Montgomery Mayor Todd Strange will offer the keynote address at Troy University’s commencement exercises on Friday at the Troy Campus.
Nearly 1,000 students will have their degrees officially conferred in the 10 a.m. ceremonies, which require a free ticket for admission. This spring’s commencement marks one of the University’s largest graduation ceremonies, and the largest since the exercises were moved into Trojan Arena.
About 822 students are expected to receive an undergraduate degree, 155 the master’s degree, and 12 will received a doctorate degree. The graduating class represents 26 U.S. states and 22 nations.
Strange became the 56th mayor of the city of Montgomery on March 10, 2009, and was sworn in on March 23, 2009.
Strange graduated from Murphy High School in Mobile and received a bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of Montevallo. Prior to becoming mayor, Strange served as chairman of the Montgomery County Commission for nearly five years. He also served as former president, CEO and co-owner of Blount Strange Automotive Group where he managed hundreds of employees.
As former director of the Alabama Department of Commerce (formerly known as the Alabama Development Office), Strange coordinated many efforts that brought major industries to Alabama, including the Hyundai Motor Manufacturing of Alabama’s facility in Montgomery. He also served as former senior vice president of administration for Blount International, Ltds., former president and CEO at Blount Development Corporation and several leadership roles with South Central Bell Company (now AT&T).
Strange’s extensive involvement in the community includes chairman of the Capital City Club, member of the board of directors and former vice-chairman of the Montgomery Business Committee for the Arts, and chairman of the board of trustees at University of Montevallo. He was also former chairman of the University of Montevallo National Alumni Association, former president and campaign chairman for Montgomery Area United Way, former chairman of the board of directors for the Montgomery Area Chamber of Commerce, former president of the Alabama Institute for the Deaf and Blind Foundation, former board chairman of the Montgomery’s Riverfront Development Committee, and former chairman of the Montgomery Riverfront Alliance.
Strange has received numerous awards and honors for his visionary and progressive leadership. His awards include Business and Professional Women Boss of the Year, March of Dimes’ River Region Citizen of the Year, AUM Outstanding Community Leader Award, and Time Magazine’s Quality Dealer Award for Alabama.
He is married to the former Linda Davis. They have two daughters, Jennifer Strange Crumpton and Elizabeth Strange Burt.