Close Menu

Whitworth University awards honorary degree to San Francisco Giants pitcher Jeremy Affeldt for humanitarian efforts

February 5, 2015

Recognizing his extraordinary work as an advocate for social justice, Whitworth University presented an honorary bachelor's degree to San Francisco Giants pitcher Jeremy Affeldt at Whitworth's 125th spring convocation ceremony on Thursday, Feb. 5, in Cowles Auditorium.

Affeldt’s degree, given honoris causa, was presented by Whitworth President Beck A. Taylor in recognition of Jeremy’s efforts which have been largely accomplished through his Spokane nonprofit organization Generation Alive, which Affeldt founded in 2005. Generation Alive’s primary focus is to provide opportunities to young people seeking to help others who are living in pain caused by extreme poverty or injustice.

“Because Jeremy Affeldt’s efforts are so closely aligned with Whitworth’s service-learning efforts and with Christ’s mandate to reach out to those in need, Whitworth is especially pleased to be able to present this honorary degree,” Taylor said during the ceremony. “[This degree] goes to a man whose power on the mound is matched only by his strength of character and his rock-solid belief in freeing the oppressed and feeding the hungry – a man who earns accolades in the sporting world and who earns thanks and admiration from those outside baseball whom he has made it his life’s mission to help.”

In 2014, Generation Alive partnered with Whitworth students, faculty, staff, alums, friends and community volunteers to raise $150,000 and pack 600,000 meals, which were then distributed by Second Harvest of the Inland Northwest to hungry people in Spokane, as well as to Nicaraguans in need.

Generation Alive works closely in conjunction with other compassion-based non-profits including Not for Sale, C3 Missions International, Living Water International, One World Futbol Project and Second Harvest Food Bank.

Affeldt, who is a graduate of Northwest Christian High School in Colbert, Wash., was drafted by the Kansas City Royals in the third round of the 1997 Major League Baseball draft. His debut with the Royals took place in 2002, and he has been in the majors ever since, pitching in both starting and relief roles. In 2006, Affeldt was traded to the Colorado Rockies, and he was a member of the Rockies team that went to the 2007 World Series. After one season with the Cincinnati Reds, he signed with the San Francisco Giants in 2009. Since then, the Giants have won three World Series, in all of which Affeldt made significant contributions. Most recently, Affeldt pitched two-and-a-third scoreless innings as the winning pitcher in the seventh game of the 2014 World Series.

Watch Affeldt get a crash-course in the Whitworth experience here:

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


Patti Green, executive assistant to the president and board secretary, Whitworth University, (509) 777-4665 or

Lucas Beechinor, media relations manager, Whitworth University, (509) 777-4703 or