Curriculum Vitae

  • The Fairfax M. Cone Distinguished Service Professor Emeritus at the University of Chicago, where he taught for 35 years, chiefly in the Divinity School, where the Martin Marty Center for advanced studies was founded upon his retirement, and in the History Department.
  • Columnist for and Senior Editor at the Christian Century from 1956 on.
  • Editor of the semimonthly Context, a newsletter on religion and culture, from 1969 to 2010.
  • Lutheran pastor, ordained in 1952. Before joining the University of Chicago faculty in 1963, he served parishes in the west and northwest suburbs of Chicago for a decade, including starting in Elk Grove Village (IL) the Lutheran Church of the Holy Spirit, then the fastest-growing Lutheran church in the U.S.
  • Author of more than 60 books. Among them are Righteous Empire, for which he won the National Book Award; Pilgrims in Their Own Land: Five Hundred Years of Religion in America; the three-volume Modern American Religion; The One and the Many: America’s Search for the Common Good; The Christian World: A Global History; Martin Luther (in Penguin’s “Lives” series); Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s Letters and Papers from Prison: A Biography; and October 31, 1517: Martin Luther and the Day that Changed the World. He has also collaborated with photographer/son Micah Marty in producing four books of meditations paired with photographs.
  • Author, editor, coauthor, coeditor, or contributor to hundreds of books and more than 5,000 articles, many of which are accessible online.
  • Past president and director of several associations, institutions, and projects. Marty was president of the American Academy of Religion, the American Society of Church History, and the American Catholic Historical Association. He was the founding president and later the George B. Caldwell Scholar-in-Residence at the Park Ridge Center for the Study of Health, Faith, and Ethics. He has served on two U. S. Presidential Commissions and was director of both the Fundamentalism Project of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the Public Religion Project at the University of Chicago (sponsored by the Pew Charitable Trust). He has served St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minnesota, since 1988 as Regent, Board Chair, Interim President in 2000, and now as Senior Regent. (The Martin Marty Chair at St. Olaf is designed to advance the college’s religious program and emphases.)
  • Recipient of numerous honors, including the National Humanities Medal, the National Book Award, the Medal of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the University of Chicago Alumni Medal, the Distinguished Service Medal of the Association of Theological Schools, and 80 honorary doctorates. He is an elected member of the American Antiquarian Society and of the American Philosophical Society and is the Mohandas M. K. Gandhi Fellow of the American Academy of Political and Social Sciences. (Marty is also an admiral in the Great Navy of Nebraska.)
  • Vita: Marty was born in West Point, Nebraska, on February 5, 1928. He was married to the former Elsa Louise Schumacher (b. 1927) from 1952 until her death in 1981. He and his wife Harriet (m. 1982) now enjoy an extended family of seven children, including two who joined the family as foster children; nine grandchildren; and fourteen great-grandchildren.


The “About” page links to some profiles of MEM.

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