Texas Tech University Free Market Institute
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Institute Staff and Affiliated Faculty

Dr. Benjamin Powell, Director

Picture of Dr. Benjamin Powell


TTU Plaza
Office 308E
Rawls College of Business
Office W360
(806) 834-3097



Dr. Benjamin Powell is the inaugural Director of the Free Market Institute and Professor in the Area of Energy, Economics and Law in the Rawls College of Business at Texas Tech University.  He is the North American Editor of the Review of Austrian Economics, past President of the Association of Private Enterprise Education, and a Senior Fellow with the Independent Institute.  He earned his B.S. in Economics and Finance from the University of Massachusetts at Lowell, and his M.A. and Ph.D. in Economics from George Mason University.  Prior to joining Texas Tech University, he taught economics at Suffolk University and San Jose State University.

Professor Powell is the author of the Out of Poverty: Sweatshops in the Global Economy (Cambridge University Press: forthcoming), editor of Making Poor Nations Rich: Entrepreneurship and the Process of Development (Stanford University Press: 2008) and co-editor of Housing America: Building Out of a Crisis (Transaction: 2009).  He is the author of more than 50 scholarly articles and policy studies.  His primary fields of research are economic development, Austrian economics, and public choice.

Dr. Powell's research findings have been reported in more than 100 popular press outlets, including The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times.  He also writes frequently for the popular press.  His popular writing has appeared in the Investor's Business Daily, The Financial Times (London), the Christian Science Monitor, and many regional outlets.  He has appeared on numerous radio and television outlets, including CNN, MSNBC, Showtime, CNBC, and he was a regular guest commentator on Fox Business' Freedom Watch.  For more information about Dr. Powell, please visit www.benjaminwpowell.com.


Dr. Eduardo Segarra, Affiliated Faculty

Picture of Dr. Segarra


Dr. Eduardo Segarra is a Professor of Economics in the Department of Agricultural & Applied Economics at Texas Tech University.  Dr. Segarra has been a faculty member at Texas Tech University since 1988.  He earned his Ph.D. in Agricultural Economics from Virginia Tech University in 1986.  His primary research concerns the improvement of decision-making by the consideration of emerging technologies, changes in public policy, and environmental and resource constraints that are likely to affect society at large.




Dr. Michael Giberson, Affiliated Faculty

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Dr. Michael Giberson is an Associate Professor of Practice with the Center for Energy Commerce in the Rawls College of Business at Texas Tech University.  He teaches U.S. Energy Policy and Regulation, Energy Economics, and other energy-related courses.  Formerly, he was an economist with Potomac Economics, Ltd., a leading provider of independent market monitoring and economic analysis to the electric power industry.  Dr. Giberson earned his Ph.D. in Economics from George Mason University in 2004.




Charles Long, Administrator and Economist

Picture of Charles Long



TTU Plaza
Office 308A
(806) 834-4787



Charles Long serves as Administrator and Economist for the Free Market Institute and Instructor of Applied Business Economics in the Jerry S. Rawls College of Business Administration at Texas Tech University.  Prior to joining Texas Tech University, Charles worked in purchasing for a wholesale distribution company near his hometown outside of Philadelphia, worked in fundraising for a DC-based education reform non-profit and completed a non-profit management training program while working as a program associate for a charitable foundation.  Charles earned his bachelor’s degree from Loyola University New Orleans in 2007 and a Master of Science in Economic Policy from Suffolk University in 2009.  While at Suffolk University, he worked as a Research Assistant for the Beacon Hill Institute for Public Policy Research and an adjunct instructor for the Department of Economics.


Rick Weber, Research Associate

Rick Weber, Research Associate


TTU Plaza
Office 308B
(806) 834-3505




Rick Weber is a visiting scholar completing his Ph.D. dissertation studying the interactions among entrepreneurship, public policy, and institutions.  Rick is currently enrolled as an ABD student in the Department of Economics at Suffolk University, where, in addition to completing his graduate coursework, he taught Principles of Microeconomics.  Outside of his academic pursuits, Rick serves as a member of the Board of Directors of MediBid, an online marketplace designed to allow transparency and choice while directly connecting doctors with self-pay patients.


Audrey Redford, Research Assistant

Picture of Audrey Redford


TTU Plaza
Office 308F
(806) 834-7980




Audrey Redford is a second year Ph.D. student in the Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics at Texas Tech University.  Audrey graduated from James Madison University in 2012 with a B.B.A. in Economics with a concentration in Political Economy.  Her research interests include Austrian economics and political economy and their applications to analysis of the war on drugs in the United States.



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