AUBURN – Auburn University will present an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree to Mobile attorney and AU Trustee John C.H. “Jack” Miller Jr. at fall commencement on Monday, Dec. 17.
Approximately 1, 396 new graduates will also receive AU degrees at the 2 p.m. commencement in Beard-Eaves-Memorial Coliseum. These include 1, 061 bachelor’s degrees, 266 master’s degrees, 66 doctorates and three education specialist degrees.
Miller was a founder and is chairman of the Mobile-based law firm of Miller, Hamilton, Snider and Odom, which has offices in Birmingham, Montgomery, Atlanta, Washington and Miami.
In the early 1970s, Miller served on the staffs of Alabama Congressman Walter Flowers and U.S. Sen. John Sparkman. In 1973, he was appointed assistant to the director of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., and in 1977, he was named deputy to the chairman of the FDIC.
Miller served as chairman of the Alabama Democratic Party from 1998-2001, and as chairman of the Governor’s Special Commission to reengineer the Alabama State Docks, he led efforts that resulted in $100 million in initial renovations to the docks. In Mobile, he served as chairman of the Downtown Redevelopment Commission from 1990-2006, during which time he guided investments of more than $400 million into the downtown area.
A member of the AU Board of Trustees since 2000, he is chair of the Academic Affairs Committee, where he has been influential in strengthening admissions and academic standards and led efforts to establish the “learning communities” concept for new student housing at AU.
A graduate of Duke University, Miller attended law school at the University of Alabama, where he served on the “Law Review.” In the academic arena, Miller has taught in the School of Banking of the South at Louisiana State University and taught law and English at the University of Alabama.
Miller and his wife Susan have three children and one grandson.
At the Dec. 17 ceremony, the College of Business will award the most bachelor’s degrees with 277, followed by the College of Liberal Arts with 263 and the College of Engineering with 129. The College of Education will award 87 degrees; the College of Human Sciences 80; the College of Sciences and Mathematics 78; the College of Architecture, Design and Construction 60; the College of Agriculture 57; the School of Forestry and Wildlife Sciences 16; and the School of Nursing 14.
A live video stream of the ceremonies will be available on the Web at www.auburn.edu/graduationlive .
AU has awarded more than 210,000 degrees at its main campus since its founding as the East Alabama Male College in 1856. The honorary degree will be the 152nd awarded by AU in the university’s 151-year history.
(Contributed by Roy Summerford.)