2018 Commencement Speakers

Written by Stephen V. Sundborg, S.J.
February 23, 2018

Dear Students, Faculty and Staff,

I am pleased to announce the speakers for our undergraduate and graduate commencement ceremonies, which will take place June 17.

Sally Jewell, our undergraduate speaker, is a leader in environmental sustainability. Following a distinguished career in the private sector, including 13 years as CEO of Recreational Equipment Incorporated (REI), she was confirmed as United States Secretary of the Interior in 2013. As secretary, Sally worked tirelessly on a number of conservation and environmental protection initiatives, expanding access to parks and ensuring access to public lands for future generations. She has received numerous awards, including the National Audubon Society’s Rachel Carson Award, the Woodrow Wilson Center’s Award for Public Service and the University of Washington’s 2016 Alumni Lifetime Achievement Award.

Graduate speaker Sam Green was appointed the first Poet Laureate of Washington in 2007 by then-Governor Christine Gregoire. He has authored 11 poetry collections and has been published in hundreds of journals. In 2008 Sam received the Washington State Book Award for Poetry for his poetry collection, The Grace of Necessity, and the following year was awarded a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship in Poetry. Sam has been generous in sharing his expertise and insights with aspiring writers at numerous schools, colleges and universities, including serving several terms as the Distinguished Visiting Northwest Writer at Seattle University.

In their own unique ways, Sally Jewell and Sam Green exemplify the values of our institution. We look forward to conferring honorary doctorates upon these accomplished individuals and having them share their thoughts with us at this year’s commencement ceremonies.


Stephen V. Sundborg, S.J.