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Whitworth appoints new occupants to endowed chairs

April 15, 2015

Whitworth University has named two new occupants to existing endowed chairs and has chosen the inaugural holder of a newly created endowed professorship.

Moving into the Bruner-Welch Endowed Chair in Theology position, previously occupied by Professor James Edwards, ’67, will be Professor of Theology Adam Neder. The Lindaman Chair, which promotes public dialogue concerning important social issues, will be occupied by Associate Professor of History Tony Clark. And the initial holder of the Sue Chandler Endowed Professorship in Education will be Associate Professor of Education Lisa Laurier.

Neder joined the Whitworth faculty in 2004 and will be the second faculty member to occupy the Bruner-Welch Chair, replacing Professor of Theology James Edwards, ’67. Neder earned his Ph.D. and M.Div. from Princeton Theological Seminary, and he holds a bachelor’s degree from Covenant College. His areas of expertise include systematic theology, the history of doctrine, Christology and Karl Barth’s theology.

The Bruner-Welch Chair was established in 2006 and named in honor of F. Dale Bruner, one of Whitworth’s most influential and popular theology professors, who is now retired. It is also named for William J. Welch, a longtime elder in the Presbyterian Church, and his wife, Peggy Layman Welch, an active deacon in the church.

Clark, who joined the Whitworth faculty in 2009, will replace Whitworth Political Science Professor Julia Stronks as occupant of the Lindaman Chair. Clark holds a Ph.D. and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Oregon, Eugene, and is an expert in East Asian Late-Imperial China.

The Lindaman Chair was named to honor Whitworth’s 14th president, Edward B. Lindaman, who served from 1970 to 1980. Lindaman’s excellent speaking abilities and great charisma helped attract national attention to the college through many of his off-campus activities. Lindaman encouraged experimentation with the curriculum at the college and believed that a Whitworth education had to be responsive to the many changes occurring in society. The endowed chair is a rotating position for senior Whitworth faculty who are engaged in significant regional and national academic initiatives and who contribute to public dialogue concerning important social issues.

Laurier, the first holder of the Sue Chandler Endowed Professorship in Education, holds an Ed.D, M.Ed. and M.A. from Northern Arizona University, as well as a bachelor’s degree from the University of Redlands (Calif.). She has been a member of Whitworth’s faculty since 2003, and her areas of expertise include secondary curriculum and development, phonemic awareness and counseling.

The Sue Chandler Endowed Professorship in Education was established in fall 2013 by Scott Chandler, ’84, a member of Whitworth’s board of trustees. The professorship is named in honor of Chandler’s wife, Sue, ’85, who has been an instrumental force for improving education in her community of Littleton, Colo. In 2011, Sue received the McGuffey Award from the Colorado Association of School Boards. She has also been recognized by a number of other organizations, including Directors of Volunteers in Agencies and Colorado Association of Partners in Education, for her years of outstanding service in education.

Located in Spokane, Wash., Whitworth is a private liberal arts university affiliated with the Presbyterian church. The university, which has an enrollment of 3,000 students, offers 60 undergraduate and graduate degree programs.


Gretchen Cleveland, executive assistant to the provost, Whitworth University, (509) 777-3702 or

Nancy Hines, director of university communications, Whitworth University, (509) 777-4638 or