As we plan ahead for spring ceremonies, HWA has plenty of speakers for your commencement week festivities and alumni events. Here are just a few examples of speakers who can mark this special occasion in a virtual or hybrid format.


Ronan Farrow: Pulitzer Prize and Peabody Award-Winning Investigative Reporter, New York Times Bestselling Author, Contributing Writer, The New Yorker, Documentary Filmmaker, HBO, Rhodes Scholar and Former U.S. State Department official


Matthew McConaughey: Academy Award-Winning Actor, Co-Founder of the just keep livin Foundation, and New York Times #1 Bestselling Author of Greenlights


Daveed Diggs: Award-Winning and Trailblazing Actor, Writer, Rapper, and Producer, Known for his roles as Thomas Jefferson and Marquis de Lafayette in the Broadway hit Hamilton


Gloria Steinem: Iconic Visionary of the Women's Movement, Co-Founder of the National Women’s Political Caucus, and Co-Founder of Ms. Magazine


Wynton Marsalis: International Jazz Icon, Renowned Musician, Composer, Bandleader, Educator and a Leading Advocate of American culture, Managing and Artistic Director of Jazz at Lincoln Center, and Director of Jazz Studies at The Juilliard School


Katie Sowers: First Openly LGBTQ+ Coach in the NFL and Former Offensive Assistant Coach, San Francisco 49ers


John Legend: Ten-time Grammy® Award Winner, EGOT Winner: Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony, and Philanthropist


Alexis Ohanian: Co-Founder of Reddit, the 6th largest website in the world, Early Stage Venture Capital Investor, and Wall Street Journal Bestselling Author of Without Their Permission


Whoopi Goldberg: Award-Winning Actress and Comedian, Moderator on The View, New York Times Bestselling Author


Michael 'Killer Mike' Render: Rapper & Songwriter, Activist, and Entrepreneur


Tyler Perry: World-Renowned Actor, Producer, Writer, and Entrepreneur, Founder of Tyler Perry Studios, and New York Times Bestselling Author


Mahershala Ali: Star of Critically-Acclaimed Moonlight and True Detective


More Great Speakers for Commencements...

  • Glennon Doyle - Author, Activist, and Founder of Together Rising
  • Serena Williams - Iconic Tennis Champion, Entrepreneur, and Philanthropist, 23-Time Grand Slam Winner, and Founder of the Serena Williams Fund
  • Mohamed El-Erian - Chief Economic Advisor at Allianz, Chair of President Obama’s Global Development Council (2012-2017), CEO and Co-Chief Investment Officer of PIMCO (2007-2014), and President of Queens College, Cambridge
  • Charlize Theron - Academy Award-Winning Actress, United Nations Messenger of Peace, Founder of the Charlize Theron Africa Outreach Project, and Founder of Denver & Delilah, a film production company
  • Kevin Hart - Superstar Comedian and Actor, New York Times Bestselling Author
  • Alex Rodriguez - Chairman and CEO, A-Rod Corp, Iconic Athlete, 3x MVP, and World Series Champion, and Emmy Award-Winning Sports Commentator
  • Shaquille O'Neal - Member NBA Hall of Fame & 15-Time NBA All Star Player, Media Personality, Entrepreneur and Philanthropist
  • Jon Krasinski - Famed Actor, Writer and Director, Co-Founder, Sunday Night Productions, Creator and Host, Some Good News
  • Tan France - Star of Emmy-winning Netflix hit Queer Eye, Fashion Designer & Entrepreneur, Bestselling Author of Naturally Tan
  • J.R. Martinez - Wounded U.S. Army Veteran and Motivational Speaker, Actor and Champion, Dancing with the Stars, New York Times Bestselling Author of Full of Heart, and Host of the Podcast Rebirth with J.R. Martinez
  • Matt Iseman - Licensed physician, Emmy Award winning Host and professional comedian who shares his “prescription for laughs”, Cancer survivor who lives with Rheumatoid Arthritis, Host of NBC’s American Ninja Warrior & winner of the new Celebrity Apprentice