The University of Wisconsin-Madison Class of 2010 celebrated commencement in five Kohl Center ceremonies May 14, 15 and 16. Speakers this year included U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan and Youth Speaks founder James Kass (‘91 BA L&S).
Duncan joined the Obama administration after seven years as chief executive officer of Chicago Public Schools. Kass is the creator and executive director of the San Francisco-based nonprofit Youth Speaks. The organization helps young people find new ways to apply reading and writing to achieve social change.
Five alumni were selected to receive honorary degrees. Awarded honorary Doctor of Science degrees were
- Ned W. Bechthold (‘59 BS EGR), chair of Payne & Dolan Inc., a Waukesha, Wisconsin-based paving company;
- Robert G. Bush (‘50 BA ALS), chair emeritus of Schreiber Foods in Green Bay, Wisconsin;
- Judith R. Faulkner (‘76 MS L&S), founder and CEO of Epic Systems Corporation in Verona, Wisconsin; and,
- Milton Friend (‘71 PhD ALS), emeritus scientist with the U.S. Geological Survey, National Wildlife Health Center.
Wade Fetzer (‘59 BS L&S), independent director of the Potash Corp of Saskatchewan Inc., received an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree.
Honorary degrees are awarded in recognition of extraordinary accomplishment and achievement. A Wisconsin connection beyond receiving a degree from the University is not a prerequisite to an honorary degree, but many recipients are connected in some way to the state or the University.