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Immigration advocate Edwin Silverman to address DePaul College of Law graduating class

Immigration advocate Edwin Silverman to address the College of Law's graduating class May 15.
DePaul University College of Law will hold its 118th commencement ceremony May 15 at the Rosemont Theatre where some 250 students will receive their Juris Doctors or Master of Laws degrees. The graduating class will be addressed by Edwin Silverman, a leader in U.S. refugee resettlement policies and programs. 

The Rev. Dennis H. Holtschneider, C.M., president of DePaul, will confer the degrees in a ceremony scheduled to begin at 1:30 p.m.

During a career spanning nearly four decades, Silverman led and shaped refugee resettlement and immigrant integration policy on the local, state and federal levels. With Silverman’s guidance, Illinois became a leader and national model for refugee resettlement. He began serving as the Illinois state refugee coordinator in 1976, first under the Governor’s Center for Asian Assistance, which then became the Refugee Resettlement Program under the Illinois Department of Public Aid.

On a wider scale, Silverman worked with lawmakers and policy experts on refugee matters and helped draft the United States Refugee Act of 1980, which established the Federal Refugee Resettlement Program.

From 2003-11, he chaired the Advisory Council for Immigrant and Refugee Affairs for the Chicago Commission on Human Relations. Now retired, Silverman’s long career made it possible for international victims of war, violence and terrorism to make new lives in the United States.

Silverman will be introduced by Dean Jennifer Rosato Perea of the College of Law.

Since its establishment in 1912, the College of Law has graduated more than 19,250 students. DePaul law graduates have gone on to become highly skilled, committed and vigorous leaders of the bar, bench and business industries. Alumni include numerous state and federal judges, three Chicago mayors and managing partners of dozens of major law firms.

Its rich history of quality education, access and diversity has long set the College of Law apart. DePaul was among the first law schools in Illinois to admit historically excluded groups including female and Jewish students.

The college is home to distinguished centers and institutes that are dedicated to teaching, research, advocacy, and public education and engagement across a wide range of disciplines. Distinctive educational opportunities for students include joint degrees, certificate programs and experiential learning taught by 36 full-time faculty members who are all accomplished attorneys.

Areas of concentration for the College of Law include business law and taxation; child and family law; criminal law; health law; intellectual property law and information technology; international and comparative law; and public interest law.

In 2015, the National Law Journal named the College of Law's Clinical Program, Master of Laws (LLM) Program and joint Juris Doctors/Master of Business Administration Program the “Best in Chicago.”

DePaul has had the most alumni recognized by Illinois Super Lawyers for the past seven years. In the 2016 edition, 340 were listed, with 11 in the top 100, two in the top 10 and one ranked the No. 1 attorney in Illinois.

The Rosemont Theater is located at 5400 N. River Road, Rosemont. Those unable to attend may watch a live stream of the event at Click on the word “webcast” once the ceremony begins.

Commencement ceremonies for DePaul’s nine other colleges and schools are scheduled for June 11 and 12. For additional information, including a list of speakers and honorary degree recipients, visit

Story courtesy of the DePaul Newsroom.

Wendy Smit
312-362-7749 desk | 312-342-6193 cell