Jacqueline Pfeffer Merrill

Jacqueline Pfeffer Merrill

Jacqueline Pfeffer Merrill is a program officer at the American Council of Trustees and Alumni. She has been an adviser to Washington think tanks and educational nonprofit organizations. Prior to her work in the nonprofit sector, Jacqueline served on the faculties of St. John's College and the College of William & Mary. She has published articles about political philosophy, social issues, and bioethics in journals such as The New Atlantis, Society, and Philanthropy.

Jacqueline earned her M.A. and Ph.D. in political science from Duke University and her B.A., also in political science, from The University of Calgary.

Jacqueline is a board member for the Maryland Correctional Institution for Women College Program Foundation, and she has taught in the college program at Maryland's only prison for women. She lives with her husband and their children in Silver Spring, Maryland.


  • The Ebola outbreak and the lessons of literature

    This year’s horrifying Ebola outbreak raises a thicket of ethical issues, many of interest to philanthropists.… MORE >>

  • The “chic” death and the World War I generation

    This month, there have been many remembrances of the outbreak of World War I in August 1914.… MORE >>

  • Children at the border and the limits of policy

    The harrowing tales of children traveling alone to the United States have made headlines for weeks—and focused attention in both the House and Senate as legislators try to put together a bill to address the crisis before the August recess.… MORE >>

  • Nannies, nine year olds, and the Nanny State

    I had no idea of the risk I was taking!… MORE >>

  • In lieu of flowers…

    One of the public aspects of a death is the opportunity for the surviving spouse or family to request memorial gifts to a charity: “In lieu of flowers, friends may make a donation to…” This is very familiar practice—and yet it’s a very striking one, far outside most of our social norms around gifts and philanthropy.… MORE >>

  • Two hundred years of Austen’s Mansfield Park

    This year marks the 200th anniversary of the publication of Jane Austen’s Mansfield Park… MORE >>.

  • Laptops and learning

    This past fortnight, there’s been a lively blogosphere debate about whether college students should be allowed to use their laptops in the classroom.… MORE >>

  • The lure of the Little Library

    Imagine my delight when—about two months ago—the “Little Free Library” in the photo above popped up a few blocks down our street, just a block past our son’s bus stop and a block before our favorite playground.… MORE >>

  • Trigger happy on college campus

    No, this isn’t about a threat to life and limb from guns on campus—thank heavens!—but about a threat to the life of the mind: calls for “trigger warnings” on college syllabi and assignments to caution students that assigned material may be disturbing.… MORE >>

  • The Great Society turns 50

    Next Thursday, May 22, marks the fiftieth anniversary of Lyndon Johnson’s “Great Society” speech, delivered as a commencement address at the University of Michigan.… MORE >>

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