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Commencement SpeakerCorey Flintoff


Tlingit elder and Native leader Walter A. Soboleff Sr. was the keynote address during the University of Alaska Fairbanks' 81st commencement ceremony Sunday, May 11, 2003. Honorary degrees were be awarded during the ceremony to civil engineer Helen Atkinson, airline executive and chemical engineer Ronald F. Cosgrave, ornithologist Johannes Erritzoe and project manager Kenneth "Utuayuk" Toovak.

Soboleff has been a highly respected and active member of a number of organizations throughout Alaska. An ordained Presbyterian minister, the 95-year-old Soboleff served seven terms as president of the Alaska Native Brotherhood, two terms as its secretary, was the chairman of the Alaska State Board of Education, and served on a wide variety of boards and councils ranging from the Sealaska Corporation to the state historic sites program to UAF's Alaska Native Studies program, where he was the first department head. In addition to a 1952 honorary doctor of divinity degree from the University of Dubuque, Soboleff in 1968 became the first Alaska Native to be presented with an honorary doctorate from UAF.

 
 

For more information about UAF commencement, contact commencement@uaf.edu.

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