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Boston Business Leader, Political Figure and Urban Advocate Steve Grossman Chosen as Commencement Speaker

March 09, 2016

Lasell College President Michael B. Alexander today announced that Steve Grossman, a prominent business and political voice in Massachusetts who currently runs the Boston-based non-profit Initiative for a Competitive Inner City (ICIC), will deliver the Commencement address on Sunday, May 15, 2016.

Grossman, the former Treasurer for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and gubernatorial candidate, currently serves as the Chief Executive Officer for ICIC, leading a dynamic and growing team of professionals dedicated to achieving economic prosperity in America's inner cities.

"The entire Lasell community welcomes Steve Grossman as our keynote Commencement speaker," said Alexander. "His experience as a respected business and political leader, combined with his new focus on the economic health and well-being of our inner cities, will surely inspire our students and their families."

Since he was named CEO of ICIC in early 2015, Grossman has concentrated on setting the organization's strategic direction, leading the organization through a period of rapid growth and expanding ICIC's national visibility and brand. He directs ICIC's efforts to secure new partners and drive private sector engagement and investment.

Before joining ICIC, which was founded by Harvard Business School Professor Michael Porter in 1994, Grossman served as Treasurer of Massachusetts from 2010 to 2015. One of his principal achievements in that office was the creation of the Small Business Banking Partnership, a pioneering initiative that moved almost $400 million of state deposits into community banks. These deposits were used to leverage more than 10,000 loans with a value of over $1.6 billion, with a principal focus on businesses owned by women, minorities, immigrants and veterans.

Prior to taking political office, Grossman served for 35 years as President of Grossman Marketing Group, a Somerville, MA-based, fourth-generation marketing communications firm founded by his grandfather. Widely recognized as an active leader of many civic, philanthropic and political organizations, Grossman has served as chair of Brandeis University trustees, chairman of the Democratic National Committee, president of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), founding board member of Mass Inc. and life trustee of the Museum of Fine Arts. He currently chairs the advisory board of Cambridge College.

Grossman graduated from Princeton University and Harvard Business School, where he was a Baker Scholar. He is married to Dr. Barbara Wallace Grossman, a theater historian and director, who is a professor in the Department of Drama & Dance at Tufts University and serves as vice-chair of the Massachusetts Cultural Council. The couple, who live in Newton, have three sons, David, Ben and Josh, and five grandchildren.

Grossman will receive an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters at Commencement, which will be held May 15 at 11 a.m. on Taylor Field at Lasell's Newton, MA campus.