Introducing the National Privacy Advisory Council

October 19, 2023

People United for Privacy Foundation (PUFPF) is proud to announce the formation of the National Privacy Advisory Council (NPAC). The NPAC convenes champions of personal privacy rights with diverse experiences from across the ideological spectrum and various fields to offer strategic insights for PUFPF’s policy priorities.

Comprised of nationally renowned leaders who are uniquely positioned to serve as advisors on issues relating to nonprofit donor privacy, founding members of the NPAC include:

  • Lee Goodman, former Chairman, Federal Election Commission and Partner, Wiley Rein LLP
  • Rep. Ana Hernandez, Texas House of Representatives
  • Jerry Kilgore, former Virginia Attorney General
  • Pete McRoberts, Policy Director, ACLU of Iowa
  • Sandra Swirski, Founder, Integer
  • Dr. Yang Jianli, President and Founder, Citizen Power Initiatives for China

Let’s meet the inaugural members of the National Privacy Advisory Council.

Lee Goodman

Lee Goodman has been a longtime partner of PUFPF and our sister organization, People United for Privacy (PUFP). He brings decades of experience in First Amendment law to the Advisory Council, initially as an attorney for dozens of political and non-profit organizations, throughout his five-year tenure on the Federal Election Commission, and in his current litigation and advisory practice in Washington, DC.

Most recently, Lee spoke on a webinar sponsored by PUFP and hosted by the Arizona Capitol Times exploring the impacts of Arizona’s Proposition 211, an aggressive and expansive donor disclosure law facing serious legal challenges. Drawing on his experience as a litigator and as a former Chairman of the Federal Election Commission, Lee provided an overview of recent case law reaffirming donor privacy rights and how they may impact pending litigation surrounding the statute. During the 2021 Americans for Prosperity Foundation (AFPF) v. Bonta case before the U.S. Supreme Court, Lee authored an influential amicus brief in support of donor privacy for non-profit organizations and their supporters.  He has authored a comprehensive eight-chapter history of the First Amendment right of associational privacy.

Representative Ana Hernandez

During the 2023 session of the Texas Legislature, Representative Ana Hernandez sponsored a broadly supported bill (H.B. 4585) to generally prohibit state agencies from accessing and publicizing nonprofit membership and donor information. Introduced with an identical Senate companion, sponsored by Senator Donna Campbell (R), their bill received unanimous support throughout the legislative process.

Rep. Hernandez serves as Vice-Chair for the House Committee on State Affairs, and on the House Committee on Licensing & Administrative Procedures and the House Calendars Committee. Currently serving her ninth term in the Texas House, when she’s not serving her constituents, Rep. Hernandez is a practicing attorney in the Houston area.

Jerry Kilgore

As the former Attorney General for the Commonwealth of Virginia from 2002 to 2005, Jerry Kilgore is uniquely aware of how government regulations can violate donor privacy rights. After all, the landmark U.S. Supreme Court case, AFPF v. Bonta, derived from donor privacy invasions spearheaded by the Office of the California Attorney General. Drawing on his experience, Jerry was instrumental in securing the passage of the Personal Privacy Protection Act in Virginia during the General Assembly’s 2022 session. That bill, S.B. 324, passed the Democratic-controlled Virginia Senate unanimously. Jerry conveyed his expertise to lawmakers and the nonprofit community to ensure that Virginians are empowered to speak on issues they care about without fear of harassment and intimidation.

A Member at Cozen O’Connor, Jerry’s distinguished political career has afforded him connections in offices of state attorneys general across the country and bipartisan respect within the AG community. Jerry has earned a reputation as a trusted legal and policy adviser on both sides of the aisle.

Pete McRoberts

Pete McRoberts was the mastermind in pulling together a diverse coalition to support the passage of a 2021 bill (H.F. 309) in the Iowa Legislature protecting the privacy of nonprofit members and donors. As the Iowa Capital Dispatch observed at the time, “Interest groups from opposite ends of the political spectrum, including the Christian conservative Family Leader and LGBTQ advocacy organization One Iowa, joined together Wednesday in support of a bill aimed at a common goal: protecting the privacy of their donors. The bill also had the support of the ACLU of Iowa, Iowans for Tax Relief, Iowa Safe Schools and Americans for Prosperity, among others.”

As PUFP works to transcend ideological differences to advance free speech and personal privacy, Pete brings invaluable experience and insights to our coalition building efforts. As the ACLU of Iowa’s Policy Director, Pete is responsible for advancing the organization’s broad civil liberties agenda at the statehouse. He also works statewide and at the county and community level across Iowa on legal and policy issues. Pete possesses over two decades of policy experience and has previously served as an aide to state, national, and world leaders.

Sandra Swirski

Sandra Swirski has been a leading voice representing the philanthropic community in Washington, D.C for several decades. She is a trusted counselor to both policymakers and nonprofit organizations alike who appreciate how donor privacy is a foundational component for charitable giving. Her dual experience in the philanthropic and policy worlds gives her unique insights into nonprofit donor privacy issues.

A tax attorney by training and former advisor to several U.S. Senators, Sandra brings an innate appreciation for how laws governing tax-exempt entities impact free speech. She is the Founder of Integer, a full-service advocacy firm in Washington, D.C. specializing in economic and nonprofit policy, and previously co-founded Urban Swirski & Associates, a women-owned government relations firm.

Dr. Yang Jianli

Dr. Yang Jianli is a scholar and internationally recognized human rights activist who has dedicated his life to fighting for democracy in China. A witness to the Tiananmen Square protests and massacre, Dr. Yang was  imprisoned by the Chinese government from 2002 to 2007 for his political advocacy. Now in the United States, Dr. Yang has founded Citizen Power Initiatives for China to continue promoting democracy in China. Dr. Yang has deep personal experience with the chilling consequences of donor disclosure, as his organization and its supporters are under constant surveillance and persecution by the Chinese Communist Party.

As Dr. Yang explains in RealClearPolicy, “There are always people in power who want to surveil and control dissent. In a functioning democracy, they are denied the authority to do so. We must keep it that way. The price of our freedom – and our privacy – is eternal vigilance.” Dr. Yang is a forceful advocate for privacy and free speech whose personal experience vividly demonstrates the crucial importance of these rights to our society.

People United for Privacy Foundation looks forward to working with this distinguished and diverse group of experts to enhance our efforts to defend and advance privacy protections for nonprofits and their supporters. We thank all of the NPAC members for volunteering their time and experience to help make PUFPF a more effective advocate for Americans’ constitutional right to privately support the social causes of their choice.