We are pleased to announce this year’s honorary degree recipients and commencement speakers:
We are thrilled to welcome former Boston Red Sox player David Ortiz. Affectionately known as Big Papi, David has established himself as one of the most prolific hitters of the last decade while becoming a fan favorite on and off the field. His heroics in ending the Red Sox World Series curse in 2004 and record-breaking MVP performance in the 2013 World Series have earned him legendary status as one of Boston’s greatest sports heroes. A ten-time All-Star and three-time World Series Champion, David is recognized as one of the greatest and most popular players of this era. David holds the all-time record for most hits and home runs by a designated hitter and became the 27th player in baseball history to join the 500 Home Run club. David’s tremendous reputation extends off the field with his establishment of the David Ortiz Children’s Fund. In recognition of his charitable work, David received the 2011 Roberto Clemente Award, one of baseball’s most prestigious honors. He now stars on FOX as an analyst to cover the MLB playoffs as well as has involvement in numerous business ventures. Known for his big personality and power at the plate, he is one of the most popular players to ever play the game.
Mayor Rivera grew up in Lawrence and went to Lawrence public schools. As a youth Mayor Rivera was a Boy Scout, a U.S. Air Force Auxiliary Civil Air Patrol Cadet, newspaper delivery boy for the Eagle Tribune and co-chair of LHS Model United Nations. He is the son of a single mother who emigrated from the Dominican Republic to find a better life for her family by working in area mills. As a proud first-generation American who worked his way through college, his story resonates with many of our students. Mayor Rivera was instrumental in bringing Regis to the Merrimack Valley and a big supporter for Regis North. When dangerous gas explosions unfolded in the City of Lawrence last fall, Mayor Rivera stood hand in hand with his citizens and provided exemplary leadership. He sought to bring safety and a sense of normalcy back to the region by working with state officials and demanding action from Columbia Gas. He has become an advocate for victims and a model for effective and compassionate crisis response.