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Home > News > Alumnus Dassenko Keynotes 93rd McGeorge Commencement Ceremony
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McGeorge alumnus Paul E. Dassenko, ’82, gave the commencement address.

Alumnus Dassenko Keynotes 93rd McGeorge Commencement Ceremony

May 22, 2017

Tags: Alumni, Student Life, 2017

McGeorge School of Law, University of the Pacific culminated its 93rd academic year at the graduation ceremony of the law school on May 20, 2017. Dean Francis J. Mootz III presided over the ceremony, and University President Dr. Pamela A. Eibeck joined him in the platform party. Paul E. Dassenko, '82, gave the commencement address. Dassenko serves as the Chief Executive Officer and President of Risk Transfer Underwriting, Inc. in New York.

The Class of 2017 Valedictorians were Jessica Gosney (J.D. Day Division) and Ian McGlone (J.D. Evening Division). Student speakers at the ceremony were José Parra (J.D. Day Division), Brian Russ (J.D. Evening Division), Michelle Teran (MSL) and Mohammad J. Rahimi (LL.M.), followed by a speech by Distinguished Professor of Law John Sprankling.  The McGeorge Barrister of the Year was José Parra. The Commencement ceremony was held at the Memorial Auditorium in Downtown Sacramento.

Student Honors

Jessica Gosney (Day Division), and Ian McGlone and Ashley Pane (Evening Division) were honored with Outstanding Graduating Senior Awards for academic achievement. Hannah Fuetsch and Erin Price (Day Division) and Virginia Martucci (Evening Division) received Outstanding Scholastic Achievement Awards. Rosemary Deck and Lilliana Udang (Day Division), and Rainey Jacobson and Randy Tong (Evening Division) received Outstanding Student Achievement Awards. ALI-ABA Scholarship & Leadership Awards went to Melissa Currier (Day Division) and Brian Russ (Evening Division). Nicole Low (Day Division) and Joey Campbell (Evening Division) received Outstanding Student Service Awards. Alina Davletshina received the LL.M. Award of Excellence, and the MSL Award of Excellence went to Lindsey Bonnetta and Michelle Teran.  The Graduate Student Service Award was given to LL.M. graduate Carolina Rondon-Chacon. The University of the Pacific Champion of Diversity and Inclusion Award was given to Sylvia La Rosa. The award winners were recognized at the Gradate Luncheon held May 16 at the Citizens Hotel

Fredericka McGee '91, a representative from the Alumni Association Board of Directors, spoke at the Graduate Luncheon. Sylvia La Rosa and Sarah Papazian, the Class of 2017 Alumni Representatives, emceed the lunch.  Also recognized at the Graduate Luncheon were the Julie Davies Professors of the Year: Professor John Sprankling (Day Division) and Professors Cary Bricker and John Sims (Evening Division). The Student Bar Association's (SBA) annual Professor of the Year Award is named the Julie Davies Professor of the Year Award in appreciation for Professor Davies' dedicated service to McGeorge as Associate Dean for Academic Affairs from 2009 to 2013, and her steadfast commitment to outstanding teaching, learning, and assessment. The SBA's annual Anna Rose Fischer Award is given to an outstanding member of the McGeorge staff or administration who, in the course of their employment, has performed above and beyond their job responsibilities, thereby immeasurably aiding and assisting the McGeorge Student Body. The Anna Rose Fischer Staff Member of the Year was awarded to Kelli Sarnowski, Office of Student Affairs. 

The McGeorge Capital Center for Law & Policy recognizes students who work on behalf of others in legal or community service as they earn their law degrees with the Capital Commendation for Public Service. Jordan Catalano, Melissa Tess Currier, Rosemary Deck, Mark Gabriel Rodriguez Doronio, Elizabeth C. Enea, Dillon Hockerson, Kyle Kerkhoff, Ryan John Mahoney and Michael Thomas Taney were recognized for Extraordinary Commitment (150 Volunteer Hours); Chancellor John Allen Veal was recognized for Superior Commitment (100 Volunteer Hours), and Carl Block, Michael Burman, Isabel Ashley Glaese, Melerie Oliveira Michael and Vivian Tran were recognized for Admirable Commitment (50 Volunteer Hours). (View photos of the Graduate Luncheon) The Trial Advocate of the Year was Michelle Ahronovitz, and the Appellate Advocates of the Year were Rosemary Deck, Andia Farzaneh and José Parra. The Trial and Appellate Advocacy Awards ceremony was held on April 27, 2017. (View photos).

On May 19, 2017, The McGeorge Chapter of the Order of the Coif inducted 14 new members from the Class of 2017. Former California State Senator Noreen Evans, '81, gave the keynote address to the new members.

Commencement Slideshow

Commencement 2017