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Walden News // Jul 09, 2019

ABC News Anchor T.J. Holmes to Speak at Walden University’s Summer Commencement

Minneapolis—July 9, 2019—T.J. Holmes, an award-winning journalist and ABC news anchor and correspondent, will be the keynote speaker at Walden University’s 62nd Commencement Ceremony on Saturday, August 3, 2019 in National Harbor, Maryland. Walden’s nursing ceremony will feature resilience expert and author Diane Sieg, RN, CYT. Dr. Galen Duncan, vice president of the Kings Academy and Professional Development for the Sacramento Kings, will speak at the doctoral ceremony.

“For nearly 50 years, Walden University has been passionate about effecting positive social change, and this year’s commencement speakers show how this can done through a variety of unique fields,” says Dr. Ward Ulmer, president of Walden. “From journalism to nursing to athletics, the journeys of T.J. Holmes, Diane Sieg and Dr. Galen Duncan will inspire our incredible graduates at our 62nd Commencement Ceremony.”

T.J. Holmes
T.J. Holmes

T.J. Holmes
Across CNN, MSNBC and Good Morning America, T.J. Holmes has covered significant news and events around the world. In his 17-year journalism career, he’s conducted in-depth reporting on presidential elections, the poaching crisis in South Africa and the Summer Olympics in Athens, Greece and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

He’s been on the front lines of some of the nation’s hardest stories, including the devastating Joplin, Missouri tornadoes, catastrophic Deepwater Horizon oil spill in New Orleans, Louisiana and tragic shootings on the Virginia Tech campus in Blacksburg, Virginia. Abroad, he's covered terrorist attacks in Mumbai, India and Glasgow International Airport in Scotland, as well as Saddam Hussein’s execution in 2006.

Holmes is also a member of the National Association of Black Journalists and 100 Black Men of America, Inc., which is dedicated towards improving the quality of life within black communities and enhancing educational and economic opportunities for all African Americans.

“I’ve been blessed with the opportunity to create positive social change through journalism, which has given me an important sense of purpose to give back to the causes I am passionate about,” says Holmes. “I’m proud to be addressing the newest set of Walden graduates as they set off into this world using their unique education and skills to strengthen their own personal stories and the communities around them.”

Diane Sieg, RN, CYT
Diane Sieg, RN, CYT

Diane Sieg, RN, CYT
With more than 20 years of nursing experience in hospital emergency rooms across the country, Diane Sieg is an author, coach and consultant dedicated to helping individuals and organizations in healthcare. She teaches resilience skills and strategies to improve the health and happiness of healthcare staff, the quality of the patient experience and the bottom line of organizations.

Sieg has authored two books, “Stop Living Life Like an Emergency! Rescue Strategies for the Overworked and Overwhelmed” and “30 Days to Grace: The Practice Guide to Achieve Your Ultimate Goals.” Additionally, she created The Resilience Academy and leads retreats around the world.

“Today more than ever, the nursing profession requires resilience,” says Sieg. “Walden nursing graduates are being equipped with the latest skills that not only help them improve patient care but also navigate the fast-paced and challenging healthcare environment. I consider it an honor and privilege to be a nurse, work with nurses and address Walden University’s nursing graduates. They are our future, and we need them to lead the positive change necessary in healthcare today.”

Dr. Galen Duncan
Dr. Galen Duncan

Dr. Galen Duncan
Dr. Galen Duncan, a 2007 Walden PhD in Health Psychology graduate and retired United States Army Reserves officer, has spent nearly 20 years working with NBA and NFL players on personal challenges and off-field career opportunities. He currently serves as the vice president for the Kings Academy, where he is responsible for implementing a developmental, player-centric curriculum to help athletes mature into well-rounded professionals and become impactful contributors in the community.

Previously, Duncan spent 10 years with the NFL’s Detroit Lions, where he advised players regarding housing options, financial education tools, counseling connections and off-field opportunities. Additionally, Duncan assisted with character evaluations for all draft eligible players, oversaw rookie transition and social media etiquette training programs and served as the team’s liaison between the League Office and NFL Players Association. He also spent six seasons as a treating clinician for the NFL’s Program for Abuse of Substances, providing one-on-one and group therapy for football players involved in the treatment program.

“In my work, I’m always encouraged by the motivation and drive I see in athletes to succeed in their career and communities,” says Dr. Duncan. “As a Walden graduate, this same sense of purpose to drive positive social change is embedded in our education, and I’m excited to see how the next set of graduates make a difference on and off their court of choice.”

The Walden University community honors its graduating students twice a year at summer and winter commencement ceremonies. On August 3, 2019, Walden’s graduation will begin with the Doctoral Hooding Ceremony at 8:30 a.m. ET, followed by the School of Nursing ceremony at 1 p.m. ET and the master's, bachelor's and specialist ceremony at 4:30 p.m. ET. The ceremony and speakers can be viewed live via webcast at


About Walden University
For nearly 50 years, Walden University has supported working professionals in achieving their academic goals and making a greater impact in their professions and communities. Students from across the U.S. and more than 150 countries are pursuing a certificate, bachelor’s, master’s or doctoral degree online at Walden. The university offers more than 80 degree programs with over 350 specializations and concentrations. Walden University is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission, It is also one of more than 35 institutions in 10 countries that make up the Laureate International Universities network. For more information, please visit

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