General Raymond T. Odierno speaks at Commencement

June 6, 2013  |  PRESS RELEASES

On May 18, 2013, General Raymond T. Odierno, Chief of Staff of the U.S. Army, was honored during the Institute's commencement ceremony and delivered the keynote address to the graduates and their families.

The general was introduced by IWP president Dr. John Lenczowski, who characterized General Odierno as the personification of the very kind of leadership in statecraft that serves as a model for our graduates, our students, our larger community, and our country.

During the ceremony, the Institute presented General Odierno with a Doctorate of Laws Honoris Causa.

In his remarks, General Odierno noted that the Institute shares many of the core values with which he was raised, including a love of learning and of country, and a dedication to service. He said that his inspiration for his 37 years of service in the military comes from the incredible dedication he sees in those who serve around him.

An IWP education marks a transition in the life of its graduates from being tactical to strategic leaders, he observed. He spoke to the Class of 2013 about several requirements of strategic leadership, and exhorted them to demonstrate competence and character in all of their undertakings.

General Odierno noted that leadership is especially essential in today's complex environment, in which we need to be flexible and adaptable in order to identify and mitigate security risks. For this reason, the Army has a strong focus on leadership development, and is indebted to the Institute for welcoming Army fellows, establishing a Basic Strategic Arts certificate, and training mid-career Army officers.

He commended the Class of 2013 for their commitment to learning strategy, and thanked family members who had lent moral support.