DOTHAN - Former Dothan Mayor Pat Thomas challenged Troy University graduates to mentor others and make a difference in their communities by giving back.
Thomas delivered the keynote address during the spring commencement ceremony for TROY's Dothan Campus on Friday, May 16, at the Dothan Civic Center. About 153 students received degrees this spring at the Dothan Campus.
Thomas challenged graduates to continue to achieve.
"Today is not the culmination of the process, it's merely the next step," Thomas said. "My challenge to you is never stop learning."
He urged graduates to pass on their knowledge and skills by becoming mentors to others.
"It's not as hard as you think, it's not a fulltime job, but it's tremendously important that you share your knowledge and life experiences with others," Thomas said. "Being a mentor is as simple as sharing advice with someone."
He also challenged graduates to give back to the community by sharing their time, talent and resources.
"Find a cause that fits your belief system and engage in that cause," Thomas said. "Your involvement will enhance another's chance at their path forward."
Thomas served as Mayor of Dothan from 2005-2009. Prior to that, he served on the Dothan City Commission from 1997-2001.
Since 1983 Thomas has served as president of his family business, Dothan Awning Company, a home improvements and construction company with a service area that includes Alabama, Georgia and Florida. He is a licensed Alabama general contractor, homebuilder, and a certified contractor in Florida. Thomas was selected as Small Business Person of the Year in 1995, and again in 2010.