Baltimore, Md., May 13, 2022 – Cristo Rey Jesuit High School is excited to welcome Mr. Niles R. Ford, PhD and Chief of the Baltimore City Fire Department as this year’s commencement speaker. Mr. Ford will speak to the graduating class of 2022 at the school’s graduation ceremony on Sunday, June 12, 2022. Cristo Rey Jesuit High School is a private school providing students from across Baltimore City with a college preparatory-education and real-life work experience through a unique Corporate Internship Program.
Looking ahead to his speech, Chief Ford noted, “It is a privilege and an honor to be afforded the opportunity to speak to the motivated graduates of the Class of 2022. These young scholars are the future leaders and change-makers of Baltimore, and the reason we will continue to advance the Baltimore City Fire Department, while promoting safety and breaking down barriers for career opportunities within the agency.”
Chief Ford’s legacy includes over 30 years of experience in the fire service, having held multiple management and leadership roles across the country including Fire Chief and City Manager. He has been the Chief of the Baltimore City Fire Department for the past eight years, implementing a variety of new programs and initiatives. Under Dr. Ford’s leadership, the EMS ambulance fleet has increased by 30% and 2020 and 2021 both recorded the lowest number of fire deaths in the history of the Baltimore City Fire Department. Chief Ford is a visionary within the community, redesigning the city’s hiring process, and implementing EMT training into high schools, allowing students to become full time employees of the agency upon graduation. Chief Ford’s focus remains steadfast on service and cultivating positive relationships and interactions within the community..
Cristo Rey Jesuit High School President, Dr. Bill Heiser commented, “We are honored to have Dr. Ford delivering this year’s commencement address. His innovative leadership and dedication to the safety of Baltimore communities is an inspiration to us all and the students we serve at Cristo Rey.”
The Cristo Rey Jesuit High School commencement ceremony will be held on Sunday, June 12 at 2pm at the Cathedral of Mary our Queen in Baltimore. In attendance will be the 77 members of the senior graduating class, their families, and faculty and staff from Cristo Rey. Also speaking during the ceremony will be the school’s valedictorian, the senior with the highest grade point average, and salutatorian, the student who has been recognized as the best intern over the course of their four years participating within the school’s ground-breaking Corporate Internship Program. The graduating class of 2022 will be joining 11 previous graduation classes that have earned 100% college acceptances.