Artist Greg Crumbly to Speak at Hodges University’s 2018 Commencement Ceremony

Graduation Ceremony

Hodges University is proud to announce that world-renowned artist Gregory Crumbly will deliver its 2018 commencement address on Sunday, June 10. This year’s commencement will be held at Germain Arena in Estero at 4:00 p.m.

Crumbly is known for his portrait paintings of African American historical figures, including Martin Luther King Jr., Henry Osian Flipper, Malcolm X and Barack Obama. His talent for drawing and painting began at a young age after suffering a severe hand injury at the age of 12. Possessing a passion for art, he attended the Governor’s School for the Arts at Bucknell University and graduated with a degree in psychology and art history in 1980.

Joining the United States Army after graduation, he served in Panama, Nicaragua and Grenada as an Army Ranger. After his helicopter was shot down, he decided to leave the military in 1988 and join the Pittsburgh Police Department as a forensic detective, drawing sketches and helping police identify and apprehend criminals. In 1994, he was shot in the leg and underwent eight operations that left him unable to serve in the field. Traveling to Tampa to work a case, he opted to stay, retiring in 1999.

In addition to hearing from Crumbly, students and attendees will hear from faculty speaker Dr. Afsaneh Farhadi, who serves as the program chair of Hodges’ School of Liberal Studies. She recently earned her Ph.D. in informational technology and distance education from Nova Southeastern University. She possesses a bachelor’s degree in English literature and Russian studies from Wheaton College and a master’s degree in English language and literature from Northeastern University.

The commencement audience will also hear from student speaker Christin Olsen, who is graduating with a Bachelor of Science in criminal justice. A United States Army veteran, she spent 11 years as a military police officer, serving in Afghanistan from 2010 to 2011 before being medically retired in June 2016.

Since the founding of Hodges University in 1990, the total number of degrees conferred is more than 10,000, which includes this year’s estimated 437 conferred degrees. For more information, visit or call (800) 466-0019.

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