Touro Law Center Celebrates 33rd Commencement Exercises
Congratulations, class of 2015!
Touro Law Center celebrated its 33rd annual Commencement exercises on the evening of Sunday, May 17 at the Tilles Center for Performing Arts in Brookville, New York, awarding 194 juris doctor degrees, 11 Master of Laws in U.S. Legal Studies degrees, and 2 Master of Laws degrees to graduates.
Rena Seplowitz, voted best professor by this year’s graduating class, described the varied interests and experiences of the class of 2015 that made them such an exceptional group, and praised their initiative in being the inaugurating class to participate in the New York State Pro Bono Scholars program.
Touro College President Dr. Alan Kadish conferred honorary degrees upon Richard D. Parsons and Hon. Peter King, U.S. Representative for New York's 2nd congressional district. Dean Patricia E. Salkin, J.D., presented eight students and faculty members with awards onstage, among those being the Paul Marks Public Service Award, presented to Professor Leif Rubinstein; the Milton Handler Scholarship Award, presented to Professor Sara Adams-Schoen; and the Excellence in Teaching Award, presented to Professor Fabio Arcila.
Daniela Giordano and Matthew Landon Zafrin were named this year’s valedictorians, of the full-time and part-time programs, respectively, while Darren Stakey and Jeffrey Gautsche were named salutatorians. Jason W. Prince, who received the 2015 Ronni D. Cohen Class Orator Award, delivered an entertaining student address that earned him a standing ovation from the class. Other students and faculty were honored at an awards ceremony and dessert reception earlier in April.
In the 2015 commencement address, Richard Parsons, former chairman of Time Warner and Citigroup and former advisor to Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama, spoke about networking and interdependence as being key factors of success.
“[Before I left for the University of Hawaii] my grandmother…said: ‘Just be the person everyone else roots for.’ If I were to tell you the biggest single factor in the limited success I’ve had, it would be [that advice]: being the person other people wanted to see succeed.”
“We live in a world now that’s enormously complex, highly interconnected, totally global…and almost no one gets anything done in this world by himself or herself. The reality is, the more people you can get who are prepared to lend a shoulder for you to stand on, the more success you’re going to have in life.”
In her valedictory remarks, Ms. Giordano reminded her peers that while “law school taught us to think like lawyers, I hope we don’t forget to think like human beings. I hope we continue to fight for what we believe in, always appreciate those who stand beside us, and grow to be lawyers with honor and integrity.”
Congratulations, graduates and awardees!