College of Lake County still wants Biden's wife as speaker

Updated 7/29/2013 1:57 PM
  • Jill Biden

    Jill Biden

Vice President Joe Biden's wife is at the top of College of Lake County's commencement speaker list for 2014.

Jill Biden, a community college teacher for more than 30 years, is known to give commencement addresses at two-year schools. She was CLC's top pick to speak at the flagship Grayslake campus for the 2012-13 ceremony in May, but was unavailable.

"We're going to continue to see if we can get her as a commencement speaker," CLC President Jerry Weber told board members at a recent meeting.

Officials said CLC has a list of about 15 potential speakers, including Biden, who were considered for the graduation last May. CLC board members are expected to peruse that list and will be surveyed for alternative graduation speakers if CLC can't land Biden.

After striking out with Biden and U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan for this year, CLC selected successful business graduate and author Dean DeBiase to give the address. DeBiase is co-founder and CEO of Reboot Partners in Lake Forest, a growth management and board advisement business.

CLC held two graduation ceremonies at the Grayslake campus' physical education center. Weber said Grayslake will be the venue again for 2014.

Last month, CLC board members Lynda Paul and Philip Carrigan pushed for a return to Waukegan's Genesee Theatre. Paul said the Genesee Theatre could serve as a bridge for CLC's three campuses and such a move would be a community gesture toward Waukegan.

Trustee Jeanne Goshgarian was among the elected officials to speak in favor of the CLC's Grayslake campus, saying it's a more student-focused setting.

Twitter: @DHBobSusnjara

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