May 16, 2008

Case Western Reserve's 2008 commencement ceremonies to feature live-blogging from Craig Newmark

Craig Newmark

When Case Western Reserve University alumnus Craig Newmark delivers the keynote address during the 2008 commencement ceremonies on May 18, he will literally be connected with graduates, their families and a global audience. That's because Newmark plans to blog during his speech.

Newmark will take advantage of Case Western Reserve's Wi-Fi network to live-blog onstage—as time allows—before and during commencement.

The ceremony will take place at the university's Veale Convocation Center. Those who are unable to attend the convocation—which begins at 9:30 a.m.—can follow Newmark's comments leading up to the event on his blog, and his reactions during commencement at Twitter. Since he will be speaking, Newmark is unable to predict how much he'll actually be able to write during the event, but whatever he can manage should offer an interesting glimpse into his experience. The ceremony also will be Webcast live.

Undergraduates, graduates and professional school students will have their degrees conferred at the Commencement Convocation. Following the convocation, diplomas will be presented during separate ceremonies at each student's respective school. Some of the speakers for these ceremonies are Andrew Ruben, Wal-Mart’s first vice president of sustainability, who will speak at the Weatherhead School of Management's ceremony; Sarah Short Austin, MSSA '62, a nationally recognized leader in the areas of public policy and management who will keynote the Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences ceremony; and Stephen C. Ellis, LAW '72, a partner in the Cleveland office of Tucker Ellis & West LLP, who will address School of Law graduates, among others. For additional information about diploma ceremonies by school, go to the online schedule.

Newmark, founder of and a customer service representative for, has always been on the cutting edge of technology. The origins of craigslist date back to his days of working as a freelance software developer in San Francisco. What began as an e-mail list to inform friends about events has developed into an Internet classified service which today serves more than 30 million visitors from 450 cities and 50 countries per month. A double alumnus, he received his bachelor's and master's degrees from Case Western Reserve.

In addition to the keynote address and the awarding of degrees, four distinguished individuals will receive honorary doctorate degrees in the areas of law, science and humanities. They are:

  • Newmark, who will receive an honorary Doctor of Science;
  • David M. Crane, honorary Doctor of Law: Crane is a professor of international law at Syracuse University who previously served as Undersecretary General of the United Nations, and was a founding chief prosecutor of the Special Court for Sierra Leone;
  • Margaret J. Giannini, honorary Doctor of Science: Giannini is the director of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office on Disability, and has devoted her work and service to bettering the lives of millions of Americans who have disabilities; and
  • Raymond K. Shepardson, honorary Doctor of Humane Letters: Shepardson, a community arts activist, has worked to preserve some of Cleveland's historic theaters as spaces for the performing arts and cultural centers in the city.

For more information contact Kimyette Finley, 216.368.0521.

Posted by: Heidi Cool, May 16, 2008 12:42 PM | News Topics: Campus Life, Events, HeadlinesMain, Lectures/Speakers, Provost Initiatives, news

Case Western Reserve University is committed to the free exchange of ideas, reasoned debate and intellectual dialogue. Speakers and scholars with a diversity of opinions and perspectives are invited to the campus to provide the community with important points of view, some of which may be deemed controversial. The views and opinions of those invited to speak on the campus do not necessarily reflect the views of the university administration or any other segment of the university community.