Joan E. Bertin is a graduate of NYU Law School, where she was a fellow in the Arthur Garfield Hays Civil Liberties Program. After law school, she spent seven years representing indigent clients as a legal services lawyer, and more than a dozen litigating civil rights and civil liberties cases at the ACLU. She has taught at Columbia University, where she remains on the faculty, and at Sarah Lawrence College, where she held the Joanne Woodward Chair in Public Policy, but prefers activism to academia. She frequently speaks and writes on legal and policy issues, and is the author of more than 30 chapters and articles in professional books and journals.
Svetlana Mintcheva joined NCAC after years of academic teaching and research on post World War II art and literature. Having spent a large part of her academic career analyzing provocative art and its socio-political contexts, she is happy to be on the front lines protecting the coexistence of a diversity of voices in the cultural sphere. Svetlana has published and presented multiple papers on contemporary art and writing — most recently, she co-edited Censoring Culture: Contemporary Threats to Free Expression (2006, The New Press). She curated the 2007 exhibition "Filth, Treason, Blasphemy?: Museums and Censorship," at the McCormick Tribune Freedom Museum in Chicago, IL and conceived "Exposing the Censor Within," a traveling interactive public art installation, which opened in California in March of 2007.
An academic and an activist, Mintcheva has taught literature and critical theory at the University of Sofia, Bulgaria and at Duke University, from which she received her Ph.D. in critical theory in 1999. She currently teaches part-time at New York University. Her academic research and writing focus on postmodern literature and aesthetic provocations as well as issues in censorship and ethics.
Andy DiBella oversees all aspects of the organization's fundraising. He joined NCAC in 2013 with a decade of experience in nonprofit development and a love of lit, film, free speech and the occasional nude. Prior to NCAC, he ran successful fundraising campaigns for affordable housing, homeless and arts organizations in Los Angeles. Andy received his BA in English and Psychology from the University of Notre Dame.
Peter Hart is NCAC's Communications Director. He is graduate of Rutgers University. For 15 years he worked at the national media watch group FAIR, where he wrote numerous articles and co-hosted the nationally syndicated radio program CounterSpin. He has appeared on dozens of television and radio programs and spoken at campuses and community groups around the country.
Youth Free Expression Program Manager
Sarah Hoffman has more than 16 years of human rights advocacy experience on both domestic and international issues. Prior to joining NCAC, Sarah coordinated PEN American Center’s Freedom to Write Program, fighting for the free expression rights of individuals across the globe, specifically advocating on behalf of writers and journalists who had been imprisoned or persecuted for their work. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science with a minor in History from Rutgers College, where she focused on human rights and international relations. She is co-author of PEN’s seminal report, Creativity and Constraint in Today’s China.
Senior Consultant, Youth Free Expression Program
Austin Dacey comes to NCAC with 15 years of experience in the NGO sector as a specialist in freedom of inquiry, conscience, and expression. As a former representative to the United Nations for the Center for Inquiry and the Copenhagen-based Freemuse: The World Forum on Music and Censorship, he has made contributions to the Human Rights Council and the Universal Periodic Review. His writings have appeared in numerous publications including USA Today, Salon, and the New York Times, which ran his 2006 op-ed "Believing in Doubt." He is the author The Secular Conscience: Why Belief Belongs in Public Life and The Future of Blasphemy: Speaking of the Sacred in an Age of Human Rights. In 2010 he created The Impossible Music Sessions, a forum in New York City for banned music from around the world which was featured by the Wall Street Journal, BBC World Service and NPR. He holds a Ph.D. in applied ethics and social philosophy and has taught ethics at Polytechnic Institute of NYU.
Taryn Decker is the Administrative Assistant for NCAC. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree in American Studies from Goucher College.
Finance & Administration