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The Honorable L. Douglas Wilder will be VUU Commencement Speaker


The Honorable L. Douglas Wilder will be VUU Commencement Speaker
Dr. Lance D. Watson to Keynote Baccalaureate

(Richmond, VA) – Virginia Union University will hold its annual Commencement ceremony on Saturday, May 10, 2014 at Hovey Field beginning at 10:00 a.m. The Honorable L. Douglas Wilder, Former Governor of the Commonwealth of Virginia, will be the keynote speaker.

Wilder’s career in public service spans more than 40 years and includes several historical milestones, most notably becoming the first African-American to be elected governor in the United States. He led the Commonwealth of Virginia from 1990 to 1994 and was celebrated for his sound fiscal management and for balancing the state budget during difficult economic times. He also served as lieutenant governor from 1986 to 1990.

As a state senator representing Richmond from 1969 to 1985, Wilder became the first African-American state senator in Virginia since Reconstruction. And in 2004, he became the first African-American mayor elected by popular vote by all of the citizens of Richmond. He served as mayor from 2005 to 2009.

Currently, Wilder is a Distinguished Professor at Virginia Commonwealth University’s L. Douglas Wilder School of Government and Public Affairs. He earned a B.S. degree from Virginia Union University, a J.D. degree from the Howard University School of Law, and is the recipient of more than thirty-six honorary degrees.

Preceding Commencement, VUU’s Baccalaureate service will be held on Friday, May 9, 2014 at 6:00 p.m. in the Allix B. James Chapel of Coburn Hall. Dr. Lance D. Watson, Senior Pastor of Saint Paul’s Baptist Church, will serve as keynote speaker.

Watson serves a congregation of more than 12,000 members in three locations (Henrico, Richmond, and Petersburg). He is also chief visionary for the Saint Paul’s Baptist Church corporate affiliates, Destiny Child Development Center, Saint Paul’s Community Foundation and Nia, Inc. of Greater Richmond. Saint Paul’s has been noted by the Virginia General Baptist Association as one of the fastest growing churches in Virginia and as one of the fastest growing churches in the nation by Outreach Magazine.

Watson is a graduate of Wayne State University in Detroit, Michigan where he earned a B.S. in Psychology, B.A. in Philosophy and M.A. in Guidance and Counseling. He earned a Master of Divinity from the Samuel DeWitt Proctor School of Theology at Virginia Union University and a doctorate from the Presbyterian School of Christian Education at Union Theological Seminary in Richmond, Virginia.


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