WASHINGTON, Feb. 21, 2017 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Combat veteran, Purple Heart recipient and U.S. Sen. Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), M.A. '92, will deliver the George Washington University's commencement address before an audience of approximately 25,000 graduates, friends and family members on May 21. The ceremony will be held on the National Mall in Washington, D.C.
"Sen. Duckworth is one of the George Washington University's most distinguished alumni. From her military service to her tireless advocacy on behalf of veterans, women and families, Sen. Duckworth has dedicated her life to serving her country. She embodies a spirit of service and sacrifice that has inspired our many GW veterans and our university as a whole," said George Washington University President Steven Knapp.
Sen. Duckworth was elected to the Senate in 2016 after serving two terms in the House of Representatives. While serving in the House, Sen. Duckworth was a member of the House Armed Services Committee and helped pass several policies to help veterans. As a senator, she is continuing her lifelong mission of supporting, protecting and keeping promises made to veterans.
"I went to GW in part because of its outstanding record educating students in international relations, something that is as relevant and important today as it has ever been," said Sen. Duckworth. "GW helped me build a foundation for everything I've done since graduating, whether in the military, at the Department of Veterans Affairs or—now—in the Senate. I'm so grateful for the opportunities that I've had and the role my alma mater played in them, but I never anticipated giving the commencement address being one of them. I'm humbled by this invitation and look forward to encouraging my fellow alums to go out and make a difference in the world."
Sen. Duckworth is a former assistant secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs and was among the first Army women to fly combat missions during Operation Iraqi Freedom.
The George Washington University is the only university to hold its graduation ceremony on the National Mall, and this year's ceremony will take place on the grounds of the Washington Monument.
Previous GW Commencement speakers include Apple CEO Tim Cook, award-winning actress and alumna Kerry Washington, former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, then-First Lady Michelle Obama, former President George H.W. Bush and former First Lady Barbara Bush, then-First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton and world-renowned chef and humanitarian José Andrés.
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SOURCE George Washington University