2006 Honorary Degree Recipients

Ray Anderson is the founder of Interface, Inc., one of the world’s largest interior furnishings companies. Interface is a leader in the green business movement. Anderson says he has embarked on a mission to make Interface “the first company that, by its deeds, shows the entire industrial world what sustainability is in all its dimensions: people, process, product, place, and profits.” Since making this commitment to sustainability, the company has reduced its environmental footprint significantly by redesigning processes and products, pioneering new technologies, and reducing or eliminating waste and harmful emissions while increasing the use of renewable materials and sources of energy. A graduate of the Georgia Institute of Technology with a degree in industrial engineering, Anderson lives in Atlanta.

David Botstein is a renowned geneticist and educator and director of the Lewis-Sigler Institute for Integrative Genomics, at Princeton University. His fundamental contributions to modern genetics include the discovery of many yeast and bacterial genes. In 1980, Botstein and three colleagues proposed a method for mapping genes that laid the groundwork for the Human Genome Project. A graduate of Harvard College who earned his doctorate from the University of Michigan, Botstein taught at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the Stanford University School of Medicine and was vice president for science at the Genentech company prior to joining the Princeton faculty in 2002.

Robert P. Moses was a Freedom Rider in the 1960s and is founder of The Algebra Project, an innovative program that teaches mathematics literacy to children to prepare them for higher education and success in life. Educated at Hamilton College and Harvard University, Moses taught mathematics at the Horace Mann School in New York from 1958 to 1961 before leaving to work full time in the civil rights movement with the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee. He was the main organizer of Freedom Summer, in 1964. He endured numerous beatings and incarcerations in the course of his work for civil rights. He earned his doctorate in philosophy from Harvard, was awarded a MacArthur Foundation “genius” grant in 1982, and founded The Algebra Project later in that decade. Moses teaches math at Lanier School in Jackson, Miss., and lives in Cambridge, Mass.

Jette and Alan Parker founded the Oak Philanthropies Ltd. and the Oak Foundation, both of Geneva, Switzerland. The Oak Foundation supports nonprofit organizations throughout the world and has made generous grants to the College to fund 10 scholarships for international students, to endow the Oak Chair in Biological Sciences, and to establish and support the Oak Institute for International Human Rights. The Parkers also founded the Parker Institute and Muscle Laboratory in 1999. The institute and laboratory focuses on neurological diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis and fibromyalgia and provides medical exams to more than 7,000 outpatients each year. Alan Parker is an international investor and was co-owner and CFO of Duty Free Shops International. He is a former Colby overseer. Jette Parker has served on the boards of the Rehabilitation and Research Center for Torture Victims and the International Rehabilitation Council for Torture Victims and as a Colby trustee. The Parkers’ son, Kristian, is a member of the Colby Class of 1994.

Anna Quindlen is a novelist and essayist. Over the last 30 years her work has appeared in leading American newspapers and magazines, including in columns in The New York Times (1981-1994) and Newsweek magazine, for which she continues to write the “Last Word.” She has written four best-selling novels, and a collection of her New York Times columns titled Thinking Out Loud was on the New York Times Best Seller List for more than three months in 1993. She joined The New York Times in 1977 as a general assignment reporter and was named the newspaper’s deputy metropolitan editor in 1983. She wrote the “About New York” column from 1981 to 1983 and created the “Life in the 80s” column in 1985. With the publication of her nonfiction book A Short Guide to a Happy Life, in 2000, she became the first writer to have books appear on the fiction, nonfiction, and self-help New York Times Best Seller lists. A graduate of Barnard College, she served as chair of Barnard’s board of trustees.

Paul J. Schupf is president of Paul J. Schupf Associates, a private investment firm in Hamilton, N.Y. Prior to founding his current business, he was employed by Steinhardt Partners. Schupf is a dedicated collector of art whose current collection includes major works by Francis Bacon, Jean Dubuffet, Ed Ruscha, Chuck Close, Richard Serra, and Alex Katz. He has donated paintings to numerous museums in Europe and America. In addition to his service on Colby’s Board of Trustees (1991-2006), he served as a member of the Board of Governors of the Colby College Museum of Art. Colby facilities that bear his name are the Paul J. Schupf Wing for the Works of Alex Katz, the Anthony-Mitchell-Schupf residence hall, the Schupf Scientific Computing Center, and the Paul J. Schupf Sculpture Court. He is a trustee emeritus of Colgate University, where he received a B.A. in 1958, and holds honorary doctorates from Thomas College and Cazenovia (N.Y.) College.

Commencement Contact

Colby College Logo