Pepperdine professor of law and Caruso Family Chair in Constitutional Law Douglas W. Kmiec has published Lift Up Your Hearts, a faith based book focusing primarily on reflections from his past and current roles in politics, and the climate of today's political campaigns.
A former United States Ambassador, and one time legal counsel to President Reagan, Kmiec is known, in part, for playing a key role in securing votes among the Catholic population in favor of President Obama during the 2008 presidential campaign. Lift Up Your Hearts comes with notable praise from an eclectic set of sources, with Senator Lugar (R IN), the well known conservative and ranking minority member of U.S. Senate Foreign relations, commenting that the book reveals Kmiec's ambassadorial work to have been accomplished with "thoughtful excellence." Equal praise from the opposite side of the political ledger came from Vicki Kennedy, widow of the late Senator Ted Kennedy, and progressive minister and leader of Sojourners, Rev. Jim Wallis, who called the book "poignant and compelling."
Lift Up Your Hearts includes a reflection on the unshakeable, but not unthinking, faith needed to overcome the profound tragedies that have come into Kmiec's life in an elegantly written foreword by Martin Sheen. The book's focus is noted in the book's summary: "Today, when the culture war is defining the Republican ticket and the president is accused of starting a 'war on religion,' at home while abroad is confronted by an understandably anxious Israel fearful that the president's reliance on diplomacy and sanctions will not corral Iran, a book written with grace, objectivity, and charity toward one's opponents is a surprisingly welcome tonic from all the noise and deserves notice. In a genre that is at once biography, political commentary, and religious reflection, the book ties these seemingly disparate features of our lives together with success."
Kmiec joined the faculty at the School of Law after serving several years as dean and St. Thomas More Professor of Law at The Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C., and for nearly two decades, on the law faculty at the University of Notre Dame. In addition to serving under President Reagan, Kmiec worked for former president George H. W. Bush as constitutional legal counsel (Assistant and Deputy Assistant Attorney General, Office of Legal Counsel, U.S. Department of Justice) from 1985-89. He was nominated for foreignservice by President Barack Obama and was unanimously confirmed by the Senate, serving as ambassador to the Republic of Malta. Kmiec is the author of a multitude of articles, including a once syndicated column in the Catholic News Service.
A White House Fellow (1982-83), Kmiec is one of a few individuals who have received the Distinguished Service Award from two cabinet departments - the Department of Justice in 1987 and Housing and Urban Development in 1983. In 1988, he was awarded the Edmund J. Randolph Award by the attorney general. He has lectured on the U.S. Constitution in Asia as a Fulbright Distinguished Scholar.