ASSISTANT PROFESSOR OF PHILOSOPHY
& AFFILIATE PROFESSOR OF MEDICAL HUMANITIES
I work primarily in metaethics and normative ethics (in the virtue tradition). My next book project develops and defends a pluralist Aristotelian account of human goodnesses and virtues. Other of my teaching experience and research interests lie in the history of ethics, political and legal philosophy, bioethics, Aristotle, and philosophy of religion. My book, God and Morality (Cambridge University Press) is available online and for order in print here.
From 2023 to 2025 I will serve as a co-investigator on a $2.8 million grant, Illuminating Theological Inquiry and Christian Ethics Through Training in Psychological Science (PI: Devan Stahl, JTF Project #62691). Learn more about applying for Phase 1 on our webpage here. I am also co-organizer with Tim Pawl of the Philosophy of Patience Symposium, part of the "Galvanizing the Psychological, Philosophical, and Theological Study and Practice of Patience" grant (PI: Sarah Schnitker and Juliette Ratchford, TRT).
From 2019 to 2021 I worked with Dr. Krista Mehari (Psychology, University of South Alabama), Dr. Joseph Currier (Psychology, University of South Alabama), and Marie Chastang (United Methodist Inner City Mission) on an interdisciplinary project to develop virtue-promotive interventions for adolescents in an under-resourced urban context. Learn more about our program, Empowered, here.
I have co-organized the annual Political Philosophy and Religion Workshop, which seeks to promote scholarship intersecting philosophy of religion and political science, religion, theology, and law. Please email me or Marilie Coetsee if you are interested in participating.
I joined the philosophy faculty at Baylor University in fall of 2019 and became an Affiliate Professor in Medical Humanities in 2020.
I earned my PhD in philosophy at Georgetown University, and then was a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Notre Dame on the Hope and Optimism Project. In fall 2016, I joined the faculty of philosophy at the University of South Alabama where I held a joint appointment in the College of Medicine; I developed and delivered a virtue-based Bioethics curriculum for first through third year medical students.
I was born and raised in Miami, Florida. This (mostly) explains my love of the water, the Miami Heat, and Cuban food. I grew to love biology and so left Miami's beaches for college with aspirations to go into cancer research.
I attended Baylor University where I earned a BA in 2010 in University Scholars -- an interdisciplinary program in the honors college -- and met my now husband (who also did a PhD in philosophy). I started off studying biochemistry and music composition, then tried out classics and creative writing, and finally ended up in philosophy. Those early interests have made their way back into my work in bioethics and ancient philosophy, confirming my conviction that not all who wander (academically) are lost.
Below is a list of courses I've taught or am teaching. Click on a course title to see a copy of the syllabus or course website (for current classes).
Paradoxes in Aristotle & Plato
Political and Social Thought (School of Foreign Service, discussion leader)
Philosophy of Law (discussion leader)
Intro to Philosophy (discussion leader)
Political Philosophy (spring '19)
Intro to Philosophy (spring '19)
Bioethics Thread - College of Medicine (M1- M3 years)
Baylor has outstanding graduate students, and I have the distinct privilege of directing a few of their dissertations. Check out their work here:
I am the faculty advisor for the Baylor Bioethics Bowl team. Baylor competed for the first time this year in the online National Bioethics Bowl and tied with the first place team in number of points scored.
As faculty advisor for the South Alabama Bioethics Club, I organized and hosted two National Bioethics Bowl competitions. In 2018, our team placed 5th at Nationals.
Below are publications and works in progress. I'm happy to send drafts of works in progress or under review upon request. (Titles changed for works under review)
God and Morality. Cambridge University Press (April 2019).
How Aristotelians Can Make Faith a Virtue, Ethical Theory and Moral Practice (2016):1-17
Does Hope Morally Vindicate Faith? International Journal of Philosophy of Religion (2017): 1-19
Limited Epistocracy and Political Inclusion, Episteme (2018):1-21
Is the Atonement Necessary or Fitting? Religious Studies (2019):1-9
Hoping for Metanormative Realism. Erkenntnis (2019):1-15
A Thomistic View of Conscience and Guilt, in The Moral Psychology of Guilt, eds. Bradford Cokelet and John Corey Maley, New York: Rowman and Littlefield (2019):243-268
Hope in Christianity, in The Moral Psychology of Hope, eds. Titus Stahl and Claudia Blosser, New York: Rowman and Littlefield (2019).
Aristotle, Wiley-Blackwell Encyclopedia of Philosophy of Religion, eds. Stewart Goetz and Charles Taliaferro (2020).
Fluctuating Maximal God, (with A. Lancaster-Thomas and M. Moravec) International Journal for Philosophy of Religion (2020).
Varieties of Theism and Explanations of Moral Realism, European Journal of Philosophy of Religion (2021): 25-50.
Conscience, in Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy, eds. Tim Crane and Elinor Mason (under contract).
Surprising Empirical Directions for Thomistic Moral Psychology, (with Krista Mehari), American Catholic Philosophical Quarterly (2022)
Against Reductivist Character Realism (with Alina Beary), Philosophical Psychology (2022)
Morality and Religion, (with William Wainwright), Bloomsbury Companion to Ethics, 2nd Edition, ed. Christian Miller (forthcoming)
The Primacy of Hope in Human Flourishing (with Krista Mehari), The Monist (forthcoming)
Impact of a Participatory Action Approach to Virtue Promotion Among Early Adolescents (with Krista Mehari, Marie Chastang, Joseph Currier, and Megan Blanton), Journal of Positive Psychology (forthcoming)
Transdisciplinary Participatory Action Research: How Philosophers, Psychologists, and Practitioners Can Work (Well) Together to Promote Adolescent Character Development, (with Krista Mehari, Marie Chastang, and Sarah Schnitker), Journal of Positive Psychology (2023).
The Divine Friendship Theory of Moral Motivation, Faith and Philosophy (forthcoming)
The Argument from Good Friendship to Character Realism, Journal of Ethics (forthcoming)
projects in progress (titles changed if under review)
Divine Ideas, Goodness, and Gooddnesses (draft) with Tom Ward
Theistic Ethics Workshop, 7/10/20, Princeton Rutgers Philosophy of Religion colloquium, March 2021
More Relative Goodness (under review)
Pacific APA, 4/922, ACPA 10/22
Growing Up and Acting for the Right Reasons (under review)
Virtual Metaethics Colloquium, April 2021.
Focal Meaning & Practical Reasons (draft)
Women in Philosophy in the Chicago Area Workshop, Northwestern University, 12/1/16
How to Get Realistic About Moral Reasons without Losing Your Mind Dependence (in progress)
RoME, University of Colorado--Boulder, 8/18; South Carolina Philosophical Association meeting, College of Charleston, 2/24/12
Rethinking Moral Objectivity (draft)
Atlantic Regional Philosophical Association Meeting, 10/5/14
normative ethics and moral psychology
Alienation and Love of Enemy
Res Philosophica Conference, 3/2023
Inclusivizing Aristotle’s Theory of Virtue with Alexandra Romanyshyn and Hilary Yancey (in progress)
Baylor Flourishing Brown Bag, 9/21
How to Love Your Enemy (in progress)
Notre Dame Workshop on Love, Virtue, and Forgiveness, 5/22, Society for Christian Philosophers Midwest Meeting, 10/22
Repurposing As a Means to Self Transcendence with Catherine Marple and Sarah Schnitker (revise and resubmit)
Hope As a Norm of Tough Love (draft)
Developing Virtue-Promotive Interventions for Adolescents through Participatory Action Research ($205,000 grant through Character Strengths Interventions in Adolescents project, 2019-2021)
Normative Hope and Didactic Blame with Colin Hickey (draft)
Rocky Mountain Ethics Congress, August 10, 2017; Moral Failure and Recovery Workshop, June 2017; The Nature and Norms of Hope Conference, Cornell University, April 2017
political philosophy & applied ethics
Loving Your Enemies in a Deteriorating Democracy (draft)
MANCEPT, University of Manchester, 9/8/2022, Political Philosophy and Religion Workshop, 12/2/2022
Combatting the Opioid Crisis: A Shared Responsibility Account (draft)
Opioids and Ethics Conference, University of South Alabama, 11/18, November 11/17
Solving the Priority Problem for the Capabilities Approach (draft)
Human Development and Capabilities Association meeting, Athens, GE, 9/3/14
Anscombe on Epistemic and Practical Authority (revise and resubmit)
University College Dublin, 3/11
philosophy of religion
Divine Love and Omnirationality (in progress)
Alabama Philosophical Society, 9/17
Divine Love of Enemy (in progress)
ancient and medieval philosophy
Aristotle on Friendship and Loving the Good Haplos (in progress)
Errors of Reason in De Anima iii.3 (Canadian Colloquium for Ancient Philosophy, University of British Columbia, 5/4/14)
The Grounds of Moral Obligations in Aquinas's Natural Law Ethics (under review)
Notre Dame Moral Theology Colloquium, invited 2/17/16
Questions in Philosophy of Religion BYU student panel (spring 2022)
Must God Explain Morality? Tipsy Orthodoxy (spring 2022)
God and Morality Christian Scholars Review Blog (summer 2021)
Does God Explain Morality? The Analytic Christian (spring 2021)
God and Moral Motivation The Analytic Christian (fall 2021)
Building Community and Engaging Students Remotely Baylor Connections (spring 2020)
Dangerous Despair, Logoi (Spring 2016)
The Role of Faith in Being Reasonable, Patheos (Summer 2017)
If God Does Not Exist, Why Be a Moral Person? Capturing Christianity podcast (Spring 2019)