Honors College Faculty
Jennifer Frey, Ph.D.
Dean of the Honors College
Matthew Post, Ph.D.
Assistant Dean for Academic Affairs
Chiara Palazzolo, Ph.D.
Rich Lizardo, Ph.D.
Jennifer A. Frey is the inaugural dean of the Honors College at the University of Tulsa, with a secondary appointment as professor of philosophy in the Department of Philosophy & Religion. Her academic research centers around questions of agency and moral psychology, with a special focus on the nature of character of virtue and its relation to accounts of human well-being and flourishing. Previously, she was an associate professor of philosophy at the University of South Carolina, where she was also a Peter and Bonnie McCausland faculty fellow in the College of Arts and Sciences. Prior to her tenure at Carolina, she was a collegiate assistant professor of humanities at the University of Chicago, and a junior fellow of the Society for the Liberal Arts. She earned her Ph.D. in philosophy at the University of Pittsburgh and her B.A. in philosophy and medieval studies (with a classics minor) at Indiana University-Bloomington.
Frey is a faculty fellow at the Institute for Human Ecology at the Catholic University of America, a Newbigin Interfaith Fellow with The Carver Project and Interfaith America, and a member of the Hope in Higher Education project with the John Templeton Foundation. Her academic research is primarily in moral psychology and virtue. She has co-edited a volume titled Self-Transcendence and Virtue with her former colleague Candace Vogler, and she is finishing a volume titled Practical Truth with her husband and colleague, Christopher Frey (forthcoming OUP). A third volume, titled Practical Wisdom, is under contract with Oxford University Press. In 2015, Frey was awarded a multi-million-dollar, interdisciplinary grant from the John Templeton Foundation, titled “Virtue, Happiness, and the Meaning of Life.”
Frey frequently writes more popular essays and book reviews in places like Breaking Ground, First Things, Harper’s, Image, The Point, and the Wall Street Journal. She hosts a philosophy, theology, and literature podcast called Sacred and Profane Love.
Matthew Post is assistant dean for Academic Affairs and applied associate professor of philosophy at The University of Tulsa Honors College.
He helped launch and was the director of the first graduate-level K–12 classical teacher formation program in the U.S. and has founded, developed, supervised, and fundraised for other programs serving education reform. These programs include bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral programs in civics, character education, and educational leadership; alternative certification; programs abroad; a classical lab school; and professional development and curricula for K–12 teachers and schools of character.
Since 2016, the university programs have educated hundreds of students across the U.S., including teachers, school leaders, school network executives, and other professionals who support liberal education. And, from 2019–2022, the professional development team went from serving a handful of schools to over 90 schools nationally and growing.
Post also builds networks to advance and sustain the growth of character education in the liberal arts tradition at the K–12 and higher education levels. His academic writing focuses on key thinkers in the tradition, such as Plato, Cicero, and Hegel, and his field research examines the relationship between school culture and motivation for virtuous conduct in a variety of educational institutions, public and private.
He has spent his career teaching liberal arts and classic texts, having worked in Canada, Japan, and Slovakia in addition to the U.S.
Chiara Palazzolo is a postdoctoral researcher at the Honors College of The University of Tulsa, working with Dean Jennifer Frey. Her background lies in philosophy and music.
Previously, Palazzolo held a post-doctoral researcher position at Roma Tre University. In May 2022, she completed a Ph.D. in philosophy, jointly funded by the University of Roma Tor Vergata and Roma Tre University, under the supervision of Professor Mario De Caro (Roma Tre University & Tufts). Her doctoral thesis, titled “Music as Vocation: Ethics and Role Responsibility of the Interpreter” explored the role responsibility of musical performers and the ontological assumptions underlying such responsibility in Western classical music.
In the spring semester of 2023, Palazzolo taught a course on “Ethics of Visual and Performing Arts” at the Department of DAMS at Roma Tre University. She has been a member of Aretai – Center on Virtues and SIFM (Italian Society of Moral Philosophy) since 2022. In January and February of 2023, she undertook a research period at the University of Glasgow under the supervision of Professor Glen Pettigrove. And, In 2019, she spent a study period at the University of Maryland under the guidance of Professor Jerrold Levinson. Since 2018, Palazzolo has been a teaching assistant in moral philosophy at the Department of Philosophy at Roma Tre University.
Chiara Palazzolo obtained her bachelor’s degree (2013) and master’s degree (2017) in philosophy from the University of Parma. In 2014, she graduated in opera singing from the Arrigo Boito Conservatory in Parma.
Her research interests encompass contemporary virtue ethics, music education, aesthetics, philosophy of music, professional ethics of music, music psychology, and moral psychology. Palazzolo consistently participates in international conferences on these areas and organizes culturalmusical events related to her interests and competences.
Rich Lizardo is a postdoctoral fellow in the Honors College who focuses on the history of early-modern Spain. He received his B.A. in history at Yale University and his Ph.D. at the University of Pennsylvania. His research interests include the study of poverty, charity, and poor laws; theories and practices of punishment; Spanish empire and colonialism; national, cultural, religious, and ethnic identities; and intellectual, religious, and cultural history. Rich has presented conference papers on gendered violence in the laws and literature of Spain’s “Golden Age” of the seventeenth century, on labor and economic reform of the Spanish Enlightenment of the eighteenth century, and on intellectual responses to the “Hispano-American problem” of the nineteenth century.
He has also edited, copyedited, and/or translated (from Spanish and Portuguese into English) academic articles, chapters, and monographs for various scholars. He has served as an historical consultant for a Marvel animated television series. He has coedited a volume on early-modern hospitals, titled Hospitales durante el Antiguo Régimen. Instituciones benéfico-asistenciales, siglos XV–XIX, with Palermo University Press. And he is currently coediting a volume titled The Contractual Monarchy of the Iberian World, c. 1500–1700: Negotiating Power and Status in the Spanish Empire, under contract with Brill Publishing.
Rich’s recently completed dissertation, titled “Worlds of Spanish Poverty: Theory and Practice from the Renaissance to the Enlightenment,” traces the evolution of ideas, images, and institutions that arose to address the problem of widespread poverty in early-modern Spain. His current research projects include two forthcoming chapters: one on religious confraternities run by ethnic minorities in the early-modern Iberian world; another on the role of picaresque literature in seventeenth-century Spanish governance. In addition, Rich plans to spend his fellowship year at The University of Tulsa working in the Spanish Colonial Manuscript Collection at Gilcrease Museum.
Honors College Academic Advisory Board
James Arthur, OBE
Director, Jubilee Centre for Character and Virtues
Randall Curren, Ph.D.
Professor of Philosophy, University of Rochester
David Decosimo, Ph.D.
Director, Boston Univeristy Institute for Philosophy and Religion
Robert P. George, Ph.D.
McCormick Professor of Jurisprudence, Princeton University
Founder & President, Catherine Project
John Inazu, Ph.D.
Sally D. Danforth Distinguished Professor of Law & Religion, Washington University in St. Louis
Roosevelt Montas, Ph.D.
Senior Lecturer, Columbia University
Anna Bonta Moreland, Ph.D.
Director, Villanova University Honors Program
Angel Adams Parham, Ph.D.
Senior Fellow, Institute for Advanced Studies in Culture
Christopher Snyder, Ph.D.
Professor of History, Mississippi State University
Jenna Silber Storey, Ph.D.
Senior Fellow, American Enterprise Institute
Cornel R. West, Ph.D.
Dietrich Bonhoeffer Professor of Philosophy & Christian Practice, Union Theological Seminary
Professor James Arthur is director of the Jubilee Centre for Character and Virtues. James was head of the School of Education 2010-15 and deputy pro-vice-chancellor 2015-19. He was previously editor of the British Journal of Educational Studies for 10 years and holds numerous honorary titles and fellowships in the academe, including honorary professor of the University of Glasgow and honorary research fellow in the University of Oxford. James was made an officer of the British Empire by the Queen in 2018, and in 2020 won the internationally prestigious Expanded Reason Award from the Ratzinger Foundation in the Vatican. He has written widely on the relationship between theory and practice in education, particularly the links between character, virtues, citizenship, religion, and education. James established the Jubilee Centre with Jack Templeton, previously president of the John Templeton Foundation, and the Centre has grown in size, scope, and impact since its launch at the House of Lords in May 2012. James continues to chair the national Society for Educational Studies and has served on many government educational committees as well as the Step Up to Serve Advisory Council chaired by HRH the Prince of Wales (2013-20).
Randall Curren, Ph.D., is an ethicist who works across the boundaries of moral, political, legal, environmental, and educational philosophy, often in ways grounded in his scholarship in ancient Greek philosophy and often collaboratively with colleagues in other disciplines, including law, history, sociology, psychology, psychometrics, and geology. Moral psychological constructs that are important to the fabric of society have long been at or near the center of his interests: well-being, responsibility, negligence (as a legal construct and basis of liability), virtues, rational self-determination, and forms of impaired agency such as weakness of will and states of denial. He is the author of Aristotle on the Necessity of Public Education, a unitary interpretation of Aristotle’s Politics and Nicomachean Ethics, as well as Living Well Now and in the Future: Why Sustainability Matters, which advances a multi-generational conception of human flourishing that can ground a eudaimonic theory of justice.
David Decosimo, Ph.D., is director of the Institute for Philosophy & Religion, associate professor of Theology and Ethics, and affiliated faculty in the Department of Philosophy. He received his Ph.D. and an M.A. from Princeton University, an M.A. from the University of Chicago, and his B.A. from the University of Virginia, where he was an Echols Scholar. His research and teaching encompass ethics, religion, and politics. His first book, Ethics as a Work of Charity: Thomas Aquinas and Pagan Virtue (Stanford University Press, 2014), won the international Manfred Lautenschlaeger Prize from Heidelberg University. His scholarly articles on figures such as Augustine, al-Ghazālī, and Peter Abelard, and topics ranging from the ethics of torture and Islamic ideals of political freedom to the theory and method of comparative religion and the metaethics of intrinsic goodness, have appeared in scholarly journals in religious studies, law, theology, and philosophy.
As a cultural and political commentator, his writing has appeared in The Boston Globe and The Washington Post. A past chair of Boston University Faculty Council’s Academic Freedom Committee and a founding member of the Academic Freedom Alliance, he is a proponent of open inquiry, academic freedom, and a university and public culture marked by rich pluralism and a shared commitment to reasoned conversation, debate, and dialogue across our deepest disagreements. Likewise, Professor Decosimo is also an advocate of humanistic learning that invites students to explore questions about the most important things in conversation with one another and with diverse and enduring philosophical, religious, and literary works, past and present.
His second book, The Spirit of Christian Ethics, is forthcoming from Yale University Press.
Robert P. George is McCormick Professor of Jurisprudence and director of the James Madison Program in American Ideals and Institutions. He has served as chairman of the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF), and before that on the President’s Council on Bioethics and as a presidential appointee to the United States Commission on Civil Rights. He has also served as the U.S. member of UNESCO’s World Commission on the Ethics of Scientific Knowledge and Technology (COMEST). He is a former judicial fellow at the Supreme Court of the United States, where he received the Justice Tom C. Clark Award. A graduate of Swarthmore College, he holds J.D. and M.T.S. degrees from Harvard University and the degrees of D.Phil., B.C.L., D.C.L., and D.Litt. from Oxford University. He has been a visiting professor at Harvard Law School and is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.
Zena Hitz is a tutor at St. John’s College in Annapolis, as well as the founder and president of the Catherine Project. She writes for general audiences about freedom, education, happiness, the decline of our institutions, faith, hope, and love. Her scholarship is in classical philosophy, especially questions about law, character, friendship, and the human good.
John Inazu’s scholarship focuses on the First Amendment freedoms of speech, assembly, and religion, and related questions of legal and political theory. His books include Liberty’s Refuge: The Forgotten Freedom of Assembly (Yale University Press, 2012) and Confident Pluralism: Surviving and Thriving Through Deep Difference (University of Chicago Press, 2016; paperback 2018). Inazu is the special editor of a volume on law and theology published in Law and Contemporary Problems and co-editor (with Tim Keller) of Uncommon Ground: Living Faithfully in a World of Difference (Thomas Nelson, 2020). His articles have appeared in a number of law reviews and specialty journals, and he has written broadly for mainstream audiences in publications including the Atlantic, USA Today, the Los Angeles Times, and the Washington Post. Prior to law teaching, Inazu clerked for Judge Roger L. Wollman of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit and served for four years as an associate general counsel with the Department of the Air Force at the Pentagon.
Roosevelt Montas is senior lecturer in American Studies and English at Columbia University. He holds an A.B. (1995), an M.A. (1996), and a Ph.D. (2004) in English and Comparative Literature from Columbia University. He was director of the Center for the Core Curriculum at Columbia College from 2008 to 2018. Roosevelt specializes in Antebellum American literature and culture, with a particular interest in American citizenship. His dissertation, Rethinking America: Abolitionism and the Antebellum Transformation of the Discourse of National Identity, won Columbia University’s 2004 Bancroft Award. In 2000, he received the Presidential Award for Outstanding Teaching by a Graduate Student. Roosevelt teaches “Introduction to Contemporary Civilization in the West,” a year-long course on primary texts in moral and political thought, as well as seminars in American Studies including “Freedom and Citizenship in the United States.” He is director of the Center for American Studies’ Freedom and Citizenship Program in collaboration with the Double Discovery Center. He speaks and writes on the history, meaning, and future of liberal education and is author of Rescuing Socrates: How the Great Books Changed My Life and Why They Matter for a New Generation (Princeton University Press, 2021).
Anna Bonta Moreland is the Anne Quinn Welsh Endowed Chair and director of the University Honors Program at Villanova University. A full professor in the Department of Humanities, her academic expertise and research include medieval theology, interfaith dialogue, and comparative theology. She is the author of Known by Nature: Thomas Aquinas on Natural Knowledge of God (Crossroad/Herder, 2010), Muhammad Reconsidered: A Christian Perspective on Islamic Prophecy (University of Notre Dame Press, 2020), and Daring to Live: The Guide to a Meaningful Life (forthcoming). She is current recipient of a “Hope in Higher Education” Templeton Foundation three-year grant.
Angel Adams Parham is associate professor of sociology and senior fellow at the Institute for Advanced Studies in Culture (IASC) at the University of Virginia. She works in the area of historical sociology, engaging in research and writing that examine the past in order to better understand how to live well in the present and envision wisely for the future. This research focus is rooted in her interest in re-connecting sociology to its classical roots so that sociology is understood to be a kind of public philosophy animated by questions such as: What is a good society? and What kinds of social arrangements are most conducive to human flourishing? She is the author of American Routes: Racial Palimpsests and the Transformation of Race (Oxford, 2017), which was co-winner of the Social Science History Association’s Allan Sharlin Memorial book award (2018) and co-winner of the American Sociological Association’s Barrington Moore award in comparative-historical sociology (2018). In addition to this research, she is active in public-facing teaching and scholarship where she provides resources and training for K-12 educators who are looking to better integrate Black writers and Black history into their teaching. A book related to this work comes out in the summer of 2022 and is titled The Black Intellectual Tradition: Reading Freedom in Classical Literature. Parham’s public-facing work has also led her to become the co-founder and executive director of Nyansa Classical Community, an educational organization which provides curricula and programming designed to connect with students from diverse backgrounds, inviting them to take part in the Great Conversation, cultivate the moral imagination, and pursue truth, goodness, and beauty. She has been a member of the School of Social Science at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, as well as the recipient of a Fulbright grant. She received her bachelor’s degree from Yale University and completed her doctoral work at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Christopher A. Snyder became the first dean of the Shackouls Honors College at Mississippi State University in 2011. He is professor of history and director of British Studies at MSU, an affiliated faculty member in the Department of English, and was a History Research Fellow at the University of Oxford from 2014 to 2019. His M.A. and Ph.D. in Medieval History are from Emory University, and in addition to Emory he has taught at the College of William and Mary and at Marymount University, where he served for nine years as chair of the Department of History and Politics and five years as director of the Honors Program. He is a member of Phi Beta Kappa and a Distinguished Alumnus of the Eberly College of Arts and Sciences at West Virginia University, where he majored in Medieval and Renaissance Studies. Snyder has authored ten books and numerous articles in the fields of archaeology, history, literary criticism, ethics, and medieval studies. His most recent book is Hobbit Virtues: Rediscovering Virtue Ethics through J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings (New York and London: Pegasus/ Simon & Schuster, 2020). Snyder has also lectured frequently at the Smithsonian Institution and has appeared on the History Channel, The Learning Channel, the National Geographic Channel, and BBC television and radio. He is a fellow of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland and sits on the editorial boards of several academic journals and internet projects in medieval and Arthurian studies.
Jenna Silber Storey is a senior fellow in the Department of Social, Cultural, and Constitutional Studies at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI), where she concentrates on political philosophy, civil society, classical schools, and higher education. She is also the co-organizer of a conference series on the future of the American university. Storey is concurrently a research professor at Furman University, where she was previously assistant professor in politics and international affairs and the executive director of the Tocqueville Program. For the 2022–23 academic year, Storey is also an alumni-in-residence at the University of Chicago.
In addition to Furman University, Storey has taught at the University of Chicago; the Buckley Program at Yale University; the Hertog Summer Studies Program in Washington, DC; and the Tikvah Fund in Princeton, New Jersey. Earlier she worked as executive assistant to the superintendent for the Boston University–Chelsea Schools partnership. She served as a board member of Veritas Preparatory School in Greenville, South Carolina, from 2019 to 2021.
Storey is the coauthor, with her husband, Benjamin Storey, of Why We Are Restless: On the Modern Quest for Contentment (Princeton University Press, 2021). Together, the Storeys are working on a book titled The Art of Choosing: How Liberal Education Should Prepare You for Life.
Storey’s work has been published in media outlets such as the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, National Affairs, Humanities, the Boston Globe, National Review, American Purpose, Society, the New Atlantis, City Journal, the Claremont Review of Books, and First Things. She has lectured at institutions such as Oxford University, West Point, the City College of New York, American University, the University of Notre Dame, the Institute for Classical Education, and the American Council of Trustees and Alumni. She has also delivered papers at the American Political Science Association conference and other disciplinary conferences.
Storey has a Ph.D. from the University of Chicago’s Committee on Social Thought and a B.A. from the University Professors Program at Boston University. She spent time in Germany as a visiting student at the University of Tübingen and as an exchange student at Dresden University.
Cornel West is the Dietrich Bonhoeffer Chair at Union Theological Seminary. West teaches on the works of Dietrich Bonhoeffer, as well as courses in philosophy of religion, African American Critical Thought, and a wide range of subjects — including, but by no means limited to, the classics, philosophy, politics, cultural theory, literature, and music.
West is the former professor of the Practice of Public Philosophy at Harvard University and professor emeritus at Princeton University. Cornel West graduated Magna Cum Laude from Harvard in three years, and obtained his M.A. and Ph.D. in philosophy at Princeton.
He has written 20 books and has edited 13. He is best known for his classics, Race Matters and Democracy Matters, and for his memoir, Brother West: Living and Loving Out Loud. His most recent book, Black Prophetic Fire, offers an unflinching look at nineteenth and twentieth-century African American leaders and their visionary legacies.
West is a frequent guest on the Bill Maher Show, CNN, C-Span and Democracy Now. He has a passion to communicate to a vast variety of publics in order to keep alive the legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr. – a legacy of telling the truth and bearing witness to love and justice.