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April 20: Commencement Exercises At Hood

Friday, April 20, 2012

FREDERICK, Md.—Hood College held its 115th commencement ceremonies May 19 on the residential quadrangle. Diplomas will be presented to more than 360 undergraduates and 214 graduate students in two graduation exercises.

Bill Strickland, president and CEO of Manchester Bidwell Corporation and its subsidiaries, Manchester Craftsmen’s Guild and Bidwell Training Center, delivered the commencement address to undergraduates during the 10 a.m. ceremony. James R. Racheff, chairman and chief executive officer of Data Management Services and a Hood alumnus, addressed the master’s degree candidates during the 3 p.m. commencement ceremony.

Strickland is a nationally recognized leader whose organization serves as a national model for education, culture and hope for students and adults within an organizational culture that fosters innovation, creativity, responsibility and integrity. He is the recipient of numerous prestigious awards for his contributions to the arts and the community, including the coveted MacArthur “Genius” award.

For more than 20 years, Racheff has worked for DMS, which provides information technology support and infrastructure services, plus biostatistic and other scientific programming services. In March the Tech Council of Maryland named DMS the Frederick County Firm of the Year. He earned a master’s degree in computer and information science from Hood in 1993 and an MBA in 2002.

Racheff is keenly involved in seeking ways to improve not only his company but also his community. He is the founder of Racheff Enterprises, a real estate development and holding company that focuses on redevelopment opportunities in the City of Frederick, and partner at Frog Eye Farm, a local micro-farm dedicated to growing organic blueberries. He also serves on many advisory boards to help promote educational outreach to improve the skills of local students preparing for the science and technology job market.

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