Bernard Schlager, PhD, Named New Dean of PSR

June 3, 2013

It was announced on Monday, June 3, 2013, that Bernard Schlager, PhD, will succeed Tat-siong Benny Liew as Pacific School of Religion's Dean & Vice President for Academic Affairs. Schlager has been at PSR since 2000 where he is Associate Professor of Cultural and Historical Studies; he is also a member of the Core Doctoral Faculty at the Graduate Theological Union (GTU). In addition, he has been Executive Director of the Center for Lesbian & Gay Studies in Religion and Ministry (CLGS) for the last 5 years.

PSR President Riess Potterveld said, “Bernie is a respected teacher on campus and a leader among the faculty. As PSR works at developing new educational programs, Bernie brings a wonderful combination of seasoned experience and openness to creative experimentation.”

Dr. Schlager received his PhD from Yale University in medieval history and Latin American colonial history and has taught at The University of New Hampshire, Trinity College (Hartford), Middlebury College, and Yale. His research interests include the history of Christianity, LGBTQ pastoral care, queer studies, and medieval religious and social history. He has published scholarly articles on ancient church history, medieval hagiography, the history of sexuality, and the history of education, and he co-authored the book Ministry Among God’s Queer Folk: LGBT Pastoral Care (2007) with David Kundtz.

He has written for The Huffington Post and been interviewed by NBC, KQED, The New York Times, and the Chicago Tribune. He has presented lectures and workshops throughout the United States. Listen to some of his recent interviews about the election of Pope Francis here.

Professor Schlager was one of the original staff members of CLGS when it was founded in 2000. Since then, he has held the positions of program director and interim deputy director before becoming executive director in 2009. He currently directs development and advancement work for the Center, teaches in the Certificate in Sexuality and Religion Program (CSR) program at PSR, and serves as an editorial consultant for the CLGS/Pilgrim Press Book series.

In accepting this appointment Schlager said, “I look forward to working collaboratively with PSR faculty, board members, staff, students, and alums as we build upon the seminary’s long and rich tradition of academic excellence, bold pastoral leadership, and social entrepreneurship to reinvigorate theological education for a new day and a new world.”

Dr. Schlager shares three sons and one grandson with his partner Brian Byrnes who is President & CEO of The Santa Fe Community Foundation (www.santafecf.org).