Whitworth Communications

For Immediate Release

Nov. 14, 2008

Whitworth Mourns Loss of Longtime Professor

Fenton Duvall, a former long-serving history professor at Whitworth University, died peacefully at the age of 96 in his Florida home on Nov. 11.

A memorial service will be held at Duvall's residence, the John Knox Village Retirement Center, in Pompano Beach, Florida, on Saturday, Nov. 15, at 2 p.m. Memorial gifts to honor Duvall's life may be made to the R. Fenton Duvall Endowed Scholarship Fund at Whitworth University. Contributions can be sent to the Whitworth University Office of Institutional Advancement, 300 W. Hawthorne Rd., Spokane, WA 99251. For more information, please call (800) 532-4668 or (509) 777-3243.

Duvall joined the Whitworth faculty in 1949. During his tenure at Whitworth he served as professor of history, co-founded the Core program with Professor Emeritus of English Clarence Simpson, and became the first faculty member to lead an international Jan Term study program. He also served as dean of students for four years.

"Fenton, along with fellow legend Clem Simpson, left an imprint on Whitworth that still influences the way in which we select and support our faculty," Whitworth President Bill Robinson wrote in a message to the campus community. "The culture we treasure today was shaped significantly by Fenton Duvall."

Duvall's last visit to the Whitworth campus was in fall 2006 for the dedication ceremony of Duvall Hall. A group of alumni contributed in Duvall's name to the building fund and asked that the residence hall be named after their favorite professor and mentor.

At the building dedication, Whitworth Vice President for Student Life and Dean of Students Kathleen Storm said that when Duvall was interviewed several years ago, he spoke about the spirit he had found and valued at Whitworth. "I believe you can truly have a Christian liberal arts college where the commitment to Christ is firm and strong and deep and positive," Duvall said. "But, at the same time, you're not afraid to be open to ambiguities and paradoxes and the fact that we don't have all the answers."


Greg Orwig, director of communications, (509) 777-4580 or gorwig@whitworth.edu.

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