Welcome to USCIRF

Dr. Daniel Mark, Chairman

Dr. Daniel I. Mark, assistant professor of Political Science at Villanova UniversityDaniel Mark is an assistant professor of political science at Villanova University, where he has taught since 2013. He teaches political theory, philosophy of law, American political thought, and politics and religion. At Villanova, he is a faculty associate of the Matthew J. Ryan Center for the Study of Free Institutions and the Public Good, and he holds the rank of battalion professor in Villanova’s Navy Reserve Officers’ Training Corps unit. He is also on the steering committee for the Villanova Political Theology Project and on the graduate committee of the Department of Political Science. He has served as the faculty adviser to the mock trial team and to the men’s club lacrosse team and as a mentor in the university’s Faith and Learning Scholars Program.

For the 2017-18 academic year, Dr. Mark is on leave from Villanova University as a visiting fellow in the Department of Political Science at the University of Notre Dame under the sponsorship of the Tocqueville Program for Inquiry Into Religion and Public Life as well as the Notre Dame Institute for Advanced Study; the Program on Church, State, and Society; and the Center for Ethics and Culture. In the 2015-16 academic year, he was on sabbatical as a visiting fellow in the Department of Politics at Princeton University under the sponsorship of the department’s James Madison Program in American Ideals and Institutions.

Dr. Mark is a fellow of the Witherspoon Institute in Princeton, NJ, and works with the Tikvah Fund in New York. He is an affiliated scholar of the James Wilson Institute on Natural Rights and the American Founding in Washington, DC, and he has taught at the Straus Center for Torah and Western Thought at Yeshiva University. Dr. Mark is also a member of the advisory council of CanaVox. He has served as an assistant editor of the journal Interpretation and is a contributor to the Arc of the Universe blog.

Dr. Mark speaks frequently for a wide variety of groups, including the Acton Institute, the US Military Academy (West Point), the American Enterprise Institute, the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, the Love and Fidelity Network, the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, Opus Dei, the Agora Institute, and Chabad. In September, 2015, Daniel spoke at the World Meeting of Families, a triennial event organized by the Catholic Church, which drew 20,000 participants to Philadelphia. Other appearances have included speeches at Ave Maria University, Arizona State University, Baylor University, Brigham Young University, Colorado Christian University, Eastern University, the University of Notre Dame, and the Mount Academy, the Bruderhof (Anabaptist) high school in upstate New York.

In addition to his academic writing, Dr. Mark has published on topics related to international religious freedom in US News & World ReportInvestor’s Business Daily, Foreign AffairsThe Hill, and the Philadelphia Inquirer, and he has appeared on CNN, Al Jazeera America, CBS radio in Philadelphia, KNUS radio in Denver, and Relevant Radio, among other outlets.

He holds a BA (magna cum laude), MA, and PhD from the Department of Politics at Princeton University. He wrote his dissertation under the direction of Professor Robert P. George on the subject of “Authority and Legal Obligation.”  There, he participated in the Program in Law and Public Affairs and the Penn-Princeton Bioethics Forum. He was also affiliated with the James Madison Program in American Ideals and Institutions and served as coordinator of its Undergraduate Fellows Forum.

Before graduate school, Dr. Mark spent four years as a high school teacher in New York City, and he received the New Jersey Department of Education Commissioner’s Distinguished Teacher Candidate Award while earning his teaching certification.

Dr. Mark was appointed to the Commission on May 9, 2014 by then-Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-OH) and reappointed on May 16, 2016 by Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R-WI) for a two-year term expiring in May 2018.