Marriage Movement Gets Big Boost From Release of Statement

Something extraordinary is about to happen to the marriage debate in America. Beyond left and right, a broad-based, bipartisan marriage movement is about to be born.

Today, at the Smart Marriages conference in Denver, leaders of the marriage movement came together to release a new joint statement: The Marriage Movement: A Statement of Principles. Over 100 prominent scholars and religious and civic leaders have joined together to pledge that in this decade we will turn the tide on marriage and reduce divorce and unmarried childbearing, so that each year more children will grow up protected by their own two happily married parents and more adults’ marriage dreams will come true.

The signers detail a wide array of existing efforts as evidence that a growing, grass-roots marriage movement exists. They also make concrete recommendations, pointing to new ways that parents, families, faith communities, civic leaders, the legal profession, youth workers, marriage counselors, therapists and educators, and medical professionals, as well as federal, state, and local governments can help strengthen marriage.

After June 29, the tired, old Murphy Brown debate is over.  Marriage is not a divisive goal, but a shared aspiration.  It is time, these leaders say, to focus the nation’s attention on a burning new question: how “to rebuild the shattered dream of lasting love and to pass on a healthier, happier, and more successful marriage culture to the next generation.

We invite you to join the list of signatories of The Marriage Movement. At you can read the statement and see the list of original signatories, but most importantly, you can ADD YOUR NAME to the list of men and women across the country who want to strengthen and affirm the importance of marriage in America. Thanks for your consideration.

Original Signatories     

Enola Aird
Director of the Motherhood Project, Institute for American Values (New York, NY)

Representative Mark Anderson
Chairman, Human Services Committee, Arizona House of Representatives (Phoenix, AZ)

Charles Ballard
Founder and CEO, Institute for Responsible Fatherhood (Washington, D.C.)

Brent A. Barlow, Ph.D.
Chair, Governors Commission on Marriage, Utah (Orem, UT)

Jonetta Rose Barras
Author of Whatever Happened to Daddys Little Girl? The Impact of Fatherlessness on Black Women (Washington, D.C.)

Julie Baumgardner
M.S., Associate Director, First Things First, Inc. (Chattanooga, TN)

Dr. Steven Bayme
Director of the William Petschek National Jewish Family Center, American Jewish Committee (New York, NY)

Robert Bellah
Emeritus Professor of Sociology, University of California at Berkeley and Co-Author of Habits of the Heart

Lorraine Blackman
African American Family Life Education Program, Indiana University, School of Social Work (Indianapolis, IN)

David Blankenhorn
President, Institute for American Values (New York, NY)

Rep. Elaine Bloom
State Representative and Candidate for the United States Congress (Miami Beach, Florida)

Senator Mark Boitano
New Mexico State Senate (Albuquerque, NM)

Rae Young Bond
President and Executive Director, First Things First, Inc. (Chattanooga, TN)

David Bosworth
Author, University of Washington (Seattle, WA)

Sharon Weston Broome
Louisiana State Representative, District 29 (Baton Rouge, LA)

Hon. Helen E. Brown
Judge of the 3rd Judicial Circuit Court (Detroit, MI)

Don S. Browning
Alexander Campbell Professor and Director of the Religion, Culture, and Family Project, Divinity School, University of Chicago

David L. Caprara
President, The Empowerment Network (Washington, D.C.)

Allan C. Carlson, Ph.D.
President, The Howard Center (Rockford, IL)

Obie Clayton, Jr.
Executive Director, Morehouse Research Institute and Professor of Sociology, Morehouse College (Atlanta, GA)

Bill Coffin
Navy Quality of Life Program Specialist and Marriage Preparation Coordinator, Archdiocese of Washington, D.C.

David Orgon Coolidge
Director, Marriage Law Project, Columbus School of Law, The Catholic University of America; Ethics and Public Policy Center (Washington, D.C.)

Florence Creighton, MSW, LCSW
Partner, Family Wellness Associates (Gilroy, CA)

John Crouch
Americans for Divorce Reform (Arlington, VA)

Midge Dector
Author (New York, NY)

Rita DeMaria, Ph.D.
Founder, Family Relations Success Council, and Director and Founder, The Relationship Center (Spring House, PA)

William J. Doherty, Ph.D.
Professor, Department of Family Social Science, University of Minnesota (St. Paul, MN)

George Doub
M.Div., MFT, Co-Founder and Partner, Family Wellness Associates (Scotts Valley, CA)

Al Dueck
Professor of Psychology, Fuller Theological Seminary (Pasadena, CA)

Don E. Eberly
Director, The Civil Society Project (Lancaster, PA)

Jean Bethke Elshtain
Laura Spelman Rockefeller Professor of Social and Political Ethics, Divinity School, University of Chicago

Martha Farrell Erickson, Ph.D.
Director, Children, Youth, and Family Consortium, University of Minnesota (St. Paul, MN)

Amitai Etzioni
Author of the Spirit of Community and University Professor, George Washington University (Washington, D.C.)

Patrick F. Fagan
The William H. G. FitzGerald Fellow in Family and Culture Studies, The Heritage Foundation (Washington, D.C.)

Dr. Robert M. Franklin
President, Interdenominational Theological Center (Atlanta, GA)

Francis Fukuyama
Omer L. and Nancy Hirst Professor of Public Policy, George Mason University (Arlington, VA)

Maggie Gallagher
Director, The Marriage Program, Institute for American Values (New York, NY)

William A. Galston
Professor, School of Public Affairs, University of Maryland (College Park, MD)

Michael Geer
President, Pennsylvania Family Institute (Harrisburg, PA)

Rabbi Marc A. Gellman, Ph.D.
President of the New York Board of Rabbis

Mary Ann Glendon
Learned Hand Professor of Law, Harvard University

Norval Glenn
Ashbel Smith Professor of Sociology and Stiles Professor of American Studies, University of Texas at Austin

Lori H. Gordon, Ph.D.
Founder/Director, PAIRS Foundation, Ltd., PAIRS (Practical Application of Intimate Relationship Skills) (Weston, FL)

Rabbi Morris Gordon, Ph.D.
Chairman of the Board, PAIRS Foundation, Ltd. (Weston, FL)

Bernard Guerney, Jr.
Director, National Institute of Relationship Enhancement (Bethesda, MD)

David Gutmann, Ph.D.
Emeritus Professor of Psychology, Department of Psychiatry, Northwestern University Medical School (Chicago, IL)

Hon. Bill Hardiman
Mayor of Kentwood, Michigan

Terry Hargrave, Ph.D.
Professor, West Texas A&M University (Canyon, TX); Author of The Essential Humility of Marriage; and Past President, Texas Association for Marriage and Family Therapy

Archibald D. Hart, Ph.D., FPPR
Professor of Psychology, Graduate School of Psychology, Fuller Theological Seminary (Pasadena, CA)

Alan Hawkins
Associate Director, School of Family Life, Brigham Young University (Provo, UT)

Dr. Steve A. Hayner
President, InterVarsity Christian Fellowship (Madison, WI)

Dr. Joanne Heaney-Hunter
Associate Professor of Theology, St. Johns University, (New York, NY)

Harville Hendrix
Author of Getting the Love You Want and Co-Founder, Institute for Imago Relationship Therapy (Tenafly, NJ)

The Rev. Dr. Roberta Hestenes
Senior Pastor, Solana Beach Presbyterian Church (Solana, CA) and former president of Eastern College (St. Davids, PA)

Sylvia Ann Hewlett
Fellow at Harvards Center for the Study of Values in Public Life, Founder and Chairman of the National Parenting Association (New York, NY)

Wade F. Horn, Ph.D.
President, The National Fatherhood Initiative (Gaithersburg, MD)



Kay Hymowitz
Senior Fellow, The Manhattan Institute, and Affiliate Scholar, Institute for American Values (New York, NY)

Dan Jarvis
Director of Research and Policy, Michigan Family Forum (Lansing, MI)

Pamela L. Jordan, Ph.D., R.N.
Department of Family and Child Nursing, University of Washington and Developer, Becoming Parents Program (Seattle, WA)

Charlene R. Kamper, MA, CFLE

Educator, Redlands High School (Redlands, CA) and Author of Connections: Relationships and Marriage; Connections: Dating and Emotions; and Being Yourself

Amy A. Kass
University of Chicago

Leon R. Kass
University of Chicago

Jeff Kemp
Executive Director, Washington Family Council (Bellevue, WA)

Anna Mae Kobbe, Ph.D.
National leader in family life education (Washington, D.C.)

Thomas C. Kohler
Professor of Law, Boston College Law School

Michael G. Lawler
Amelia B. and Emil G. Graff Chair in Theological Studies, and Director, Center for Marriage and Family, Creighton University (Omaha, NE)

Delegate John R. Leopold
Deputy Minority Whip, House of Delegates (Annapolis, MD)

Rabbi Michael Lerner
Editor, TIKKUN Magazine (San Francisco, CA) and Author of Spirit Matters

Dana Mack
Director, Childhood & Adolescence Project, Institute for American Values (New York, NY)

Barbara Markey, Ph.D.
FOCCUS, Inc., and Creighton University Center for Marriage and Family (Omaha, NE)

Howard J. Markman, Ph.D.
Co-Author of Fighting for Your Marriage: Positive Steps for Preventing Divorce and Preserving a Lasting Love; Co-Developer, Prevention and Relationship Enhancement Program (PREP); and Psychologist, University of Denver

H. Richard McCord, Ed.D.
Executive Director, US Catholic Bishops Committee on Marriage and Family Life (Washington, D.C.)

Michael J. McManus
President, Marriage Savers (Potomac, MD)

Lawrence M. Mead
Professor of Politics, New York University

Sherod Miller, Ph.D.
Co-Developer of COUPLE COMMUNICATION (Evergreen, CO)

Barbara Morrison-Rodriguez, Ph.D.
Associate Dean and Research Professor, The Florida Mental Health Institute, University of South Florida (Tampa, FL)

Richard J. Mouw, Ph.D.
President, Fuller Theological Seminary (Pasadena, CA)

John E. Murray, Jr.
President, Duquesne University, and Executive Director, Duquesne University Family Institute (Pittsburgh, PA)

David G. Myers
Professor of Psychology, Hope College (Holland, MI) and Author, The American Paradox: Spiritual Hunger in an Age of Plenty

Mary Myrick
Oklahoma Marriage Initiative (Oklahoma City, OK)

Father Richard John Neuhaus
President, Institute on Religion and Public Life (New York, NY)

Steven L. Nock, Ph.D.
Professor of Sociology, University of Virginia (Charlottesville, VA) and Author of Marriage and Mens Lives

David H. Olson, Ph.D.
Professor Emeritus, University of Minnesota

Theodora Ooms
Couples and Marriage Policy Resource Center (Washington, DC)

Les Parrott, III, Ph.D. and Leslie Parrott, Ed.D.
Center for Relationship Development, Seattle Pacific University (Seattle, WA) and Scholars-In-Residence for the Oklahoma Marriage Initiative (Oklahoma City, OK)

Mitchell B. Pearlstein, Ph.D.
President, Center of the American Experiment (Minneapolis, MN)

Dwight N. Peterson
Associate Professor of Biblical Studies, Eastern College (St. Davids, PA)

Margaret Kim Peterson
Assistant Professor of Theological Studies, Eastern College (St. Davids, PA)

Mary Pipher
Author of The Shelter of Each Other and Another Country: Navigating the Emotional Terrain of Our Elders (Lincoln, NE)

David Popenoe
Professor of Sociology and Co-Director, The Marriage Project, Rutgers University (New Brunswick/Piscataway, NJ)

Stephen G. Post, Ph.D.
Center for Biomedical Ethics, School of Medicine, Case Western University (Cleveland, OH)

Arthur E. Rasmussen
Board Member, Institute for American Values (New York, NY)

Catherine (Kay) Reed
President, The Dibble Fund for Marriage Education (Berkeley, CA)

Jerry Regier
Cabinet Secretary for Health and Human Services, State of Oklahoma

Gloria G. Rodriguez, Ph.D.
President/CEO, AVANCE, Inc. (San Antonio, TX)

Senator Tom Rossin
Florida Senate President-Designate

Hon. James E. Sheridan
District Judge (Adrian, MI)

Ronald J. Sider
President, Evangelicals for Social Action

Charles Kent Smith, M.D.
Vice Dean for Education and Academic Affairs; Dorothy Jones Weatherhead Professor; and Chairman, Department of Family Medicine, Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine (Cleveland, OH)

Diane Sollee
Founder and Director, Coalition for Marriage, Family, and Couples Education (Washington, DC)

Katherine S. Spaht
Jules F. and Frances L. Landry Professor of Law, Louisiana State University

Scott M. Stanley
Co-Director, Center for Marital and Family Studies and Adjunct Professor of Psychology, University of Denver

Glenn T. Stanton
Executive Family Editor,

Peter Uhlenberg
Professor of Sociology, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

Mary Stewart Van Leeuwen, Ph.D.
Resident Scholar, Hestenes Center for Christian Women in Leadership, Eastern College (St. Davids, PA)

Maris A. Vinovskis, Ph.D.
Professor of History, University of Michigan (Ann Arbor, MI)

Linda J. Waite
Professor of Sociology, University of Chicago

Judith Wallerstein, Ph.D.
Founder of the Judith Wallerstein Center for the Family in Transition (Corte Madera, CA) and Divorce Researcher and Author

Professor Lynn D. Wardle
J. Reuben Clark Law School, Brigham Young University (Provo, UT)

Michele Weiner-Davis
Author of Divorce Busting

Barbara Dafoe Whitehead
Author and Co-Director, The Marriage Project, Rutgers University (New Brunswick/Piscataway, NJ)

James Q. Wilson
Emeritus Professor of Management, UCLA; and Reagan Professor of Public Policy, Pepperdine University (Malibu, CA)

John Witte, Jr.
Jonas Robitscher Professor of Law and Ethics and Director, Law and Religion Program, Emory University (Atlanta, GA)

2001 Meridian Magazine.  All Rights Reserved.