Common Cause will honor activist and actor Sam Waterston, introduce its new board chairman Robert Reich and hear from journalist/commentator Bill Moyers at the organization’s 40th anniversary gala Wednesday evening at the Mayflower Hotel in Washington DC.
More than 400 supporters, including current and former members of Congress, Common Cause past presidents, current and past National Governing Board members and reform activists from across the country are marking the anniversary of one of the largest and oldest grassroots organizations with a two-day reform conference that begins today in Washington, followed by the gala.
“It is clear that our mission – to reinvent open, honest and accountable government that serves the public interest – is as important today as it was when John Gardner founded Common Cause in 1970,” said Common Cause President and CEO Bob Edgar.
Reich, former Labor Secretary under President Bill Clinton, will be formally introduced as the new chairman of Common Cause’s National Governing Board. He replaces interim chair Martha Tierney, a Denver attorney who will now serve as vice chair.
Waterston, perhaps best known for playing prosecutor Jack McCoy on Law and Order, has been active in helping Common Cause and Public Campaign lobby to reduce the influence of special interest money in politics. He will receive the John Gardner Lifetime Achievement Award.
Moyers will deliver remarks on the “state of the nation,” and former US Sen. Tim Wirth (D-CO) and his wife, Wren Wirth, will both be honored with the Archibald Cox Lifetime Achievement Award. The late civil rights pioneer Dorothy Height, who was a member of the first Common Cause national governing board, will also be honored.