Blumenthal to address WCSU graduate degree recipients at ceremony

DANBURY, CONN. — Connecticut State Attorney General Richard Blumenthal will address Western Connecticut State University’s 2008 graduate degree candidates at 7 p.m. on Friday, May 16, in the Feldman Arena in the William O’Neill Athletic and Convocation Center on the university’s Westside campus, Lake Avenue Extension in Danbury.

This second annual commencement exercise solely for students obtaining a graduate degree is especially auspicious because it marks the first time the university will confer doctoral degrees. More than a dozen candidates defended their dissertations to receive education doctorates in instructional leadership, or Ed.D. degrees.

When asked about his selection as commencement speaker, Blumenthal said, “I am excited about joining in this inspiring and joyous occasion and addressing the tremendous opportunities for leadership by these graduates in their careers and communities. The best leadership, in my experience, is leadership by example — giving back in service, public interest work and providing models of good citizenship and civic achievement, as well as professional accomplishment and private gain.”

Dean of Graduate Studies and External Programs Dr. Ellen Durnin said the graduate commencement committee unanimously selected Blumenthal to address degree candidates.

“Mr. Blumenthal is considered a role model and is admired for his tireless work on behalf of the residents of Connecticut, his passion and his integrity,” Durnin said. “He exemplifies many of the wonderful qualities that we see in our graduate students, who will celebrate the successful completion of their studies in rigorous graduate programs, while simultaneously managing career and family responsibilities. We look forward to hearing Mr. Blumenthal speak about how our graduates can utilize their education, talent and experience to make a difference in their organizations and communities.”

Blumenthal was first elected in 1990 and currently is serving his fifth term as Attorney General. His previous public service has included terms in the Connecticut House of Representatives from 1984 to 1987, and the State Senate from 1987 to 1990.

From 1977 to 1981, Blumenthal served as U.S. Attorney for Connecticut, the state’s chief federal prosecutor. In this role, he prosecuted drug traffickers, organized and white-collar criminals, civil rights violators, perpetrators of consumer fraud and polluters.

Blumenthal graduated magna cum laude from Harvard College and from Yale Law School, where he was editor of the Yale Law Journal. 

According to his official state biography, “Blumenthal’s aggressive law enforcement for consumer protection, environmental stewardship, labor rights and personal privacy has helped reshape the role of state attorneys general nationwide — and recover hundreds of millions of dollars for Connecticut taxpayers and consumers each year.”

For more information, call the Office of University Relations at (203) 837-8486.

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