Press Releases

Libertas Institute Welcomes New Executive VP and More

Libertas Institute has been growing! So much so, we’ve created a new position within the organization — Executive Vice President — and we’re pleased to announce that we’ve hired Fergus Hodgson to fill that role.

Fergus Hodgson is a New Zealand native who grew up on a sheep and cattle farm near Ngaruawahia on the North Island. He is the third of six children in a Catholic family, and he is a Canadian and Irish citizen through his mother and grandparents. He rode a horse to elementary school, and until retirement his father milked a cow by hand for the family. Hodgson’s younger brother and sister-in-law now run the farm: Te Akatea Station.

As an escape from boarding school, he embraced sports, especially cycling, running, rowing, and rugby — and he has the scars to prove it! After representing New Zealand in the single scull at the under-21 level, he came to the United States in 2003 on a rowing scholarship with Boston University. He has completed marathons in Canada, Ecuador, and the United States, and you will see him running around Lehi.

His four years based in Boston opened his eyes to classical liberalism and gave him an affection for the United States. In particular, he learned the importance of free speech, and he found a treasure of information in the Foundation for Economic Education and the Mises Institute. In his final semester, he completed a directed study on the economic origins of marital decline, and he achieved his first academic publication with the Boston University Brownstone Journal.

After completing his BA in economics, he returned to New Zealand and completed a second major in political science at the University of Waikato. While there, he became a student columnist for Nexus Magazine and found unexpected success. The top provincial paper, the Waikato Times, published him, and these early columns opened the door to work with think tanks in Canada and the United States. His first article stateside made the Washington Times, and his second achieved national syndication.

He cut his teeth as a reporter and editor in Louisiana with the Pelican Institute, before becoming the director of fiscal policy studies for the John Locke Foundation in North Carolina. Alongside these roles, he wrote for countless outlets — including the American Conservative, the Daily CallerEcon Journal Watch, Fox News, the Fraser Institute, the Future of Freedom Foundation, and — and he started his own podcast on liberty around the world. This later evolved into the Gold Newsletter Podcast.

Prior to Libertas, he was the founding editor in chief of the PanAm Post and the founder of Econ Americas, a financial consultancy devoted to Latin America. During this time, he completed a certificate in Cuban history at the University of Miami and passed the Diploma of Spanish as a Foreign Language at the B2 level. Highlights include appearing as a repeat guest with John Stossel on Fox Business, viral articles undermining the Chavista regime in Venezuela, and testifying in Spanish before the National Congress of Paraguay. He has traveled to 19 of 20 nations in Latin America, with stays of more than a year each in Argentina and Guatemala.

In 2019, Hodgson began his MBA in finance from Rice University in Texas. His writing has continued as a research associate for the Frontier Centre in Canada and as a columnist for the Epoch Times. Upon graduation, he considers himself extremely fortunate to be joining the Libertas Institute and making a home in Utah.

In addition to Hodgson, Libertas has been fortunate enough to bring on a number of other highly skilled team members to further our mission of changing hearts, minds, and laws.

We also just hired Emma Phillips to be managing editor for the Tuttle Twins. She most recently was the spokesperson for Young Americans for Liberty.

We added James Dunavant to our team to help with fundraising. He most recently was doing fundraising for the Mises Institute. We also recently added Brandon Patterson to our fundraising team, who was helping James O’Keefe and Project Veritas with their fundraising and operations.

Finally, Jen Maffessanti joins us from the Foundation for Economic Education as our Director of Communications.

Attracting talented people like this with significant experience helping national organizations shows the confidence there is in our work — both in scaling our policy innovations beyond Utah’s borders to change laws across the country and in our work to educate the rising generation and combat all the socialist propaganda they’re subjected to.

There’s so much work to be done and a ton of opportunity! We’re glad these new colleagues are part of the team and excited to continue working with an all-star cast of characters who share our passion for changing the world.