|February 23, 2010|
Warner Bros. studio chief Alan Horn to deliver 2010 Commencement address
Alan Horn '64, president and chief operating officer of Warner Bros., will be the featured speaker at Union’s 216th Commencement, College officials announced today.
Approximately 500 students in the Class of 2010 will receive degrees during the ceremony, scheduled for 10 a.m. Sunday, June 13, on Hull Plaza.
“Under Alan Horn's leadership, Warner Brothers has become one of Hollywood’s most influential and successful movie studios,” said College President Stephen C. Ainlay. “He has often been celebrated for his creativity, business acumen and insights into popular culture, and we are delighted he will return to the College to share his perspectives with our Class of 2010."
Warner Bros. is responsible for blockbusters such as “The Dark Knight” and all six films in the Harry Potter franchise. In 2009, the studio’s domestic box office soared to an industry record $2.13 billion, and overseas receipts reached $1.88 billion.
In addition to working closely with Barry Meyer, the company’s chairman and CEO, Horn oversees the studio’s theatrical and home entertainment operations, including the Warner Bros. Pictures Group, Warner Premiere and Warner Home Video. He also oversees New Line Cinema, which became a part of Warner Bros. in early 2008.
“I’m honored to be delivering the commencement address and look forward to revisiting the campus in June,” said Horn, who will receive an honorary doctor of fine arts degree.
Horn, who grew up on Long Island, spoke at ReUnion last spring, where he discussed the entertainment business and his time at Union, where he graduated with an economics degree. He received a Master of Business Administration (with distinction) from Harvard Business School before serving for nearly five years in the U.S. Air Force. He achieved the rank of captain.
In 1987, he co-founded Castle Rock Entertainment, where he served as chairman and CEO until taking on his current role. At Castle Rock, Horn produced the TV series “Seinfeld”and was responsible for Best Picture Oscar nominees such as “A Few Good Men,” “The Shawshank Redemption” and “The Green Mile.” Before that, Horn served as chairman and CEO of Embassy Communications, a company owned by A. Jerrold Perenchio and legendary producer Norman Lear. He also spent two years in brand management with Procter & Gamble.
Horn is a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, the Hollywood Radio and Television Society and the Museum of Broadcasting. In 2004, he received the Will Rogers Motion Picture Pioneers Foundation’s Pioneer of the Year Award, and in 2007 he was honored with the Harvard Business School’s Leadership Award. Most recently, Horn received the Producers Guild America’s 2008 Milestone Award.
Horn serves on the board of directors of the American Film Institute; as a vice chairman of the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC); on the board of trustees for the Autry National Center in Los Angeles; and on the board of Harvard-Westlake School. He is also a member of the Harvard Business School Dean’s Board of Advisors and a founding board member of the Environmental Media Association.
Horn and his wife, Cindy, have two daughters, Cody and Cassidy.
Union College, founded in 1795 as the first college chartered by the New York State Board of Regents, offers programs in the liberal arts and engineering to 2,100 undergraduates of high academic promise and strong personal motivation. Union, with its long history of blending disciplines, is a leader in educating students to be engaged, innovative and ethical contributors to an increasingly diverse, global and technologically complex society.