Dean Douglas Hicks joins student leaders at the annual Coke toast.

Dean Douglas A. Hicks

Douglas A. Hicks is dean of Oxford College of Emory University and William R. Kenan Jr. Professor of Religion. He also holds an appointment as an affiliate professor in the Candler School of Theology at Emory. As dean, Hicks serves as the chief officer of Oxford College, one of the nine academic units of Emory University.

From his undergraduate days and throughout his career, Hicks has embraced residential liberal-arts education. He says, "I am delighted to be a part of the Oxford College community, with its strong sense of place and educational mission. I was drawn to Oxford because it offers a unique and firm foundation in the liberal arts. Through an intensive two-year experience, Oxford fosters students’ critical thinking and intellectual curiosity, preparing them to flourish in the rest of their time at Emory and their lives beyond.”

In 2016–2017 Hicks guided the development and endorsement of Oxford's strategic plan, Forging Pathways of Excellence, with priorities on academic excellence; leadership education; and investment in financial aid, infrastructure, and faculty and staff.

Hicks joined Oxford College from Colgate University, where he served as provost and dean of the faculty. From 1998 to 2012 he was professor of leadership studies and religion at the University of Richmond’s Jepson School of Leadership Studies and the founding director of the university’s Bonner Center for Civic Engagement, whose mission is to promote community-based learning, civic partnerships, and applied research on public issues.  In 2012 the State Council of Higher Education of Virginia awarded him its Outstanding Faculty Award, the commonwealth’s highest honor for faculty members in higher education, given in recognition of superior accomplishment in teaching, research, and public service.

Hicks’s scholarship focuses on leadership, religion in politics and the workplace, and the ethical dimensions of economic issues, and he is a frequent commentator in the media on these and other topics.  He is the author of four books: Money Enough (Jossey-Bass, 2010); With God on All Sides (Oxford University Press, 2009); Religion and the Workplace (Cambridge University Press, 2003); and Inequality and Christian Ethics (Cambridge University Press, 2000). In addition, he edited, with Thad Williamson, Leadership and Global Justice (Palgrave Macmillan, 2012) and with Mark Valeri, Global Neighbors (Eerdmans, 2008). He is co-editor of the three-volume International Library of Leadership (Edward Elgar, 2006) and the author of numerous articles in peer-reviewed journals.

He received an AB degree magna cum laude with honors in economics from Davidson College, an MDiv summa cum laude from Duke University, and MA and PhD degrees in religion from Harvard University, where he studied with distinguished theologian Ronald Thiemann and Nobel Prize-winning economist Amartya Sen.

An award-winning teacher and author on ethics, religion, and leadership, Hicks has held visiting faculty positions at Union Presbyterian Seminary in Richmond and at the Harvard Divinity School. He is a former president of the Academy of Religious Leadership and former chair of the Religion and Social Sciences section of the American Academy of Religion.  

Hicks is a member of the Board of Directors of the Arts Association in Newton County and a member of the Board of Trustees of Agnes Scott College. 

A native of Indianapolis, he is married to Catherine L. Bagwell, who is professor of psychology at Oxford College. They have two children, Noah and Ada.



  • Leadership and Global Justice. Douglas A. Hicks and Thad Williamson, editors. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2012.
  • Money Enough: Everyday Practices for Living Faithfully in the Global Economy. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 2010.
  • With God on All Sides: Leadership in a Devout and Diverse America. New York: Oxford University Press, 2009.
  • Global Neighbors: Christian Faith and Moral Obligation in Today's Economy. Douglas A. Hicks and Mark Valeri, editors. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2008.
  • Modern Classics on Leadership (The International Library of Leadership/Elgar Mini Series). J. Thomas Wren, Douglas A. Hicks, and Terry L. Price, editors. Cheltenham Glos: Edward Elgar, 2006.
  • New Perspectives on Leadership (The International Library of Leadership/Elgar Mini Series). J. Thomas Wren, Douglas A. Hicks, and Terry L. Price, editors. Cheltenham Glos: Edward Elgar, 2006.
  • Traditional Classics on Leadership (The International Library of Leadership/Elgar Mini Series). J. Thomas Wren, Douglas A. Hicks, and Terry L. Price, editors. Cheltenham Glos: Edward Elgar, 2006.
  • Religion and the Workplace: Pluralism, Spirituality, Leadership. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2003.
  • Inequality and Christian Ethics. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2000.


Peer Reviewed Journal Articles

  • Hicks, Douglas A. “Inequality, Justice, and the Myth of Unsituated Market Exchange.” The Journal of Religious Ethics 47/2 (June 2019): 337-354.
  • Hicks, Douglas A. and Rachel Templeton. "Mapping Interfaith Leadership in Richmond, VA." The Journal of Religious Leadership 12/1 (spring 2013): 111–134.
  • Hicks, Douglas A. "Reframing the Economics of Pastoral Leadership." The Journal of Religious Leadership 8/1 (spring 2009): 73–95.
  • "Self-Interest, Deprivation, and Agency: Expanding the Capabilities Approach." The Journal of the Society of Christian Ethics 25/1 (spring 2005): 147–167.
  • "Religion and Respectful Pluralism in the Workplace: A Constructive Framework." The Journal of Religious Leadership 2/1 (spring 2003): 23–51.
  • "Spiritual and Religious Diversity in the Workplace: Implications for Leadership." The Leadership Quarterly 13/4 (October 2002): 379–396.
  • "Gender, Discrimination, and Capability: Insights from Amartya Sen." The Journal of Religious Ethics 30/1 (spring 2002): 137–154.
  • "Inequality, Globalization, and Leadership: 'Keeping Up with the Joneses' across National Boundaries." The Annual of the Society of Christian Ethics 21 (2001): 63–80.
  • "The Inequality-Adjusted Human Development Index: A Constructive Proposal." World Development 25/8 (August 1997): 1283–1298.
  • "The Taizé Community: Fifty Years of Prayer and Action." The Journal of Ecumenical Studies 29/2 (spring 1992): 202–214.

Book Chapters and Reviewed Conference Proceedings

  • Hicks, Douglas A. “Prosperity, Theology, and Economy.” In Pentecostalism and Prosperity: The Socio-economics of Global Renewal, ed. by Amos Yong and Katy Attanasi (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2012).
  • Hicks, Douglas A. "Making a Good Living." In On Our Way: Christian Practices for Living a Whole Life, ed. by Dorothy C. Bass and Susan R. Briehl, pp. 117–132. Nashville: Upper Room Books, 2010.
  • "Global Poverty and Bono’s Celebrity Activism: An Analysis of Moral Imagination and Motivation." In Global Neighbors: Christian Faith and Moral Obligation in Today’s Economy, ed. by Douglas A. Hicks and Mark Valeri, pp.43–62. Grand Rapids, MI: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 2008.
  • Douglas A. Hicks and Mark Valeri, "Critical Economic Engagement: On the Perennial and Novel Dimensions." In Global Neighbors: Christian Faith and Moral Obligation in Today's Economy, op. cit., pp. 248–264.
  • Hicks, Douglas A. "Public-Sector Leadership, Development, and Ethics: The State of the Literature and Central Questions for Future Work." In World Ethics Forum: Conference Proceedings, ed. by Charles Sampford and Carmel Connors, pp. 149–169. Queensland, Australia: The Institute for Ethics, Governance and Law (UN University, Griffith and Queensland University of Technology with the Australian National University), 2007.
  • "Ethical and Theological Challenges in Globalization." Proceedings of the Maryville Symposium: Conversations on Faith and the Liberal Arts, ed. by Ronald Wells, pp. 3–18. Maryville, TN: Maryville College, 2007.
  • "Inequalities, Agency, and Well-Being: Conceptual Linkages and Measurement Challenges in Development." In Understanding Human Well-Being, ed. by Mark McGillivray and Matthew Clarke, pp. 101–116. Tokyo: United Nations University Press, 2006.
  • Price, Terry L. and Douglas A. Hicks. "A Framework for a General Theory of Leadership Ethics." In Quest for a General Theory of Leadership, ed. by George R. Goethals and Georgia Sorenson, pp. 123–151. Northhampton, MA: Edward Elgar Publishing, 2006.
  • Hicks, Douglas A. "Ethical Diversity and the Leader's Religious Commitments." In The Quest for Moral Leaders: Essays on Leadership Ethics, ed. by Joanne B. Ciulla, Terry L. Price, and Susan E. Murphy, 45–61. Northampton, MA: Edward Elgar Publishing, 2005.
  • "The Hunger Index" and "Technical Note: The Hunger Index." In Hunger 2001: Foreign Aid That Works (Eleventh Annual Report on the State of World Hunger). Washington: Bread for the World Institute, 2001: 113–115, 132–133.

Additional Articles and Essays

  • Hicks, Douglas A., and Suzy M. Nelson. “Are You Ready to Work with Student Demonstrators?” University Business, March 2016 issue.
  • Hicks, Douglas A. "How Inequality is a Theological and Moral Issue." Interpretation: A Journal of Bible and Theology 69/4 (2015): 432–446.
  • Hicks, Douglas A. "Les Religions a la Feina: Gestió d’un potencial." (Translation from Catalan: "Religions at Work: Managing Their Power/Potential.") Dialogal: Quaderns de l’Associacio UNESCO per al Dialeg Interreligios. Winter 2011 no. 40.
  • Hicks, Douglas A. "Introduction: Charisma and Religious Leadership." Journal of Religious Leadership vol. 9 no. 2 (fall 2010), in production.
  • Hicks, Douglas A. and Mark Valeri. "Good Samaritans in a World Economy." Harvard Divinity Bulletin 37/2–3 (spring/summer 2009): 8–11.
  • Hicks, Douglas A. "Fragile Alliances: Overcoming Interfaith Suspicions," The Christian Century 126/5 (March 10, 2009): 30–35.
  • "Memo to the Candidates: What Leading a Devout and Diverse Nation Requires." The Chronicle of Higher Education, October 24, 2008, B14–15.
  • "Global Inequality." Christian Reflection: A Series in Faith and Ethics 24 (summer 2007):18–25. Center of Christian Ethics, Baylor University.
  • "Star Power: The Limits of Celebrity Activism." The Christian Century 123/6 (March 21, 2006): 23–24. Reprinted as "Celebrity Activism is Limited." In Can Celebrities Change the World?, ed. by Roman Espejo, pp. 20–24. Detroit: Greenhaven Press, 2009.
  • Fasching, Jillian M. and Douglas A. Hicks. "Famine as Leadership Failure." Concepts and Connections: A Publication for Leadership Educators 14/2 (2006). National Clearinghouse of Leadership Programs, University of Maryland.
  • Hicks, Douglas A. "The Author Replies" [response to David Craig, "Comment," The Journal of Religious Ethics 31/1]. The Journal of Religious Ethics 31/1 (spring 2003): 163–165.
  • "Paved with Good Intentions: The Politics of National Service." The Christian Century 119 (July 31/August 7, 2002): 10–11.
  • "The Customer is NOT Always Right: The Moral Perils of Market Principles." Sojourners 28/2 (March/April 1999): 24–27.
  • "Good News and the Poor: Lessons from Russia, Poland, and England." Duke Divinity News and Notes 8/1 (fall 1992).
  • and Terry L. Price. "An Ethical Challenge for Leaders and Scholars: What Do People Really Need?" Selected Proceedings of the Leaders/Scholars Association. James MacGregor Burns Academy of Leadership, 1999: 53–61.


  • Hicks, Douglas A. “Residential Liberal Arts Faculty and the Dissonance of Moving Online.” Inside Higher Ed. March 26, 2020.
  • Hicks, Douglas A. “Leadership Can and Should Be Taught in Colleges, Universities: Here's Why.” India Today. March 24, 2020.
  • Hicks, Douglas A. “Democrats Can Win Over Religious Voters—Here’s How.” The Hill. November 21, 2019.
  • Hicks, Douglas A. “What Is a “Whistleblower” and Who Can Be One: a Primer.” October 2, 2019.
  • Hicks, Douglas A. “Faith in Our Leaders is Vital for Democracy.” The Hill. January 11, 2019.
  • Hicks, Douglas A. “Commentary: Why We’ll Never Have Another Billy Graham.” Fortune. February 22, 2018.
  • Hicks, Douglas A. "Lincoln Still Has Lessons for America, Starting with Magnanimity," Atlanta Journal-Constitution, January 21, 2017.
  • Hicks, Douglas A. and Patrick D. Reynolds. "The Liberal Arts Contribution to edX." The Huffington Post, March 31, 2014.
  • Hicks, Douglas A. "How Should Christians Cope with 'Christmas Wars'?" Washington Post "On Faith" forum, December 8, 2010
  • "Mosque Controversy Showcases Failure to Lead American Public to Understanding," Washington Post "On Leadership" forum, August 23, 2010.
  • "Obama's Moral Challenge in Haiti," Richmond Times-Dispatch, January 24, 2010.
  • "Speech Should Be Free, But Not Cheap," Richmond Times-Dispatch, May 31, 2009, E1.
  • "President Can Welcome Religion in Public Life," Richmond Times-Dispatch, January 18, 2009, E1.
  • "Leadership in a Devout and Diverse City," Richmond Magazine Online, December 24, 2008
  • "Bill Maher's Funny, But He's Still a Fundamentalist," Religion News Service, October 14, 2008. Reprinted by Richmond Times-Dispatch, Presbyterian Outlook,
  • "Listen to What Candidates Say about Religion," Richmond Times-Dispatch, August 12, 2007. Re-issued by Religion News Service, August 22, 2007.
  • Wight, Jonathan B., and Douglas A. Hicks. "Disaster Relief: What Would Adam Smith Do?" The Christian Science Monitor January 18, 2005: 9. Reprinted in University of Richmond Alumni Magazine 67/3 (spring 2005): 48.
  • Hicks, Douglas A. "We Should Celebrate Diversity—Not Christmas—on Company Time." Fredericksburg (VA) Free Lance Star December 23, 2003: A9.
  • "Let’s Pledge to Respect Differing Beliefs." The Providence Journal July 6, 2002.
  • "Workplace Understanding without Secret Santa." The Providence Journal December 18, 2001.
  • "What Public Role for Religion?" University of Richmond Alumni Magazine 63/4 (Summer 2001): 48.
  • "Some Faith-Based Dangers" (letter to the editor). The Wall Street Journal February 27, 2001.
  • "A Human Face for Economics." Journal of Commerce October 27, 1998.
  • With Charles E. Ratliff, Jr. "Serving the Other Charlotte." Charlotte Observer October 26, 1990, 15A.