John K. Roth, PhD, a professor and researcher known internationally for

his expertise on Holocaust studies, has been selected as the keynote

speaker for the 18th annual commencement ceremony of Western University of

Health Sciences (WesternU).

The ceremony will be held at 1 p.m. on Friday, June 4, at the Anaheim

Convention Center. Three hundred and fifty candidates for graduation from

six programs are expected to participate.

The title of Dr. Roth’s speech, “”Healing the Nation’s Wounds,”” is adapted

from a phrase in Abraham Lincoln’s second inaugural address. His

presentation will focus on the responsibility of medical professionals to

maintain the health of society, both physically and mentally, and will

include references to the war in Kosovo, the high school shooting in

Littleton and the recent tornadoes in the Midwest, as well as the


“”I’ve been on the WesternU campus several times and I have great

admiration and respect for the University,”” said Dr. Roth, an Upland

resident. “”I consider giving the Commencement address to be a huge honor

and a very serious responsibility.””

WesternU President Philip Pumerantz, PhD, said Dr. Roth was selected to

give the commencement address because of his dedication to educating

others about acceptance and tolerance.

“”His beliefs and actions are consistent with the University policy of

caring, compassion and humanism,”” said Dr. Pumerantz. “”I think his message

will prove to be inspirational to everyone, and particularly serve as a

guide to our graduating health professions students.””

Dr. Roth has written or edited more than 20 books on the Holocaust and

other topics. He is involved with the Elie Wiesel Foundation for Humanity

and on the editorial board for Holocaust and Genocide Studies. He was

appointed to the United States Holocaust Memorial Council by President

Clinton in 1994.

A professor of philosophy and religious studies at Claremont McKenna

College since 1966, Dr. Roth has also received appointments as a Graves

Fellow in the Humanities, a Fulbright Lecturer in American Studies at the

University of

Innsbruck, Austria, and a Fellow of the National Humanities Institute at

Yale University. In 1988 he was awarded the title of U.S. National

Professor of the Year.

Last summer, WesternU established the Elie Wiesel Humanism in Healing

Award with the guidance and recommendations of Dr. Roth. The award is now

the University’s highest honor.