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Mark K. Shriver named 2014 Commencement speaker

February 17, 2014 | By Nick Alexopulos

Commencement Speaker Mark Shriver
Mark K. Shriver, senior vice president for strategic initiatives and senior advisor to the CEO of Save the Children

Mark K. Shriver, senior vice president for strategic initiatives and senior advisor to the CEO of Save the Children, will deliver the commencement address at Loyola University Maryland's 162nd Commencement Exercises at 11 a.m. on Saturday, May 17, 2014, at the Baltimore Arena.

Shriver will be honored with the President's Medal, which recognizes outstanding contributions to Loyola and to the greater community.

In his leadership role with Save the Children, Shriver oversees a cross-agency effort to motivate and mobilize Americans to make children at home and abroad a national priority. Save the Children is a non-profit organization that advocates for and achieves large-scale change for children with a focus on health, education, and emergency preparedness.

"As members of an institution committed to and strengthened by Jesuit values, our community shares a deep appreciation for Mark Shriver's lifelong commitment to advancing critical social justice initiatives focused on the needs of children," said Rev. Brian F. Linnane, S.J., president of Loyola. "I am confident his address will further inspire the Class of 2014 to go forth from their transformative educational experience at Loyola and pursue personal and professional endeavors that lift up others."

Shriver joined Save the Children in 2003 as vice president for U.S. programs and created the agency's early childhood development, literacy, and health programs in the United States. Under his leadership, the programs expanded to 220 schools in 17 states, benefitting 165,000 children, including more than 400 children at four Head Start centers. In 2005, Shriver created Save the Children's domestic emergencies programs to ensure the safety and wellbeing of children before, during, and after disaster strikes. He led a national coalition that convinced Congress to create the National Commission on Children and Disasters and was appointed to the Commission by Senator Harry Reid (D-NV). He was elected chairperson by his fellow commissioners and served in that role for the life of the Commission (2008-11).

Shriver was a member of the Maryland House of Delegates from 1994 to 2002. He was the first chair of the Joint Committee on Children, Youth and Families, and was appointed chair of the Children and Youth Subcommittee of Maryland's House Ways and Means Committee. He was repeatedly recognized as Outstanding Legislator of the Year by prominent advocacy and civic organizations.

In 1988, Shriver founded the innovative Choice Program, which serves delinquent and at-risk youth through intensive, community-based counseling. He subsequently created The Choice Jobs Program Inc., a private non-profit that trains, places, and supports former Choice clients in jobs, as well as The Choice Middle Schools Program, a model for keeping at-risk middle school children in school.

Shriver's New York Times and Washington Post bestselling memoir, A Good Man: Rediscovering My Father, Sargent Shriver, was published in June 2012 and received a 2013 Christopher Award.

Shriver received his B.A. from The College of the Holy Cross in 1986 and a Master's in Public Administration from Harvard University in 1993. He has received honorary degrees from Loyola, The College of the Holy Cross, and Wheelock College. He lives in Bethesda, Md., with his wife, Jeanne, and their three children, Molly, Tommy, and Emma.

More information about Loyola's 2014 Commencement Exercises is available at loyola.edu/commencement.

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