Wheaton Announces Inaugural Hudson T. Harrison Endowed Chair of Entrepreneurship Dr. Denise Daniels ’91

July 30, 2020

Wheaton alumna Dr. Denise Daniels ’91 joins the College faculty as first Hudson T. Harrison Endowed Chair of Entrepreneurship.

253x380 Dr. Denise DanielsWheaton College is pleased to announce the Board of Trustee’s appointment of Dr. Denise Daniels '91 as the inaugural holder of the Hudson T. Harrison Endowed Chair of Entrepreneurship situated in the Department of Business and Economics.

Through the generous gift of the Harrison Family, the Chair was established to stimulate students to turn ideas into both new ventures as entrepreneurs and new businesses within established organizations in both the for-profit and nonprofit contexts. Dr. Daniels joins us this fall semester.

"For more than two decades, Dr. Daniels has studied how entrepreneurs understand their faith in the workplace," said Wheaton College Provost Dr. Margaret Diddams. "Her expertise in leadership development and the role of Christian faith in creating meaningful work will serve us well in developing young leaders who can make meaningful connections between their Christian faith and innovation. She is extremely excited to contribute to our new Center for Faith and Innovation."

Daniels is Professor of Management at Seattle Pacific University, where she has been a faculty member since 1996. A 1991 Wheaton graduate in Business/Economics and Psychology, she earned her Ph.D. in Organizational Behavior from the University of Washington. She is a management scholar with deep theological engagement in her teaching, publications, and consulting work, which focuses on the intersection of Christian vocation, leadership development, and the marketplace.

Currently, she is in the fourth year of a $1.5M grant from the Lilly Foundation to study faith in the workplace. This research examines perceptions of calling, conflict between faith and work, and experiences of faith discrimination at work. The large-scale national mixed-methods study includes focus groups from around the county, a 13,000-person nationally representative survey, and more than 200 in-depth follow-up interviews with survey participants.

Recently, Daniels co-authored the book, "Working in the Presence of God: Spiritual Practices for Everyday Work." Daniels is also the producer of the documentary film and course series Faith & Co., which are designed to inspire deeper connections between faith and work. She is also a recognized scholar in the areas of Sabbath-keeping, theories of work motivation, and leadership—including women in leadership. 

While at SPU, she served as Faculty Chair, the Associate Dean and Interim Dean in the School of Business, Government, and Economics, and as Seattle Pacific’s Associate Vice President for Strategic Initiatives.

Daniels regularly consults and provides executive coaching services and leadership development training in organizational contexts. She is an outside board member for Investortools, a FinTech company creating investment system solutions. She also serves on the board of the Theology of Work Project, an organization that creates and curates biblical, theological, and pastoral resources related to work.

Daniels has been married to Craig Barwell for 25 years, and they have four adolescent and young adult children—one of whom is a current Wheaton undergrad.

Daniels joins the Wheaton College faculty this coming fall semester.