Media Contact: Sari Krosinsky, (505) 277-1593,

May 10, 2010

UNM Commencement Set for May 15 at Tingley Coliseum

United States Senator Tom Udall will deliver the keynote address at the UNM spring commencement on Saturday, May 15, at 9 a.m. in Tingley Coliseum at Expo New Mexico (State Fairgrounds).

American Indian health and education advocate Agnes Dill, California Justice Cruz Reynoso and 1963-87 UNM University Architect Van Dorn Hooker will receive honorary degrees.

About 2,634 students are projected to receive degrees from UNM’s Albuquerque and Extended University campuses, as follows: 1,866 bachelor’s degrees, 441 master’s degrees, 67 doctorates, 91 juris doctorates, 74 medical doctorates, 78 pharmacy doctorates, 12 graduate certificates and five education specialists. An official degree count is determined following commencement.

At UNM-Gallup, 100 associate degrees and 23 certificates are projected to be awarded; at Los Alamos, 17 associate degrees and two certificates; at Taos, 17 associate degrees and 10 certificates; and at Valencia, 30 associate degrees and three certificates.

Golden Graduates, the class of 1960, are also honored at commencement for their lifelong connection to UNM.

Jason Hanson receives the Tom L. Popejoy Dissertation Prize for “The Economics of Urban Water Policy: Infrastructure, Scarcity, and Conservation.”

UNM Regents’ President Raymond Sanchez will greet graduates on behalf of the UNM board of regents. Sanchez and fellow regents, UNM administrators, deans and faculty are among the platform group. UNM Provost Suzanne Ortega is master of ceremonies, and University Secretary Vivian Valencia is chief marshal. Ortega will offer congratulatory remarks, confer degrees and recognize honors graduates.

Monika Roberts, president of the Associated Students of UNM, and Ruth Schifani, president of the Alumni Association, will greet students.

The University Band will play music for the ceremony’s prelude and processional. Tony Zancanella, graduating with a Bachelor of Music, will sing the national anthem and alma mater.

College, branch and departmental convocation ceremonies are scheduled May 12-15. For more information and the convocation schedule, visit


Tom Udall

Tom Udall is New Mexico’s 17th United States senator. He served for two decades as U.S. representative and New Mexico attorney general. He earned a Juris Doctor from UNM in 1977. In Congress, Udall has been a champion of renewable energy, job creation, reducing global warming emissions, expanding preventive health care, broadband deployment, consumer protection, Native American economic, health and education development, and government reform.

Agnes Dill

Agnes Dill, Isleta and Laguna Pueblos, has been a pioneer on issues in American Indian health care, culture, history, education and women’s rights for more than 70 years. Dill was a teacher with the Bureau of Indian Affairs in Oklahoma and New Mexico for 12 years. On the New Mexico Geriatric Education Center’s Council of Elders, Dill has been an advocate for access to quality, culturally-sensitive health care.

Cruz Reynoso

Justice Cruz Reynoso is the Boochever and Bird professor of law emeritus at the University of California, Davis School of Law, where he holds the chair for the Study and Teaching of Freedom and Equality. Reynoso has served the California Fair Employment Practice Commission, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, California Rural Legal Assistance, UNM School of Law, California Court of Appeals and California Supreme Court.

Van Dorn Hooker

Van Dorn Hooker was university architect at UNM, 1963-87. He directed building and planning for the Albuquerque campuses and three branch campuses: Gallup, Los Alamos and Valencia County. During Hooker’s time at UNM, enrollment more than doubled and square footage of buildings quadrupled. The School of Medicine, Research Park, The Pit, Championship Golf Course and duck pond were established, and the School of Law moved to north campus.


The University of New Mexico is the state's largest university, serving more than 32,000 students. UNM is home to the state's only schools of law, medicine, pharmacy and architecture and operates New Mexico's only academic health center. UNM is noted for comprehensive undergraduate programs and research that benefits the state and the nation.