Actress Angela Bassett keynote speaker at Spelman College's graduation ceremony

Spelman College has announced the distinguished guests for its 137th Commencement Ceremony, scheduled for May 19 at the Georgia International Convention Center (GICC).

Acclaimed actress, director, and executive producer Angela Bassett will deliver the keynote address and receive an honorary Doctor of Fine Arts degree. Bassett's illustrious career includes iconic performances in films such as "Malcolm X," "Waiting to Exhale," and "Black Panther." She is also known for her role as Queen Ramonda in "Black Panther: Wakanda Forever" and as the star of the hit drama "9-1-1."

Official Photograph of Associate Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson taken by Supreme Court Photographer Fred Schilling, 2022.

In addition to Bassett, trailblazing Supreme Court Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson will be awarded an honorary Doctor of Laws degree. Justice Jackson, known for her extensive legal career and recent appointment to the Supreme Court, has dedicated her life to justice and equality.

Renowned journalist Rose Scott will receive the National Community Service Award for her nearly two decades of public service. Scott, the executive producer and host of the midday news program "Closer Look" on Atlanta's NPR station, 90.1 FM – WABE, has been a voice of accountability for local and national issues.

The Baccalaureate Ceremony, scheduled for May 18, will feature Reverend Dr. Yvette Flunder as the speaker. Dr. Flunder, founder of the City of Refuge United Church of Christ, is a respected leader in the faith community and advocate for social justice.

Spelman College President Helene D. Gayle, M.D., MPH, expressed her excitement for the distinguished guests, stating, "Spelman College is honored to have acclaimed actress and director Angela Bassett to bring words of inspiration to our graduating Class of 2024. Her work has had a tremendous impact both on and off the screen and serves as an example for our students to lead in their own spaces."

The Class of 2024 includes 504 degree candidates, receiving 325 Bachelor of Arts and 179 Bachelor of Science degrees. The commencement ceremonies will be a celebration of achievement and a testament to the legacy of excellence at Spelman College.