More than 450 people attended the 70th Anniversary Conference of the American Humanist Association (AHA), including the leadership of the International Humanist and Ethical Union (IHEU). The conference took place from April 7 through 10, 2011, in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
IHEU speakers at the conference included: president Sonja Eggerickx, vice presidents Andrew Copson, Mel Lipman and Roar Johnson, and international representative Matt Cherry. There was a great deal of enthusiasm for the work of IHEU and several groups expressed interest in joining IHEU, including new groups in the Philippines and Colombia.
Sonja Eggerick’s conference presentation on IHEU and its current activities and goals is available here: http://www.iheu.org/president-explains-international-humanist-work
The AHA conference featured awards to many distinguished Humanists. Writer and professor of philosophy Rebecca Goldstein was named the 2011 Humanist of the Year. Goldstein, a recipient of the Montague Prize for Excellence in Philosophy, a Guggenheim Fellowship, and a MacArthur “Genius” Award, was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2005. She has written many books, ranging from novels to philosophical biographies, including, Betraying Spinoza: The Renegade Jew Who Gave Us Modernity, and most recently, Thirty-Six Arguments for the Existence of God: A Work of Fiction.
Several other distinguished Humanists also received awards. Steve Wozniak, co-founder of Apple Computers, received the Isaac Asimov Science Award. Judy Norsigan, executive director and founder of the Boston Women’s Health Book Collective, received the Humanist Heroine Award. Candace Gingrich-Jones, the Youth and Campus Outreach Associate Director at the Human Rights Campaign, was given the LGBT Humanist Pride Award. And Bart Ehrman, Distinguished Professor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, will be receiving the Religious Liberty Award.