The founder and CEO of a leading Chicago public relations firm will be the featured speaker at the University of Illinois Springfield’s spring commencement ceremonies later this month.
Thom Serafin, a UIS alum and head of Serafin & Associates Inc., will deliver the address at ceremonies beginning at 4 p.m. Saturday, May 16, at the Prairie Capital Convention Center.
Of the 1,606 students eligible to graduate, more than 950 are expected to participate in the ceremony.
The number of graduates is the most in the history of the university.
Before establishing Serafin and Associates in the late 1980s, Serafin enjoyed a successful career as a political/legislative correspondent, which began when he covered the Illinois General Assembly for network radio.
He has advised numerous high-profile national and state policymakers. Serafin served as press secretary for U.S. Sen. Alan Dixon and U.S. Rep. Dan Rostenkowski and was the Illinois campaign manager for U.S. Sen. Gary Hart’s 1988 presidential bid.
UIS Chancellor Susan Koch said she's delighted that Serafin will address the graduates.
“His outstanding record of achievement in public affairs and communications is a testament, not only to Thom’s exceptional abilities, but also to the great value that his two UIS degrees have brought to his career and his community,” she said.
Serafin received a bachelor’s degree in communication from UIS in 1973 and a master’s degree in public affairs reporting in 1993. As an undergraduate, he assisted his professor and mentor, future U.S. Sen. Paul Simon, in launching the UIS Public Affairs Reporting program (PAR).
This article appeared in The State Journal-Register on May 5, 2015.
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