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Paul G. Schervish

  • Retired Director, Center on Wealth & Philanthropy
    Professor Emeritus, Department of Sociology Boston College

Paul G. Schervish is Professor Emeritus of Sociology and retired Director of the Center on Wealth and Philanthropy at Boston College. He served as Fulbright Professor of Philanthropy at University College, Cork, Ireland. He has been selected five times to the NonProfit Times "Power and Influence Top 50." He received the 2013 Distinguished Career Award from the Altruism, Morality, and Social Solidarity Section of the American Sociological Association.

Schervish is the author of Gospels of Wealth: How the Rich Portray Their Lives and co-author with Keith Whitaker of Wealth and the Will of God. He is currently writing Aristotle's Legacy: The Moral Biography of Wealth and the New Physics of Philanthropy. With John Havens, he co-authored the 1998 report, Millionaires and the Millennium, which predicted the now well known $41 trillion wealth transfer. Findings from their 2012 revised model are reported in The Golden Age of Philanthropy Still Beckons: National Wealth Transfer and Potential for Philanthropy.

Schervish and Havens recently completed a study showing that charitable proclivity by states is not red, as widely reported in the media, but purple with both red and blue states arrayed from top to bottom across the distribution. Schervish helped found and is a faculty member of Legacy Associates' Wealth Coach Network, a training forum for financial and fundraising professionals. He received a Bachelor's Degree in Literature from the University of Detroit, a Masters in Sociology from Northwestern University, a Masters of Divinity Degree from the Jesuit School of Theology at Berkeley, and a Ph.D. in Sociology from the University of Wisconsin, Madison. He continues to give presentations and consult with families on the biographical meaning, mobilizing experiences, and practice of philanthropy.