Joseph C. Hough Jr., 1959 B.D.,1965 Ph.D.

2007Distinction in Theological Education

Joseph C. Hough, Jr., has served since 1999 as president of New York's Union Theological Seminary, where he is William E. Dodge Professor of Social Ethics. On his watch, Union successfully completed a $39.6 million campaign in 2004 and developed a strategic plan that has made the Seminary fiscally viable while invigorating academic programs.

Hough played a major role in establishing the Henry Luce III Chair, an important new endowed chair in Reformation Church History and in securing full funding for two existing chairs: The Reinhold Niebuhr Chair in Social Ethics and The Paul Tillich Chair of Theology, World Religions, and Culture.

He began his career as an associate minister, at the First Baptist Church in Clarksville, Tennessee and is now an ordained minister in the United Church of Christ. His teaching and research interests are in social ethics, theological education, the church and ministry. Hough is the author, co-author, or editor of several books, including Christian Identity and Theological Education; Beyond Clericalism; The Congregation as a Focus for Theological Education; Theology and the University; and Black Power and White Protestants. He is frequently called on to speak to media and public gatherings as a strong voice for religious tolerance.

Hough formerly served as dean of Vanderbilt University Divinity School and dean of the Claremont School of Theology. Honors include a Doctor of Divinity from Wake Forest University, the Centennial Medal for Distinguished Service from Claremont, and the Joshua Award from the Jewish Federation Council.

He earned his undergraduate degree from Wake Forest University, and his Ph. D. degree from Yale University.

Hough has been married to Heidi Nussbaumer for forty-seven years, and they have two sons and four grandchildren.