Dr. Barbara A. Perry
McConnell Center Fellow (Non-Resident)
- Dr. Barbara A. Perry is one of two non-resident fellows at the McConnell Center. In 2006-2007, she was the senior fellow for the McConnell Center's Civic Education program.
- Dr. Barbara A. Perry is a
U.S. Supreme Court expert and biographer of the Kennedys, as well as the Carter
Glass Professor of Government and founding director of the Center for
Civic Renewal at Sweet Briar College in Virginia. In 1994-95 she was the
Judicial Fellow at the U.S. Supreme Court, where she received the Tom
C. Clark Award as the outstanding fellow that year. Her duties included
researching and drafting speeches for Chief Justice William H.
- Professor Perry’s eight books include The Supremes: An
Introduction to the United States Supreme Court Justices, 2nd ed.
(Peter Lang 2009); The Michigan Affirmative Action Cases
(University Press of Kansas 2007); Jacqueline Kennedy: First Lady of
the New Frontier (University Press of Kansas 2004); The Priestly
Tribe: The Supreme Court’s Image in the American Mind (Praeger 1999;
winner of a 2001 Choice Award); A “Representative” Supreme Court?
The Impact of Race, Religion, and Gender on Appointments (Greenwood
1991); and, with Henry Abraham, Freedom and the Court: Civil Rights
and Liberties in the United States, 8th edition (University Press of
- Perry is currently researching two new books: Catholics and the
Supreme Court (Georgetown University Press) and Rose: Mother of the
Kennedy Image (Norton). The author of more than 30 articles, Dr. Perry
has lectured throughout the United States and is a frequent media
commentator on public affairs for, among others, CNN, Public Radio, and
the Washington Post. She is a regular guest on Wisconsin Public Radio’s
program, “At Issue.” From 1995 to 2008, she served as a consultant for
and taught in the annual Supreme Court Summer Institute, co-sponsored by
the Supreme Court Historical Society and Street Law. As an expert on
the Court and the Kennedy family, Perry conducts historical research for
auction houses and advises them on historical documents. A native of
Louisville, Kentucky, she is an avid fan of the University of Louisville
Cardinals basketball teams and the Kentucky Derby.
- Ph.D. — Government, University of Virginia
M.A. — Politics, Philosophy, and Economics, Hertford College, Oxford
B.A. — Political Science (highest honors), University of Louisville