Davis to Speak at Summer Commencement

Thursday, July 30, 2009

The University of West Georgia will host its summer commencement ceremony on Saturday, August 1, at 9:30 a.m. in The Coliseum.  The ceremony's guest speaker will be Chancellor of the University System of Georgia Erroll B. Davis, Jr.

A total of 293 undergraduates and 232 graduate students will walk across the stage to receive their diplomas. The president of the university, Dr. Beheruz N. Sethna, will preside over the event as Master of Ceremonies.

As chancellor of the university system, Davis is responsible for the state’s 35 public colleges and universities, approximately 280,000 students, 40,000 faculty and staff, and an annual budget of approximately $6 billion.

Davis and his wife, Elaine, are dedicated to educational causes and established the Davis Family Foundation, which makes annual grants to students in need. A native of Pittsburgh, Davis earned a Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering from Carnegie Mellon University and an M.B.A. in finance from the University of Chicago.

The chancellor’s honors and awards include recognitions in Georgia Trend’s “100 Most Influential Georgians,” the Atlanta Business Chronicle’s “100 Most Influential Atlantans” and as one of the “75 Most Powerful Blacks in Corporate America” in Black Enterprise magazine. Davis is also a recipient of the Carnegie Mellon Alumni Distinguished Service Award.

Davis accepted the position of chancellor in 2006 after serving as chairman of the board of the Alliant Energy Corporation – an energy holding company with $8.3 billion in total assets and annual operating revenues of $3 billion. Davis joined Alliant in 1998 as president and CEO, retired from his dual roles in Alliant in July 2005, and retained the chairman's post until his move to Georgia.

Davis’ executive experiences in higher education includes serving as a member of the University of Wisconsin System Board of Regents from 1987 to 1994 and as a former chairman of the board of trustees of Carnegie Mellon University, of which he is a life member. He presently serves as a member of the Southern Regional Education Board and the Board of Trustees of the University of Chicago.

For more information on the commencement ceremony, call 678-839-6464.