NEA President Reg Weaver to deliver Spring Commencement address

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

ORANGEBURG – This year, more than 400 SC State students will make the transition to SC State alumni at the institution’s annual Spring Commencement Ceremony.

Commencement will be held at 7 p.m. on Friday, May 11, 2007, at the Oliver C. Dawson Stadium. The commencement address will be delivered by Reg Weaver, president of the 3.2-million member National Education Association.

Degree candidates participating in the ceremony will represent the College of Business and Applied Professional Sciences; College of Education, Humanities and Social Sciences; College of Science, Mathematics and Engineering Technology; and the School of Graduate Studies.

NEA President Reg Weaver will deliver May 11 Commencement addressReg Weaver is serving his second term as president of the 3.2 million-member National Education Association (NEA) – the nation’s largest professional employee organization.

As a middle school science teacher and 30-year classroom veteran, Weaver has been a lifelong advocate for quality public schools. He served as president of his local in Harvey, Ill., president of the NEA affiliate in Illinois, and now leads one of the most influential education organizations in the nation.

He travels nationally and internationally, working tirelessly as an ambassador for public education and advocating for the basic right of every student to attend a great public school. North Carolina’s Shaw University recently awarded an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters to Weaver for “his world-class leadership in the efforts to educate children.”

Weaver serves as vice president of Education International, a 348-member organization representing more than 29 million teachers and education workers in 166 countries. He travels to meetings of Education International and national education unions around the world. He has also addressed conferences and forums sponsored by numerous national organizations, including the U.S. Conference of Mayors, National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), National Council of La Raza (NCLR), Rainbow Push Coalition, League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC), ASPIRA, and ACORN.

A recognized expert on public education issues, Weaver has testified before Congress on federal education policy and frequently provides a critical voice on public education for national publications, including The New York Times, USA Today and The Washington Post, along with decision-maker publications, such as Congressional Quarterly, Education Week and Education Daily. Weaver regularly appears on such news programs as CNN “Headline News,” C-Span’s “Washington Journal,” and ABC “World News Tonight.” He has been invited to discuss pressing education issues on National Public Radio’s “News & Notes,” CNN Radio Network, AP Radio Network and others.

Weaver serves on the executive board of the National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education and on the board of governors for the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies. He is a member of the board of directors of the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards, and he is an honorary life member of the National Parent Teachers Association.

He also served on the Illinois State Board of Education's Blue Ribbon Committee on the Improvement of Teaching as a Profession, the Illinois Commission for the Improvement of Elementary and Secondary Education, the Administrator's Academy, the Illinois Project for School Reform Advisory Council, the North Central Regional Educational Laboratory Advisory Committee, the Joint Committee on Minority Student Achievement, the Illinois Literacy Council, and the Task Force on At-Risk Youth.

His commitment and contributions to public education haven’t gone unnoticed. He has been named one of Ebony Magazine’s 100 Most Influential Black Americans for his national influence. He is the recipient of the 2005 Spirit of Liberty Award presented by People for the American Way, as well as the U.S. Hispanic Leadership Institute’s 2006 George Meany Latino Leadership Award. Weaver’s recent honors also include the 2006 Chairman’s Award for Educational Leadership presented by 100 Black Men of America, Inc. and the Congressional Black Caucus Education Braintrust’s 2006 Great Points of Light Award. Weaver also received the USAction Progressive Leadership Award, the National Conference of Black Mayors President’s Award, the Ebony Magazine Influential Black Educators Award, and the Illinois Education Association's Human Relations Award.

Back home, Weaver is listed on the Danville (Ill.) High School Wall of Fame and serves as an honorary member of the Advisory Board for the Department of Educational Leadership at Roosevelt University, which is his alma mater.

Weaver earned his Bachelor of Science degree in special education for the physically challenged at Illinois State University. He received a master's degree from Roosevelt University in Chicago.