Stan Hilkey will address Adams State fall graduates


Stan Hilkey

Stan Hilkey, executive director of the Colorado Department of Public Safety, will give the commencement address at Adams State University in Alamosa on December 17, 2016. The ceremony begins at 10 a.m. in Plachy Hall. Adams State will award 156 degrees, including 131 bachelor's degrees, and 25 associate degrees.

In recognition for his outstanding work in law enforcement, Adams State will award Hilkey an Honorary Doctorate in State and Local Government during the ceremony.

Hilkey's speech, "The Power of Relationships, Character and Education," will include stories from his career in law enforcement that demonstrate the power of relationships and critical lessons that he learned as a cop but which can apply to anyone in their career and life choices.

Colorado native Hilkey began his service as Executive Director of the Colorado Department of Public Safety in June 2014 after more than 11 years serving as Sheriff of Mesa County.

In his role as Executive Director of CDPS, he supervises the work of more than 1,600 members of the department, which includes the Colorado State Patrol, Colorado Bureau of Investigation, Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management, Division of Criminal Justice, Division of Fire Prevention and Control and the Colorado School Safety Resources Center. CDPS is one of the largest departments in Colorado state government.

Hilkey has spent his whole career in public safety, including 28 years in the Mesa County Sheriff's Office. The Mesa County Sheriff is responsible for law enforcement services in a county of 140,000 residents and 3,300 square miles. Just before assuming his new role in state government, he supervised response to a deadly, massive landslide in Collbran, Colorado.

The Adams State Extended Studies program has 40 undergraduate students graduating this fall, including 19 incarcerated, 17 general, 2 on-campus, and 2 international.

Arnold Salazar, chair of the Adams State Board of Trustees, will convey the greetings from the board, while Eric Learn will deliver the 2016 class message. The Adams State a cappela group 68 West will lead the singing of the Alma Mater.

Family and friends unable to physically attend the commencement ceremony can stream the program live on their computer at Adams Live.