Mitt Romney named UVU 2015 commencement speaker

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OREM, Utah (ABC 4 Utah) The Board of Trustees at Utah Valley University has announced Mitt Romney, 2012 Republican Party presidential nominee, former governor of Massachusetts, and chief executive officer of the Salt Lake Organizing Committee for the 2002 Winter Olympics, will speak at the University’s 74th annual commencement April 30. UVU will also award honorary doctoral degrees to Romney and community advocate Pamela J. Atkinson and a posthumous honorary doctoral degree to former Utah Speaker of the House Becky Lockhart.

“We are honored to welcome Mitt Romney to our campus as our commencement speaker,” said UVU President Matthew S. Holland. “His achievements, both public and private, are inspiring and will underscore to our students the tremendous things that can be accomplished after graduation through hard work, continuous learning, and a sense of service. During the Salt Lake Olympics and as governor, civic leader, and husband and father, he has always been committed to making a difference in the lives of those around him and has done so in a most significant way. The valuable observations and suggestions he will share with our graduating students will undoubtedly be a highlight of our commencement celebration.”

The UVU Student Association recommended Romney as the 2015 commencement speaker to the Board of Trustees. “He was at the top of our wish list coming into the school year, and we were elated when he accepted our invitation earlier last fall,” said UVU student body president Tyler Brklacich. “We are thrilled our students will have the chance to hear from one of the nation’s leading figures in industry and public service.”

Romney was CEO of Bain & Company and later co-founded Bain Capital, a private equity firm that grew to become one of the largest investment firms in the nation. He stepped into the national spotlight in 1999 when he served as president and CEO of the Salt Lake Organizing Committee for the 2002 Winter Olympics. During Romney’s term as governor of Massachusetts from 2003 to 2007, he oversaw the reduction of a $3 billion deficit. He is credited with creatively addressing health-care reform that enjoyed broad, bi-partisan support, among other notable accomplishments. In 2012, he won the presidential nomination for the Republican Party.

The author of “No Apology: The Case for American Greatness” and co-author of “Turnaround: Crisis, Leadership, and the Olympic Games,” Romney was named one of Time’s most influential people in the world in 2012. Romney has a bachelor of arts from Brigham Young University and a joint juris doctor and master of business administration from Harvard University. He and his wife, Ann, are the parents of five sons and have 23 grandchildren.

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