'America's Doctor' to Address UA Graduates
U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy will serve as speaker at the UA's Commencement ceremonies on May 13 in Arizona Stadium.

University Relations - Communications
March 28, 2016


Surgeon General Vivek Murthy
Surgeon General Vivek Murthy

The keynote address for the 152nd Commencement of the University of Arizona will be delivered by U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy.

The nation's leading spokesman for public health, Murthy is a champion of improving care and building coalitions, having devoted his career to the enhancement of global public health through education, service, clinical care and entrepreneurship. 

Murthy, 38, was nominated by President Barack Obama in November 2013 and then confirmed as the 19th U.S. surgeon general in December 2014, becoming the first Indian American and the youngest person to hold the position.

The son of immigrants from India, Murthy discovered a love for the art of healing early in his childhood while spending time in his father’s medical clinic in Miami, Florida. He graduated from Harvard University in 1997 with a degree in biochemical sciences. In 2003, he earned his medical degree from the Yale School of Medicine, and also a Master of Business Administration, with a focus in health care management, from the Yale School of Management.

Murthy believes that the nation's greatest asset always has been its people. As surgeon general, he has fought to educate and inspire his fellow Americans around a key set of priorities: mental health and emotional well-being, healthful eating, active and tobacco-free living, chronic disease prevention, and the country's growing opioid epidemic.

Murthy has helped establish several organizations dedicated to expanding public access — nationally and internationally — to quality health care and scientific information related to personal and public health and safety. He is co-founder of VISIONS Worldwide Inc., an HIV/AIDS education program that operates in the U.S. and India. He also helped establish the Swasthya project ("health and well-being" in Sanskrit), a community health partnership that trains women as health providers and educators, working through centers and villages in rural India.

Murthy also is co-founder of Doctors for America, a Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit organization comprising 16,000 physicians and medical students across the U.S. The organization advocates for access to affordable, quality health care.

Also, Murthy co-founded and chaired TrialNetworks, a software technology company that improves research collaboration and enhances the efficiency of clinical trials around the world. In seven years, Murthy and his team took the company from conception to an international enterprise that powers dozens of clinical trials for more than 50,000 patients in more than 75 countries.

As "America’s Doctor," Murthy is responsible for communicating the most advanced and relevant scientific information to the public. He oversees the operations of the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps, which includes approximately 6,700 uniformed health officers serving in nearly 800 locations globally. The officers work to promote, protect and advance the health and safety of the nation and world.

The UA Commencement ceremony will be held at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, May 13, in Arizona Stadium. 

Extra info

More information for UA graduates and families is available online at http://commencement.arizona.edu/.


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