CNN foreign correspondent

Amanpour will deliver 1997

commencement address

A journalist renowned for her efforts in focusing global attention on tragedies that otherwise might have been overlooked has accepted an invitation to deliver Emory's 1997 commencement address.

Christiane Amanpour, chief international correspondent for the Cable News Network (CNN), also will receive an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree during the May 12 commencement exercises, in addition to delivering her address.

Named CNN foreign correspondent in 1989, Amanpour was among the first to report on the Romanian revolution and the plight of Romanian children crowded into orphanages with substandard living conditions. She has been a leader among her colleagues in reporting on the Persian Gulf war, the break-up and subsequent fighting in the former Yugoslavia, the tensions in Haiti prior to U.S. intervention and the launching of Operation Restore Hope in Somalia.

"I trust that the Class of 1997, as well as assembled parents, friends, faculty and staff colleagues, will welcome Christiane Amanpour to our commencement exercises this year," said President Bill Chace. "She has been, for CNN and for 60 Minutes, one of the best guides we now have to the rougher and more turbulent world we will all soon enter. What she has seen we soon will have to know. As journalist, commentator and guide, she can help the Class of 1997 interpret the century it will inherit."

The daughter of an Iranian airline executive and his British wife, Amanpour was reared in privileged circumstances until the 1979 Iranian revolution, when her family fled the country leaving everything behind. While attending the University of Rhode Island, Amanpour supported herself by working in the news departments of a local radio station and a local NBC television affiliate. Following her graduation in 1983, she began working at CNN as a news assistant, the lowest job on the international news desk. Within a few years, she had risen to the position of producer-correspondent in CNN's New York bureau.

Dubbed by Time magazine as the most influential foreign correspondent since Edward R. Murrow, Amanpour has been noted for her indifference to her personal safety and her insight into the larger social contexts of the wars she has covered. For her reports from Bosnia-Herzegovina, Amanpour received an Emmy, the George Foster Peabody Award, the George Polk Award and the Courage in Journalism Award. She has helped CNN win two DuPont Awards, first for a four-week series on religious revolution and Iran, and later for coverage of the Bosnian conflict. Amanpour is a fellow of the Society of Professional Journalists.


Other honorary degree recipients include:

Joseph Rogers Hollingsworth '54C-'55G, professor of history and sociology at the University of Wisconsin, Doctor of Letters. Hollingsworth, who earned a Ph.D. in 1960 from the University of Chicago, has focused the majority of his scholarly work on institutional change within and across countries. His work has explored the questions of why particular institutional arrangements emerge and what consequences follow from specific institutional arrangements. In addition to studying the emergence of governance forms at the industrial sectoral level, he more recently has begun studying social policy, comparatively and historically.

Hollingsworth's book, The Consequences of State Intervention: The Medical Systems of Great Britain, France, Sweden and the United States, demonstrates how changes in privatization and state intervention have influenced the performance of medical systems in these four countries since 1890. The book received the Charles H. Levine Prize, awarded by the International Political Science Association for the best book in comparative public policy during 1990-91.

L. Bevel Jones III '46C-'49T, retired bishop of the United Methodist Church, Doctor of Divinity. Jones was elected to the Emory Board of Trustees in 1971 and served as vice-chairman of the board for 10 years until being elected trustee emeritus last November. He served as a member of The Carter Center Board of Trustees and on the search committee that brought President Bill Chace to Emory in 1994.

As general superintendent of one of the largest United Methodist annual conferences, Jones provided leadership and spiritual nurturing to 227,000 members in 1,154 churches. He is past-president of the North American Section of the World Methodist Council and of the General Commission on Communications of the United Methodist Church.

Jones has been particularly devoted to the Candler School of Theology, where he is now teaching church leadership.

Deen Day Smith, businesswoman and philanthropist, Doctor of Humane Letters. Smith's support of Atlanta's arts, educational and medical research organizations for more than two decades is legendary. As vice chairman and trustee of the Cecil B. Day Foundation, she has championed education and given generously to local schools and universities, including Emory. In addition to her support of the Rollins Research Center and the Baptist Studies Program, Smith established the Charles O. Smith Scholarship Foundation at Emory in honor of her late husband, a 1942 Emory College graduate.

In addition to her support of the Atlanta arts community, Smith also funded the Day Butterfly Center at Callaway Gardens. She has supported Habitat for Humanity and is one of the founders of The Carter Center; her gift made The Carter Center's Day Chapel a reality.

Known for her deep spiritual and religious beliefs, Smith has said that she sees her financial resources as a way to help others and thus serve God. She received the Georgia Philanthropist of the Year Award in 1983 and the Horatio Alger Award in 1993.

-Dan Treadaway

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