Board & Advisory Committee

Science Debate is a 501(c)(3) organization cofounded and run by volunteer citizens from a variety of walks of life who share the common vision of Thomas Jefferson that "Wherever the people are well-informed, they can be trusted with their own government." In an age when science influences every aspect of life and lies at the heart of many of our thorniest policy challenges, we believe that candidates for office should be debating and discussing these issues, just like they debate and discuss economics, foreign policy, and even faith. Science Debate is dedicated to elevating science and engineering questions in our national civic dialogue.

ScienceDebate is made possible with generous support from individuals and these organizations

Board of Directors


Matthew Chapman*, President

Sheril Kirshenbaum*, Executive Director

Nancy Holt, Operations Director

Ryan Johnson, Fredrikson & Byron

Lawrence Krauss*, Professor of Earth and Space Exploration and Physics, Arizona State University, Chair of the ScienceDebate scientific advisory board

Michael Halpern, Program Manager for Scientific Integrity, Union of Concerned Scientists


Additional Founding Members

Shawn Otto (past Chair & CEO), science writer, science advocate, novelist, speaker, screenwriter, producer, author of The War on Science

Austin Dacey, contributing editor, The Skeptical Inquirer magazine

Chris Mooney, Science Journalist, The Washington Post


Advisory Committee

Norm Augustine, former CEO of Lockheed Martin; former Undersecretary of the Army

Arne Carlson, former Republican Governor of Minnesota; former chairman of American Express Funds board

Darlene Cavalier,

Calvin DeWitt, President, Academy of Evangelical Scientists and Ethicists

Vern Ehlers (co-chair), Former Republican congressman from Michigan

Ira Flatow, Producer and Host of Science Friday on NPR's Talk of the Nation

Kathy Goodin, Deputy Director, Science Division and Director, Marine Program, NatureServe

David Guston, Co-Director of the Consortium for Science, Policy and Outcomes at Arizona State University

Rush Holt, CEO, American Association for the Advancement of Science; Executive Publisher, Science magazine; Former Democratic congressman from New Jersey

Melinda Hough, Health Research Policy Adviser, Science Debate, Inc

James Jensen, Director of Congressional and Government Affairs, The National Academies

Angie McAllister, SVP Pearson Higher Education

James McCarthy, Past Chairman, AAAS; board member, Union of Concerned Scientists; Professor of Oceanography, Harvard University

Deborah Wince-Smith, President, Council on Competitiveness


Numerous other individual and organizational supporters from among our signers pitch in on various projects from time to time. Science Debate is a collaborative conversation dedicated to improving American civic life.


Media Partner

Scientific American


Organizational cosponsors

The U.S. National Academies

The American Association for the Advancement of Science

The Council on Competitiveness