Lt. Governor Garlin Gilchrist II, a computer engineer, public servant and the first African-American to be elected to Michigan’s second highest office, will deliver the keynote address for Alma College’s 132nd commencement ceremony.
Approximately 290 graduation candidates will receive their undergraduate degrees at 2 p.m. Saturday, April 20 in the Hogan Center, Art Smith Arena.
“Lt. Governor Gilchrist’s successful career has spanned the areas of computer engineering, community development and politics,” says Alma College President Jeff Abernathy. “He has dedicated his career to using technology to solve problems and improve the lives of Michigan families while advocating for equality and justice. I’m delighted that our graduating seniors will have this opportunity to hear from him as they think about their lives beyond Alma.”
A native Detroiter, Gilchrist attended the University of Michigan and earned a bachelor’s degree in computer science engineering. He graduated with honors and later had a successful career in Seattle as a software engineer at Microsoft.
While in Washington, Gilchrist served as a social media manager for the 2008 Obama presidential campaign. He later spearheaded equity and justice campaigns for MoveOn.org in Washington, D.C., and served as the first-ever director of innovation and emerging technology for the City of Detroit.
Gretchen Whitmer selected Gilchrist as her running mate for the 2018 Michigan gubernatorial election. After winning the general election, they took office on Jan. 1, 2019.