Here at FIRE, we’ve been trying to put ourselves out of business since our founding in 1999. We’d love nothing more than to close up our offices and declare that individual rights— including freedom of expression, academic freedom, due process, and rights of conscience—are no longer under threat at our nation’s colleges. Until that day comes, we celebrate the silver lining: that our employees are some of the most passionate, hard-working, and intellectually diverse people dedicated to helping improve the lives of students and faculty on America’s campuses. In the coming days, we’ll be introducing you to a big group of freshly-minted FIRE staffers ready to do just that.
First up is our new Communications Manager, Daniel Burnett.
Daniel comes to FIRE from a media relations post at a global development non-profit. He was also the director of communications at the American Council of Trustees and Alumni, where he defended strong liberal arts curricula and advocated for increased transparency and accountability on campus.
“I came to FIRE because protecting minority and dissenting viewpoints is essential for societal progress,” Daniel said. “Without robust debate and discussion, norms wouldn’t be challenged and minds wouldn’t change.”
His advice for college students who want to advocate for a cause or are simply looking to broaden their own horizons?
“Students should challenge their own viewpoints and engage with people who hold other opinions, even controversial, unpopular, and stinging ones,” he said. “If we can’t have free speech on college campuses, where can we have it?”
“I’m excited to work with reporters to increase the scope of FIRE’s work and to explore opportunities to get FIRE’s message to new audiences,” he said.
Daniel holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Georgia, and counts studying American history, brunching, playing kickball, and all things Dolly Parton among his favorite pastimes.
We’re happy to have him here at FIRE and hope you’ll join us in welcoming him.
Check back in here this week and next as we introduce you to more great new FIRE team members.