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American Democracy Conference

The Center for Politics at the University of Virginia

Engaging. Inspiring. Educational. American.

The American Democracy Conference presented by the UVA Center for Politics in partnership with the Frank Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy offers an engaging and informative event centered around political discussions and public policy issues. This program offers a unique opportunity to engage with political and policy experts, gain insights into pressing issues, and connect with individuals who are deeply involved in the world of politics and public policy. It's an event designed to inform, inspire, and foster meaningful discussions on matters of national and international importance. Everything we do must fulfill our goal of instilling citizens with an appreciation for the core values of American freedom, justice, equality, civility, and service.

21st Annual American Democracy Conference

Presented by the UVA Center for Politics in partnership with the Frank Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy on January 22 at the Newcomb Hall Ballroom in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Keynote Speakers included:

Mia Love

Mia B. Love is a former Representative of the 4th Congressional District of Utah. Love was elected to office in 2014. She is the first and only Republican black female to ever serve in The United States Congress.

Kathleen Kennedy Townsend

Kathleen Kennedy Townsend is the Director of Retirement Security at the Economic Policy Institute, and currently serves as a research professor at Georgetown University, where she founded the Center for Retirement Initiatives. She was Maryland’s first woman lieutenant governor, from 1995 to 2003. Prior to being elected lieutenant governor, Townsend served as deputy assistant attorney general of the United States.


Rachel Bitecofer is Assistant Director of the Wason Center for Public Policy at Christopher Newport University, USA where she teaches classes on political behavior, campaigns, elections, and political analysis.

Barbara Comstock was elected to Congress in 2014, and served two terms representing Virginia’s Tenth Congressional District, making her the first woman elected to that seat. She was named as one of the “Top Ten Most Effective Lawmakers” in the 115th Congress by the Center for Effective Lawmaking, a joint effort of the University of Virginia and Vanderbilt University.

Dr. Wendy Osefo is a Nigerian-American television personality and progressive political commentator and strategist. Wendy is a Professor of Education at The Johns Hopkins University, Contributor at The Hill, and the Founder and CEO of The 1954 Equity Project, LLC.

Leslie Sanchez is a Latina American author, political pundit affiliated with the Republican Party, and founder/CEO of Impacto Group LLC, a Washington, D.C.-based market research and consulting firm. She was ranked one of “Newsmax’s 50 Most Influential Latino Republicans”

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