On Friday afternoon, May 13, 2016, I had the privilege of attending the Oakland University William Beaumont Medical School Graduation Ceremony. There was certainly nothing unlucky about this Friday the 13th, including the Michigan weather. The second graduating class took to the stage while family, friends, university staff and administrators, community members, and dozens of other medical school students looked on as we watched these graduates become medical doctors. As an observer, you could see the great pride as Dr. Robert Folberg, Founding Dean of the medical school, shakes the hands of each of his graduates as they receive their diplomas. And for those where medicine runs in the family, there were parents and siblings who are also doctors and assisted in the hooding of their graduate. But among the many highlights of this very exciting day was the delivery of the keynote address by commencement speaker Deirdre Waterman. As a friend and colleague, I was fascinated to learn that Deirdre, actually Dr. Deirdre Waterman, holds the distinction of being the first African-American ophthalmologist in Michigan. But among her many accomplishments as a highly skilled physician, she is also the Mayor of the City of Pontiac. How is this for a title: The Honorable Dr. Deirdre Waterman, M.D. Well, she’s much more humble and is completely happy with just Deirdre, but to me, she’s pretty amazing to have spent an entire career as an ophthalmologist and now as a Mayor and deserves the respect for her incredible achievements.
Congratulations to all of the medical schools graduates, to President Hynd, and to Dr. Folberg, on graduating the second class. This community looks forward to many graduating classes to come from what is now a growing and successful medical school right here in Auburn Hills.
Tom Tanghe, City Manager