||Brad Meyer, Director of Public and Media Relations
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The Andersons President and CEO Addresses Graduates During Fall Commencement
Challenging graduates to begin another chapter in their life, Mike Anderson, President and Chief Executive Officer of The Andersons Inc., addressed the Owens Community College graduating class as the institution held its 26th annual Fall Commencement activities.
Serving as the keynote speaker, Anderson shared with the 348 Owens graduates - including 34 from the Findlay-area Campus - and the more than 2,700 family, friends and relatives in attendance about the importance of taking the next step in a life that begins tomorrow morning.
"As you begin the next stage of your life that will take each of you in different directions, I hope you never forget the common bonds and the special friendships that have developed, the learning that has occurred, and what has helped you develop as a person," Anderson said during his commencement speech.
"Owens Community College is honored to have such a prominent speaker join in celebrating the hard work and achievements of our graduating class," said Gary Dettling, Owens Vice President of College Advancement. "Mr. Anderson is a leader within Northwest Ohio's business community, and provided students, families, staff and faculty with a very insightful message on such a special occasion."
Anderson has been President and Chief Executive Officer of The Andersons Inc. since January 1999. The Andersons started in 1947 with a 500,000-bushel grain elevator in Maumee, where the company is based. Today the company is a regional grain merchandiser with diversified businesses in agriculture, plant nutrient and industrial formulation and marketing, railcar marketing, turf products production, and general merchandise retailing that generate revenues of approximately $1.3 billion per year. The Andersons Inc. operates grain and production facilities throughout the Midwest and six retail stores in Northern and Central Ohio.
In 1978, Anderson began his career with The Andersons. He has held various positions within the Ag Group, including Grain Buyer, Grain Purchasing Manager, Grain Division Manager and Vice President and General Manager of the Grain Group. From 1994-96, he was Vice President and General Manager of the Retail Group. In September 1996, he became the President and Chief Operating Officer of The Andersons Inc.
Active in the community, he presently serves on the Board of Directors of The Andersons Inc., Interstate Bakeries Corp., Fifth Third Bank of Northwest Ohio and the Advisory Board of Findlay Davies Inc. In addition, he is a Trustee and Officer of the YMCA of Greater Toledo. Anderson also serves on the boards for St. Luke's Hospital, the Urban League of Greater Toledo and the Bishop's Education Council and has been a member of the Rotary Club of Toledo since 1993. He was the 1998 Campaign Chairman for the United Way of Greater Toledo.
Anderson graduated from Northwestern University in 1973 with a bachelor's degree in history and then achieved his master's degree in management from Northwestern in 1975. From 1975-78, he was an Auditor for Arthur Young & Co., earning his CPA in 1976. He and his wife, Carol, reside in Holland and have three children.
Joy Carpio of Perrysburg, a registered nursing program student, was selected as the Owens Community College class representative and addressed the graduates during the Fall Commencement ceremony.
An honors student at Owens and a native Pilipino, Carpio describes herself as an eccentric, hard working individual who likes to "go against the grain." Carpio's favorite hobbies include playing the piano, singing and listening to a variety of types of music.
Carpio, a 1990 Tarlac National High School graduate, is an active member of Perrysburg First Baptist Church and spends a large portion of her time playing the keyboard and singing in the choir. In addition, she has worked in the College's Library on the Toledo-area Campus throughout her three years at Owens.
Carpio credits the educational success she has achieved to her supportive family, as well as to her co-workers and fellow parishioners.
"I've been through some tough emotional times in my quest for education," she said. "My parents have been so supportive - emotionally and financially - even though they are far away. Everyone in the library and at church has also helped me to this point. They are like my second family."
The focus of her Commencement speech addressed her personal success story, as well as generally highlighting educational opportunities available at Owens and across the United States.
"There are numerous opportunities presented in this country that are not found elsewhere in the world," Carpio stated in her speech. "Take advantage of them. Utilize those resources. Some individuals, such as myself, would risk crossing borders, leaving families and assimilating a foreign culture just to have even a portion of that opportunity."
A mother of two, Carpio intends on pursuing a career as a registered nurse and looks forward to applying her skills in a "real-world" situation.
Of the 348 graduates, 89 graduated with honors and seven of those have earned perfect 4.0 grade point averages.
Owens Community College is the fastest-growing higher educational institution in Ohio with 29 consecutive semesters of enrollment increases. On the Toledo-area and Findlay- area campuses, Owens serves more than 44,000 credit and non-credit students, making it the number one choice for new college students. Owens is committed to providing small classes, personal attention and unmatched affordability. Owens Community College offers over 130 program areas in Agriculture, Business, Fine and Performing Arts, Health, Public Service, Skilled Trades, Industrial and Engineering Technologies. Owens students also can earn the first two years of a bachelor's degree with a smooth transfer to any area four-year college or university.