Ryan O’Dowd

Ryan O’Dowd is Senior Visiting Lecturer of Aerospace Studies at Cornell University, where he also leads students in the Air Force Reserve Officer training program. The flip side of his life is theology, having previously taught biblical studies and social justice at Briercrest College and Redeemer University College in Canada.

Seemingly unable to settle down, Ryan’s adult life has been spread across a wide range of experiences, interests and places. His education began at the U.S. Air Force Academy where he earned a BS in biology (with 30 hours of engineering courses). After graduation, he spent seven years as an Air Force officer working in areas of fitness research, logistics, space operations, software testing, and laser systems development. Hoping for a little more focused life, he left to Air Force to pursue biblical studies starting with his MA from Reformed Theological Seminary and a PhD from the University of Liverpool in England.

Ryan’s main academic interests and publishing are in biblical wisdom and law. His books include The Wisdom of Torah: Epistemology in Deuteronomy and the Wisdom Literature (Vandenhoeck and Ruprecht, 2009) and, with Craig Bartholomew, Old Testament Wisdom Literature: A Theological Introduction (InterVarsity Press) expected out in the spring of 2011. Biblical wisdom, of course, relates to the whole of human life, so it is a natural place for an eclectic life to find a home.

He and his wonderful wife Amy live in Ithaca, New York and have four children: Patrick, Annie, Aidan and Emma Clare.