Philanthropist and Investment Icon David Tepper (TPR 1982) delivered the keynote address at Carnegie Mellon University’s 121st Commencement on May 20, 2018.
Keynote Speaker David Tepper - Commencement 2018
It is now my distinct pleasure to introduce our keynote speaker business leader investment icon philanthropist Business School alum university trustee and Carnegie Mellon champion. David Alan Tepper Oh I have several pages to read David through. He is legendary business savvy and investment expertise. David David has earned an unrivaled reputation as one of the most successful hedge fund managers in the world. But he's equally well known for his passion for philanthropy. His belief in the power of higher education and of course his exceptional service and generosity to his alma mater Carnegie Mellon University. David grew up not too far from here in Stanton Heights neighborhood of Pittsburgh. The middle of three children I should just add so that Davis mother Roberta is here with us. Would you please acknowledge Roberta he went to the University of Pittsburgh for his undergraduate degree in economics before receiving his MBA in 1982 from our Graduate School of Industrial Administration. It wasn't called the Tepper's school back there I know. In 1985 he was recruited by Goldman Sachs as a credit analyst and within just six months he became the head trader under newly established high yield bond group. This was the first clue that Dave it was a fur force to be reckoned with on Wall Street. In 1993 the same year the web entered the public domain. David stablished Appaloosa Management and over the last 25 years has built an impressively consistent record of high returns Appaloosa currently has approximately 17 billion under management and has yielded gross returns close to 40 percent per year over the past 20 years.
Through David Tepper charitable foundation his philanthropy has expanded opportunities for education help to fight hunger and homelessness and provided much needed disaster relief. He has generously donated a total of hundred and twenty five million to Carnegie Mellon University. Including naming and endowing the Tepper School of Business where he serves as the school's business board of advisors and in 2013. His most recent transformative gift enabled the creation of a state of the art facility on the new David A. Tepper quadrangle scheduled to open this fall at more than 300 thousand square feet. This building will serve as the new home for the Tepper School of Business as well as a major hub for collaboration innovation creativity and entrepreneurship at Carnegie Mellon Tepper quad will create unprecedented opportunities to break new barriers. And to work toward new discoveries new technologies new businesses and new forms of expression as our institution continues to grow and build for an evolving future. The Tepper quad is that physical realization of a new model for 21st Century Research and Education and it will transform the CMU experience for generations of students to come Dave it has given so much to Carnegie Mellon to our nation and the world and we're delighted to welcome him back to campus to share his wisdom with the Class of 2018. Please join me in extending a warm welcome to David A. TAPPER David good morning. Class of 2018 I have a speech here. Nice binder I think I might read it later but I just a couple observation first that I didn't think about before back over there I was standing next to Kevin. He's right there and we were talking. His voice was shaking. My voice was shaking.
We were both nervous as I was going to say another word but I'm told I'm not supposed to say those words today. So we're coming out and we're we're there and we're both kind of like Sheekey a little bit and then Kevin Kevin starts straightening up he starts getting the strength about. And he says I'm starting to feel it. These are my people my people. So we say that he pointed out some friends over there. We said Hadas family over there. His mother Lauren who told me a couple of stories about Kevin that I'm not going to say now. Went up the aisle shake a few hands there said alota and wall high and will get to see you over there. And you know Kevin just came up here and gave the most fantastic speech. And I'm thinking Oh crap I came up just couldn't because I got something I got to read and twice as long and I can't just kind of adlib it. And then I was thinking well you know what you guys cabbage family you guys out here. Students please. All you guys here you're my people too. OK. You're my people too. You're Carnegie Mellon people. Carnegie Mellon students Carnegie Mellon graduates my people. So help me out today I need help because I've got to read this and I don't know how it's going to go. So we'll to see. All right. Let me start by thanking foreign him for that kind introduction for that kind introduction. I've got to get this kind of right here.
I don't know what I'm going to do after his leadership of Carnegie Mellon as you know for him. This place means the world to me. It really is a treasure. There's no other university that brings together business. Where are you. Thank you. The Arndt's the humanities the sciences and the social sciences the way CMU does the right to see you. Thanks also to my fellow trustees to my fellow alumni who are all over the place here as your Terry I apologize. They told me not to leave the podium but I don't get I'm sorry about that engineering. Can I get a hardhat up here this thing. All right. I lost my place but I'll try. Thanks also to my fellow trustees my fellow alumni and most of all to you guys your students and to your parents. A special thanks to my family and friends who are here today. And of course to my 86 year old mom. I think she's over there hi mom were you over there someplace. Mom where are you mom someplace over there. I think my mom's a little happy and proud today. But my mom sometimes can be a pain in the butt and I'm sure your parents can be too. But there is nobody on earth. I own War II and there's nobody on earth you are more than your parents in life in life. You should recognize your parents. So let's take a moment and thank them. And last but not least I want to congratulate and thank my fellow honorary doctors at. Where are you Adam at as a very funny lady.
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