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Rockford College Marks its 164th Year with Charter Day Celebration

Thursday, February 24, 2011  
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For immediate release – 2/23/11
Rockford College Communications Office: 815-226-3374

Rockford, Ill. – On Wednesday, March 2, 2011, Rockford College will celebrate its founding with the 164th annual Charter Day Convocation at 4:00 p.m., in Maddox Theatre, Clark Arts Center. This event includes an academic procession of faculty in traditional robes depicting their rank, with stoles representing their respective alma maters and degrees. The event is free and open to the public. Tickets are required. Clark Arts Center is accessible. For more information, contact the box office at 815-226-4100.

This year’s address, will be given by James S. Whitehead, J.D., college trustee and great grandson of Blanche Walker Burpee (Class of 1895), and son of John Whitehead, both of whom served as College trustees. Mr. Whitehead is currently Senior Counsel with the Sidley Austin law firm in Chicago. Mr. Whitehead was raised in Rockford and has remained dedicated to the enrichment of the Rockford community through his service with the College. He has served on the College’s board of trustees since 1993, including Board Chairman from 2000 – 2003. Additionally, Mr. Whitehead was granted an honorary Doctor of Laws degree by Rockford College in 2004. Mr. Whitehead’s address is entitled, "Blanche Walker Burpee: A Rockford College Heroine”

Charter Day celebrates the anniversary of the College and its receipt of the original document from the State of Illinois recognizing the Rockford Female Seminary as a degree-granting private institution of higher learning. Rockford College was originally founded as Rockford Female Seminary in 1847, a counterpart to Beloit College, which at the time was a men’s college. Rockford changed its name to Rockford College in 1892 and began enrolling men in 1955.  

For more information about the history of Rockford College visit:

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