Sociologist John Schmalzbauer teaches in the Department of Religious Studies at Missouri State University where he holds the Blanche Gorman Strong Chair in Protestant Studies. A Minnesota native, he has lived in the Ozarks since 2004. His research and teaching focus on American evangelicalism, religion and higher education, and religious forms of popular culture. His book People of Faith: Religious Conviction in American Journalism and Higher Education (Cornell University Press) explores the role of religion in the careers of 40 prominent journalists and scholars. He holds a doctorate in sociology from Princeton University and a bachelor's degree in political science from Wheaton College (Illinois), the alma mater of Billy Graham and Wes Craven (the creator of The Nightmare on Elm Street films).