On Sunday, May 16, HWS will send off the Classes of 2010 at the 99th Commencement of William Smith College and the 185th of Hobart, following a week of activities for seniors.
As the culmination of a year-long conversation around the topic of global citizenship at Hobart and William Smith Colleges, Daniel Glickman, President of Refugees International, will deliver the Commencement Address. Refugees International is the leading advocacy organization on refugee crises worldwide.
In addition to addressing the graduates, Glickman will be one of five recipients of honorary degrees at Commencement. Other honorary degree recipients include Arthur Eve P’89, former New York State Assemblyman and Founder of HEOP; Patricia Heieck, catering manager of Dining Services at Hobart and William Smith; and George and Harriet McDonald who created and operate the Doe Fund in New York City.
“Through speakers, forums and events throughout this academic year, we have gained a better and deeper understanding of our responsibilities as global citizens,” says President Mark D. Gearan. “Those honored at Commencement represent the institution’s acknowledgement of service at the State and local levels, as well as in our Hobart and William Smith community.”
With a distinguished career in public service and as a champion in the fight against hunger in the United States and around the world, Glickman represented Kansas for 18 years as a member of Congress. In 1995, President William J. Clinton appointed Glickman as Secretary of Agriculture. Under his leadership, the Department administered farm and conservation programs, forged international trade agreements to expand U.S. markets, and improved its commitment to fairness and equality in civil rights. The department also made significant inroads in improving American’s diet and nutrition while fighting hunger.
Refugees International advocates for lifesaving assistance and protection for displaced people and promotes solutions to displacement crises. As president, Glickman is focused on strengthening the organization’s base of support and providing the strategic vision and leadership to improve its ability to compel world leaders to provide clean water, food, health care and other basic assistance to people uprooted by conflict.
Prior to joining Refugees International this spring, Glickman served as chair and chief executive officer of the Motion Picture Association of America.
“While I have truly enjoyed my experience at the Motion Picture Association of America, it is time for me to return to my true passion: public service,” says Glickman. “Refugees International has important work to do and I can’t sit on the sidelines as the world sees more and more people forced from their homes every day. I am very excited about this extraordinary opportunity to make a significant difference in the lives of the most vulnerable people in the world.”
A public policy expert, Glickman served as the Director of the Institute of Politics at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government from 2002 to 2004. He recently co-authored a bipartisan study for the Chicago Council on Global Affairs titled “Renewing American Leadership in the Fight Against Global Hunger and Poverty.” The Global Child Nutrition Foundation awarded him the 2010 Gene White Lifetime Achievement Award for Child Nutrition.
Glickman is vice-chair of Friends of the World Food Program, a member of the Genocide Prevention Task Force, and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. He serves on the board of directors of the American Film Institute, Chicago Mercantile Exchange, Hain Celestial Group, Communities in Schools, Food Research and Action Center, National 4-H Council, the William Davidson Institute and the Center for U.S. Global Engagement. He is also a member of the Kansas Bioscience Authority and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences.
A member of the Kansas and The District of Columbia Bars, he was a partner in the law firm of Sargent, Klenda and Glickman and worked as a trial attorney at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. He received his B.A. in history from the University of Michigan and his J.D. from The George Washington University.
“Dan Glickman is a wonderful example of a life dedicated to service and civic engagement. It is my hope that his words will inspire our graduating seniors to continue to make service a part of their everyday lives going forward,” says Gearan.
Arthur O. Eve represented districts in Buffalo, N.Y., as a Democratic member of the New York State Assembly for 35 years – longer than any other incumbent member. He served as Deputy Speaker of the Assembly for more than 20 of those years, making him the highest ranking African American in the State Legislature at that time. During his first term, he initiated a movement to establish Search for Education, Elevation and Knowledge (SEEK) and Higher Educational Opportunity Programs (HEOP) throughout New York. The HEOP program has since been named for him. He led the New York State Black and Puerto Rican Legislative Caucuses in 1975 and 1976 and, in 1977, was the first African American to win the Buffalo Mayoral Democratic Primary. During the 1971 Attica Prison riot, he led a committee of public officials trying to resolve the conflict. He later testified on behalf of the inmates in the 1992 civil-liability trial and was appointed by Gov. George Pataki to the Attica Task Force that met with families of surviving Attica prison employees and negotiated reparations.
After retiring, Eve established Freedom, Justice and Hope, a non-profit organization advocating for children and families of New York State. Eve holds an associate’s degree from Erie Community College and a bachelor of science from West Virginia State College. He served in the U.S. Army, running a program for orphans while stationed in Germany.
Patricia Heieck P’88 began her professional career as a second grade teacher in New York and Vermont. After starting a family, in 1976 she joined Dining Services at Hobart and William Smith Colleges and has been with the Colleges ever since. An integral member of the campus community, Heieck has planned meals for more than 17,000 students and alums. She works one-on-one with faculty, staff and students to create innumerable customized events annually. She has managed catering for events in celebration of hundreds of visiting dignitaries including heads of state, 18 Elizabeth Blackwell Award Recipients and nearly 50 honorary degree recipients. In three decades with the Colleges, her work has included dinners and celebrations related to Commencement; parents and family weekend; admissions events; Reunion weekends; the William Smith Centennial; summer Kids Colleges and Kids Camps; weddings; memorials; and gatherings of faculty, staff, clubs and organizations. She has worked with four HWS Presidents. In 2008, she was honored during Centennial Weekend by Hai Timiai with an inaugural Hai Timiai Award. She was chosen for “her tireless dedication to student services and her invaluable advice and leadership.”
George McDonald was a private sector executive when New York City’s homeless crisis began to peak in the early 1990s. He ran the New York City volunteer office for Ted Kennedy’s presidential campaign and ran for Congress on a platform of ending homelessness. Eventually, he decided to leave his lucrative career and devote himself full-time to drawing public attention to the homeless problem. What started as raising money to provide cash assistance for homeless individuals grew to the development of the Doe Fund, an organization that empowers homeless men and women to achieve lives of self-sufficiency. It does this through, among other means, a residential paid work and training program. In 1991, Mayor David N. Dinkins invited McDonald to participate in a Commission on Homelessness headed by then Housing and Urban Development Secretary Andrew Cuomo. Together the members of the Commission created “The Way Home,” a model for addressing homelessness that has since served as a blueprint for homeless policy locally and nationally.
Harriet McDonald is the executive vice president of the Doe Fund and a Hollywood screenwriter. She and her husband worked together to develop and implement “Ready, Willing & Able,” the first residential paid work and training program for homeless people. As part of this initiative, they secured the funding to purchase and renovate an abandoned building on Gates Avenue, in Brooklyn, and a work contract to hire and train people to renovate city-owned apartments for occupancy by homeless families. Their idea was to forge a workforce from single homeless men and to house them at the Gates Avenue residence. George and Harriet went to the streets, to Grand Central, and to every men’s shelter in the city to recruit participants. From day one, the men outperformed the expectations of the city contract.
The Commencement ceremony will be held on the Colleges’ Quad. For more information on this year’s graduation, visit the Commencement page.