2015 Commencement Speakers Announced

As Dartmouth readies for this year's commencement ceremonies, the 2015 Class Council has announced the speakers and degree recipients who will be recognized this year.

As Dartmouth readies for this year’s commencement ceremonies, the 2015 Class Council has announced the speakers and degree recipients who will be recognized this year.

In an email to campus earlier this morning, the 2015 Class Council announced this year’s commencement speaker and honorary degree recipients.

Following on the heels of Shonda Rhimes’ widely acclaimed address last spring, New York Times columnist David Brooks will address graduating seniors as this year’s class speaker. A graduate of the University of Chicago and an alumnus of The Weekly Standard and The Wall Street Journal, Brooks is widely acclaimed for his ability to distill conservative political positions and articulate them to a bi-partisan audience. This skill should come in handy as he addresses a group of students that has been involved in everything from the Freedom Budget and office sit-ins to divestment campaigns and Phiesta boycotts. Hopefully, last year’s spate of speaker boycotts will not revisit Hanover this spring and Brooks’ address will do more to unite the campus than it does to divide it.

Other honorary degree recipients include:

  • Russell Carson ’65, the co-founder of the private equity firm Welsh, Carson, Anderson & Stowe, and former member of Dartmouth’s Board of Trustees.
  • Steven Chu, President Obama’s former Secretary of Energy and a professor of physics and biology at Stanford University.
  • Earl Lewis, the president of the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and a former professor of history and African American Studies at Emory University.
  • William Neukom ’64, the former executive vice president of law and corporate affairs at Microsoft and the CEO and founder of the World Justice Project.
  • Terry Plank ’85, a MacArthur Fellow and Columbia geochemist whose research focuses on the dynamics of plate tectonics and subduction zones.
  • Valerie Steele ’78, the director and curator of the Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology and the author of more than twenty books on the evolution of fashion.

The Review salutes the diversity of the professions and backgrounds that these selections represent and looks forward to seeing what June’s commencement ceremonies have in store for the College.