Jacqueline Pfeffer Merrill is director of the BPC Campus Free Expression Project. She works with senior college leaders to provide consultative assistance and expertise in approaches that will support a campus culture that is diverse, inclusive, and open to robust intellectual exchange. In this work, she convenes closed and public events. In partnership with BPC Action, she engages staff of U.S. Congress members to help Congress better understand that colleges and universities, not government, are the best stewards of campus free expression.
Prior to joining BPC, Merrill was the executive director of the Fund for Academic Renewal, a program of the American Council of Trustees and Alumni (ACTA). Before leading ACTA’s Fund for Academic Renewal, Merrill served as ACTA’s vice president of development. Earlier in her career, Merrill served on the faculties of St. John’s College (Annapolis), known for its Great Books curriculum, and the College of William & Mary. She has also taught at Duke University, the University of Calgary, Humboldt Universität zu Berlin, and in the college program at Maryland’s only prison for women. Her articles and essays have appeared in venues including Chronicle of Higher Education, Inside Higher Ed, and Perspectives on Political Science. She is a contributing editor at Paideia Times, the quarterly news outlet for higher education trustees.
Merrill is a trustee of the American Academy for Liberal Education and Students for Free Expression and serves on the Advisory Board of the Stephen S. Smith Center at Xavier University. She was a trustee and president of the Advocates for the Goucher Prison Education Partnership.
Merrill earned her BA (First Class Honours) from the University of Calgary and her M.A. and Ph.D. from Duke University.