“We need to research, educate, listen to, and understand each other. It is hard to imagine social progress anywhere that wasn’t dependent on freedom of speech.”

Erwin Chemerinsky, Dean of UC Berkeley School of Law


The National Center for Free Speech and Civic Engagement at the University of California is chaired by UC President Drake and governed by two advisory boards: a National Advisory Board and an Academic Advisory Board.

Michael V. Drake

President, University of California

National Advisory Board Co-chairs

Erwin Chemerinsky

Erwin Chemerinsky

Dean, University of California, Berkeley School of Law

Howard Gillman

Chancellor, University of California, Irvine

Executive Director

Michelle N. Deutchman

Executive Director m.deutchman@uci.edu

Center Staff

Brenda Pitcher

Executive Assistant bpitcher@uci.edu

Melanie Ziment

Program Associate mziment@uci.edu

Alex Edgar

Student Intern alexedgar25@berkeley.edu

National Advisory Board

The National Advisory Board is responsible for providing guidance to the Center’s Executive Director and UC senior officials overseeing the work of the Center, to ensure that it is advancing its mission with high quality and high impact programming and activities. It is co-chaired by UC Berkeley Law Dean Erwin Chemerinsky and UC Irvine Chancellor Howard Gillman.

Margo Bennett

Retired Chief of Police, University of California Police Department, Berkeley

Alex Edgar

Undergraduate Student, Political Science, UC Berkeley

Alexis Atsilvsgi Zaragoza

Masters of Public Policy Candidate, UC Berkeley

Jessica Herrera-Flanigan

Partner, Monument Advocacy

Hannah-Beth Jackson

Founder and CEO, Hannah-Beth Jackson & Associates; Former California State Senator

Tamara Keith

Tamara Keith

White House Correspondent, NPR

Anne Kornblut

Director, New Initiatives for News Partnerships, Facebook

Renee Chapman Navarro, Pharm D, MD

Vice Chancellor and Chief Diversity and Outreach Officer, Professor of Anesthesiology and Perioperative Care, University of California, San Francisco

Geoffrey R. Stone

Geoffrey R. Stone

Professor, University of Chicago Law School

Nancy Thomas

Senior Advisor to the President for Democracy Initiatives and Executive Director of IDHE at AAC&U

Mark G. Yudof

President Emeritus, University of California

Academic Advisory Board

The Academic Advisory Board includes professors representing a variety of disciplines across all ten UC campuses. They will assist in the creation of the Center’s project priorities and future selection of fellows. Members will serve as liaisons between their university and the fellow that is in residence for one week on their campus.

Vikram D. Amar

UC Davis - Professor of Law

Elizabeth Beaumont

UC Santa Cruz - Associate Professor of Politics and Legal Studies

Jennifer A. González

UC Santa Cruz - Professor of the History of Art and Visual Culture

Richard L. Hasen

UCLA School of Law - Professor of Law

Steven W. Hetts, MD, FACR

UC San Francisco - Chair UCSF Academic Senate and Professor in Residence of Radiology, Biomedical Imaging, and Neurological Surgery

Anne Myers Kelley

UC Merced - Professor of Chemistry & Biochemistry

Clarissa C. Kripke, MD, FAAFP

UC San Francisc - HS Clinical Professor of Family & Community Medicine

Susanne Lohmann

UCLA - Professor of Political Science and Public Policy and Director of the Jacob Marschak Interdisciplinary Colloquium on Mathematics in the Behavioral Sciences

Michael Mascuch

UC Berkeley - Associate Professor; Chair, Department of Rhetoric

Parya Saberi

UC San Francisco - Associate Professor in Residence

Abigail Thompson

UC Davis - Distinguished Professor of Mathematics

Isabel Trevino

UC San Diego - Associate Professor, Department of Economics

Academic Advisory Board Emeriti

Farrell Ackerman

UC San Diego - Professor of Linguistics and Director of the Human Developmental Sciences Program

Ahmad Atif Ahmad

UC Santa Barbara - Professor, Religious Studies; Chair of the Council on Faculty Welfare, Academic Freedom, and Awards

Simone E. Chambers

UC Irvine - Professor, Political Science

Suneil K. Koliwad

UC San Francisco - Associate Professor, Medicine, Diabetes Center; Gerold Grodsky, PhD/JAB Chair in Diabetes Research

Jeffrey Kopstein

UC Irvine - Professor of Political Science

Dana Nelkin

UC San Diego - Professor, Philosophy

Constance Penley

UC Santa Barbara - Professor of Film & Media Studies

Mary Beth Pudup

UC Santa Cruz - Director and Associate Professor, Community Studies Program

John Villasenor

UCLA - Professor, Electrical Engineering, Law, Public Policy & Management

Eugene Volokh

UCLA - Gary T. Schwartz Distinguished Professor of Law