Jay Richards, Ph.D., to Join Heritage as Senior Research Fellow

Jay Richards, Ph.D., to Join Heritage as Senior Research Fellow

Jun 18, 2021 2 min read

WASHINGTON—The Heritage Foundation announced today that Jay Richards, Ph.D., will join the organization as the William E. Simon senior research fellow in Heritage’s DeVos Center for Religion and Civil Society.

Richards comes to Heritage from Catholic University, where he served as a research assistant professor in the Busch School of Business and the academic content lead for the Tucson project at The Catholic University of America. He also is a senior fellow at the Discovery Institute and executive editor of The Stream.

At Heritage, Richards will focus on protecting life, marriage, religious liberty, and renewing civil society. He begins his new role Aug. 2.

In recent years, he served as a distinguished fellow at the Institute for Faith, Work & Economics, contributing editor of The American at the American Enterprise Institute, and research fellow and director of Acton Media at the Acton Institute. He last was at Heritage as a visiting fellow from 2009 to 2010.

Richards has written extensively on the social and economic foundations of American liberty, including New York Times bestsellers “Indivisible” (2012), “Infiltrated” (2013), and “Money, Greed, and God,” which won a 2010 Templeton Enterprise Award. His most recent book, co-authored with William Briggs and Douglas Ax, is “The Price of Panic: How the Tyranny of Experts Turned a Pandemic into a Catastrophe.”

Richards has worked on a broad range of issues, including abortion, stem cell research, education, economics, health care, the environment, judicial activism, and marriage. His work has influenced both academic and popular audiences.

He is creator and executive producer of several documentaries, including three that appeared widely on PBS—"The Call of the Entrepreneur,” “The Birth of Freedom,” and “The Privileged Planet.” He has been published in The Harvard Business Review, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Post, The Washington Post, Newsweek, Forbes, and National Review.

Richards lectures widely and has debated the late Christopher Hitchens at Stanford University on evidence for the existence of God, and Bhaskar Sunkara, editor of Jacobin, on socialism.

"I’ve admired the work of The Heritage Foundation for years. In fact, I’ve often relied on the research from Heritage scholars in my own writing,” Richards said. “I’m delighted to be joining the Heritage team at this fraught time in our nation’s history, when there are so many opportunities for conservatives to make a difference.”

“We are delighted that Dr. Richards is joining the Heritage team to help restore faith, family, and freedom,” said Heritage Foundation President Kay C. James. “He will be a terrific complement to our experts on life, marriage, and religious liberty."

“It is an honor to welcome Dr. Richards,” said Emilie Kao, director of Heritage’s DeVos Center for Religion and Civil Society. “Jay has been able to convey the underlying unity of the social and economic principles behind the American experiment in ordered liberty like few other scholars. He is gifted at communicating with diverse audiences and has a proven track record of innovation. He brings thought leadership to both the social and economic challenges facing Americans today and will play an important role in informing sound public policy for tomorrow.”

Richards has a Ph.D., with honors, in philosophy and theology from Princeton Theological Seminary. He also has an M.Div. (Master of Divinity), a Th.M. (Master of Theology), and a B.A. with majors in political science and religion. He lives with his family in the Washington, D.C., metro area.

As the nation’s largest, most broadly supported conservative research and educational institution, The Heritage Foundation has been leading the American conservative movement since our founding in 1973. More than 500,000 dues-paying members support our vision to build an America where freedom, prosperity, opportunity, and civil society flourish.