Walter J. Thompson was born and raised in Nassau County, NY. He was educated at Catholic grammar and high schools and spent much of his free time on the baseball diamond and the basketball court. He initially studied medicine and then, following an encounter with Fr. James V. Schall, S.J., politics and philosophy at Georgetown University. He continued his studies in political philosophy at the University of Notre Dame.
In 1996, he was invited to assist in founding a Papal institute for the study of philosophy and theology in Gaming, Austria. The International Theological Institute was established at the request of St. John Paul II to be a center for the pursuit of theological wisdom, a place of encounter between the two lungs of the Church, East and West, and a source for the renewal of Catholic culture in Eastern Europe after the devastations of the Communist era. The pedagogy at ITI was modeled on that of the great Catholic liberal arts colleges. Study was centered on the reading and discussion of the primary sources of theology — Sacred Scripture, Magisterial teaching, and the writings of the Fathers and Doctors of the Church.
Professor Thompson was founding Vice President of ITI, its first Academic Dean, and Associate Professor of Ethics and Political Philosophy. In 2008, after twelve years in Europe, he and his family decided to return to the United States. An old friendship and the exciting prospect of participating in the renewal of Catholic higher education in New England brought him to Thomas More College.
At the College, he teaches the liberal arts, humanities, philosophy, and theology. His research and writing are centered on ethics and politics in the Aristotelian-Thomistic tradition. He is a past winner of the Matchette Prize for Young Scholars of the American Catholic Philosophical Association.
When not engaged in study and teaching he can often be found listening to music. The sacred music of Monteverdi and Bach, chamber music of Mozart and Haydn, and symphonies of Brahms and Bruckner are particular favorites.
He and his wife Ruth have seven children and seven grandchildren. They live in Amherst, NH.