pass to access conference events.

    • What if I want to purchase a workshop or meal on site?

      We will try to accommodate late registrants as best we can.

    • How can I donate to help someone else attend?

      Thank you for your generosity. You can click here to donate online, check “I would like to designate this donation to a specific fund,” and select Voices at the Table in Designated Fund dropdown menu. Or make a check out to the American Ethical Union and write “Voices at the Table Fund” in the memo.