Richard Simmons, a legendary former steel executive and chairman emeritus of Allegheny Technologies Inc., will deliver keynote remarks at the 2012 Tepper School Masters Programs and Ph.D. Diploma Ceremony. The event will be held on Saturday, May 19, at Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Museum in Pittsburgh’s Oakland neighborhood. The audience will include faculty, staff and the families of more than 300 graduating students.
Known for his vision, philanthropy and civic leadership, Simmons is a former chief executive officer of Allegheny Ludlum Steel Corporation and a distinguished adjunct professor of business management at the Tepper School. In recognition of his contributions to business and the Pittsburgh region, Simmons will receive an honorary degree, Doctor of Science and Technology, during Carnegie Mellon University’s 115th Commencement Ceremony, which will be held at 11 a.m. in Gesling Stadium.
Simmons’ career was marked by decades of success in the turbulent steel industry. The Bridgeport, Conn. native joined Allegheny Ludlum in 1953, then left to assume management positions at Republic Steel Corp. and Latrobe Steel Co. He returned to Allegheny Ludlum in 1968 and moved steadily up the ranks to become company president. In 1980, along with other managers and investors, Simmons led the purchase of Allegheny Ludlum. The company flourished, becoming publicly traded on the New York Stock Exchange and growing into one of the most successful specialty steel makers.
In 1996, Allegheny Ludlum and Teledyne Inc. combined to become Allegheny Technologies Inc. Simmons served as the new company’s chairman of the board and president and chief executive officer. He is also a former director of Joy Manufacturing, US Airways Inc., PNC Bank Corp. and Consolidated Natural Gas Co.
In addition to his success as a leader, Simmons has distinguished himself as an engineer. He was elected to the National Academy of Engineering in 1998. He received the Benjamin F. Fairless Award of the American Institute of Mining, Metallurgical and Petroleum Engineers in 1989. The Engineering Society of Western Pennsylvania has recognized Simmons with the William Metcalf Award for outstanding engineering achievement.
Simmons’ imprint on Pittsburgh goes beyond the steel industry. He is a past chairman and executive community member of the Allegheny Conference on Community Development; director and past chairman of the United Way; a trustee of The Carnegie and chairman and life director of the Pittsburgh Symphony. He also has been a strong backer of venture capital start-ups in western Pennsylvania.
No tickets are needed to attend the diploma ceremonies.
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