On 1 November 2005, the Roche Chair for Interreligious Research at the Nanzan Institute for Religion and Culture (南山諸宗教研究講座) was officially established by the President and Senate of Nanzan University, Nagoya, Japan.
The Chair has been made possible by the generous endowment of one million dollars US donated by Robert Roche, President of Oak Lawn Marketing, in 2005.
The Chair establishes the position of a Visiting Research Fellow at the Nanzan Institute for Religion and Culture with a nominal affiliation to the Graduate School of the Department of Christian Thought in the Faculty of Humanities at Nanzan University.
The Chair is aimed at honoring scholars who have made a distinguished contribution to mutual understanding among religions and traditions of religious thought East and West.
An Inaugural Reception was held on 22 June 2003 at the Nanzan Institute.
Occupants of the Chair
Thomas P. Kasulis
John P. Keenan
John C. Maraldo
Victor S. Hori
James W. Heisig
Joseph S. O'Leary