Stoneleigh-Burnham School is pleased to announce that alumna Dr. Denise Bruner ’70 will deliver this year’s Commencement Address. Dr. Bruner, a physician who runs a private medical practice in Arlington, Va., is one of the nation’s leading authorities on obesity medicine.
The 147th Stoneleigh-Burnham School Commencement will take place on Friday, May 27, 2016 at 10:30 a.m. in Emerson Hall.
Each year, the senior class nominates the person they would like to deliver the Commencement Address. Dr. Bruner is someone with whom students feel a personal connection and who they consider a role model for breaking the barriers of gender and race in her profession.
Last year, Dr. Bruner was a guest speaker at Stoneleigh-Burnham Career Day and discussed her career path, education, and experiences with 11th and 12th graders. In 2011, she received the Stoneleigh-Burnham Distinguished Alumna Award. She is also a member of the school’s Leadership Council, a group of very engaged alumnae, parents, and grandparents who have demonstrated a great interest in helping the school meet its strategic goals.
Dr. Bruner is a second-generation physician. Like her father, Dr. Herman Bruner, she graduated from Howard University College of Medicine in Washington, D.C. After completing her residency in internal medicine at D.C. General Hospital, she re-opened her late father’s general medical practice.
Dr. Bruner pursued further training in bariatric medicine, the branch of medicine that deals with the causes, prevention, and treatment of obesity. She joined the American Society of Bariatric Physicians (ASBP) in 1983, became certified by the American Board of Bariatric Medicine in 1985, and served as president of ASBP from 1999 to 2002. She was honored to become the first female fellow of ASBP in 2002.
Dr. Bruner has appeared on Oprah, Dr. Oz, CNN, NBS, and FOX and has been quoted in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, Time and U.S. News and World Report. Read more about Dr. Bruner on her website.
Each year, the graduating class also nominates a student to represent them as a speaker during Commencement. This year, they chose Siobhan Pascal of Goodwill, Dominica. Pascal is a Resident Assistant, co-president of the Literary Society, and sergeant-at-arms of the Students of Color Affinity Group. She is chair of the Weekend Activities Committee, which she established during her junior year, and a Blue Key tour guide. She is a member of the National Honor Society and a candidate for the International Baccalaureate Diploma. She plays varsity volleyball, basketball, and tennis.
Graduates, students, faculty, staff, Board of Trustees, parents, and guests will also hear remarks at Commencement from Head of School Sally Mixsell and French teacher Alaine Jolicoeur. Senior class president Megan Gardner will give welcoming remarks, and Board of Trustees Chair Allison Porter ’89 will assist Mixsell in the awarding of diplomas.
Prizes and awards will also be presented at Commencement.
The 22 graduates in the Class of 2016 represent five countries. Eleven graduates are International Baccalaureate Diploma candidates and six are members of the National Honor Society.