Elmhurst University Trustee Emeritus Russ Weigand, '64, and UCC President John Dorhauer to receive honorary degrees

At Elmhurst University's 152nd commencement ceremonies on May 20, honorary doctoral degrees will be awarded to the Rev. John C. Dorhauer, president and general minister of the United Church of Christ; and Russ Weigand, a longtime trustee and generous supporter of the university.

The university will celebrate its historic affiliation with the United Church of Christ in awarding the honorary Doctor of Divinity degree to the Rev. Dorhauer, of St. Louis, who has led the denomination since 2015.

During his tenure, he has distinguished himself as a respected leader in the United Church of Christ, as well as in the larger interfaith and social justice communities.

Also an author and theologian, Dorhauer was a visiting scholar at Elmhurst University in 2015, and spoke on campus in April about the threat of Christian nationalism. Rev. Dorhauer will deliver the commencement address at the undergraduate ceremonies.

Weigand, an Oak Brook resident and trustee emeritus of the university, will receive the honorary Doctor of Humane Letters in recognition of his many years of service to, and support of his alma mater. His philanthropic support of the university dates back to his graduation, when he and his first wife and classmate, the late Rose Weigand, helped to establish the 1964 Class Scholarship.

Weigand also established the Rose Weigand Memorial Scholarship for speech therapy and special education majors. Retired from a successful career in philanthropic consulting, he is an Alumni Merit Award winner and served as an Elmhurst University trustee for nearly 30 years.

In 2016, he and his wife, Joyce Slone Weigand, pledged $2.25 million to the University to support the work of the Center for Professional Excellence, which was named the Russell G. Weigand Center for Professional Excellence in honor of the generous gift.

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