Professor of the Year and award-winning board member to speak at UST commencement ceremonies Dec. 16

The University of St. Thomas’ Professor of the Year and an award-winning member of its board of trustees will address graduating students and their guests at St. Thomas’ winter commencement ceremonies on Friday, Dec. 16.

  • At baccalaureate ceremonies: Dr. Bernard Brady, named the university’s 2005 Professor of the Year in March and a member of St. Thomas’ theology faculty for the past 15 years, will speak at the baccalaureate ceremonies at 3 p.m. in Coughlan Field House.

A Cleveland, Ohio, native, Brady received his bachelor’s in theology and psychology at Loyola University of Chicago. He went on to earn his master’s in divinity, and doctorate in ethics, at the University of Chicago Divinity School. He taught theology at Loyola and the College of St. Catherine before coming to St. Thomas in 1989. He is the author of The Moral Bond of Community: Justice and Discourse in Christian Morality (Georgetown University Press 1998) and Christian Love: How Christians Through the Ages Have Understood Love (Georgetown University Press, 2003), and co-author with St. Thomas journalism professor Dr. Mark Neuzil of A Spiritual Field Guide: Meditations for the Open Air (Brazo Press, 2005). Active with committee and professional organizations on and off campus, he has been a board member and president of the Children’s Program of Northern Ireland, served on the city of St. Paul Ethical Practices Board and on the board of the Charities Review Council of Minnesota. He also has coached grade-school soccer teams for more than a dozen years.

  • At graduate ceremonies: Lee Anderson, who is a member of the university’s board of trustees as well as its School of Law board of governors, will speak at graduate commencement ceremonies at 7 p.m. in Coughlan Field House. He also will receive an honorary doctor of laws degree for his “outstanding business acumen and inspirational leadership.”

Anderson received St. Thomas’ 2002 John F. Cade Award for entrepreneurial excellence. For more than 40 years he has led Roseville-based APi Group, which has grown into a $750 million holding corporation of more than two dozen construction, manufacturing and fire-protection companies. They employ 5,000 in offices, plants and warehouses in the United States, Canada and Great Britain. Anderson and his wife, Penny, established an endowment to provide scholarships for international students to attend St. Thomas, with an emphasis on those from Cuba and other Caribbean nations.

Retiring St. Thomas faculty member Dr. Frederick Zimmerman also will be honored at the graduate ceremonies. He will be presented the university’s Distinguished Service Award. Zimmerman, 70, has taught manufacturing systems engineering and international business at St. Thomas. Prior to joining the faculty full time in 1985, he spent more than 25 years in industry as an engineer (IBM), manager (Control Data), vice president (National Computer Systems) and president (Computool, an NCS affiliate). He earned a Ph.D. in strategic management and organizational studies from the University of Minnesota in 1987. To his credit are two highly praised books, The Turnaround Experience: Real-World Lessons in Revitalizing Corporations (McGraw-Hill, 1991) and Manufacturing Works: The Vital Link Between Production and Prosperity (co-written with Dave Beal, published by Dearborn Trade Press, 2002). He also writes regularly about manufacturing and the economy, leadership and labor issues for a variety of publications. His common-sense, no-nonsense approach to business issues, often laced with self-deprecating humor, has endeared him to colleagues and students alike.

The university will award 217 bachelor’s degrees at the undergraduate commencement exercises and 548 graduate degrees (master’s, doctoral and education specialist) at the graduate ceremonies. The ceremonies will be preceded by a Commencement Mass at 1:30 p.m. in the university’s Chapel of St. Thomas Aquinas. Receptions for graduates and their families will follow each commencement ceremony.