Charlie Simon

Staff writer

On March 24, Colorado College administration revealed this year’s commencement speakers. Jane Lubchenco ‘69will headline commencement and will be joined by Kristi Erdal – who was chosen as this year’s Baccalaureate speaker – and valedictorian Wes Brandt.


These three speakers will be joined by Jerri Marr, Ed Robson, and Robert Schock, who will all receive honorary degrees.


After graduating from Colorado College with a degree in biology, Lubchenco began a teaching career spanning over thirty years that included stints at Harvard University and Oregon State University. Lubchenco was appointed head of the NOAA by Barack Obama in December of 2008, a post she served at until 2013. After her time with the NOAA, she returned to Oregon State University where she is currently the Wayne and Gladys Valley Professor of Marine Biology and Distinguished Professor of Zoology at Oregon State University.


Kristi Erdal is a professor of psychology at Colorado College. Her research focuses on depression and anxiety in Parkinson’s disease, along with researching sports superstition and head injury. She has been teaching here at Colorado College since 1995.


These two speakers will be joined by valedictorian Wes Brandt. Brandt has been a fixture during his time here at CC and says of his selection as class speaker, “I found it crazy and a little foolish that people nominated me in the first place, but I put a lot of work into a draft speech and was thrilled that it was chosen. Now I’m just really nervous about delivering the thing.”


Jerri Marr, who is receiving an honorary degree, is the forest supervisor of the Pike and San Isabel National Forests, and the Cimarron and Comanche National Grasslands and was deeply involved in coordinating and leading efforts to fight the 2012 Waldo Canyon Fire.


Ed Robson ‘54 has served on the Colorado College Board of Trustees and has received the Ellis Island Medal of Honor from the National Ethnic Coalition of Organizations. Robson continues to remain deeply involved with Colorado College through the Robson Endowed Scholarship Fund and the Robson Scholars Fund.


Robert Schock ’61 is a member of the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, a group that was collectively awarded the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize.

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