Two Northern Michigan University alumni who maintained longtime connections with their alma mater through service or occupation will receive honorary degrees at NMU's commencement: Scott Holman, a 1965 alumnus and NMU Trustee Emeritus; and Thomas Holmstrom, a 1959 graduate and Professor Emeritus of Economics.
Holman, who splits his time between Freeland and Michigamme, will receive an honorary Doctor of Business degree. He graduated from NMU with two degrees in business management/marketing and biology, then founded the Bay Cast Companies in Bay City. He now serves as president and owner of Mt. Shasta Lodge Restaurant, as well as owner and manager of King Lake Wilderness Properties.
Holman ‘s dedication to NMU is evident through his contributions as a two-time member of the NMU Board of Trustees, which he chaired for a period. His philanthropy has made a lasting impact on his alma mater as well by facilitating scholarships, research initiatives and campus infrastructure enhancement.
Holman served as president of the NMU Alumni Association and as a member of the College of Business Board. He also collaborated with university departments to expand research opportunities for students at the Granite Island Lighthouse. The past Distinguished Alumni Award recipient even played a pivotal role in NMU's groundbreaking WiMAX network, which is now the Educational Access Network.
Holmstrom, a Marquette resident, will receive an honorary Doctor of Economics degree. He began his academic journey at NMU his junior year, graduating with bacehlor's in economics in 1959. He also earned graduate degrees from Oklahoma State University. His career stops included the Michigan Employment Security Commission and later the Labor Department in Washington, D.C., before a teaching opportunity at NMU surfaced with a call from the head of the Economics Department in 1962.
Holmstrom exhibited a profound dedication to NMU and the countless students he educated and inspired for more than three decades. Holmstrom's commitment extended to the broader community and causes close to his heart, such as UPAWS and its annual Strut Your Mutt fundraiser. NMU trustees voted to grant him the status of Professor Emeritus of Economics in 1997.
NMU's commencement begins at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 16, in the Superior Dome. It will be livestreamed at nmu.edu/commencement and broadcast regionally on WNMU-TV13.