Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, a native of Fairfax County who went on to careers in the U.S. Army and the legal profession before entering politics, will give the main commencement address at the University of Richmond on May 6.
McDonnell was sworn in as the 71st governor of the Commonwealth on Jan. 16, 2010, after being elected with nearly 59 percent of the vote and receiving the most votes of any candidate for governor in Virginia history.
The main commencement ceremony, when undergraduate and graduate students from the School of Arts & Sciences, Robins School of Business and Jepson School of Leadership Studies receive their degrees, is scheduled for 2 p.m. in the Robins Center, the 9,000-seat athletic arena on campus. Graduates of the School of Law and the School of Professional and Continuing Studies receive degrees in separate ceremonies on May 5.
McDonnell is a graduate of the University of Notre Dame (B.B.A.), Boston University (M.S.B.A.) and Regent University (J.D. and M.A.). In addition, he has received an honorary doctor of laws degree from the College of William and Mary and an honorary doctor of humane letters from Virginia Commonwealth University.
Upon graduating from law school in 1989 he served as a Virginia Beach prosecutor. McDonnell was elected to the Virginia House of Delegates in 1991 and served 14 years representing Virginia Beach. He was elected attorney general in 2005.
Job creation and economic development remain McDonnell’s top priorities, a Governor’s Office spokesperson said. Virginia’s unemployment rate has fallen from 7.2 percent to 5.7 percent during McDonnell’s term to date. Virginia was recently named by CNBC as “The Best State for Business” in the country.Admission to the university’s three commencement ceremonies is free and open to the public. For more information, visit commencement.richmond.edu.