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Pepperdine University Announces 2022 Commencement Speakers

April 21, 2022

Pepperdine University will host commencement ceremonies for Seaver College, the Caruso School of Law, the Graziadio Business School, the Graduate School of Education and Psychology, and the School of Public Policy on the Malibu campus throughout April and May. The ceremonies will feature a robust lineup of speakers who will address the graduates as they embark on the next chapter of their lives. Listed below is the full lineup of commencement speakers. 

School of Public Policy

Friday, April 22, 2022 | 10:30 AM 

Hattie Mitchell (MPP ’12) will be honored as the School of Public Policy’s distinguished alumnus and deliver the commencement address. Mitchell is the founder of Crete Academy, a nonprofit charter school that provides educational and other resources to children experiencing poverty or homelessness in South Los Angeles. The academy’s model incorporates the development of critical thinking, personal character, and appreciation for diversity into a larger goal of preparing young students for higher levels of education.

Graziadio Business School 

Saturday, April 23, 2022 | 10 AM

Thomas Magnuson (MBA ’89) will lead the Graziadio Business School’s commencement address as the school’s distinguished alumnus. Magnuson is the cofounder and chief executive officer of Magnuson Hotels, a franchise hotel organization that he and his wife formed in 2003 to help independently owned hotels expand and maximize their profitability. The organization was ranked as the number one hotel company in Inc. magazine’s 2009 and 2010 annual rankings of the 5,000 fastest-growing privately owned US companies and now serves thousands of hotel owners and guests worldwide. 

Seaver College

Saturday, April 30, 2022 | 10:30 AM 

Samuel D. Schmidt (’86, MBA ’87) will receive an honorary doctorate and deliver the commencement address to Seaver College’s Class of 2022. Following a life-altering crash in 2000 that rendered him a person with quadriplegia, Schmidt focused his energy on advocating for members of the disability community. He is chair of the board for Conquer Paralysis Now (CPN), a Las Vegas-based nonprofit that funds research and treatment efforts to find a cure for paralysis. In 2018, CPN opened DRIVEN NeuroRecovery Center, a resource for those with neurological disorders to receive therapy and use inclusively designed fitness equipment. Schmidt also serves on the board of directors for BraunAbility, which creates wheelchair-accessible vehicles adapted for more widespread mobility that are used in more than 70 nations.

Caruso School of Law

Friday, May 20, 2022 | 10 AM 

The Honorable Mary Murguia will deliver the commencement address to the Caruso School of Law Class of 2022. Nominated to the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit by former president Barack Obama, Murguia has served the court since 2011, and was named chief judge in 2021. Chief Judge Murguia was first appointed to the federal bench as a judge in the United States District Court for the District of Arizona, but her career in public service began upon her graduation from law school as an assistant district attorney in the Wyandotte County district attorney’s office. The Honorable Jeffrey S. Boyd (JD ’91) will also be recognized as a distinguished alumnus. Boyd serves as a justice on the Supreme Court of Texas, appointed to the seat in 2012 by governor Rick Perry and elected to six-year terms in 2014 and 2020. 

Graduate School of Education and Psychology

Saturday, May 21, 2022 | 10 AM and 2:30 PM

Ambassador Chesley Burnett "Sully" Sullenberger III will receive an honorary doctorate during the Education Division’s morning ceremony. With a long history of service and safety advocacy, Ambassador Sullenberger is best known for the exceptional courage and judgment he displayed in 2009 when he and his crew safely guided US Airways Flight 1549 to an emergency water landing in New York City’s Hudson River, during what has been called the “Miracle on the Hudson.” He was sworn in as US Representative to the International Civil Aviation Organization in 2021. 

Distinguished alumnus Edrick H. Dorian (PsyD ’03) will deliver the commencement address to the Psychology Division’s Class of 2022. Dorian oversees the Behavioral Sciences Services division of the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) as the organization’s chief police psychologist. His team of substance abuse counselors, a dietitian, and fellow police psychologists provides training, therapy, and crisis support for the department’s personnel. 

All commencement ceremonies will be hosted at Alumni Park at the Pepperdine University Malibu campus located at 24255 Pacific Coast Hwy, Malibu, CA 90263.

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