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May 17, 2004, Vol. 3, No. 9
Santa Clara University

Community activist priest and Silicon Valley executive are featured commencement speakers 

June ceremonies also will award honorary degrees

Gregory Boyle. S.J.
Fr. Boyle 

The 153rd Santa Clara University Commencement ceremonies for undergraduate and graduate programs on June 11 and 12 will feature speeches by a community activist priest and by a Silicon Valley executive.

Gregory J. Boyle, S.J., who works with youth gangs in Los Angeles, will speak at the Saturday morning, June 12, undergraduate commencement in Buck Shaw Stadium.

Approximately 1,200 undergraduate degrees will be conferred from the College of Arts and Sciences and the schools of engineering and business.

Willem “Wim” Roelandts, a former Hewlett-Packard executive in his native Belgium and current CEO of Xilinx, will speak at the evening graduate commencement Friday, June 11, in the Leavey Center.

It will be the first commencement in the remodeled athletics arena. Boyle will be awarded an honorary Doctor of Faith and Justice degree at the 8:30 a.m. undergraduate ceremonies on June 12.

Also at the undergraduate commencement, former professional football player Ronnie Lott will receive an honorary Doctor of Public Service, and Sister Barbara Flannery, CSJ, will receive an honorary Doctor of Religious Education.

Wim Roelandts
W. Roelandts 
At the Friday graduate schools’ 7:30 p.m. ceremonies, Roelandts will receive an honorary Doctor of Engineering degree prior to his speech. Graduate degrees will be conferred in the schools of Business, Engineering, and Education, Counseling Psychology and Pastoral Ministries.


Boyle is the founder and executive director of two programs, the Jobs For a Future employment referral center, and the Homeboy Industries economic development program, that serve at-risk and gang-involved youth in the Los Angeles area. The Los Angeles native received bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Gonzaga University and master’s degrees from Loyola Marymount, the Weston School of Theology, and the Jesuit School of Theology.

A former high school teacher, he was a prison chaplain in Mexico and Folsom, Calif., and pastor of the Dolores Mission. He is a nationally renowned speaker at conferences for teachers, social workers and criminal justice workers, stressing the importance of adult attention, guidance and unconditional love in preventing youth from joining gangs.

Wim Roelandts

Roelandts has been CEO of Xilinx since 1996. Prior to Xilinx, he spent 30 years at Hewlett-Packard starting as a service engineer in his native Belgium and ending his career there as a senior vice president in charge of the company’s $6 billion computer systems business. Roelandts is on the boards of the Semiconductor Industry Association; the Fabless Semiconductor Association; and Santa Clara University’s Center for Science, Technology, and Society. He also helps raise awareness and funding for a host of community causes.

Barbara Flannery, CSJ

Flannery is a member of the Sisters of Saint Joseph of Carondelet and has been Chancellor of the Catholic Diocese of Oakland since 1994. With her leadership, the Oakland Diocese has become a model for how the church can help victims and those priests who are accused of sexual abuses.

As an outgrowth of meeting many victims of clergy sexual abuse, Flannery helped develop the Ministry for Survivors of Clergy Sexual Abuse, which has planned a campaign titled “No More Secrets” encouraging victims of clergy sex abuse to come forward.

Ronnie Lott

Lott is best known as a Hall of Fame football player, but he also has been a leader in community service. His 14-year NFL career culminated in his induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. In 1989, he founded All Stars Helping Kids, a non-profit organization which helps disadvantaged youth in the Bay Area. The organization created an All Stars Technology Room and children’s garden at UCSF Children’s Hospital. In 2001, Lott founded Olympius Capital, a minority-controlled firm committed to enhancing diversity in the financial services industry.

In 2002, Lott was selected to join The Guardsmen, a service organization of business and professional members devoted to advancing at-risk Bay Area youth by funding indoor and outdoor educational programs. He is a graduate of the University of Southern California.

Larry Sonsini

Law graduation May 22

Speaker is Larry Sonsini

Larry Sonsini, prominent Silicon Valley lawyer and member of the SCU Board of Trustees, will speak at the School of Law Commencement, 10:30 a.m. on May 22 in the Mission Gardens. He also will receive an honorary degree.

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