List of commencement speakers is the list of keynote speakers (by year) at RAMI/RIT commencements. Prior to 1995, each college hosted its individual commencement ceremony.[1]


Year Name Notability Date
1902 George M. Forbes[2] Professor at University of Rochester
1903 Algernon S. Crapsey, D.D.[2] Reverend
1904 Leslie W. Miller[2] Principal of School of Industrial Art, Philadelphia, PA
1905 Andrew S. Drape, LL.D[2] Commissioner of Education, State of New York
1906 George A. Benton[2] Judge
1907 Charles C. Albertson, D.D.[2] Pastor of Central Presbyterian Church, Rochester, NY
1908 Arthur A. Hamerschlag[2] Director of Carnegie Institute, Pittsburg, PA
1909 James P. Hanley[2] Superintendent of Art and Manual Training in the Public Schools of New York City and Secretary of National Society for the Promotion of Industrial Education
1910 Benjamin R. Andrews, Ph.D.[2] Secretary of Household Arts, Teachers College, Columbia University, New York City, and Secretary-Treasurer of the American Home Economics Association
1911 John A. Brashear, LL.D.[2] From Pittsburg, PA
1912 P. P. Claxton[2] U.S. Commissioner of Education, Washington, D.C.
1913 C. A. Prosser[2] Secretary of National Society for Promotion of Industrial Education
1914 David Snedden, Ph.D.[2] Massachusetts Commissioner of Education
1915 Clarence A. Barbour, D.D.[2] Reverend and President of Rochester Theological Seminary
1916 Samuel P. Orth[2] Professor of Political Science at Cornell University
1917 George Frederick Williams[2] Rector at St. Mary's on the Hill, Buffalo, NY
1918 Wm. R. Taylor, D.D.[2] Pastor at Brick Presbyterian Church
1919 Henry Turner Bailey[2] Director of Cleveland School of Art
1920 Thomas F. Moran, Ph.D.[2] Professor of History and Economics at Purdue University
1921 Arthur E. Bestor, L.L.D.[2] President of Chautauqua Institution
1922 Charles R. Mann[2] Chariman of the Advisory Board of the General Staff of the U.S. War Department
1923 Elon Huntington Hooker[2]
1924 Samuel P. Capen, M.A., Ph.D, L.H.D., LL.D.[2] Chancellor of the University of Buffalo
1925 Charles E. Hewitt, Sc.B., M.M.E, Sc.D.[2]
1926 Clarence A. Barbour, D.D.[2]
1927 Robert I. Rees[2] General and Assistant Vice President of NY Telegraph & Telephone Co.
1928 Chas R. Gow[2] Trustee of Franklin Foundation in Boston, MA and Past President of Massachusetts Associated Industries
1929 Robert M. Searle[2] President of the Rochester Gas & Electric Corporation
1930 Frank P. Graves[2] Commissioner of Education of the State of New York
1931 Newton D. Baker[2] Politician, Mayor of Cleveland, OH, and U.S. Secretary of War
1932 James W. Wadsworth, Jr.[2] U.S. Senator and Representative
1933 John A. Randall[2]
1934 William F. Russel[2] Dean of Teachers College, Columbia University
1935 Charles Stanton[2] Mayor of the City of Rochester
1935 Herbert S. West[2] Trustee of University of Rochester
1936 John A. Randall[2] President of Mechanics Institute
1937 Rush Rhees[2] President Emeritus of University of Rochester
1938 Edwin A. Lee[2] Director of National Occupational Conference
1939 James W. Brown[2] Publisher of "Editor and Publisher"
1940 James Shelby Thomas[2] President of Clarkson College of Technology
1941 Peter Marshall[2] New York Avenue Presbyterian Church, Washington, D.C.
1942 John L. Train[2] President of Utica Mutual Insurance Company
1943 George Barton Cutten[2] President and pro tempore of Colgate-Rochester Divinity School
1944 Ruth M. Leach[2] Vice President of International Business Machines Corporation
1945 George D. Stoddard[2] President of the University of Illinois and Commissioner of Education of the State of New York
1946 Ira Mosher[2] Chairman of the Board of the National Association of Manufacturers and Chairman of the National Industrial Council
1947 Erwin H. Schell[2] Dean of Business Administration of Massachusetts Institute of Technology
1948 Edward Weeks[2] Editor of The Atlantic Monthly Magazine
1949 Harry J. Kllinger[2] Vice President of General Motors Corporation and General Manager of Pontiac Motor Division
1950 B. M. McKelway[2] Editor of Washington Star, Washington, D.C.
1951 T. Keith Glennan[2] President of Case Institute of Technology, Cleveland, Ohio and Member of Atomic Energy Commission
1952 Charles F. McCahill[2] General Manager of "Cleveland News," Cleveland, Ohio and President of the American Newspaper Publishers Association
1953 C. E. Kenneth Mees[2] Vice President of Eastman Kodak Company
1954 Edward A. Weeks, Jr.[2] Editor of The Atlantic Monthly Magazine
1955 John R. Dunning[2] Dean of Engineering at Columbia University
1956 John S. Coleman[2] President of Burroughs Corporation and President of U. S. Chamber of Commerce
1957 Carlos P. Romulo[2] General and Philippine Ambassador to the United States
1958 Alton L. Blakeslee[2] Reporter for the Associated Press Science
1959 Leston P. Faneuf[2] Chairman of the Board and President of Bell Aircraft Corporation
1960 Charles E. Irvin[2] Management Consultant of General Motors Corporation
1961 James H. Robinson[2] Minister of the Church of the Master, New York City and Director of Operation Crossroads Africa, and Pilot for the Peace Corps
1962 Edward Teller[2] Professor of Physics at Large at University of California and Associate Director of Lawrence Radiation Laboratory, University of California
1963 Kenneth B. Keating[2] U.S. Senator
1964 Walter H. Judd[2] Former Congressman for State of Minnesota
1965 Leonard Carmichael[2] Vice President for Research and Exploration at National Geographic Society
1966 Carl T. Rowan[2] Syndicated Columnist and Author, Former Ambassador to Finland, and Former Director of U.S. Information Agency
1967 Chet Huntley[2] News Analyst and Commentator for National Broadcasting Company
1968 Erwin Canhem[2] Editor in Chief of The Christian Science Monitor
1969 Wernher von Braun[2] Director of George C. Marshall Space Flight Center
1970 Stewart L. Udall[2] Visiting Professor of Environmental Humanism at Yale University
1971 Sidney P. Marland[2] U.S. Commissioner of Education
1972 Pauline Frederick[2] United Nations Correspondent for National Broadcasting Company (TV and Radio)
1973 - 1994[2] Several different ceremonies split by colleges. No RAMI/RIT commencement speakers
1995 Thomas Curley, MBA[2] RIT Alumnus '77 and Publisher of USA Today
1996 June Scobee Rodgers[3][4] Founding chair of the Challenger Center for Space Science Education, Member of Board of Trustees May 24
1997 George H.W. Bush[5] 41st President of the United States
1998 Bruce James[6] Retired founder, chairman,and CEO of Barclays Law Publishers and 1964 RIT alumnus
1999 Charles Schumer[7] Senator of New York May 21
2000 Richard Riley[8] U.S. Secretary of Education May 19
2001 Russell Bessette[9] Executive director of the New York State Office of Science, Technology and Academic Research (NYSTAR) May 25
2002 George Tenet[10] Director of Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) May 24
2003 Charles Schumer[11] Senator of New York May 23
2004 Anne Mulcahy[12] Chairman and CEO of Xerox Corporation May 21
2005 Daniel Inouye[13] Senator of Hawaii May 20
2006 Dean Kamen[14] Entrepreneur and inventor of Segway May 26
2007 William Jefferson Clinton[15] 42nd President of the United States May 25
2008 Stanley McKenzie[16] Former RIT Provost May 23
2009 Ursula Burns[17] President of Xerox Corporation May 22
2010 Bob Schieffer[18] CBS Newscaster May 21
2011 Brian Hinman[19] Entrepreneur May 20
2012 Bill Nye[20] Scientist and beloved TV personality May 25
2013 Alex Kipman[21] 2012 IPO Inventor of the Year, Microsoft Executive, Primary Inventor of Microsoft Kinect for Xbox 360 and Windows May 17
2014 William Daniel Phillips, Ph.D[22] National Institute of Standards and Technology researcher, Nobel Laureate, physics professor May 23
2015 Maj. Gen. Charles Frank Bolden, Jr.[23] [24] Administrator of NASA, 2006 US Astronaut Hall of Fame Inductee, commanding general of the 1st Marine Expeditionary Force Forward in support of Operation Desert Thunder in Kuwait, Former Marine Corps Naval Aviatior May 22


  1. Graduating to a top-rate commencement experience
  2. 2.00 2.01 2.02 2.03 2.04 2.05 2.06 2.07 2.08 2.09 2.10 2.11 2.12 2.13 2.14 2.15 2.16 2.17 2.18 2.19 2.20 2.21 2.22 2.23 2.24 2.25 2.26 2.27 2.28 2.29 2.30 2.31 2.32 2.33 2.34 2.35 2.36 2.37 2.38 2.39 2.40 2.41 2.42 2.43 2.44 2.45 2.46 2.47 2.48 2.49 2.50 2.51 2.52 2.53 2.54 2.55 2.56 2.57 2.58 2.59 2.60 2.61 2.62 2.63 2.64 2.65 2.66 2.67 2.68 2.69 2.70 2.71 2.72 2.73 Email from Jody Sidlauskas, Associate Archivist of RIT, February 16, 2012
  3. June Scobee Rodgers to speak at Commencement, May 24
  4. June Scobee Rodgers to keynote Convocation
  5. Former President Bush to be honored
  6. 1998 Annual Appreciation Report
  7. RIT sparks inventors' ideas
  8. RIT grads take center stage in May 19-20 ceremonies
  9. RIT Graduation Festivities Feature Technology Leader
  10. George J. Tenet to speak at RIT commencement
  11. Sen. Chuck Schumer to deliver RIT commencement address
  12. Xerox CEO Mulcahy to give commencement address
  13. RIT Welcomes Hawaiian Senator As 2005 Commencement Speaker
  14. Kamen to address graduates May 26
  15. Clinton Delivers Academic Convocation Address
  16. RIT celebrates class of 2008
  17. Ursula Burns Inspires RIT Graduates to Strive for the ‘Unimaginable’
  18. Newsman Bob Schieffer to deliver 2010 graduation address
  19. Hinman offers keynote commencement address
  20. Bill Nye to Offer Keynote Address at 2012 RIT Commencement
  21. Microsoft executive Alex Kipman to give commencement address
  22. Nobel Laureate William Daniel Phillips to give 2014 RIT commencement address
  23. 2015 Commencement Speaker
  24. NASA head Charles Bolden to be RIT commencement speaker

This article is a stub. Ritchie will smile if you expand it.