Former Ohio governor, diplomat Celeste to speak at Commencement

Clark will hold its 105th Commencement on Sunday, May 23, on the Jefferson Academic Center Green. The procession, from the Kneller Athletic Center to the Campus Green, begins at 1:15 p.m., and ceremonies start at 1:30 p.m.

Richard F. Celeste, president of Colorado College, will deliver the Commencement address.

For further information about the ceremony and speakers, and for updates, visit Clark's Commencement pages or contact the Marketing and Communications Office, at 508-793-7441.

Celeste began his term as 12th president of Colorado College in July 2002. Prior to assuming that role, he served as the United States ambassador to India. His public service experience also includes two terms as governor of Ohio, service as director of the United States Peace Corps, and one term as lieutenant governor of Ohio. In the private sector, Celeste was a managing partner of Celeste and Sabety Ltd., an economic development consultancy. He taught urban economics at John Carroll University, and served as a visiting fellow in public policy at Case Western University.

Richard F. Celeste

Richard F. Celeste

Currently chair of the Board of Trustees of the Health Effects Institute in Boston, Celeste is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and a lifetime national associate of the National Academies. He is a board member of the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities (NAICU), the president of the Colorado Springs Downtown Partnership and an advisory board member of the Institute of International Education.

Celeste is a 1959 graduate of Yale University. A Rhodes Scholar in 1960, he studied at Oxford University/Exeter College from 1961 to 1962. He was a Carnegie Teaching Fellow in History at Yale in 1969. Celeste will receive a Doctor of Laws degree.

Other Honorary Degree recipients will be Jessie Gruman, James Welu and The Honorable D’Army Bailey ’65.

Jessie Gruman is the founder and president of the Center for Advancing Health, an independent Washington-based nonprofit organization funded by the Annenberg Foundation, the W.K. Kellogg Foundation and other foundations. The Center's efforts are aimed at increasing patient engagement and are based in the belief that people will not benefit from the health care available to them unless they participate fully and competently in it. Gruman draws on her own cancer treatment experiences, surveys, peer-reviewed research and interviews with patients and caregivers as the basis of her work to describe – and advocate for policies and practices to overcome – the challenges people face in finding and using safe, decent health care. She serves on the board of trustees of the Center for Medical Technology Policy, the Advisory Panel on Medicare Education of DHHS, the board of Center for Information Therapy and the Technical Board of the Milbank Memorial Fund.

Gruman has worked on this same set of concerns in the private sector (AT&T), the public sector (National Institutes of Health) and the voluntary health sector (American Cancer Society). She holds a B.A. from Vassar College and a Ph.D. in Social Psychology from Columbia University and is a Professorial Lecturer in the School of Public Health and Health Services at The George Washington University. Gruman will receive a Doctor of Science degree.

Gruman is the author of “The Experience of the American Patient: Risk, Trust and Choice” (Health Behavior Media, 2009); “Behavior Matters” (Health Behavior Media, 2008) and “AfterShock: What to Do When the Doctor Gives You – or Someone You Love – a Devastating Diagnosis” (Walker Publishing, 2007), as well as scientific papers and opinion essays and articles published in the national media.

James Welu is director of the Worcester Art Museum, the second-largest art museum in New England. He completed his undergraduate work at Loras College in 1966 and graduate work in studio art and art history at Notre Dame. After teaching for several years, he pursued a doctorate at Boston University. Welu will receive a Doctor of Humane Letters.

While completing his dissertation in 17th-century Dutch and Flemish painting, he came to Worcester to teach at Clark and at the Worcester Art Museum. He joined the museum staff as assistant curator in 1974, served as chief curator from 1980 to 1986, when he became the museum’s director. He was chair of the accreditation commission for the American Association of Museums from 2006 to 2009. He has also served as president of the Association of Art Museum Directors and as director of Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Central Massachusetts.

The Honorable D’Army Bailey, a recently retired circuit court judge in Tennessee, attended Booker T. Washington High School in Memphis and graduated from Clark in 1965. He originally enrolled at Southern University in Baton Rouge, but was expelled for participating in demonstrations against segregation. Clark students heard about his ouster and raised $2,400 to bring him to Worcester to complete his education.

Upon completing his Juris Doctorate at Yale University in 1967, he served as national director of the Law Students Civil Rights Research Council in New York from 1967 to 1968; as staff attorney to the San Francisco Neighborhood Legal Assistance Foundation 1968 to 1970; and as program adviser to the Field Foundation in New York from 1970 to 1971. Elected to the City Council in Berkeley, California, in 1971, he was ousted in a recall election after two years because of his controversial Black Nationalist politics.

Bailey returned to his hometown of Memphis, where he practiced law from 1974 to 1990. In 1983, he began his fight to preserve the Lorraine Motel, the site of Dr. Martin Luther King's assassination. Finally, after years of fundraising, Bailey's vision was realized in 1991 when the Lorraine Motel building was restored and transformed into the National Civil Rights Museum.

He became a jurist in 1990, when he was elected Circuit Court Judge in Tennessee's 30th Judicial District. Reelected in 1998, Judge Bailey continued in that role until his retirement in 2009.

Judge Bailey is the author of “The Education of a Black Radical: A Southern Civil Rights Activist’s Journey, 1959-1964.” He has been a passionate supporter of civil rights and has remained engaged with Clark, where he recently spoke at a Difficult Dialogues Symposium and at the Jonas Clark Fellows dinner in October. Bailey will receive a Doctor of Laws degree.

For further information about the ceremony and speakers, and for updates, visit Clark's Commencement pages or contact the Marketing and Communications Office, at 508-793-7441.

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