I am a PhD candidate in Moral Theology at the University of Notre Dame. I received an M.T.S. in moral theology from the University of Notre Dame in 2013 and an MLitt in Philosophy from the University of St. Andrews in 2012. I completed my undergraduate degrees in Political Philosophy, Policy, and Law (PPL) and Religious Studies at the University of Virginia in 2007.
My present work is in the area of fundamental moral theology with a particular specialization in the moral thought of Thomas Aquinas. My dissertation, “Following and Not-Following the Divine Law,” explores the definition of sin as a violation of the divine law. By putting Aquinas’s understanding of the divine law into conversation with contemporary scholars in law and philosophy, I develop a theological defense of the obligatory character of legal and customary rules protecting individuals from unjust harm.
From 2015-2016, I served as a Visiting Research Fellow in International Law and Ethics at the Afro-Middle East Centre in Johannesburg, South Africa as part of the Notre Dame-USAID Global Development Fellowship program. My research in Johannesburg focused on the parallel justifications of the infliction of collateral damage on noncombatants offered by the United States, Al-Qaeda, and ISIS.
I am interested in the intersection between theology and law, particularly as it is manifested in the development of human rights law and the law of armed conflict.