Commencement Speaker

Mr. Richard W. Graber

Concordia’s 2018 commencement speaker, Mr. Richard W. Graber, has served as president and CEO of The Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation in Milwaukee since July 2016. From 2006-2009, Mr. Graber served as the United States Ambassador to the Czech Republic and worked to actively engage the Czech government and the private sector on a number of key issues, including President Bush’s proposed missile defense system, corruption, and judicial reform. Mr. Graber managed a 280-person embassy in the Czech Republic and was responsible for effectively maintaining and strengthening America’s historic relations with the country.

Mr. Graber has also held the position of senior vice president for Global Government Relations for Honeywell International from 2012-16, serving in a similar capacity for Honeywell for two years in the Middle East, Europe, and Africa. Before being appointed by President Bush to his position in Prague, Mr. Graber practiced law in the international, corporate, and government relations practices at the Reinhart Boerner Van Dueren Law Firm in Milwaukee. He was president and CEO of that firm from 2004 to 2006, and COO from 2002 to 2004.

Mr. Graber earned a Juris Doctor from Boston University Law School, after graduating Magna Cum Laude from Duke University. He and his wife, Alexandria (Alex), have two sons, Scott and Erik.

Graduate Commencement Student Speaker

Genesis Estrada

Genesis Estrada was born in El Paso, Texas, and was raised by a single parent who emigrated from Buenos Aires, Argentina. As a first-generation American, she pursued a Bachelor of Science at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and soon after followed her passion for health care at Concordia University Wisconsin School of Pharmacy.

At the age of 16, Genesis began working in a community pharmacy and aspired to become a pharmacist. While in pharmacy school, she continued to challenge herself by being one of the first dual-degree graduates who would receive a Doctor of Pharmacy and Master of Business Administration.

Following graduation, Genesis wants to continue to be a role model for her family. In addition to being bilingual, Genesis will strive to attain a leadership position that will oversee community pharmacy stores and integrate fundamental health care change within the community. After graduation, Genesis will join Walgreens Pharmacy as a pharmacist.

Undergraduate Commencement Student Speaker

Anne Karsten

Anne Karsten is a Public Relations major in the Batterman School of Business. As a Business Scholar, she is also an MBA graduate with a concentration in Strategic Marketing.

During her time at Concordia, Anne participated in multiple internships in fundraising, development, and marketing in Milwaukee, Chicago, and Washington, D.C. At Concordia, Anne was the president of a political club, an athlete on the women’s triathlon team, and a student ambassador. As a member of the Intercollegiate Studies Institute, Anne has traveled all over the country for the past two years, representing Concordia as an Honors Fellow with the organization. Anne has a passion for political action and is a Wisconsin gubernatorial appointee to an advisory council that advocates for justice-involved youth. After graduation, Anne will pursue a career in political consulting and fundraising.

Anne was born and raised in small-town Wisconsin. The daughter of small business owners, Anne has a sister, Mary (’18), a brother Fred, and sister-in-law Angela. Anne loves being an aunt to her three nieces. In her spare time, she enjoys running, playing the piano, traveling, and spending time with her fiancé, Seth.