Harvard Law School graduation festivities began on Class Day, Wednesday, May 23, and continued through Commencement Day on Thursday, May 24.

The Law School’s Class Day program began on Wednesday, May 23, on Holmes Field, in front of Langdell Library. United States Attorney General Eric Holder was chosen as Class Day speaker. Professor Bill Rubenstein, who was selected by the class of 2012 to receive the Sacks-Freund Teaching Award, delivered remarks at the ceremony, as did staff member Meg DeMarco (director of Student Affairs in the Dean of Students Office), recipient of the Suzanne L. Richardson Staff Appreciation Award. Several other students were recognized for their leadership.

Click here to view the full Class Day ceremony (requires QuickTime player)

All of the honorees were selected by the 2012 graduating class.

Harvard University’s 361st Commencement officially began on Thursday, May 24. The HLS Class of 2012 marched from the Law School campus to Tercentenary Theater in Harvard Yard at 7:15 a.m. The University-wide ceremony, in which President Drew Faust conferred the degrees upon the graduates, officially began at 9:45 a.m.

Massachusetts Congressman Barney Frank ’77 (D-MA) was the University Class Day Alumni speaker. Frank was a member of the Harvard class of ’61.

The Harvard Law School diploma ceremony and luncheon was held in front of Langdell Library, where Dean Martha Minow delivered remarks to the graduating class and presented each graduate with his or her diploma.

View the full Commencement ceremony (requires QuickTime player)

Commencement highlights:

‘Put your skills to use to define our future,’ Attorney General tells class (video)

The 82nd Attorney General of the United States, Eric H. Holder Jr., addressed the 2012 graduating class at Harvard Law School, urging the newly-minted lawyers to continue the tradition of service encouraged at Harvard Law School and to use their skills to define the country’s future.

Barney Frank ’77 addresses Harvard College graduates during Class Day (video)

This year, Harvard’s time-honored tradition of Class Day included an interesting twist: For the first time in years, two speakers—actor, writer, and comedian Andy Samberg, and U.S. Rep. Barney Frank ’61, J.D. ’77—took turns at the outdoor dais to offer the seniors parting words of wit and wisdom.

Rubenstein wins Sacks-Freund Award for Teaching Excellence (video)

Professor William Rubenstein ’86, the Sidley Austin Professor of Law, is this year’s winner of the prestigious Albert M. Sacks-Paul A. Freund Award for Teaching Excellence, an honor bestowed each spring by the Harvard Law School graduating class. The award recognizes teaching ability, attentiveness to student concerns and general contributions to student life at the law school.

Students honored at Class Day ceremony

A number of Harvard Law students received special awards this year during the 2012 Class Day exercises on May 23. The honored students were recognized for their outstanding leadership, citizenship, compassion and dedication to their studies and the profession.

Rajan Sonik ’12 wins pro bono service award

Rajan Sonik ’12 is the winner of this year’s Andrew L. Kaufman Pro Bono Service Award, recognized for performing the highest number of pro bono service hours in the Class of 2012. During his time at Harvard Law School, Sonik provided over 2,500 hours of free legal services.

Meg DeMarco receives staff appreciation award

Meg DeMarco, director of Student Affairs in the Harvard Law School Dean of Students Office, received the Suzanne L. Richardson Staff Appreciation Award during Class Day exercises on May 23. She was selected by the Class of 2012 for her work overseeing and supporting student organizations, journals, housing and the 1L Program.