Brian P. DiMento of Rowley is Top Graduate at Colby Commencement, May 23

WATERVILLE, ME (05/18/2010)(readMedia)-- Undersecretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs and former president of Discovery Communications Judith A. McHale will deliver the commencement address at Colby's 189th Commencement Sunday, May 23. Ceremonies begin at 10 a.m. on the lawn of Miller Library on Colby's campus in Waterville.

Brian P. DiMento of Rowley, Mass., will lead the procession of 479 members of the Class of 2010 after having been named class marshal for the highest grade-point average in the class. A graduate of Triton Regional High School, DiMento majored in chemistry with a concentration in environmental science at Colby and earned a 3.99 GPA. This fall he will enroll at the University of Connecticut - Avery Point in a doctoral program in chemical oceanography.

DiMento was a photographer for Colby's popular online photo gallery, The Student Lens ( and continued his interest in painting at Colby. Having grown up close to the sea helps explain his academic interest in oceanography and his recreational interest in sea kayaking. He also plays golf and tennis recreationally, and he took advantage of Maine's outdoor resources while at Colby, he said.

Undersecretary McHale will share the stage with senior class speaker Steven A. Tatko, a dean's list history major from Willimantic, Maine. Tatko was captain of the school's woodsmen's team, won the Colby Chorale Prize, and will go to work on the North Woods Project for the Natural Resources Council of Maine after graduation.

In addition to McHale, four others will receive honorary Colby doctoral degrees: Professor Kwame Anthony Appiah of Princeton University; Helene Gayle, president and CEO of CARE; Pulitzer Prize-winning author Richard Rhodes; and Professor Josh Silver of Oxford University, director of the Centre for Vision in the Developing World.

The ceremony is open to the public. For those unable to attend, a live webcast will be available at

More information about commencement and about Undersecretary McHale are on Colby's commencement website. Representatives of the media who need information or wish to arrange an audio feed during the ceremony should contact Stephen Collins in the Office of Communications, or 207-859-4352.