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Honorary Degree Recipients

Commencement Speakers

Christopher M. Dadlez
Doctor of Humane Letters

Christopher M. Dadlez

Christopher M. Dadlez is president and chief executive officer of Saint Francis Care, New England’s largest Catholic hospital. The integrated healthcare system—which includes a community hospital, a rehabilitation hospital, community-based health centers, and a range of other services—is located in Hartford, Conn.

Prior to joining Saint Francis in 2004, Dadlez served as president and CEO of Mercy Medical Center in Canton, Ohio. Over the past 30 years, he has led large healthcare organizations in five states.

While at Saint Francis, Dadlez has directed his passion toward eliminating health-care disparities in underserved communities.

Notably, he has supported efforts to reduce prostate cancer among black men through the Curtis D. Robinson Men’s Health Institute at Saint Francis, a program conducting research through an affiliation with Tuskegee University. In recognition of this leadership, Tuskegee University has recognized him with its prestigious Booker T. Washington Legacy Award.

Under his direction, Saint Francis has also recently launched the Center for Health Equity, an initiative dedicated to reducing healthcare disparities and enhancing cultural competencies among healthcare providers. On the national level, he holds leadership roles in the American Hospital Association, in which he serves on the Equity of Care Committee. On the statewide level, he helped develop the Connecticut Hospital Association collaborative on eliminating health disparities.

In 2009, Connecticut Governor M. Jodi Rell appointed Dadlez to the Connecticut Healthcare Reform Advisory Board, representing the Connecticut hospital industry. He is a member of the Governor’s Prevention Partnership, and he served on the Governor’s Council on Economic Competitiveness and Technology.

As a member of the board of the MetroHartford Alliance, he chairs its Diversity and Inclusion Committee. He also served on the Hartford Mayor’s Healthy Communities Initiative and the Committee to End Chronic Homelessness. In addition, he is a member of the Capital Area Health Consortium and the Connecticut Catholic Hospital Council. At Saint Francis, he has also introduced a new Supplier Diversity initiative to help tap the services and products of local minority-, veteran-, and women-owned businesses.

In March 2011, Dadlez was inducted into the Junior Achievement Business Hall of Fame.

Dadlez earned a bachelor’s in biology at the University of New Hampshire. He holds a master’s in hospital administration from the Medical College of Virginia.

He and his wife, Eileen, live in Simsbury, Conn. They are the parents of Dr. Nina Dadlez, a pediatric resident at Columbia Presbyterian Hospital in New York City, and Gregory Dadlez, manager of neurosciences at Ochsner Medical Center in New Orleans.

Bernard Cornwell
Doctor of Letters

Bernard Cornwell

Author Bernard Cornwell has published 50 novels, most of which focus on the drama, perils, and triumphs of early European wars.

Cornwell was born in London, England, in 1944 to parents who both served in the air force. His mother was in Britain’s Women’s Auxiliary Air Force and his father was a Canadian airman. A war baby, he was placed in an orphanage from which he was adopted by a couple who belonged to a pacifist religious sect called the Peculiar People.

After graduating from London University he worked as a teacher. During this time, Cornwell persistently attempted to enlist in the British armed services but was rejected due to nearsightedness. Eventually, Cornwell joined the BBC as a researcher for the television program Nationwide. He went on to become editor-in-chief of Thames TV News.

Following love to the United States, Cornwell married an American, Judy, in 1980. Unable to obtain a green card, Cornwell needed a job that did not require a work permit and so he began writing novels.

Over the next several decades, Cornwell wrote a series of successful books, including his most popular work, the 21 Sharpe novels chronicling a British rifleman’s rise through the ranks of the British Army during the Napoleonic Wars. The series was later adapted into a television show featuring actor Sean Bean.

Cornwell has also written series on the American Civil War, the Arthurian saga, and the Hundred Years War. In 2000, the Queen of England made Cornwell an officer of the Order of the British Empire for services to literature and television production.

Currently, Cornwell and his wife divide their time between Charleston, South Carolina, and Chatham on Cape Cod, Massachusetts, where he performs on stage with the Monomoy Theatre and continues to write his acclaimed wartime works.

Other Honorary Degree Recipients

John Corigliano
Doctor of Music

John Corigliano

Composer John Corigliano continues to add to one of the richest, most unusual, and most widely celebrated bodies of work any composer has created over the past 40 years.

Corigliano's scores, numbering over 100, have won him the Pulitzer Prize, the Grawemeyer Award, three Grammy Awards, and an Academy Award. His works—including three symphonies and eight concerti among over 100 chamber, vocal, choral, and orchestral works—have been performed and recorded by many of the most prominent orchestras, soloists, and chamber musicians in the world.

Recent scores include One Sweet Morning (2011), for mezzo-soprano and orchestra, co-commissioned by the New York Philharmonic and the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra to commemorate the 10-year anniversary of 9/11; Conjurer (2008), for percussion and string orchestra, commissioned for and introduced by Dame Evelyn Glennie; Concerto for Violin and Orchestra: The Red Violin (2005), developed from the themes of the score to the François Girard’s film of the same name, which won Corigliano an Oscar in 1999; Mr. Tambourine Man: Seven Poems of Bob Dylan (2000) for orchestra and amplified soprano, the recording of which won the Grammy for Best Contemporary Composition in 2008; Symphony No. 3: Circus Maximus (2004), scored simultaneously for wind orchestra and a multitude of wind ensembles; and Symphony No. 2, for which he was awarded a the 2001 Pulitzer Prize in Music.

One of the few living composers to have a string quartet named for him, Corigliano serves on the composition faculty at the Juilliard School of Music and holds the position of Distinguished Professor of Music at Lehman College, City University of New York, which has established a scholarship in his name.

For the past 19 years, Corigliano and his partner, the composer-librettist Mark Adamo, have divided their time between Manhattan and Kent Cliffs, New York.

Richard D. Fain
Doctor of Commercial Science

Richard D. Fain

Richard D. Fain has overseen the development and growth of Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. for 25 years, and since 1988, has served as chairman and chief executive officer of the global cruise company, which owns Royal Caribbean International, Celebrity Cruises, Pullmantur, Azamara Club Cruises, CDF Croisières de France, and the joint venture, TUI Cruises.

Together, these six brands operate 41 ships around the world; comprise more than 60,000 shipboard and shoreside employees; and serve more than 5 million guests annually. Prior to joining Royal Caribbean, Fain spent 13 years at the London-based, cargo-shipping company Gotaas-Larsen Shipping Corp.

Fain currently serves on the University of Miami’s Board of Trustees, the national board of the Posse Foundation and the Florida Council of 100. He is a former chair of the Miami Business Forum, the Greater Miami Convention and Visitors Bureau, the United Way of Miami-Dade, and the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA), the world’s largest cruise industry organization representing nearly 17,000 affiliated travel agencies.

To further the company’s commitment to the communities in which it does business, Fain was instrumental in launching Royal Caribbean’s Get Involved Volunteer Everywhere (G.I.V.E.) Day, an annual community service event that brings together Royal Caribbean employees, their families, friends, vendors, and business partners to assist nonprofit organizations and improve the quality of life in their local communities. Now in its 16th consecutive year, the program has expanded into the communities where the company’s 11 international offices are around the world.

In 2010, Fain was honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award by Travel Weekly, the U.S. newspaper of the travel industry. In 2004, Fain received the Ultimate CEO Award from the South Florida Business Journal and accepted the Ellis Island Medal of Honor from the National Ethnic Coalition Organization. He also was inducted into the South Florida Business Hall of Fame in October 2004.

Fain holds a BS in economics from the University of California at Berkeley and a MBA from the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania. Fain and his wife, Colleen, have four children and four gorgeous grandchildren.

Walter Wick
Doctor of Fine Arts

Walter Wick

Walter Wick is an award-winning photographic illustrator and author of children’s books.

His acclaimed search-and-find series, I Spy and Can You See What I See?, have entertained millions of children for the past two decades.

A constant tinkerer as a child, the native of Hartford, Conn., studied photojournalism and landscape photography at Paier College of Art in Hamden, Conn. After graduating in 1973 and working in a commercial studio in Hartford, Wick moved to New York and opened his own studio, working for various magazines, including Psychology Today, Discover, and Games.

In 1985, one of his images—a shot of odds and ends—caught the eye of Jean Marzollo, the editor of Let's Find Out, a magazine for kindergartners published by Scholastic. Eventually, Wick and Marzollo collaborated on the enormously successful I Spy picture books. By 1999, Wick and Marzollo had produced eight original titles and sales in the millions.

The first book that Wick illustrated and wrote himself, A Drop of Water: A Book of Science and Wonder, has won numerous honors including the Boston Globe-Horn Book first prize for non-fiction in 1997. Walter Wick's Optical Tricks was awarded a Parent’s Choice silver medal and was named a New York Times Best Illustrated Children's Book in 1998. His third solo project Can You See What I See?: Picture Puzzles to Search and Solve debuted on the New York Times bestseller list in 2002.

A retrospective of his work, Walter Wick: Games, Gizmos, and Toys in the Attic, has been on exhibit at museums across the country, including the Lyman Allyn Art Museum in New London, Conn.; the Walters Art Museum in Baltimore, Md.; and Brigham Young University Museum of Art in Provo, Utah.

Wick and his wife, Linda Cheverton-Wick, live in downtown Hartford and work nearby in a 1920 firehouse that they purchased from the city and transformed into an art studio.

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