FAMU Announces Spring 2023 Commencement Speakers 

Calvin Mackie, Ph.D.
Marcia Fudge
Harry Williams

TALLAHASSEE – Florida A&M University (FAMU) announces three speakers for its spring commencement ceremonies at the Al Lawson Jr. Multipurpose Center and Teaching Gymnasium, 1800 Wahnish Way, Tallahassee.

During the May 5 and May 6 ceremonies, the University will confer more than 1,200 undergraduate and graduate degrees to students from 14 colleges and schools.

“We are fortunate to have three talented speakers to celebrate the accomplishments of our spring 2023 graduates. Calvin Mackie, Ph.D., Secretary Marcia Fudge and Harry Williams, Ph.D., all have a proven track record of commitment to education, public service and the common good,” said FAMU President Larry Robinson, Ph.D.

At the 6 p.m. Friday, May 5 ceremony, Mackie, president & chief executive officer (CEO) of STEM NOLA, will deliver the keynote address to graduates from the College of Education; College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Institute of Public Health; School of Allied Health Sciences; and School of the Environment.

Mackie is an award-winning inventor, author, former engineering professor, internationally renowned speaker, and entrepreneur. In 2013, he founded STEM NOLA, a non-profit organization created to expose, inspire, and engage communities in the opportunities in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM).

In 1990, he graduated Magna Cum Laude from Morehouse College with a Bachelor of Science degree as a member of the prestigious Phi Beta Kappa National Honor Society. Simultaneously, he was awarded a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from Georgia Tech, where he subsequently earned his master’s and doctorate in Mechanical Engineering in 1996.

At the 9 a.m. Saturday ceremony, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Secretary Fudge will address graduates from the College of Social Sciences, Arts and Humanities and the School of Architecture & Engineering Technology. There will also be a Military Commissioning ceremony.

Fudge served as U.S. Representative for the 11th Congressional District of Ohio from 2008 to March 9, 2021. She is a past chair of the Congressional Black Caucus. As a member of Congress, Fudge earned a reputation of tackling the unique challenges of her district by working with her congressional delegation and across political ideologies.

In 1999, Fudge was elected the first female and first African American mayor of Warrensville Heights, Ohio, and served for two terms. As a former mayor, Fudge has seen firsthand the need for economic development and affordable housing. She advocates for policies and programs that can adapt to meet a community’s unique housing challenges. She is committed to making the dream of homeownership – and the security and wealth creation that comes with it – a reality for more Americans.

During the 2 p.m. Saturday, May 6 ceremony, Williams, Thurgood Marshall College Fund CEO and president, will address graduates from the College of Agriculture and Food Sciences;    FAMU-FSU College of Engineering; College of Law; College of Science and Technology; School of Business and Industry; School of Journalism & Graphic Communication; and School of Nursing.

Williams was president of Delaware State University for eight years. He previously held senior positions at the University of North Carolina General Administration, Appalachian State University, and North Carolina A&T State University.

He earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Appalachian State University, a doctorate from East Tennessee State University.

As head of TMCF, the nation’s largest organization exclusively representing the Black college community, Williams concluded dedicated talent development partnerships with leading corporations such as The Boeing Company, Medtronic, Visa, Ally Financial, and Hennessy USA.

He also places a strong emphasis on creating bipartisan alliances. TMCF has been at the forefront, leading on every significant national level victory for HBCU’s, earning respect and trust from elected and appointed leaders on both sides of the aisle in Congress and the White House.

The Lawson Center’s doors will open two hours before the ceremonies begin. Tickets are not required.