Buena Vista University has announced that Iowa Supreme Court Chief Justice Mark S. Cady will deliver the keynote address at the 2012 Commencement ceremonies on Saturday, May 26.
Cady has been an adjunct faculty member at the Fort Dodge site of BVU’s Graduate & Professional Studies (GPS) program since 1982 and over the years has taught more than 1,500 students. He currently teaches Business Law and the Judicial Process. He has been selected for Faculty of the Year honors at the Fort Dodge location on several occasions and received adjunct Faculty of the Year honors for all GPS sites in 2001. He has also served on BVU’s President’s Advisory Council for a total of seven years.
“I have the greatest admiration for President Moore and Buena Vista University, and am deeply honored to have been asked to present the commencement address this year,” says Cady, who was appointed to the Iowa Supreme Court in 1998 and was named Chief Justice in 2011.
“Justice Cady is not only an accomplished jurist but a dedicated teacher and mentor who connects with his students in ways that inspire them to become engaged and involved and to do their best academic work,” says BVU President Fred Moore. “It is his passion for teaching and his understanding of students that will make his message to our graduates one they will long remember.”
Cady earned both his undergraduate and law degrees from Drake University. After graduating from law school in 1978, he served as a judicial law clerk for the Second Judicial District for one year. He was then appointed as an assistant Webster County attorney and practiced with a law firm in Fort Dodge. Cady was appointed a district associate judge in 1983 and a district court judge in 1986. In 1994, he was appointed to the Iowa Court of Appeals. He was elected chief judge of the Court of Appeals in 1997.
Cady is a member of the Order of Coif (honorary), Iowa State Bar Association, Iowa Judges Association, and Iowa Academy of Trial Lawyers (honorary). He is the Iowa chair of iCivics Inc. He also served as chair of the Iowa Supreme Court Task Force on the Court's and Communities' Response to Domestic Abuse and the Drake Law School Board of Counselors. He has also authored and co-authored several professional publications and articles.
In reflecting on why he enjoys teaching at BVU, Cady says “Plato said the law is unrivalled in its ability to teach the student. While so true, I have found teaching the law is unrivalled in its ability to reward the teacher. The dedication and support of the BVU staff and students over the years have inspired me to keep teaching, and have made it fun.”
He and his wife, Becky, have two children: Kelsi Fraser, a speech therapist in Scottsdale, Ariz., and Spencer, a second-year student in the Drake University Law School.
Commencement ceremonies begin at 2:30 p.m. in Siebens Fieldhouse on the Buena Vista University campus. The baccalaureate service will be held at 10:30 a.m. at Schaller Memorial Chapel. For additional details, go to www.bvu.edu/commencement.