About the Institute
The Thomas S. Foley Institute for Public Policy and Public Service was established at Washington State University to honor Tom Foley's more than 30 years of public service to both state and nation and as the 49th Speaker of the House of Representatives.
The mission of the institute is to foster civic education, public service, and public policy research in a nonpartisan, cross-disciplinary setting. To fulfill this mission, the institute supports programs in the 4 substantive policy areas most relevant to Tom Foley's long-term interests: agriculture policy, environment and natural resources, media and ethics, and government studies and public service.
The nation is currently in the midst of a crisis in public confidence in the ability of our government and democratic institutions to work effectively. Our educational institutions must facilitate a better understanding of the social, political, historical, and economic dimensions of the challenges ahead. The Foley Institute intends to make an important contribution in developing civic literacy, community involvement in public decisions, and a commitment to public service in the broadest sense possible.
To date, no institution in the West has taken a leading role in this area. The Foley Institute is a natural extension of the land-grant mission of Washington State University and is a fitting way to honor the service of Thomas and Heather Foley.