LogiCal-LA 2019 brings many exciting speakers and panelists to the Los Angeles area for an inspiring weekend of critical thinking and skepticism, science education and nightly entertainment. More information about our speakers will be coming soon.
LogiCal-LA 2019 Speakers:
Hector A. Garcia, Psy.D., is the author of the groundbreaking books Alpha God: The Psychology of Religious Violence and Oppression, and Sex, Power, and Partisanship: How Evolutionary Science Makes Sense of Our Political Divide, published this February by Prometheus Books. He is an assistant professor in the department of psychiatry at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, and a clinical psychologist specializing in the treatment of posttraumatic stress disorder in combat veterans. He has published extensively on evolutionary psychology, PTSD, and the interplay between war and masculine identity
Jemma Lorenat is an assistant professor of mathematics at Pitzer College. Her work in the history of mathematics focuses on geometry, visualization and mediums of communication in the nineteenth century.
Dr. John Eigenauer is a professor of Philosophy and Computer Science at Taft College in Taft, California. He holds a master’s degree in English, a master’s degree in Humanities, and a doctoral degree in Interdisciplinary Studies from Syracuse University. Dr. Eigenauer has taught Philosophy, English, Mathematics, Computer Science, Physics, and Spanish. He currently teaches Philosophy and Critical Thinking. Before joining Taft College, Dr. Eigenauer worked for Microsoft as a Senior Technology Specialist and at NASA Lewis Research Center as a Systems Analyst. He is a recipient of NISOD’s Excellence Award and has presented internationally on the topic of critical thinking.
Brooke Weitzman spent a few years working at a pro bono Orange County firm, Public Law Center, before deciding to go out on her own.
The Elder Law and Disability Rights firm is always embroiled in a number of homelessness-related cases because seniors and the disabled usually make up a significant portion of that population. Most notably, the firm filed a federal lawsuit in January with the intent of preventing officials from clearing an encampment at the Santa Ana River.
The ELDR Center is comprised of two full-time lawyers—Weitzman and co-founder William Wise, of Los Angeles. The duo moved into a small office in Santa Ana in April 2017 after incorporating in late 2016. Before, they’d been working out of a coffee shop.
Thomas Westbrook, a public speaker, and science-advocate is the founder of Holy Koolaid LLC, an anti-cult media production company that makes animated videos promoting scientific skepticism and critical thinking. Starting just three years ago with no platform, zero connections, and no money, his videos have garnered over 70,000 subscribers and 7 million views. He’s a co-host of the Here and How podcast which explores big ideas to promote scientific progress. He’s also on the board of the Faithless Forum Conference – bringing together content creators who contend that our nation’s public policies should be based on science, not dogma. Thomas has gone after everything from psychics and alternative medicine to flat-earthers and young-earth creationists, and he’s just getting started.
Glenton Jelbert is the author of Evidence Considered: A Response to Evidence for God. He was born in the United Kingdom and grew up in Zimbabwe and South Africa. He currently lives with his wife and three children in Southern California. He has undergraduate degrees in mathematics and a Ph.D. in physics from the University of Cambridge. He has lived, worked, and attended church all over the world including Zimbabwe, South Africa, Tanzania, the United Kingdom, Singapore, and California. He was a Christian for more than three decades, changing his mind when he examined the evidence that supported his reasons for belief and found it wanting.
Dr. Betty Lacy, a psychiatrist, will be presenting a talk on contemporary developments in brain health. She will explore the relationship between genetic and epigenetic phenomena—previously referred to as nature verse nurture – in maintaining a healthy brain and creating cognitive resiliency.
Initially educated as a nurse, Dr. Lacy went on to obtain her medical degree and specialize in psychiatry. She was drawn to delve into genetic testing and later discovered, through her passionate research, that there were many things to do to prevent dementia and cognitive decline.
Dr. Branwen Williams’s research develops the techniques that we use to generate records of our past ocean and climate variability and uses these records to understand mechanisms driving environmental changes. She got her B.Sc. in Marine and Freshwater Biology at the University of Guelph. She then got her M.Sc. in Biology at GEOTOP with the Université du Québec à Montréal. She then went to complete at her Ph.D. in Geological Science in the School of Earth Sciences at the Ohio State University. From there, she did a postdoctoral research fellowship in the Department of Chemical & Physical Sciences at the University of Toronto Mississauga. She is now an Associate Professor of Environmental Sciences in the W.M. Keck Science Department, a science department that is shared among three colleges of the Claremont Colleges: Claremont McKenna College, Pitzer College, and Scripps College.
Phil Zuckerman is a professor of sociology and secular studies at Pitzer College in Claremont, California. He specializes in the sociology of secularity. He is the author of several books, including Society Without God (2008) for which he won ForeWord Magazine’s silver book of the year award, and Faith No More (2011).
Additional speakers will be listed as we compile their bios.
Our MC: Margaret Downey
Margaret Downey founded the Freethought Society (FS) and the Anti-Discrimination Support Network (ADSN) in 1993. In 1994 Margaret founded the Thomas Paine Memorial Committee.
She is a past board member of the American Humanist Association, The Humanist Institute, and the Thomas Paine National Historical Association. She is a current board member of the Freedom From Religion Foundation, Scouting For All and is a member of the Advisory Board Member of the Robert Green Ingersoll Museum. In the year 2002, she became the first “Secular Humanist Celebrant” in Pennsylvania certified by the Center for Inquiry.
Margaret created the Richard Dawkins Award in 2003. Margaret served as president of the Atheist Alliance International for two years. She has been a guest on National Public Radio’s Talk of the Nation and Radio Times. Television appearances include features on local news stations as well as ABC’s Nightline, PBS and Fox News.
Our past speakers:
Professor Lawrence M. Krauss, the internationally known theoretical physicist and cosmologist, will give the keynote address at LogiCal-LA 2018 on Sunday afternoon.
Yvette D’Entremont, (confirmation pending), Science blogger SciBabe, scientist, writer, public speaker
Diane Goldstein, Lt. Commander (Ret.), Board Secretary at LEAP
Pascal Gagneux, Ph.D., UC San Diego School of Medicine
Abby Hafer, doctorate in zoology, professor at Curry College, speaker, writer, and humanist
Harriet Hall, Retired Air Force flight surgeon and family physician, “The SkepDoc”
Sheldon W. Helms, professor of psychology, Ohlone College, ShelShocked science, and skepticism podcast
Cheryl Hollinger, biology teacher, TIES (Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science)
Julien Musolino, cognitive scientist, author, and professor at Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ
Bob Novella, co-founder and host of The Skeptics Guide to the Universe podcast
Alex J. O’Connor, owner of the Cosmic Skeptic blog and YouTube channel
Brian Palermo, actor, author, and science communication advocate
Jamy Ian Swiss, skeptic, magician, comedian, artist: The Honest Liar
John Wathey, computational biologist and author
Karen Yuen, Science Data Applications Lead, NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory
Seth Andrews is an author and speaker on the subject of atheism. He is the creator and host of The Thinking Atheist online community, podcast, and YouTube channel, and the author of the self-published books Deconverted and Sacred Cows.
Dan Barker is an American atheist activist who served as an evangelical Christian preacher and musician for 19 years but left Christianity in 1984. He and his wife Annie Laurie Gaylor are the current co-presidents of the Freedom From Religion Foundation.
Sean Carroll is a theoretical physicist specializing in quantum mechanics, gravity, and cosmology.
Brian Dunning is an American writer and producer who focuses on science and skepticism.He has hosted a weekly podcast, Skeptoid, since 2006, and he is an author of a series of books on the subject of scientific skepticism, some of which are based on the podcast.
Jerry Coyne is an American biologist known for his work on speciation and his commentary on intelligent design. A prolific scientist and author, he has published dozens of papers elucidating the theory of evolution.
Harriet Hall is a U.S. retired family physician, former U.S. Air Force flight surgeon and skeptic who writes about alternative medicine and quackery for Skeptic and Skeptical Inquirer.
Elizabeth Loftus is an American cognitive psychologist and expert on human memory. She has conducted extensive research on the malleability of human memory. Loftus is best known for her ground-breaking work on the misinformation effect and eyewitness memory,
Angie Mattke is a Pediatrician at Mayo Clinic Children’s Center.
Joe Nickell is an American prominent skeptic and investigator of the paranormal. He is a Senior Research Fellow for the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry (CSI) and writes regularly for their journal, the Skeptical Inquirer.
Don Prothero is an American geologist, paleontologist, and author who specializes in mammalian paleontology
Eugenie Scott is an American physical anthropologist, a former university professor and educator who has been active in opposing the teaching of young Earth creationism and intelligent design in schools.
Gad Saad is a Lebanese-Canadian evolutionary behavioural scientist at the John Molson School of Business (Concordia University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada) who is known for applying evolutionary psychology to marketing and consumer behaviour.