Matthew S. Stanford

Chief Executive Officer

Matthew S. Stanford, PhD is CEO of the Hope and Healing Center & Institute (HHCI) in Houston, Texas and adjunct professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Baylor College of Medicine and the Department of Psychology at the University of Houston. Formerly Professor of Psychology, Neuroscience, and Biomedical Studies at Baylor University (2003–2015) and Associate Professor of Psychology at the University of New Orleans (1994–2003), he has served the academic community in a variety of leadership positions including institutional review board chair, graduate program director, and department chair.

A Fellow of the Association for Psychological Science, he is the author of over 100 peer-reviewed journal articles and book chapters in psychology, psychiatry, and neuroscience. His research on the interplay between psychology and issues of faith has been featured in such national publications as The New York Times, USA Today, and Christianity Today, as well as many news websites including Fox, MSNBC, Yahoo!, and US News & World Report. Dr. Stanford is the author of two books, Grace for the Afflicted: A Clinical and Biblical Perspective on Mental Illness (InterVarsity Press, 2008) and The Biology of Sin: Grace Hope and Healing for Those Who Feel Trapped (InterVarsity Press, 2011).

Dr. Stanford earned his doctoral degree in behavioral neuroscience at Baylor University and completed a post-doctoral fellowship in psychiatry and behavioral sciences at the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston. Professionally he has worked with a variety of mentally ill, including those with aggression, personality disorders, post traumatic stress disorder, stroke, substance dependence, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, and traumatic brain injury.

Prior to coming to the HHCI, Dr. Stanford co-founded and served as the executive director of the Grace Alliance, a faith-based, non-profit mental health organization that provides services and support to individuals living with serious mental illness and their families. Presently he serves on the editorial boards of the Journal of Family and Community Ministries and Behavioral Sciences and the Law, and is a member of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Mental Health Advisory Group, and the American Bible Society’s Trauma Healing Institute Advisory Council.

Matt and his wife, Julie, are the parents of four children and reside in Houston, Texas.


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