Get to Know this 'Curious, Thoughtful and Passionate' Owner

Join in welcoming one of Chicago Market's Owners, David McKirnan #1542, a retired behavioral researcher and college professor with a keen interest in helping Chicago Market grow and prosper.

Tell us your full name – as well as who else shares your fridge.

I'm David McKirnan. My extended household – around the neighborhood – includes my wife, Nancy Gardner and Lindsay McKirnan, my daughter.

What motivated you to become an Owner of Chicago Market?

I have long been a believer in sustainability and community responsibility. And I would like fresh and organic food within walking distance.

What type of work do you do?

I am retired from the UIC Psychology Department, where I taught and conducted behavioral research. Much of my research was in the LGBTQ community, working at Howard Brown Health Center near Irving Park.

My primary research interests are Health and Health Behavior, so quality food and the creation of community have always been of direct interest to me.

What else is really important to you…and why?

Environmental responsibility and conservation are crucial to me. I got a LEED green certification and designed a LEED-compliant home in Wicker Park before I moved to Uptown.

I would like to see the Co-op serve as a model of sustainable building and operation for the area, and I would like the chance to help facilitate that.

I spend a lot of time outside – hiking, biking, as well as pursuing music and art.

Is there something new you’d like to learn or pursue…either now or someday?

I would like to learn more and participate in food sourcing as part of the Co-op. Whether that be working with farms in the larger area or simply understanding the mechanics of that process.

Do you have a favorite food or “signature dish”?

Be it ever so humble, when I used to visit the Middle East years ago a common street food was chicken or other meats, vegetables and spices rolled up in flatbread. So I make variations on “roll-ups” when I don’t want to “really” cook.

What’s your ‘one wish come true” for Chicago Market? It might be a product for our shelves, a program you’d like to see us offer, a location – you name it!

I would like to see Chicago Market's space become a magnet for the neighborhood. Perhaps featuring local art on a rotating basis, low-cost healthy cooking instruction, etc. 

I would also like Chicago Market to collaborate with innovative Chicago-area aquafarming, composting and other initiatives to bring these innovations to the Uptown neighborhood.

What three words best describe you?

Curious. Thoughtful. Passionate.

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