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Midland University, President
Email Ben Sasse
Ben Sasse was elected the 15th president of the 127-year-old Midland University in October 2009. At the age of 37, he became one of the youngest chief executives in American higher education. He assumed office in March and will be formally inaugurated on December 10, 2010.
Before coming to Midland, Dr. Sasse served in multiple senior roles in both government and corporate America. Nominated by President Bush and unanimously confirmed by the Democratic Senate as U.S. Assistant Secretary of Health and Human Services, Sasse led policy, strategic planning, and research functions at the federal government’s largest agency from 2007 to 2009. He focused especially on the Food and Drug Administration, Medicare, Medicaid, and the unsustainability of national entitlement spending. His research on the politics and economics of American healthcare looks at efforts to modernize payment systems, to migrate from “paying for more” to “paying for better” in ways that will stimulate entrepreneurial innovation from doctors, hospitals, and adjacent industries.
Sasse began his career with the Boston Consulting Group and has advised a wide variety of organizations at moments of strategic crisis – working with airlines, utilities, manufacturers, the Department of Homeland Security, the FBI, the Federal Bureau of Prisons, and the government of Iraq. He remains active on several boards and has advised private equity clients on health sector strategy.
Sasse holds visiting-scholar status in economics at the Brookings Institution in Washington, DC, and a fellowship at the Center for Politics and Governance at the University of Texas. He has held academic appointments at Yale University and at the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas. Previously, he served as a chief of staff in the U.S. House of Representatives and as the chief of staff of the Office of Legal Policy, the internal think-tank of the U.S. Department of Justice.
Trevecca Nazarene University
Email James Schut
James Schut Vitae
Dr. Schut is the Associate Professor of Graduate Psychology at Trevecca Nazarene University. He was previously Senior Program Evaluator Centerstone, lead evaluator on two federal projects funded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), including a Child Mental Health Initiative (a system of care project for a rural Tennessee county) and a statewide suicide prevention project (with separate enhanced evaluation funding from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention).
Email Buster Smith | Buster G. Smith Vitae | Publications
Buster G. Smith is an Assistant Professor at Catawba College, Salisbury, NC. He earned his B.A. from Middlebury College in 2003 and his M.A. and Ph.D. in sociology from Baylor University in 2009. His dissertation examined the relationship between Buddhism and the sociology of religion, by examining the ways in which the study of American Buddhism can inform the theories of the sociology of religion, as well as applying the techniques and methodologies of sociology to this particular topic. He was a post-doctoral fellow at ISR from 2009-2011 where his work involved the analysis of the Gallup World Poll to determine the current state of religion in the world as well as the way in which religion interacts with other societal and individual characteristics.
Email Matthew Stanford
Matt Stanford Vitae
Dr. Matthew S. Stanford is professor of psychology, neuroscience, and biomedical studies at Baylor University where he serves as the director of the doctoral program in psychology. He received his Ph.D. in Neuroscience from Baylor in 1992. After graduating from Baylor he completed a post-doctoral fellowship in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the University of Texas Medical Branch. Prior to coming to Baylor in 2003 he was a faculty
The University of Edinburgh
School of Divinity
Email Brian Stanley
Dr. Stanley is a a Professor of World Christianity and Director of the Centre for the Study of Christianity in the Non WesternWorld at the University of Edinburgh. He received his Ph.D., M.A., and B.A. degrees from the University of Cambridge in England, where he was a Fellow of St Edmund’s College and Director of the Henry Martyn Centre for the Study of Mission and World Christianity. He has experience teaching in the areas of mission studies, world Christianity, and modern church history. He was director of the North Atlantic Missiology Project and its successor, the Currents in World Christianity Project from 1996 until 2001.
Essentials in Education, Chairman
PEI Funds, Managing Director
Email Chuck Stetson
Chuck Stetson is Chairman and CEO of Essentials in Education (EIE), a non-profit educational publisher that seeks to enrich education.
In its first project, EIE has changed the nation’s mind on teaching about the Bible in under two years through the release of the first national research of high school English teachers and university English professors who virtually unanimously supported teaching about the Bible as critical for understanding English literature. Dr. Stetson co-authored the first textbook in the last thirty years on the Bible – The Bible and Its Influence – which is now being taught in over 357 schools in 43 states.
A second project has been a documentary – THE BETTER HOUR: The Legacy of William Wilberforce – which was broadcast nationally in February 2008 during Black History month on national public television. It is available on PBS Home Video through Amazon.com and Netflix.
Email Ryan Streeter
Ryan Streeter is Editor of ConservativeHome, a web site focused on the future of conservatism in America, and he is also a Distinguished Visiting Fellow and Director of Fiscal Studies at the Sagamore Institute in Indianapolis. Previously a senior fellow at Legatum Institute, Streeter has written on a range of topics such as the nature of prosperity globally and locally, entrepreneurship, and the private sector’s role in solving public problems. He was co-director of The Legatum Prosperity Index, a global assessment of economic growth and well-being and has conducted surveys of entrepreneurs in emerging economies. Prior to joining Legatum, Streeter was vice president of Civic Enterprises, a public policy development firm in Washington, D.C., where he provided a wide range of research, analysis, and public communication services to a diverse group of clients, including the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, The Heritage Foundation, and the Urban Land Institute. Streeter also served as Special Assistant to President George W. Bush for domestic policy, in which capacity he managed the development of policy on a range of issues such as poverty, civil society, global health, housing, human services, and health care. He was also a research fellow at the Hudson Institute and top aide to former Indianapolis mayor Stephen Goldsmith. He holds a Ph.D. in political philosophy from Emory University.
Email Anna Xiao Dong Sun
Anna Sun is Assistant Professor of Sociology and Asian Studies at Kenyon College.
Anna Sun’s teaching and research interests include sociology of knowledge, sociology of religion, social theory, and sociology of East Asia. In 2003-04 she was a Mellon Dissertation Fellow at the Institute for Historical Research at the University of London, and in 2005-06 she was a Marilyn Yarbrough Dissertation Fellow at Kenyon College. She received her Ph.D. in sociology from Princeton University in 2008.
Non-Resident Senior Fellow
Editor, IJRR Journal
Email William Swatos, Jr.
William Swatos Vitae
Dr. William H. Swatos, Jr. is Senior Fellow at ISR and Managing Editor of the Interdisciplinary Journal of Research on Religion, as well as Executive Officer of the Association for the Sociology of Religion and of the Religious Research Association. He received his M.A. and Ph.D. in sociology, with honors in social theory, from the University of Kentucky and also earned the M.Div. degree summa cum laude from the Episcopal Theological Seminary in Kentucky. Dr. Swatos is author, co-author, editor, or co-editor of over twenty books including the Encyclopedia of Religion and Society and with Kevin J. Christiano and Peter Kivisto, the widely used textbook Sociology of Religion: Contemporary Developments.