Guest Speakers

Jeffrey A. Tucker
Jeffrey A. Tucker

Jeffrey A. Tucker

Jeffrey Tucker is Director of Content for the Foundation for Economic Education. He is founder of Liberty.me, Distinguished Honorary Member of Mises Brazil, economics adviser to FreeSociety.com, research fellow at the Acton Institute, policy adviser of the Heartland Institute, founder of the CryptoCurrency Conference, member of the editorial board of the Molinari Review, an advisor to the blockchain application builder Factom, and author of five books.

His most recent book titled Right-Wing Collectivism: The Other Threat to Liberty, is prefaced by Deirdre McCloskey (FEE 2017). He has also written 150 introductions to books and many thousands of articles appearing in the scholarly and popular press and spoke previously in Australia at the 2013 Mises Conference!

Professor Ian Plimer
Professor Ian Plimer

Professor Ian Plimer

Ian Plimer is Emeritus Professor at The University of Melbourne where he was Professor and Head (1991-2005). He was Professor and Head of Geology (University of Newcastle 1985-1991), DFG Professor at Ludwig Maximilians Universität (Munich, 1991) and Professor of Mining Geology (University of Adelaide 2005-2012). Professor Plimer has published more than 130 scientific papers, edited the five-volume Encyclopedia of Geology.

He is author of eleven books for the general public, the best known of which are Telling lies for God (1994), Heaven and Earth (2009), How to get expelled from school (2011) and Not for Greens (2013). His latest book, Climate delusion and the great electricity rip-off was released in late 2017. He has won numerous national and international awards for his contributions to science and the mining industry.

He currently serves as an independent non-executive director on the boards of exploration and mining companies. He states he is not a climate skeptic and uses data to show that climate has always changed and changes measured today are within variability and we are delighted he shall be joining us!

Nyunggai Warren S Mundine AO
Nyunggai Warren S Mundine AO

Nyunggai Warren S Mundine AO

Warren is a highly respected and influential businessman, political strategist and advocate for empowering the First Nations of Australia to build businesses and sustainable economies. His life and career have been shaped by a personal commitment to community and economic development and he has nearly 40 years’ experience working in the public, private and community sectors.

His life and career have been shaped by a personal commitment to community and economic development and he has nearly 40 years’ experience working in the public, private and community sectors. Warren has received recognition for his contribution and commitment to Australia. In 2016 he was made an Officer of the Order of Australia. He has Honorary Life Membership of the NSW Local Government Aboriginal Network, was awarded the Centenary Medal for services to the community and local government and received the Bennelong Medal for Leadership in Indigenous Affairs. In 2012 he was made an Alan McGregor Fellow of the Centre for Independent Studies. In 2009 Warren was awarded a Doctor of the University (honoris causa) from Southern Cross University for services to the community, business and local government.

Dr Tom G. Palmer

Dr Palmer is the executive vice president for international programs at Atlas Network and is responsible for establishing operating programs in 14 languages and managing programs for a worldwide network of think tanks.

On Nov. 10, 2016, Dr. Tom G. Palmer was named the George M. Yeager Chair for Advancing Liberty at Atlas Network. He is also a senior fellow at Cato Institute and director of Cato University. Before joining Cato, he was an H. B. Earhart Fellow at Hertford College, Oxford University, and a vice president of the Institute for Humane Studies at George Mason University.

He frequently lectures in North America, Europe, Eurasia, Africa, Latin America, India, China and throughout Asia, as well as the Middle East on political science, public choice, civil society, and the moral, legal, and historical foundations of individual rights.

He has published reviews and articles on politics and morality in scholarly journals such as the Harvard Journal of Law and Public Policy, Ethics, Critical Review, and Constitutional Political Economy, as well as in publications such as Slate, the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, Die Welt, Caixing, Al Hayat, the Washington Post, and The Spectator of London. He is the author of Realizing Freedom: Libertarian Theory, History, and Practice (expanded edition 2014), and the editor of The Morality of Capitalism (2011), After the Welfare State (2012), Why Liberty (2013), Peace, Love & Liberty (2014), and Self-Control or State Control? You Decide (2016).

Palmer received his B.A. in liberal arts from St. Johns College in Annapolis, Maryland, his M.A. in philosophy from The Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C., and his doctorate in politics from Oxford University.

Bettina Arndt
Bettina Arndt

Bettina Arndt

Bettina Arndt was a pioneer in being one of Australia's first sex therapists and is now a national icon due to her commentary.

As an editor of Forum magazine, Bettina spent her early career talking about sex through the media and teaching doctors and other professionals across the country.

By the 1980s she'd had enough of a good thing. She gave up sex -professionally speaking - and moved onto writing for newspapers and magazines about broader social issues. As a respected social commentator she was invited onto government advisory committees covering issues from childcare and ageing to family law and child support, often to advocate for men. She believes there are many aspects of men’s personal lives where they don’t get a fair deal.

She returned briefly to talking about sex after publishing her book, The Sex Diaries, which became an international best-seller. She followed that up with a project on why sex means so much to men, leading to her most recent book, What Men Want. Bettina still appears frequently in the print media, radio and television and is now making YouTube videos, campaigning to end the demonisation of men.

Ilya Shapiro

Shapiro is the co-author of Religious Liberties for Corporations, Hobby Lobby, the Affordable Care Act, and the Constitution (2014). He has contributed to a variety of academic, popular, and professional publications, including the Wall Street Journal, Harvard Journal of Law & Public Policy, Los Angeles Times, USA Today, Weekly Standard, New York Times Online, and National Review Online.

He also regularly provides commentary for various media outlets, including CNN, Fox News, ABC, CBS, NBC, Univision and Telemundo, the Colbert Report, and NPR.

Shapiro has testified before Congress and state legislatures and, as coordinator of Cato’s amicus brief program, filed more than 200 “friend of the court” briefs in the Supreme Court, including one The Green Bag selected for its “Exemplary Legal Writing” collection. He lectures regularly on behalf of the Federalist Society, is a member of the Legal Studies Institute’s board of visitors at The Fund for American Studies, was an inaugural Washington Fellow at the National Review Institute and a Lincoln Fellow at the Claremont Institute, and has been an adjunct professor at the George Washington University Law School. In 2015 National Law Journal named him to its list of 40 “rising stars” in the legal community.

Before entering private practice, Shapiro clerked for Judge E. Grady Jolly of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. He holds an AB from Princeton University, an MSc from the London School of Economics, and a JD from the University of Chicago Law School (where he became a Tony Patiño Fellow).

Senator Amanda Stoker

Senator Stoker is a hero an inspiration to many of us. She is a Brisbane-based barrister practising in public law and commercial litigation. She has an interest and expertise in statutory interpretation, constitutional law and administrative law and is also a sessional academic for the Central Queensland University law school.

Amanda has been involved in centre-right politics since 2001 and while may not be a classical liberal on all issue, she is economically liberal and socially conservative, and committed to small government and freedom of speech.

Amanda is the Liberal National Party of Queensland’s honorary legal adviser, and a member of its State Executive and President’s Committee. She is a trustee of the Enid Dowling Foundation, which provides bursaries to young LNP members to develop their professional, political and leadership capabilities. She is also a director of the Australian Institute for Progress and is a spectacularly brilliant warrior for what we believe.

Tom Switzer
Tom Switzer

Tom Switzer

Tom is the Executive Director at the Centre for Independent Studies, and one of Australia's leading foreign policy commentators. He is widely quoted around the world and across the political spectrum for his nuanced and thoughtful analysis and provides a conservative critique against the neo-conservative position, and has argued eloquently and consistently against western intervention in the never-ending middle east conflicts.

After earning an honours degree in history and a masters in international relations, Tom has pursued a career in journalism, politics and academia. He is a former senior fellow at the University of Sydney’s United States Studies Centre (2009-17), a former editor of the Spectator Australia (2009-14), senior federal Liberal leader adviser/speech writer (2008), opinion editor of The Australian (2001-08), editorial writer at the Australian Financial Review (1998-01) and assistant editor at the American Enterprise Institute in Washington, DC (1995-98).

Tom's articles have been published by the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Washington Post, The Spectator, Financial Times, Foreign Affairs, The National Interest, The American Interest and The American Conservative. He has also appeared on CNN, CNBC, Bloomberg, Al Jazeera, Sky News, SBS, Seven, Nine, Ten and ABC radio and television. He hosts Between the Lines on the ABC's Radio National.

Daisy Cousens
Daisy Cousens

Daisy Cousens

Daisy is a freelance journalist, political commentator, and (occasional) provocateur based in Sydney, Australia. She graduated from the University of Sydney in 2015 with a Master of Creative Writing; preceded by a Bachelor of Music at the Australian Institute of Music, and a Bachelor of Arts at Macquarie University. Soon after completing her Masters, Daisy became a chief contributor at SheSaid Online Magazine, and in 2016 began contributing to The Spectator Australia.

Her focus is political ideology, culture, and satire. She was also the Editorial Assistant at Quadrant Magazine, and remains a continuing contributor for the Quadrant print edition.

Along with The Spectator and Quadrant, Daisy has also contributed to Mamamia and Penthouse (for the articles). She was a speaker at the 5th Annual Freidman Conference 2017, focusing on identity politics, the trials of being a feminist ‘apostate’, and how third-wave feminism is harmful to women. Daisy also spoke at the inaugural Libertyfest Conference in Brisbane.

Daisy enjoys sports journalism, and has freelanced for The Roar Sports, with a focus on tennis. She has also appeared on QandA, ABC News24, Paul Murray Live, The Project, Mark Latham’s Outsiders, Jones and Co, Credlin, The Drum, and Hack Live on ABC2. Daisy is a regular Thursday night panelist on The Bolt Report, and encourages everyone to watch not just for her (allegedly) cutting edge opinion-giving, but also her fabulous outfits.

Joanne Nova
Joanne Nova

Joanne Nova

Joanne Nova finished her Bachelor of Science degree with first class honours, A+ grades and both the FH Faulding, and The Swan Brewery Prizes, at the University of Western Australia. She also has a Graduate Certificate in Science Communication from the ANU, and worked for three years as an Associate Lecturer for the Graduate Diploma in Science Communication program at the Australian National University.

Joanne is the former host of Y?, a children’s science program on Channel 9 and had numerous other Television and Radio slots, including presently presenting a weekly spot with Laurie Atlas of 4RO in Queensland.

Jo's blog has been regularly voted the best blog in Australia & New Zealand, and she is the author of numerous publications such as the Climate Skeptic handbook, which has been translated into 15 languages. Joanne has given keynote addresses and dinner speeches at national conferences and launches, for groups like CPA’s (Certified Practicing Accountants), Transplant Nurses Association, Aged Care Australia, BDS Accounting, The Australian Science Teachers Association, The Australian Science Festival, ACTEW (ACT Electricity and Water), and Amnesty International and we look forward to her finally having the chance to join us at the Friedman Conference!

Professor Gregory Melleuish
Professor Gregory Melleuish

Professor Gregory Melleuish

Professor Gregory Melleuish works both a political scientist and as a historian as well as having interests in religious studies. He has published seven single authored books, and published over eighty refereed journal articles and book chapters. He has been awarded three large ARC (Discovery) grants, being either sole CI or 1st named CI in all cases.

Greg has organised many conferences, workshops and symposia over the years from the V Gordon Childe centenary conference at the University of Queensland in 1990 to the recent conference on Universal History held by the Paul Piccone Telos Institute in New York in February 2015. In 2014 Greg reviewed the National History Curriculum for Schools as part of the National Curriculum Review conducted for the Commonwealth government. He has had a long involvement in matters related to the development of a National History curriculum, having written one of the papers for the 2006 Australian History Summit.

Greg teaches both History and Politics, including political theory, Australian politics, Ancient History and World History. He also writes occasionally on contemporary political issues, largely in the Australian and The Conversation.

Greg’s most recent book is Despotic State or Free Individual? Two Traditions of Democracy in Australia, Australian Scholarly Publishing 2014, and a collection he has edited on Liberalism and Conservatism in Australia, which includes essays by two of his postgraduate students, Zachary Gorman and Paul Brown, published by Connor Court in 2015.

Greg’s current research interests include the first major study of Australian conservatism which is funded by a Discovery Grant project. He is also completing a book with Dr Susanna Rizzo (Notre Dame) on The Post Secular and Post Secular History.

Dr Ben O'Neill
Dr Ben O'Neill

Dr Ben O'Neill

Dr Ben O'Neill is a statistical researcher and data scientist, and Honourary Lecturer in statistics at UNSW. He is presently undertaking statistical research with the Department of Health.

He has published work in the various academic journals on statistics, economics and philosophy. He will be presenting a session on discrimination and inequality of outcomes in social processes. He has a broad interest in statistical theory and practice, and has written a number of articles about the theory and practice of statistical discrimination.

Graham Young
Graham Young

Graham Young

Graham is Executive Director of the Australian Institute for Progress. In 1999 he founded eJournal On Line Opinion, which he still edits. It was designed to foster diversity of opinion. He is also an Australian pioneer in using the Internet for qualitative and quantitative research and publishes regular analysis at What the People Want.

Between 1994 and 1997 he was Vice President and Campaign Chairman of the Queensland Liberal Party and is an acknowledged expert in political campaigning.

Fr Chris Yates
Fr Chris Yates

Fr Chris Yates

An occasional contributor to The Spectator's Flat White, Fr Chris is a classical liberal who understands the Christian gospel to be best interpreted through this tradition. A member of the Society of the Holy Cross, a traditionalist society within the Anglican Communion, he has contributed to conferences of the Anglican / Orthodox dialogue in Oxford and is currently exploring a transition to the Russian Orthodox Church.

Fr Chris Yates is a Church of England priest of the catholic tradition. After ten years in the UK Police Force he trained for the priesthood at Ripon College Cuddesdon, Oxford, before moving to Australia in 2010. Fr Chris spent six years in Port Stephens as a parish priest and NSW Police Chaplain. Fr Chris returned from a year in England last October and is currently a Policy Adviser to Senator David Leyonhjelm.

Sydney Watson
Sydney Watson

Sydney Watson

We are delighted to have joining us one of the rising stars and most provocative commentators in alternative media in Australia, the one and only Sydney Watson! A self-described conservative with libertarian tendencies, Sydney is a freelance journalist and political commentator from Melbourne, Australia.

With a Bachelor of Arts in criminology and completing a Master of journalism at the University of Melbourne, Sydney is a passionate advocate for freedom and conservative values. She offers a unique perspective on political and social issues as a dual citizen of America and Australia and has a particular interest in journalism, feminism, the destruction of free speech, and gun control legislation!

James Fox Higgins
James Fox Higgins

James Fox Higgins

Chairing our discussion of Christianity and Libertarianism, and returning to the Friedman Conference for the second year in a row, shall be James Fox Higgins! James is a writer, producer, and musician. James is passionate about uniting Christianity and Libertarianism, and believes the two are inextricably linked, and neither can survive without the other.

After discovering Aristotelian philosophy and developing a deep revulsion for the moral relativism and casual violent ideologies of the left-wing arts world, James turned his attention to writing and podcasting, founding The Rational Rise, a youtube channel and podcast dedicated to exploration of rational philosophy, politics, theology, arts, culture, and science fiction.

Harry Stutchbury
Harry Stutchbury

Harry Stutchbury

Harry Stutchbury is the President of the NSW Young Liberals and a Public Affairs Manager at the NSW Minerals Council. Previously he has worked for former Prime Minister The Hon. John Howard OM AC and has been published in The Sydney Morning Herald and The Spectator and we are sure he will have great insights as to how to achieve pro-liberty change from within.

Parnell Palme McGuinness
Parnell Palme McGuinness

Parnell Palme McGuinness

Parnell Palme McGuinness is a journalist, writer and Managing Director of communications consultancy Thought Broker. She specialises in business and policy communications and has worked with peak bodies and businesses of all sizes. Parnell's experience spans multiple communications disciplines, including public relations, advertising, editing, and policy. Her clients have included the Business Council of Co-operatives and Mutuals, LEK Consulting, Bain & Company, Advisian, and the Menzies Research Centre.

She is a fluent German speaker and spent far too many of her school holidays as a child behind the Iron Curtain, staying with her East German grandparents. The political and economic lessons of those visits materially shaped her world view.

In 2017, Parnell made a study of the German election campaign, interviewing candidates, political campaigners and ordinary Germans on the forces reshaping Germany and the European continent.

Parnell is a regular contributor to The Daily Telegraph and Sky News. She has also been published in the Fairfax syndicated press, The Australian, and appeared on the ABC.

Vale Sloane
Vale Sloane

Vale Sloane

Another Australian based in Washington DC, we are lucky to have Vale Sloane from the Atlas Network coming home to share with us how we can become more effective advocates for change! Vale started at Atlas Network in 2016 as the Institute Relations and Programs Manager.

He participated in the Charles Koch Institute's Koch Associate Program in 2016-2017. Hailing from Sydney, Australia, Vale attended the University of Sydney where he received his Bachelors of International and Global Studies (2013) and Bachelor of Laws (2015).

He worked in Australian politics throughout college and after graduation, including on local and national election campaigns between 2009-2015. Vale has also worked in the private sector as Business Development Manager at an eLearning company prior to joining Atlas Network.

Dr James Lark
Dr James Lark

Dr James Lark

Dr Lark is a professor/lecturer in the Department of Systems and Information Engineering and the Applied Mathematics Program at the University of Virginia; he is also an affiliated faculty member of the Department of Statistics at the University.

He is a member of the governing board of the United States Libertarian Party; he served as chair of the party during the 2000-2002 term. He serves as the party's representative to the International Alliance of Libertarian Parties.

He is the secretary of Liberty International and a member of the Board of Advisors of Students For Liberty. He served as chair of the Board of Directors of the Advocates for Self-Government from 2009 until 2016. He has been involved with building libertarian groups on college campuses since 1985.

Senator James Paterson
Senator James Paterson

Senator James Paterson

Senator James Paterson was appointed to the Senate in March 2016. Prior to his appointment, he worked as a special adviser for Senator Mitch Fifield, for the Victorian Employers' Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VECCI) before joining the Institute of Public Affairs (IPA) as editor of the IPA Review publication.

In the IPA, Paterson was promoted to director of communications and development, before being promoted to deputy executive director in September 2014 where he rose to national prominance for his consistent and articulate defences of freedom accross all media!

Tony Makin
Tony Makin

Tony Makin

Tony Makin is Professor of Economics and Director of the APEC Study Centre at Griffith University. He has previously served as an International Consultant Economist with the IMF Institute and as a senior economist in the Australian federal departments of Finance, Foreign Affairs and Trade, The Treasury and Prime Minister and Cabinet.

He is a member of the National Economic Panel of the Economic Society, has been Australian convenor of the structural issues group of the Pacific Economic Co-operation Council (PECC) and is author of International Money and Finance, Global Finance and the Macroeconomy and Global Imbalances, Exchange Rates and Stabilization Policy, as well as many journal articles!

John O'Connell - Chief Executive of the UK Taxpayers' Alliance
John O'Connell - Chief Executive of the UK Taxpayers' Alliance

John O'Connell

John O'Connell joined the TPA as an intern in 2009. Since then he has worked at every level of the organisation becoming CEO in 2016. As a researcher, and later Research Director, he wrote major reports for the TPA on quangos, government capital procurement, regional business policy and local government pensions.

He co-authored the influential paper How to Save £50 Billion: reducing spending for sustainable public finances, released in conjunction with the Institute of Directors. He also uncovered how local councils were spending Preventing Violent Extremism grants, finding more detailed information than could be gathered by Parliamentary Questions.

John oversaw the work of the 2020 Tax Commission. He also wrote and edited several sections of its final report, The Single Income Tax, which won the Templeton Freedom Award from the Atlas Network.

John frequently represents the TPA on television and radio, including prominent appearances on flagship broadcast programmes and documentaries. He also regularly speaks for the TPA at events, delivering speeches on the TPA’s campaigns and research. In April 2012 John completed the Think Tank MBA in America, an intensive training course offered by the Atlas Network. He has a BA from Nottingham Trent University and an MSc from University College London.

Andrew Bragg
Andrew Bragg

Andrew Bragg

Andrew Bragg is an author, presenter, leader and accountant who works as an Executive Director of the Business Council of Australia. He regularly contributes for the Australian Financial Review, Daily Telegraph, The Australian and The Guardian and appears on the ABC, Sky News & Sky Business. Andrew usually writes about tax, federalism, competitiveness and trade, financial services and the campaign landscape.

Andrew has worked as an accountant, think tanker and senior executive in the financial services industry. He was the National Director of the 2017 Liberals & Nationals for Yes campaign in support of same sex marriage which delivered Yes majorities in 71 of 76 Coalition seats.

His 2017 short book Fit for Service (Connor Court) is an acclaimed framework for 21st century trade policy for Australia. Its extracts appeared in the Australian Financial Review and was featured on Sky News, Radio 2GB and Quadrant.

Andrew's passion for public policy stems from his strong belief a strong economy is the basis of a just society.

Milica Kostic
Milica Kostic

Milica Kostic

Milica graduated from the Faculty of Political Science, International Relations at the University of Belgrade in 2013. Since 2009, Milica has been a member of Libertarian club Libek, a Serbian think-tank, where she worked as a Communications and Events Manager. One of the biggest success in her career was organizing the first Tax Payer’s March in Serbia.

Milica first got involved with European Students For Liberty as a Local Coordinator in 2013 after she took part in the organization of the first Regional Conference in Belgrade. After that, she joined the Executive Board where she served as a Regional Director of the Black Sea Region (Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bulgaria, Georgia, Israel, Turkey and Romania).

Milica is now working as an Events and Communications Associate at SFL, organizing events in Europe. She was responsible for organizing the biggest libertarian conference in Europe - LibertyCon! LibertyCon is ESFL’s largest and most successful event, gathering more than 900 students and young professionals as well as the most renowned speakers from all around the world. Alongside her strong passion for liberty she’s also very passionate about languages. She speaks four different languages and is currently learning spanish.

Gabriela D’Souza
Gabriela D’Souza

Gabriela D’Souza

Gabriela D’Souza is a Melbourne-based economist and policy analyst with a professional background in research centres and think tanks. Her research expertise is diverse, across topics such as superannuation, education, and social disadvantage. More recently, she has been conducting research on immigration, with a particular focus on immigration patterns in Australia and the labour market outcomes of migrants.

She holds a Bachelor of Applied Economics from the University of Canberra, and is currently pursuing a Master of Economics at Monash University.

Hon. Aaron Stonehouse MLC

A fan of Ron Paul, Milton Friedman, Thomas Sowell, and FA Hayek Aaron believes that each person is best equipped to make decisions about their own life, not politicians or bureaucrats and that he would rather think for himself than have others impose their beliefs on him.

He has already declared war on the nanny state in WA and has called for the legalisation of paintball & airsoft, marijuana, e-cigarettes, tasers for self defence, and to abolish abolish restrictions on trading hours for licensed venues

When leaving high-school, Aaron went directly into the workforce where he worked in retail and more recently in a call centre. He has been a member of the LDP since 2014.

Dr. Jonathan V. Hall
Dr. Jonathan V. Hall

Dr. Jonathan V. Hall

Dr. Jonathan V. Hall is the Chief Economist and Director of Public Policy at Uber. Prior to joining Uber Technologies in 2014, Dr. Hall held research positions at Google and Pandora Media. Dr. Hall received an A.B. in Economics from Harvard College in 2007, an A.M. in Economics from Harvard University in 2008, and a Ph.D. in Economics from Harvard University in 2010.

Dr. Hall leads the policy and economics function at Uber. He and his colleagues write and publish research on a wide range of topics, such as the labor market for drivers, the value of flexible work arrangements, the benefits of dynamic pricing, and the consumer surplus derived from ride sharing. The team provides economics expertise to the company's legal department and works cross-functionally with data scientists on understanding Uber's marketplace. It also works closely to align new product development with public policy goals and constraints, as well as to provide support on policy issues to public affairs teams across the globe.

Simon Breheny
Simon Breheny

Simon Breheny

Simon is the Director of Policy at the IPA, an author, and winner of the prestigious Young Libertarian of the Year award in 2015! Simon has been published in the Australian, the Australian Financial Review, the Sydney Morning Herald, the Age, the Daily Telegraph, the Herald Sun, the Canberra Times, the Sunday Tasmanian, the Guardian and the Punch. He is regularly interviewed on radio around the country in relation to legal rights and freedom of speech, and has appeared on ABC1's Q&A, 7.30 and Lateline, ABC News 24, Channel Ten’s The Project, Channel 7's Weekend Sunrise and Sky News' The Nation, AM Agenda, Lunchtime Agenda and PM Agenda.

Simon is also a regular contributor on ABC’s News Breakfast.

Simon has also appeared as a witness to give expert evidence before the Senate Standing Committee on Environment and Communications, Senate Legal and Constitutional Affairs Legislation Committee, the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Intelligence and Security, Legal and Constitutional Affairs References Committee and the NSW Legislative Council Standing Committee on Law and Justice.

Simon grew up in central Victoria and attended Catholic College Bendigo before moving to Melbourne to study a Bachelor of Arts/Bachelor of Laws at the University of Melbourne. While completing his studies, Simon was elected President of the Melbourne University Law Students' Society and appointed Vice-President of the Victorian Council of Law Students' Societies.

Areas of expertise: legal rights, rule of law, legal history and philosophy, freedom of speech, liberal democracy, property rights, privacy, nanny state and regulatory agencies.

Dr Zachary Gorman

His research speciality is the history of classical liberalism in pre-war Australian and Colonial politics, covering figures such as George Reid, Henry Parkes and Bruce Smith.

As an up-and-coming historian, Zachary has been published widely in both academic journals and Quadrant. His first book, a biography of Sir Joseph Carruthers, founder of the original NSW Liberal Party and a key figure in ensuring that 'liberalism' in Australia came to be associated with the centre-right, is currently being produced by Connor Court Publishing.

Nicola Wright

Nicola is a digital communications professional based in Perth who is passionate about liberty and human flourishing .

She has an interest in free speech advocacy, and resisting the 'nanny state'. Nicola has had contributions in The Spectator Australia, Online Opinion and Spiked Online, and writes and edits content for LibertyWorks Inc.

Daniel Wild
Daniel Wild

Daniel Wild

Daniel Wild is a Research Fellow at the Institute of Public Affairs. He specialises in red tape, regulation, economic policy, the philosophy of free enterprise, and criminal justice. Daniel has authored research papers on economic policy, environmental regulation, and criminal justice reform.

Daniel frequently appears in the media, and has published a number of opinion pieces in The Australian, The Daily Telegraph, The Sydney Morning Herald, The Courier Mail, and The Spectator. Daniel has also made a number of radio and television appearances, including on 2GB, 3AW, Sky News, and Channel 7 News.

Daniel previously worked at the Commonwealth Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet where he analysed global and domestic macroeconomic policy. Prior to that he worked at the Commonwealth Department of Finance where he worked on regulatory reform.

Daniel holds an honours qualification in economics and a degree in international studies from the University of Adelaide.

Professor James Dalziel

James Dalziel is Dean of Education at Morling Theological College, and is a Professor of the University of Divinity. James’ interests including Educational Technology, Learning Design, Christian Education and Moral Values in Education.

James was previously Professor of Learning Technology and Director of the Macquarie E-Learning Centre of Excellence (MELCOE) at Macquarie University from 2003-2015. Before this he was at the University of Sydney as a Senior Lecturer in the Institute for Teaching and Learning (2001-2003), and a Lecturer and Associate Lecturer in Psychology (1995-2001).

James is a member of the Academic Board of the Australian College of Theology, and a Research Fellow at The Excellence Centre at Pacific Hills Christian School and has authored over 80 publications including a recently edited book on learning design.

David Seymour
David Seymour

David Seymour

David is the MP for Epsom in New Zealand, Leader of the classically liberal ACT Party, and former Parliamentary Undersecretary to the Ministers of Education and Regulatory Reform. David grew up in Whangarei and later moved south to study at the University of Auckland. Although a graduate in Electrical Engineering and Philosophy, after his studies he moved into the world of policy.

David moved to Canada to work as a policy analyst in Canada for a private sector think tank, appearing on almost every Canadian media outlet on topics from taxes to taxi regulations.

After returning to New Zealand in 2011, David advised then Epsom MP and ACT Party Leader John Banks on the initial policy development for Partnership (or Charter) Schools, before the phone rang again for another job in Canada with Reform Party founder Preston Manning.

In 2014 he was preselected and then elected as the ACT candidate for Epsom, after knocking on 13,000 doors within his electorate. As a coalition MP, David pushed relentlessly for housing affordability and cutting red tape. Some of his achievements include extending licensing hours for the Rugby World Cup and the on-going development of charter schools. Within the last year, David pioneered the End of Life Choices Bill, which seeks to decriminalise voluntary assisted dying in New Zealand.

In coalition he held the government to account, and now in opposition, serves as a solid voice for liberal principles and New Zealand’s centre-right.

Anthony Morris QC

Tony will be hosting our very own "hypothetical" which will no doubt be a highlight of #freidman18! Appointed QC in 1992, Tony was the youngest such appointment in Australia’s legal history, and the youngest QC appointed in any Commonwealth country during the Twentieth Century.

Well known as one of Australia's more eminant barristers, most recently Tony represented previous Friedman Conference speaker & one of the persecuted #QUT3 Calum Thwaits against the injustices against them by the Human Rights Commission under section 18C.

Anna Nix Kumar
Anna Nix Kumar

Anna Nix Kumar

Bringing a wealth of experience in both the American and Australian political arenas, Anna is a sharp-minded strategist and communications professional. Anna employs the latest tactics and analysis to deliver for clients, drawing on 15 years’ experience working on American and Australian political campaigns, and in the US Congress.

Since moving to Australia in 2013, Anna has worked alongside both State and Federal governments. She excels at distilling complex issues into executable strategies and delivering multifaceted commercial and issues campaigns and we are delighted that she will be able to join us!

The Hon. Nick Minchin

The Hon Nick Minchin has recently returned home after spending 2014-2017 serving as the Australian Consul-General in New York. Prior to this he was a Senator for South Australia from 1993 to 2011 holding positions including Minister for Finance, Minister for Industry, and Special Minister of State.

During his time as Leader of the Opposition in the Senate he was responsible for campaign for the Liberal Party to drop its support for a failed ETS scheme, and was the mastermind behind the anti-carbon tax campaign.

At university, Nick was a member of the libertarian Workers Party, and while he no-longer identifies as a libertarian, he has been a consistent and vocal champion of small government, federalism, reducing spending, cutting regulation, and voluntary voting. We are delighted that he shall finally be able to join us!

Samuel Lee
Samuel Lee

Samuel Lee

Joining us this year to talk about how we can reduce what the government steals from us is Samuel Lee from Atlas Chartered Accountants! With 15 years experience in the areas of business services, taxation and external audits, Sam founded Atlas Chartered Accountants in 2017 and specialises in advising start-ups and family tax groups on how to navigate through the numerous business regulations and tax law.

He has a Bachelor of Commerce, majoring in Accounting and sub majoring in Commercial Law and will help you personally put libertarian principles into practice. So we are delighted to have him join us!

Jonathan Blanks

Jonathan Blanks is a Research Associate in Cato’s Project on Criminal Justice and a Writer in Residence at Harvard University’s Fair Punishment Project. His research is focused on law enforcement practices, overcriminalization, and civil liberties.

Blanks has appeared on various television, radio, and internet media including HuffPost Live, Bloomberg Law Radio, and Voice of America. His work has been published in the Washington Post, The New Republic, The Atlantic, Denver Post, Chicago Tribune, Democracy Journal, Philadelphia Inquirer, Vox.com, Vice, Reason, Libertarianism.org, Timeline, and the Indianapolis Star, among others. In 2015, Blanks testified before the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights on police accountability.

Blanks is a graduate of Indiana University.

The Hon. Dr. Peter Phelps MLC
The Hon. Dr. Peter Phelps MLC

The Hon. Dr. Peter Phelps MLC

Phelps is an "obscure NSW backbencher", described by colleagues as ‘the conscience of the parliamentary Liberal Party’ presumably because, like all consciences, he is routinely ignored in favour of ease and/or expediency.

His current projects include the liberalisation of vaping laws, getting compensation for victims of government expropriation, debunking University Leftism, and reforming the NSW Independent Commission Against Corruption.

In 2016 Dr Phelps demonstrated true courage in resigning as government whip in the NSW Legislative Council after a particularly communist and terrible ethanol mandate was pushed through by the NSW Government making him a hero to libertarians everywhere.

Lorraine Finlay

Lorraine Finlay is a law lecturer at Murdoch University, teaching in constitutional law, criminal law and international human rights. Her recent research has focused on freedom of speech, being one of the co-authors of the 2015 book No Offence Intended: Why 18C is Wrong.

Prior to joining Murdoch, Lorraine worked as a State Prosecutor with the WA DPP and was a Judge’s Associate at the High Court of Australia. She holds a dual Masters in Law from New York University and National University of Singapore.

Lorraine is a former President of the Australian Liberal Students' Federation (2001-02) and international intern with The Leadership Institute in Washington D.C (2002).

Dr Ben Heard
Dr Ben Heard

Dr Ben Heard

Dr Ben Heard is founder and executive director of the Australian environmental NGO Bright New World and we are delighted to announce he'll be joining us at this years conference. Ben is recognised as a leading voice for the use of nuclear technologies to address our most pressing global challenges.

It certainly didn’t start that way but following a critical appraisal of his anti-nuclear stance, he found it unsupportable. Ben holds a Masters in Sustainability from Monash University and in 2018 received his Ph.D. in science from the University of Adelaide for a thesis examined Australian and global clean energy supply with a focus on the role of nuclear technologies. He has presented his research findings around Australia and the world. Founding Bright New World takes Ben back to his NGO beginnings, to give environmentalism a reboot for the 21st century.