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Former Men's Tennis Player, SGA President to Speak at Convocation

Quick Facts

 Convocation will begin at 4 p.m. Aug. 20 in Byrnes Auditorium.
 Kerion Ball '97 is the keynote speaker.
 This will be President Anthony DiGiorgio's last Convocation and Blue Line procession.

Kerion Ball
A worldly Winthrop graduate is the keynote speaker for this year’s Convocation ceremony on Aug. 20 at 4 p.m. in Byrnes Auditorium.

Kerion Ball ’97 recently accepted a position in the securities and derivatives division of Ashurst, an international law firmed based in London. With 24 offices in 14 countries, the firm advises corporations, financial institutions and governments with a core emphasis in corporate, finance, energy, resources and infrastructure. Previously, he worked as a senior associate with Freshfields Bruchaus Deringer.

During his time at Winthrop, Ball was president of Winthrop’s Student Government Association, a member of Model United Nations and a member of the tennis team. He was one of eight players involved in a van crash in 1993 outside Hattiesburg, Miss., that killed a teammate and seriously injured another. He still credits Winthrop in rallying to support the team, not only after the accident but for many years afterwards.

Ball, who majored in political science and minored in Spanish, was a member of Phi Kappa Phi and Omicron Delta Kappa and was the 1997 recipient of the Algernon Sydney Sullivan Award for excellence and service.

Ball met his wife, Aurelia Besnainou ’96 ’98, at Winthrop. The couple married and moved to New Zealand, where Ball earned his law degree and worked for the country’s top law firm, Bell Gully.

Convocation, traditionally held the day before classes begin, serves as an official welcome to new freshmen and their induction into the Winthrop community of learners. Offices will close at 3:45 p.m. so that all faculty and staff will be able to attend the ceremony.

During Winthrop’s Convocation ceremony, students will be welcomed to Rock Hill by Dalton Floyd, chair of the Board of Trustees; Doug Echols, mayor of Rock Hill; Kambrell Garvin, chair of the Council of Student Leaders; and Cliff Calloway, faculty representative.

Immediately following Convocation, President and Mrs. Anthony DiGiorgio will lead students out of Byrnes and toward Tillman Hall in the traditional Blue Line procession. It will mark the last Convocation and procession for the president, who will retire at the end of 2012-13 academic year. The community picnic will follow on the lawn in front of Tillman Hall and Margaret Nance Hall at 5 p.m. The rain location for the picnic is the West Center.

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