This is an archived press release. Some links may no longer function. For assistance, please contact

Jun 13, 2008

DePaul to Welcome Array of Luminaries at 2008 Commencements

A founding member of the musical group Chicago, a groundbreaking woman in the sciences and global nuclear regulation, one of the world’s greatest chefs and restaurateurs, and one of the most prominent voices in 20th century Catholic thought will be among the extraordinary recipients of honorary degrees at DePaul University’s 110th commencement ceremonies.

Below are the dates, times and brief profiles of the recipients and speakers at each of the commencement programs. The June 14 ceremonies will be held at the Civic Opera House, 20 N. Wacker Dr., Chicago, and the June 15 ceremonies will take place at Allstate Arena, 6920 N. Mannheim Rd., Rosemont, Ill. The College of Law's commencement was held May 18.

School of Education, June 14, 8:30 a.m.

Danling Fu is a professor at the University of Florida’s College of Education and an internationally known educator, researcher and consultant who pioneered comprehensive approaches to writing development and literacy for English language learners.

School of Music and The Theatre School, June 14, 11:45 a.m.

Speaker: Daniel “Henry” E. Moran III is a leading producer and administrator of fine arts programs who has played a key role in nurturing, supporting and advancing arts and cultural organizations. He currently serves as director of the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities. Through his efforts, more than 50 million people around the world have enjoyed more than 12,000 performances and events involving more than 600 artists, organizations and museum exhibitions.

Also being honored is Walter Parazaider, a founder of Chicago, one of the most innovative, successful and longest-running popular bands in rock music history. With more than 30 albums released over 40 years, including 13 platinum and five No. 1 in the United States alone, DePaul School of Music alumnus Parazaider has been a major force in music for four decades and helped shape the musical sensibilities of an entire generation.

School for New Learning, June 14, 2:30 p.m.

Speaker: Shirley Ann Jackson is a theoretical physicist known for her research in solid-state, quantum and optical physics. She also is an accomplished executive and diplomat, having served as head of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission in the 1990s. She is currently president of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, one of the nation’s oldest research institutions, which is undergoing a major renaissance under her leadership.

College of Communication and College of Computing and Digital Media (CDM), June 15, 8:30 a.m.

Speaker: Mitchell Kapor, a developer of the revolutionary Lotus 1-2-3 spreadsheet software, is one of the founding fathers of today’s cyber-world. A pioneering software developer and entrepreneur, his software development activities and civil liberties advocacy have profoundly influenced both the structure of today’s information technology industry and the social environment of cyberspace.

Also receiving honorary degrees are:

David Simon is a renowned journalist and award-winning creator and writer of some of the most realistic contemporary police and crime television dramas, including HBO’s “The Wire.” Simon also is the author of the non-fiction book “Homicide: A Year on the Killing Streets,” which served as the basis for the long-running NBC series.

Bob Edwards is one of America’s most distinguished broadcast journalists and a pioneer of public radio news. For more than 35 years, Edwards has informed public debate through exhaustive reporting on political, social and health issues. Currently host of XM Public Radio’s flagship program “The Bob Edwards Show,” he played a crucial role in building the daily news presence of National Public Radio and for decades was the voice of its most popular program, “Morning Edition.”

College of Commerce, June 15, 12:30 p.m.

Speaker: Charlie Trotter is one of the nation’s best-known chefs and proprietor of Charlie Trotter’s in Lincoln Park, widely recognized as one of the finest restaurants in the world. A legendary philanthropist, Trotter has raised more than $2 million in scholarships for students attending culinary institutes, $1.5 million for the American Cancer Society and $200,000 for the Mercy Home for Boys and Girls.

College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, June 15, 4 p.m.

Speaker: Mae C. Jemison is an astronaut, physician, engineer and teacher dedicated to using technology to help the less fortunate. Best known for her 1992 Spacelab mission on the space shuttle Endeavour, in which she become the first African-American woman to travel to space, she also has founded technology firms and a nonprofit foundation that harness scientific discoveries to meet human needs.

Also receiving an honorary degree is Rev. Richard P. McBrien a renowned Catholic theologian, priest and author who has been a prominent voice for inclusiveness and tolerance in the church and for active participation by lay members in the liturgy and other church activities. Author of 20 books and a syndicated weekly theology column that has run in the Catholic press for more than 40 years, McBrien has greatly advanced public understanding of the Catholic faith.


At DePaul's College of Law commencement May 18 at the Civic Opera House, Carla Michelotti, general counsel at Leo Burnett Worldwide, delivered the commencement address. She received an honorary degree for her work as a longtime proponent for freedom of expression and commerce around the world and advocate on behalf of children and other vulnerable members of society at home.

The College of Law also honored the late Jerome Johnson, a distinguished attorney, business manager and community leader, who was a major benefactor of the College of Law during his seven-decade career.

Note to Editors: Due to contractual restrictions, television camera crews will only be permitted to video the first several minutes of Mae Jemison’s speech.

(View Larger Image)
Smiling graduates await their diplomas.

(View Larger Image)
Public radio pioneer Bob Edwards, current host of XM Radio’s interview program “The Bob Edwards Show,” will receive an honorary degree from DePaul's College of Communication June 15.

(View Larger Image)
Restaurateur Charlie Trotter will deliver the commencement speech at DePaul's College of Commerce graduation ceremony June 15.