Current Projects

Beyond undergraduate teaching and working with graduate students, I am primarily engaged in three current projects:


Faith and the Fire of the Public Life Table of Contents

  1. Current book manuscript on the democratic engagement of 40+ religious congregations (liberal and moderate Protestant, Roman Catholic, historic African American, Latino and Black Pentecostal, Jewish, and Unitarian) in 13 American cities. Can civic engagement be a source of vitality, congregational development, and spiritual renewal within faith communities? If so, through what practices and dynamics? If not, why not? What does this mean for the future of democracy in America?  

Central American network for research on religion & democracy:

Working in close partnership with the Universidad Centramercana “Jose Simeón Cañas” (UCA) in El Salvador to establish long-term research capacity on religion, politics, and civil society in Central America. The project is led by UCA’s Instituto Universitario de Opinión Pública (IUDOP) in San Salvador and involves research teams led by Dr. Claudia Dary in Guatemala,  Dr. Mario Sanchez in Nicaragua, and Carmen Guevara in El Salvador. Principal investigators are Jeannette Aguilar at IUDOP/UCA  and Richard Wood at UNM; Project Coordinator is Karla Rodriguez at IUDOP/UCA.

University Governance:

  1. Currently working with a variety of elected and informal faculty leaders to reinvigorate the faculty’s role in shared governance at the University of New Mexico. As co-chairperson of the Committee on Governance, helped lead major general faculty meetings in 2008 and 2009 that called for increased accountability within the University. Serving as president of the UNM Faculty Senate in 2010-2011.  

Other writing:

  1. Currently finalizing a research article on faith-based democratic organizing in Central America (co-authored with doctoral student Stacy Keogh) and a book chapter on the role of public Catholicism in the United States.

UNIVERSITY GOVERNANCEUNIVERSITY_GOVERNANCE.htmlhttp://SOUTHWEST_INSTITUTE_ON_RELIGION_AND_CIVIL_SOCIETY/Southwest_Institute_on_Religion_and_Civil_Society_at_UNM.htmlshapeimage_2_link_0
COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT COMMUNITY_ENGAGEMENT.htmlhttp://SOUTHWEST_INSTITUTE_ON_RELIGION_AND_CIVIL_SOCIETY/Southwest_Institute_on_Religion_and_Civil_Society_at_UNM.htmlshapeimage_3_link_0
RESEARCH & WRITINGRESEARCH_AND_WRITING.htmlhttp://SOUTHWEST_INSTITUTE_ON_RELIGION_AND_CIVIL_SOCIETY/Southwest_Institute_on_Religion_and_Civil_Society_at_UNM.htmlshapeimage_5_link_0