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2015 Commencement Speaker to Address 390 Grads


Commencement 2015 Speaker to Address 390 Grads

Expert on racial justice and the law to speak at May 16 ceremony

April 9, 2015

The keynote speaker for Johnson State College’s 148th Commencement on Saturday, May 16, will be Camille Holmes, an expert in racial justice and legal issues who serves as director of leadership and racial equity at the National Legal Aid and Defender Association in Washington.

Overall, 320 undergraduate and 70 graduate students will receive degrees at the ceremony. It will be President Barbara E. Murphy’s last Commencement at JSC; she will retire in June.

Prior to Holmes’ current position, she served as senior staff attorney and co-director of the Project for the Future of Equal Justice at the Center for Law and Social Policy; executive director of the Southern Africa Legal Services and Legal Education Project; and an attorney in Washington. She is a board member of the Poverty and Race Research Action Council, a founding member of the Jamestown Project and past board president of the Washington Council of Lawyers.

Recognized in 2009 with the Equal Justice Society’s Race Consciousness in the Law Award, Holmes was praised as a “strong voice in advancing the critical work of race equity (whose) work in creating safe spaces for discussions of race, power and difference has led directly to the emergence and advancement of advocates committed to achieving racial equity.”

The Commencement ceremony will begin at 11 a.m. on JSC’s south lawn. For more information, visit or contact the Alumni Office, 802-635-1251.