Charter Day to Celebrate Hobart Heritage – Hobart and William Smith Colleges \
The HWS Update

Charter Day to Celebrate Hobart Heritage

Jeffrey L. Amestoy ’68, P’11, P’14, a Fellow of the Center for Public Leadership at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University, is returning to HWS for the annual Charter Day ceremonies this year at which he will receive the prestigious Hobart Medal of Excellence and serve as the event’s keynote speaker. 

Charter Day commemorates the founding of Hobart College in 1822 and the day on which a provisional charter from the State Regents of New York officially brought the college into being. An important tradition for Hobart students to celebrate the heritage of their alma mater, Charter Day also welcomes distinguished alumni to speak in St. John’s Chapel. This year’s ceremonies will be held beginning at 4:30 p.m. on Friday, April 11.

The Hobart Medal of Excellence, which Amestoy will receive, is awarded by the Alumni Association to an alumnus who, by reason of outstanding accomplishments in his particular business, profession or community service, has brought honor and distinction to his alma mater.

Association President James “JB” Robinson ’96 says he and fellow alums are thrilled to have the opportunity to honor Amestoy. “The Medal of Excellence is the Alumni Association’s highest honor and is given sparingly to Hobart graduates who have achieved great success in their chosen profession or field of service.  By any measure, Jeff has been hugely successful and influential in his career as a lawyer, an Attorney General, and as Chief Justice of the Vermont State Supreme Court.  We are pleased to bring Jeff back home to Hobart to celebrate these many accomplishments.”

In 1999, Amestoy was the author of the Vermont Supreme Court’s opinion in Baker v. State, which held that same-sex couples were constitutionally entitled to the rights and benefits of marriage. In addition to his current role at Harvard University, Amestoy served as the 38th Chief Justice of Vermont’s Supreme Court (1997-2004),  seven terms as Attorney General of Vermont and held the position of President of the National Association of Attorneys General from 1992 to 1993.

“We are excited and proud to honor Jeff for the life of consequence he has led,” says Assistant Vice President for Alumni Relations and Annual Giving Jared Weeden ’91.  “He is a wonderful ambassador for our Colleges and an alumnus who epitomizes all that a Hobart Statesman is meant to be.”

Michael D. Green ’14, a mathematics major and senior captain for Statesmen football, will deliver the student address during the Charter Day ceremony.  He was selected for the Volunteer of the Year Award by the Happiness House, which is noted for its excellent school for children with physical and learning disabilities. Green, an offensive lineman, organized this year’s “Touchdown and Tackles for Happiness House,” an annual fundraiser started in 2010 by former Statesman offensive lineman Jarrid Blades ’12. This year, thanks to Green and his teammates, Hobart surpassed its goal of raising $10,000 for Happiness House.

The Charter Day ceremony will begin at the flag pole on South Main St., followed by a procession to St. John’s Chapel. Selections for the Orange Key, Chimera and Druid Societies will also take place. A special performance by the Hobartones will conclude the ceremony.