MONTGOMERY—Public Service Commissioner Twinkle Andress Cavanaugh encouraged Troy University graduates Tuesday night to never give up in pursuing their future goals.
Cavanaugh delivered the keynote address during the fall commencement ceremony for the Montgomery Campus. The 7 p.m. ceremony was held inside the Davis Theater for the Performing Arts.
TROY Chancellor Dr. Jack Hawkins, Jr., conferred undergraduate and graduate degrees to more than 200 students.
Cavanaugh shared with graduates three "pearls of wisdom" that she learned from her mentors in life. First is to always think outside the box when faced with challenges.
"Don't follow the crowd and don't do it like everyone else," she said. "I can promise you the easy route will be a crowded arena full of people taking the easy way out."
Next, Cavanaugh told graduates that how they handle adversity in life would define them.
"Each of us in this room tonight has lived long enough to know that life has ups and downs," she said. "I challenge you tonight to learn as much as possible and be an example for others from the mountain tops and from the valleys of our lives."
Finally, Cavanaugh urged graduates to use their education to make a difference in other people's lives.
"Real success is how you touch others along life's path," Cavanaugh said. "You don't have to be a world leader or an international missionary to touch someone else's life. And I encourage you to touch the lives of others and make a difference in whatever endeavor you choose."
Cavanaugh was elected to the Public Service Commission in November 2010. Active in public service for many years, she served as a senior advisor during Gov. Bob Riley's second term and was Deputy Chief of Staff during Riley's first term. She has worked with the Republican National Committee in Washington, D.C., and served as the Executive Director of the Alabama Republican Party.