The Davis Levin First Amendment Conference (FAC), a project of the American Civil Liberties Union of Hawai‘i Foundation, began in 1997 with grants from the Robert M. Rees Trust & the law firm of Davis Levin Livingston, and perpetuated through the generosity of the Davis Levin Livingston Charitable Foundation. It is named for attorneys Mark S. Davis & Stanley E. Levin for their work defending the First Amendment in Hawai‘i.  The FAC offers a lively discussion between prominent national/international thinkers – often of divergent and controversial views – to foster awareness about the freedoms guaranteed by the Bill of Rights.

The event is public and students, in particular, are encouraged to attend. The event is priced affordably (under $10 per person) and scholarships are available. Check in advance about whether cameras or recording devices are permitted (varies due to speaker requirements). For more information, contact the ACLU-HI "Know Your Rights Line": (808) 522-5906. Toll-free from the Neighbor islands: 1-877-544-5906.

Speakers are chosen by the FAC Committee. Your ideas for speakers are welcome!

phone: 808.522.5906
write: P.O. Box 3410, Honolulu HI 96801

Past First Amendment Conferences:

Edward Snowden and Ben Wizner. NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden appeared live via video link from Moscow, Russia. The conversation, titled "Can Democracy Survive Secrecy?" was held in the Hawai'i Convention Centerʻs Kālakaua Ballroom on Valentineʻs Day, 2/14/15. The event sold out. In a first for the FAC, this event was also generously livestreamed statewide by all four Community Media Centers (‘Olelo, Na Leo of Hawai‘i, Hōike and Akaku using the Unitersity of Hawai‘i Interactive Video Service (HITS)). Questions via Twitter shown on screen made this the first truly statewide and interactive FAC. FREE, closed-caption DVDs of this event available to the public, please inquire.

Daniel and Patricia Ellsberg. "Pentagon Papers" whistleblower and "Wikileaks" advocates talked about the Vietnam and Iraq wars, national security and the effects of out-of-control government secrecy with Dean Aviam Soifer of the William S. Richardson School of Law. Archived on ‘Olelo -

Kenneth Starr, President, Baylor University and former  independent counsel. in a conversation with Nadine Strossen, National ACLU President. Held at the Hilton Hawaiian Village Coral Ballroom.

Justice Antonin Scalia, U.S. Supreme Court, in a conversation with Nadine Strossen, National ACLU President. Held at the Japanese Cultural Center.

Ralph Reed, Republican political consultant, former Executive Director & co-founder of the Christian Coalition, in a conversation with Nadine Strossen, National ACLU President. Held at Punahou School.

Jay Sekulow, General Counsel of the American Center for Law & Justice (ACLJ), in a conversation with Nadine Strossen, National ACLU President. Held at Tenney Theater, St. Andrews Priory.