Suffolk University Awards Eight Honorary Degrees at May 18 Commencement Exercises


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Mariellen Norris at 617-573-8450
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BOSTON, MA -- Former U.S. Attorney General Janet Reno and Tim Russert of "Meet the Press" were the speakers as Suffolk University awarded eight honorary degrees at its commencement exercises on Sunday, May 18, at the FleetBoston Pavilion on the waterfront. Over eleven hundred students were awarded degrees from Suffolk University Law School, the College of Arts and Sciences and Sawyer School of Management. This was the first commencement ever held at the FleetBoston Pavilion.

Reno, who addressed 428 graduates of Suffolk University Law School at the morning commencement ceremonies, which began at 9:30 a.m., was the nation’s first woman U.S. Attorney General and had the longest-ever tenure in the post. Today, Reno is involved with dispute resolution, advocacy for children and the elderly, and law enforcement reform. A pioneer among women in the field of law, she went from private practice to public service in Florida. In 1978, Reno became the first woman appointed state attorney for Dade County, Florida, and was re-elected four times, focusing on juvenile justice reform and Miami's crime problem. Reno holds degrees from Cornell University and Harvard Law School. She received an honorary Doctor of Laws degree.

Russert delivered the commencement address to 757 graduates of the College of Arts and Sciences and the Sawyer School of Management during the afternoon commencement ceremonies, which began at 2:00 p.m. As moderator of “Meet the Press” since 1991, Russert has interviewed every major figure on the American political scene. He is senior vice president and Washington bureau chief for NBC News, a contributing anchor for MSNBC and serves as political analyst for “Nightly News with Tom Brokaw” and the “Today Show.” He examines the role of the media in American society as anchor of “The Tim Russert Show” weekly on CNBC. Russert received an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree.

The following honorees joined Reno in receiving honorary degrees from the Law School: The Honorable Judith A. Cowin, Associate Justice of the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts, honorary Doctor of Laws; Elaine R. Jones, President and Director-Counsel of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, honorary Doctor of Laws; U.S. Rep. Stephen F. Lynch, congressman from the 9th Congressional District, honorary Doctor of Laws.

Serving as the law school commencement alumni marshall was 25th anniversary class member Diane C. Tillotson, JD’78, of Newton, an attorney with Hemenway & Barnes in Boston. Barbara Carnevale, a day division student from Revere, delivered the student commencement speech to the law graduates.

The following honorees joined Russert in receiving honorary doctoral degrees at the afternoon commencement: Janet Grove, Chairman and CEO of Federated Marketing Group, honorary Doctor of Commercial Science; Larry Lucchino, President/CEO of the Boston Red Sox, honorary Doctor of Laws; Nathan R. Miller of the real estate management and investment firm Nathan Miller Properties, honorary Doctor of Commercial Science.

Serving as the College of Arts and Sciences and the Sawyer School of Management commencement alumni marshall was 25th anniversary class member David G. Saliba, BSBA’78, JD’81, of Winchester, an attorney with Saliba & Saliba in Boston. Kim Duca of Natick, who graduated magna cum laude from the Sawyer School of Management, delivered the student commencement address.

Suffolk University is a private co-educational institution located on Boston’s historic Beacon Hill, providing quality education at an affordable cost for students of all ages and backgrounds. Suffolk has a combined enrollment of more than 7,000 full- and part-time students in its Law School, College of Arts and Sciences, Sawyer School of Management and The New England School of Art and Design.

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