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TFAS Professors Barnett, Birzer And Morriss Receive National Honors And Recognition

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The Fund for American Studies would be remiss if it did not recognize the following professors for their most recent and prestigious awards and honors: Randy E. Barnett, Bradley J. Birzer, and Andrew Morriss. These men are paramount to The Fund for American Studies’ mission to educate promising young interns about economic freedom and the free market, constitutional liberties and small government, and most importantly how to apply these principles as future leaders and innovators with integrity.

Professor Randy E. Barnett: 2014 Bradley Prize Recipient

On June 18, TFAS Professor Randy E. Barnett received one of four 2014 Bradley Prizes during a ceremony at The John F. Kennedy Center for Performing Arts in Washington, D.C. Barnett received the prestigious prize for exemplifying The Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation’s mission to maintain and to protect the tradition of free representative government and private enterprise that has enabled economic and intellectual flourishing.

Barnett is founding member of the TFAS Legal Studies Board of visitors. This summer, he served as the lead professor in our Legal Studies Institute course called “Constitutional Interpretation: Originalism in Theory and Practice.” The course, designed by Barnett himself, examined the actual text of the Constitution and explored the public meaning of the text at the time it was adopted.

Barnett is also a 2008 recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship in Constitutional Studies as well as a conferee of the 2011 Charles G. Koch Outstanding IHS Alumni Award from the Institute for Humane Studies.

Perhaps Barnett’s most notable pursuit was in 2012 as one of the lawyers who represented the National Federation of Independent Businesses that challenged the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act. Prior to this involvement, Barnett worked with the Institute for Justice, and the Cato Institute in the medical marijuana case of Gonzales v. Raich in the U.S. Court of Appeals where he successfully argued before the Ninth Circuit.

Caption: Professors Brad Birzer (left) and Andrew Morriss (center) lead a seminar on "Civilization and Liberty with TFAS alumni.
Caption: Professors Brad Birzer (left) and Andrew Morriss (center) lead a seminar on “Civilization and Liberty with TFAS alumni.

Professor Brad Birzer: Appointed Visiting Scholar in Conservative Thought and Policy at the University of Colorado Boulder

For the second consecutive year, a TFAS professor has been named the Visiting Scholar in Conservative Thought and Policy at the University of Colorado Boulder. Dr. Bradley J. Birzer was appointed to the position on June 3 and will begin his one-year appointment in the fall of 2014. Birzer replaces fellow TFAS professor Steven Hayward, who was the university’s inaugural visiting scholar.

Dr. Birzer serves as a discussion leader for TFAS continuing education programs including the TFAS Leadership Fellows and Freedom Scholars programs.

As the University of Colorado Boulder’s visiting scholar, Dr. Birzer is to teach four classes over the approaching 2014-15 fall and spring semesters to both upper and underclassman. He is also expected to develop this curriculum with public events and debates as a way to stimulate intellectual discourse around campus and throughout the Boulder community.

Currently, Birzer holds the Russell Amos Kirk Chair in History at Hillsdale where his lectures and classes run the gamut from Civil War history to twentieth century Christian humanism. Dr. Birzer is also the co-founder of The Imaginative Conservative, an online journal that publishes a variety of works on conservatism, as well as an author of five books and a co-author of two including his most recent, the “American Cicero: The Life of Charles Carroll.”

Dr. Andrew Morriss: New Dean of Texas A&M University School of Law

After an extensive national search for their new dean of Texas A&M University School of Law, the Board of Regents approved the appointment of Dr. Andrew J. Morriss to fill this esteemed position.

Morriss begins his work with Texas A&M in July 2014 and will be the first to hold the Anthony G. Buzbee Dean’s Endowed Chair ­– a position that Texas A&M Regent Chair Tony Buzbee, established with a $1 million endowment.

Professor Morriss taught TFAS economics courses in both the Asia Institute for Political Economy (AIPE) in Hong Kong and the International Institute for Political and Economic Studies (IIPES) in Greece. He often incorporated economic games into his classrooms, giving students a chance to test the principles they studied during the course. Morriss has also served as a discussion leader during TFAS alumni continuing education programs such as Freedom Scholars and the Curriculum of Liberty Seminars.

Professor Morriss, who along with his J.D. received his doctorate in economics from Massachusetts Institute of Technology, was the D. Paul Jones Jr. & Charlene A. Jones Chairholder of Law at the University of Alabama. Prior to this, Morriss was a professor of Law and Business at the University of Illinois. Under his tenure, both law schools saw vastly improved academic standings, moving both from the top 100 to the top 25. Chancellor John Sharp of the University of Texas A&M, a board regent, notes that Morriss will definitely be an asset to accelerate Texas A&M’s school of law into the top ranks.

Written by Emily Bundock, Intern for TFAS through the Koch Internship Program.

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