Speakers

Commencement Speakers

2010s
2014 Vivian A. Bull, President, Drew University
2013 Frank Occhiogrosso, Professor of English
2012 The Honorable Barry T. Albin, Associate Justice, New Jersey Supreme Court
2011 Shirley Ann Jackson, President, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
2010 Michael Lewis, Author
2000s
2009 Gerald Stern, Poet
2008 Cory Booker, Mayor of the City of Newark, New Jersey
2007 Richard Codey, President New Jersey Senate
2006 Candy Crowley, Senior Political Correspondent, CNN
2005 Thomas H. Kean, President of Drew University
2004 Shirley Tilghman, President of Princeton University
2003 James E. McGreevey, Governor of New Jersey
2002 Bill Cosby, Actor
2001 Richard Holbrooke, Former Ambassador to U.N.
2000 Bill Richardson, U.S. Secretary of Energy
1990s
1999 Christopher Reeve, Actor
1998 James Earl Jones, Actor
1997 Christine Todd Whitman, Governor of New Jersey
1996 First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton
1995 Andrew Shue, Do Something
Wendy Kopp, Teach for America
1994 Mario Cuomo
1993 Olympia Dukakis, Actress
1992 David Halberstam, Author
1991 Thomas Pickering, U.N. Ambassador
1990 George Romney, Former Governor of Michigan
1980s
1989 Arno Penzias
1988 Rosalyn Yalow
1987 John Amos, Actor
1986 Richard Reeves, Journalist
1985 Bill Bradley, U.S. senator
1984 John Brademas, President of NYU
1983 Marie L. Garibaldi, New Jersey Supreme Court Justice
1982 Thomas H. Kean, Governor of New Jersey
1981 Dr. William O. Baker, Chairman (ret) Bell Laboratories
1980 Eudora Welty, Novelist, Pulitzer Prize Winner
1970s
1979 Alan Alda, Actor
1978 Jean Rey, Ministre d’Etat of Belgium
1977 Jennifer E. Beaver ’77, representing all of the schools
1976 Millicent Fenwick, Congresswoman, Fifth District of New Jersey
1975 Kenneth E. Grebenstein, SGA President, representing all schools
1974 Terry Sanford, President of Duke University
1973 William Pearson Tolley, Chancellor Emeritus, Syracuse University
1972 Otto Klineberg, Director of the International Center for Intergroup Relations
1971 James E. Cheek, President of Howard University
1970 William R. Keast, President of Wayne State Universitiy
1960s
1969 Louis T. Benezet, President of Claremont University Center
1968 Sharvy G. Umbeck, Chair of the American Council on Education
1967 Erwin D. Canham, Editor in Chief, Christian Science Monitor
1966 Harry D. Gideonse, President Brooklyn College, CUNY
1965 Harrison E. Salisbury, Assistant Managing Editor, New York Times
1964 Robert Fisher Oxnam, President of Drew University
1963 Robert Fisher Oxnam, President of Drew University
1962 Robert Fisher Oxnam, President of Drew University
1961 Robert Fisher Oxnam, President of Drew University
1960 Hugh L. Dryden, Deputy Administrator, NASA
1950s
1959 Fred G. Holloway, President of Drew University
1958 Charles C. Parlin
1957 C. Douglas Dillon, Deputy Under Secretary of State
1956 Fred G. Holloway, President of Drew University
1955 Fred G. Holloway, President of Drew University
1954 Fred G. Holloway, President of Drew University
1953 Fred G. Holloway, President of Drew University
1952 Fred G. Holloway, President of Drew University
1951 Arolo Ayres Brown, President Emeritus, Drew University
1950 The Rev. Donald B. Aldrich, Dean of the Chapel, Princeton University

Degree Recipients

Honorary Degree Recipients

2014 In Hwan Kim
Hugh A. D’Andrade
2013 Hedy Brasch
Edward W. Poitras
2012 Barry T. Albin
Barbara Morris Caspersen
Edmund D. Pellegrino
Wilbert Mitchell
2011 Maxine Clarke Beach
Clarence B. Jones
Joan C. Verplanck
Shirley Ann Jackson
2010 John Shelby Spong
Judy Shepard
Arturo A. Valenzuela
Michael Lewis
2009 Gerald Stern
Arnold Demain
2009 Nina Wells
2008 Cory Booker
David Grant
Mary Sue Sweeney Price
Joseph Blotner
2007 Richard J. Codey
Ernest S. Lyght
Eugene M. Lang
Jean B. Gazarian
2006 Kevin Murphy
Susan M. Morrison
2005 Bonnie Monte
Victor Parsonnet
2004 Shirley M. Tilghman
Clement Price
Roger H. Martin
Rodney Frelinghuysen
2003 James E. McGreevey
Vivian A. Bull
Sol Gittleman
Larry Shinn
2002 William H. Cosby Jr.
Raymond A. Brown
Deborah T. Poritz
Warren J. Sinsheimer
2001 Richard Holbrooke
Pita John Ala’ilima
Heath B. McLendon
James H. Pain
2000 Bill Richardson
Barbara Bell Coleman
Michele K. Guhl
1999 Christopher Reeve
Helen C. Fenske
Lawrence Horner
1998 James Earl Jones
Herman A. Estrin
Melville D. Miller
1997 Christine Todd Whitman
Fred M. Kirby II
DeForest Soaries
1996 Hillary Rodham Clinton
Alfredo Martinez Moreno
Nancy Schaenen
1995 Andrew Shue
Wendy Kopp
Robert C. Woolley
Dorothy Young
1994 Mario Cuomo
Donald Payne
George Eberhardt
1993 Olympia Dukakis
Jeffrey Smith
Hae-Jong Kim
Ruth Churchill
1992 David Halberstam
Robert Luciano
Althea Gibson
Rand Castile
1991 Thomas R. Pickering
Sharpe James
Albert Baez
Kathleen Di Chiara
1990 George Romney
Raymond Chambers
Mary Smith
John Henry Kruse
1989 Thomas H. Denman
Grace Murray Hopper
Arno A. Penzias
1988 George DeStevens
George G. Reader
Leonard J. Soucy Jr.
Rosalyn S. Yalow
1987 John Allen Amos Jr.
Horton Foote
Jerome Hines
1986 Richard Reeves
Richard Walker
1985 Bill Bradley
Bruce Ritter
William James
George Kelsey
1984 John Brademas
Saul Cooperman
Barent Johnson
1983 Marie L. Garibaldi
Sam Jaffe
Bettye Ackerman
Lewis Thomas
1982 Thomas H. Kean
Albert W. Merck
Robert W. Edgar
William H. Gray III
Vartan Gregorian
1981 William O. Baker
Tai-Young Lee
1980 Eudora Welty
1979 Alan Alda
1978 Ruth Cameron Webb
Jean Rey
1977 Alexander L. Boraine
Maud Keister Jensen
Robert Fillen Smith
Manas Buthelezi
1976 Millicent Fenwick
John T. Cunningham
1975 John Lewis Pepin
1974 Allan H. Gilbert
Terry Sanford
1972 Owen Barfield
Otto Klineberg
Prince Albert Taylor Jr.
1971 James Edward Cheek
John Edward Horner
Luigi G. Ligutti
William Paul Stillman
Ignatius Yacob, III
1970 Frank Lusk Babbott
Peter Randolph Jennings

2015 Speaker & Degree Nominations

2015 Speaker & Honorary Degree Nominations

The Honorary Degrees Committee has begun the selection process for the 2015 commencement speaker and honorary degree recipients. The University endeavors to identify men and women who have made outstanding contributions to society and whose character and actions represent those of the University community. It is hoped that those chosen as commencement speaker and honorary degree recipients will serve as an inspiration and role model to members of the graduating class, exemplify the utility of a liberal arts education and leave graduates with a message that resonates with them beyond their last moment as students.

Specifically, the committee also endeavors to recognize individual creativity, distinguished service, significant scholarship and extraordinary accomplishments in the arts, humanities, sciences, the professions or in service to mankind. In making its decisions regarding candidacy, the committee takes into account the diversity of the pool. Candidates must not have received an honorary degree from the University previously, and special attention will be given to individuals who have had a relationship to Drew.

Your letter of nomination should include:

  • your relationship with the nominee,
  • the nominee’s relationship with Drew and
  • the reason why the nominee should be considered.