Scholar On Faith-based Organizations Joins Baylor's ISR As Senior Fellow

May 18, 2009
News Photo 4712Amy L. Sherman

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Dr. Amy L. Sherman, one of the country's leading scholars on the role of faith-based organizations in society, will join Baylor University's Institute for Studies of Religion as a Senior Fellow.

Sherman is currently director of the Center on Faith in Communities at the Sagamore Institute for Policy Research, a nonprofit, nonpartisan think tank headquartered in Indianapolis. She previously held a similar post at the Hudson Institute, a public policy think tank, and has been a fellow at the Manhattan Institute. Sherman plays key leadership roles in the national Faith and Service Technical Education Network (FASTEN), where she seeks to uncover what's working for faith-based groups at the grassroots level and communicates lessons learned to policymakers and practitioners.

She is the author of 13 books, including The Relentless Pursuit: Stories of God's Love, Hope, and Grace in the Neighborhood (2007); Reinvigorating Faith in Communities (2002); The ABCs of Community Ministry (2002); Empowering Compassion: The Strategic Role of Intermediary Organizations in Building Capacity Among and Enhancing the Impact of Community Transformers (2002); Restorers of Hope: Reaching the Poor in Your Community with Church-based Ministries That Work (1997); and The Soul of Development: Biblical Christianity and Economic Transformation in Guatemala (1997).

Sherman received her bachelor's degree from Messiah College and her doctorate in foreign affairs and economic development from the University of Virginia.

"The addition of Amy Sherman is an important one because of her long track record of conducting research on faith communities and the critical role they play in advancing a more civil society," said Jay Hein, ISR Distinguished Senior Fellow and former director of the White House Office of Faith-based and Community Initiatives.

Sherman will be collaborating with Hein and Baylor scholars on a number of different research initiatives within ISR's program on faith and service. These include research on congregational vitality, the efficacy of community ministries and faith-based approaches to community revitalization.

A frequent speaker at public-policy conferences on welfare reform and faith-based issues, Sherman has assisted congregations attempting to launch or enhance various community ministries.

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