George Gallup Jr., son of Gallup poll founder George Gallup passed away this week at 81-years-old.
Gallup joined his fathers firm more than 50 years ago after forgoing his efforts to become an Episcopalian priest and after some time spent as a lay minister in Texas.
According to the New York Times Gallup Jr. never lost his passion for religion and that passion led to his specialization in polling Americans about their religious beliefs, in fact Gallup Jr. was known to call opinion polling a kind of ministry of itself.
Gallup would go on to found the Princeton Religion Research Center while writing several books about religion and spirituality.
During his religious researche George chronicled the rise of evangelical Christianity from the 70s and 80s and he suggested that America is the most religious nation in the world but that we also lack the understanding of theology and religious texts that is observed in other parts of the world.
According to Wall Street Journal in 2003 George Gallup Jr. noted:
“America’s religion is broad but not deep,” he said in 2003. “It’s not that Americans don’t believe anything. They believe everything.”
Gallup was a pioneer in the polling industry and his influence over the market will be truly missed.