Lehigh University
Lehigh University


Call for nominations goes out for commencement speaker

The nomination process for commencement speakers is being opened up to the entire university community, Lehigh President Alice P. Gast announced Monday.

A newly formed Commencement Speaker Nominations Committee, representing undergraduate and graduate students, faculty, and staff, Monday issued a call for nominations for the 2007 commencement speaker. This year’s decision will be made on an expedited timetable. But in future years, the process will be expanded to 18 months to allow Lehigh to attract highly regarded speakers who are in great demand.

In addition to seeking nominations from the campus community, the new committee will also consider potential speakers submitted by alumni and the board of trustees. Under the new selection process, the committee will review the nominations and provide a list of recommended speakers to the president, who will make the final decision.

Nominations for the 2007 commencement speaker will be accepted through Dec. 18, and can be sent to inspkr@lehigh.edu. The committee will submit its recommendations to Gast by Dec. 22. In January, Gast will meet with the committee to discuss her selection, and the choice of commencement speaker will be announced to the campus community as soon as feasible once details are finalized.

The process to choose the 2008 commencement speaker also will begin in January, as the committee starts soliciting nominations. Recommendations will be provided to Gast in May, one year before the 2008 commencement.

According to the criteria, a commencement speaker should be “someone whose work and achievements reflect Lehigh’s value system and whose message is one that will contribute to graduates’ educational experience.”

All nominations will be handled in strict confidence. At no time will any member of the nominations committee release the names of any recommended candidates.

The committee will be made up of three faculty members, three undergraduate students, one graduate student, and three staff members. It will be chaired by a faculty member at large appointed by the faculty.

The committee members will be:

Faculty members
• Faculty member at large appointed by faculty (may be member of Honorary Degree Committee)
• Honorary Degree Committee Chairperson or designee (faculty member)
• University Chaplain (faculty member: coordinates Baccalaureate Service)

Undergraduate students
• Two Junior Class Officers
• Student Senate President or delegate

Graduate student
• Graduate Student Senate President or delegate

Staff members
• Director, Office of the President
• Associate Vice Provost and Dean of Students or delegate
• Alumni Association Junior Class Advisor

Serving on the 2007 Commencement Speaker Nominations Committee are:

Faculty members
• Professor Judith McDonald, Honorary Degree Committee Chair
• Professor Lloyd Steffen, University Chaplain
• Professor Donald Rockwell

Undergraduate students
• Nick Nickitas, Senior Class President
• Cassidy Maumus, Senior Class Vice President
• Cara Diorio, Student Senate President

Graduate student
• Raymond Pugh, Graduate Student Senate President

Staff members
• Joanne Anderson, Director, Office of the President
• Sharon Basso, Associate Vice Provost and Dean of Students
• Colleen Griggs, Alumni Association Senior Class Advisor

--Jack Croft

Posted on Monday, December 04, 2006

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