WASHINGTON (May 21, 1998) -- Gerard Powers, a policy advisor in the U.S. Catholic Conference Office of International Justice and Peace (IJP), has been named the new director of the Office.
Msgr. Dennis M. Schnurr, USCC General Secretary, announced the appointment, which is effective immediately.
Powers has served as a policy advisor in IJP since 1987, specializing in arms control issues, religion and conflict, religious liberty, European affairs, and the ethics of the use of force. As the Director of IJP, which is part of the Department of Social Development and World Peace, Powers will continue to advise the Bishops on issues of war and peace, arms control and trade, human rights, sustainable development and other issues of international justice and peace.
He succeeds Jesuit Father Drew Christiansen, who will continue to serve as a consultant to IJP on the Middle East and other issues.
"Jerry Powers brings deep knowledge and strong commitment to Catholic social teaching, years of outstanding service to the Conference, and a thoughtful and balanced approach to the moral dimensions of foreign affairs," said Msgr. Schnurr in praising Powers' selection.
In addition to his work in IJP, Powers has been an adjunct faculty member at the National Law Center of George Washington University and at the Oblate School of Theology, both in Washington, DC. He has written numerous articles on religion, ethics, and international affairs, and is co-editor (with Father Christiansen and Robert Hennemeyer) of Peacemaking: Moral and Policy Challenges for a New World (1994).
He is a member of the California Bar Association and the American Society of International Law.
Powers received a law degree and a master's degree in theology from the University of Notre Dame, and bachelor's degree from Princeton University.
He began his work for the Church in peace and justice issues in 1980 as a member of the Jesuit Volunteer Corps in San Diego.