Columbia University has announced it will award an honorary degree to Patrick Gaspard, who has served as former executive director of the Democratic National Committee, director of the White House Office of Political Affairs, and U.S. ambassador to South Africa under President Barack Obama.
Gaspard — now president of the Open Society Foundations, an international philanthropy founded by billionaire George Soros to financially support civil society groups around the world — is one of five people who will receive the degree in May.
Born in the Congo to Haitian parents, Gaspard moved with his parents to the U.S. at the age of 3 and attended Brooklyn Technical High School and Columbia University.
Others to be feted, according to The Columbia Spectator, are:
- Elizabeth Diller, an architectural design professor whose studio designed New York City’s High Line park and led the reconstruction of Lincoln Center.
- Lynn Sykes, a primary contributor to both the original proposal and development of plate tectonic theory, and a Higgins Professor Emeritus of Earth and Environmental Sciences at Columbia’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory.
- Thelma Golden, director and chief curator of the Studio Museum in Harlem, who is known for her curatorial work in the Whitney Museum of American Art.
- Bradley Efron, a statistics professor at Stanford University, who has made notable contributions to the field of statistics, including a proposal for the first computer-driven technique that allowed for data simulations.
The degrees are awarded to individuals who have had significant accomplishments in a variety of fields.
© 2023 Newsmax. All rights reserved.