May 17, 2004
SENATOR PATRICK LEAHY TO RECEIVE EPIC CHAMPION
OF FREEDOM AWARD
Conference in Washington, DC to Explore Privacy,
WASHINGTON, DC - Senator Patrick Leahy will be honored on Thursday,
May 20 at "Freedom 2.0," a public policy conference in Washington,
DC, for his
work to safeguard civil liberties, protect privacy, and promote
Patrick Leahy of Burlington, Vermont was elected to the United
in 1974 and remains the only Democrat elected to this office from Vermont. He
was also the youngest Senator (34) elected from the Green Mountain State and
is now serving his fifth term.
Sometimes referred to as the "cyber senator," Leahy has been
actively involved in legislation associated with the Internet.
Leahy was one of the first members of Congress to go online and in
1995 he was
the second senator to post a homepage. His Web site has been
as one of the Senate's best and a leading Internet magazine called Leahy the
most "Net-friendly" member of Congress.
Senator Leahy has taken the lead on
many privacy issues, including Internet and medical records
privacy. Leahy held
Congress's first hearing in 1994 on privacy concerns relating to electronic
medical records. Senator Leahy is also a champion of open
government and worked
to update the Freedom of Information Act to ensure public access to
records in new electronic formats.
In the immediate aftermath of the terrorist
attacks of September 11, Leahy headed the Senate's negotiations on the 2001
anti-terrorism bill, the USA PATRIOT Act. He added checks and balances to the
bill to protect civil liberties, as well as provisions which he authored to
triple staffing along the US-Canada border, to authorize domestic
grants to states, and to facilitate the hiring of new FBI translators.
Rotenberg, President of EPIC, said, "We are very pleased to present
to Senator Leahy. No member of Congress has done more on behalf of
people to safeguard our basic freedoms. And no member of Congress has shown
a greater understanding of the far-reaching impact of new technology."
2:0: Distributed Democracy, Dialogue for a Connected World" will
civil society leaders, academic experts, and government decision
makers to explore
the critical challenges facing the Information Society - the
protection of privacy,
the transparency of government, the promotion of the Public Voice,
and the need
to assess the reliability of electronic voting systems.
Other speakers include
Rep. Rush Holt, who has introduced legislation to improve the reliability of
electronic voting systems, Ambassador David Gross, who leads the US
to the United Nations World Summit on the Information Society,
Vinton G. Cerf,
Chairman of ICANN, Nuala O'Connor-Kelley, Chief Privacy Officer for
of Homeland Security, and Giovanni Buttarelli, Secretary General of
Data Protection Authority.
The Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC)
is hosting the Freedom 2.0 conference. EPIC is a public interest
in Washington, D.C. established in 1994 to focus public attention on emerging
civil liberties issues and to protect privacy, the First Amendment,
value. Well regarded for its innovative and effective advocacy,
EPIC is celebrating
its tenth anniversary this year.
Senator Leahy will receive the award and make
brief remarks at the Washington Club on Dupont Circle on Thursday,
May 20, 2004
at 6 pm. The conference continues at the Washington Club with public policy
panels on May 21 and workshops on May 22.
The Freedom 2.0 conference is open
to the public. Registration information is available at
The media is invited to the reception on Thursday and the policy
panels on Friday.
Office of Senator Patrick Leahy
David Carle, Press Secretary
http://leahy.senate.gov/ (Sen. Leahy homepage)
EPIC Conference office (for registration information)
Paul Henning, Coordinator
http://www.epic04.org/ (Conference homepage)
Marc Rotenberg, EPIC President
http://www.epic.org/ (EPIC homepage)