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Commencement Speakers

Mary and Richard Templeton

Technology and civic leaders Richard and Mary Templeton will share the delivery of the SMU Commencement address at an all-University ceremony in Moody Coliseum at 9 a.m. Saturday, May 14. The ceremony, including the commencement address, will be broadcast live at www.smu.edu/live.

“Richard and Mary Templeton’s lives reflect an exceptional commitment to community service and a determination to squarely face and adapt to unanticipated life changes,” said SMU President R. Gerald Turner. Their message will both inspire and guide our students at this important stage of their lives.”

Richard Templeton, a member of the SMU Board of Trustees, is president and CEO of Texas Instruments, and Mary Templeton is a financial analyst and computer scientist.  Their $2 million gift in 2014 established the Mary and Richard Templeton Centennial Chair of Electrical Engineering, providing for a $1.5 million endowment and $500,000 in operational support.  The couple has three children, Stephanie, John and Jim – who is a 2014 graduate of SMU’s Lyle School of Engineering.

Mary Templeton is a philanthropist and community volunteer who had a 14-year career with General Electric Company (GE) before moving to Dallas.  She has served on the boards of trustees for her alma mater, Union College, the University of Dallas, John Paul II High School, Ursuline Academy of Dallas Foundation, the Southwest Region Boys and Girls Club of America, AT&T Performing Arts Center and the Dallas Arboretum.  Mrs. Templeton is a member of the Advisory Council of The Catholic Foundation.  In 2011 she received the 29th Catholic Foundation Award for her support of Catholic education.

With more than 30 years of experience in the semiconductor industry, Richard Templeton has been chairman of the board at TI since 2008, and president and CEO since 2004.  In addition to his TI duties, Mr. Templeton serves on the board of the Semiconductor Industry Association, the board of directors of Catalyst, and the board of trustees for Southwestern Medical Foundation.  He is also a member of the Business Roundtable. In addition to serving as an SMU trustee, he also serves on the executive boards for the Lyle School of Engineering and the Cox School of Business.

Under Mr. Templeton’s leadership, TI and the TI Foundation have invested generously in programs designed to strengthen global education programs, including K-12 STEM teaching and student achievement.  The TI Foundation maintains a strong partnership with SMU, supporting ambitious programs that break through roadblocks to diversity and support innovation in engineering education.  The TI Foundation endowed the Texas Instruments Distinguished Chair in Engineering Education and the directorship of the Caruth Institute for Engineering Education at SMU’s Lyle School in 2008. Members of TI leadership have served on SMU’s board of trustees and provided guidance to other University committees and groups for decades.