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BU to award three honorary doctorates at commencement

By : Katie Ellis


Binghamton University will award three honorary doctorates during Commencement ceremonies Saturday and Sunday, May 15 and 16, in the Events Center on campus.

Engineering educator Eugene M. DeLoatch will receive the honorary Doctor of Science degree during the Graduate School ceremony at 5 p.m. Saturday; composer and teacher Ezra Laderman will receive the honorary Doctor of Music degree during the Harpur College of Arts and Sciences ceremony beginning at 9 a.m. Sunday; and philanthropist and vice president of corporate communications at the Federal National Mortgage Association (Fannie Mae) Charlene Kahlor Kramer ’73 will receive the honorary Doctor of Humane Letters at Sunday’s 1:30 p.m. ceremony for the professional schools. Each degree recipient will make remarks at their respective ceremony.

DeLoatch, current and founding dean of the engineering school at Morgan State University in Baltimore, is a recognized leader in his profession. He has devoted his career to enabling more minorities to pursue technological fields, including working closely with the Watson School of Engineering and Applied Science to establish The Partnership, a program that identifies academically talented engineering students at Morgan State and other historically black institutions for pursuit of graduate studies.

DeLoatch earned his bachelor of science degree in mathematics and electrical engineering from Tougaloo College in Mississippi and Lafayette College in Pennsylvania, and his master of science in electrical engineering and PhD in bioengineering from the Polytechnic University of Brooklyn. He has also taught at both the undergraduate and graduate levels at Howard University.

From his solo instrumental and vocal works to large-scale choral and orchestral music, three-time Guggenheim fellow Laderman is widely recognized as a major influence in American composition. After completing military service in the U.S. Army during World War II, Laderman studied composition with Stefan Wolpe of New York and Miriam Gideon at Brooklyn College of the City University of New York, where he earned his bachelor of arts degree. He continued his training at Columbia University, earning a master’s degree there.

Laderman has taught at Sarah Lawrence College and was appointed professor and composer-in-residence at Binghamton University in 1972. Interspersed with his academic duties, he has been a productive composer. He has been commissioned three times by the Philadelphia Orchestra and twice by the National, Louisville and Chicago symphonies. He has written nine operas, including his best-known, Galileo, Galilei, premiered in 1979 by the Tri-Cities Opera of Binghamton.

Kramer, a Harpur College alumna, was the first in her family to attend college, earning a bachelor’s degree in English. In a desire to help others overcome similar financial barriers, she and her husband, Roger Kramer ’72, have endowed a number of scholarships at Binghamton for academically gifted students with financial need.

Kramer joined Fannie Mae, the nation’s largest source of funds for home mortgages in 1978, and is the key architect of an outreach program specifically designed to help economically disadvantaged and minority families buy their own homes. As a senior executive, she manages Fannie Mae’s national award-winning advertising campaigns, as well as its internal communications, publications, video production and web communications. She also oversees Fannie Mae’s social responsibility outreach programs, and her work has led to praise for the corporation and its policies from such publications as Working Mother and Fortune.

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Last Updated: 10/14/08