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Alumnus William Messenger to deliver Constitution Day Lecture on Sept. 16 as part of George Washington Forum

Ohio University alumnus William Messenger will give a Constitution Day Lecture titled, “Can Free Speech be Compelled? The First Amendment and Speech Rights,” at 7:30 p.m. Monday, Sept. 16 in Galbreath Chapel.

Messenger is a staff attorney at the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation. He earned his bachelor’s in business administration from Ohio University in 1997 and his J.D. from George Washington University in 2001. 

He has litigated nearly 100 cases, including more than a dozen at the Appellate-level, on behalf of NRWLD Foundation-aided employees and other individuals. His cases defend workers’ freedom from compulsory unionism and focus on the First Amendment and other constitutional rights.

He has argued twice before the U.S. Supreme Court. In 2014, he successfully argued Harris v. Quinn, securing a ruling that requiring homecare providers to pay union fees violated the First Amendment. Four years later, he also briefed and successfully argued Janus v. AFSCME, in which the Supreme Court ruled that non-union government workers cannot be required to pay union fees as a condition of employment.

Messenger's lecture, which is sponsored by the George Washington Forum, is free and open to the public and all are welcome to attend. This event receives support from the Jack Miller Center through a grant from the Thomas W. Smith Foundation.