Advisory Board

David Alton

Lord David Alton, House of Lords, Great Britain

For 18 years, from 1979, David Alton was a Member of the House of Commons and in 1997 was appointed as an Independent Member of the House of Lords.
Lord Alton is a professor at Liverpool Hope University and formerly Professor of Citizenship at Liverpool John Moores University.  Lord Alton is a co-founder of Jubilee Campaign; a recipient of the Thomas More Award for Religious Freedom; former Board Member of Aid to the Church in Need; and in 2019 he was presented with a State Department Award for his work on human rights by Ambassador Sam Brownback. 

Louis Brown

Mr. Louis Brown, Christ Medicus

Louis Brown serves as the Executive Director of the Christ Medicus Foundation, a Catholic health care nonprofit whose mission is to share the healing love of Jesus Christ in health care. Brown received a Juris Doctorate from Howard University School of Law in Washington, D.C. After law school, he worked as a private practice attorney for a firm where he practiced labor law and commercial litigation. He later served as associate director of social concerns for a state Catholic conference where his work included advocating for life-affirming health care policy, co-leading a coalition in favor of housing non-discrimination legislation, and advocating for in-state tuition for undocumented immigrants. Brown went on to become a congressional staffer on Capitol Hill where he served as a U.S. Congressman’s legislative counsel and his liaison to the U.S. House Committee on the Judiciary. 

Thomas Farr

Dr. Thomas Farr, Religious Freedom Institute

Thomas Farr is Co-Founder and President of the Religious Freedom Institute. Farr is a leading authority on religious freedom in the United States and around the world. He was founding director of the State Department's Office of International Religious Freedom, and of the Religious Freedom Project at Georgetown University. He chaired the Witherspoon Institute’s Task force on International Religious Freedom, and served on the Secretary of State’s Religious Freedom Working Group. 

In addition to serving on the advisory board of Notre Dame Law School's Religious Liberty Initiative, he serves on advisory boards for the Human Rights Program at Catholic University, Alliance Defending Freedom international, the Alexander Hamilton Society, and the Museum of American Religion. 

Robert George

Prof. Robert George, Princeton University

Robert P. George is McCormick Professorship of Jurisprudence and Director of the James Madison Program in American Ideals and Institutions at Princeton University. He has served as Chairman of the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom and on the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights and the President’s Council on Bioethics. He has also served as the U.S. member of UNESCO’s World Commission on the Ethics of Scientific Knowledge and Technology. He was a Judicial Fellow at the Supreme Court of the United States, where he received the Justice Tom C. Clark Award.

A Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Swarthmore, he holds the degrees of J.D. and M.T.S. from Harvard University and the degrees of D.Phil., B.C.L., D.C.L., and D.Litt. from Oxford University, in addition to twenty-two honorary doctorates. He is a recipient of the U.S. Presidential Citizens Medal, the Honorific Medal for the Defense of Human Rights of the Republic of Poland, the Canterbury Medal of the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, the Irving Kristol Award of the American Enterprise Institute, and Princeton University’s President’s Award for Distinguished Teaching.

Nazila Ghanea

Dr. Nazila Ghanea, University of Oxford

Professor Nazila Ghanea is the Director of International Human Rights Law programmes at the University of Oxford. She serves on the Board of Governors of the Universal Rights Group and as its Vice Chair.

She has authored, co-authored and edited a number of academic and UN publications. Her UN publications address a range of issues including the rights and security of religious minorities, ethnic and religious minorities in the Islamic Republic of Iran and the advocacy of national, racial or religious hatred that constitutes incitement to discrimination, hostility or violence. She has addressed a range of UN fora including the UN Human Rights Council and the Minorities Forum.

Mary Ann Glendon

Prof. Mary Ann Glendon, Harvard University

Mary Ann Glendon is the Learned Hand Professor of Law, emerita, at Harvard University, and a Distinguished Research Affiliate of the Kellogg Institute for International Studies at Notre Dame.  A former U.S. Ambassador to the Holy See, Glendon’s government service includes chairing the U.S. State Department Commission on Unalienable Rights and membership on the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom and the U.S. President's Council on Bioethics.  She received the National Humanities Medal in 2006.  Her books include The Forum and the Tower, Traditions in Turmoil, A World Made New: Eleanor Roosevelt and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, A Nation Under Lawyers, and Rights Talk.

Brian Grim

Dr. Brian Grim, Religious Freedom & Business Foundation

Brian Grim, Ph. D., is Religious Freedom & Business Foundation president, a corporate trainer, and the leading scholar on the socio-economic impact of faith and religious freedom.  He is a TEDx speaker at the Vatican and a speaker at the World Economic Forum’s Annual Meeting in Davos. Grim’s recent research finds that religion contributes $1.2 trillion to the U.S. economy annually, more than the combined revenues of companies including Apple, Amazon and Google. He is recent chair of the World Economic Forum’s faith council and he works closely with the United Nations Business for Peace platform. He is an affiliated scholar at Baylor University, Boston University, Georgetown University, and the Freedom Forum Institute. 

Susan Johnson Cook

Amb. Suzan Johnson Cook, Charisma Speakers

Ambassador Suzan Johnson Cook was the first African-American female  and faith leader to hold the position of the U.S. Ambassador At-Large for International Religious Freedom.

Responsible for religious freedom globally, and having all 199 countries in her portfolio, she integrated religious freedom into the foreign policy and national security discussions, and has continued to work to empower women and business  leaders around the world. She served as the Faith Advisor to two U.S. Presidents, three Cabinet members, political and celebrity leaders. President Bill Clinton appointed her as the only faith advisor to the historic “President’s Initiative on Race.” She became famous for the standing room only Lunch Hour of Power, and Wonderful Wall Street Wednesdays, televised mid week services and seminars for the business community.  The New York Times described her as “Oprah and Billy Graham rolled up into one.” 


Dr. Paul Kerry, Brigham Young University

Paul E. Kerry is an associate dean of Undergraduate Education, an associate professor in the department of History, and a member of the European Studies faculty. He researches in German and European intellectual history, transatlantic transmission of ideas, and historiography. He is on the editorial board of Religion in the Age of Enlightenment, the advisory boards of Carlyle Studies Annual and Fairleigh Dickinson University Press, and the editorial committee of the Strouse Edition of Carlyle's works published by the University of California Press.

Doug Laycock

Prof. Douglas Laycock, University of Virginia

Douglas Laycock is the Robert E. Scott Distinguished Professor at Law and Professor of Religious Studies at the University of Virginia, and Alice McKean Young Regents Chair in Law Emeritus at the University of Texas. He has long advocated protecting religious liberty for all faiths and for nonbelievers, and for serious enforcement of both the Free Exercise and Establishment Clauses.

He served as lead counsel in six cases in the Supreme Court of the United States: Church of the Lukumi Babalu Aye v. City of Hialeah, City of Boerne v. Flores, Santa Fe Independent School District v. Doe, Hosanna-Tabor Evangelical Lutheran Church and School v. EEOC, Town of Greece v. Galloway, and Holt v. Hobbs, and filed amicus briefs in many other cases.

Samah Norquist

Mrs. Samah Norquist

Samah Norquist served as the Chief Advisor for International Religious Freedom to the Administrator of the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). She spearheaded USAID’s contributions to the implementation of President Trump’s Executive Order 13926 on Advancing International Religious Freedom that elevated the protection of religious freedom worldwide as priority for U.S. foreign policy.

In her previous capacity, Norquist led the USAID’s Middle East Religious Freedom and Pluralism portfolio, which promotes efforts to strengthen religious freedom and pluralism in the region starting with the Genocide Recovery and Persecution Response (GRPR) program that provides direct assistance to victims of ISIS-led genocide in Iraq. In September 2019, Norquist oversaw the Middle East Bureau’s programming of more than $50 million in activities to promote religious liberty and pluralism and to combat discrimination, repression, or persecution of ethnic or religious communities across the Middle East.

Mona Polacca

Grandmother Mona Polacca

Mona Polacca is an educator, facilitator and speaker. She has held posts of responsibility within her own community, such as Treasurer for her tribe, the Colorado River Indian Tribes. She has a master’s in social work and justice studies (ABD) at Arizona State University and has over thirty years of experience working, presenting and publishing on health and social issues affecting Native American peoples. She is serves as a tribal liaison of the Healing the Border Project of the Indigenous Alliance Without Borders. She is currently a Senior Fellow overseeing the Original Caretakers Program for the Center of Earth Ethics. As the President of the International Council of Thirteen Indigenous Grandmothers, she works with Indigenous women to preserve, and protect Indigenous practices and ceremonies, including the right to use their earth-based medicines. She is a participant in the United Nations Permanent Forum of Indigenous Peoples Issues and has assisted in listening sessions with Indigenous Peoples. Her spiritual practice is grounded in the Havasupai, Hopi and Tewa Original Instructions and the Native American Church. 

Elizabeth Prodromou

Dr. Elizabeth Prodromou, Tufts University

Dr. Elizabeth H. Prodromou teaches in the Program on International Negotiation and Conflict Resolution at The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University, where she is Faculty Director of the Initiative on Religion, Law, and Diplomacy.  She is a Co-President of Religions for Peace, and is non-resident Senior Fellow and Co-Chair of the Working Group on Christians and Religious Pluralism in the Middle East, at the Hudson Institute’s Center for Religious Freedom. Prodromou served as Vice Chair and Commissioner on the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (2004-2012) and was a member of the U.S. Secretary of State’s Religion & Foreign Policy Working Group (2011-2015).  Her research interests focus on geopolitics and religion, as well as democratization, religious freedom, and security, with particular focus on the Eastern Mediterranean and Middle East.  Her current research projects involve cultural heritage and institutional religious freedom in Turkey, and Orthodox Christianity, religious diplomacy, and typologies of power.  

Jim Rice

Dr. Jim Rice, Gallagher Consulting

Jim Rice, PhD, FACHE, is Senior Adviser with the Governance & Leadership service line of Gallagher’s Human Resources & Compensation Consulting practice. He focuses his consulting work on strategic governance structures and systems for high performing, tax-exempt nonprofit, credit union and health sector organizations and integrated care systems; visioning for large and small not-for-profit organizations; and leadership development for physicians, boards and C-Suite senior leaders.

Rice holds masters and doctoral degrees in management and health policy from the University of Minnesota. He has received the University of Minnesota, School of Public Health Distinguished Alumni Leadership Award; a National Institute of Health Doctoral Fellowship; a US Public Health Service Traineeship in Hospital Management; a Bush Leadership Fellowship at Stanford and the National University of Singapore; and the American Hospital Association’s Corning Award for Excellence in Hospital Planning. He is a Fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE).

Jacqueline Rivers

Dr. Jacqueline Rivers, Seymour Institute for Black Church and Policy Studies

Jacqueline C. Rivers is currently a lecturer in Sociology at Harvard University. She is the Executive Director and Senior Fellow for Social Science and Policy of the Seymour Institute for Black Church and Policy Studies. She is also a Senior Fellow at The King’s College in New York City. She was a Hutchins Fellow in the W. E. B. Du Bois Research Institute at Harvard University. She has presented at Princeton University, the University of Notre Dame, the University of Pennsylvania, the Vatican, Stanford University, the United Nations and in several other venues. 

Rivers works with leaders in the ecumenical black church to promote a philosophical, political, and theological framework for a pro-poor, pro-life, pro-family movement. She has worked on issues of social justice and Christian activism in the black community for more than thirty years. She serves on the Board of Advisors for the Religious Freedom Institute, the Board of Directors for Becket Law, the Board of Directors for the Center for Early African Christianity.

Nury Turkel

Commissioner Nury Turkel, U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom

Nury Turkel is the first U.S.-educated Uyghur-American lawyer, foreign policy expert, and human rights advocate. He was born in a re-education camp at the height of China’s tumultuous Cultural Revolution and spent the first several months of his life in detention with his mother. He came to the United States in 1995 as a student and was later granted asylum by the U.S. government. As an attorney, he specializes in regulatory compliance, federal investigation and enforcement, anti-bribery, legislative advocacy, and immigration.

In May 2020, Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) appointed Turkel as a Commissioner to the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF). In September 2020, Turkel was named one of the TIME 100 Most Influential People in the World.

Asma Uddin

Ms. Asma Uddin, Religious Liberty Lawyer and Scholar

Asma Uddin is the author of When Islam Is Not a Religion: Inside America's Fight for Religious Freedom (2019) and The Politics of Vulnerability: How to Heal Muslim-Christian Relations in a Post-Christian America (2021). She is an Inclusive America Project Fellow at the Aspen Institute, where she is leading a project on Muslim-Christian polarization in the U.S. Uddin was formerly legal counsel at the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, and has held academic fellowships at Georgetown and UCLA. She is also an expert advisor on religious freedom to the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, and a term-member of the Council on Foreign Relations. Uddin is a graduate of the University of Chicago Law School. 

Syeeda Warsi

Baroness Sayeeda Warsi

A lawyer, a businesswoman, a campaigner, and a cabinet minister, Sayeeda Warsi has had many roles, but she is best known for being the first Muslim to serve in a British cabinet. In 2007 she was elevated to the House of Lords aged 36, making her the youngest peer in Parliament, and in 2010 she was appointed by Prime Minister David Cameron as Minister without Portfolio.

She is an International Advisor to Australia Catholic University, a Visiting Professor at St Marys – the oldest Catholic university in the UK, an Advisor to Georgetown University, Washington D.C, a member of International Advisory Board on FORB, University of Notre Dame and Pro-Vice Chancellor at the University of Bolton. She has also been awarded Honorary Doctorates from Aston, Birmingham City, and Bolton universities, as well as from the University of Law.

Paul Yowell

Prof. Paul Yowell, University of Oxford

Paul Yowell is the Benn Fellow and Tutor in Law of Oriel College at Oxford and Associate Professor, Faculty of Law, University of Oxford. He is also an adjunct professor of Notre Dame Law School, where he teaches for the London Law Program. His postgraduate studies were at Oxford (DPhil, MPhil, BCL); previously he practiced law and studied in the U.S. (BA, JD, Baylor University). He is the author of Constitutional Rights and Constitutional Design: Moral and Empirical Reasoning in Judicial Review and co-author of Legislated Rights: Securing Human Rights Through Legislation. He researches in public law and legal theory, with interest in the separation of powers, constitutional theory, comparative constitutional law, and human rights.