Thursday, May 05, 2011

Ball State Spring Commencement Speakers and Programs

Have you ever wondered what noted figures have spoken at Ball State's spring commencement over the years?  Are you reminiscing about commencement ceremonies from years past?  Ball State University Archives & Special Collections has complied this list of spring commencement speakers dating back to 1926.

Click on the date of the commencement ceremony to access the digitized graduation program available online in our Digital Media Repository.  Click on the name of the speaker for biographical information.  Visit the Ball State University Commencement Program collection to view our entire digital collection of commencement programs.

June 18, 1926 - George R. Grose
June 10, 1927 - Shailer Mathews
June 15, 1928 - Elmer Burritt Bryan
June 14, 1929 - Willis A. Sutton
June 6, 1930 - Charles Whitney Gilkey 
June 5, 1931 - Homer P. Rainey 
June 15, 1932 - Alexander Meiklejohn
June 14, 1933 - James Shera Montgomery* 
June 13, 1934 - Paul V. McNutt
June 12, 1935- Francis J. McConnell
June 10, 1936 - Rollo W. Brown
June 9, 1937 - Fred G. Bale*
June 18, 1938 - Thomas Vernor Smith
June 7, 1939 - Herbert Agar
June 7, 1940 - Albert Buckner Coe*
June 6, 1941 - Charles Whitney Gilkey
June 5, 1942 - Boyd H. Bode
May 30, 1943 - L.A. Pittenger
May 28, 1944 - Clyde Everett Wildman
June 8, 1945 - John Temple Graves II
June 4, 1946 - Thomas Vernor Smith
June 3, 1947 - Harold Benjamin
June 1, 1948 - James P. Adams
June 6, 1949 - Howard Pierce Davis*
June 6, 1950 - Ordway Tead
June 5, 1951 - Herold C. Hunt
June 3, 1952 - Thomas Vernor Smith
June 2, 1953 - Raymond Walters
June 8, 1954 - Chester M. Alter
June 7, 1955 - David Dodds Henry
June 5, 1956 - Andrew W. Cordier
June 4, 1957 - Harlan Hatcher
June 8, 1958 - Frederic W. Heimberger*
June 7, 1959 - Virgil M. Hancher
June 5, 1960 - William P. Tolley
June 4, 1961 - A. Blair Helman
June 10, 1962 - Robert D. Swanson


June 9, 1963 - Herman B Wells
June 7, 1964 - William S. Carlson
June 6, 1965 - Frederick Lawson Hovde
June 5, 1966 - O. Meredith Wilson
May 28, 1967 - Stanley S. Kresge
May 26, 1968 - Henry H. Hill
June 4, 1969 - Agnes de Mille
June 4, 1970 - John A. Scott*
June 3, 1971 - Elizabeth Duncan Koontz
May 24, 1972 - John J. Pruis
May 25, 1973 - John Brademas
May 17, 1974 - Roger W. Heyns
May 24, 1975 - Sister Jeanne Knoerle
1976 - 1980 - No Commencement Address
May 23, 1981 - Robert P. Bell
May 22, 1982 - James L. Fisher*
1983-1985 - No Commencement Address
May 24, 1986 - Richard G. Lugar
May 23, 1987 - Charles Everett Koop
May 21, 1988 - James M. Buchanan
May 6, 1989 - Charles H. Shaw, Dane Miller, Robert D. Orr
May 5, 1990 - Birch E. Bayh
May 4, 1991 - Carl Allan de Graaf*, Richard C. Notebaert
1992 - 1993 - No Commencement Address
May 7, 1994 - Richard L. Moake
May 6, 1995 - Thomas Huge*
May 4, 1996 - Twyla Tharp, Nicholas Negroponte
1997-2001 - No Commencement Address
May 4, 2002 - David W. Orr
2003-2004 - No Commencement Address
May 7, 2005 - David R. Gergen
May 6, 2006 - David S. Broder
May 5, 2007 - Andrew H. Card Jr.
May 3, 2008 - Diane Auer Jones
May 9, 2009 - Richard G. Lugar
May 8, 2010 - Angela Ahrendts



1933 - James Shera Montgomery, Chaplain to the US House of Representatives from 1921-1950
1937 - Fred G. Bale, Judge, Westerville, Ohio
1940 - Albert Buckner Coe, Minister, First Congregational Church, Oak Park, Illinois
1949 - Howard Pierce Davis, Minister, Observer, and Analyst of World Affairs
1958 - Frederic W. Heimberger, Vice-President in charge of Instruction and Research at The Ohio State University
1970 - John A. Scott, Editor and Publisher, Lafayette Journal and Courier
1982 - James L. Fisher, President, Council for the Advancement and Support of Education
1991 - Carl Allan de Graaf, Associate Professor of Education, Indiana University
1995 - Thomas Huge, Actor and Entertainer, Class of 1982


For select years in the 1980s and 1990s, the individuals listed were guest speakers at ceremonies for individual colleges.

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