The President’s Council


Phil ZuckermanPhil Zuckerman is a professor of sociology and secular studies at Pitzer College. Having joined the Pitzer faculty in 1998, Zuckerman also teaches at Claremont Graduate University and has been a guest professor at the University of Aarhus, Denmark. He is a fellow of the Secular Global Institute.

Zuckerman is the author of several books, including Living the Secular Life: New Answers to Old  Questions, Faith No More and Society Without God. He has also edited several volumes, including Atheism and Secularity, Sex and Religion and The Social Theory of W.E.B. Du Bois. His books have been translated and published in Danish, Farsi, Turkish, Chinese, Korean and Italian, and his work has been published in various scholarly journals, such as Sociology Compass, Sociology of Religion, Deviant Behavior and Religion, Brain, and Behavior. Additionally, he writes a regular blog for Psychology Today titled “The Secular Life” and contributes to the Huffington Post.

In 2011, Zuckerman created the first secular studies major in the nation. Secular studies is an interdisciplinary program focusing on manifestations of the secular in societies and cultures, past and present, and entails the study of non-religious people, groups, thought and cultural expressions. A native Californian, Zuckerman earned his bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees in sociology at the University of Oregon. He lives in Claremont with his wife, Stacy Elliott, and their three children.

Monica Miller '08
President’s Council President Monica Miller ’08 is an attorney at the American Humanist Association’s Appignani Humanist Legal Center. She runs its Washington office, and is also the legal working group leader of the Nonhuman Rights Project. Miller graduated from Pitzer College in 2008, having studied under Professor Phil Zuckerman. She received a master’s degree in public administration for environmental science and policy from Columbia University and graduated cum laude from Vermont Law School in 2012.

While at Pitzer College, Miller founded the Pitzer Animal Welfare Society and, in law school, she served as co-chair of the Animal Law Society. At Vermont Law School (VLS), she also created the “Secular Law Students Association,” which brought speakers such as Michael Newdow to the institution. Miller was a Dean’s Fellow at VLS where she taught first-year legal writing.

In pursuit of her concern for fundamental rights, Miller serves as an attorney for the Nonhuman Rights Project, working to obtain common law personhood rights for nonhuman animals.

Miller is a member of the bars of California and the District of Columbia. She is delighted to report that this year’s President’s Council Scholar is Alexis Eklund.

Alexis Eklund '16Alexis Eklund ’15, a senior majoring in sociology and secular studies, says “I have always been interested in what people do and why—sociology is a perfect fit. I knew this instantly when I sat in my first sociology course.”

Eklund is active in the Secular Student Alliance and spends time tutoring anthropology and sociology, which she feels is both meaningful work and gives her good teaching practice. She plans to pursue graduate studies, with the goal of teaching at the college level.

The President’s Council is a group of philanthropic leaders who come together annually to raise scholarship funds for Pitzer College.

In honor of Phil Zuckerman, this year’s keynote speaker, the 2015 event will provide financial aid for students studying secular studies.

2015 Executive Committee
Gary Briskman P’05
Linda Briskman P’05
Nancy Choate P’14
Bruce Corwin
Lori Goodman P’14
Deborah Kallick ’78
Corrine Kohlmeyer-Hyman P’15
Tory Mudd P’12
Joseph Praske P’13
Bruce Ross ’72
Randy Ross ’76
Leon Silverman P’15
Lisa Specht

President’s Council President Monica Miller ’08 and Pitzer College President Laura Skandera Trombley cordially invite you to attend the annual benefit event sponsored by the

Pitzer College President’s Council

A Private Reception and Talk by

Phil Zuckerman, PhD
Professor of Sociology and Secular Studies, Pitzer College
Distinguished Author

Hosted by Linda and Gary Briskman P’05
Sunday, April 26, 2015
3—5 p.m.
Beverly Hills, CA

Kindly reply today
[email protected]

Seating is limited. Reservations are available on a first-come basis and payable in advance by credit card or return check in the envelope provided. Your gift will be tax deductible with the exception of $35 per person.

Former US Attorney and Founder of Investigative Group lnternational Terry Lenzner P’99
Hosted by Vicki Gold and Shana Passman P’04, P’08, home of Don and Shana Passman, Beverly Hills.
President’s Council (PC) President Elliot Stein, chair of Senturion Forecasting, LLC

Political & Cultural Commentator David Brooks P’16
Hosted by PC President John Landgraf ’84, CEO FX Networks, William Fox Theater, Fox Studios,
Los Angeles

Punch Brothers Concert
PC President Randy White P’14, Senior VP The Nielsen Company,
Pellissier Mall, Pitzer College

Entrepreneur & KISS Cofounder Gene Simmons P’11
PC President Michael Ostin P’13, entertainment industry executive,
Founders Room, Pitzer College

Historic Preservation Architect Brenda Levin
PC President Fredric Roberts, former chairman of the National Association of Securities Dealers,
Benson Auditorium, Pitzer College

Actor, Environmentalist & Pitzer Trustee Robert Redford
Hosted by Ronald Burkle P’98, Yucaipa Companies, Green Acres Estate, Beverly Hills.
PC President Victoria Mudd P’12, writer/producer/Academy Award winner

Michael Govan, Director & CEO of Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA)
Hosted by Eli Broad P’78, The Broad Art Foundation, Santa Monica.
PC President Linda Briskman P’05, former Beverly Hills mayor

Associated Press CEO Thomas Curley P’00
Hosted by Robert Bookman P’07, Paradigm Agency, former home of Howard Hughes,
Hancock Park. PC President Kitty Keck

Former Secretary of the Navy John Lehman P’06
Hosted by Pitzer President Laura Skandera Trombley, City Club, Los Angeles.
PC President Kitty Keck, philanthropist/investor/photographer