Roger Mandle to present Commencement address at Salve Regina

Editor’s note: Due to unforeseen circumstances, Salve Regina’s originally scheduled Commencement speaker, Sister Helen Prejean, is unable to attend the ceremony next month. The University will present an honorary doctorate to Sister Helen at a later date.

Dr. Roger Mandle, Newport Restoration Foundation board president who is an expert in strategic planning for museums and universities, will address the graduating class and receive an honorary degree when Salve Regina celebrates its 68th Commencement Sunday, May 20.

Also receiving an honorary degree during the ceremony will be local philanthropist Hope H. “Happy” van Beuren, founder and chair emerita of the van Beuren Charitable Foundation.

Mandle, who served 15 years as president of Rhode Island School of Design, is currently president and CEO of Roger Mandle Associates LLC, a consulting firm that leads in the creation of alternative models of art and design institutions, including online education.

During Mandle’s presidency at RISD (1993-2008), new academic and museum programs were established, including a joint degree program with Brown University, and a new urban campus incorporating a number of renovated historic buildings in downtown Providence. In 2009, RISD awarded Mandle an honorary doctorate.

From 2008-2012, Mandle was executive director and chief museums officer of Qatar Museums Authority, responsible for the concept development, governance structure, staff creation, architectural planning and program execution for more than 12 museums and cultural institutions.

He served as deputy director and chief curator of the National Gallery of Art from 1988-1993, as director of the Toledo Museum of Art from 1977-1988, and as associate director of the Minneapolis Institute of Art from 1967-1974.

Mandle serves on the board of Maine Media Workshops + College and Williams College Museum of Art. He is also chair of the board of a new museum, the Massachusetts Design Art & Technology Institute in New Bedford.

A recognized scholar of 18th century Dutch art, Mandle received his Ph.D. from Case Western Reserve University and his M.A. and museum training certificate from New York University. He has taught museum studies and art history at Williams College, Brown University and RISD. He has been awarded eight honorary degrees.

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