TaxProf Blog

Editor: Paul L. Caron, Dean
Pepperdine University School of Law

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

2011 Law School Commencement Speakers

  • Albany:  Stephen Younger (President, New York State Bar Association)
  • American:  Stephen Zack (President, ABA)
  • Arkansas-Little Rock:  Minnijean Brown Trickey (One of the Little Rock Nine)
  • Baylor:  Ken Starr (President, Baylor University)
  • Boston College:  Roderick Ireland (Chief Justice, Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court) 
  • Boston University:  Denny Chin (Judge, U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2d Circuit)
  • Brooklyn:  Thomas Buergenthal (Judge, International Court of Justice)
  • BYU:  Susan Prager (Executive Director, AALS)
  • California-Western:  Former leaders of the Judge Advocate Corps: Army (Lt. Gen. Scott Black), Navy (Vice Adm. Bruce MacDonald) and Marines (Brig. Gen. Kevin Sandkuhler)
  • Cardozo:  Eric Schneiderman (Attorney General, New York)
  • Charleston:  Lindsey Graham (Member, U.S. Senate)
  • Chicago:  Debra Cafaro (Chairwoman & CEO, Ventas Inc.)
  • Cincinnati:  Barbara Howard (Partner, Barbara J. Howard Co., L.P.A.)
  • Cleveland State:  Sherrod Brown (Member, U.S. Senate)
  • Columbia:  George Madison (General Counsel, U.S. Department of the Treasury)
  • Cornell:  Stewart Schwab (Dean, Cornell Law School)
  • Colorado:  Monica Márquez (Justice, Colorado Supreme Court)
  • CUNY:  Julian Bond (civil rights leader)
  • Denver:  Diana DeGette (Member, U.S. Congress)
  • Duquesne:  Tom Corbett (Governor, Pennsylvania)
  • Drexel:  Betty Anne Waters (waitress turned attorney, featured in the movie, Conviction)
  • Florida International:  Charles Canaday (Chief Justice, Florida Supreme Court)
  • Fordham:  Brian Williams (Anchor, NBC Nightly News)
  • George Washington:  John Snow (Former Secretary, U.S. Treasury Department)
  • Georgetown:  Brendan Sullivan (Partner, Williams & Connolly).
  • Georgia:  Kasim Reed (Mayor, Atlanta)
  • Georgia State:  Johnny Isakson (Member, U.S. Senate) 
  • Golden Gate:  Jeffrey Toobin (Legal Analyst, CNN)
  • Gonzaga:  Steven Gonzalez (Judge, King County Superior Court, Washington)
  • Harvard:  Alec Baldwin (Actor)
  • Hofstra:  Eric Schneiderman (Attorney General, New York)
  • Houston:  Brad Smith (General Counsel, Microsoft)
  • Indiana-Indianapolis:  Vernon Jordan (Senior Counsel, Akin Gump)
  • Louisville:  Greg Fischer (Mayor, Louisville)
  • LSU:  Joel Klein (Former Chancellor, New York City Department of Education)
  • Maryland:  Brooksley Born (Former Chair, Commodities Futures Trading Commission)
  • Michigan:  Rob Portman (Member, U.S. Senate)
  • Michigan State:  Wallace B. Jefferson (Chief Justice, Texas Supreme Court)
  • Minnesota:  Walter Mondale (Former Vice President, United States)
  • Missouri-Kansas City:  Jay Nixon (Governor, Missouri)
  • Nebraska:  Clarence Thomas (Justice, U.S. Suupreme Court)
  • New HampshireDonna Edwards (Member, U.S. Congress)
  • New Mexico:  Elena Kagan (Justice, U.S. Supreme Court)
  • New York Law School:  Cory Booker (Mayor, Newark, New Jersey)
  • North Carolina:  Teresa Wynn Roseborough (Deputy General Counsel, MetLife)
  • North Dakota:  John Hoeven (Member, U.S. Senate)
  • Northwestern:  John Paul Stevens (Former Justice, U.S. Supreme Court)
  • Oklahoma:  Glen Johnson (Chancellor, Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education)
  • Oregon:  Martha Walters (Justice, Oregon Supreme Court).
  • Pace:  Jonathan Lippman (Chief Judge, New York)
  • Pennsylvania:  Ed Rendell (Fromer Governor, Pennsylvania)
  • Pepperdine:  Robert George (Professor, Princeton University)
  • Roger Williams:  Paul Suttell (Chief Justice, Rhode Island Supreme Court)
  • Rutgers-Camden:  Scott Turow (Novelist)
  • Rutgers-Newark:  Elizabeth Warren (Special Advisor to the President of the United States)
  • San Diego:  Ron Parraguirre (Chief Justice, Nevada Supreme Court)
  • Santa Clara:  Carlos Moreno (FZormer Justice, California Supreme Court)
  • Seton Hall:  Paul Fishman (U.S. Attorney, New Jersey)
  • South Carolina:  Lindsey Graham (Member, U.S. Senate)
  • South Texas:  Annise Parker (Mayor, Houston)
  • St. John's:  Guido Calabresi (Judge, U.S. Court of Appeals, 2d Circuit)
  • St, Thomas U.:  Miguel Diaz (U.S. Ambassador to the Holy See)
  • SUNY-Buffalo:  Kirsten Gillibrand (Member, U.S. Senate)
  • Syracuse: Joseph Biden III (Attorney General, Delaware)
  • Temple:  Arlen Specter (Former Member, U.S. Senate)
  • Texas:   Jack Balagia Jr. (Vice President and General Counsel, Exxon Mobil)
  • UCLA:  Valerie Jarrett (Senior Advisor to President Obama)
  • UC-Davis:  Tani Cantil-Sakauye (Chief Justice, California.
  • UC-Hastings:  Vaughn Walker (Former U.S. District Judge)
  • Vermont:  Amy Goodman (Host, Democracy Now!)
  • Villanova:  Kelly Ayotte (Member, U.S. Senate)
  • Virginia:  Eric Holder (Attorney General, United States)
  • Wake Forest:  William Suter (Clerk, U.S. Supreme Court)
  • Washington & Lee:  Nina Totenberg (Legal Correspondent, NPR)
  • Western State:  William Robinson (President-elect, ABA)
  • William & Mary:  Mark Warner (Member, U.S. Senate)
  • Wisconsin:  Peter Neufeld (Co-founder, Innocence Project)

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I see that Harvard Law has snagged Baldwin. I heard Baldwin speak at the NYU commencement at Yankee Stadium last year (university wide, not just law school). Baldwin told the audience he was a law school drop-out who switched to drama at NYU. When some dunderheads in the NYU law school section of Yankee Stadium cheered wildly at that, Baldwin retorted, "And it was the best decision I ever made!" Harvard Law grads are in for an entertaining speech.

Posted by: Harry Lewis | May 10, 2011 7:29:31 AM

Curious re: the proportion of Lefties vs. Righties. And if it changes with the pedigree of the current Executive Branch, or if it is perennially Lefty.

Alec Baldwin = Harvard? I can't think of any individual that would more cynically beclown the reputation of the "best and brightest." More evidence they are arrogant, elitist, and wholly out of touch...not that any was needed.

Posted by: A. Reasoner | May 10, 2011 7:38:56 AM

If anyone has any spare tix to the SUNY graduation, Harry Reid is on the prowl.

Posted by: JB | May 10, 2011 8:30:44 AM

How would you like to hear Nina Totenberg give a commencement address in that annoying, boring, and "mentholated" NPR speaking cadence? She should double-team with Alec Baldwin to do the "Schweddy Balls" sketch.

Posted by: Woody | May 10, 2011 2:31:56 PM

No name yet for Georgeotown because they got rejected by the person they approached.

Posted by: John | May 10, 2011 2:45:51 PM

Wow Cornell gets its own dean to speak? Shoot, at my law school, the dean taught a class. What a lame speaker.

Posted by: Jenna | May 10, 2011 3:17:12 PM

Just in - University of Washington School of Law: The Hon. Ricardo S. Martinez, U.S. District Court, Western District of Washington

Posted by: Anonymous | May 19, 2011 2:05:50 AM

As a 2011 Fordham Law grad, I must point out an error in your listing: Former Governor George Pataki will be delivering our commencement address. Brian Williams, currently listed as Fordham's speaker above, will be delivering the undergrad commencement address. Incidentally, we originally got Mikhail Gorbachev, but he cancelled.

Posted by: Alex | May 20, 2011 3:50:09 AM