Honorary Degrees
1918 - Present

Ambassador Nancy G. Brinker 
Doctor of Humane Letters  2003
Status: conferred

Nancy G. Brinker, philanthropist and civic leader, turned personal tragedy into an unprecedented nationwide health crusade. In 1980, as she watched her older sister die from breast cancer, she vowed to dedicate her own life to the eradication of the deadly disease through research, education, screening, and treatment. To support these efforts, she founded in 1982 the Susan B. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation, named for her sister, which since has raised more than $100 million to become the nation's largest private supporter of breast cancer research and education. In addition, she has become an award-winning speaker, writer, and all-round expert on the subject, and has been appointed to the National Cancer Advisory Board by three U.S. presidents. For her heroic work in seeking a cure for, and in aiding women afflicted by, breast cancer, SMU is honored to award Nancy Brinker the degree of Doctor of Humane Letters, honoris causa.