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Catherine Distler named 2006 valedictorian

Author: Arts and Letters


Catherine Distler, a double major in anthropology and preprofessional studies from Leawood, Kan., has been named valedictorian of the 2006 University of Notre Dame graduating class and will present the valedictory address during Commencement exercises at 2p.m. May 21 (Sunday) in the Joyce Center arena.

Distler earned a3.94 grade point average and was a member of the Dean’s List each semester. Her service activities include an international summer service project in Calcutta, India, where she worked for nine weeks in 2005 at Mother Teresa’s Missionaries of Charity home for the destitute and sick. She also served as co-organizer of Notre Dame’s World AIDS Day Campaign and as a member of VOICE, the student advisory board to the University’s Center for Social Concerns.

A volunteer at South Bend’s Center for the Homeless and Memorial Hospital, Distler also worked as a researcher on studies on the impact of HIV/AIDS on children in the developing world, and clinical oncology and palliative care. She served as sophomore class vice president and participated in the Notre Dame chapter of the Children’s Defense Fund.

The Commencement invocation will be offered by Kristin Graham, a double major in English and history from Pleasanton, Calif., who will graduate with a 3.98 grade point average.

Originally published by Julie Hail Flory at on April 27, 2006.