Hamline News

Justice Alan C. Page to Speak at Hamline University's Commencement


Justice Alan C. Page will deliver the address during undergraduate Commencement at Hamline University on Saturday, May 18, 2019. The ceremony begins at 11 a.m.

“Justice Page’s commitment to education, devotion to Minnesota and his athletic achievements are a wonderful inspiration for the 2019 graduates of the state’s first university,” said Hamline president Dr. Fayneese Miller. “We are honored to have him speak at our commencement ceremony.”

Alan Page was born in Canton, Ohio, on August 7, 1945. He graduated from Canton Central Catholic High School in 1963 and received his B.A. in political science from the University of Notre Dame in 1967, where he also succeeded on the football field. He led the 1966 team to a national championship, an accomplishment that earned him a spot in the College Football Hall of Fame.

After college, Page continued to shine on the football field, playing defensive tackle for the Minnesota Vikings from 1967–78 and the Chicago Bears from 1978–81. His professional career included six All-Pro honors, a National Football League Most Valuable Player nod in 1971 and a 1988 induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

In addition to his athletic achievements, Page was committed to academics, earning his J.D. from the University of Minnesota Law School in 1978 while still an active NFL player. His legal career began when he worked as an attorney for a law firm in Minneapolis, and he then served seven years as an attorney in the office of the Minnesota Attorney General.

He was elected to the Minnesota Supreme Court in 1992, becoming the first African American on the court. When Justice Page was re-elected in 1998, he became the biggest vote-getter in Minnesota history. He was reelected in 2004 and 2010 and served until he reached the mandatory retirement age of 70 in 2015.

In 1988, Justice Page and his late wife, Diane, founded the Page Education Foundation, which assists Minnesota students of color in their pursuit of postsecondary education. To date, the foundation has awarded more than $15 million in grants to more than 7,000 students.

Justice Page and his daughter, Kamie Page, have written three children’s picture books, Alan and His Perfectly Pointy Impossibly Perpendicular Pinky (2013), The Invisible You (2014) and Grandpa Alan’s Sugar Shack (2017).

In November 2018, Justice Page received the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

Link to press release.

Written by staff