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Whitworth Honors Big Table Founder Kevin Finch and Installs Professor Nathan L. King as the Edward B. Lindaman Endowed Chair at Fall Convocation

September 6, 2023

Whitworth University invites the community to attend Fall Convocation on Thursday, Sept. 7, at 11 a.m. in Cowles Auditorium.

President Scott McQuilkin will deliver the convocation address, titled “At the Table.” Provost & Executive Vice President Gregor Thuswaldner will then present the Distinguished Community Service Award to Kevin Finch, the founder and executive director of Big Table, a local nonprofit serving restaurant and hospitality workers.

Finch, a former pastor and food critic for several Spokane publications, launched the nonprofit in 2009. While writing about the food service industry, he realized nearly half of all those working in it fell below the “survival” income line set by economists. Big Table takes referrals of those needing financial or other assistance and serves up the help they need. The nonprofit is now located in Spokane, San Diego, Colorado Springs and Nashville, Tenn., and serves about 2,000 people.

Following this presentation, McQuilkin will install Nathan L. King, professor of philosophy, as the university’s Edward B. Lindaman Endowed Chair. King has taught at Whitworth since 2010. 

King’s research interests include the studies of intellectual character, faith and doubt, and business ethics. His book, The Excellent Mind: Intellectual Virtues for Everyday Life, was among the 10 most read books in philosophy published by Oxford University Press in 2021. He has lectured on the intellectual virtues at several universities, including Wake Forest and Universidad Austral (Argentina), where a Spanish translation of the book was just released. 

During his time as the Lindaman Chair, King will continue his research on intellectual virtues, serving as the philosophy director of an interdisciplinary grant with psychologists from Wake Forest University and supported by a generous grant from the John Templeton Foundation. 

King’s edited volume, Endurance, due out next year, brings together scholars from philosophy, psychology, religion, law and medicine to explore such virtues as perseverance, resilience, patience and constancy. He also plans a book, Reconstructing Your Faith, intended to help Christians navigate periods of religious doubt. Finally, he plans to explore how an empirically informed understanding of moral character might help businesses design their choice architecture so as to encourage virtuous behavior. 

For those who cannot attend convocation in person, the livestream can be accessed here

About Whitworth University:

Located in Spokane, Wash., Whitworth is a private liberal arts university affiliated with the Presbyterian church. The university, which has an enrollment of about 2,500 students, offers more than 100 undergraduate and graduate degree programs. 


Trisha Coder, media relations manager, Whitworth University, (509) 777-4703 or