SD Governor is DSU commencement speaker
Dakota State University spring commencement is May 7, at 10:30am in the DSU Fieldhouse. Dakota State will award 179 baccalaureate, 34 masters, 3 doctor of science, and 34 associate degrees. Among the graduates will be two ROTC candidates: Addison Kisling, Air Force ROTC, and James Farrell, Army ROTC.
South Dakota Governor Dennis Daugaard will serve as commencement speaker. The Governor took office in January 2011, after serving as lieutenant governor in the Mike Rounds administration for two terms. He graduated from the University of South Dakota in 1975 with a bachelor of science in government. He graduated from Northwestern University School of Law in Chicago in 1978 and practiced law in Illinois for three years before returning to South Dakota. From 1981 to 1990, he worked for what is now US Bank in Sioux Falls, and was ultimately promoted to Vice President. In 1990, he left the bank to become the Development Director of the Children's Home Foundation, the fundraising arm of Children's Home Society of South Dakota. In 2002, he became Executive Director of Children's Home Society of South Dakota. He left Children's Home Society in October 2009 to focus full-time on his campaign for governor.
Madison mayor and Dakota State graduate Gene Hexom is receiving the Distinguished Service Award. Hexom graduated in 1959 with a bachelor of science in education. He taught for one year at Dell Rapids Public High School, then joined East River Electric Power Cooperative and worked for over 36 years in public and member relations, and sales and marketing positions until his retirement in 1997. Since then, Hexom has served as a substitute teacher in area schools, and has done sports, feature and historical writing. He is involved in lay ministry with local churches and sings with several area groups. He has served on numerous professional and civic advisory boards, volunteering his time in his many areas of interest. During DSU's 125th anniversary celebration in 2006, Hexom volunteered to portray former president of Dakota State General William Henry Harrison Beadle. He has served as mayor of Madison since 2006.
Members of the class of 1961 celebrating the 50 year anniversary of their graduation will also be recognized at commencement.