HERBERT BLOCK. For more than four decades, the Herblock signature has been a mark of excellence in national journalism, making the nation smile while stirring its conscience. Your mastery of humor and satire, often uncannily prophetic, has multiplied the force and credibility of political cartooning as you unfailingly distill the essence of issues that would take your writing colleagues columns to convey. You have observed well, but you have also warned as you originated the very word “McCarthyism,” created the famous A-Bomb character as the portrait of the dangers of nuclear war, and foretold of a Khomeini dictatorship in Iran. You delighted us with your formulation of Block’s Law: “If it’s good, they’ll stop making it.“ Your nine books have been highly praised for both text and drawings, and your three Pulitzer Prizes attest to the high regard with which you are held in your profession, further demonstrated by the distinction of being the only living cartoonist whose work appears in the National Gallery of Art. You have been honored repeatedly not only for the mastery of your profession but, more importantly, for the impact your work has had upon the nation’s great causes of human rights and individual freedoms.
Colby and your colleagues are proud to salute you as the 34th Lovejoy Fellow and the first political cartoonist to join that group of distinguished journalists.
By the authority of the Board of Trustees of Colby College, I confer upon you, HERBERT BLOCK, the degree of Doctor of Laws, honoris causa. The hood with which you have been invested and this diploma which I place in your hand are the visible symbols of your membership in this society of scholars, to all the rights and privileges of which I declare you entitled.
Conferred November 7, 1986