Morgan State University announces the 2017 December Commencement Speaker

by Devon Ashby, Staff Writer

With December commencement just two weeks away, Morgan State University announced that Maryland’s Lieutenant Governor is serving as this year’s commencement speaker.

Morgan President David Wilson announced that Boyd K. Rutherford will deliver the commencement address Dec. 15 in the Talmadge Hill Field House, the last of three commencement ceremonies marking the university’s sesquicentennial year.

Lt. Governor Rutherford graduated from Howard University in 1979 with a bachelor’s degree in political science, and he earned his law degree and a master’s in communication from the University of Southern California in 1990.

Former president George W. Bush nominated Rutherford for assistant secretary for administration for the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), which the United States Senate unanimously confirmed him for.

Rutherford, a member of the Republican Party, became the state of Maryland’s third consecutive African-American lieutenant governor, as he was voted into office alongside fellow Republican Larry Hogan. He would take on a larger role, acting as governor, when Hogan was diagnosed with leukemia and forced to take a leave of absence.

President Wilson praised the lieutenant governor for his “staunch support” of Morgan in his time in office.

“He has not been a stranger to our campus, as many in the Morgan community have grown accustomed to his presence in support of some of our biggest achievements,” Wilson said in a statement Thursday. “As a graduate of an HBCU who has used that experience to propel himself through life, he will be able to deliver a message that will resonate uniquely with our students as they move forward to become the leaders of tomorrow.”

The commencement is scheduled for Friday, Dec. 15 in the Talmadge Hill Field House, starting at 9:30 a.m.

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