Crit Blackburn Luallen, Kentucky’s 56th lieutenant governor and a Centre College alumna and trustee, will deliver Centre’s commencement address on Sunday, May 24.
The 192nd Commencement will feature an expected 328 graduates. The class includes a Fulbright winner, Parker Lawson ’15 of Louisville, Ky., who will spend next year teaching English in Spain. Also teaching English abroad is Lane Walker ’15 of Topeka, Kan. He will be in Minoh City in Osaka Prefecture, through the competitive Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) Program sponsored by the Japanese government.
Since graduating from Centre in 1974 with a major in studio art, Luallen has become one of the Commonwealth’s most experienced and admired public officials, winning praise from leaders on both sides of the aisle. She has worked with seven Kentucky governors in positions that have included state budget director and secretary of the governor’s executive cabinet. During two terms as elected state auditor, she led high-profile cases that exposed fraud and corruption in a number of government offices and subsequently returned millions of dollars to the state’s taxpayers. Her ancestry includes two 19th-century Kentucky governors, John J. Crittenden and Luke Blackburn, as well as Centre’s third president, Gideon Blackburn.
She will receive an honorary degree during the ceremony, as will Robert T. Brockman, chair and CEO of Reynolds and Reynolds Company, a leading supplier of auto dealership management tools. Brockman is a former chair of Centre’s board of trustees and a member of the Class of 1963.
Rick Axtell, Paul L. Cantrell Professor of Religion and college chaplain, will deliver the baccalaureate sermon, titled “Ever Eastward.” It will be his ninth baccalaureate sermon at Centre.
Baccalaureate will be held at 11 a.m. on May 25 in Newlin Hall of the Norton Center for the Arts.
Commencement will start at 3 p.m., also in Newlin Hall. All seats for Commencement are by ticket only.
by Diane Johnson
May 19, 2015