Villanova, Pa. – Villanova University School of Law (VLS) Dean John Y. Gotanda announced that Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett will address the Class of 2013 as the School’s commencement speaker. Governor Corbett will also receive the Medallion Award in recognition of his achievements. Two distinguished alumni—Martin G. McGuinn ’67 VLS and Patrick J. O’Connor ’67 VLS—will each receive a Doctor of Laws (LL.D.) as part of the ceremony. Commencement will be held at 11 a.m. on Friday, May 17 in The Pavilion on the campus of Villanova University.
Tom Corbett was inaugurated as the 46th Governor of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania on January 18, 2011. A life-long Pennsylvania resident, Mr. Corbett has a long and distinguished career serving the citizens of the Commonwealth as Assistant U.S. Attorney, U.S. Attorney, Chair of the Pennsylvania Commission of Crime and Delinquency, Pennsylvania Attorney General and now as Governor.
Mr. Corbett was appointed to chair the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency, shaping criminal justice policy and working to improve drug and alcohol prevention and rehabilitation programs across the state. In 1995, he was nominated by Governor Tom Ridge to fill the unexpired term of Attorney General and served in this role until 1997. Mr. Corbett subsequently joined Waste Management as its Assistant General Counsel for Government Affairs and later formed his own law firm, Thomas Corbett and Associates, in 2002. He was elected as Pennsylvania Attorney General in 2004 and 2008.
In the early 1980s, Mr. Corbett served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Pennsylvania, specializing in the prosecution of organized crime and drug offenses. He was also named as one of the first members of President Ronald Reagan's National Drug Task Force. Following several years of private law practice, Mr. Corbett was appointed by President George H. W. Bush to serve as U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Pennsylvania. He is a graduate of Lebanon Valley College and St. Mary’s University School of Law.
Honorary Degree Recipients
Martin G. McGuinn’67 VLS retired in 2006 as chairman and chief executive officer of the former Mellon Financial Corporation, now The Bank of New York Mellon. Under Mr. McGuinn’s leadership, Mellon narrowed its strategic focus and transformed from a broad-based commercial bank to a global leader in asset management and asset servicing.
In September 2002, Mr. McGuinn was appointed by President George W. Bush to the National Infrastructure Advisory Council, which made recommendations to the President regarding the security of the country’s cyber and information systems. He is a director of several corporations and non-profits, including iGate Corporation, The Chubb Corporation, Celanese Corporation, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, and Carnegie Museums of Pittsburgh.
A Philadelphia native, Mr. McGuinn completed his undergraduate studies at Villanova University in 1964. He is the recipient of Villanova University School of Law’s Medallion Award and a Life Member and former chairman of its Board of Consultors.
Patrick J. O´Connor ’67 VLS is vice chairman of Cozen O´Connor, which is ranked among the 100 largest law firms in the United States. He is a trial lawyer who focuses his practice on litigation of contracts, banking matters, estates, health care, and aviation-related claims. Prior to joining the firm in 1973, he served as law clerk to the Hon. Thomas J. Clary, chief judge of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, and was an associate attorney at Pepper Hamilton & Scheetz.
Mr. O’Connor serves as chairman of the boards of BNY Mellon Funds Trusts and Franklin Security Bank; he is also a member of the board of Crowley Chemical Company of New York City, a Fellow in the American College of Trial Lawyers and a Fellow in the International Academy College of Trial Lawyers.
His educational affiliations include serving as a Life Member and former chairman of the Board of Consultors for Villanova University School of Law and as chairman of the board of trustees of Temple University. In 2002, he was honored with the Gerald Abraham Alumni Association Award for Service by the Villanova Law Alumni Association. Mr. O’Connor is a magna cum laude graduate of King’s College.
Since 1842, Villanova University’s Augustinian Catholic intellectual tradition has been the cornerstone of an academic community in which students learn to think critically, act compassionately and succeed while serving others. Founded in 1953, Villanova University School of Law is rooted in academic excellence, academic freedom, inclusion and respect for human dignity. The Law School, which is accredited by the American Bar Association, provides broad-based legal education, and its award-winning clinics and Lawyering Together Program provide free legal aid to those in need.
Notable alumni include Hon. Kelly Ayotte (U.S. Senator, New Hampshire); David C. Chavern (Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, U.S. Chamber of Commerce); Michael R. Haswell (Head of Business Development, Commerce, Google Inc.); Jeffrey S. Moorad (Chairman/CEO, Moorad Sports Partners); Hon. Edward Rendell (Former Governor of Pennsylvania); Hon. Marjorie Rendell (Judge, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit); Joseph T. Sebastianelli (President and CEO, Jefferson Health Systems); and Richard Trumka (President, AFL-CIO).