Congresswoman Joyce Beatty to deliver summer commencement address
The Ohio State University today announced that Ohio Congresswoman Joyce Beatty will deliver the commencement address to summer graduates. Approximately 1,500 students will receive degrees during the ceremony, which begins at 2 p.m. on Sunday, Aug. 6, at the Jerome Schottenstein Center.
Prior to her service in the U.S. House of Representatives, Beatty was senior vice president of outreach and engagement at Ohio State and a member in the Ohio House of Representatives for five terms.
“We are honored to welcome Congresswoman Joyce Beatty, who represents Ohio State’s Columbus campus in the United States House of Representatives, to speak at our university’s 416th commencement ceremony,” said President Michael V. Drake. “As a small-business owner, steadfast public servant, passionate higher-education advocate and former senior vice president of The Ohio State University, Congresswoman Beatty will inspire our graduates to change the world for the better as they set out on their collective journey.”
In Congress, Beatty serves on the House Committee on Financial Services and is a member of two subcommittees: Housing and Insurance, and Oversight and Investigations. The Financial Services Committee oversees the entire financial services industry, including the nation’s banking, securities, insurance, and housing industries, as well as the work of the Federal Reserve, the U.S. Department of the Treasury and the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.
During her tenure in the Ohio House, Beatty rose to become the first female Democratic House Leader in Ohio’s history. She was instrumental in enacting legislation to require financial literacy in Ohio’s public school curriculum, to expand STEM education, and to secure funds to help under- and uninsured women access breast and cervical cancer treatment.
In 2014, Beatty’s efforts in Congress helped secure nearly $4 million in federal funds to address Columbus’ infant mortality rate, which is one of the highest in the country. In the same year, she also brought then-Department of Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan to Columbus to announce a $225 million project to revitalize the Near East Side, led by nearly $30 million in federal funds.
Beatty has been instrumental in getting legislation signed into laws to combat sex trafficking and assist teachers who pay out-of-pocket expenses for supplies. She has also introduced legislation that addresses improving financial knowledge in first-time homebuyers, free credit score availability and helping small businesses offer affordable housing.
She also played a major role, alongside other federal and local officials, in helping the City of Columbus win the Department of Transportation’s Smart City Challenge, a nationwide competition powered by a pledge of up to $40 million in federal funds to transform one mid-size city’s transportation network and make it safer, easier to use and more reliable.
Beatty is a committed supporter of the Congressional Black Caucus, concussion awareness and education legislation, and the Office of Minority and Women Inclusion, which seeks to increase the participation of women and minorities in all facets of the financial marketplace.
She has been named one of Ebony Magazine’s 150 most powerful African-Americans in the United States.
She is active in The Links, Inc., Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., National Coalition of 100 Black Women, Columbus Urban League, The American Heart Association – where she previously served on the board – and numerous other organizations.
Beatty earned a B.A. from Central State University and an M.S. from Wright State University, and completed all requirements but her dissertation for a doctorate at the University of Cincinnati.
During the ceremony, the university will award the honorary Doctor of Science degree to Leonard Susskind, the Felix Bloch Professor of Theoretical Physics at Stanford University, and director of the Stanford Institute for Theoretical Physics.
The university will award the Distinguished Service Award to Archie Griffin, former president and CEO of The Ohio State University Alumni Association and the nation’s only two-time Heisman Trophy winner.