Marlin Fitzwater, who served as assistant to the president and press secretary for Ronald Reagan from 1987 to 1989 and for George H. W. Bush from 1989 to 1993, will be honored at K-State’s Graduate School commencement at 1 p.m. Friday, Dec. 11, in Bramlage Coliseum. He will also serve as the commencement speaker for the ceremony.
The awarding of the honorary doctorate follows the approval by the Kansas Board of Regents. it is one of the highest honors the university can give. Fitzwater will be awarded the honorary doctorate and also will receive a medal at the commencement ceremony.
“Marlin Fitzwater is a political figure that I and millions of other Americans remember well throughout some of our nation’s biggest historical moments,” said Kirk Schulz, Kansas State University president. “We want to honor his distinguished career in both Kansas media and national media as well as his ties to Kansas State University, wherein he returned as a speaker for the Landon Lecture series in 1996. It is through the leadership of such distinguished alumni that will help Kansas State University be recognized as a Top 50 public research university by 2025.
Fitzwater grew up on a small farm near Abilene. In 1965, he earned his bachelor’s degree in journalism from Kansas State University. In 1965, Fitzwater was named the Outstanding Male Journalism graduate.
Fitzwater is the only press secretary in history to be appointed by two U.S. presidents.
In 1992, Fitzwater received the Presidential Citizens Medal, the nation’s second highest civilian achievement award.