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National First Amendment Summit

Wednesday, Sep. 13, 2023 @ 4:00 pm - 8:00 pm EDT

National First Amendment Summit

The National Constitution Center, in partnership with a coalition of leading free speech organizations, is convening a National First Amendment Summit to discuss the increasing threats to freedom of expression and to celebrate the opening of the Center's new First Amendment gallery.

A welcome reception with access to the National Constitution Center's new First Amendment gallery will take place from 4–5:15 p.m. The program will directly follow from 5:30–8 p.m. (Register to Attend In-Person)


To lead off the event, author and free-speech advocate Salman Rushdie will engage in a virtual keynote conversation with Suzanne Nossel, CEO of PEN America about the importance of free speech in a democratic society and the forces of censorship that imperil its existence.

Panel 1: The Origins of the First Amendment and Its Central Role in Democracy

Probing the origins of the First Amendment and its critical role as a check on the government

  • Akhil Reed AmarSterling Professor of Law and Political Science at Yale University
  • Jacob Mchangamafounder and CEO of Justitia; Research Professor at Vanderbilt University
  • Stephen SolomonMarjorie Deane Professor of Journalism at New York University; founder of NYU’s First Amendment Watch
  • Moderator: Jeffrey Rosen, president and CEO of the National Constitution Center

Panel 2: The First Amendment in the Courts

Exploring the current legal controversies filling the daily headlines—from defamation to book banning to threatening language

  • Floyd Abrams, senior counsel at Cahill Gordon & Reindel
  • Jameel Jaffer, executive director of the Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University
  • Lyrissa LidskyRaymond & Miriam Ehrlich Chair in U.S. Constitutional Law at Florida Law
  • Moderator: Bruce Brown, executive director of the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press

Panel 3: The First Amendment on Campus and Online

Examining the increasing conflicts involving free speech on campuses and online in an age of social media, artificial intelligence, and other new technologies

  • Will Creeley, legal director at FIRE, the Foundation for Individual Rights and Expression
  • Jeannie Suk Gersen, John H. Watson, Jr., Professor of Law at Harvard Law School
  • Nadine Strossen, John Marshall Harlan II Professor of Law, Emerita, at New York Law School
  • Moderator: Jeffrey Rosen, president and CEO of the National Constitution Center

This program is presented in partnership with the Freedom Forum, FIRE, the First Amendment Watch at NYU, PEN America, and the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press.


Wednesday, Sep. 13, 2023
4:00 pm - 8:00 pm EDT


National Constitution Center
525 Arch Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106 United States
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National Constitution Center
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