As approximately 2,000 students receive their bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees at 2015 commencement ceremonies on Sunday, May 17, four esteemed professionals from fields such as the military, medicine and entertainment also will be recognized with honorary degrees.
Students and families attending the commencement ceremony at the Veale Convocation, Recreation and Athletic Center will hear from one of recipients directly: former Warner Bros. CEO and Chairman Barry Meyer (LAW ’67), the 2015 commencement speaker.
Meyer will share the experiences and unconventional decisions that shaped his 42-year career at Warner Bros. (including 14 years as CEO). A lawyer by training, Meyer never officially held the role of attorney, but his years at the entertainment conglomerate required him to regularly apply the skills he acquired while earning his J.D. at Case Western Reserve. Known for his low-key, collegial management style, Meyer has been described by media as “one of showbiz’s most respected CEOs and a much-admired figure,” “very smart and very decent,” and “a source of stability in a choppy sea.”
Along with Meyer, President Barbara R. Snyder also will present honorary degrees to Norman Augustine, former Lockheed Martin Corp. CEO and chairman; Stanley Bergman, Henry Shein Inc. CEO and chairman; and Adel Mahmoud, professor of molecular biology and public policy at Princeton University.
“This year’s recipients span a range of disciplines, yet each possesses great vision, energy and commitment to engage actively in the public sphere,” President Barbara R. Snyder said. “Their achievements truly inspire, and we welcome this opportunity to recognize all that they have accomplished in their professions and in the world at large.”
The university grants honorary degrees at spring commencement each year to recognize excellence in human endeavor, including scholarship, public service and the performing arts. Additional details regarding each of the recipients follow:
Norman R. Augustine, Honorary Doctor of Science
Norm Augustine is a retired chairman and chief executive officer of the Lockheed Martin Corp.—the nation’s largest defense contractor—and a former undersecretary of the U.S. Army. A longtime proponent for ensuring the place of science and engineering on the nation’s list of priorities, Augustine served for 16 years as a member of the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology and currently serves on the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Advisory Council. Among his many honors are the National Medal of Technology and the U.S. Department of Defense’s highest civilian award, and as a five-time recipient of the Distinguished Service Medal.
Stanley Bergman, Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters
Stanley Bergman is chairman of the board and CEO of Henry Schein Inc., the world’s largest provider of health care products and services to office-based dental, animal health and medical practitioners. With more than 17,500 Team Schein Members in 29 countries, the company had sales of $10.4 billion in 2014. Henry Schein has been a Fortune “World’s Most Admired” company for 14 consecutive years, ranking No. 1 in its industry in 2015. Bergman is a board member or adviser for numerous educational and health care-related institutions. He is an honorary member of the American Dental Association and Alpha Omega Dental Fraternity.
Adel Mahmoud, Honorary Doctor of Science
Adel Mahmoud is a professor in molecular biology and public policy at Princeton University. Previously, he served as president of Merck Vaccines and a management committee member for Merck Co., and chairman of medicine at the Case Western University School of Medicine and physician-in-chief at University Hospitals of Cleveland. His distinguished work has made him a leading expert on vaccine development and infectious diseases in the developing world, garnering awards and recognitions in tropical medicine research and international health policy.
Barry Meyer, Honorary Doctor of Laws
Barry Meyer (LAW ’67) is the recently retired Warner Bros. chairman and CEO. In his 42 years at the company, he led a $1.2 billion acquisition of Lorimar-Telepictures and helped launch the studio’s own network, The WB. Under his direction, the company consistently ranked as one of the strongest, most profitable and best-positioned studios in the industry—fueled by the creation of award-winning movies and television series such as The Matrix, The Dark Knight, Friends, ER, The West Wing and The Big Bang Theory as well as the eight Harry Potter films—a series that became the most successful motion picture franchise in history.
Members of the campus community may submit honorary degree nominations at any time. For a description of qualifications visit: case.edu/provost/about/honorarydegree/.
Commencement convocation begins at 9:30 a.m. Following the event—at which degrees officially are conferred for all undergraduate and graduate/professional students—each school and college will host a separate diploma ceremony. All students receiving bachelor’s degrees, regardless of major, will be presented with their diplomas at the undergraduate studies diploma ceremony.
A full schedule of ceremonies and information and information on parking, shuttles and accommodations can be found at case.edu/commencement.