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Denita Willoughby of Southern California Gas Company to be Commencement Speaker at Pacific Oaks College Graduation

Published on Thursday, April 11, 2013 | 7:53 pm

Denita Willoughby, Southern California Gas Company regional vice president of external affairs, will be the commencement speaker at Pacific Oaks College graduation ceremony on May 4, 2013 at Pasadena Civic Center. It will be the 53rd commencement ceremony for the 70 year-old Pasadena educational institution.

“We are delighted to have Ms. Willoughby as our commencement speaker this year,” said Pacific Oaks College President Ezat Parnia, PhD. “Denita is an inspiring and successful young woman who is able to encourage and motivate our graduates by following her example of accomplishments.”

As regional vice president of external affairs for SoCalGas, Denita Willoughby leads the company’s community relations, public affairs and media and employee communications efforts. Previously, Ms. Willoughby was chief executive officer of The Willoughby Group, a management consulting firm she founded that specializes in executive services, business development and government relations.

Before starting her own firm, Ms. Willoughby was with AT&T for more than 15 years. From 2006 to 2011, she served as vice president of external affairs and led the company’s local government and community affairs activities in the Greater Los Angeles area. At AT&T, Willoughby also served as vice president of TV Programming for the company’s U-Verse television venture and as regional sales vice president for SBC Communications.

Named by California Diversity Magazine as one of the “Most Powerful and Influential Women in California,” Ms. Willoughby has a master’s degree in business administration from Harvard University and a bachelor’s degree in engineering from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

She serves on the boards of Green Dot Public Schools, Vision to Learn, UNITE LA and California Institute of the Arts.

Pacific Oaks College will be graduating 396 students, receiving the following degrees: BA in Human Development and BA in Education; MA in Human Development, MA in Marital and Family Therapy, and MA in Education.

About Pacific Oaks College

Founded nearly 70 years ago by a small group of Quaker families, Pacific Oaks College is dedicated to the fundamental Quaker principles of inclusion, social justice, and the valuing of every human being. Pacific Oaks College is a nonprofit, accredited higher education institution offering bachelor’s-completion, master’s, and certificate programs in human development, marriage and family therapy, education, early childhood education, and teacher credentialing. It offers classes at its main campus in Pasadena and at a number of convenient off-site locations throughout California, as well as online. Since 1959, Pacific Oaks is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). For more information logon to

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