Moments creating a Hispanic Humanist - a typical story that isn't
David Tamayo, President, Hispanic American Freethinkers
This is the real story of a typical Latino immigrant who lived in poverty as a pre-teen and had a greater probability to be in prison than to attend college. Through a series of single-point-of-failure events, or thanks to a random individual here and there, or one “lucky” or “unlucky” instance, he recently found himself starting his PhD at Virginia Tech. This short story starts with extreme religiosity and ends with a true secular skeptic who loves science. This story points to how each one of us can make a significant and absolute difference in the life of someone without us even noticing it. David will point to some things we can do today to create these a “lucky” incidents for someone, especially for someone who belongs to the largest minority group in the U.S., and for someone in an ethnic group who is still openly discriminated in many parts of the country. This story will show that we can all create our own futures, even when the odds are against us. David will conclude by presenting a couple of statistical numbers that will blow your mind and enlighten you on the magnitude of this topic. You will come out of this short presentation empowered with a greater understanding of how secularism in the Latino population is achievable, desirable, and imperative for the future wellbeing of our Nation.
David Tamayo is president and founder of Hispanic American Freethinkers (HAFree). HAFree is the only national Hispanic non-profit 501(c)3 organization in the U.S. that promotes freethought, critical thinking skills, and secularism among the many Latino communities in this country. David has a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science from George Washington University and a Master’s degree in Management of Information Technology from University of Virginia at Charlottesville. He is Vice President of Technology for an engineering firm in Washington, DC. As a member of several secular organizations, David always encourages everyone, especially Hispanics, to join and be active in as many groups as possible and to come out of the closet about lack of supernatural belief. This year so far, David has been asked to speak at many conferences including the Annual American Atheist Convention, American Humanist Association’s annual conference, the West Coast Secular Student Alliance Convention, the North Texas Secular Annual Meeting, the PA Atheists Convention, Skepticon 2014, and several other smaller groups and churches. He has also appeared on the TV show “Road to Reason”, the podcast the Dogma Debate, and others. He is a founding board member of Camp Quest Chesapeake in the Washington, DC area. David has a long track record as a Freemason – you’ll have to ask him if you want to know more – and he is one of the permanent hosts of HAFree’s own Spanish podcast on Latino freethought. If we had to pick two words to describe David it would be: secular educator – he often gives seminars to Hispanic high school students in Northern Virginia about critical thought, questioning of culture, and the future of today's youth.