Best-selling author Kate White ’72 to speak at Union’s Commencement

Publication Date

New York Times best-selling novelist and former magazine editor-in-chief Kate White ’72 will be the featured speaker at Union’s 228th Commencement, College officials announced today.

Approximately 500 students in the Class of 2022 will receive degrees during the ceremony, scheduled for 10 a.m. Sunday, June 12, on Hull Plaza. White will receive an honorary degree.

Kate White

“We are delighted and honored that Kate White has accepted our invitation to join us in celebrating the Class of 2022,” said President David R. Harris. “As one of the first women to graduate from Union, Kate has enjoyed an extraordinary career and been an inspiration for many in her fields. We look forward to her sharing her wisdom with the class.”

White spent 14 years as the editor-in-chief of Cosmopolitan magazine, which for her entire tenure was the most successful magazine in single copy sales in the U.S. She previously served as editor-in-chief of Child, Working Woman, McCall’s and Redbook magazines.

In 2012, she left Cosmopolitan to concentrate on writing suspense novels. She is a New York Times best-selling author of 15 novels. Eight of those are psychological thrillers, including “The Fiancée” (2021) and “Have You Seen Me?” (2020). The eighth book in her Bailey Weggins mystery series, "Such a Perfect Wife," was nominated for an International Thriller Writers Award. Her next psychological thriller, “The Second Husband,” will be released in June.

She is editor of the “Mystery Writers of America Cookbook,” a collection of recipes from the field’s top-selling authors.

White has authored several popular career books, including “I Shouldn’t Be Telling You This: How to Ask for the Money, Snag the Promotion, and Create the Career You Deserve,” and the Wall Street Journal best-seller “Why Good Girls Don’t Get Ahead but Gutsy Girls Do.”

An English major, White starred as one of the mouseketeers in the musical “Disnetia” and was an editor for the Idol literary magazine, for which she researched and wrote the story of Alice Van Der Veer, the ghost alleged to haunt Jackson’s Garden. She was also a member of the student senate and the first woman elected to the All College Senate.

While at Union, White won Glamour magazine’s Top Ten College Women Contest and appeared on the magazine’s cover her senior year.

White is married to Brad Holbrook, an actor and former TV news anchor. They have two children.

For more information about Commencement, including previous speakers, visit the website.