John Tomasi of Brown University named inaugural President of Heterodox Academy
New York, NY – Heterodox Academy (HxA), a non-partisan organization dedicated to strengthening institutions of higher education by advocating for viewpoint diversity, open inquiry, and constructive disagreement on campuses and in classrooms, has selected political theorist and longtime Brown University professor John Tomasi as its inaugural President.
“We set an extremely high bar for the ideal candidate, and John Tomasi has exceeded our highest expectations,” said Chair of the Search Committee and HxA Board Member Dr. Jeffrey S. Flier. “He is a highly respected academic with a passion for academic discourse, he has demonstrated sustained commitment to the values of HxA, and he possesses a track record of successfully envisioning and promoting those values in the university setting. John is the right person, at the right time, for HxA and for higher education.”
Tomasi joins HxA at a pivotal time for colleges and universities. “Heterodox Academy fills a unique role in promoting the ideological diversity and rigorous inquiry without which universities cannot fulfill their core truth-seeking mission. Now, more than ever, we need vibrant and widely trusted universities,” said Nadine Strossen, former President of the ACLU and member of HxA’s Advisory Council, “A scholar and educator as distinguished as John Tomasi will greatly enhance the effectiveness of HxA, and therefore of universities.”
Tomasi comes to HxA from Brown University, where he is currently Romeo Elton 1843 Professor of Natural Theology, and Founder and Director of the Political Theory Project. During his more than 25 years at Brown, he was awarded two prizes for excellence in undergraduate teaching. He has also held positions at Princeton, Stanford, and Harvard.
“John’s career as a scholar and teacher make him ideally suited to be the first president of our now 5,300-member organization,” Jonathan Haidt, HxA Co-Founder and Chair of the Board of Directors.
Reflecting on his decision to leave his tenured position in favor of joining the HxA team, Tomasi said, “I am honored to have this chance to lead HxA into its next phase of its growth and impact. Our mission of promoting open inquiry and viewpoint diversity on campuses is essential in light of the daunting challenges currently facing our system of higher education. I am eager to begin.”
Tomasi will begin his tenure at HxA on January 1, 2022.
Heterodox Academy is a nonpartisan 501c3 collaborative of 5,300+ professors, educators, administrators, staff, and students who are committed to enhancing the quality of research and education by promoting open inquiry, viewpoint diversity, and constructive disagreement in institutions of higher learning.
Director of Communications, Heterodox Academy
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