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April 18, 2005

Pennsylvania Gov. Edward G. Rendell will Deliver Commencement Address for Lincoln on Sunday, May 1, 2005
Lincoln will Graduate 375 Students and also Award Honorary Degrees to Gov. Rendell and Three Other Distinguished Leaders.

Pennsylvania Gov. Edward G. Rendell will deliver the Commencement Address and also receive an honorary degree as Lincoln University presents its 146th Commencement on Sunday, May 1, 2005.

The 1:30 p.m. program will be held outdoors at the University’s Track and Field Complex in southern Chester County, Pennsylvania. Two hundred and thirty-eight seniors will receive baccalaureate degrees and another 137 students will be awarded master's degrees from Lincoln, which has earned a national reputation for its distinguished role in higher education.

“Lincoln University is honored and pleased that Governor Rendell will serve as our Commencement Speaker,” said University President Ivory V. Nelson, Ph.D., who will preside over the program. “Lincoln is equally pleased to present the Governor with an honorary degree in recognition of his exemplary achievements in public office and outstanding leadership of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.”

Founded in 1854 as America’s first Historically Black University, Lincoln University combines the best elements of a liberal arts and sciences-based undergraduate core curriculum and selected graduate programs to meet the needs of those living in a highly technological and global society. The University is nationally recognized as a major producer of African Americans with undergraduate degrees in the physical sciences (biology, chemistry and physics); computer and informational sciences; biological and life sciences. Lincoln enrolls 2,012 undergraduate and graduate students.

In addition to Gov. Rendell, three other distinguished leaders will also receive honorary degrees. They are: Gwendolyn E. Boyd, an accomplished engineer, and the former National President of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., an international service organization composed of over 250,00 professional and educated women in over 950 chapters throughout the world; Dr. Henry H. Mitchell, a 19 41 Lincoln alumnus, noted theologian, college professor and author of numerous books on religion; and Wilbert A Tatum, a noted journalist and successful businessman, who owns Inner City Broadcasting Corp., which operates radio stations nationwide and the AMSTERDAM NEWS in New York City.

2005 Commencement Speaker
The Honorable Edward G. Rendell: Doctor of Laws Honorary Degree

Edward G. Rendell was inaugurated as Pennsylvania's 45th Governor on January 21, 2003. As Governor, Rendell serves as Chief Executive of the nation's 5th most populous state, and oversees a $21 billion budget. From 1992 through1999, he served as Mayor of the City of Philadelphia. Before serving as Mayor, Rendell was elected District Attorney of Philadelphia for two terms, from 1978 through 1985. As Mayor, his accomplishments included eliminating a $250 million deficit, balancing the City's budget and generating five consecutive budget surpluses.

The Governor, who served as General Chair of the Democratic National Committee during the 2000 Presidential election, has been active in the community through a variety of memberships on boards. He also teaches two government and politics courses at the University of Pennsylvania. An Army veteran, he is also a graduate of Penn (B.A. 1965) and Villanova Law School (J.D. 1968). He and his wife, Marjorie O. Rendell, a Judge on the United States Court of Appeals, have a son, Jesse.

Gwendolyn E. Boyd: Doctor of Humane Letters Honorary Degree
Gwendolyn Elizabeth Boyd, an accomplished engineer, is the former National President of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., an international service organization composed of over 250,000 professional women in over 950 chapters throughout the world. She is currently the Executive Assistant to the Chief of Staff at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (APL). She graduated summa cum laude from Alabama State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in mathematics and a double minor in physics and music. Awarded a fellowship to pursue graduate work at Yale University, she became in May 1979 the first African American female to earn a Master of Science degree in mechanical engineering from this Ivy League institution.

Boyd has received numerous awards and honors, including the 2005 Maynard Jackson Leadership Award from Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc.; induction into the Black AIDS Institute Hall of Fame 2004 for advocacy to promote education and awareness about HIV/AIDS in the Black community in America and Africa; and 2003 listed as one of the Most Distinguished Black College and University Graduates by the editors of US Black Engineer & Information Technology magazine.

Dr. Henry H. Mitchell ’41: Doctor of Humane Letters Honorary Degree
Henry H. Mitchell, D.D., a 19 41 Lincoln alumnus, is a noted theologian, college professor and author of numerous books on religion. He is author of three textbooks, Black Preaching (Harper & Row, 1979; Abingdon, 1990), The Recovery of Preaching (Harper, 1977; based on his 1974 Lyman Beecher Lectures at Yale University); and Celebration and Experience in Preaching (Abingdon, 1990), which was designated by the American Academy of Parish Clergy as one of the top 10 clergy books of 1991. His book, Black Church Beginnings (1650-1900) - a radical rewrite and correction of early Black Church history - was released by Eerdmans Publishing Co. in October 2004.

Besides Lincoln University, Dr. Mitchell, also holds a Bachelor of Divinity and Master’s degree in Divinity from Union Theological Seminary, New York; Master’s degree in linguistics from California State University at Fresno; theology degree from Claremont School of Theology, California; and honorary doctorate degree in divinity from The American Baptist Seminary of the West, Berkeley. He has been married for 60 years to his schoolmate of Union Seminary and Claremont days, Dr. Ella P. Pearson Mitchell. They have three living children and six grandchildren.

Wilbert A. Tatum ’58: Doctor of Letters Honorary Degree
Wilbert “Bill” Tatum, a 1958 Lincoln alumnus, noted journalist and successful businessman, purchased the AMSTERDAM NEWS with his partners in 1971. In 1972, also with partners, he purchased radio stations WLIB and WBLS in New York City. These stations became the flagships of the Inner City Broadcasting Corporation with stations in California, Michigan, Texas, Indiana and New York, as well as corporate stock ownership of the famed Apollo Theatre in Harlem.

In order to continue his passion for journalism, Tatum had to leave America to follow his dream because he was rejected for employment by all the New York newspapers whose segregationist policies prevented him from being considered for any job, including janitor, because he “was too well educated.” He spent an extended period of time in Europe where he was immediately able to get work as a reporter and columnist for Stockholm’s TIDNIGEN in Sweden, and AKUELT in Copenhagen, Denmark.

Besides Lincoln University, Tatum also attended Yale University as a National Urban Fellow, sponsored by the National League of Cities, the United States Conference of Mayors, and the Ford Foundation. He received his Master’s Degree in Urban Studies at Occidental College, Los Angeles, California. He and his wife, Susan Kohn, have a daughter, Elinor, who serves as publisher and editor-in-chief of the AMSTERDAM NEWS.

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