Philip Cornick received his bachelors degree from the University of Tennessee in 1903, later becoming head of the land department of the Bank of Sonora, Mexico. During World War I he served as an officer in the Army Corps of Engineers. After the war, he joined the faculty of Columbia University as a research specialist on the staff of the Institute of Public Administration. He remained with the institute when it became an independent research institution and served as a senior researcher until his retirement in 1947. Frequently on loan from the institute to the Federal Housing Authority and the Tennessee Valley Authority, he conducted a TVA study in the 1930s that led to many reforms in its administrative practices. Cornick also helped a number of states reform real estate taxes and develop land value taxation codes. He was an opponent of Richard T. Ely's land speculation
theories; he led the Henry George movement for land value taxation and free trade. Member, International Fraternity of Lambda Alpha, New York Chapter.