Kevin Plank
Kevin Plank ranked No. 577 on Forbes billionaire list. (The Daily Record/Maximilian Franz)

UMD picks Plank for commencement speaker

The University of Maryland, College Park is sticking close to home with its choice of commencement speaker this year.

Under Armour CEO (and noted UMD alumnus) Kevin Plank will deliver this year’s address at the spring commencement ceremony on May 18, the university announced Monday.

Plank was inspired to create a better-quality fabric — one that wicks away sweat keeps the wearer cool and dry — after football practice on a particularly sweltering summer day at the campus in 1995, according to the university.

Under Armour, in case you haven’t noticed, is now a global athletic-wear company with 14,000 employees and nearly $4 billion in revenue. But he’s not stopping with clothing: Plank recently unveiled his plans to redevelop 260 acres of the Port Covington industrial area in South Baltimore, creating new housing, offices, retail space and parks.

Mary Ann Ranking, the university’s senior vice president and provost, said in a statement that Plank embodies the entrepreneurial spirit the school wants to instill in all its students.


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