Head of DC-based conservative think tank appointed New College trustee

New College taps author critical of abortion, transgenderism, gay marriage

Generic photo of a school classroom (Pixlr)

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – After Gov. Ron DeSantis this month sparked controversy with appointments of six trustees at New College of Florida, the state university’s Board of Governors on Wednesday chose an author and president of the Washington, D.C.-based Ethics & Public Policy Center to serve as a New College trustee.

The Board of Governors appointed Ryan Anderson, whose books have included, “Tearing Us Apart: How Abortion Harms Everything and Solves Nothing” and “When Harry Became Sally: Responding to the Transgender Moment,” according to information posted on the Ethics & Public Policy Center website.

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Anderson’s appointment came after an uproar about DeSantis’ appointments of conservatives to the board of the small liberal-arts school in Sarasota.

DeSantis has targeted “trendy ideology” in higher education, and the appointments have been widely viewed as an attempt to remake the leadership and direction of New College.

Board of Governors member Alan Levine praised Anderson during a committee meeting Wednesday before the appointment to the New College board was finalized. He said Anderson, who has a doctorate from Notre Dame, has appeared widely on news networks and in major newspapers.

“I’ve had an opportunity to speak with Dr. Anderson,” Levine said. “I find him to be a compelling figure, somebody who is measured and very respectful of our governance process and very eager to serve.”

Anderson is a former senior research fellow at The Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank, and was the founding editor of the online journal Public Discourse, according to information on the Ethics & Public Policy Center website.

The center lists priorities on the website, including “Pushing back against the extreme progressive agenda while building a 2024 consensus for conservatives.” State university boards of trustees are made up of 13 members, with the Board of Governors appointing five members.

Anderson’s appointment is subject to confirmation by the Florida Senate.

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