Staff and Advisors

Our leaders pioneered the non-profit sector's defense of free enterprise in the public interest. Since its founding in the American Bicentennial year of 1976, the Center has raised public awareness and grassroots support for the American free enterprise system. With equal vigor, the Center has confronted and exposed its opponents. Following the vision of our Founding Fathers, the Center's leaders know that the combination of a democratic form of government and a capitalistic economy gives Americans unprecedented opportunity. Our leaders know that the spirit of CAN DO!, the urge toward innovation and improvement, and the basic goodness of the American free enterprise system is worth defending. In this era of challenges to our democratic rights and the free enterprise system, we know that determination and persistence is essential to America's survival. After the events of September 11, 2001, our vision has taken on even greater meaning. The Center for the Defense of Free Enterprise has been the cutting edge in non-profit defense of the for-profit economy for twenty-five years, and today shines brightly among the many organizations that have come to stand beside us.

Alan M. Gottlieb, President

Alan M. Gottlieb has been President of the Center since its founding in 1976. Alan is a Nuclear Engineering graduate of the University of Tennessee and attended the Institute on Comparative Political Economic Systems at Georgetown University. Alan was born in Los Angeles, California in 1947 and lived there until age 10 when his parents "kidnapped" him to New York City (their home town). He remained there until the legal age of 18 when he escaped to Knoxville, Tennessee to attend college. His college ties remain strong as he is currently a member of the University of Tennessee Alumni Association.Alan is an active member of the Outdoor Writers Association of America. Alan edited the book, The Wise Use Agenda: The Citizen's Guide to Environmental Resource Issues and co-authored Trashing the Economy: How Runaway Environmentalism is Wrecking America. In addition, Alan is President of Merril Associates, a nationally recognized direct response advertising agency.

Alan is listed in Who's Who in America. He currently resides in Bellevue, Washington with his wife Julie and daughters Amy, Merril, Alexis, and son Andrew. He holds Honorable Discharges from the New York National Guard, Washington State National Guard and the United States Army.

Ron Arnold, Executive Vice President

Ron Arnold has been Executive Vice President of the Center since 1984. Honored as the "Father of the Wise Use Movement," Ron has gained wide recognition as an effective fighter for individual liberties, property rights and limited government. His projects have been covered by all major media and the magazines of every major environmental group.

Ron is a veteran journalist who has turned in more than 300 assignments for dozens of trade magazines. His 8-part series The Environmental Battle earned the American Business Press Editorial Achievement Award for best magazine series of 1981. His 1983 investigative report for Reason magazine on EcoTerrorism remains the classic in the field. Ron wrote the authorized biography of James Watt and his tenure as Secretary of the Interior (At the Eye of the Storm: James Watt and the Environmentalists). Ron is the author of 7 books, has edited 8 others, and founded The Free Enterprise Press in 1987 to create an outlet for important free enterprise authors.

Ron is listed in Who's Who in America. He is the owner of a consulting firm, Northwoods Studio. Ron resides with his wife Janet in Bellevue, Washington. They have three married daughters.

Paul Driessen, Senior Policy Advisor

Paul Driessen, APR, Esquire, is principal of Global-Comm Partners, a Northern Virginia public relations firm specializing in energy and environmental public policy issues, and a senior fellow for the Atlas Economic Research Foundation, Committee for a Constructive Tomorrow (CFACT) and Frontiers of Freedom Institute.

His 25 years' experience includes tenures with the U.S. Senate, Department of the Interior, an energy trade association, an international think tank, and a government and public relations consulting firm. He has published articles and opinion pieces on energy policy, global warming, public land management, onshore and offshore petroleum operations, waste management and other topics. He's also written many articles and professional papers on marine life associated with offshore oil platforms, led scuba diving expeditions to study and film marine life beneath California and Louisiana rigs, and produced a video documentary on the subject. Paul also served as editor of Nick Nichols' book, Rules for Corporate Warriors: How to fight and survive attack group shakedowns. His ground-breaking book Eco-Imperialism: Green Power Black Death was published by Free Enterprise Press.
Paul holds a BA in geology and field ecology from Lawrence University, a JD from the University of Denver College of Law, and an Accreditation in Public Relations from the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA). He is editor of PRSA's National Capital Chapter newsletter.

Nick Nichols, Senior Fellow

Nick is the retired Chairman and CEO of Nichols-Dezenhall Communications Management Group, Ltd., a firm he founded in 1987, specializing in crisis management and risk communications with an emphasis on biotechnology, energy, food, drug, product safety and environmental controversies.

During 2003-2004, Nick developed and taught interdisciplinary, graduate level Crisis Management and Risk Communications courses for Johns Hopkins University. He is a guest lecturer on crisis management and risk communications at Washington, D.C. area universities.
Nick is a widely recognized expert on the topics of crisis management, media and government relations, eco-terrorism, the "precautionary principle," and the political influence of non-governmental organizations (NGOs).

He is a featured speaker at meetings, seminars and national conferences of state and federal legislators, government officials, international and domestic trade associations, corporate executives, and public policy groups including: the American Legislative Exchange Council, the State Legislative Leaders Foundation, the Competitive Enterprise Institute, and the CATO Institute.

Nick has appeared on television network news programs including ABC's Nightline, NBC's The Today Show and the CBS Evening News, and participated as a guest expert on numerous talk shows.

Nick Nichols is author of the book, "Rules for Corporate Warriors," published in October 2001, and has written numerous articles as well as corporate publications that define and examine crisis management strategies and media relations tactics.

Jon Reisman, Senior Scholar

Jon Reisman is an associate professor of economics and public policy at the University of Maine at Machias, where he teaches a variety of courses including Environmental Policy and Political Correctness in American Society. He has a B.A. in economics and environmental studies from Colby College, an M.A. in economics from Brown University and an M.A. in public policy and management from the University of Southern Maine.

Reisman worked for Gov. Angus King in 1995 getting rid of federally mandated car testing in Maine. Upon returning to rural Downeast Maine, he led the effort opposing the endangered species listing of Atlantic salmon. In 1998 he was the GOP congressional nominee in Maine's sprawling 2nd district.

Reisman developed his first-in-the-nation "Political Correctness in America" class after Maine's environmental community tried to have him censored by the state Attorney General and Governor in response to his actions opposing the salmon listing. The course is now offered on the web. Reisman's home page is

Marita Noon, Senior Advisor
marita @

Marita Noon is executive director of Citizens Alliance for Responsible Energy (CARE), based in Albuquerque, New Mexico. She came to the leadership of CARE from a career as a writer, with 19 books published under a pseudonym, and as president of a communications company.

Marita has built CARE into an influential networking center on energy issues, bringing together an array of academic experts, policy analysts, non-profit executives, and industry leaders who work together for realistic solutions to the nation's energy supply issues, including experts in coal, oil and gas, nuclear, solar, wind, and biofuels.

In addition to organizing an annual Student Speech Contest to bring young people into the energy debate, Marita has staged presentations by notables including ABC NEWS correspondent John Stossel, and CDFE Senior Policy Advisor Paul Driessen, among others. Marita routinely takes CARE's message to industry leaders with appearances at a wide variety of conferences, trade shows, and media events. She is also active in public policy issues, presenting testimony to state and federal agencies and organizing citizen protests against those who work to reduce America's energy supply. She has profiled particularly pernicious groups in a section of CARE's website, Energy Killers. Her expertise in networking citizens, academics, policymakers, and industry leaders has become invaluable to the growing movement to get more energy from American soil, promoting independence from unstable foreign sources.

Alan Caruba, Adjunct Scholar

In 1990, Mr. Caruba founded The National Anxiety Center, using both humor and hard facts to counter the environmental movement's opposition to the use of all pesticides, its global warming claims, and its agenda to undermine property rights.

A popular guest on radio and television, Mr. Caruba was most recently on the Fox News Channel discussing the rapid spread of the West Nile Fever due to the environmental movement's opposition to the use of pesticides to suppress the nation's mosquito population.

A former professional journalist, Mr. Caruba, 65, is a veteran public relations counselor whose firm, The Caruba Organization, is headquartered in Maplewood, NJ where he resides. He has authored several books and has been a contributor to numerous trade and consumer magazines over his long career.

In addition to serving as the Communications Director for the American Policy Center, a grassroots think tank, headquartered in Warrenton, Virginia, Mr. Caruba also serves on the American Policy Foundation's Board of Directors. Mr. Caruba is a member of the American Society of Journalists and Authors, the Society of Professional Journalists, the National Association of Science Writers, and is a charter member of the National Book Critics Circle.

The National Anxiety Center maintains an Internet site at where Mr. Caruba's column is posted weekly. In addition, Mr. Caruba maintains as the site of his famed media spoof and clearinghouse for information about boredom, along with, his monthly report on the best in new fiction and non-fiction books.

Watch Ron Arnold on Fox News

Ron is available to speak at your next convention or seminar.  Call 425-455-5038

Become a fan of the Center on

Latest Report Releases:

Subverting Development:
   America's Industrial Strength at Risk
The national environmental policy act has degenerated from a high-minded law to promote productive harmony into a weapon to stop all development.
►Autocrats and Activists
How Hugo Chavez and Fidel Castro use Venezuela’s Citgo Oil to mobilize U.S. leftists to subvert free enterprise at home.

Latest Book Releases:

Use arrows to scroll through
and click to make your selection