University of Pittsburgh
April 13, 2003

Former U.S. Secretary of the Treasury Paul O'Neill Will Deliver University of Pittsburgh's 2003 Commencement Address April 27

Contact:  412-624-4147

PITTSBURGH—Former U.S. Secretary of the Treasury Paul O'Neill will deliver the University of Pittsburgh 2003 commencement address.

His address is titled "New Directions: The Opportunity Ahead." Pitt's commencement ceremony will take place at 1 p.m. April 27 in the Petersen Events Center, located on Terrace Street in Oakland, for the very first time.

"We are delighted to welcome Paul O'Neill to campus and to honor him at this year's commencement—our first commencement at the Petersen Events Center," said Pitt Chancellor Mark A. Nordenberg. "Paul's professional and personal accomplishments are testimonies to his perseverance, integrity, and strong spirit of inquiry. Having stood at the helm of two great international companies (Alcoa and International Paper) and served as secretary of the Treasury, he knows the critical importance of courageous leadership—in business, in politics, and in life."

A special advisor since March to The Blackstone Group, a private investment bank with offices in New York and London, O'Neill was a member of the Pitt Board of Trustees from March 1988 to June 1991, serving on the Academic Affairs/Libraries Committee and as chair of the Graduate School of Public and International Affairs' Board of Visitors. In February, O'Neill was appointed a University director of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) Board of Directors and a member of the Executive Committee of the UPMC Board.

O'Neill was secretary of the U.S. Treasury from January 2001 to December 2002. Prior to serving the Bush administration, he was chief executive officer of Alcoa from June 1987 to May 1999 and chair of its board from 1987 until his retirement from that position in January 2001. Before joining Alcoa, O'Neill was president of International Paper Company from 1985 to 1987; he was vice president of that company from 1977 to 1985.

O'Neill earned the Bachelor of Arts degree in economics at Fresno State College and the Master of Public Administration degree at Indiana University. O'Neill and his wife, Nancy, have four children and 12 grandchildren. He and his wife live in Pittsburgh.