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Announcing FIRE’s 20th Anniversary Gala with keynote speaker Salman Rushdie

Pop quiz! What organization is celebrating a monumental 20 years of fighting for free speech, due process, and academic freedom on America’s college campuses?  

If you guessed FIRE, you’re right!

This year marks FIRE’s 20th anniversary, and we are celebrating this major occasion with a big bash on Oct. 24, 2019, in New York City.  So mark your calendars now!

The gala at the Mandarin Oriental hotel will bring together our long-time supporters, new friends, and dedicated staff for an unforgettable celebration, and give us an opportunity to look back on some of our most infamous cases and hard-fought victories. We hope you can be there with us for this special night.

We are very proud to announce that Salman Rushdie will deliver the keynote address. Rushdie authored the famously controversial novel “The Satanic Verses,” which sparked worldwide protests and book bans, and ultimately resulted in a fatwa calling for the death of both Rushdie and his publishers that remains in place today.

Comedian, motivational speaker, and FIRE Advisory Council member Karith Foster will grace us as the emcee of evening, and more special guests will be announced as the event date approaches.

We have so much to reflect on from these past 20 years and even more to look forward to as we continue our fight for fundamental rights. We want the people who have made our work possible, the readers of this very site, to be there with us as we celebrate.

Sponsorship and registration information will be available this summer, but in the meantime, please save the date and check here for upcoming details! Email any questions to

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