Two of the nation's leading journalists will deliver a rare joint Commencement Address to the Classes of 2007 at the ceremonies this Sunday, May 13 on the Hobart Quadrangle.
President Mark D. Gearan said PBS senior correspondent Judy Woodruff and former CNN and Wall Street Journal reporter Albert R. Hunt will speak to the graduates, their families and friends, and receive honorary degrees in recognition of their lifetime work of reporting and analyzing the major events of our nation and world.
“Judy Woodruff’s path-breaking career as a journalist and Al Hunt’s insightful analysis and reporting combine for what I believe will be a fascinating address to our graduating seniors. Their professional careers as well as their extensive service work are fine examples of lives of consequence, Gearan said.
In addition to the honorary degrees for Woodruff and Hunt, the Board of Trustees has approved recognition of the Colleges’ highest honor to State Senator Michael F. Nozzolio (R-NY) and local community lunch volunteer coordinator Marge Shanahan.
“This year we recognize four individuals at Commencement who symbolize the Colleges’ commitment to service. Each one stands out for their outstanding service to Geneva, our state and our nation, Gearan said.
Woodruff has been one of the top women in journalism for three decades, covering eight presidential elections. Today she serves as senior correspondent for PBS’ “The Newshour with Jim Lehrer, where she has contributed a series of national reports on views of young Americans. Before coming to PBS, Woodruff was NBC’s White House correspondent and was senior correspondent, anchor and the host of CNN's Inside Politics, television’s first program devoted exclusively to the subject.
Hunt, the Washington executive editor for Bloomberg News, is a respected figure in the nation’s capital known for his articulate political insight and analysis. Prior to joining Bloomberg, he worked for The Wall Street Journal as a congressional and national political reporter; bureau chief; and executive Washington editor. Hunt is also the author of the long-running weekly column, “Politics & People. For nearly two decades, Hunt was a regular panelist on CNN’s “The Capital Gang; and was a member of CNN’s “Novak, Hunt & Shields interview show. He has also served as a panelist on NBC’s “Meet the Press and PBS’ “Washington Week in Review, as well as a political analyst for CBS Morning News. He is co-author of several books including a series on U.S. national elections.
Senator Nozzolio began his eighth term in the State Senate in 2007, representing New York’s 54th district. Nozzolio is an outspoken proponent of criminal justice reform and victims’ rights. He is chair of the Senate Crime Victims, Crime and Corrections Committee and serves as a co-chairman of the Senate Majority Task Force on Privacy Invasion. Prior to joining the Senate, Nozzolio served for 10 years in the New York State Assembly. Over the years, he has been honored with numerous awards and accolades for his efforts on behalf of farm workers, sexual assault victims and many others. Senator Nozzolio was instrumental in the creation of the Cornell Agriculture and Food Technology Park in Geneva and has secured millions of dollars in state funding to develop the Technology Park. He has been a stalwart supporter of Hobart and William Smith Colleges, securing $1 million in capital funds for the creation of the Finger Lakes Institute at 601 S. Main St. He continues to acquire significant operating funds that allow for such projects as the study of Owasco Lake.
Shanahan is a pillar in the Geneva community who spends countless hours preparing and serving hot lunches. Overseeing the Geneva Community Lunch Program since 1997, she manages a small army of volunteers that last year served more than 18,000 meals. Through her efforts the program has been able to expand to five days a week. Shanahan has made Geneva Community Lunch an indelible part of the community by encouraging the support of local groups and industries such as Hobart and William Smith Colleges, Geneva General Hospital, Guardian Industries and Cornell’s Agricultural Experiment Station.
Images, from the top: Judy Woodruff, Albert R. Hunt, Marge Shanahan, Senator Michael F. Nozzolio. Higher-resolution versions are available here.