William G. Sinkford's Honorary Degree
TuftsPresident Lawrence S. Bacow awarded William Sinkford an honorarydegree
during the University's 2002 Commencement ceremonies on Sunday,May 20, 2002
Medford/Somerville, Mass. [05.20.02] William G. Sinkford, President of the Unitarian Universalist Association, the spiritual roots of your order provide the 150-year old foundation for Tufts University. We honor you today both for your own outstanding achievements and for the strength of character that your congregation has infused in this academic community since its founding.
As the first African American leader of the Unitarian Universalist Association, you have called upon your congregation to develop models of community living that value diversity and social activism, and promote responsible and spiritual citizenship.
Your message to the association's quarter-million members rings true here at Tufts, which historically has welcomed persons of diverse backgrounds and opinions, and has fostered a nurturing and tolerant environment for higher education. By virtue of position and shared principles, Reverend Sinkford, you are connected to this University in ways that are everlasting.
The Unitarian Universalist tradition that you represent and continue boldly to shape, and the heritage of Tufts, are closely intertwined; the futures of both entities call for an ongoing trust in others to find community in their differences and respect across a broad range of opinion. With great confidence that your leadership will bring pride to Tufts, I present to you the degree of Doctor of Humane Letters, Honoris Causa.