Nine men and three women will receive honorary degrees at Harvard’s 351st Commencement Exercises this morning, including the Hon. Daniel Patrick Moynihan, who will speak at the Commencement Afternoon Exercises.
In alphabetical order, the recipients are Sydney Brenner, Doctor of Sciences; Peter Brown, Doctor of Laws; Katherine Dunham, Doctor of Arts; Albert O. Hirschman, Doctor of Laws; Yuan T. Lee, Doctor of Science; Daniel Patrick Moynihan, Doctor of Laws; Howard Raiffa, Doctor of Laws; Mamphela Aletta Ramphele, Doctor of Laws; Julius B. Richmond, Doctor of Science; Neil L. Rudenstine, Doctor of Laws; Ruth J. Simmons, Doctor of Laws; and Sir Bernard Williams, Doctor of Laws.
Doctor of Sciences
Sydney Brenner, Distinguished Research Professor at the Salk Institute, La Jolla, California, is a co-discoverer of messenger RNA and a pioneer in the techniques of cloning and gene sequencing.
Brenner was born in South Africa in 1927 and educated at the University of Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, in medicine and science. He received a Ph.D. from Oxford University in 1952. He worked at the Medical Research Council in Cambridge from 1956 until his retirement in 1992. Brenner served as director of the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology from 1979 until 1987, and as director of the Unit of Molecular Genetics from 1987 until 1992.
He did his early research in the genetics of bacteria and bacterial viruses. Later, he co-discovered messenger RNA, which carries instructions for making proteins from genes to RNA assembly mechanisms in cells. Brenner also worked with Francis Crick, co-discoverer of the structure of DNA, to show that the chemical code of messenger RNA is complementary to that of DNA.
In the 1960s, Brenner initiated research on the roundworm, C. elegans, showing that it is a powerful experimental model for studying biologic processes in many animals. He foresaw that cloning and gene mapping would open up roads to genetic knowledge. He also established the genome of the puffer fish as a tool for analyzing genetic processes in vertebrates, including humans.
Brenner has been a Fellow of King’s College, Cambridge, since 1959, and was named a Foreign Honorary Member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and a Foreign Associate of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences.
The many prizes Brenner has won include the Albert Lasker Award for Special Achievement in Medical Science, the Copley Medal of the Royal Society of London, the Kyoto Prize, and the Genetics Society of America Medal.
Doctor of Laws
Historian Peter Brown is recognized as having virtually created the study of late antiquity, that crucial historical period in which paganism yielded to Christianity and the outlines of the early medieval world emerged from the disintegrating Roman Empire.
He is the author of “Augustine of Hippo” (1967); “The World of Late Antiquity” (1972); “Religion and Society in the Age of Saint Augustine” (1972); “The Making of Late Antiquity” (1978); “The Cult of the Saints” (1981); “Society and the Holy in Late Antiquity” (1982); “Body and Society” (1988); “Power and Persuasion” (1992): “Authority and the Sacred” (1995); “The Rise of Western Christendom: 200-1000 A.D.” (1996); and “Poverty and Leadership in the Later Roman Empire” (2002). Brown’s scholarly rigor is matched by a graceful, fulsome prose style rare in the academy.
Born in Dublin in 1935, Brown earned an M.A. from Oxford University in 1956. He has served as a fellow of All Souls College, Oxford, 1956-75; professor of history at Royal Holloway College, University of London, 1975-78; and professor of classics and history, University of California, Berkeley, 1978-86. He is currently the Philip and Beulah Rollins Professor of History at Princeton University, where he is as well known for his vivid, stirring lectures as for his scholarship.
Brown is a Fellow of the British Academy, the Royal Historical Society, the American Society of Arts and Sciences, the American Philosophical Society, the Medieval Academy of American, Fellow of the Royal Netherlands Academy, and the Academia de Bones Artes, Barcelona. He received the Arts Council of Great Britain Award, 1967; a MacArthur Fellowship, 1982; the Ralph Waldo Emerson Award, 1989; the Vursell Award, 1990; the Heineken Prize, Amsterdam, 1994; the Chevalier de l’Ordre des Lettres et des Arts, 1996; and the Andrew Mellon Fellowship, 2002.
Doctor of Arts
Noted for her work as a pioneering dancer and choreographer, Katherine Dunham has also made an indelible mark as an anthropologist, educator, author, director, producer, and activist. She founded the Ballet Negre company in Chicago in 1931 and the Negro Dance Group in 1937. She created the role of Georgia Brown for the Broadway production of “Cabin in the Sky,” and in Hollywood she made such films as “Stormy Weather” and “Pardon my Sarong.” She produced musicals in New York and choreographed in Paris and at the New York Metropolitan Opera.
Dunham attended the University of Chicago, majoring in anthropology, and studied dance with Ludmilla Speranzeva, Vera Mirova, Mark Turbyfill, and Adolph Bolm. For more than 30 years, she maintained the only permanently self-subsidized dance troupe in the United States.
She has been honored with many awards and 48 honorary doctoral degrees. In 1979, at the Katherine Dunham Gala at Carnegie Hall, she received the Albert Schweitzer Music Award. In 1983 she was one of five distinguished artists to receive the Kennedy Center Honors Award, and in 1986, she was the recipient of the prestigious Samuel H. Scripps American Dance Festival Award.
A lifelong social activist, Dunham made national headlines at age 82 by going on a 47-day hunger strike to protest the U.S. government’s policy of returning Haitian refugees to their native land. Now in her early ’90s, Dunham is currently the subject of two documentaries (slated for release in fall 2002) and continues to teach and lecture throughout the United States.
Albert O. Hirschman
Doctor of Laws
A seminal thinker in the field of economic and political development, Albert O. Hirschman was born in Berlin in 1915. He left Germany when Hitler came to power in 1933 and studied economics at the Sorbonne in Paris, the London School of Economics, and the University of Trieste, Italy, where he received a doctorate in 1938. He returned to Paris and volunteered in the French army. He worked with Varian Fry, the Harvard graduate known as the “American Schindler,” who saved numerous refugees stranded in Vichy France.
Arriving in the United States in 1941, Hirschman taught at the University of California, Berkeley, spent three years in the U.S. Army, and, as a member of the Federal Reserve, worked on the postwar reconstruction of Western Europe. He has taught at Yale (1956-58), Columbia (1958-64), and Harvard (1964-74). In 1974 he jointed the School of Social Science of the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, N.J., becoming emeritus in 1985.
Hirschman’s many books include “The Strategy of Economic Development” (1958); “Journeys Toward Progress: Success of Economic Policy-Making in Latin America” (1963); “Development Projects Observed” (1967); “Getting Ahead Collectively: Grassroots Experiences in Latin America” (1984), “Rival Views of Market Society and Other Recent Essays” (1986); “A Propensity to Self-Subversion” (1995); and “Crossing Boundaries: Selected Writings” (1998).
Hirschman has received many prizes and honorary degrees from universities in the United States, Europe, and Latin America and is a Distinguished Fellow of the American Economic Association and a member of the National Academy of Sciences. He has received the Order of San Carlos from the government of Colombia and the Order of the Southern Cross from the government of Brazil.
Yuan T. Lee
Doctor of Science
Yuan T. Lee won a Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1986 and currently is president of the Academia Sinica, a government-sponsored research institution in Taiwan.
Lee was born in 1936 in Hsinchu, Taiwan. His elementary school education was interrupted when his family was relocated to the mountains to avoid Allied bombing during World War II.
The National Taiwan University admitted Lee in 1955 without requiring him to take an entrance examination. He received a B.S. in chemistry in 1959, then went on to earn a master’s degree in 1961 from National Tsinghua University. Afterward, he received a Ph.D. and did post-doctoral research at the University of California, Berkeley.
In 1967, Lee joined Dudley Herschbach’s group at Harvard. Herschbach was a leader in the field of using beams of molecules, brought together at supersonic speeds, to permit detailed observations of what occurs during chemical reactions. Lee extended Herschbach’s technique to cover the study of larger, more complex molecules. The two shared the 1986 Nobel Prize in chemistry.
Lee went on to hold academic positions at the University of Chicago and the University of California, Berkeley. In 1994, he retired from the Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory at the University of California and assumed the presidency of Academia Sinica.
Lee is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, as well as a foreign member of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences, the Gottingen Academy of Science, the Indian Academy of Sciences, the Korean Academy of Science and Technology, and the Third World Academy of Sciences. In addition to being a Nobel Laureate, he has received numerous honors that include the U.S. National Medal of Science, the Faraday Medal of the Royal Chemical Society in Great Britain, and the U.S. Department of Energy’s Ernest O. Lawrence Award.
Lee has also received honorary degrees from 19 institutions around the world.
Daniel Patrick Moynihan
Doctor of Laws
Daniel Patrick Moynihan served as the senior United States senator from New York. Moynihan was first elected to the U.S. Senate in 1976. He won re-election in 1982, 1988, and 1994. Throughout his career, Moynihan was a powerful and sometimes controversial voice for social change.
Moynihan retired from the Senate in January 2001. He is currently a University Professor at Syracuse University and senior policy scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, D.C.
Moynihan, who served as a professor of government at Harvard from 1966 to 1977, has written or edited 18 books. His latest, “Secrecy: The American Experience,” grows out of his longstanding interest in and distrust of the government’s appetite for secrets. The book, which expands on the report of the bipartisan Commission on Protecting and Reducing Government Secrecy, chaired by Moynihan, was published in 1998.
Moynihan’s career in government service spans more than four decades. He worked on Averell Harriman’s campaign for New York governor in 1954 and served on his staff until 1958. He began working in the federal government in 1961 as an assistant to the secretary of labor in the Kennedy Administration, eventually rising to assistant secretary of labor for policy planning. He has served in the Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, and Ford administrations in cabinet-level or sub-cabinet-level positions.
Moynihan also served as ambassador to India from 1973 to 1975, and as U.S. representative to the United Nations from 1975 to 1976.
He has received numerous honors and awards, including, in 2000, the nation’s highest civil honor, the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
Doctor of Laws
Howard Raiffa is the Frank P. Ramsey Professor of Managerial Economics Emeritus, and a pioneer in the field of decision analysis. A mathematician by training, Raiffa is an originator of the now famous “decision tree,” and has done extensive work on developing techniques to help decision makers think more systematically about complex choices involving uncertainties and tradeoffs.
As a scientific adviser to McGeorge Bundy, White House assistant for national security under Presidents Kennedy and Johnson, and Philip Handler, president of the National Academy of Sciences, Raiffa helped to negotiate the creation of an East-West think tank with the aim of reducing Cold War tensions.
Raiffa received his doctorate in mathematics in 1951 from the University of Michigan. He was an assistant professor of mathematical statistics at Columbia University before coming to Harvard in 1957.
Raiffa became a professor in 1960, and in 1964 was named to the Ramsey chair, a joint chair held by the Business School and the Kennedy School of Government. He has also held professorial positions in the Department of Economics and in the Department of Statistics.
With Roger Fisher at the Law School, Raiffa helped to launch the Program on Negotiation. He has received numerous honorary degrees, and, in 2000, received the prestigious Dickson Prize for Science, conferred annually by University Professors at Carnegie Mellon University.
Mamphela Aletta Ramphele
Doctor of Laws
As managing director of the World Bank Group, Mamphela Aletta Ramphele is responsible for handling the institution’s human development activities in the area of education, health, nutrition and population, and social protection. Ramphele, an anthropologist and medical doctor from South Africa, was vice chancellor of the University of Cape Town before she was appointed to the World Bank post in 2000.
A former Bunting Institute fellow, Ramphele has been a leader in development issues and an advocate for projects for disadvantaged people throughout South Africa. She has received numerous national and international awards, as well as 12 honorary doctorates from institutions that include the University of Cambridge, the University of Nottingham, the University of Sussex, Tufts University, Smith College, and the University of Cape Town.
Ramphele grew up in a remote rural area in South Africa. She persevered against the odds to become a doctor, obtaining her medical degree from the University of Natal in 1972. As a student, she became involved in the Black Consciousness Movement and was banished by the government to the remote township of Lenyenye from 1977 to 1984. While in Lenyenye, she continued her work to assist the rural poor.
Ramphele holds a doctorate in social anthropology from the University of Cape Town, a BCom degree in administration from the University of South Africa, and diplomas in Tropical Health and Hygiene and Public Health from the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg.
Julius B. Richmond
Doctor of Science
Julius B. Richmond, John D. MacArthur Professor of Health Policy Emeritus, is noted for his work in shaping the nation’s health policies. He served as Surgeon General and assistant secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services from 1977 to 1981.
Trained in pediatrics and child development, Richmond was a pioneer in introducing psychosocial development into pediatric education, research, and services. His collaborative work with Bettye Caldwell, now professor emerita at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, on the development of young children in poverty led to his appointment in 1965 as the first director of the Head Start program.
In 1979, Richmond issued the report “Healthy People: The Surgeon General’s Report on Health Promotion and Disease Prevention.” This report established, for the first time, quantitative health goals for the nation for the next decade. The process has been continued by the U.S. Public Health Service through its recent report, “Healthy People 2010: National Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Objectives.”
From 1983 to 1988, Richmond was director of the Division of Health Policy Research and Education at Harvard University. From 1987 to 1993, he chaired the steering committee of the Forum on the Future of Children and Families of the National Academy of Sciences.
Richmond has received the C. Anderson Aldrich Award of the American Academy of Pediatrics, the Gustav O. Lienhard Award and the Walsh McDermott Medal of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences, numerous other awards and a number of honorary degrees.
Richmond continues to work in the area of health policy with a special emphasis on health promotion and disease prevention in children.
Neil L. Rudenstine
Doctor of Laws
Neil L. Rudenstine is chair of the advisory board for ArtSTOR at the A.W. Mellon Foundation. He served as the 26th president of Harvard University from 1991 to 2001. From 1988 to 1991, he served as executive vice president of the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, and during the two preceding decades, he was a faculty member at Princeton University. A scholar of Renaissance literature and associate professor and then professor of English, Rudenstine was also dean of students, dean of the college and provost at Princeton.
Rudenstine served at Harvard from 1964 to 1968 as an instructor and then as an assistant professor in the Department of English and American Literature and Language. He received his bachelor’s degree from Princeton in 1956, a second B.A. and an M.A. from Oxford University, where he was a Rhodes Scholar, and his Ph.D. in English from Harvard.
Rudenstine’s writing and scholarly works include “Sidney’s Poetic Development” (1967); “In Pursuit of the Ph.D.” (1992), a collaboration with William G. Bowen; and “Pointing Our Thoughts” (2001), a collection of writings on higher education.
Rudenstine’s term as Harvard president was marked by his encouragement of collaboration across scholarly disciplines; extensive restoration and renovation of Harvard’s physical resources, including renovations of Memorial Hall and all freshman dorms; and leadership of the $2.1 billion University Campaign, the largest fund drive ever mounted by an educational institution.
Ruth J. Simmons
Doctor of Laws
Ruth J. Simmons became the 18th president of Brown University (where she is also a professor in the Department of Comparative Literature and the Department of Africana Studies) in July 2001. She was president of Smith College from 1995 to 2001. She held administrative positions at Spelman College, at the University of Southern California, and, from 1983 to 1990 and 1992 to 1995, at Princeton University. A native of Texas, Simmons received a B.A. from Dillard University in New Orleans in 1967 and a Ph.D. in Romance Languages and Literatures from Harvard University in 1973.
Simmons has written on the works of David Diop and Aime Cesaire and is the author of a book on education in Haiti. She has spoken and written on educational and public policy issues, including diversity, liberal arts, science education, and the role of women in society. She is the recipient of a number of prizes and fellowships, including a German DAAD fellowship and a Fulbright Fellowship to France.
Sir Bernard Williams
Doctor of Laws
Sir Bernard Williams is a Fellow of All Souls College, Oxford University, and Deutsch Professor of Philosophy at University of California, Berkeley. From 1990 to 1996 he was White’s Professor of Moral Philosophy at Oxford. He previously held chairs at Cambridge University, London University, and University College London, and from 1979 to 1987 he was provost of King’s College, Cambridge. He received the M.A. from Balliol College, Oxford.
Williams’ principal contributions to philosophy have been in ethics, but he has also written on personal identity, the theory of knowledge, and the history of philosophy. His publications include “Morality” (1972), “Problems of the Self” (1973), “Ethics and the Limits of Philosophy” (1985), “Shame and Necessity” (1993), and “Making Sense of Humanity” (1995). He was chairman of a British government Committee on Obscenity and Film Censorship in the late 1970s. Williams is a Fellow of the British Academy and a Foreign Honorary Member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.