Reminder: Class Day Speaker Announced Today

Written by

Don’t forget that this year’s class day speaker will be announced today at 12:30 on Low Plaza. That’s in one hour, folks. Place your final bets and cross your fingers.

UPDATE (12:38 PM): As rumored yesterday, the CC Class Day speaker will be Attorney General Eric Holder, CC ’73, Law ’76.

UPDATE (1:35 PM): We’ve got pictures of the momentous announcement and Columbia’s press release.

CC ’09 Student Council engages in a group huddle to prepare themselves for delivering the news. Lunch-eating passersby don’t know what’s about to hit them.


The Announcement is made. Holder’s achievement of becoming the first African-American attorney general receives praise.


And then, with a brief “Thanks to all our adoring masses,” it was over. But to be fair, Student Council has midterms, too.



Columbia’s press release:

Attorney General Eric Holder Will Be

Columbia College Class Day Speaker

NEW YORK, March 10, 2009 – Columbia College has announced that U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, an alumnus of both Columbia College and Law School, will serve as its speaker for Class Day, the annual ceremony honoring graduating seniors. This year’s ceremony takes place on Tuesday, May 19, on the South Lawn of Columbia’s Morningside Heights campus.

“Columbians are rightly proud to count both the President of the United States and his Attorney General among our graduates,” said Columbia President Lee C. Bollinger. “Eric Holder has been a loyal and active alumnus of both our College and Law School whose impressive career exemplifies the civic values and commitment to public service that we hope to nurture in our students across all professional fields and academic disciplines. We look forward to welcoming him back.”

After being sworn in as attorney general last month, Holder (CC’73, Law’76) became the second consecutive Columbia graduate to serve in that cabinet post, succeeding Michael Mukasey (CC’63). He served as a Columbia University trustee from March 2007 until his confirmation.

“Eric Holder has stayed closely connected to the College and to his classmates while building an outstanding career serving the public good,” said Dean Austin Quigley, dean of Columbia College. “He is a fine example to all of our students and his remarks at the 2009 Class Day will make the occasion especially memorable for our graduating seniors and their families.”

After his graduation from Columbia College and Law School, Holder joined the Department of Justice’s newly-formed Public Integrity Section, where he investigated and prosecuted corruption involving officials in local, state and federal government. In 1988, President Ronald Reagan appointed Holder to serve as an associate judge of the Superior Court of the District of Columbia, where he presided over hundreds of criminal and civil trials during his five years on the bench.

In 1993, President Bill Clinton appointed Holder to serve as the United States Attorney for the District of Columbia. In 1997, Clinton appointed Holder to serve as deputy attorney general of the United States, a position that he held until the end of the Clinton administration. Over the course of his career, Holder has earned a reputation as a staunch champion of civil rights.




  1. CCSC 2009

    To clarify, That would be the Columbia College Class Day Speaker

  2. It's going to be

    Felipe Tarud

  3. hell yeah  

    columbia pwnz all ivy speakerz

  4. yay  

    couldn't've been better unless we had the president himself :)

  5. This

    Just makes me feel worse for '08.

  6. Late:  

    *laugh* pictures? Don't lie, Bwog, you totally got the council to pose again when you showed up late.

  7. Goddammit!  

    I had my fingers crossed for Maggie Gyllenhaal!

  8. !!!  

    The only thing that could possibly ruin class day is if Holder inexplicably decides to remove the glory that is his moustache. That thing will inspire thousands of Columbians to greatness.

  9. '12  

    That's amazing! I'm so jealous. I hope ours is equally awesome.

  10. CC 09  

    this is awesome. I mean, Obama would've been better, obviously. But no complaints here.

    • yeah  

      no complaints at all. it was pretty obvious that it was going to be Holder since he was a trustee and arguably pretty easy to get - but yeah, the only better option would have been Obama. But since the President doesn't even list himself as a CC grad in his bio on I wouldn't have expected him to accept an invitation.

  11. Anonymous  

    So, uh, when so we find out about the SEAS speaker?

  12. is class day

    open to everyone like Barnard's?

  13. someone who knows  

    for cc at least

    class day allows students pretty much unlimited capacity.

    commencement allows only 4 seats for guests per student

    and no one cares about seas anyway

  14. SEAS'10  

    Barnard's speaker is better

  15. correct  

    Anyone can go to class day because there's lots of space.

    University Commencement, on the other hand, is limited because they're trying to fit over 10,000 graduates and their guests onto campus.

  16. okkk  

    uh why is barnard's speaker better

  17. Meh Really

    I wouldn't say Barnard's is better. They are really about equal, although I think Hillary has a lot more recognition. All in all, thank you for finally getting it together on class day speaker, although I'm two years too late for that.

  18. This sucks  

    i voted for marcellus wiley

  19. you'd figure  

    if we couldn't get Obama, we could at least get him to sit down for a few minutes and record or video or something they could screen at Commencement.

  20. man  

    I love Hilldog as much as the next person, but she isn't the most pleasant-sounding, funny or interesting speaker, although I'm sure she has valuable insight to provide. Holder ftw! I'm just glad we did better than lol-Kleine.

  21. this was

    felsman's doing I suspect. Way to go!

  22. Yo...

    Obama didn't like Columbia. Get over it.

  23. are people excited

    because he is AG, or because of name recognition? Because Michael Mukasey came and spoke last semester, and barely anyone showed up...

  24. Errr  

    Nobody showed up to Mukasey because he was Bush's AG. Holder is legitimately awesome in his own right -- not a desperate replacement for Alberto Gonzales.

© 2006-2015 Blue and White Publishing Inc.