Chester Gillis

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Chester L. Gillis, Ph.D., is the former Dean of Georgetown College, Professor in the Department of Theology, and the founding Director of the Program on the Church and Interreligious Dialogue in the Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs at Georgetown University. In 2017, Gillis retired as Dean of Georgetown College.[1]

Research and publication[edit]

Chester Gillis' research interests include comparative religion and contemporary Roman Catholicism. He is the author of A Question of Final Belief: John Hick's Pluralistic Theory of Salvation (1989), Pluralism: A New Paradigm for Theology (1993), Roman Catholicism in America, [Catholic Book Club Book of the Month Selection, July 1999], Catholic Faith in America (2003), and editor of The Political Papacy (2006), as well as numerous articles, book chapters, and encyclopedia entries. He is co-editor of the Columbia University series Religion and Politics.

Academic leadership[edit]

Gillis served as Chair of the Department of Theology from 2001 to 2006, the Core Faculty of the Liberal Studies Program from 1998 to 2008, and Director of the Doctor of Liberal Studies from 2006 to 2008. He received the Excellence in Teaching Award from the Liberal Studies Program at Georgetown (2005). He also served on the Executive Faculty at Georgetown and is a member of the Jesuit Honor Society Alpha Sigma Nu.

He has chaired the Arts and Humanities Committee for the Heinz Awards and served on the selection committee for The Louisville Institute's grants. He chaired the national Teaching Award Committee for the Association of Graduate Liberal Studies and served on the editorial board of Confluence: Journal of Graduate Liberal Studies. A member of the American Theological Society, he served on the Academic Relations Task Force of the American Academy of Religion.

Frequently consulted by the media about contemporary issues in religion, in particular, Roman Catholicism, Dean Gillis has appeared on Face the Nation, Meet the Press, The News Hour, ABC, NBC, and CBS Evening News, Good Morning America, Nightline, and National Public Radio and is a contributor to the Washington Post/Newsweek website On Faith.

He holds degrees in Philosophy and Religious Studies from the Catholic University at Leuven in Belgium and earned his Ph.D. from the University of Chicago.



  1. ^ Lynch, Jack; Zhu, William (March 18, 2016). "Gillis Steps Down As Georgetown College Dean". The Hoya. Retrieved October 5, 2017. 

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