Michelle Obama
First Lady Michelle Obama poses for a picture alongside volunteers helping with a community service project at the Vinson Hall Retirement Community in McLean, Va., Sept. 11. The first lady will be the commencement speaker at this year's Universtiy of Northern Iowa graduation ceremony thanks to a hand-written letter from Ann Geneva.

The mother of Army Contracting Command-Rock Island student aide Adam Geneva put her words into action - and the graduates at University of Northern Iowa will benefit.

Ann Geneva's hand-written letter sent to President Barack Obama last year set into motion the recent announcement that first lady Michelle Obama will address the students during the commencement ceremony at the Cedar Falls, Iowa, school this May.

Ann, a kindergarten teacher in Bettendorf, Iowa, sent her letter in July 2010, inviting the president to speak at UNI's graduation ceremony.

"In late February or early March, we received a message on our home answering machine that President Obama was not able to attend the graduation, Adam said. "Later that month, my mom received a phone call from Mrs. Obama's office saying that the first lady would be speaking at UNI's graduation."

Adam, a graduating senior in accounting and financial management, said he and his family will attend the ceremony on May 7, the day before mother's day. He's unaware of any potential for he and his family to meet with Mrs. Obama during her visit, or if his mother's letter will be mentioned during the commencement speech.

"If I get an opportunity to talk to the first lady, I will thank her for speaking at UNI's graduation," said Adam. "This will be a memory for a life time."

In the meantime, Adam will focus on his school work and prepare for finals. ACC-RI's Installations Division, public works team, will welcome him back in June. According Rosanne Spencer, his supervisor on the public works team, he has worked diligently the past two summer and winter breaks providing administrative support in addition to other functions.

"He quickly learned our automated contracting system and provided invaluable assistance in closing out contracts through the system," said Spencer. "He also provided assistance in establishing tracking sheets for contractor invoices and reviewing construction contract documentation for contract specialists."

Page last updated Fri July 22nd, 2011 at 12:16