Monday, August 15, 2011

Convocation to Honor MacArthur Foundation President, Former Head of Maryland Schools

CHESTERTOWN, MD—Washington College will honor the head of one of the nation’s most influential philanthropic foundations and Maryland’s recently retired superintendent of schools during Fall Convocation ceremonies Thursday, September 1, at 4 p.m. Gathering in Decker Theatre, in the Gibson Center for the Arts, the College community will confer honorary degrees on Robert Gallucci, president of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, and Nancy Grasmick, who led Maryland’s schools for two decades before stepping down June 30.

The Convocation audience also will honor alumna Rebecca Corbin Loree ’00 with the Alumni Horizon Ribbon, which recognizes graduates from the past 15 years who have demonstrated outstanding leadership, service or scholarship in their lives and/or professions. In addition, five students will be recognized for outstanding academic achievement during the previous school year.

Robert Gallucci, a leading expert in U.S. foreign policy and a key player in international efforts to stop weapons of mass destruction, became president of the MacArthur Foundation in July of 2009. He brought extensive experience in peacekeeping and negotiations to the Foundation, which supports initiatives in peace and security, human rights, international justice, conservation, sustainable development, education and international health.

Gallucci was Assistant Secretary of State for political and military affairs in 1992-93 and served as the nation’s chief negotiator during a nuclear crisis with North Korea in 1994. As special adviser for the implementation of the Dayton Accords, he helped negotiate the peace agreement that brought the war in Bosnia to a close. After the first Gulf War, he was part of the arms inspection effort known as the UN Special Commission on Iraq. A year later, he helped implement nonproliferation and nuclear safety initiatives in the former Soviet Union.

A native of Brooklyn, NY, Gallucci received his bachelor's degree at the State University of New York at Stony Brook and his master's and doctorate at Brandeis University. After completing his post-graduate studies, he taught briefly at Swarthmore College, at Johns Hopkins University’s Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies, and at Georgetown University, where he returned in 1996 as Dean of the Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service.

He is the author of Neither Peace Nor Honor: The Politics of American Military Policy in Vietnam, and co-author of Going Critical: The First North Korean Nuclear Crisis. The College will award Gallucci the honorary degree Doctor of Letters.

Nancy S. Grasmick served as Maryland State Superintendent of Schools for 20 years, earning a reputation as a tireless advocate for education with a strong focus on student achievement, teacher quality, parent involvement, school funding, and early childhood education. Under her leadership, Maryland received one of the federal government’s coveted Race to the Top education grants.

Dr. Grasmick began her career in education as a teacher of deaf children in Baltimore City. She subsequently served as a classroom and resource teacher, principal, supervisor, assistant superintendent, and associate superintendent in the Baltimore County Public Schools. In 1989, Governor William Donald Schaefer appointed her Special Secretary for Children, Youth, and Families and, in 1991, the Maryland State Board of Education appointed her State Superintendent of Schools.

Dr. Grasmick received her bachelor’s degree from Towson University, her master’s degree from Gallaudet University, and her doctorate from Johns Hopkins University. Her many board and commission appointments include the Maryland Business Roundtable for Education and the National Academy of Sciences committee responsible for Rising Above the Gathering Storm, the landmark report on U.S. economic competitiveness. In 2008, she received the Civitas International Leader Award from the Center for Civic Education in recognition of her long-time commitment to expanding civic education in the United States and throughout the world. The College will award Grasmick the honorary degree Doctor of Public Service.

Honored alumna Rebecca Corbin Loree is the managing director of Corbin Perception Group, LLC, which she created in 2007 as a boutique advisory firm focusing on investor relations and strategic communications. She graduated cum laude and with Honors from Washington College with a B.A. in Business Administration in 2000. She also was the first recipient of the Schottland Business Leadership Award, which recognizes a senior who has demonstrated outstanding academic ability and potential for leadership in the business community. She began her career in New York City with Thomson Financial in the Corporate Advisory Services division, where she established and ran Thomson Financial Perception.

Following the Convocation program, the College will offer a reception in the Underwood Lobby of the Arts Center.

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