Baseball As A Road To God

February 14 11:30 am – 12:30 pm

Mayser Gymnasium

  • John Sexton

John Sexton
President Emeritus of New York University, Dean Emeritus of NYU School of Law, and Benjamin F. Butler Professor of Law

Can baseball be a road to God? John Sexton’s talk will explore how something seemingly secular, like baseball, might allow us to touch those ineffable dimensions of life. Recognizing that baseball is not “the” way to God, and for most of us not even “a” way to God, Sexton will use baseball as a way to demonstrate what it might mean to live a little slower, notice a little more, and embrace life’s ineffable beauties.

John Sexton is the President Emeritus of New York University, serving from 2002 to 2016. Prior to his time as President, he served as the Dean of NYU’s Law School. He is also the Benjamin J. Butler Professor of Law. He is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, and a past member of the Executive Committee of the Association of American Universities. He is past Chair of the American Council on Education, the New York Academy of Sciences, and the Commission on Independent Colleges and Universities of New York. He has served as the Chairman of the Board of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York (2003-2006) and Chair of the Federal Reserve Systems Council of Chairs (2006). While Dean of the Law School, he was President of the Association of American Law Schools.

Sexton received a B.A. in History (1963) from Fordham College; an M.A. in Comparative Religion (1965) and a Ph.D. in History of American Religion (1978) Fordham University; and a J.D. magna cum laude (1979) from Harvard Law School.

He is an author of the nation’s leading casebook on Civil Procedure. He also is the author of Redefining the Supreme Court's Role: A Theory of Managing the Federal Court System (a treatment of the Supreme Court's case selection process) in addition to several other books, numerous chapters, articles and Supreme Court briefs.

Before coming to NYU, President Sexton served as Law Clerk to Chief Justice Warren Burger of the United States Supreme Court (1980-1981), and to Judges David Bazelon and Harold Leventhal of the United States Court of Appeals (1979-1980). For ten years (1983-1993), he served as Special Master Supervising Pretrial Proceedings in the Love Canal Litigation. From 1966 - 1975, he was a Professor of Religion at Saint Francis College in Brooklyn, where he was Department Chair from 1970-1975.

Sexton is also passionate about baseball, growing up in the 1950s as a Brooklyn Dodgers fan, but having since converted to a Yankees fan after the Dodgers left for LA. During his time at NYU, Dr. Sexton has taught a seminar called “Baseball as a Road to God”, and wrote a New York Times best seller based on the course.  He has a new book coming out in April of 2019 entitled “Standing for Reason: The University in a Dogmatic Age.”

This event was proposed by Joe Pritchett.