Dr. Jane Pisano, Senior Vice President for External Relations at the University of Southern California, will give the keynote address and receive an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree, during Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion's graduation ceremonies. The commencement exercises of the one hundred and twenty fourth academic year of HUC-JIR will be held on Monday, May 17, 1999, at 3:00pm at the Los Angeles School located at 32nd and Hoover Streets.
In conjunction with the thirtieth anniversary of the relationship between the College-Institute and USC, Dr. Pisano will deliver the commencement address entitled, "A Call to Community."
"The College-Institute is pleased to acknowledge Dr. Pisano's distinguished career by awarding her an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree. Her commencement address will be an inspiration to our students, faculty, and the community as well," said Rabbi Zimmerman.
At the College-Institute's graduation ceremony, honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degrees will also be bestowed upon Dr. Edna Amir Coffin, Professor of Hebrew Language and Literature, Department of Near Eastern Studies, University of Michigan in Ann Arbor; and Dr. John K. Roth, Russell K. Pitzer Professor of Philosophy, Claremont McKenna College in Claremont.
The College-Institute will also confer honorary Doctor of Divinity degrees upon the following rabbis for their 25 years of dedicated service: Rabbi Malcolm Irving Cohen, Jewish Chaplain, Salinas Valley State Prison in Soledad and San Francisco City and County Jails and Founding Rabbi of Temple B'nai Tikvah in San Francisco; Rabbi Gary Alan Glickstein of Temple Beth Sholom in Miami Beach, Florida; Rabbi Steven Leonard Jacobs of Temple B'nai Sholom in Huntsville, Alabama; Rabbi Robert Leon Kravitz Area Director, American Jewish Committee in Phoenix, Arizona; Rabbi Alan Roger Lachtman of Temple Beth David in Temple City, California; Rabbi Martin Scott Lawson of Temple Emanu-El in San Diego; Rabbi Mark Stephen Miller of Temple Bat Yahm in Newport Beach; Rabbi James Louis Mirel of Temple B'nai Torah in Bellevue, Washington; Rabbi Robert Steven Sharff of Congregation Jewish Community in North Spring, Texas; and Rabbi David Eli Vorspan of The Ami Havurah in Woodland Hills.
Cantor Samuel W. Brown, Cantor Emeritus of Temple Beth Hillel in Valley Village, California will receive an honorary Doctor of Music degree. This is the first time that this degree will be awarded at the Los Angeles School.
Rabbi Sheldon Zimmerman, the President of the four-campus Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, and Dr. Lewis M. Barth, Dean of the Los Angeles School, will confer 11 Master of Arts in Hebrew Letters degrees; 13 Master of Arts in Jewish Communal Service degrees; 2 Joint Masters of Arts in Jewish Communal Service and Jewish Education degrees; 4 Master of Arts in Jewish Education degrees; 1 Master of Arts in Judaic Studies degree; and 1 Doctor of Hebrew Studies degree.
Howard Bernstein, Chair of the College-Institute's Los Angeles Board of Overseers, and Alan Belinkoff, Vice Chair, Union of American Hebrew Congregations will confirm the degrees. Scott Michael Minkow, a member of the HUC-JIR Class of 1999, will speak on behalf of the students, a tradition unique to the Los Angeles School of HUC-JIR.
Founded in 1875, Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion is North America's first institution of higher Jewish education and the academic, spiritual, and professional leadership development center of Reform Judaism. HUC-JIR educates men and women for service to North American and world Jewry as rabbis, cantors, educators, and nonprofit management professionals, and offers graduate programs to scholars and clergy of all faiths. With centers of learning in Cincinnati, Jerusalem, Los Angeles, and New York, HUC-JIR's scholarly resources comprise the renowned Klau Library, the American Jewish Archives, research institutes and centers, and academic publications. In partnership with the Union for Reform Judaism and the Central Conference of American Rabbis, HUC-JIR sustains the Reform Movement's congregations and professional and lay leaders. HUC-JIR's campuses invite the community to cultural and educational programs illuminating Jewish heritage and fostering interfaith and multiethnic understanding. www.huc.edu