Judge who led Detroit through bankruptcy is OCC’s commencement speaker

Detroit bankruptcy Judge Steven W. Rhodes is Oakland Community College’s Class of 2015 commencement speaker.bilde

Rhodes presided over the city of Detroit’s bankruptcy, the biggest municipal bankruptcy in U.S. history. In February, together with Detroit Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr, Rhodes was named Crain’s Newsmaker of the Year. He is also a featured speaker at the Detroit Regional Chamber’s 2015 Mackinac Policy Conference on Mackinac Island in May.

Celebrating its 50th anniversary, the College’s commencement ceremony is at 2 p.m., Saturday, May 30, 2015, at the Palace of Auburn Hills. More than 2,000 students are expected to graduate.

“Rhodes is a skilled, thoughtful leader who set the bar high for all involved during Detroit’s bankruptcy proceedings, taking into account the lives of thousands of people and institutions with every decision he made,” said OCC Chancellor Timothy R. Meyer. “There are many lessons our students can glean from this chapter of this region’s history.”

A graduate of Purdue University and the University of Michigan Law School, Rhodes became a federal bankruptcy judge in 1985. He served on the Bankruptcy Appellate Panel for the Sixth Circuit Court, as law clerk for District Judge John Feikens, as Assistant U.S. Attorney and as U.S. Magistrate. Prior to his time on the bench, he worked in private practice and was an assistant federal prosecutor. Rhodes began his legal career in 1973.

Rhodes is a fellow of the American College of Bankruptcy and a former associate editor of the American Bankruptcy Law Journal and the Michigan Law Review.

With five campuses throughout Oakland County, Oakland Community College is celebrating its 50th year. OCC is the largest community college in Michigan and the 25th largest in the nation. It offers degrees and certificates in approximately 100 career fields and university transfer degrees in business, science and the liberal arts. Nearly a million students have enrolled in the college since it opened in 1965. To learn more about OCC, visit www.oaklandcc.edu.

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