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About the Founders

The Blackstone Institute for Law and Worldview
President: Virginia Armstrong, Ph.D. (Public Law)*

Dr. Armstrong

Dr. Virginia Armstrong has had a distinguished career in the worlds of both academics and action. She is president and co-founder (with her husband Gerry) of the Blackstone Institute for Law & Worldview, launched in 1983. She also continues to serve as National Director of Eagle Forum's Law and Worldview program.

Additionally, she holds the unique post of Affiliate Professor of Constitutional Apologetics at Houston Christian (Baptist) University. There, she has taught in both the Master of Arts in Apologetics program and the Master of Liberal Arts program. Her current HCU work focuses on audiences outside the university campus. In her Abilene years at HSU she served as Director and Senior Professor of Legal Studies and Political Science.

Dr. Armstrong also founded the Texas Undergraduate Moot Court Association and HSU's Legal Studies Program and served as the first Chairman of each organization. As a college professor, Dr. Armstrong taught a number of advanced law courses, including constitutional history and law, legal philosophy, and the judicial process. She directed HSU’s federal court internship program and coached the University’s award-winning moot court team. And she drafted several of the cases argued in TUMCA tournaments across Texas, most notably those involving “homosexual rights” and the “right to assisted suicide.” Her academic peers have included her in the distinguished circle of “public intellectuals” in contemporary America.  And for many years, her students have dubbed her “an intellectual Rambo.”

Dr. Virginia Armstrong was born on a college campus. Her father was Dean and Registrar at what is now Tarleton State University, so her first home, provided to her parents by the college, was literally in the middle of the college campus. Her mother had also taught at the college level (a position she vacated when little Virginia Lee appeared and more than kept her mother occupied at home, teaching her, and also busily keeping her out of any serious mischief!). Dr. Armstrong graduated valedictorian of her Canyon High School class, received her bachelor’s degree with special honors in the social sciences from West Texas State University (the first time such an honors degree had been granted), and completed her M.A. (political science) and Ph.D. (public law) with perfect academic records from Texas Tech University.

After her first grade, the family moved to Canyon, where her father designed and directed the sociology program for West Texas State. That campus became a backyard playground for Virginia and her childhood friends – a paradise for bicycling, roller skating, tree-climbing and sliding down bannisters. She and her friends now muse that it must have been the grace of God that kept them from upending or otherwise colliding with the multi-age campus crowds that constantly swirled around them as they played. The youngsters also wonder now (as adults) how they could possibly have stayed out of trouble for their antics, innocently pursued as they were!

As Virginia progressed through school, she became involved in an increasing variety of extra-curricular activities. These included piano, concert and marching band, debate and persuasive speaking, basketball, listing in National Who’s Who, director of the senior play, editor of the high school newspaper, and president of the National Honor Society. She was also active in her church’s music program, singing in the choir and playing the piano and organ as needed.

This trend continued in her undergraduate college days, during which she engaged in a variety of activities and organizations, added to her activities pledging Delta Zeta national sorority. She was pledge class president and expected to lead the pledges in playing pranks on members. One of her pledge sisters remembers that Virginia came to be known as “the wild woman of Delta Zeta,” but Virginia has no remembrance of this moniker!

Young Virginia’s father was a Biblically-based Christian sociology professor who openly acknowledged in class the faith foundations of his teaching; and her mother was an openly  Biblically-based history scholar widely respected and sought-after as a speaker and teacher for church groups, women’s study clubs, etc. Her parents understood and routinely discussed at home both the issues of the day and the deeper theological and legal schisms already viciously (thought invisibly) tearing at America’s foundations. Thus, young Virginia’s life from birth on immersed her in an understanding of what is now the nation’s Culture War which is ripping to shreds our culture and constitutional system.  

Also from birth on, the young Virginia was taught that a university was a unique place, one intended by God to be dedicated to discovering and honoring His Truth. Higher education was also divinely-required to function as the custodian of this Truth and the transmitter of Truth to future generations. Thus, to be a college professor was to hold a position of special responsibility to which one is divinely called. And a professor’s life should reflect this calling in every aspect of the individual’s life, whether in the classroom or – as with Dr. Armstrong and her husband, Gerry – when they were far from a campus, as they pursued beloved hobbies. Virginia’s life was imbued with the understanding that a college professor is ALWAYS a college professor, and his/her life should always reflect this special God-given calling

Virginia’s opportunity to live out this philosophy came when HSU’s new president, Dr. Elwin Skiles,  hired her as Instructor of Political Science upon her completion of her M.A. But it was soon both work as well as play for Virginia and her husband, Gerry. Gerry entered graduate school, earning his M.B.A. in management and finance, which resulted in his being hired by HSU as its first truly professional Chief Financial Aid Officer, who established a well-structured and functioning system. Greatly admired and appreciated by so many students in whom he delighted helping through college, there have been countless comments made to him and/or Virginia: “If it hadn’t been for Gerry, I don’t know how I’d have paid my way through HSU.” Gerry’s quiet, but extraordinary, character and personality were already obvious. 

But school wasn’t over for the Armstrongs. One month after Gerry’s graduation, they started seriously on the road to gaining her a Ph.D., a feat accomplished three years later. And then came the fun times of their lives and ministry, much chronicled in her official biography published on the Blackstone Institute for Law & Worldview website. Based on I Peter 3:15-16, the Blackstone Institute for Law & Worldview was/is committed to “defining and defending the Judeo-Christian worldview of the Constitution and law in general.”

Dr. Armstrong now has become a national pioneer in constitutional and legal apologetics.  Much of her current work focuses on the design of short but dynamite-packed studies appealing to, and appropriate for, use by Americans in our fast-paced life today.  Dr. Armstrong is expanding the use of the worldview model to understand the egregious court decisions spewing from America's Humanist judges and how Judeo-Christian worldview proponents should respond more effectively.   She also continues to develop ways of expanding the use of Internet capabilities for researching, creating, and teaching constitutional and legal apologetics. Her audiences range from high school homeschoolers to attorneys and judges. One unique and very successful activity has been Blackstone’s “Constitution Camp,” a high school week of learning moot court, fun, and worship at a Christian family camp near Abilene.

The Eagle Forum has twice granted Dr. Armstrong its National Service Award "with appreciation for your dedicated work for God, home, and country." She received the Liberty Bell Award from the Abilene, Texas, Young Lawyers Association and was a finalist for the Texas Liberty Bell Award, given "to an outstanding nonlawyer for efforts in his/her community to strengthen the American system of justice." She has won numerous scholarly and professional honors. Among these are listings in Outstanding Young Women of America, Outstanding Educators of America, and Who's Who Among America's Teachers (joining only 1% of America's educators to be listed in consecutive editions of this publication, whose honorees are selected by outstanding students for "making a significant impact and difference in students' lives").

Dr. Armstrong has contributed actively to several constitutional/judicial reform efforts. She authored an amicus curiae brief to the U.S. Supreme Court urging the over-turning of Roe v. Wade (McCorvey v. Hill, 2003-2005), and she served as the constitutional issues specialist on the Roe Media Advisory Committee. She has also been actively involved in the effort to pass Congressional court-curbing measures and to secure the appointment of constitutionalist judges.  She served as the National Research and Education Chairman for the Religious Roundtable founded in the 1980s. And as Chairman of the Law Committee of the Coalition on Revival (the successor to the International Council on Biblical Inerrancy), she drafted the group’s signature publication, “The Christian Worldview of Law.”

Dr. Armstrong has written and spoken widely on legal and constitutional topics and Christian apologetics. She has been drafted multiple times to testify before legislative committees, executive agencies, (e.g., the Texas State Board of Education), etc. She helped launch the Republican Women of the Big Country by serving as its Vice President for Education. She has also hosted her own daily radio commentary and has written regular columns for various publications. She has written articles and scholarly papers for a variety of organizations, including the American Family Association, the Christian Legal Society, the Simon Greenleaf School of Law (now the Trinity Law School), the South Texas Law School, the Eagle Forum, Probe Ministries, the Northeastern Political Science Association, the Western Political Science Association, and the Southwest Political Science Association.

Not too long ago, Dr. Armstrong and the Blackstone Institute for Law & Worldview entered a new and expanded phase of their ministry. After four years of planning,  the new “Christianity Confronting the Culture Initiative (CCC),” moved into full operation. Designed and directed by Dr. Armstrong and the Blackstone Institute for Law & Worldview, the CCC is a formal alliance sponsored by Blackstone, Houston Christian University, and the National Eagle Forum. It thus links in a unique fashion, the resources and efforts of  both leading activist groups and leading academic entities, with Blackstone producing most of the educational services and products disseminated by the partner entities. The CCC is a multi-faceted, multi-generational educational service including studies and activities designed with the immediate goal of prevailing in American policy making and elections.  The long-range goal of the CCC is to arm American patriots with the power of knowledge necessary to confront the culture on behalf of the Judeo-Christian worldview in the ongoing Culture War threatening America’s very existence.

In 2022, the CCC introduced to a national audience both in and out of academia a Blackstonian Moot Court program (“BMC”) modeled substantially after the collegiate moot court program, the Texas Undergraduate Moot Court Association – “TUMCA” – which Dr. Armstrong, while at HSU, had led in founding and chairing in its early days in the 1990s. In July of 2022, this new “BMC” program sponsored, and Dr. Armstrong directed, the moot court activity central to the Eagle Forum’s national Student Eagle Convention in Nashville. The event was so well-received that it was broadened and converted into the centerpiece of the entire Student Eagle program at the National Eagle Forum’s fiftieth anniversary gala in St. Louis in September of 2022.

Shortly thereafter, Dr. Armstrong created and taught online the first course sponsored by the CCC and open to any students registering through the CCC sponsors’ PR and recruiting programs. The course, Madison v. Langdell, presented a brief overview, in appellate court format, of America’s bitter Culture War clash between the Judeo-Christian and Humanistic worldviews. The purpose was to demonstrate the superiority of the Judeo-Christian worldview in law in general and constitutional law in particular – and to create in  patriots of all ages the ability to carry forth everywhere this message of Judeo-Christian superiority.

Moving into 2023, Dr. Armstrong taught an extended online course continuing the theme of Judeo-Christian worldview superiority in law and culture. During that time, Hardin-Simmons University inducted Dr. Armstrong into its highly prestigious, “Hall of Leaders.” Members of this body are selected from the period of HSU’s founding (1891) to the present. Criteria include extraordinary service on campus, outstanding service to one’s profession and the culture at large, and a record of exemplary Christian living. Dr. Armstrong was only the 106th person named from HSU’s 132-year history.

Since then, Dr. Armstrong has focused on reorganization and updating of Blackstone’s original resources, while maintaining an uncompromising commitment to the Institute’s original mission, message, and principles. She and her Blackstone digital team have completely redesigned the Institute’s website to reflect this updating process. This includes rolling out a new study, the “Taproot of Truth” project, involving an organized series of articles and podcasts. And Blackstone continues to build partnerships with like-minded individuals and organizations.

Before arriving at HSU, Virginia had already met and started dating the only love of her life, Gerry Armstrong. Soon after her move to Abilene, this most extraordinary young man received a job offer he couldn’t refuse and moved to Abilene. Despite their dating long distance, their relationship really became serious only after Gerry and Virginia landed in the same town. They were married in Canyon’s First Methodist Church in what many “Canyonites” viewed as the fairytale wedding of their time. Off-campus, the Armstrongs pursued a variety of hobbies – horseback riding, hiking, water skiing, snowshoeing, etc. And their greatest delight was in including others in these activities. Indeed, many former students and other younger people came to call them, “Aunt Virginia and Uncle Gerry.” They were active for many years in the Abilene Bible Church, where they served in numerous capacities, including as church pianist and organist. In a very sudden and stunning “life earthquake,” God took Gerry Home to Heaven at Thanksgiving of 2013.

*Co-founder and President, Blackstone Institute for Law & Worldview; Affiliate Professor of Constitutional Apologetics, Houston Christian University; National Director, Eagle Forum’s Law & Worldview Program

The Blackstone Institute for Law & Worldview is a 501 (c) 3 non-profit educational corporation. Donations made to Blackstone are tax-exempt.
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