Dr. Benjamin S. Carson Sr
Commencement Speaker and
Honorary Degree Recipient
Dr. Benjamin S. Carson Sr. was the Commencement Speaker during
Randolph-Macon College’s Commencement on Saturday, May 29, 2010. He aslo received
the Honorary Doctor of Science Degree.
Dr. Carson, a 2008 recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, is a professor
of neurosurgery, oncology, plastic surgery and pediatrics at the Johns Hopkins School
of Medicine, where he has directed pediatric neurosurgery at the Johns Hopkins Children’s
Center for over a quarter of a century. He became the inaugural recipient of a professorship
dedicated in his name in May 2008 and is now the Benjamin S. Carson Sr., M.D. and
Dr. Evelyn Spiro, R.N. Professor of Pediatric Neurosurgery.
Dr. Carson’s career highlights include the first and only successful separation
of craniopagus (conjoined) twins joined at the back of the head in 1987, the first
completely successful separation of type-2 vertical craniopagus twins in 1997 in
South Africa and the first successful placement of an intrauterine shunt for a hydrocephalic
twin. He is interested in all aspects of pediatric neurosurgery, and has a special
interest in trigeminal neuralgia (a severe facial pain condition) in adults.
Dr. Carson is a member of the Alpha Omega Alpha Honor Medical Society, the Horatio
Alger Society of Distinguished Americans and many other prestigious organizations.
He sits on the board of directors of numerous corporations and organizations, including
Kellogg Company, Costco Wholesale Corporation and the Academy of Achievement. He
is an Emeritus Fellow of the Yale Corporation, the governing body of Yale University.
He was appointed in 2004 by President George W. Bush to serve on the President’s
Council on Bioethics. He is a highly regarded motivational speaker who has addressed
various audiences from school systems and civic groups to corporations and the President’s
National Prayer Breakfast. Dr. Carson holds more than 50 honorary doctorate degrees.
In 2001, Dr. Carson was named by CNN and TIME Magazine as one of the nation’s 20
foremost physicians and scientists. That same year, he was selected by the Library
of Congress as one of 89 “Living Legends” on the occasion of its 200th
anniversary. He is also the recipient of the 2006 Spingarn Medal, which is the highest
honor bestowed by the NAACP. In February 2008, Dr. Carson was presented with the
Ford’s Theatre Lincoln Medal by President Bush at the White House. In June 2008,
he was also awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Bush. Dr. Carson
was recognized in November 2008 by U.S. News & World Report and Harvard’s Center
for Public Leadership as one of “America’s Best Leaders.” On February 7, 2009, the
movie “Gifted Hands: The Ben Carson Story,” based on his memoir, premiered on TNT.
Dr. Carson is president and co-founder of the Carson Scholars Fund, which recognizes
young people of all backgrounds for exceptional academic and humanitarian accomplishments.
The Fund is currently operating in 34 states and the District of Columbia, having
awarded more than $ 3.9 million dollars to more than 3900 scholars. The program
also establishes Carson Reading Rooms to encourage young students and their families
to discover the pleasure to be found in books and to recognize the true power of
Dr. Carson’s four books, Gifted Hands, THINK BIG, The Big Picture and Take the Risk:
Learning to Identify, Choose and Live with Acceptable Risk, provide inspiration
and insight for leading a successful life. Dr. Carson and his wife, Candy, have
been married for over 30 years and are the parents of three sons.