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Homecoming Awards Breakfast

Saturday, Nov. 14, 8:30 a.m.

Good morning and welcome! It’s a joy to be here.

I’m not sure who picked this year’s Homecoming theme, “Garnet and Golden Age,” but I hope they weren’t referring to me! Although I have to admit, I am excited to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Class of ’65 with my classmates this weekend.

Tomorrow we will be inducted into the Emeritus Alumni Society, and I could not be more proud to say that I have been a part of the FSU family for more than five decades!

Florida State University is the kind of place that loves its traditions, but Homecoming is my favorite.

It is a time when we welcome members of the Florida State family back home to the warmth of this campus where they spent such a special time in their lives.

It’s a time when we can gather to relive our own memories, reconnect with old friends, and celebrate the success of our students and alumni who have brought such honor to the university.

When you look around this room, you cannot help but be impressed by the talent, dedication and passion for this university represented here today.

I am so pleased to honor some of our most distinguished alumni with the:

  • Bernard Sliger Award
  • Grad Made Good Awards
  • and the Friends of the FSU Libraries Alumni Award for Distinguished Writing

Our award winners all have made a difference in the world through outstanding success in their fields. They have had their accomplishments recognized at the national or international level, and it’s an honor to recognize them here today.

And, although it seems like there are no surprises in life anymore, the Ross Oglesby Award remains a closely guarded secret. Seriously, the organizers of this award presentation should be working for the CIA. I can’t wait to find out who among our many deserving faculty and staff members will be honored with this award for exemplary service to students and this university.

I’m also pleased to recognize our parade grand marshals Leonard Hamilton and Sue Semrau. Although this weekend is all about football, let me tell you I am really excited about watching some outstanding men’s and women’s basketball this season.

It truly is wonderful to have the best of the FSU family together this morning. All of our honorees have secured their place in Florida State history by pushing boundaries and redefining standards within their respective fields.

I mentioned earlier that Homecoming is my favorite of all the FSU traditions, and it also happens that it is one of the oldest. FSU held its first Homecoming in 1948.

It was small compared to the weeklong celebration we have today. But, a signature event was an elegant Saturday morning breakfast. I’m so glad that we have continued to gather every Homecoming for a breakfast to pay tribute to those who have made Florida State the special place it is today.

Of course, we are all excited to cheer on our Seminoles as we prepare for victory over N.C. State this afternoon.

But this is where the true spirit of Homecoming lives. It’s a time when we express our appreciation for the university that we love and show our gratitude to the people who make us so proud of it.

Thank you, and go Noles!