Pepperdine to Celebrate Class of 2023 at Spring Commencement Ceremonies
Robert C. O'Brien
Troy V. Senik
Pepperdine University will host multiple commencement ceremonies in April and May for 2023 graduates of Seaver College, the Caruso School of Law, the Graziadio Business School, the Graduate School of Education and Psychology, and the School of Public Policy. The ceremonies will feature distinguished speakers from a variety of fields and industries to celebrate and inspire students as they conclude their studies and move into the next phase of their lives. All ceremonies will be held in Alumni Park on the Malibu campus.
Michael A. Cusumano
Ned L. Colletti, Jr.
On Friday, April 14, at 10:30 AM, the School of Public Policy commencement ceremony will feature Robert C. O’Brien, the chair of strategic advisory firm American Global Strategies LLC and a Partner Emeritus at the law firm Larson LLP, who will deliver the commencement address. O’Brien served as the 27th US national security advisor from 2019 to 2021 and is currently a distinguished senior fellow at the School of Public Policy, where he mentors future public leaders with his proven ability to create effective, valuable change within our nation and around the world.
A. Ronald Berryman
The School of Public Policy will also honor Troy V. Senik (MPP ’07), an author, media executive, former White House staffer, and policy leader, as the recipient of the Distinguished Alumnus Award. Senik is the cofounder of Kite & Key Media, a New York–based digital nonprofit, where he helps lead the organization’s mission to make public policy accessible to the general public through compelling and accessible videos.
Mark T. Cramer
The Graziadio Business School will hold its commencement ceremony on Saturday, April 15, at 10:30 AM. Michael A. Cusumano (MBA ’94, DBA ’22) will be honored with the Distinguished Alumnus Award and will also deliver the commencement address. Cusumano is the managing director of Cusumano Real Estate Group, a leading development and investment company in the Greater Los Angeles area, as well as an adjunct professor at the Graziadio Business School, where he has received the Best Supporting Faculty Award.
On Saturday, April 29, at 10:30 AM, Seaver College will hold its commencement ceremony, where A. Ronald “Ron” Berryman (’62, MBA ’67) will be honored with the Distinguished Alumnus Award. Berryman is the president and chief executive officer of Berryman and Company, a highly successful management consulting firm, as well as a member of the Graziadio Business School Board. He has served on the Pepperdine University Board for 20 years and was a founding member of the Alumni Leadership Council and the Black Alumni Council at Pepperdine, the latter of which he serves as Chair Emeritus. He and his wife, Jacqueline, have funded several scholarships, including the A. Ronald Berryman Endowed Scholarship, which benefits African American students at Pepperdine.
Ned L. Colletti, Jr., will give the Seaver College commencement address and receive an honorary doctorate. Colletti is a former Major League Baseball sports executive with 40 years of industry experience and has held leadership positions with the Chicago Cubs, the San Francisco Giants, and the Los Angeles Dodgers. He is currently a hockey scout for the San Jose Sharks and a professor in the Seaver College Communication Division, where he is the executive in residence in sport administration.
The Caruso School of Law will hold its commencement ceremony on Friday, May 19, at 10:30 AM, where Mark T. Cramer (JD ’98) will be honored with the Distinguished Alumnus Award. Cramer is a shareholder at full-service law firm Buchalter, PC, where he serves as chair of the firm’s class-action practice group in its Los Angeles office. Prior to joining the firm in 2013, Cramer was a partner at international law firm Kirkland & Ellis LLP. Cramer has served on the Caruso School of Law Board of Advisors since 2009 and also has taught as an adjunct professor and guest lecturer.
Martin Estrada, US Attorney for the Central District of California, will deliver the Caruso School’s commencement address. Estrada serves as the US Attorney for the Central District of California, the second-largest US Attorney’s Office in the nation. He oversees litigation regarding national security, public corruption, narcotics trafficking, civil rights violations, cybercrime, and terrorism, among other criminal and civil cases. Previously Estrada was a partner at Munger, Tolles & Olson LLP and an adjunct professor at Loyola Marymount University. He earned a bachelor of arts from the University of California, Irvine, in 1998 and his juris doctor from Stanford University in 2002.
Brittany N. Winters
On Saturday, May 20, the Graduate School of Education and Psychology will conclude the spring commencement season with two ceremonies. The Education Division’s ceremony will begin at 10 AM and will honor commencement speaker Stephen Birch (MDR ’17, EdD ’18) with the Distinguished Alumnus Award. Birch is the chief executive officer of the investment holding firm C4C Aviation Group, as well as the managing director of Flying Crown Land Group. Previously, he worked in the healthcare industry as senior vice president of business development at MedClean Technologies (previously Aduromed Industries) and served in leadership roles at Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia and General Electric.
The Psychology Division’s ceremony will begin at 2:30 PM. The commencement speaker, Brittany N. Winters (MA ’09, PsyD ’14), will be honored with the Distinguished Alumnus Award. Winters is the regional psychology services administrator for the western region of the US Department of Justice’s Federal Bureau of Prisons, and previously served as the deputy chief psychologist at ADX Florence, a high-security prison in Colorado. Winters’ successful efforts to implement evidence-based mental health treatment measures in correctional facilities earned her a nomination for the Outstanding Federal Law Enforcement Employee Award from the Women in Federal Law Enforcement Foundation.