Jeff and Margaret Binkley founded Maura’s Voice in the wake of the November 2018 shooting at a Tallahassee, Florida Hot Yoga studio that took the life of their daughter Maura, then a 21-year-old senior at Florida State University. This shooting was a crime of hate committed by a misogynist member of the incel subculture with a long history of abusive and criminal behavior toward women. FSU Medical School Professor Dr. Nancy Van Vessem was also lost, and four other women were wounded in the attack. The victims were targeted for no other reason than being women.
In the aftermath of this tragedy Jeff and Margaret are working to honor Maura’s legacy through addressing hatred and violence in our society based on the premise that: Research + Education + Engagement = Change. To put the premise into practice, Maura’s Voice supports: academic and legal research focused on hate crimes and prevention of violence against women and girls through the Maura’s Voice Fund for Research (MVFR) at Florida State University; initiatives to educate the public, policy makers and media on effective policy alternatives; and programs to promote civic engagement by the young women of Maura’s generation.
The Eradicating Hate Global Summit was both eye-opening and empowering. To have so many experts in the field of countering hate, all there sharing their expertise, working towards practical and real world solutions, was incredibly unique. It is this focus on meaningful conversations, answers, and solutions that makes Eradicating Hate so incredibly important. The spread of hate is a wicked problem, and the way Eradicating Hate approaches it is how we are going to solve it.