Over at Talking Philosophy, I've been cautiously positive about the appointment of Edwina Rogers as the new Executive Director of the Secular Coalition for America. We should at least start to see what her priorities are, and how effective she might be, before we write her off over her past work for Republican administrations. Too much gloom could undermine her and be self-fulfilling.
But ... that said, early reports on an interview she recently did with Greta Christina worry me - see my comment on the post. I'd like to think that Rogers is a hired gun ... or better still someone who has been a hired gun in the past but has now reached a time in her life when she wants to commit to a cause that she believes in. Either way, she could be fine in an Executive Director position, which involves professional management, policy development, public relations, etc., skills. It's the sort of position that I understand quite well, and as far as I'm concerned her past associations don't rule out her being able to do this job effectively.
However, if she comes into the job with a narrow understanding of secular government (the kind of narrow understanding that I argue against in Chapter 5, in particular, of Freedom of Religion and the Secular State), then that will skew her priorities and effectiveness. Likewise, if she has severely deluded views about the Republican Party, and is not just being nice about it in public as a lobbying tactic.
This situation needs to be watched carefully. I want to be open-minded, but I feel cautious .... and now more so.