The new caps and gowns have been designed, the date has been picked, the venue has been secured, and the speaker has been selected for the first-ever graduation ceremony for Limestone University this December.
When its most recent commencement was held back in May of this year, Limestone was still known as a college. That changed on July 1 when the institution officially moved to university status. That sets the stage for the upcoming fall semester graduation to be the very first for Limestone University.
Due to the current COVID-19 pandemic and physical distancing protocols, Limestone will hold its second straight graduation ceremony outside at Gaffney High School’s football stadium, known as The Reservation, on Saturday, Dec. 5, at 2 p.m.
The commencement on May 29 was momentous in that it marked the final graduation for Limestone College. History will be made again in December when Limestone President Dr. Darrell Parker confers the first of what is expected to be nearly 300 university degrees.
The Commencement speaker will be Randall L. Richardson, an Executive Healthcare Consultant, who is a current Board of Trustees member for Limestone University. He is also on the Board of Directors for the Crossnore School and Children’s Homes, and he serves on Carolina Day School’s Buildings and Grounds Sub-Committee.
Richardson’s progressive career encompasses Healthcare Information Technology, Strategic Planning, and Clinical Operations (Cardiology and Psychiatry), beginning at Mission Health System and most recently Honeywell International as the Director of the North American Healthcare Vertical Market. Prior to being recruited to Honeywell, Richardson was the Vice President of Global Healthcare Solutions for Lanco Global Systems Inc., where he worked in the Middle East, North Africa, and Europe focusing on healthcare clients’ IT strategic initiatives.
A native of Asheville, Richardson is a graduate from Montreat College, where he earned a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration. He is also a graduate from Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business, where he earned a Master’s degree in Business Administration. Richardson is Fellow of The American College of Healthcare Executives. He and his wife, Fanaye, have been married for 34 years. They have two adult daughters including Lauren and son-in-law David Evans of Atlanta and Candace Richardson of New York. Randall and his wife are excited to welcome their first grandchild, Zoey.
Limestone typically holds two back-to-back ceremonies inside Fullerton Auditorium for its two graduations each year, but due to the larger seating capacity available, there will again be one combined ceremony at the high school stadium.
Prior to moving its ceremonies inside Fullerton Auditorium in the 1990s, Limestone traditionally held its commencement exercises outside on the front campus.
Social distancing guidelines will be followed at the upcoming ceremony. Graduates will be seated on the field and spectators will use both the home and away sides of the stadium. More event details will be announced closer to the date of the commencement.
The ceremony will also be live-streamed so family and friends unable to be in attendance can view online at www.limestone.edu.
Graduates and their families are being encouraged to travel to Limestone prior to the ceremony to walk the front campus and take photos.