D.J. is an American writer and public speaker who talks about issues at the nexus of science, critical thinking, secularism, religion and the paranormal.
He is president of the James Randi Educational Foundation. Until the end of 2009, he was Vice President and Director of Outreach Programs at the Center for Inquiry, a “think tank that advances science, reason and secular values in public affairs and at the grassroots.” He is also contributing editor of Skeptical Inquirer magazine, and lectures throughout North America at colleges and universities.
He edited On the Beauty of Science, about the worldview and life’s work of Nobel Laureate Herbert Hauptman. He formerly hosted the nationally popular radio show and podcast Point of Inquiry which features leading thinkers in the sciences, skepticism and humanism, and now hosts For Good Reason, a similar interview program. He is a former professional magician and “psychic entertainer.” D.J. attended the Worldwide Church of God in the St. Louis areas for a number of years, beginning as a teenager, and later attended Ambassador College, which was sponsored by the church.
D.J. first became involved in the Center for Inquiry, a rationalist think-tank in Buffalo, New York, through one of its affiliated organizations, the Council for Secular Humanism, while he was studying as a graduate student at Washington University. He was involved in a student freethought group there called WULF, the Washington University League of Freethinkers.
D.J. also lectures about the intersection of magic and skepticism, having been involved with both movements and enterprises for years: he formerly worked as a professional magician who did shows for corporations and other private clients.
On December 7, 2009, D.J. was appointed President of the James Randi Educational Foundation, replacing astronomer and Discover Magazine blogger Phil Plait. He assumed the post on January 1, 2010.