Frederick M. Lawrence, Secretary
Frederick M. Lawrence is the 10th Secretary and CEO of the Phi Beta Kappa Society, the nation’s first and most prestigious honor society, founded in 1776. Lawrence is a Distinguished Lecturer at the Georgetown Law Center, and has previously served as president of Brandeis University, Dean of the George Washington University Law School, and Visiting Professor and Senior Research Scholar at Yale Law School. He was elected to the American Philosophical Society in 2018 and the American Law Institute in 1999.
An accomplished scholar, teacher and attorney, Lawrence is one of the nation’s leading experts on civil rights, free expression and bias crimes. Lawrence has published widely and lectured internationally. He is the author of Punishing Hate: Bias Crimes Under American Law (Harvard University Press 1999), examining bias-motivated violence and the laws governing how such violence is punished in the United States. He is an opinion contributor to The Hill and US News, frequently contributes op-eds to various other news sources, such as Newsweek, The Boston Globe, The Philadelphia Inquirer, The Observer, The NY Daily News and The Huffington Post, and has appeared on CNN among other networks.
Amy Mulnix, Associate Secretary
Amy Mulnix, PhD is the Associate Secretary and Chief Operating Officer of the Phi Beta Kappa Society. She joined the national office in August of 2022. As Associate Secretary, Mulnix provides direct oversight to the central dimensions of the Society's operations and supports the work of the Secretary to advance the mission of the Society.
Mulnix spent the bulk of her early life in the Midwest, attending Cornell College for her bachelor’s degree, where she graduated Phi Beta Kappa, and Purdue University for her PhD in entomology with a USDA National Needs Fellowship. Mulnix taught molecular and cellular biology at Earlham College for nearly 25 years.
Immediately before joining the ΦBK national office, Mulnix served eight years as the founding director of the Faculty Center at Franklin and Marshall College where she developed programs to support faculty as teachers, scholars, and institutional citizens. Her previous work includes publications, presentations, grant awards, and board memberships. She was previously a member of the ΦBK Senate and member and chair of the Committee on Qualifications.
The board of directors, called the Senate, is the permanent governing body of the Society. It consists of 24 members elected by the council for six-year terms. Senators may serve for up to two consecutive terms. The Senate meets annually in December and is responsible for implementing the policies adopted by the council and for carrying on the business of the Society. The executive committee of the Senate meets quarterly. There are several other committees of the Senate with specific charges, such as the committee on qualifications, which evaluates institutions applying for chapters.
Peter Quimby, President
Peter Quimby was appointed the 28th Head of School at The Governor’s Academy in Byfield, Massachusetts in 2011. Before assuming this position he had worked in higher education for 13 years, first at the University of Wisconsin-Madison where he served as an assistant dean in the College of Arts and Sciences (1998–2000), and then at Yale University where he was a lecturer in the Political Science Department and Dean of Davenport College (2001-2005). At Princeton University Quimby served as Associate Dean of the College (2005–2008) and later Deputy Dean of the College (2008–2011) where he had general responsibility for the undergraduate curriculum.
Quimby has been actively engaged in the work of the Phi Beta Kappa Society for the better part of two decades. He served as Secretary of Alpha of Wisconsin (UW-Madison) (1998–2000), was an active member of Alpha of Connecticut (Yale University) (2001–2005), and was Secretary of Beta of New Jersey (Princeton University) (2006–2011). At the national level, he served on the Committee on Qualifications (2009–2012) and the Phi Beta Kappa Senate (2012–2018), where he also served as Chair of the ΦBK Awards Committee (2012–2018), on the Senate Executive Committee (2015–2018) and as Vice President of the Society (2018–2021). Quimby earned his B.A. at Bowdoin College and received his Ph.D. in Political Science at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Esther Jones, Vice President
Esther Jones is the Associate Provost and Dean of the Faculty at Clark University in Worcester, MA which shelters the Lambda of Massachusetts chapter of the Phi Beta Kappa Society. She has served as Vice President for two years, and President for seven years at the Lambda of MA chapter. Concurrent with her service as President of Lambda of MA, Jones has served on the national senate as an at-large member for six years, serving on the Committee on Chapters for three years, and currently serving on the Executive Committee. In these increasing levels of leadership within the society, Jones has succeeded in heightening student awareness of Phi Beta Kappa and the value of a liberal arts and sciences education, strengthening alumni ties and connections with the university chapter, and increasing opportunities to serve as a convener of society-related events that promote the love of learning as foundational to cultivating a meaningful life of consequence.
At the time of her election to the society at her alma mater, the Fisk University Delta of TN chapter, Jones was unaware of the prestige of the honor. A joint English and music/vocal performance major, she completed all course requirements in such fashion that by her senior year, there was room in her schedule to take some courses for fun: photography, drawing, and black psychology. While she enjoyed fulfilling the courses and requirements for both of her majors, the semester of freedom to feed her curiosity about interesting subjects for their inherent interest was the most memorable and rewarding experience of her undergraduate career. It is this spirit that is fostered, recognized, and promoted by the society—love of learning [as] the guide of life—that led Jones to a career in academia and in her commitment to the transcendent values of the society today.