Fall commencement Saturday in Commerce
By Scott Harvey
Commerce – Dallas Mayor Tom Leppert and Texas A&M University-Commerce Adjunct Instructor Dean Aslinia will be the keynote speakers during commencement exercises Saturday in Commerce.
Leppert, who will speak to the two morning assemblies, was elected mayor of Dallas in 2007 and donates all of his salary to scholarships.
Being named "CEO of the Year" in 2008 by D Magazine is among the many accolades he's received for leadership.
Mayor Leppert holds an M.B.A. with Distinction from Harvard Business School and graduated cum laude from Claremont McKenna College.
Speaking to the afternoon session is Dean Aslinia, an adjunct instructor in the Departments of Psychology and Special Education and Counseling.
Aslinia was the recipient of the A&M -Commerce John P. McQuary Doctoral Endowment Scholarship for 2010, and the Truax Foundation Outstanding Doctoral Student Scholarship in 2009.
His doctoral degree in counseling, to be received Saturday, adds to his previous B.A., M.A. and M.S. degrees.
Complete bios of Leppert and Aslinia, can be found below. Graduation information is available at: http://web.tamu-commerce.edu/admissions/registrar/graduation/default.aspx
Tom Leppert was elected mayor of Dallas in June 2007. Since that time, he has instilled a professional, supportive, and business-focused approach and a strong sense of cooperation, optimism, and "can do" spirit within the city and community. As Mayor, he has aggressively pursued policies that have dramatically improved the quality of life in Dallas. In the areas of public safety, where the crime has fallen dramatically, economic development, with companies moving to Dallas and the downtown undergoing a renaissance, and the environment, Dallas has emerged as a focal point in the nation. Additionally, the Mayor has instituted a strong trade agenda leading delegations to China, Korea, Taiwan, Mexico, and Canada.
Mayor Leppert has also pursued a strong education agenda. The Mayor has introduced the Mayor's Intern Fellows program, an early reading, pre-literacy program, which has reached over 50,000 pre-school children, Operation Front Door, and the Mayor's Chesapeake Energy Scholarships. Mayor Leppert donates all of his salary as Mayor to scholarships.
Prior to his election, Mayor Leppert led major national and international corporations in the areas of construction, financial services, and real estate. A lifelong community volunteer, he has served numerous community groups and charitable organizations on both the local and national levels. He has been recognized nationally for his leadership, including "CEO of the Year" for 2008 by D Magazine, the "Torch of Conscience Award" from American Jewish Congress, and "The Global Cross Millennium Award for Corporate Environmental Leadership" from Global Green. He also has received the Russell H. Perry Free Enterprise Award from Dallas Baptist University.
Mayor Leppert holds an M.B.A. with Distinction from Harvard Business School and graduated cum laude from Claremont McKenna College. He and his wife, Laura, live in Dallas. Their son, Christian, and twins, Catherine and Ryan, are all in college. They are members of First Baptist Church and Park Cities Baptist Churches.
S. Dean Aslinia has taught as an adjunct instructor in the Departments of Psychology and Special Education and Counseling and has served as a Faculty Instructional Design Specialist at Texas A&M University-Commerce since 2008.
Aslinia is a National Certified Counselor, Licensed Professional Counselor, Certified Grief Counselor, and is in the process of obtaining additional licensure and certification as a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and Registered Play Therapist. Prior to coming to A&M-Commerce, he served as an enrollment counselor/student advisor at the University of Phoenix in Dallas, and an ambassador and research assistant at the University of Houston. He has authored and/or co-authored a monograph and several articles in refereed publications and professional journals, and has presented papers at the international, national, state, and local level.
Aslinia was the recipient of the Texas A&M University-Commerce John P. McQuary Doctoral Endowment Scholarship for 2010, and the Truax Foundation Outstanding Doctoral Student Scholarship in 2009. He also has been recognized at the state and national level by professional organizations such as the Texas Counseling Association as well as the Association for Assessment in Counseling and Education. He received the Texas Counseling Association Joseph and Lorraine Dameron Educational Endowment Scholarship, and the American Counseling Association provided him a full scholarship to the Annual Conference in Charlotte, North Carolina in 2009. He received the Houtan Foundation National Scholarship in 2008, and was named the Outstanding Masters Student by the Association of Professors and Scholars of Persian Heritage in 2006.
He has a B.S. in Psychology from the University of Houston, an M.A in Psychology from the University Houston-Clear Lake, and an M.S. in Counseling from Texas A&M University-Commerce. He will receive his doctoral degree in Counseling Saturday.