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Local educator, Mac grad to speak at Commencement

April 27, 2012

JACKSONVILLE, IL – Marybeth Lauderdale, superintendent of the Illinois School for the Deaf and the Illinois School for the Visually Impaired, will be the featured speaker at the 2012 MacMurray College Commencement.

 Lauderdale, a 1979 graduate of MacMurray, will be awarded a Doctor of Humane Letters during the ceremony, held 1:30 p.m., Saturday, May 5 in the Annie Merner Chapel on the corner of College and Clay avenues on the MacMurray College campus. She will speak on “Having It All.”

 Lauderdale has brought an important legacy of public and professional service to the people of the state of Illinois, to the communities of Jacksonville and those in Morgan County, and particularly to the deaf and hard-of-hearing community. Her professional life has been a manifestation of MacMurray College’s core values, with education and service being central themes.

 Her teaching, administration, and leadership serving the deaf and hard-of-hearing were nurtured during her undergraduate career at MacMurray. She graduated from MacMurray in 1979 with a Bachelor of Science degree, summa cum laude, and with honors in her major. She was certified by the State of Illinois as a teacher of Elementary Education as well as Hearing Impaired.

 In 1990 she added a master’s in Educational Administration, summa cum laude, from the University of Illinois at Springfield and in 2009, she earned an Education Specialist degree in Change Leadership from Gallaudet University in Washington, D.C., the national university for the deaf. In 2010, she earned her Superintendent Certification from the University of Illinois at Springfield, once more summa cum laude.

 She has put her exemplary education to use in service to the deaf, teachers of the deaf, MacMurray College, and the Jacksonville community. For many years she served the deaf community nationally through her association with the Captioned Media Program of the National Association of the Deaf.

 In 1980, shortly after graduating from MacMurray, she joined the staff of Illinois School for the Deaf as a teacher of middle school communication skills. Her responsibilities at ISD grew in importance over the years. Among them, in 1995 she was appointed curriculum and special projects director, in 2000 director of media and curriculum, and in 2002 acting assistant high school principal. She continued to be promoted, to assistant superintendent in 2005, to acting superintendent in 2006, and finally to superintendent of the entire school in 2007.

 And then, in recognition of her ability, in an unprecedented move in September 2010 she was appointed superintendent also of Illinois School for the Visually Impaired, the first person ever to head two different state institutions simultaneously.

 As a neighbor of MacMurray, she has served her alma mater in various capacities over the years. From 1982 through 1984 she served as head counselor of MacMurray’s summer enrichment program for school children. In 1988-89 and again in 2001-04, she taught MacMurray courses in instructional media and in advanced interpreting for the deaf.

 Through her teaching and administration over the last three decades, she has empowered the lives of deaf and hard-of-hearing people and has brought great honor to her alma mater of MacMurray College. In recognition of her many accomplishments and great service, MacMurray College is happy to present her with the honorary degree of Doctor of Humane Letters.


For more information, contact:

Ted Roth, Director of Communications and Marketing
Work: 217-479-7027
Email: Send Email

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