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Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry to offer keynote address at Spring Commencement April 30

Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry will offer keynote remarks to a graduating class nearly 900 strong on Saturday, April 30, as JU celebrates its Spring 2016 Commencement underneath the oaks on its Science Green.

Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry
Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry

Mayor Curry took office July 1, 2015, and was formerly chairman of the Florida Republican Party. He served as CEO for ICX Group Inc., is a summa cum laude graduate of The University of Florida, and is a member of numerous local and state civic organizations. (A full biography is below.)

The University has a proud tradition over its 82-year history of bringing important individuals to speak on campus, including President Lyndon Johnson, President Gerald Ford, anthropologist Margaret Mead, Chemistry Nobel Prize Winner Linus Pauling, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, Massachusetts Governor and 2012 Republican Presidential nominee Mitt Romney, Pepsico CEO Indra Nooyi, documentary filmmaker Ken Burns, and many more in the fields of business, the arts and civic and cultural life.

“To have such visionary figures on campus is always a great privilege, and it’s an especially proud moment when the most impactful leaders in our own surrounding region are here to share their unique insights with us,” said JU President Tim Cost. “Mayor Curry’s presence is another example of JU’s embrace of our community and the strong ties we have fostered with a broad array of private, civic and public figures, as we enhance our students’ educational experience both on campus and as a potent resource dedicated to advancing the progress of our outstanding region.”

Those planning to attend the ceremony should arrive early for a good seat. Live-streaming video of the event will be available at http://www.ju.edu/commencement. Look for live updates on Twitter at @JacksonvilleU, and use the hashtag #JUgrad for social media posts.

Graduates will assemble in Swisher Theater at 8:30 a.m., line up at 9 a.m. and process to the iconic Dolphin Sculptures behind the Howard Administration Building, where they will meet the Platform party just before the ceremony’s 9:30 a.m. start. The groups will all then be led in to the ceremony by a traditional bagpiper.

During the celebration, the Fred B. Noble Gold Medal for Scholarship, first awarded in 1957, will be given to the undergraduates who have earned the highest GPA in their class. The Senior Class Gift will be announced, and Capt. Neil Karnes, JU NROTC Commanding Officer, will present officer candidates for commissioning.

A Faculty Corner immediately following the celebration will be held in the shaded area on the lawn next to Founders Building, where students can meet up for photos with their favorite professors.

The Senior Stroll is set for 4 p.m. Friday, April 29, at Dolphin Plaza behind the Howard Building. All graduates are warmly welcomed for a group photo, champagne toast and festive march through campus to the Graduate Reception at 4:30 p.m. at the River House – sponsored by the JU Alumni Association. Light hors d’ oeuvres and refreshments will be served, with faculty and administration in attendance. Attire is business casual. Caps and cords are encouraged.

For more information on Spring 2016 Commencement, visit http://www.ju.edu/commencement.

Lenny Curry Biography

Mayor Lenny Curry, a native Floridian, is the 44th mayor of Jacksonville. In 2002, he co‐founded and served as CEO for the Jacksonville-based professional services firm ICX Group Inc. (ICX), which provides finance and accounting consultation, executive recruiting and staffing services. From 1994 to 2002, he practiced as a certified public accountant at PricewaterhouseCoopers, where he was a Senior Manager in the firm’s Jacksonville office. A Summa Cum Laude graduate of The University of Florida, Curry has been involved in a number of local and state civic organizations, including the Republican Party of Florida, Rotary Club of South Jacksonville, Southside United Methodist Church, Jacksonville Symphony Association, Big Brothers Big Sisters, the Jacksonville Housing Commission, and Junior Achievement, among others. He and his wife, Molly, have three children and live in the San Marco community.