2023 Commencement Speaker and Honorary Degrees Announced

Walsh University is pleased to announce His Grace, The Most Reverand Archbishop Bashar Matti Warda, CSsR, of Erbil, Iraq, will deliver the 2023 Commencement Address during graduation exercises on Saturday, May 6, 2023, at 8:30 a.m., for graduates of the Byers School of Nursing and the DeVille School of Business, and at 2:45 p.m., for graduates of the School of Arts, Sciences, and Education and School of Behavioral and Health Sciences, at the Cecchini Health and Wellness Complex, Alumni Arena.  His Grace will also concelebrate Baccalaureate Mass at 12:30 p.m.

During the commencement ceremonies, Walsh University will present Archbishop Warda with an Honorary Doctorate of Theology for his lifetime achievements. Archbishop Warda is a leading international voice for the persecuted Christians in Northern Iraq and Founder of a hospital, a non-governmental organization (NGO), four schools and builder of three churches. Walsh University will also present an Honorary Doctorate of Business to Roger DeVille, a 1965 alumnus, successful business owner, philanthropist, community leader, namesake of the DeVille School of Business, which is celebrating its 15-year anniversary, and long-time friend and benefactor of Walsh University.

Originally from Baghdad, Iraq, Archbishop Warda joined the Saint Peter's Chaldean seminary and was ordained a priest in 1993. In 1995, he joined the Redemptorist order of Flanders in Belgium. After receiving his master's at the Catholic University of Louvain in 1999, he returned to Iraq. He was apostolic administrator of the Diocese of Zaku from July 2011 until its merger with the Diocese of Amadiyah in June 2013. In 2009, the Synod of Bishops of the Chaldean Catholic Church elected him Archbishop of the Archeparchy of Erbil. After Pope Benedict XVI gave his consent to this election in 2010 he was consecrated on 3 July of the same year.

Last November, Walsh University welcomed Archbishop Warda, Chairman of the Board of Trustees and Chancellor of the Catholic University in Erbil, to campus to sign a Memorandum of Understanding aimed at creating new opportunities for education and understanding in the Middle East. Walsh is one of only three universities in a relationship with the Catholic University.

Roger DeVille, President of DeVille Construction Company and DeVille Developments, is a successful businessman and philanthropist active in many community organizations.  DeVille credits his parents and the example set by the Brothers of Christian Instruction as inspirations for his success and belief in giving back.

In 2001, DeVille was nominated and received the Walsh University Outstanding Alumni Achievement Award. In 2010, the DeVille School of Business was named in his honor and established to prepare future servant leaders who would become successful professionals and entrepreneurs in for-profit and not-for-profit organizations in the business world.

DeVille holds a Bachelor of Science in Accounting from Walsh University and currently serves on the Walsh University Board of Directors and DeVille School of Business Advisory Committee.

This year, each Walsh University graduate will receive five tickets which they will be able to secure online.  Information regarding how to access tickets will be forthcoming in early April. A complete schedule and other details regarding the 2023 Commencement ceremony are available at