William A. Graham is Dean of Harvard Divinity School. He has been a member of the Harvard Faculty of Arts and Sciences since 1973. He has served as director of the Center for Middle Eastern Studies, Master of Currier House, and chair of the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations, the Committee on the Study of Religion, and the Core Curriculum Subcommittee on Foreign Cultures at Harvard. He is also former chair of the Council on Graduate Studies in Religion (U.S. and Canada). His scholarly work has focused on early Islamic religious history and textual traditions and problems in the history of world religion. In October 2000 he received the quinquennial Award for Excellence in Research in Islamic History and Culture from the Research Centre for Islamic History, Art and Culture (IRCICA), the research institute of the Organisation of the Islamic Conference.
Graham has held John Simon Guggenheim and Alexander von Humboldt research fellowships and is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He is the author of Beyond the Written Word: Oral Aspects of Scripture in the History of Religion (1987, 1993); Divine Word and Prophetic Word in Early Islam (1977; American Council of Learned Societies History of Religions Prize, 1978); co-author of The Heritage of World Civilizations (8th rev. ed., 2008) and Three Faiths, One God (2002); and co-editor of Islamfiche: Readings from Islamic Primary Sources (1982-87). He is also the author of numerous articles and reviews. He is a summa graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and holds honorary doctorates from UNC and Lehigh University.