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Kenneth Townsend


Yale Law School, J.D.

Yale Divinity School, Master of Arts, Religion

University of Oxford, Master of Philosophy, Political Theory

Millsaps College, Bachelor of Arts, English and Political Science


Spending time with family & coaching youth baseball

Hiking, basketball, and exercising

Ethical formation of professionals and character based leadership development

Pluralism, diversity, law, and religion



Kenneth Townsend is the Executive Director of Leadership and Character in the Professional Schools, Teaching Professor in the Wake Forest School of Law, and a Presidential Higher Education Fellow. A recipient of the Truman Scholarship for Public Service and the Rhodes Scholarship, he earned a B.A. from Millsaps College, an M.Phil. from the University of Oxford, and a J.D. and M.A.R. from Yale University. Prior to joining Wake Forest, he worked at Millsaps College as Special Assistant to the President, Assistant Professor of Political Science, and Founding Executive Director of the Institute for Professional and Civic Engagement and, before Millsaps, as a Fellow in the University of Mississippi’s Barksdale Honors College and Lott Leadership Institute. A licensed attorney and frequent commentator on public affairs, he has taught courses in ethics, political theory, public policy, and constitutional law at Millsaps College, University of Mississippi, and Yale University. He teaches “Professional Responsibility” and “Leadership and Character in the Law” at the Wake Forest School of Law. His research focuses on the relationship between law and morality, leadership in the law, and the ethical formation of professionals.

Kenneth Townsend

Executive Director of Leadership and Character in the Professional Schools and Ethical & Inclusive Leadership Faculty

Wake Forest University

Leadership, Professional Ethics, Constitutional Law, Legal and Political Theory, Professional Identity Formation