Hiram College today announced that U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown, (D-Ohio) and his wife, Pulitzer Prize winning columnist, Connie Schultz, will both be the speakers for Hiram’s commencement exercises May 12, 2012.
“We wanted to do something unusual, and something that had resonance for our graduates whether they are from Ohio or beyond,” said Thomas V. Chema, President of Hiram. “We want this to be a sort of non-political, non-partisan “tag team” event that emphasizes the ideals of public service and social justice we hold dear at Hiram.”
Chema said he had asked the husband and wife to avoid partisan politics in their presentation, and that they agreed to focus instead on the essence of college graduation, service to community, and the graduates’ entry into the world.
Brown, is seeking his second term in the Senate, after serving seven terms in the House of Representatives from Ohio’s 13th District (1992-2006), as Ohio’s Secretary of State (1983–1991) and in the Ohio General Assembly (1974-1982).
He has forged a reputation in Washington as a tenacious defender of the middle class, and a strong voice for workers, families, fair trade, and civil rights.
Schultz, a native of Ashtabula Ohio, and a columnist for the Cleveland Plain Dealer for 18 years, won the Pulitzer Prize for her columns on social justice in 2005, and was a Pulitzer finalist in 2003, for feature writing. Her body of work has focused on the underprivileged and issues of social justice.
She resigned from the Plain Dealer in September, 2011 to avoid a conflict of interest in her husband’s reelection campaign, but remains a nationally syndicated columnist with a regular feature in Parade Magazine, and is a frequent essayist and commentator for numerous publications and websites.
The 163rd Hiram Commencement will be held on the campus at 2:30, May 12, 2012. For more information visit www.hiram.edu/commencement