Dan Shuchman, Chairman
Daniel is Chairman of the Board of the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE), the pre-eminent nonprofit dedicated to defending and sustaining free speech at America’s colleges and universities. He is also fund manager at MSD Partners, L.P., a New York-based investment firm. Prior to that, Daniel worked at Goldman Sachs & Co., and at Gotham Partners, a private investment partnership. He is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, where he studied history and philosophy. After graduation, Daniel worked at the Manhattan Institute, a non-profit public policy organization. Daniel has been published in The Wall Street Journal, Reason, Forbes, The Harvard Journal of Law and Public Policy, and Survival (the journal of the International Institute for Strategic Studies.) He lives in New York City with his wife and two children.
Lenore Skenazy, President
A journalist by trade, Lenore spent 14 years at The New York Daily News as a reporter-turned-opinion columnist, and two more at The New York Sun. In 2008, after her column “Why I Let My 9 Year Old Ride the Subway Alone” landed her on every talk show from The Today Show to Dr. Phil, Lenore founded the book and blog “Free-Range Kids.” These launched the anti-helicopter parenting movement and garnered her the nickname, “America’s Worst Mom.” She got a promotion of sorts when Discovery Life tapped her to host the reality TV show, World’s Worst Mom. Lenore has lectured internationally from Microsoft to DreamWorks to the Sydney Opera House, and been profiled everywhere from The New York Times to The New Yorker. (She was even on The Daily Show!) Over the years, she has written for everyone from The Wall Street Journal to Mad Magazine. Yes — Mad. After 10 years of watching parents nod along as she described how our culture has force-fed them fear, her aim at Let Grow is to turn agreement into action, making it easy and normal to give kids the same kind of freedom most of us had — and loved. Lenore received her B.A. from Yale and her Master’s Degree from Columbia. She lives in New York City with her husband and beloved computer. Her sons have (safely!) flown the coop.
Jonathan Haidt, Founding Member
Jon is the Thomas Cooley Professor of Ethical Leadership at New York University’s Stern School of Business. He is also author of the New York Times bestseller, The Righteous Mind: Why Good People are Divided by Politics and Religion. In it, Haidt offers an account of the origins of the human moral sense, and shows how variations in moral intuition can help explain the polarization and dysfunction of American politics. He is co-author of the seminal Atlantic article, “The Coddling of the American Mind,” discussing what has made college students so easily hurt. With Skenazy, he co-authored “The Fragile Generation,” the most-read Reason Magazine story ever, with over 2,000,000 views. Haidt is also founder of Heterodox Academy, an organization dedicated to ensuring viewpoint diversity to campus. He received his B. A. from Yale University in 1985 and his Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania in 1992. He then did post-doctoral research at the University of Chicago and in Orissa, India. He was a professor at the University of Virginia from 1995 until 2011, before joining NYU. His writings appear frequently in The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal, and he has given four TED talks. He was named one of the top global thinkers by Foreign Policy magazine and also by Prospect magazine, and one of the 50 most influential psychologists in the world. He lives in New York with his wife and two children.
Peter Gray, Founding Member
Peter is a research professor of psychology at Boston College. He has conducted and published research in comparative, evolutionary, developmental, and educational psychology and is author of Psychology (Worth Publishers), an introductory college textbook used at universities around the country, now in its 7th edition. He is also author of Free to Learn: Why Unleashing the Instinct to Play Will Make Our Children Happier, More Self-Reliant, and Better Students for Life, in which he argues that in order to foster children who will thrive in today’s constantly changing world, we must trust them to steer their own learning and development. His popular TED talk discusses the same issues. Gray is also author of the Psychology Today blog Free to Learn. He did his undergraduate study at Columbia University and earned a Ph.D. in biological sciences at Rockefeller University. Gray’s research publications span a wide range. Although generally known as an evolutionary psychologist, he has conducted and published research in neuroendocrinology, animal behavior, developmental psychology, anthropology, and education. He is most well known for his research concerned with children’s natural ways of learning and the role of play in children’s development. His own play includes not only his research and writing, but also long distance bicycling, kayaking, back-woods skiing, and vegetable gardening. He lives outside of Boston with his wife and lectures internationally.
Tracy Tomasso, Executive Director
Tracy is an entrepreneur and technology expert with extensive experience in operations, finance, sales and marketing in both early-stage and Fortune 100 companies. She was co-founder of Ypulse, a Manhattan-based marketing consulting and research firm focused on youth and the Millennial generation. Prior to that, Tracy led the expansion of Globalpark, a German-based market research software provider, to the U.S. She served as Chief Operating Officer for RichFX in New York, as Vice President of Operations at T-Mobile in their London headquarters, and she began her career at Procter & Gamble. Tracy is a graduate of The Ohio State University in Computer Information Systems Engineering. She lives in Atlantic Highlands, New Jersey, with her husband and young daughter.