Our staff manages NAS’s day-to-day work and the journal Academic Questions. The Board of Directors oversees NAS’s budget and long-term strategies. The Board of Advisors brings together distinguished scholars from every field of higher education.

Staff

Peter Wyatt Wood
President
pwood@nas.org

Peter Wood is an anthropologist and former provost. He was appointed president of the NAS in January 2009. Before that he served as NAS’s executive director (2007-2008), and as provost of The King’s College in New York City (2005-2007).

Dr. Wood was a tenured member of the Anthropology Department at Boston University, where he also held a variety of administrative positions, including associate provost and president’s chief of staff. He also oversaw the university’s scholarly publications and served as acting university librarian.

He received his Ph.D. in anthropology in 1987 from the University of Rochester. His dissertation, Quoting Heaven, examined the emergence of an American folk religion and pilgrimage center in rural Wisconsin. His undergraduate degree is from Haverford College (1975) and he has a master’s degree in library science from Rutgers University (1977).

Dr. Wood is the author of A Bee in the Mouth: Anger in America Now (Encounter Books, 2007) and of Diversity: The Invention of a Concept (Encounter Books, 2003) which won the Caldwell Award for Leadership in Higher Education from the John Locke Foundation. These books extend his anthropological interest in examining emergent themes in modern American culture.

In addition to his scholarly work, Dr. Wood has published several hundred articles in print and online journals, such as Partisan Review and National Review Online, and the Chronicle of Higher Education.

 

Ashley Thorne
Executive Director
thorne@nas.org

Ashley joined the NAS staff as director of communications in 2008, became director of the Center for the Study of the Curriculum in 2012, and became executive director in 2014. She received her undergraduate degree in politics, philosophy, and economics from The King’s College in 2007. In 2010 she published a chapter, “Ducking the Coffins: How I Became an Edu-Con,” in an anthology edited by Jonah Goldberg, Proud to Be Right.

 

MICHAEL T. TOSCANO 
Director of Research Projects 
toscano@nas.org
 

 

Michael Toscano joined the NAS staff in 2012 as Director of Research Projects after working as a research fellow on the “What Does Bowdoin Teach?” project. He received his bachelor’s degree in Politics, Philosophy, and Economics from The King’s College in 2008. Prior to working at NAS, he helped develop the curriculum for a two-semester Western Civilization sequence at The King’s College.

 

Glenn M. Ricketts
Public Affairs Director
ricketts@nas.org

Public Affairs Director Glenn Ricketts joined the NAS staff in 1989. He was the founding president of the NAS New Jersey state affiliate, and served for 20 years on the NAS board of directors. A graduate of Temple University in Philadelphia, he received his Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of Chicago. He is also professor of political science and U.S. history at Raritan Valley Community College in Somerville New Jersey, where he has taught since 1982.

 

Rachelle Peterson
Research Associate
peterson@nas.org

Rachelle Peterson joined NAS in 2013 as a research associate analyzing the campus sustainability movement. She graduated from The King’s College in May 2013 with a bachelor’s degree in Politics, Philosophy, and Economics.

 

Carol Iannone
Editor-at-Large, Academic Questions

 

 

 

Felicia Sanzari Chernesky
Managing Editor, Academic Questions
chernesky@nas.org

Felicia Sanzari Chernesky returned to the position of managing editor of Academic Questions in October 2007. She graduated magna cum laude from the University of Pennsylvania with a BA in English, majoring in American poetry, with a minor in French literature and a concentration in Latin. She began working for the National Association of Scholars in 1987, and served as an assistant director, editor of the NAS newsletter, NAS Update, and managing editor of Academic Questions. In 1993 she left full-time employment to begin raising a family. While remaining an independent consultant to the NAS, she also freelanced as an editor and writer. A published poet, she is pursuing an MFA in Poetry with an Emphasis in Formal Verse at Western State College of Colorado. She is also active in the New Jersey chapter of the Society for Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, and is represented by The Bent Agency.

 

Wanda Cooley
Operations Director
cooley@nas.org

Wanda Cooley has over twenty years of experience as an administrative assistant, working within both private and public sectors. She received her associate’s degree in business administration from Meadows Draughn College. Wanda became a citizen of New Jersey after leaving her native city, New Orleans, due to Hurricane Katrina. She joined the National Association of Scholars as Secretary in November 2005 and became Director of Operations in 2011. 

 

 

Board of Directors

HERBERT LONDON
Chairman
herb@hudson.org

Herbert I. London is president of the London Center for Policy Research and senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute. He is the former president of the Hudson Institute. He is professor emeritus and the former John M. Olin Professor of Humanities at New York University. He was responsible for creating the Gallatin School of Individualized Study in 1972 and was its dean until 1992. This school was organized to promote the study of “great books” and classic texts. Herbert London is a graduate of Columbia University, 1960, and the recipient of a Ph.D. from New York University, 1966.


STEVE BALCH
Founder
steve.balch@ttu.edu


Stephen H. Balch is director of The Institute for the Study of Western Civilization at Texas Tech University. He previously served for twenty-five years as the founding president and then the chairman of the National Association of Scholars. He holds a Ph.D. in political science from the University of California at Berkeley and was for fourteen years a member of the faculty of the Department of Government and Public Administration of John Jay College of Criminal Justice, part of the City University of New York. In 2007 he received the National Humanities Medal from President George W. Bush. In 2009 he was the recipient of the Jeane Jordan Kirkpatrick Academic Freedom Award from the American Conservative Union Foundation and the Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation.

 

DANIEL ASIA
Professor of Music, University of Arizona, whose compositions include five symphonies, an opera, and numerous other works.

 

EVELYN AVERY
Associate Professor of English and former director of Jewish Studies, Towson State University.

 

JAY A. BERGMAN
Professor of History, Central Connecticut State University, whose research focuses on modern Russian history.

 

PETER BERKOWITZ
Tad and Dianne Taube Senior Fellow, Hoover Institution at Stanford University, where he chairs the National Security and Law Task Force.

 

PHILIP J. CLEMENTS
Managing Director, Cathedral Consulting Group, which provides business management consulting to small to midsized private companies; Adjunct Professor of Business, Rutgers University, Masters in Accounting Program; Distinguished Visiting Professor of Business, The King’s College, New York.

 

WARD CONNERLY
Founder and President of the American Civil Rights Institute, former President and CEO of Connerly & Associates, Inc., a land developing consulting firm, and a former Regent of the University of California.

 

MIDGE DECTER
Founder, Committee for the Free World, and widely published writer.

 

 

GEORGE W. DENT, JR.
Professor of Law, Case Western Reserve University, where he is the Associate Director of the Law School's Center for Business Law and Regulation.

 

CANDACE DE RUSSY
Regent, Ave Maria University; member of advisory boards of FIRE, the Independent Women's Forum, the International Institute of Classical Humanities, and the Cardinal Newman Society; former trustee of SUNY and member of Board of Visitors of the U.S. Air Force Academy.

 

DAVID GORDON
Professor of History, City University of New York, where he focuses on the economic history of France and French investments in East Asia.

 

GAIL L. HERIOT
Professor of Law, University of San Diego and member of the U.S. Civil Rights Commission.

 

THOMAS KLINGENSTEIN
Founder and Principal of Cohen Klingenstein LLC, a New York City investment firm; Chairman of Claremont Institute; and playwright.

 

ROBERT C. KOONS
Professor of Philosophy, University of Texas at Austin, where he specializes in the application of logic to metaphysics, the philosophy of mind, political philosophy, and philosophy of religion.

 

BARRY LATZER
Professor of Criminal Justice at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, CUNY, who has published widely on criminal procedure, the death penalty, and the history of crime.

 

THOMAS K. LINDSAY
Former president of Shimer College, and former provost of the University of Dallas, Director of the Center for Higher Education at the Texas Public Policy Foundation, and former deputy chairman of the National Endowment for the Humanities. His research focuses on Aristotle’s teaching on the relation between education and democracy in the Politics.

 

WIGHT MARTINDALE
Former journalist and Wall Street businessman who worked at Lehman Brothers for 17 years as a Senior Vice President in the bond department and later as a managing director with Guggenheim Capital Markets. He has taught at Lehigh University, Temple University, and Villanova University.

 

ANNE D. NEAL
Co-Founder and President, American Council of Trustees and Alumni, which protects liberal arts education and high academic standards.

 

B. NELSON ONG
Associate Professor of Political Science, College of New Rochelle, focusing his research in the foundations of American constitutionalism.

 

NORM ROGERS
Founder and former CEO of Rabbit Semiconductor, a California manufacturer of embedded microprocessors and software for embedded programming; volunteer senior policy advisor, The Heartland Institute, Chicago. He writes about global warming from a skeptical point of view.

 

BARRY SMITH
Distinguished Professor of Philosophy, University at Buffalo and Director, National Center for Ontological Research.

 

SANDRA STOTSKY
Chair, Department of Education Reform, University of Arkansas and nationally-known expert in English language arts content standards.

 

RICHARD VEDDER
Distinguished Professor of Economics Emeritus, Ohio University; founder, Center for College Affordability and Productivity.

 

BRADLEY C.S. WATSON
Department Chair, Philip M. McKenna Professor of Politics, and Co-Director of the Center for Political and Economic Thought at St. Vincent College, Latrobe, PA.

 

AMY L. WAX
Robert Mundheim Professor of Law, University of Pennsylvania, and an expert in civil procedure, appellate litigation, social welfare law and policy, and the law and economics of work and family.

 

KEITH WHITAKER
Founding Associate, Wise Counsel Research Associates; formerly a philosophy professor, Boston College, and writing instructor, Boston University.

 

 

Current Board of Advisors

John Agresto
Walter Berns
Edwin J. Delattre
Chester E. Finn, Jr.
Robert P. George
Gertrude Himmelfarb
Paul Hollander
Harry V. Jaffa
Donald Kagan
Richard D. Lamm
Leslie Lenkowsky
Harvey C. Mansfield
Milton J. Rosenberg
Christina Hoff Sommers
Shelby Steele
Stephan Thernstrom
Edward O. Wilson
 

 

Former Members of the Board of Advisors

 

Jacques Barzun
James David Barber
Eugene D. Genovese
Irving Louis Horowitz
Robert Jastrow
Jeane J. Kirkpatrick
Irving Kristol
Seymour Martin Lipset
Sir Hugh Lloyd-Jones
Nelson W. Polsby
Willard V. Quine
Leo Raditsa
Stanley Rothman
John R. Silber
Ernest van den Haag
James Q. Wilson