Chris Rufer, Board Member since May 2007, Chair since April 2017
Chris Rufer (California) founded The Morning Star Company in 1970 as a one-truck owner-operator, hauling tomatoes to other canneries. Today, Morning Star accounts for over 25% of the California processing tomato production, supplying 40% of the U.S. ingredient tomato paste and diced tomato markets.
Chris was an early supporter of Marshall Fritz and has helped the Advocates for more than 30 years. He desires to significantly increase the influence of the Advocates through new outreach programs and efforts. Chris is also dedicated to finding more advocates of self-government to advance human well-being for all people and believes the Advocates is best positioned to bring in new folks to the liberty movement.
John Guido, Board Member since December 2016
John Guido graduated from California Polytechnic State University with a degree in Agricultural Business and started his career with The Morning Star Packing Company. The libertarian DNA behind the self-management culture at Morning Star was the catalyst for John’s early passion for libertarian social values. He quickly incorporated these ideas into all areas of his life, realizing them to be the most respectful and peaceful way to promote human flourishing and help communities solve today’s most difficult problems. After 15 rewarding years working with agricultural and food enterprises, he decided to channel his energy full time into organizations and ventures that advocate libertarian social values. John has taken a leading role with The Foundation for Harmony and Prosperity, facilitating Strategic Initiatives and External Relations. John also serves on the Board of Directors of The Bastiat Society and Spark Freedom.
Karrie Rufer, Board Member since December 2016
Karrie Rufer has worked for The Morning Star Company and the Self-Management Institute since 2010. She received her B.A. in Economics from Saint Mary’s College and her M.A. in Economics from San Jose State University. Karrie is an ardent supporter of the libertarian ideals of individual liberty, free markets, and peace.
Marshall Fritz (1943-2008), Founder and Board Member Emeritus
Marshall Fritz founded the Advocates in 1985 and remained on the Board until his death. He is also the creator of the world-famous “World’s Smallest Political Quiz.” In 1994, Marshall founded the Alliance for the Separation of School & State, which works to end state, federal and local government involvement in K-12 schools. He was almost single-handedly responsible for bringing the phrase “separation of school and state” into the vernacular.
Previously, he served as president of the Pioneer Christian Academy and as executive director of the Libertarian Party of California. Marshall began his career at IBM in computer sales and design.
Marshall was born in California in 1943, and earned a Bachelor’s of Arts from California State University Fullerton in 1964. A devout Catholic, he and his wife of 44 years, Joan, lived in Fresno, CA. They had four grown children and a dozen grandchildren.
George Schwappach (1953-2011), Board Member Emeritus
George Schwappach was on the Advocates Board since its founding and boasted of being the first Advocates member and supporter. He served as chair from 1990 to 1992 and was founder and first president of the Advocates’ initial chapter, “Chapter One,” in Ohio.
He was a past chairman of the San Joaquin County, Calif. (1982-84) and Taylor County, Texas (1998-2001) Libertarian Party, was campaign manager for Debra Monde’s bid for U.S. House (Texas 17th District) in 2000, and was a Libertarian candidate for State Representative in 2002. George was proud to tell people that he met Debra Monde using the Quiz at a dance hall in Columbus, Ohio.
He and Debra were the parents of four private-schooled sons, and they finalized their church wedding in October, 1989 with an official marriage license on both their parents’ anniversaries, July 6th (2003). Debra Monde passed away in 2005, and George is on record as being the first known person to hand out the Quiz at a funeral service.
Professionally, George worked as a CFO, COO and President of various real estate development companies from coast to coast.
Hardy Macia (1969-2013), Board Member Emeritus
An 8th generation Vermonter, Hardy became involved in the Libertarian Party of Vermont in the late 1990s. He was heavily involved of the Free State Project after moving to New Hampshire. A libertarian, activist, and candidate, Hardy lived a life for liberty. He served on the board for the Advocates for several years. In 2012, while running for Congress, he was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma and battled it for nine months before succumbing to it in May 2013.