Commencement Speakers

For more information on past speakers, visit the Commencement Archives.

Year Speaker

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999

1998

1997

1996

1995

1994


1993

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1918

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1911

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1879

Melissa Harris-Perry, Professor

Jane Condon '73, Comedian

Lynn Sherr '63, ABC News Journalist

Kimberly Dozier '87, CBS News Correspondent

Cathie Black, President, Hearst Magazines

Madeleine Korbel Albright ’59, former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations

Ophelia Dahl '94, Executive Director of Partners in Health

Patricia J. Williams '73, Professor at Columbia School of Law

Toni Morrison, award-winning author

Linda Wertheimer '65, National Public Radio Senior Correspondent

Whoopi Goldberg, actress, comedian and humanitarian

Jehan Sadat, human rights activist

Pamela Daniels '59, class of 2000 dean

Lynn Sherr '63, journalist and author, correspondent for ABC News

Pamela Melroy '83, astronaut, International Space Station 2000

Oprah Winfrey, talk show host, actress, producer, philanthropist and business leader

Nora Ephron ’62, writer, film director and producer

Madeleine Korbel Albright ’59, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations

Cokie Boggs Roberts ’64, ABC News Congressional Correspondent and NPR Senior News Analyst

Gloria Steinem, feminist

Hillary Rodham Clinton ’69, attorney

Madeleine L’Engle, author

Barbara Bush, First Lady, United States of America

Susan Estrich ’74, law professor and manager of Dukakis Presidential campaign

Gloria Steinem, feminist

Elizabeth Hanford Dole, U.S. Secretary of Transportation

Diane Sawyer ’67, journalist

Geraldine Ferraro, former Congresswoman and 1984 Vice Presidential candidate

Carol Gilligan, educator, psychologist and author

Susan Sontag, essayist, film director and novelist

Maya Angelou, poet, author and actress

Ellen Goodman, columnist

Garry Trudeau, creator of Doonsbury cartoon strip

Nora Ephron ’62, author and journalist

Jill Wine-Volner, General Counsel to the Army (formerly Assistant Watergate Special Prosecutor)

Elizabeth Brenner Drew ’57, writer and television commentator

Rosemary Murray, Vice Chancellor of Cambridge University, Cambridge, England

Patricia Carbine, Editor-in-Chief and Publisher, Ms Magazine

John Kenneth Galbraith, Professor of Economics, Harvard University

Shirley Chisholm, Congresswoman from New York

Eleanor Holmes Norton, Chairwoman, New York City Commission on Human Rights

Kate Millett, feminist

George Wald, Professor of Biology, Harvard University

Edward W. Brooke, U.S. Senator from Massachusetts

Howard W. Johnson, President of MIT

Sol M. Linowitz, U.S. Representative to the Organization of American States

Eugene R. Black, Former Pres. of the World Bank, Special Advisor to Pres. Lyndon B. Johnson

Elisabeth Luce Moore ’24, Trustee of Wellesley College

McGeorge Bundy, Special Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs

Erwin Dain Canham, Editor of The Christian Science Monitor

Santha Rama Rau ’44, author

Vera Micheles Dean, Editor, Foreign Policy Association -- World Affairs Center

Fred M. Hechinger, Education Editor of The New York Times

Neil H. McElroy, U.S. Secretary of Defense

James Reston, Chief Washington Correspondent of The New York Times

Edward Weeks, Editor of The Atlantic Monthly

McGeorge Bundy, Prof. of Govt and Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, Harvard Univ.

Charles E. Wyzanski, Jr., Judge of U.S. District Court, Massachusetts

John H. Finley, Jr., Professor of Greek Literature, Harvard University

Mildred McAfee Horton, President of Wellesley College, 1936-49

Erwin Dain Canham, Editor of The Christian Science Monitor

Archibald MacLeish, poet and Professor of Rhetoric and Oratory, Harvard University

John Knox Jessup, Chairman, Board of Editors of Fortune

Mildred McAfee Horton, President of Wellesley College, 1936-49

Edward A. Weeks, Jr., Editor of The Atlantic Monthly

James Forrestal, U.S. Secretary of the Navy

Harold E. Stassen, ex-Governor of Minnesota

Leverett Saltonstall, U.S. Senator from Massachusetts

Vice-Admiral Randall Jacobs, U.S. Navy, Chief of Naval Personnel

Harvey Hollister Bundy, Special Assistant to the U.S. Secretary of War

Hu Shih, Ambassador from China to the U.S.

Archibald MacLeish, poet and Librarian of Congress

Karl Taylor Compton, President of MIT

Stephen Duggan, Director of the Institute of International Education, New York

Ernest Hatch Wilkins, President of Oberlin College

Josephine Roche, U.S. Assistant Secretary of the Treasury

Charles Seymour, Provost of Yale University

Frances Perkins, U.S. Secretary of Labor

George E. Vincent, Dean Emeritus of Yale Divinity School

James G. McDonald, Chairman of the Board of the Foreign Policy Association

M. Roy Ridley, Fellow and Chaplain of Balliol College, Oxford

Willard Learoyd Sperry, Dean of the Harvard Divinity School

Raymond Blaine Fosdick, lawyer

Roscoe Pound, Dean of Harvard Law School

Sir Robert Falconer, President of University of Toronto

Michael Pupin, Professor of Electro-Mechanics, Columbia University

Chauncey Brewster Tinker, Professor of English Literature, Yale University

Robert Morss Lovett, Editor of The New Republic

Rev. Samuel McChord Crothers

Judge Florence Ellinwood Allen, Supreme Court of Ohio

Raymond B. Fosdick, lawyer

Gutzon Borglum, sculptor and orator

Charles Evans Hughes, ex-Governor of New York

Albert Parker Fitch, Professor of the History of Religion, Amherst College

Rev. Raymond Calkins

William Ernest Hocking, Professor of Philosophy, Harvard University

George Edgar Vincent, President of the University of Minnesota

William Howard Taft, former U.S. President; Professor of Law, Yale University

John Finley, New York State Commissioner of Education

Bliss Perry, Professor of English Literature, Harvard University

Talcott Williams, President of Columbia School of Journalism

John Farwell Moors, Boston broker

Curtis Guild, Jr., former Governor of Massachusetts

Jonathan Prentiss Dolliver, Senator from Iowa

Rev. Samuel McChord Crothers

William Roscoe Thayer, author

James Hulme Canfield, Librarian of Columbia University

William De Witt Hyde, Professor of Bowdoin College

George Herbert Palmer, Professor of Philosophy, Harvard University

Richard Watson Gilder, Editor of The Century

LeBaron Russell Briggs, Dean of Harvard College

Caroline Hazard, President of Wellesley College, 1899-1910

Theodore Salisbury Woolsey, Professor of International Law, Yale University

Hamilton Wright Mabie, Associate Editor of The Outlook

Benjamin Ide Wheeler, Professor of Greek, Cornell University

Calvin Thomas, Professor of Germanic Languages and Literature, Columbia University

Albert Bushnell Hart, Professor of History, Harvard University

Woodrow Wilson, Professor of Jurisprudence and Politics, Princeton University

Rev. James Gardiner Vose

G. Stanley Hall, President of Clark University

Rev. Philip Stafford Moxom

Rev. Heman Lincoln Wayland

Alice Freeman Palmer, President of Wellesley College, 1881-87

Jacob Gould Schurman, Professor of Philosophy, Cornell University

W. C. P. Breckenridge, Congressman from Kentucky

James O. Murray, Professor of English Language and Literature, Princeton University

Rev. Marvin R. Vincent

Daniel C. Gilman, President of Johns Hopkins University

Rev. Charles Dana Barrows

George S. Morris, Johns Hopkins University and University of Michigan

Rev. N. Howard Crosby

[no Commencement exercises]

John D. Long, Governor of Massachusetts

Rev. R. S. Storrs