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President and Chief Executive, Detroit Edison; University of Detroit Board of Trustees

Honorary Doctor of Laws



Last evening the University's Baccalaureate speaker took as his theme the Credo of the University of Detroit - that we believe in God, in the intrinsic value of the human person, in his God-given rights; that we therefore stand opposed to the materialistic philosophies which would make man the pawn of the State, of an economic system, or the mass mind. He pointed out that the secret of human relations is man's ability properly to appraise the value of the human person in himself and in his fellow man, and that this value is rooted in the eternal destiny of the individual soul. It is evident that such a Credo is elusive in the abstract. It is possible to dramatize it in the panorama of history, as Father Lord did in his brilliant creation, "Light Up the Land." And it will be understood and accepted if it appears visible and, so to speak, incarnate in the distinguished deeds of men of action of our own times. As the University looks out over the Detroit of today, she notes with pride its giant accomplishments in housing, in transportation, in community service, in municipal administration and in industrial relations. This fills her with a special and urgent sense of responsibility for the role which she feels called upon to play in ministering to the heart and soul of the Detroit of tomorrow. In attempting to fulfill this responsibility she is heartened and strengthened by knowing that many of the very men who have contributed notably to the material progress of Detroit are eager to share, and have already shared, in her educational and spiritual mission. The University is deeply grateful to these men for the encouragement, the inspiration, and the assistance which they have given in such generous measure. Tonight, Reverend President, I have the privilege of presenting three of these men, Members of the Advisory Board of Lay Trustees, for the highest recognition which the University has the power to bestow - the Honorary Degree of Doctor of Laws. When Mr. Walker Cisler graduated from Cornell University in 1922, he took a position with the Public Service Electric and Gas Company of Newark, and from then on electrical power has been his absorbing interest. But one cannot deal with electrical power for very long without being, so to speak, charged by induction with some of the characteristic qualities of that medium: control over space and time, irresistible power, instantaneous and flawless coordination. These qualities Mr. Cisler brought to the development of electrical power in many parts of our own country and in half a dozen European nations. Last year he was chosen president of the international organization whose purpose is the production of atomic energy for peacetime purposes. Meanwhile through his capable and persevering leadership Detroit Edison has been in the forefront of planning with the Atomic Energy Commission a vast program of industrial research that bids fair to revolutionize public services as we know them. There is scarcely a project in the plans for the Detroit of Tomorrow that has not benefited from Mr. Cisler's wise experience and cooperation. It is especially gratifying and encouraging for us to know from his many services to the University that he has a high estimate of her place in the vision of Detroit's tomorrow. Reverend President, I present Mr. Walker Lee Cisler for the Honorary Degree of Doctor of Laws. Commencement, University of Detroit, June 16, 1955.

University of Detroit

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