The New School has revealed the speakers who will address the class of 2012 at the university’s 76th Commencement Ceremony next month.
The keynote speaker will be Robert Hammond, the co-founder and executive director of Friends of the High Line. Having originally moved to the West Village to pursue a career as an artist, Hammond is now known as the head of the group that salvaged an abandoned elevated railroad track in Chelsea and converted it into the High Line – one of the most celebrated parks in New York City.
Honorees at the ceremony will include psychiatrist and historian Robert Jay Lifton, journalist Brooke Gladstone, and Ana L. Oliveira of the New York Women’s Foundation.
Lifton is known for his work on the psychological causes and effects of political violence and war. He has focused much of his research on the Holocaust, and is the author of more than 20 books, including “The Nazi Doctors and Destroying the World in Order to Save It.”
Gladstone is the co-host and managing editor of NPR’s national broadcast On the Media, and author of “The Influencing Machine.” Her work has appeared in the London Observer, the Washington Post, and The American Journalism Review. Gladstone is the recipient of two Peabody Awards, a National Press Club Award, and an Overseas Press Club award among others.
Oliveira, who has an M.A. in Medical Anthropology from The New School for Social Research, is currently the President and CEO of the New York Women’s Foundation, as well as the former Executive Director of the Gay Men’s Health Crisis. She has worked in the health and human services field for over 20 years, with many of her efforts revolving around program development for vulnerable populations throughout New York City. In 2005, Newsweek profiled her as one of “America’s Best.”
The Commencement Ceremony will be held on May 18 at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in Midtown. Last year’s ceremony featured a keynote address by New York magazine essayist and former New York Times columnist Frank Rich.