On May 8, we kicked off our Commencement season as the Law School ushered in the next generation of attorneys at the 33rd Annual Commencement. Chief State Judge Jonathan Lippman, an influential figure in the New York State judicial system for the past four decades, was awarded a Doctor of Laws. Lippman has played a central role in many far-reaching reforms including the introduction of problem-solving community courts, drug courts, and domestic violence courts throughout the state.
On May 20, Westchester undergraduates will celebrate Commencement at the Goldstein Fitness Center on the PLV Campus. And both our NYC undergraduate students and our Westchester and New York graduate students will celebrate at the iconic Avery Fisher Hall, one of Lincoln Center’s most prestigious venue, located a block from Central Park, on Sunday, May 22. (See dates and times for Commencement here.)
Honorary degrees will be awarded at the three ceremonies to individuals who have had a profound impact in the fields of academia, medicine, business, and entertainment, while also contributing to society at large.
Joseph M. Pastore Jr., PhD, Professor Emeritus in Residence at Pace’s Lubin School of Business, will receive an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters at the Westchester Undergraduate Ceremony. Pastore is not only a beloved professor, but also a sought-after expert on business management and a mediator, who was in charge of overseeing the desegregation of Yonkers’ public schools in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Brown v. Board of Education.
At our New York City Undergraduate ceremony, Dr. Jo Ivey Boufford, president of the New York Academy of Medicine, will receive an honorary Doctorate of Science. An influential leader in health care, Boufford is a national authority on public health issues, including health care for minorities and underserved communities, and has been active in local, national, and global health care reform. As “NYC’s doctor,” she leads the charge to protect and advance the health of people through interdisciplinary approaches to policy, leadership, education, community engagement, and innovative research.
Jim Whitaker, chairman and producer of Whitaker Entertainment at Walt Disney Studios, will receive an honorary Doctor of Fine Arts at the combined NYC and Westchester Graduate Ceremony. Whitaker, who rose from intern to president of motion picture production at Imagine Entertainment, has executive produced Changeling, American Gangster, Friday Night Lights, Cinderella Man, Curious George, 8 Mile, and various other notable films. Most recently, Whitaker founded Project Rebirth, a nonprofit that for the past nine years has used time-lapse photography to chronicle the reconstruction of the World Trade Center site. Rebirth, the powerful feature-length documentary which Whitaker directed and co-produced, premiered at the 2011 Sundance Film Festival to critical acclaim and will soon be part of a permanent exhibit at the National September 11 Memorial and Museum.