Jim Tranquada

New York Times columnist, author, and cultural and political commentator David Brooks will be the featured speaker at Occidental College's 128th Commencement ceremony on May 16. 

Brooks, a Times columnist since 2003, has been a senior editor for The Weekly Standard, a contributing editor at Newsweek and the Atlantic Monthly, and is currently a commentator on "The Newshour with Jim Lehrer." He is the author of Bobos in Paradise: The New Upper Class and How They Got There and On Paradise Drive: How We Live Now (And Always Have) in the Future Tense. He also edited the anthology Backward and Upward: The New Conservative Writing.

A graduate of the University of Chicago, Brooks began his career in journalism as a police reporter with City News Service in Chicago. He worked at the Wall Street Journal for nine years as op-ed editor, foreign correspondent, book review section editor, and briefly as movie critic. He joined The Weekly Standard at its launch in 1995.

Brooks will be one of five honorary degree recipients at the 10 a.m. outdoor ceremony in the Remsen Bird Hillside Theater on the Occidental campus. Also receiving honorary degrees will be Father Gregory Boyle, gang expert and executive director of Homeboy Industries; international opera star Suzanna Guzman; legendary entertainment executive and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee Mo Ostin; and physicist Patricia Alireza '94.