Elmhurst U. to Host Order of Lincoln Ceremony for Distinguished Illinoisans

April 7, 2022 | by the Office of Marketing and Communications

As part of Elmhurst University’s sesquicentennial celebrations, the University will host a ceremony by the Lincoln Academy of Illinois recognizing the 2022 recipients of the Order of Lincoln, the state’s highest honor for professional achievement and public service.

Established in 1964, the Order of Lincoln honors Illinois residents whose work uplifts every community in the state. This year’s Lincoln Laureates will be honored at the 58th annual convocation on Saturday, April 30, in Hammerschmidt Memorial Chapel on the Elmhurst University campus.

“Elmhurst University is very proud to host this ceremony, which pays tribute to such accomplished individuals,” said President Troy D. VanAken. He and his wife, Dr. Annette VanAken, serve as 2022 Civic Committee co-chairs of the event.

The 2022 Lincoln Laureates are:

  • William Brodsky, a global leader in the development of the futures and options market with a 35-year career at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange and the Chicago Board Options Exchange.
  • Debra Cafaro, chairman of the board and chief executive officer of the health care real estate investment trust Ventas, Inc.
  • Rebecca Carlisle Doyle, former Illinois director of agriculture who also spent a decade working with the United Nations’ World Food Programme.
  • John McCarter, a life trustee and president emeritus of The Field Museum, where he served as president and chief executive officer from 1996 to 2012.
  • Martha C. Nussbaum, the Ernst Freund Distinguished Service Professor of Law and Ethics, appointed in the University of Chicago Law School and philosophy department.
  • The Hon. Robert R. Thomas, who played 12 seasons in the National Football League and launched a successful career in law that culminated in his selection as chief justice of the Illinois Supreme Court.

“For more than 50 years, the Order of Lincoln has recognized residents who go above and beyond in service to the public, offering innovation, generosity, and commitment to their fellow Illinoisans through a range of achievements,” said Gov. JB Pritzker, who serves as president of the Lincoln Academy of Illinois. “The 2022 class of Lincoln Laureates can be especially proud to receive this award in an era that has asked so much of all our communities. Illinois is a state defined by its kindness, and it’s my honor to recognize these six individuals for embodying that characteristic in all their years of service.”

The Order of Lincoln is Illinois’ highest civilian award, presented to those whose professional achievements and contributions to the betterment of humanity have brought honor to the state, inspiring all Illinoisans to respond to what President Lincoln called “the better angels of our nature.”

The Lincoln Academy of Illinois is an independent, non-partisan organization established in 1964 to administer the program and to choose the annual honorees. For more information, visit TheLincolnAcademyofIllinois.org.

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