Gayle Goodson Butler, editor-in-chief of Better Homes and Gardens; Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring; and Mark Hourigan, president of Hourigan Construction, will deliver addresses at three of the four ceremonies comprising the University of Richmond’s 184th Commencement May 10–11.

Butler, a graduate of the university, will speak at the main commencement ceremony May 11 at 2 p.m., when undergraduates from the School of Arts and Sciences, Robins School of Business and Jepson School of Leadership Studies will receive degrees.

Herring will address graduates of the School of Law May 10 at 2 p.m., and Hourigan will give the commencement address for the MBA ceremony, May 10, 11:30 a.m. A graduating student, a faculty member and an alumnus will speak at the ceremony for the School of Professional and Continuing Studies, May 10 at 9 a.m. All ceremonies except the MBA ceremony will take place at the Robins Center. MBA graduates will receive their degrees in Queally Hall, Ukrop Auditorium.

The university expects to award 792 bachelor’s degrees, 45 master’s degrees, 41 MBA degrees and 153 juris doctor degrees.

Butler is executive vice president and creative content leader of Meredith Corporation’s National Media group and editor-in-chief of the Better Homes and Gardens brand. She also oversees content creation for BHG.com and BHG-branded mobile apps and special interest publications.

Under her direction, the magazine has expanded its editorial scope to include lifestyle categories such as entertaining, innovation and fashion. In 2011, she launched the BHG interactive digital edition. In 2012, Better Homes and Gardens was named AdWeek’s Hottest Magazine for Women, and cited for its outstanding social media program.

Butler is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Richmond, which awarded her the Alumni Association’s Distinguished Service Award in 2005. She is a 2012 recipient of the prestigious Matrix Award, given by New York Women in Communications to honor women of achievement. She was also inducted into the 2012 MIN (Media Industry News) editorial Hall of Fame. Butler lives in Des Moines, Iowa, and serves on the boards of the Greater Des Moines Botanical Gardens and the University of Richmond Alumni Association.

Herring became Virginia’s attorney general in January 2014. He oversees more than 425 employees who provide legal advice for the state government and its agencies and commissions, and conduct or assist in criminal investigations and prosecutions in such cases as Medicaid fraud, money laundering, theft of state property, and environmental and computer crimes.

Prior to becoming attorney general, Herring served in the state Senate for eight years, representing parts of Loudoun and Fairfax counties. After receiving bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Virginia, he graduated with honors from the University of Richmond School of Law before returning to Loudoun and establishing a successful law practice in Leesburg. 

Hourigan is president of Hourigan Construction, a full-service general contracting firm whose work includes office buildings, retail centers, call centers, hospitals, healthcare facilities, schools and industrial facilities in the Mid-Atlantic region. The company has offices in Richmond and Virginia Beach and works with leading architectural firms and subcontractors in the area. 

Hourigan has more than 30 years of experience in the industry and is a member of the advisory board for the School of Building Construction at Virginia Tech and past president of Associated General Contractors and Builders and Contractors Exchange.

He is immediate past chairman of the board of trustees of The Collegiate School and serves on boards for the Management Roundtable, Medical College of Virginia Foundation and Faison School for Autism. He is a graduate of Gettysburg College and The Richard S. Reynolds Graduate School of Business at the University of Richmond. 

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