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Honorary degree citation to Cicely Tyson (Doctor of Arts)
As a young woman in New York, you captured the attention of a fashion editor and quickly graced the covers of both mainstream and African American publications. Soon, you found your way to the stage, and your voice, fiercely powerful, called us all to listen closely. A remarkable actress with a clear set of values and a passion for fairness, you gave audiences an intimate view of the lives of Black women. For your work as Rebecca in Sounder, you earned an Oscar nomination, and your exceptional performance in The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman won you two Emmys. In your many award-winning television, film, and stage performances, you have not only entertained, but you have educated.
Through your art you have called upon our shared humanity, the emotions and experiences that unite us all. Working with groups such as UNICEF, Save the Children, and the Clinton Global Initiative, you have helped to strengthen local economies, to provide better healthcare for children, and to improve the lives of thousands. Your humanitarian efforts have extended to your childhood home of Harlem and to communities throughout the U.S.-and the world. You spend countless hours encouraging students, developing cultural and artistic programs at all levels. You have through your continued artistry built bridges across differences.
Setting new standards for the performing arts, you have provided a vibrant model for action and strength in times of challenge. Dartmouth is very pleased to recognize you by its bestowal of the degree of Doctor of Arts.
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