Upcoming Events

Cybersecurity agenda setting for the 2019 NDAA hosted with the George Mason National Security Institute

02/26/2018 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

What is the NDAA? And why should you care?

Our panel of cybersecurity experts will discuss whether the Defense Department has the tools, infrastructure, and workforce to effectively compete with competitors in cyberspace. Panelists will discuss what, if any, steps Congress could take in supporting Department of Defense’s efforts to bolster its cyber capabilities.

We hope you can join us! Lunch will be provided.


Megan Reiss, Senior National Security Fellow, R Street Institute (moderator)

Jamil Jaffer, Founder of the National Security Institute

Tara Swaminatha, Partner, Squire Patton Boggs

Klon Kitchen, Heritage Foundation Senior Fellow of Technology, National Security and Science; former National Security Advisor for Sen. Ben Sasse

Betsy Cooper, Executive Director, Berkeley Center for Long-Term Cybersecurity

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Occupational hazards: How excessive licensing hurts small business

02/27/2018 @ 10:00 am - 12:00 pm
 The Committee on Small Business Subcommittee on Economic Growth, Tax, and Capital Access will meet for a hearing titled, “Occupational Hazards: How Excessive Licensing Hurts Small Business.”  The hearing is scheduled to begin at 10:00 A.M. on Tuesday, February 27, 2018 in Room 2360 of the Rayburn House Office Building.

This hearing will examine how easing occupational licensing barriers could reduce workforce gaps and regulatory costs for small businesses.

1. Hearing Notice
2. Witness List

Mr. C. Jarrett Dieterle
Senior Fellow
R Street Institute
Washington, DC

Mr. Keith Hall
President and Chief Executive Officer
National Association for the Self-Employed
Annapolis Junction, MD

Mr. Frank Zona
Zona Salons
Norwell, MA
*Testifying on behalf of the Professional Beauty Association

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Driverless Cars

03/02/2018 @ 12:00 pm - 1:30 pm

Join the Federalist Society for a discussion with the following experts on driverless cars:

Victor E. Schwartz

Victor Schwartz is a partner in the Washington, D.C. office of the Kansas City-based law firm of Shook, Hardy & Bacon L.L.P. He chairs the firm’s Public Policy Group, which seeks to be the vanguard of developing public policy issues that will help improve the civil justice system.

Mr. Schwartz has been an advisor for each of the American Law Institute’s (ALI) Restatement (Third) of Torts projects: Products Liability, Apportionment of Liability, and Liability for Physical and Emotional Harm. He is a life member of the ALI.

Prior to entering the full time practice of law, Mr. Schwartz was a professor and dean at the University of Cincinnati College of Law. He currently serves on the College’s Board of Visitors. In 2012, the College established the Professor Victor E. Schwartz Chair in Tort Law.

Mr. Schwartz served at the U.S. Department of Commerce as chair of the Federal Inter-Agency Task Force on Product Liability, and the Federal Inter-Agency Council on Insurance. He was the principal author of the Uniform Product Liability Act and the Federal Risk Retention Act. He received the Secretary of Commerce’s Award for Professional Excellence.

Mr. Schwartz is co-author of the most widely used torts casebook in the United States, Prosser, Wade and Schwartz’s Torts (13th ed. 2015). He is also author of the leading text Comparative Negligence (5th ed. 2010).

Mr. Schwartz has additionally authored over 200 legal publications, which have analyzed almost every major subject of modern tort and civil justice public policy. His articles are frequently cited by both state and federal courts.

Mr. Schwartz has been quoted in publications such as The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, and The New York Times. He has also appeared on Oprah, 60 Minutes, and other leading news programs.

The Legal Times of Washington named Mr. Schwartz one of Washington’s Top 30 “Visionary” lawyers. In 2013, The National Law Journal named Mr. Schwartz one of the 100 most influential lawyers in the United States.

Mr. Schwartz obtained his B.A. summa cum laude from Boston University and J.D. magna cum laude from Columbia Law School. He is a member of the bars of New York, Ohio, and the District of Columbia.

Brent Skorup

Brent Skorup is a Senior Research Fellow in the Technology Policy Program at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University. His research areas include wireless policy, new media regulation, telecommunications, and driverless cars.

He serves on the FCC’s Broadband Deployment Advisory Committee and is the vice chair of the Competitive Access subcommittee. He is also a member of the Arlington County (Va.) Broadband Advisory Committee.

Mr. Skorup has authored pieces for law reviews, National Affairs, The New York Times, The Chicago Tribune, Wired, Reuters, Reason, and elsewhere. He’s appeared as an interview guest for news outlets like C-SPAN, NPR, CBS, and CNBC.

Mr. Skorup has a BA in economics from Wheaton College and a law degree from the George Mason University School of Law, where he was articles editor for the Civil Rights Law Journal. He was a legal clerk at the FCC’s Wireless Telecommunications Bureau and at the Energy and Commerce Committee in the US House of Representatives. Before joining Mercatus, he was the Director of Research at the Information Economy Project, a law and economics research center.

Caleb Watney

Caleb Watney is a technology policy associate at the R Street Institute, where he leads R Street’s work on emerging technologies, including autonomous vehicles, artificial intelligence, drones, robotics and medical tech. In this role, he regularly meets with policymakers, files regulatory comments, writes op-eds and manages the Technology Policy Working Group.

Mr. Watney joined R Street full-time in May 2017. He previously was a graduate research fellow at the Mercatus Center, working with the Technology Policy Program. He previously worked as a policy research consultant for Uber.

He received a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Sterling College and his master’s in economics from George Mason University.


RSVP here.

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EU privacy countdown: What the GDPR regulations mean for your constituents

03/02/2018 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

In May of this year, The European Commission (EC) will issue an expansive set of privacy rules for U.S. companies operating overseas. These rules, otherwise called The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), will require companies across the world to amend their policies and practices to comply with its many regulations. In many ways, the GDPR will become the baseline privacy regime for the Internet. According to PwC, over half of U.S. multinational companies say the GDPR is their top data privacy compliance priority.

But many U.S. policymakers view this new regulation as burdensome and costly, while others view it as a positive step towards a global privacy regime for the Internet. How will the GDPR affect the Privacy Shield and other international agreements with our International partners? This briefing focuses on what the GDPR means for U.S. businesses and the worldwide flow of citizens’ information.


– Kelly DeMarchis Bastide, Partner, Venable (Bio)

– Melanie Bates, Director of Communications, Future of Privacy Forum, Moderator (Bio)

– Aymeric Dupont, Counsellor-Delegation of the European Union to the United States (Bio)

– Mike Godwin, Director of Innovation Policy and General Counsel, Distinguished Senior Fellow, R Street Institute (Bio)


RSVP here

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Red state = clean energy: How market driven clean energy is transforming the Texas electric grid tickets

03/08/2018 @ 12:00 pm - 1:15 pm

This event is co-hosted by the Texas Energy Coalition and The American Conservative.

Thanks to past actions by state leaders including George W. Bush and Rick Perry, Texas is in the midst of a clean energy transition driven primarily by market forces. Over the last 20 years, the deregulation of the Texas electricity market and other initiatives, such as adopting one of the first Renewable Portfolio Standards (RPS) and investing in the Competitive Renewable Energy Zones (CREZ) to bring renewable power to Texas cities, have laid the foundation for today’s market-driven transition away from coal and toward cleaner fuels like natural gas and renewable energy.

What can federal lawmakers learn from the Texas example? Please join us for a discussion of how these trends are playing out in the Texas electric market, how conservative leaders are embracing the economic benefits of clean energy, and what the “Texas story” can teach us about current energy debates in Washington and around the country.

This event is co-sponsored by the R Street Institute, Texas Clean Energy Coalition (TCEC) and The American Conservative.

Lunch will be provided.

Click here to RSVP.


Josiah Neeley, Energy Policy Director, R Street Institute


The Honorable Dale Ross, Mayor, Georgetown, Texas
Conservative Republican mayor who has moved his fast-growing Central Texas city to 100% renewable power

Cheryl Mele, Chief Operating Officer, Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT)
ERCOT manages the flow of electric power to 24 million Texas customers — about 90 percent of the state’s electric load

Elizabeth Lippincott, Executive Director, Texas Clean Energy Coalition (TCEC)
TCEC commissioned groundbreaking research on the market forces driving the transition to natural gas and renewable energy

Kenneth W. Anderson, Jr. former commissioner 2008-17, Public Utility Commission of Texas (PUCT)
Appointed in 2008 by former Governor Rick Perry, Anderson served on the PUCT during the early stages of the clean energy transition

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