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Lisa Bachmann to Keynote WNEU Graduate Commencement Ceremony

SPRINGFIELD — Western New England University will confer doctoral, law, pharmacy, and master’s degrees during its 2016 Graduate Commencement Ceremony on Sunday, May 22 at 2 p.m. in the Alumni Healthful Living Center on campus. Degree candidates will receive their diplomas and traditional degree hoods.

Lisa Bachmann, executive vice president and chief merchandising and operating officer for Big Lots Inc., will provide the keynote address to the graduating class. Big Lots is a non-traditional discount retailer operating more than 1,400 stores in 47 states.

Bachmann is a 1983 graduate of Western New England University and received her MBA from the college in 1990. She began her career in accounting and finance at Casual Corner, one of the country’s largest specialty clothing retailers. She rose through the ranks to vice president of Planning and Allocation, overseeing the Casual Corner, August Max, and Petite Sophisticate brands. She later served as a senior vice president for Ames Department Stores.

In 2002, Bachmann accepted a position as senior vice president for Merchandise Planning and Allocation for Big Lots. Her role was later expanded to include responsibility for information technology in all areas of the company, as well as Distribution and Transportation Services.

Today, as chief merchandising and operating officer, she provides the strategic direction for the organization’s merchandising and corporate infrastructure, which includes building the company’s buying organization, improving execution, overseeing operational management, and creating shopping excitement.

Western New England University will provide live streaming video of the commencement ceremonies. The feed will be available at wne.edu/commencement.

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