The University of Portland has announced honorees to be recognized during 2017 commencement ceremonies, to be held on campus in the Chiles Center Sunday, May 7. Commencement I begins at 10 a.m. and is held for undergraduate and graduate students of the Pamplin School of Business, the Shiley School of Engineering, and the School of Nursing. Commencement II starts at 2 p.m. and is for graduates of the College of Arts and Sciences and the School of Education.

• Sister of St. Mary of Oregon Charlene Herinckx, a 1978 U.P. graduate, will receive the university’s highest honor, the Christus Magister Medal. Sister Charlene, who earned a master’s degree in education at the University of Portland, was elected superior general of her order, the only religious community to be founded in Oregon, in 2010 and was re-elected in 2015. A teacher and principal at schools across the Portland metro region, she also served on the National Religious Vocation Conference Board.

• Celia Hammond, speaker for both ceremonies and an honorary doctorate recipient, was appointed to the top position of University of Notre Dame Australia (UNDA) in 2008, becoming its vice chancellor at the age of 39.

• Retired Air Force Lt. Gen. Dana Atkins retired when he was the commander of Alaskan Command, Alaska NORAD Region, Joint Task Force Alaska, and 11th Air Force at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska. He earned his bachelor’s degree in biology from the University of Portland, class of 1977.

• Holy Cross Father George C. Bernard has spent the last 48 years at the University of Portland, where he has served as a Holy Cross priest, professor and administrator.

• Anthony Doerr, author of “All the Light We Cannot See,” was awarded his doctorate of humane letters when he spoke as a guest of the University of Portland’s annual Schoenfeldt Distinguished Writers Series on Feb. 27.

• Brian Doyle became the editor of the University’s Portland magazine in 1991. During his tenure, Portland has consistently been ranked among the best university magazines in the country and, in 2005, won Newsweek’s Sibley Award as the top university magazine in America. Doyle has also authored many award-winning books of fiction, essays and poems.

• Rafer Owens of Compton, California, has dedicated his life to healing the community in which he grew up and raises his own children. Owens is now a Los Angeles County deputy sheriff working in community relations and the head pastor of Faith Inspirational Missionary Baptist Church. In 2006, he partnered with area churches to found the Compton Initiative.

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