Xavier University established the Besl Family Chair as a part of the Ethics/Religion and Society Program. This program was endowed with the support of a challenge grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities and donations from Timothy Garry, a Xavier alumnus, and three generations of Besl family members.

Current Besl Chair (2014 - 2017)

Adam Konopka is a philosopher specializing in phenomenology and environmental ethics. He received his Ph.D. from Fordham University and his M.A. from Boston College. An early-career scholar, he has already published seven peer-reviewed articles in major journals. He is currently completing a book project entitled Environmental Investigations: Husserl and the Human/Nature Distinction in which he appropriates phenomenological resources from Edmund Husserl to develop a philosophical foundation for environmental ethics. 
Dr. Konopka received the Early Career Scholar Award from the Association of Practical and Professional Ethics in 2013 as well as the 2013 Emerging Scholar Award from the College of Mount St. Joseph.  As a part of his application, he proposed E/RS elective courses such as: “Environmental Justice in the Ohio River Valley,” “Icarus’ Flight: The Myth, Science, and Ethics of Risk,” and “Prometheus’ Theft: Technics and Societal Flourishing.”