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Stockdale Center for Ethical Leadership
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Ethics Fellowship Programs


One of the Center’s cornerstone programs is the Fellows program.  The Fellows program is a unique and multidisciplinary effort that brings together academics and military professionals to study a specific topic in the field of military ethics and leadership.  The Fellows meet together for a weekly seminar, host guest speakers, conduct independent and joint research, travel to meet with other experts in the field, publish their findings in journals and books, produce instructional materials for the Academy curriculum, and make presentations at the Academy and other national and international forums.

Each year, the Center advertises widely for civilian candidates interested in the Fellows Program.  The Distinguished Chair in Ethics and the Center’s Director of Research review all submitted applications.  The Center selects three Resident Fellows each year. The Fellows program is funded my Mrs. Susan Rorer Whitby on behalf of the USNA Class of 1958, the Class of 1962 and also by Mr. and Mrs. Frank Behm on behalf of the Class of 1978. This Center program has been in existence since Academic Year 2000-2001. 

 Impact on the Naval Academy and Other Institutions:

Research accomplished by the Fellows makes a significant impact on education at the Naval Academy and policy making within our national government. 

Fellows interact with midshipmen in the classroom, both as adjunct instructors and seminar leaders, and provide professional development opportunities for instructors and professors in the Department of Leadership, Ethics, and Law (LEL).  As Fellows tackle emerging issues in military ethics and leadership, they are able to develop case studies and other instructional materials to support the core and elective courses offered by LEL and take on a mentoring role for midshipmen interested in the topics pursued by the Fellows cohort.

The Fellows research is also designed to inform the highest levels of naval service leadership about emerging ethics and leadership challenges for the foreseeable future.  At the conclusion of the research effort, the Center hosts the McCain Conference where the Fellows are joined by military and civilian educators from the nation’s service academies and war colleges and other thought leaders to discuss and debate the research conducted at the Naval Academy. Policy issues and recommendations emerging from the McCain conference are shared with the Secretary of the Navy, Chief of Naval Operations and the Commandant of the Marine Corps.

Additionally, because of the participation of the Fellows in high visibility conferences and meetings and the publications they produce, their work enhances the influence and prestige of the Stockdale Center and the Naval Academy worldwide.

 Academic Year 2017-18 Research Effort

This year’s research and McCain Conference will examine ethical issues associated with failed states and civil wars--revolutions, coups, secessions, migrations, and the relevance of these for interventions, etc. More upcoming.

In addition to this year's fellow the following individuals are participating in this year’s work:

-          Dr. Ed Barrett, Director of Strategy and Research, Stockdale Center, U.S. Naval Academy

-          Dr. David Luban, the Distinguished Chair of Ethics, Stockdale Center, U.S. Naval Academy

-          Dr. Michael Skerker, Faculty, LEAD Department, U.S. Naval Academy


If you are interested in applying for this opportunity during the 2018-2019 academic year, please apply here.

Current Fellows:

Funded by USNA Classes of 1958, 1962 and 1978. Also made possible by the generosity of Frank J. Behm (USNA '78) and Andrea K. Behm

September 2017 - May 2018

Dr. David Lefkowitz

  • Dr. Doyle Hodges: Doyle Hodges is a retired Naval officer who commanded two ships and served as an Aide and advisor to senior Naval leaders.  A 1992 graduate of the US Naval Academy, he holds Master’s degrees from the University of Maryland at College Park, the US Naval War College, and Princeton University.  He completed his doctorate at Princeton in June, 2018.  Doyle and his wife live in Alexandria, VA with their two dogs.


  • Dr. Chris Eberle: Dr. Eberle is Professor of Philosophy at the United States Naval Academy where he has taught since 2001.  He specializes in the areas of religion, politics, and war.  He has published two books on related topics: Religious Conviction in Liberal Politics (Cambridge, 2002) and Justice and the Just War Tradition (Routledge, 2016).  He has published many scholarly and popular articles, including: “Let a Thousand Flowers Bloom: Religious Reasons in Public Life,” Journal of Legal Commentary (2007); “Religious Conviction in the Profession of Arms,” Journal of Military Ethics (2012); “Just Cause and Cyber War,” Journal of Military Ethics(2013); “Rights, Goods, and Proportionate War,” The Monist (2016).  He has been invited to speak in various universities, including Trinity College, Dublin (2006), University of Virginia (2007), Notre Dame University (2009), University of Valencia (2010), LUISS University (Rome, 2011), Yale University (2011), University of Turin (2014), Oxford University (2017). He is also Faculty Representative for the USNA Men’s Basketball team. 

Dr. Adam Betz

  • Dr. Adam Betz: Dr. Betz is a Junior Fellow in the Stockdale Center. He received a B.A. in philosophy from Illinois Wesleyan University, an M.A. in philosophy from University of Colorado, Boulder, and a Ph.D. in Philosophy from University of Illinois at Chicago (dissertation defended June 29, 2016). Dr. Betz has had an active research agenda this past year, preparing papers for presentations and journal submission, work which will continue through the summer and subsequent academic year at the Naval Academy. 
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