2012 Commencement on May 19
March 29, 2012 -
A total of 100 men and women will be receiving Masters degrees, diplomas or certificates as part of Palmer Seminary’s 2012 commencement exercises, scheduled for 10 a.m. on Saturday, May 19, at Enon Tabernacle Baptist Church East on Cheltenham Avenue in Philadelphia. Of these, nearly 80 will be receiving either a Master of Divinity or a Master of Theological Studies degree.
Former Philadelphia mayor W. Wilson Goode Sr. will serve as this year’s commencement speaker. Dr. Goode is a Senior Fellow at the Philadelphia-based Public/Private Ventures (P/PV), which also has offices in New York City and Oakland, California.
Since joining P/PV in 2000, Dr. Goode has served as senior advisor for faith-based initiatives and director of Amachi, a national initiative to mentor children of incarcerated parents. He has assisted in developing over 350 “Mentoring Children of Prisoner” programs in more than 250 cities in all 50 states. These programs have served more than 300,000 children. Dr. Goode co-authored the P/PV publication Building from the Ground Up: Creating Effective Programs to Mentor Children of Prisoners, The Amachi Model
. He also authored In Goode Faith
, an autobiography published in 1992.
Dr. Goode's vision is fed by more than 40 years of experience leading community change, including tenures as Chairman of the Public Utility Commission and Managing Director of the city of Philadelphia. In 1983 he became Philadelphia’s first elected African American mayor.
At this year’s commencement, Palmer will present one of its own, alumnus Dale R. Miller (’82), with an honorary degree. A New Jersey native, Dale graduated from Eastern College in 1978 and from Eastern Baptist Theological Seminary (now Palmer) in 1982 with an M.Div. degree. He also holds an M.A. in sociology (University of Pennsylvania) and a Doctor of Ministry (Union Theological Seminary).
Dale was ordained as an American Baptist pastor in 1982. He has served churches in Upland, PA and Bethlehem, PA. From 2000 to 2008 Dale served as the Southeast Area Minister for American Baptist Churches of Pennsylvania and Delaware. In this position he had oversight of 70 congregations and 83 pastors, providing care, resources and vision.
In 2009 Dale received the Kenneth L. Cober Award from American Baptist Churches’ National Ministries for "Faithful, Effective Leadership in Discipleship Education in an American Baptist Region." He currently serves as Senior Pastor at First Baptist Church, Bethlehem, and as chair of Palmer Seminary’s Alum Task Force.