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MILWAUKEE — Mark Attanasio, chairman and principal owner of the Milwaukee Brewers, will be the featured speaker at both of UW-Milwaukee’s May 19 commencement ceremonies.
UWM has two commencement ceremonies at the UWM Panther Arena — the “black” ceremony at 9 a.m. and the “gold” ceremony at 1:30 p.m. This spring’s commencement also will include the awarding of honorary degrees to philanthropist Mary Kellner and Duke University Professor Marion Broome, both at the black ceremony.
Attanasio is credited with turning around the Milwaukee Brewers and building the team into one of the better organizations in major league baseball. When Attanasio took over in 2005, the Brewers hadn’t made the playoffs in 22 years. Since then, the team has qualified three times, making it to within one game of the World Series last year and being named Baseball America’s organization of the year.
Attanasio also is the co-founder and managing partner of Crescent Capital Group, an employee-owned alternative investment advisor with approximately $25 billion in managed assets and over 160 employees.
Attanasio holds positions on several not-for-profit boards, including Heal the Bay, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and Harvard-Westlake School. He served on the President′s Leadership Council at Brown University for a decade and is currently a member of Major League Baseball’s Compensation, Investment, Revenue Sharing, and Labor Policy Committees and Executive Council.
Kellner will receive an honorary doctorate of educational psychology. A philanthropist, educator and community volunteer in the Milwaukee area, she is being honored for her longtime work in helping to improve the education of students from preschool through college.
Kellner, who received her master’s degree in educational psychology from UWM in 1978, taught elementary school and worked as an elementary guidance counselor before spending the past 20 years volunteering and doing board work at numerous not-for-profit organizations such as Next Door, UWM Foundation, the Nehemiah Project, Schools That Can Milwaukee, the I Have A Dream program and, most recently, Pathways High, a new project-based high school in Milwaukee. She was a trustee for the Faye McBeath Foundation for 10 years and is a trustee of Cardinal Stritch University.
The Kelben Foundation, which Kellner and her husband, Ted, established, has provided support to business and education programs as well as scholarships at both UWM and UW-Madison. In 2007, the foundation donated $5 million to UWM to establish an endowed professorship in early childhood education, along with scholarships in early childhood education and business. In 2016, the foundation donated another $5 million toward an endowed professorship in educational psychology, additional early childhood education scholarships and a fund for the Lubar Entrepreneurship Center. The Kelben Foundation also has funded thousands of scholarships for low-income students. Kellner is a co-chair of the university’s comprehensive campaign – Made in Milwaukee, Shaping the World: The Campaign for UWM.
Broome, the Dean and Ruby F. Wilson Professor of Nursing and vice chancellor for nursing affairs at Duke University, will receive an honorary doctorate of science. An expert in pediatric nursing research and practice, she also is associate vice president for academic affairs for nursing at Duke University Health System.
Broome’s research has explored issues including interventions to help children cope with pain, informed consent and assent for children in research, research misconduct in clinical trials, and ethical dilemmas in publishing and leadership of nurse executives. She has published more than 119 papers in 58 refereed nursing, medicine and interdisciplinary journals. She also has written seven books and 20 chapters.
Broome’s leadership positions in her field include being president of the Society for Pediatric Nurses, a member of the Nursing Science Study Section at the National Institutes of Health, and served on governing boards of the Association for the Care of Children’s Health and the Midwest Nursing Research Society.