Kate DiCamillo

Kate DiCamillo Delivers Keynote Speech at Commencement

May 14, 2006

Acclaimed children’s book author Kate DiCamillo (above) was presented a University of Florida Distinguished Alumnus Award by President Bernie Machen during the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences’ spring commencement ceremony on May 6. The 1987 English graduate also served as keynote speaker.

DiCamillo won the top prize in children’s literature, the Newbery Medal, in 2004 for “The Tale of Despereaux: Being the Story of a Mouse, a Princess, Some Soup, and a Spool of Thread.” She also captured the Newbery Honor for her first book, “Because of Winn-Dixie,” just three years earlier.

More than 1,900 undergraduates received bachelor’s degrees from CLAS this spring, including a record-breaking 37 valedictorians. Outstanding graduates included CLAS Hall of Fame inductees Joseph Dieuvil, Jr., Joshua E. Kaller, Laura Brooke Rich, Edward “E.J.” Walicki, Eric Lansing White and Abu-Bakr Zafar—who were each recognized for their service to the college and university. 

Also honored for their outstanding leadership activities were the Outstanding Female and Male Leaders: Ashley Bittner, Yordanos Eyoel, Luis Suarez-Isaza, Christopher Andrew Roy and Eric Lansing White.

The following students were named UF Outstanding Scholars for maintaining a perfect 4.0 grade point average in addition to other awards, honors, research and activities: Sarah E. Ainsworth, Afra M. Alam, Jessica Pfeilsticker, David B. Rosenblum, Jennifer A. Wilkinson, Charlotte A. Williams, Jeffrey L. Wong and Abu-Bakr Zafar.

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Buffy Lockette

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