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Newspaper Editor, Inventor, Chief Judge Among Those To Receive Clarkson University Honorary Degrees

Watertown Daily Times Managing Editor John B. Johnson Jr., Inventor Dean Kamen and Chief Judge Judith S. Kaye are among the five people who will receive honorary degrees at Clarkson University's 108th Commencement on Sunday, May 13.

Receiving honorary degrees and making short speeches will be Watertown Daily Times Managing Editor John B. Johnson Jr.; Dean Kamen, president of DEKA Research & Development Corporation; New York State Court of Appeals Chief Judge Judith S. Kaye; retired Xerox Corporation Senior Vice President Alan R. Monahan; and retired Dresser Rand Division President John S. Welch Jr.

John B. Johnson Jr. has been the managing editor of the Watertown Daily Times since 1973 and chief operating officer since 1996. He is also a director of the Johnson Newspaper Corp., publishers of the Batavia Daily News, the Malone Telegram, the Catskill Daily Mail, The Hudson Register Star, Ogdensburg Journal, and the Daily Courier Observer. He has also served on the Clarkson University Board of Trustees since 1991.

Dean Kamen is an inventor, entrepreneur and advocate for science and technology education. Known for inventing numerous health-related medical devices, Kamen’s new mystery invention—dubbed “IT” or “Ginger”— has recently been the subject of media speculation. Kamen, at age 49, holds more than 150 U.S. and foreign patents, many of them for devices that have expanded the frontiers of health care. A decade ago Kamen founded FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Robotics, which teams professional engineers with college and high school students in a competition designed to make science and technology exciting.

Judith S. Kaye was appointed New York State’s chief judge in 1993 by Governor Mario M. Cuomo and is the first woman to occupy that post. She was also the first woman to serve on the State’s highest court, the Court of Appeals, which she joined in 1983 after 21 years as a practicing lawyer in New York City.

Alan R. Monahan retired from Xerox Corporation in June of 2000 as senior vice president. His oversight responsibilities included equipment and component manufacturing, supplies development and manufacturing, integrated supply chain logistics, purchasing, and environment health and safety. His organizations won the corporate productivity award for six consecutive years. Monahan has also served on the Clarkson University Board of Trustees since 1993.

John S. Welch Jr. was named division president of Dresser Rand Company in 1987, a position he held until his retirement. Previously he served as vice president, general manager, manager of marketing and operations and chief engineer at Ingersoll-Rand Company, which he joined in 1957 as an engineer. A 1954 graduate of Clarkson, Welch has served on the University’s Board of Trustees since 1991.

Clarkson's Commencement tradition calls for each honorary degree recipient to address the students, their families and guests about a topic central to their success in life.

The weekend will also be marked by the commissioning of United States Army and Air Force ROTC officers on Saturday, May 12.

[News directors and editors: For more information, contact Annie Harrison, Director of Media Relations, at 315-268-6764 or]

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