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Defense Secretary Robert Gates to be 126th Commencement Ceremony Speaker


(April 12, 2010) – Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates, a former president at Texas A&M University, will be the featured speaker during Morehouse’s 126th Commencement ceremony at 8 a.m. on the Century Campus on May 16.

Gates, who has served four presidents as Defense secretary, Central Intelligence Agency director and deputy national security adviser, spent 27 years as an intelligence professional. He is the only career officer in CIA history to rise from an entry-level employee to become director.

Before President George W. Bush nominated Gates to become secretary of Defense in 2006, Gates was president at Texas A&M from 2002 to 2006. A long-time lecturer and professor, Gates had been the interim dean of the University’s George Bush School of Government and Public Service from 1999 to 2001.

“Secretary Gates has led an exemplary life – one characterized primarily by decades of service to our country,” said President Robert M. Franklin ’75. “He has served the United States Air Force, the Central Intelligence Agency, the Pentagon, the White House and Texas A&M University. All together, Gates embodies Morehouse’s commitment to ethical leadership, public service and service to the global community.”

Gates will receive the honorary Doctor of Laws, as will U.S. Rep Sanford Bishop ‘68. Retiring Tuskegee University President Benjamin Payton will receive an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters. Bishop also will give a special charge to the graduates.

President Emeritus Walter Massey ’58, who is now chairman of the board for Bank of America Corporation, will be presented a Presidential Citation.

Commencement Website >>

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