We’re heading into graduation season, and that means it’s time to start doling out the honors. Herb Alpert will be awarded the UCLA Medal, the university’s highest honor, on June 16 at the UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music’s inaugural commencement ceremony. … Will Phil Anschutz have to call him Dr. Beckerman now? Dan Beckerman will deliver the commencement address at Pepperdine University’s Seaver College. He’ll also pick up an honorary doctor of humane letters degree. … Another keynote: Angella Nazarian will give the address to Woodbury University graduation ceremony on May 6. … Department of Friends in High Places. Bob Iger, Willow Bay, and their children bumped into Pope Francis while in Rome. The encounter, according to video from a news agency covering the pope and the Vatican, went something like this: “Holy Father, I’m Robert Iger, the chairman of Disney, and this is my family. Deepest respect for you. Your niece works for us in Buenos Aires, for Disney.” Pope Francis: “God bless you, and please pray for me.” … Patrick Soon-Shiong has joined the board of Viracta Therapeutics in San Diego. The seat came after his NantKwest led an $18.4 million Series B round in the drug maker seeking cures for Epstein Barr Virus-associated malignancies. … Jessica Alba put in some work at a Target in New Jersey, surprising shoppers by offering makeovers using Honest Co. makeup products. … Chris Sacca and Alexis Ohanian will join Alba at Collision’s May tech conference in New Orleans. … Rick Caruso has snagged Ali Kasikci, veteran of the Peninsula Beverly Hills and Belmond hotels, to lead the Rosewood Miramar Beach Montecito. The project, which Caruso said would be the priciest on the California coast, is under construction on the site of the old Miramar by the Sea Hotel. … Deutsch has picked up the marketing strategy, brand positioning, and creative campaigns for Slurpee maker 7-Eleven. “Our boldest pitch ideas were their favorites,” said Kim Getty. … Joining the effort to bring the Olympics to Los Angeles are Caruso, Dr. Dre (Andre Young), Placido Domingo, David Geffen, and Michelle King, who were named recently to the board of LA 2024. … Art dealer Perry Rubenstein has pleaded no contest to two felony counts of grand theft by embezzlement that grew out of allegations he bilked some clients, among them Michael Ovitz. The long-running saga involved allegations that Rubenstein sold two works by artist Richard Prince for Ovitz but never turned over the proceeds. … Some better art world news: Silicon Valley venture capitalist Bruce W. Dunlevie has joined the board of the J. Paul Getty Trust. … ICA LA (formerly the Santa Monica Museum of Art) has announced the addition of three board members – Honor Fraser, Michael Silver, and Helen Thorpe. … Thom Mayne has been appointed the first critic at large for the Pratt Institute’s graduate architecture and urban design program. … Pritzker Group co-founder J.B. Pritzker, who partners with his L.A.-based brother Tony, has announced he’ll be running for the Democratic nomination for governor of Illinois. … Elon Musk is getting more love from the Trump administration. Economic adviser Gary Cohn said that at a White House town hall meeting for business leaders he asked Musk about how best to construct transportation infrastructure. Musk pitched the Boring Co., which he started to carve tunnels, and Cohn was intrigued, CNBC reported. … Alexandra and Sean Parker will receive UCLA Mattel Children’s Hospital’s Philanthropic Leadership Award for their support of cancer and immune system research. Gwyneth Paltrow will receive its Kaleidoscope Award for her advocacy of healthful living. … Michael and Jane Eisner’s Eisner Foundation has handed out first-quarter grants totaling more than $1.5 million. … Michael Milken was in New York for Marvin Shanken’s “Night to Remember” charity cigar dinner to raise awareness and money for prostate cancer research. Milken sat with Rush Limbaugh, Ray Lewis, John Salley, and Rudy Giuliani. The event raised $1.6 million.
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