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Keynote Speaker and
Honorary Degree Recipients

Keynote Speaker & Honorary Degree Recipient

Thomas H. Kean

Joe Piscopo

This year's commencement speaker is the Honorable Thomas H. Kean, former Governor of the State of New Jersey, Past President of Drew University and past Chairman of the 9/11 Commission. 

As Governor from 1982 to 1990, Kean was rated among America’s most effective state leaders by Newsweek magazine; noted for tax cuts that spurred 750,000 new jobs; a federally replicated welfare reform program; landmark environmental policies; and more than 30 education reforms.  He delivered the keynote address at the 1988 Republican National Convention.  He was re-elected for a second term by the largest margin in state history.  While Governor, he served on the President’s Education Policy Advisory Committee and as chair of the Education Commission of the States and the National Governor’s Association Task Force on Teaching.  He remains one of the most popular governors in New Jersey’s history. 

Kean served as president of Drew University from 1990 until 2005.  During his presidency, applications to Drew increased by more than 40 percent; the endowment nearly tripled; and more than $50 million was committed to construction of new buildings and renovation of older buildings, principally student residence halls.

In 2002, Kean was named by President George W. Bush to head the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks upon the United States.  The Commission’s work culminated in 2004, with the release of the 9/11 Commission Report, which quickly became a national best-seller.  Its recommendations resulted in the largest intelligence reform in the nation’s history.  Kean served as the chairman of the 9/11 Public Discourse Project, a nonprofit entity created with private funds to continue the Commission’s work of guarding against future attacks.

In 2010, Kean was appointed as Chair to the Higher Education Task Force by Governor Christie, which resulted in the Higher Education Task Force Report.  One of the recommendations of that report was to re-prioritize State resources toward the benefits of New Jersey’s college students.  In 2012, the Building Our Future Bond was passed by New Jersey voters, as a result. The referendum authorized $750 million in State bonds that would provide grants to New Jersey’s higher education institutions for construction and modernization of academic and research facilities.

Kean currently serves as chairman of the board of Carnegie Corporation of New York.  In addition, he has served on a number of corporate boards and is chair of the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy, co-chair of JerseyCan and is co-chairman with Congressman Lee Hamilton of the National Security Preparedness Group.  He serves on the board of the Environmental Defense Fund and the Seeing Eye and is the former chair of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation the nation’s largest health philanthropy.  He is also a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, American Academy of Art and Sciences and the National Committee on U.S.-China Relations.

He holds a B.A. from Princeton University and an M.A. from Columbia University Teachers College and has served as a trustee of both institutions.  Kean is the author of The Politics of Inclusion, published by the Free Press, and is co-author of Without Precedent, published by Alfred A. Knopf, a division of Random House, Inc.

“It is such a pleasure that the Honorable Thomas H. Kean will be serving as keynote speaker in May,” says Dr. Barbara-Jayne Lewthwaite, Centenary College President.  “Our graduating students are very fortunate to have the opportunity to hear him speak about his experience and can benefit from his advice.”

Honorary Degree Recipients

Stanley Caine holds a Bachelor of Arts in History with minors in Philosophy and Political Science from Macalester College, St Paul, Minnesota, as well as a Master of Arts in History and a Ph.D. in History from the University of Wisconsin, Madison Wisconsin.

Dr. Caine’s professional career includes positions such as Assistant Professor of History at Lindenwood College, Associate Professor of History at DePauw University, and Vice President for Academic Affairs and Professor of History at Hanover College.  He served as President (interim) at North Carolina Wesleyan College in Rocky Mount, NC; and President of Adrian College, Adrian, MI, where he was named President Emeritus.  He now serves on the Board of Trustees of Centenary College, Hackettstown, NJ; and on the Board of Trustees of Wilmington College, Wilmington, OH.

Dr. Caine is the recipient of multiple awards and honors:

  • Macalester College: Funk Prize for top history student, President of Senior Class, graduated magna cum laude with departmental honors in history
  • Woodrow Wilson Fellow, 1962-64; National Presbyterian Fellow, 1963-65
  • D. C. Everest Prize in Wisconsin Economic History for The Myth of A Progressive Reform, 1968
  • Elected Outstanding Faculty Member, Lindenwood College, 1970
  • Selected for Outstanding Educators in America, 1970
  • Baccalaureate Speaker, Lindenwood College, 1972
  • Selected for Outstanding Young Men in America, 1975
  • Elected to Jacksonville (Illinois) High School Athletic Hall of Fame, 1992
  • Commission Tribute Award from the Michigan Commission on Spanish Speaking Affairs for “Outstanding Contributions to the Hispanic Community of Michigan,” 1992
  • Recipient of Doctor of Laws (honorary degree), Hanover College, 2000
  • Commencement Speaker and recipient of Doctor of Letters (honorary degree), MacMurray College, Jacksonville, Illinois, 2003
  • Recipient of Doctor of Humane Letters (honorary degree), Adrian College, 2005
  • Recipient of Lifetime Achievement Award, Michigan Campus Compact, 2005
  • Adrian College Board of Trustees named the newly completed student center the “Caine Student Center.” 2005
  • Included in Who’s Who in America, Who’s Who in the Midwest, and Who’s Who in American Education

Dr. Cain is the author of several published works, including: 

  • The Myth of a Progressive Reform, The State Historical Society of Wisconsin Press, 1970
  • “Why Railroads Supported Regulation: The Case of Wisconsin, 1902-1910,” Business History Review, Summer, 1970
  • Co-editor, with Roger Wyman, of Political Reform In Wisconsin, by Emmanuel Philipp, The State Historical Society of Wisconsin, 1973
  • “The Origins of Progressivism,” in Lewis Gould, editor, The Progressive Era, Syracuse University Press, 1974
  • Numerous book reviews in The Journal of American History, The Historian, The Economic History Review, The Indiana Magazine of History and The Wisconsin Magazine of History

Dr. Caine maintains many professional memberships and participates in organizational activities:

  • Member, Organization of American Historians
  • Member, National Humanities Faculty.  Consultant in local history and American Studies at Valley Park High School (Missouri), 1979; Adviser for effort to develop interdisciplinary humanities core for 10th graders at two Baton Rouge (Louisiana) high schools, 1980-1982
  • Academic Deans Task Force, Council for Independent Colleges, 1981-1982. Board of Directors, Council for Independent Colleges, 1994-96
  • Delegate, National Forum on Excellence in Education, sponsored by U.S. Department of Education, 1983
  • Regional co-chair, Indiana Congress on Education, 1986-89
  • Consultant-Evaluator, The Higher Learning Commission, North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, 1984-2006
  • Board of Directors, National Association of Schools, Colleges and Universities of the United Methodist Church, (NASCUMC) 1994-1997.  President, NASCUMC, 2002-2003
  • Chair, Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association, 1991-92, 1998-1999
  • Member, National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Council, 1995-97.  Vice Chair, Management Council, NCAA, Division III, 1997-1999.  President’s Council, NCAA, Division III, 199-2002
  • Chair, Association of Independent Colleges and Universities of Michigan (AICUM), 1995-96
  • Board of Director, National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities (NAICU), 1997-2000
  • Vice Chair, Michigan Campus Compact, 2001-2005
  • Chair, Educational Policies Committee, Michigan Colleges Foundation, 1994-96; 2001-2005

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