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The co-owner of the Boston Celtics surprised a bunch of graduates at UMass Boston when he announced that he was giving each of them $1,000.
My commencement speaker didn’t do that. He just gave me “words of wisdom.” How the hell am I supposed to buy beer with that?
55-year-old Rob Hale has a net worth of 5 billion dollars. He became a minority owner in the Celtics back in 2012 after founding his company, Granite Telecom.
So, that makes him a more than worthy commencement speaker for the 2,500 UMass graduates ready to put their expensive pieces of paper to good use.
Hale offered some self-deprecating remarks that are sure to be a hit at any commencement address.
“Have you met someone who lost a billion dollars before?” Hale asked. “There’s a very good chance I’m the biggest loser you’ve ever met. And now you guys are getting career advice from me.”
Those students have definitely met bigger losers. Surely, there was a healthy amount of gender studies and philosophy majors on hand, plus the other commencement speaker was Sen. Elizabeth Warren.
Those are idiots; not the guy who co-owns the Celtics, but I get what he was going for.
Hale Had Quite The Gift For UMass Grads
“These are turbulent times. You guys have survived, you have prospered, you are to be celebrated,” Hale said. “We want to give you two gifts. The first is a gift to you. The second is the gift of giving.”
He gave each graduate $1,000. That means that he handed out a total of — 2,500 students… 1,000 students…. carry the 1… — egad, man; that’s $2.5 million.
His idea was that grads are supposed to keep half of the money while they’re encouraged to give away the other half.
That means they’ll keep — divide by 2… carry the 1… — $500 to keep and $500 to give away.
Man, here’s the lesson: if you need a commencement speaker, get Rob Hale on the blower.
He gave an address at his alma mater, Quincy College, in 2021, and also gave those students $1,000 each.
Follow on Twitter: @Matt_Reigle