Ellen Johnson


Ellen Johnson

Ellen Johnson, president of American Atheists from 1995–2008, is an activist for atheist rights and the separation of church and state in the United States.

Career

Johnson has been active in American Atheists organization since 1978. She describes herself as a "second-generation atheist" and a life-long atheist. Her educational background consists of Bachelor's Degrees in Environmental Studies and Political Science, and a Master's Degree in Political Science from The New School for Social Research. [ [http://www.atheists.org/welcome.html Welcome from the President of American Atheists] "American Atheists"]

Johnson took over as president in 1995 after then-president and founder Madalyn Murray O'Hair went missing along with her son and granddaughter (they were later found to have been abducted and murdered by two ex-convicts).cite news | last =McAnally| first =Amber| title =Waters sentenced for role in O'Hair murder| work =The Daily Texan| date =2001-04-02| url =http://tspweb02.tsp.utexas.edu/webarchive/04-02-01/2001040207_s03_Waters.html| accessdate =2008-01-09 ]

In November 2002, Johnson announced the formation of the Godless Americans Political Action Committee (GAMPAC), a PAC to endorse political candidates who support the separation of church and state. She is the executive director of that organization. [http://www.godlessamericans.org/ GAMPAC explains its aims and officers] ]

Starting in 1994, she was the co-host of "The Atheist Viewpoint", a television program, which is available "on dozens of cable systems throughout the nation and on the Internet." [http://www.infidels.org/wire/stories/aa_030204.html AA Press Release: Ellen Johnson Slated for Donahue/MSNBC] ]

On December 20, 2005 she appeared on an ABC special, "Heaven – Where Is It? How Do We Get There?", for which she was interviewed by Barbara Walters. [ [http://www.atheists.org/flash.line/aamedia.htm Ellen Johnson Live on MSNBC/Carlson Program] February 20, 2006] She appeared on "Larry King Live" in April 2005, [ [http://transcripts.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/0504/14/lkl.01.html "What Happens After We Die?" transcript; "Larry King Live"; April 14, 2005] ] "Good Morning America" in December 2005, MSNBC's "Scarborough Country" on December 14, 2004, [ [http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/6719052 "Scarborough Country"; December 14, 2004] ] and appeared on Fox News three times in November and December 2003, and MSNBC's Phil Donahue.

On May 2, 2008 it was announced on the American Atheists blog that Johnson was leaving her post as President. [ [http://www.atheists.org/nogodblog/index.php/2008/05/02/important_american_atheists_has_a_new_pr American Atheists has a New President] May 2, 2008] On May 7, 2008, it was made public that Ellen Johnson was removed involuntarily by a vote of the board of directors. The reason was not revealed. [ [http://www.atheists.org/nogodblog/index.php/2008/05/07/special_official_statement_re_ellen_john "Post details: Special Official Statement RE: Ellen Johnson"; nogodblog.com; May 7, 2008] ]

References

External links

* [http://www.atheists.org/ American Atheists website]
* [http://godlessamericans.org/ GAMPAC website]
* [http://www.atheistviewpoint.tv/ "Atheist View Point" website]
* [http://www.thegreatamericangodout.com/ The Great American God-Out]


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