Stanley Carlson-Thies is the Founder and Senior Director of the Institutional Religious Freedom Alliance (IRFA), a division of the Center for Public Justice. As part of this role, he convenes the Coalition to Preserve Religious Freedom, a multi-faith alliance of social-service, education, and religious freedom organizations that advocates for the religious freedom of faith-based organizations to Congress and the federal government. In addition he is also a Senior Fellow at the Canadian think tank Cardus.
From 2009-2010 he served on a task force of President Obama’s Advisory Council on Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships, helping to draft recommendations on how to clarify the church-state rules that apply to federal funding of social-service providers, and has consulted with federal departments and several states.
He served with the White House Office of Faith-Based & Community Initiatives from its inception in February 2001 until mid-May 2002. He assisted with writing “Unlevel Playing Field: Barriers to Participation by Faith-Based and Community Organizations in Federal Social Service Programs,” a report released by the White House in August 2001, and “Rallying the Armies of Compassion,” the initial blueprint for President George W. Bush’s faith and community agenda.
Previously, he was Director of Social Policy Studies for CPJ and directed CPJ’s project to track the implementation and impact of the Charitable Choice provision of the 1996 federal welfare reform law. Following his term in the White House, he returned to CPJ as the Director of Faith-based Policy Studies.
He received the William Bentley Ball Life and Religious Liberty Defense Award from the Center for Law and Religious Freedom and the Christian Legal Society in October 2004. He was named as one of 12 advocates who are “reinterpreting God and country” by the National Journal in May 2004. He holds a doctorate in political science from the University of Toronto. His dissertation is on the role of Protestants and Catholics in the development of Dutch politics in the 19th and 20th centuries. Besides the United States, he has lived in Canada, the Netherlands, and Japan, where he was born of missionary parents. He lives in Annapolis, Maryland, with his wife, Christiane. They are the proud parents of Simon.
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