Spring Commencement Speaker is Amazon Global Leader George Bandy, Jr.

News Date
bandy photo
By Hazel Scott/ASU

The Head of Circular Economy at Amazon George Bandy, Jr., is the keynote speaker for Alabama State University’s in-person spring commencement exercise.

The 303rd commencement for Spring 2021 graduates will be held across two ceremonies on Friday, May 7, at the ASU Stadium.  The first ceremony begins at 8:45 a.m. and will feature graduates from The Harold Lloyd Murphy Graduate School, the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences, the College of Education, the College of Visual and Performing Arts and University College. The second ceremony at 1:45 p.m. will include the Golden Class of 1971, The Harold Lloyd Murphy Graduate School, the College of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics, the Percy J. Vaughn Jr. College of Business Administration and the College of Health Sciences.

 The convocation, which will feature live and prerecorded elements, offers many of the elements associated with a traditional ceremony, including graduates traditional walk across the stage and the formal conferral of degrees.

To provide a safer environment due to the pandemic, social distancing and face coverings are required for all graduates and guests entering ASU Stadium. Hand sanitizer stations also will be strategically placed around the Stadium.

“The Alabama State University family is excited to celebrate the academic accomplishments of our students. We recognize that these are unprecedented times and we hope that our students understand how proud we are of their perseverance and drive to succeed,” said Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs, Carl S. Pettis, who serves as the chairman of the Commencement Convocation Committee.

Like last year, the ceremonies will be ticketed with graduates limited to five guests in order to provide for social distancing. For those  who cannot attend, the ceremonies will be livestreamed via www.facebook.com/asu.

ASU Stadium Gates will open approximately one hour before the event.  Guests should enter the Stadium through Gates A, B, C and E.  Candidates for graduation will enter through Gate D. 

More About the Speaker

Bandy’s role at Amazon is “to develop a strategy that assures that all of the ‘finite materials’ globally managed by Amazon remain in a technical or biological loop allowing Amazon to remain Earth’s most customer centric company.” 

Bandy is a global leader in environmental sustainability, circular economy and social responsibility. He has been responsible for executing the comprehensive concepts and practices of sustainability throughout several corporations, nonprofits and brands. He proactively identifies opportunities to position environmental, economic and socially responsible solutions for both the organizations and their customers so that, together, they can demonstrate the type of sustainability leadership that will result in a brighter future for all.

Bandy is highly sought after as a presenter on key topics such as the business of sustainability, biophilic design, social sustainability, circular economy, greening the supply chain, health and wellness in the built environment and innovative smart and healthy design. 

Bandy has received a number of honors for his work. He was recognized recently as a 2020 Living Future Hero. In 2018, he was a U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) Leadership Award recipient and was also honored with the inaugural Green Step People Award. 

Bandy is the former Chief Sustainability Officer for Mohawk Industries (2016-2020). Prior to that position, he was the Vice President of Sustainability for Interface (1999-2016). Bandy also served as the Sustainability Officer for the University of Texas Health Science Center in Houston (from 1994-1999). Bandy is a member of the board of directors for Green Business Certification Inc. (GBCI), an organization that independently recognizes excellence in green business industry performance and practice around the world. He has also been appointed to the board of directors for IIDA, a not-for-profit organization advancing sustainable interior design globally. He is the former Chairman of the Board of the USGBC and has also served on the board of Second Nature, a nonprofit that champions for higher education institutions to make the principles of sustainability fundamental to every aspect of learning. 

A graduate of Morehouse College with a bachelor’s degree in English, Bandy also holds LEED Accredited Professional certification from USGBC. He is a native of Opelika, Alabama.