Commencement Speaker & Honorands

Scott Jackson ’80
Doctor of Humane Letters
Commencement Speaker

Scott Jackson’80 is Vice President of PATH, one of the largest global health nonprofit organizations in the world.  Building active, sustainable, culturally relevant community solutions for global health challenges in more than 70 countries, PATH (formerly known as Program for Appropriate Technology in Health) is the recipient of many prestigious awards, including the 2009 Conrad N. Hilton Humanitarian Prize for extraordinary contributions toward alleviating human suffering.  Mr. Jackson represents the organization and its mission internationally, focusing on developing and strengthening collaborative relationships with global health partners and donors.

In addition to his critical role with PATH, Mr. Jackson is active in Rotary International, serves on several national boards, and was a founding member of the management committee for ONE, the campaign to make poverty history.   Scott’s business acumen was honed in marketing and communications, public affairs, and business consulting firms.  Prior to his current position he served as senior vice president for World Vision U.S., the highly regarded international humanitarian organization now at work in more than 100 countries.  Among his accomplishments at World Vision, Mr. Jackson oversaw the successful HIV/AIDS advocacy and fundraising “Hope Initiative” tour to 18 cities across the U.S.  Before joining World Vision, Jackson was president of two public affairs and marketing companies, APCO Seattle and TRADEC Trade and Development Consortium.

A magna cum laude graduate of Puget Sound, Mr. Jackson served as vice president and then as president of the Associated Students of the University of Puget Sound (ASUPS).  In recognition of his influence on campus, ASUPS established several years ago the Scott Jackson Outstanding Man Award for inspiration, leadership, and exemplary contributions to the community.  After graduation, Mr. Jackson earned an MBA as a Rotary Scholar at the University of Edinburgh and completed a program in organizational development at Harvard Business School. He continued his service to Puget Sound beyond graduation, as an active alumni volunteer. Mr. Jackson’s personal and professional career has consistently exemplified a commitment to compassionate human service, global commitment, and transformative action through creative collaboration.


Preston L. Singletary
Doctor of Arts

Preston Singletary is one of the most distinguished and original artists working in the medium of glass today.  Based in Seattle, Mr. Singletary combines in his work the designs of his Tlingit and Philippine ancestry with the glass art form emblematic of the Pacific Northwest, creating a distinctive vision of the heart and soul of the American Northwest’s cultural and artistic traditions.

Mr. Singletary grew up hearing his family’s traditional tribal stories, many of which provide inspiration for his work. The mastery of design and fabrication evident in so many of his pieces was acquired through study and collaboration with other prominent Northwest Coastal artists.  A graduate of the Pilchuck Glass School, Singletary entered the world of glassblowing as an assistant, mastering the techniques of the European tradition as he worked alongside Seattle-area and Italian masters.  He now serves as a trustee of Pilchuck and of the Seattle Art Museum.

As demonstrated in his acclaimed mid-career retrospective that debuted at Tacoma’s Museum of Glass in 2009 at the commencement of a national tour, Mr. Singletary has created a unique and powerful body of work that depicts cultural and historical images in richly detailed, beautifully hued glass.  He has translated the patterns, narratives, and systems of Native woodcarving, weaving, and painted art into a new visual vocabulary in glass, a material historically associated with Native peoples through an extensive network of trading routes.

Mr. Singletary has been the recipient of numerous honors and awards for his artistry. His works are included in museum collections world-wide, including the National Museum of the American Indian, the Museum of Fine Arts (Boston), the Brooklyn Museum of Art, the Seattle Art Museum, the Corning Museum of Glass (Corning, NY), the Mint Museum of Art and Design (Charlotte, NC), the Heard Museum (Phoenix), and the Handelsbanken (Stockholm, Sweden).  Preston Singletary’s work and life embody the values of a liberal education:  an inquisitive mind, an experimental impulse, a creative fire, and a spirit of collaboration and cross-cultural communication.


James T. Wilcox ’59
Barrie F. Wilcox ’62

Doctors of Business

Brothers Jim and Barrie Wilcox represent the third generation of leaders at Wilcox Farms Inc., the century-old family company based in Roy, Washington.  Under their leadership, Wilcox Farms has grown from humble origins to become a model of ethically informed and sustainable business practices and responsible stewardship of natural resources. 

Wilcox Farms was founded in 1909 by Judson and Elizabeth Wilcox.  Raised on a small subsistence farm near Toronto, Judson struck out for adventure in the Northwest at the turn of the century, trying his hand first at gold panning in Alaska, then opening a hat shop in Seattle, and ultimately acquiring the 240-acre spread in Roy that is now Wilcox Farms.  Grandsons Jim and Barrie assumed leadership of and expanded the business in the 1960s after they both attended the College of Puget Sound and Jim completed three years in the Air Force.

In recent years Wilcox Farms has earned wide recognition for a record of visionary business leadership.  In 2009 the family business celebrated its centennial and was honored by the Food Alliance for the company’s distinct leadership in socially and environmentally responsible agricultural practices, attention to safe and fair working conditions, and humane treatment of animals. The Wilcox company was also recently certified as “Salmon-Safe” by Stewardship Partners, a Seattle-based nonprofit group that works with landowners to protect and restore salmon-bearing streams.

In the June 2006 edition of Washington CEO, executive director Justin Hall of the nonprofit Nisqually River Foundation, stated, “From improved salmon habitat to changes in the way eggs are produced, Wilcox Family Farms is serving as a model for other businesses to work on a sustainable future for the Nisqually watershed.”  The Washington State Senate recognized Wilcox Farms with the adoption of Senate Resolution 8619, honoring the company for 100 years of farming and entrepreneurial business operations that have helped shape the Pacific Northwest for the better. 

Legendary in the Puget Sound region for nearly a century for high quality egg and dairy products, Wilcox Farms has, under the leadership of Barrie and Jim become a model for modern sustainable business practice, for thinking globally, and for acting locally.  Four generations of Wilcoxes have graduated from the University of Puget Sound, where the family has established a scholarship to assist civically-minded young people from the Yelm area to attend college and extend their legacy.


For honorary degree guidelines, read more.