The Truth & Transparency Foundation is excited to announce the addition of a new, seven-member volunteer advisory board of the following individuals:
- Kimberly Anderson, AMFT, a marriage and family therapist in California specializing in LGBTQ+ issues
- Timmy Chou, an entrepreneur and founding partner of Spectra Consulting Group
- Tracie Harris, a project manager, secular and social justice activist, and well known speaker and presenter in the secular community
- Jennifer Helsby, lead developer of SecureDrop from the Freedom of the Press Foundation
- Leigh Honeywell, technologist, survivor-advocate, coiner of the Al Capone Theory of Sexual Harassment, and founder of Tall Poppy, a tech startup aimed to combat online harassment
- Trevor Timm, co-founder and Executive Director of the Freedom of the Press Foundation
- Jason Wynne, founder of AvoidJW.org and source to the TTF
Update: In April 2020, Brianna Malcolmson was also added to the Advisory Board.
Update: Jason Wynne was amicably removed from the Advisory Board in July 2020 in wake of a settlement between TTF and Watch Tower.
These advisors will provide the TTF with valuable input as our reporting and operations intersect with their individual areas of expertise. In fact, several of them have been fulfilling their role privately for some time and the relationships are simply being made public, such as those of Honeywell, Timm, and Wynne. More information can be read about each advisor here.
The demand for impact journalism promoting transparency within religious communities and institutions is higher than ever. In the eyes of McKnight and Dodge, the addition of the new advisory board further demonstrates the organization’s long-term commitment for starting and expanding news reporting, public commentary, and criticism related to religious institutions.
“We started out as a scrappy website releasing pay stubs and manuals with little to no context or commentary,” says Dodge of the TTF’s first incarnation, MormonLeaks. “Now we’re digging deeper and breaking stories that have real world affects. Sterling Van Wagenen is in prison because our reporting empowered a survivor to report his misconduct to the police. We want to seize this momentum and feel that these advisors can help us do that.”
Harris expresses her excitement of the TTF’s future, saying, “I first became aware of MormonLeaks when Ethan was a guest on a social justice podcast I co-hosted. It struck me as a fascinating project with stories to tell. When I learned Ethan and Ryan were broadening their effort as ‘Truth & Transparency’, I was excited. When I was asked to participate, I was humbled. I believe in this mission and look forward to supporting their future success.”
Additionally, many readers will likely recall a November 2019 petition launched by the TTF asking Utah lawmakers to remove the States’s clergy exemption from their laws dictating the mandatory reporting of child abuse and neglect. Later, in December 2019, they traveled to California to speak with legislators about the State’s similar exemption and announced a bill proposed by Senator Jerry Hill the following month. Such work will no longer be pursued by the TTF.
“So much of our reporting touches on abuse, an issue where activism is much needed,” says McKnight. “Initially, we felt we could lend a strong voice to help make changes to state laws that would further protect victims of abuse, but after further consideration, we decided that we best serve the public focusing on investigative reporting. We hope that activists everywhere find our content useful as they seek to make communities safer for victims of abuse.”
Finally, in an effort to absolve confusion, the TTF would like to reiterate that the names, brands, and projects MormonLeaks and FaithLeaks will always be an important part of the organization’s history, but they are not actively being used. The change comes in the wake of a decision made in late 2018 by McKnight and Dodge to engage in investigative reporting.
The MormonLeaks and FaithLeaks sites will continue to live as document archives for releases from the TTF until a more sustainable and permanent solution is implemented later in 2020. For more information, please read our FAQ and about pages.
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