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Jonathan Tran, Ph.D.

Theologian / Professor / Ethicist

Associate Dean for Faculty in the Honors College and Associate Professor of Theology in Great Texts
Baylor University


Originally from Southern California, I joined Baylor University’s Religion Department after completing my graduate studies in theology and ethics at Duke University. Currently, I serve as Associate Dean of Baylor’s Honors College and Associate Professor of Theology within the Great Texts program.

I teach undergraduate and graduate courses while serving students, staff, and faculty in the Honors College, and my research examines the theological and political implications of human life in language.

Curriculum Vitae


Duke University, Department of Religion

Graduated in 2006.
Ph.D., Theology and Ethics

Duke University, Divinity School

Graduated in 2002.
M.Div., summa cum laude

University of California at Riverside

Graduated in 1994.
B.A., Phi Beta Kappa, Political Science


Associate Dean for Faculty, Honors College

Baylor University, 2023-Present

Associate Professor of Theology

Baylor University, 2023-Present

George W. Baines Chair of Religion

Baylor University, 2018-2022

Associate Professor of Religion

Baylor University, 2012-2022

Faculty Steward, Honors Residential College

Baylor University, 2015-2018

Assistant Professor of Religion

Baylor University, 2006-2012

Key Activities

  • Department of Religion Graduate Faculty (2009-2022)
  • University Tenure Committee (2012-2015), Chair (2014-2015)
  • Affiliate Faculty: Medical Humanities (2015-Present)
  • Baylor Center for Christian Philosophy (2015-Present)
  • Convener, Data Ethics Research Group, Baylor Ethics Initiative (2019-Present)

Significant & Endowed Lectures

  • 2022 Southern Methodist University Tate-Wilson Lecture
  • 2022 UC Berkeley Race, Religion, Democracy, and the American Dream Lecture
  • 2022 Belmont University Asian American Month Lecture
  • 2022 Fuller Theological Seminary AAPI Chapel Lecture
  • 2021 Society of Christian Ethics Plenary Panel Address
  • 2017 Baylor University Fall Academic Convocation, “Finding Love in College”
  • 2017 Baylor University Collins Outstanding Professor Award Address, “My Life with Students: Wittgensteinian Thoughts on Baylor Students”
  • 2016 Fellowship for Protestant Ethics Inaugural Keynote Lectures, “The Case for and of Protestant Christian Ethics”
  • 2015 Kendrick-Poerschke Memorial Lecture at Furman University, “Drone Dreaming Along the Border: Trump, Immigration, and Rhetorics of Nostalgia”
  • 2015 Asian American Heritage Lectures at Seattle Pacific University
  • 2014 Leuschner Lectures, Seventh & James Baptist Church, “The End of Words: Bodies, Animals and Language” (October 22, October 29, November 5, and November 12)
  • 2013 “The Difference Christ Makes: Celebrating the Life, Work, and Friendship of Stanley Hauerwas” Plenary Address at Duke Divinity School, Duke University, “Anne and the Difficulty of Hauerwas’ Church”
  • 2012 The T.B. Maston Lecture in Christian Ethics, George Truett Theological Seminary, “The Audacity of Hope and the Violence of Peace: Obama, War and Christianity? Christian Reflections on Obama’s Wars”
  • 2009 Institute for the Study of Asian American Christianity Inaugural Symposium Keynote Lectures, “The Future of Asian American Theology”


Series Senior Co-Editor

AAR/OUP “Reflection and Theory in the Study of Religion” Series

Stanford University Press “Encountering Traditions” Series

Contributing Editor

Christian Century; Marginalia (Los Angeles Review of Books)

Review Editor

Marginalia (Los Angeles Review of Books): Philosophy, Religion, and


Editorial Board

Journal of the Society of Christian Ethics (2013-2014); Journal of Religious

Ethics (2021-Present)


Book proposals and manuscripts

Baylor University Press, Fordham University Press, Georgetown University Press, Oxford University Press, Yale University Press, and Stanford University Press.

Journal articles

Journal of the Society of Christian Ethics, Journal of Religious Ethics, Modern Theology, Political Theology, etc.

Guild Service

Board of Directors (2013-2017)

Society of Christian Ethics Executive committee (2014-2015)

Co-Convener (2010-2012)

Asian and Asian American Working Group (Society of Christian Ethics)

Board of Directors (2016-2020)

Ekklesia Project

Steering Committee (2021-Present)

Ethics Unit, American Academy of Religion

Societies & Seminars

Society of Christian Ethics

American Academy of Religion