Our Work | Annual Conference | 2010 | Awardees and entertainment

2010 Humanist Awards

At the 69th Annual Conference, the American Humanist Association will present the 2010 Humanist of the Year award to an individual who exemplifies the humanist lifestance and works toward progressive change. Past Humanist of the Year awardees include Representative Fortney "Pete" Stark, Joyce Carol Oates, Steven Pinker, P.Z. Myers, Alice Walker, Barbara Ehrenreich, and Kurt Vonnegut.

The AHA also awards special Humanist awards for achievements in art, science, social activism, and women's rights. Past awardees include Eleanor Smeal, Kim Gandy, Steve Benson, Judge John E. Jones, Julia Sweeney, and Oliver Stone.

Don't forget to check out our conference Speaker Highlights!


Humanist of the Year

Bill Nye, scientist, engineer, comedian, author, and inventor, is a man with a mission: to help foster a scientifically literate society. Nye is best known as the host of the PBS children's science show "Bill Nye the Science Guy," which won 18 Emmys in five years. He currently hosts "The 100 Greatest Discoveries" on the Science Channel and "The Eyes of Nye" on PBS, and has written five kids' books about science, including "Bill Nye's Great Big Book of Tiny Germs."


Humanist Heroine

Meg Bowman is a retired sociology professor from San Jose State University and author of many books on women's history. A veteran of the civil rights and peace movements, she participated in a number of sit-ins and marches since 1948. She served as co-chair of the AHA Feminist Caucus for over nine years.


Humanist Heroine

Annie Laurie Gaylor is co-president of the Freedom From Religion Foundation and executive editor of Freethought Today. She is the author of three books, including Women Without Superstition: No Gods, No Masters and Woe to the Women: The Bible Tells Me So.


Humanist Pioneer

Wendy Liu is a Seattle-based writer for the American Chronicle, an online magazine for national and international news. Her latest book, Everything I Understand About America I Learned In Chinese Proverbs, was published in 2009. She also serves as an independent China business consultant and translator.


Isaac Asimov Science Award

Robert Sapolsky is currently Professor of Biological Sciences, and Professor of Neurology and Neurological Sciences at Stanford University. He is currently the John A. and Cynthia Fry Gunn Professor at Stanford University, holding joint appointments in several departments, including Biological Sciences and Neurology & Neurological Sciences.


Humanist Lifetime Achievement Award


Frank Berger was best known as the developer of Miltown, the first mass-market psychiatric drug that would become a forerunner of drugs such as Valium and Prozac. Dr. Berger continued his work in drug development until 1975 and became chairman of medical research at the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research. A longtime member of the American Humanist Association and a signer of Humanist Manifesto III, he also supported the New York Society for Ethical Culture and the New York Academy of Sciences.



With Special Performances By



Brian Keith Dalton
Mr. Deity

Brian Keith Dalton is the creator of Mr. Deity, a web show that offers a humorous look at the day-to-day operations of the universe and the "Big Man" in charge. Mr. Deity became a YouTube sensation, airs exclusively on Sony Pictures Entertainment, and, with millions of fans, is lauded by the likes of Michael Shermer, Julia Sweeney, and Penn Jillette.


Jim Corbett
Humanist Music

Jim Corbett is a musician whose original songs "I Am a Humanist" and "It Must Be Jesus ... Well, Maybe Not" can be found on YouTube. He has written articles for the magazines of the Humanists of Washington, American Atheists, and the American Humanist Association. Jim is a business executive and has been a humanist for almost 35 years. He lives just north of Seattle with his wife and two kids.


"Heavy Mental" Show

Jamy Ian Swiss is a magician, author, and public speaker with more than twenty years of skeptical activism experience. He has appeared internationally for presenters ranging from Fortune 500 companies to the Smithsonian Institution. His television appearances include CBS 48 Hours, Comedy Central, PBS Nova and the PBS documentary The Art of Magic, and repeat appearances on The Today Show.

Ken Taylor and John Perry
Philosophy Talk at Stanford University

Ken Taylor and John Perry are hosts of Philosophy Talk, a nationally syndicated public radio show that brings the richness of philosophic thought to everyday subjects. Ken Taylor is Professor of Philosophy at Stanford University and the author of many books including Truth and Meaning. John Perry is Professor of Philosophy Emertus at Stanford University and a recipient of many honors, including the Nicod and Humboldt Prizes.