General Peter Pace to deliver Excelsior College Commencement address on July 8

General Peter Pace, USMC (Ret.), 16th chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, will deliver the keynote address at Excelsior College Commencement on July 8, 2016 at the Empire State Plaza in Albany, New York.

Born in Brooklyn, New York and raised in Teaneck, New Jersey, Pace was commissioned in June 1967, following graduation from the United States Naval Academy. On September 30, 2005, Pace was sworn in as 16th chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. In this capacity, he served as the principal military advisor to the President, the Secretary of Defense, the National Security Council and the Homeland Security Council. Prior to becoming chairman, he served as vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Pace also holds the distinction of being the first Marine to have served in either of these positions.

During his distinguished career, Pace held command at virtually every level, beginning as a Rifle Platoon Leader in Vietnam. He also served in Europe, Japan, Thailand, South Korea and Somalia. In June, 2008, Pace was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest civilian honor a President can bestow.

General Peter Pace retired from active duty on October 1, 2007, after more than 40 years of service in the United States Marine Corps. He is currently serving on the board of directors of several corporate entities involved in management consulting, private equity and IT security. He holds a master’s degree in business administration from George Washington University, attended the Harvard University Senior Executives in National and International Security program, and graduated from the National War College.

Excelsior College, founded in 1971, enables the success of working adults by removing the obstacles to their educational goals.  The College is home to five schools and multiples institutes and centers, and offers multiple pathways to degree completion, including online coursework, the acceptance of credit in transfer, prior learning assessment, and credit by examination. Excelsior has a student body of more than 40,000 and has graduated more than 160,000 worldwide in its 45 year history.

Excelsior also has a long history of service to the military and veteran communities. Currently, 40 percent of the student body comprises active duty personnel or veterans. The College also has a number of strategic partnerships with military and veterans organizations, including the Department of New York, Arizona, California, Hawaii, Nevada, South Carolina, and Vermont state VFWs that offer reduced tuition and fees for veterans and their spouse/domestic partner. The school’s Center for Military Education and Lt. Col. Bryant A. Murray Veterans Center offers a wide-range of financial, educational, advisement and mental health resources to students and alumni.

Each July, hundreds of Excelsior College graduates, accompanied by their friends, family, and benefactors, gather in Albany, New York for Excelsior College’s Commencement.  For many of these individuals, Commencement marks their first opportunity to meet their classmates, advisors, and instructors in person.

This year’s Commencement begins at 3 pm EST on July 8, 2016. To learn more, visit