2018 Commencement Speakers

Each year, we are honored to present Commencement speakers who embody the mission and values of Rollins and impart inspiring and pragmatic advice for graduates.

College of Liberal Arts

Rodney Adkins

Rodney Adkins

President of 3RAM Group LLC

Rodney C. Adkins ’81 is the president of 3RAM Group LLC, a business consulting firm specializing in investment and real estate. Previously, he was senior vice president of IBM, where he was the company’s first African American senior vice president and corporate officer. He retired from IBM after more than 33 years of service, including leadership of strategic partnerships and corporate strategy. Mr. Adkins’ work has spanned the world of technology and computing. He was a leading innovator in solutions ranging from mobile devices to the world's largest supercomputers. His major contributions include helping to develop the Personal Computer industry, launching the IBM ThinkPad mobile PC, leading IBM's POWER business to become the dominant player in the UNIX market, and helping to pioneer what became IBM's portfolio of Smarter Planet solutions. He currently serves on the corporate boards of Avnet, PayPal, PPL Corporation, United Parcel Service, Inc., and W. W. Grainger, Inc.

Mr. Adkins was inducted into the National Academy of Engineering in 2005. His life story is archived in The History Makers, and he is a lifetime member of the National Society of Black Engineers, which has recognized him with the Golden Torch Award for Lifetime Achievement in Industry. In 2002, Fortune magazine named Mr. Adkins one of the 50 Most Powerful Black Executives in America, and Black Enterprise magazine chose him as its 2011 Corporate Executive of the Year and 2016 Trailblazer of the Year. He was recognized with Rollins’ Alumni Achievement Award in 2013.

In addition to a B.A. with an emphasis in physics from Rollins, Mr. Adkins holds B.S. and M.S. degrees in electrical engineering from Georgia Institute of Technology and has received two honorary doctorates. He is a member of the Board of Trustees of Rollins College and of the Georgia Tech Foundation, and also serves on the University of Maryland Baltimore County (UMBC) Board of Visitors and the University of Miami College of Engineering Dean’s Advisory Board. Mr. Adkins is a member of the Executive Leadership Council (ELC) as well as the boards of the Kappa Alpha Psi Foundation, the Smithsonian Institution, and Harlem School of the Arts. He is a founding donor of the new Smithsonian Museum of African American History and Culture. 

Hamilton Holt School

Stephanie Murphy

Stephanie Murphy

U.S. Congresswoman

U.S. Congresswoman Stephanie Murphy proudly represents Florida’s Seventh Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives. The district includes all of Seminole County and much of northern Orange County, including downtown Orlando, Maitland, Winter Park, and the University of Central Florida. She currently serves on the powerful House Armed Services Committee and the House Small Business Committee, where she serves as Ranking Member on the Subcommittee on Contracting and Workforce. 

Previously, Congresswoman Murphy was a businesswoman and college instructor after serving as a national security specialist in the Office of the U.S. Secretary of Defense where she received numerous awards for her distinguished service, including the Secretary of Defense Medal for Exceptional Civilian Service. She worked on a wide range of security issues from counterterrorism to foreign military relations to strategic planning for the department. Prior to her public service, Stephanie was a strategy consultant at Deloitte Consulting. 

Congresswoman Murphy holds a M.S. in Foreign Service from Georgetown University and a B.A. in Economics from the College of William and Mary. She lives in Winter Park, Florida, with her husband and two young children.

Crummer Graduate School of Business

Eric Spiegel

Eric Spiegel

Special Advisor to General Atlantic, LLC

Eric Spiegel has over 37 years of global leadership and consulting experience leading multi-cultural teams in complex organizations in the energy, industrials and healthcare sectors.

Mr. Spiegel is the former President and CEO of Siemens USA, the largest subsidiary of Siemens AG, the German multinational engineering, and electronics conglomerate. In that role, Mr. Spiegel was responsible for growing the U.S. business in the company’s largest market, which included over $22 billion in sales including exports, over 70 manufacturing sites, and appropriately 55,000 employees in all 50 states. Mr. Spiegel joined Siemens in 2010 after 25 years of global consulting experience with Booz Allen Hamilton. There he served in key global leadership roles, including four years as the firm’s Tokyo-based managing director for International businesses, which included Asia, Australia, Latin America and the Middle East. He also led the Global Energy practice for many years and was a member of the firm’s Board of Directors.

Currently, he serves as a Special Advisor to General Atlantic LLC, a leading global growth equity firm providing capital and strategic support for growth companies.

In addition, Mr. Spiegel is the Chairman of the Board of Directors at CLEAResult, Inc., a member of the Board of Directors at Liberty Mutual Holding Company, Inc., and a member of the Board of Directors at Dover Corporation. He is also Chairman of Ford's Theatre Society Board in Washington, D.C. and a member of the Board of Trustees at Rollins College. He also served on President Obama’s Advanced Manufacturing Council and as a member of Secretary Pritzker’s Advisory Board for the Commerce Department.

Mr. Spiegel holds an MBA from the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College, where he was an Edward Tuck Scholar, and received his A.B. with Honors in Economics from Harvard University. He has also authored the book, Energy Shift: Game-Changing Options for Fueling the Future.