Fall 2008

The Jepson School of Leadership Studies announces the establishment of the John Marshall International Center for the Study of Statesmanship. The program has been made possible by the generous support of the Thomas W. Smith Foundation and will be co-directed by professors Gary L. McDowell and Terry L. Price. The new center will approach the study and practice of statesmanship through a program that will combine scholarly and practical attention to constitutionalism, political economy, politics, and ethical reasoning. At its core will be a great-books approach to both understanding and practicing responsible leadership.
“It is entirely fitting that this program honor the memory of Richmond’s famous citizen, John Marshall,” said McDowell. Although best known for his long tenure as Chief Justice of the United States (1801-1835), Marshall also served as United States Secretary of State (1800-1801) and briefly as a member of the United States House of Representatives (1799-1800). During the Adams administration he had also distinguished himself as a special envoy in “the X,Y,Z affair” (1797-1798). “In every role, one sees his firm commitment to responsible decision-making by political leaders that lay at the foundation of  his understanding of the rule of law and modern constitutionalism,” said McDowell. 

Within the University of Richmond, the Marshall Center will serve the faculty and students of the university by encouraging the development of new courses and the creation of faculty seminars for the exchange of ideas about the nature and prospects of statesmanship.

The center will also look beyond Richmond and be international in its scope and in the design of its program. Advised by an international board of distinguished scholars, whose honorary chairman will be the former Prime Minister of Great Britain Margaret Thatcher, the center will host a series of public lecturers from around the world who will speak on the problems and prospects of leadership in international perspective.

According to Dean Sandra J. Peart, “a vital part of the center’s work will be to host visiting post-doctoral fellows who will spend a semester or perhaps a full academic year at the Marshall International Center pursuing their research within the context of the history of political, legal, economic, and constitutional ideas.

“The Marshall Center has found a good home within the Jepson School, which is noted for interdisciplinary studies and cross school collaborations.”

McDowell and Price will direct the center’s programs. McDowell holds a doctorate in government and public affairs. His teaching and research interests are the Constitution, the judiciary, politics, statesmanship and civil liberties. He holds the Tyler Haynes Interdisciplinary Professorship in Leadership Studies, Political Science and Law. Previously, he directed the Institute of United States Studies and taught  at the University of London. He also served on the Fulbright Commission, and he directed the Office of the Bicentennial of the Constitution at the National Endowment for the Humanities. Associate Professor Price also serves as the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs at the Jepson School. He holds a doctorate in philosophy, and his research and teaching interests are in leadership ethics, moral psychology, and political and legal theory.