Three to Receive Honorary Doctorate Degrees at Carlow University Commencement

Carlow University will honor William Generett, Jr., Patricia Hampl, and Sister Lillian Murphy, RSM, with honorary doctorates during the Commencement ceremony on Saturday, May 14, 2016.

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Urban Innovation21 CEO Generett, Author and University of Minnesota Prof Hampl, and Mercy Housing’s Murphy to Receive Honorary Doctorates from Carlow University

Pittsburgh, Pa. – Carlow University will award three honorary doctorate degrees during its Commencement ceremony on Saturday, May 14, 2016, in Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Hall in Oakland.  The graduation procession begins at 12:45 p.m.

The three honorees are:

William “Bill” Generett, Jr., J.D., president and CEO of Urban Innovation21, a regional public-private economic development partnership.  Generett will also be the Commencement speaker for the ceremony.

Patricia Hampl, MFA, Regents Professor at the University of Minnesota and author of The Florist’s Daughter and Blue Arabesque, which were both named to The New York Times’ 100 Notable Books of the Year.

Sister Lillian Murphy, RSM, the former chief executive officer of Mercy Housing, an award-winning national, not-for-profit housing organization with a presence in 203 cities, 43 states and the District of Columbia and serving more than 145,000 people in more than 46,000 quality, affordable homes.  [Complete bios of the three honorary degree recipients are at the end of this release.]

### About Carlow University

Carlow is a private, co-educational, Catholic university located in the heart of Pittsburgh’s “Tech, Ed, and Med” district. Founded by the Sisters of Mercy, Carlow’s graduates, curriculum, and partnerships reflect its strong commitment to social justice; ethical, forward-thinking and responsible leadership; and service to the community that has a meaningful impact. Undergraduate and graduate degrees are offered in three major areas: Health and Wellness, Leadership and Social Change, and Innovation and Learning. Carlow graduates are in demand for their professional expertise, in fields ranging from nursing, the sciences, and perfusion technology to counseling, education, and forensic accounting; their entrepreneurial spirit and creative mindset; and their ability to manage change.  Our student-athletes compete on eleven different teams, including men’s basketball and men’s and women’s golf—and our mascot is Shammy—the cute green shamrock that is a reflection of the university’s Irish heritage and roots.

Honorary Doctorate Degree Recipients Biography –

William “Bill” Generett Jr., J.D.

Bill Generett is the inaugural President and CEO of Urban Innovation21, a regional public-private economic development partnership that links successful innovation economy clusters with the needs and assets of inner city communities to produce local, living and sustainable economies. Urban Innovation21 was one of the first US based nonprofit organizations to work under the “Inclusive Innovation” model.  Under Generett’s leadership, Urban Innovation21 has been recognized nationally for its work to connect disconnected communities and their residents to the greater Pittsburgh region’s most successful innovation ecosystems.  He is also a partner in the MAPA Group; a DC based international consulting firm.

A Pittsburgh native, Generett has served as an entrepreneur, nonprofit executive, corporate executive, attorney, teacher and consultant.

He is a graduate of Emory University School of Law and a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Morehouse College.  For several years he practiced corporate and real estate law with an Atlanta, Georgia law firm.  Currently, he is licensed to practice law in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the state of Georgia and serves as a consultant in many venues.

Generett is a very active member of the community where he serves and has served on many nonprofit boards and advisory committees including the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust, Pittsburgh Mercy Health Systems, Innovation Works, Neighborhood Allies, Energy Innovation Center, The Heinz Endowments African American Male Initiative Advisory Committee, the Business Advisory Council of the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, the Dick Thornburgh Forum for Law and Public Policy Advisory Committee, President’s Advisory Council Carlow University and the Point Park University Foundation.  In 2014, he was appointed by U.S Secretary of Commerce Pritzker to serve on the U.S. Department of Commerce National Advisory Council on Innovation and Entrepreneurship.

He is married to Gretchen Givens Generett, Ph.D, an Associate Professor in the School of Education at Duquesne University.  They are the proud parents of two children, William and Gabrielle Generett.

Patricia Hampl
Regents Professor, University of Minnesota

Patricia Hampl’s most recent books, The Florist’s Daughter and Blue Arabesque, were both among the New York Times “100 Notable Books of the Year.”  She is the author of four other prose works and two collections of poetry. Her essays, poems, short fiction, travel pieces and reviews have appeared in The New Yorker,Paris Review, New York Times, Los Angeles Times,Best American Short Stories, Best American Essays and others.  Her new book, The Art of the Wasted Day, will be published by Viking Penguin in 2017.  She is a recipient of fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts (in poetry an din prose).  She is a MacArthur Fellow, Regents Professor at the University of Minnesota, a member of the permanent faculty of the Prague Summer Writing Program, and is visiting professor at Kingston University-London where she works on human rights writing.

Lillian Murphy, RSM
Former Chief Executive Officer, Mercy Housing

Sister Lillian Murphy, RSM, was the chief executive officer of Mercy Housing from 1987 to 2014. Under her leadership, Mercy Housing grew to become an award-winning national, not-for-profit housing organization with a presence in 203 cities, 43 states and the District of Columbia and serving more than 145,000 people in more than 46,000 quality, affordable homes.

Sister Lillian is a national spokesperson for affordable housing, supportive services, and the needs of people who are economically poor. She believes that providing safe, quality housing for everyone, regardless of income, is a matter of economic and social justice.

She holds a master’s degree in public health from the University of California at Berkeley and a bachelor’s degree in social science from Russell College, Burlingame, CA.  Before becoming CEO of Mercy Housing, Sister Lillian worked in the health care field for 16 years. In 1999, she received the Non-Profit Housing Association of Northern California’s Affordable Housing Leadership Award for Lifetime Achievement. In 2006, she received the 25th Annual Housing Leadership Award from the National Low Income Housing Coalition. In 2009, Sister Lillian was inducted into the Affordable Housing Hall of Fame by Affordable Housing Finance Magazine.  In 2012, Sister Lillian was selected as the National Housing Council’s Housing Person of the Year. She has received an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters from the University of San Francisco and an honorary doctorate from Saint Xavier University in Chicago, Illinois.

Sister Lillian has served on the boards of the National Housing Trust and the editorial advisory board of Affordable Housing Finance magazine. She is a past member of the Affordable Housing Advisory Council for the Federal Home Loan Bank, the Fannie Mae National Housing Advisory Council, Washington Mutual’s National Community Council, and the advisory committee of the Bank of America Community Development Bank. She has served on the boards of the Catholic Health Corporation; Catholic Healthcare West; The Colorado Trust; The Alegent Health System in Omaha, Nebraska; and the Low Income Investment Fund and as a public interest director for the Federal Home Loan Bank in Topeka, Kansas.

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