January 21, 2016
As you might recall, last year I announced that I would be stepping down as president and CEO of the Center for Inquiry, to make way for new leadership in 2016. I said then that I wanted to give the CFI board of directors ample time to find a highly qualified new chief executive. Consistent with my hopes and expectations, the board has found a talented, experienced leader for CFI.
What I could not have expected, but I am delighted to share with you now, is that in finding a wonderful new CEO, CFI has also made an unprecedented move to become stronger and more effective than ever.
I am delighted to tell you today that the Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science has agreed to merge with the Center for Inquiry and that their president and CEO, Robyn Blumner, will be the new CEO of the combined organizations, which will work under the name of the Center for Inquiry.
CFI and RDFRS both seek to make the world a better place for all, religious and nonreligious alike, by untangling faith and pseudoscience from government, promoting critical thinking and skepticism, and advocating for science and reason in all areas of public life. Each organization brings unique strengths to the table, and given the similarity in their missions, these two organizations are an excellent match.
This is a momentous event not only for our organization, but for the entire secular and skeptic movement. This new Center for Inquiry is now the largest freethought organization in the United States, and the combined talents, resources, and passion of CFI and RDFRS will allow the Center for Inquiry to have a greater impact than ever. We begin working together as one unified organization beginning right now.
And I can’t wait for you to get to know Robyn Blumner. An extremely accomplished and deeply respected lawyer, activist, journalist, and nonprofit executive, Robyn has lifted RDFRS to new heights. There is no one better at this time to lead the Center for Inquiry. She will formally become CFI’s CEO on Monday, January 25.
As for Richard Dawkins himself, CFI is thrilled to be associated with one of the preeminent public intellectuals of our time, and we’re all eager to take full advantage of his wisdom, intelligence, and eloquence as perhaps the world’s foremost communicator of science and secularism.
For me, I will retain the title of president of CFI for a brief period during the transition. I will do all I can to ensure that this new CFI gets off to a smooth and successful start.
Surely you will have a lot of questions, and we’ll do our best to answer them. For now, you can get more information about this merger at our F.A.Q. here.
And please join me in warmly welcoming Robyn Blumner, Richard Dawkins, and all at RDFRS to the Center for Inquiry.
# # #
The Center for Inquiry (CFI) is a nonprofit educational, advocacy, and research organization headquartered in Amherst, New York, with executive offices in Washington, D.C. It is also home to both the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry and the Council for Secular Humanism. The mission of CFI is to foster a secular society based on science, reason, freedom of inquiry, and humanist values. CFI‘s web address is https://centerforinquiry.org.