The White House announced yesterday the appointment of Jesuit Fr. Thomas Reese to the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom.
The position is a non-paid, volunteer appointment. Reese will continue as a senior analyst and columnist for National Catholic Reporter.
The commission “is an independent, bipartisan U.S. federal government commission that monitors the universal right to freedom of religion or belief abroad and makes policy recommendations to the President, Secretary of State, and Congress,” according to the commission website.
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The commission has nine voting members. Commissioners are appointed by the president and Democratic and Republican leaders in the House and Senate.
On May 9, House Speaker John Boehner, R-OH, appointed Daniel I. Mark, an assistant professor of political science at Villanova University, and re-appointed Robert P. George, the McCormick Professor of Jurisprudence at Princeton University, to the commission. George has served as chair of the commission.
Appointed by President Obama with Reese was Eric P. Schwartz, the dean of the Humphrey School of Public Affairs at the University of Minnesota.