Commerce and Insurance Commissioner Paula Flowers to Speak at Summer Commencement

Tennessee's Commissioner of Commerce and Insurance Paula Flowers will return to her alma mater to address more than 360 Tennessee Tech University summer graduates at 10 a.m., Aug. 2, in Hooper Eblen Center.

Flowers, a native of Monterey, took leadership of the Department of Commerce and Insurance this year after being appointed by Gov. Phil Bredesen. Previously she had served as special counsel for the department as an attorney for Farmer & Luna PLLC. She brought a variety of experience and education to the office, having obtained her bachelor's and master's degrees in civil engineering in addition to a law degree.

Prior to co-founding Farmer & Luna PLLC, she was an associate at the Nashville law firm Waller Lansden Dortch & Davis. Before she earned her law degree, Flowers worked for Lockheed Martin Energy Systems in Oak Ridge as an environmental compliance engineer.

Flowers holds responsibility for managing a variety of regulatory functions, including a division that oversees managed-care organizations serving more than a million TennCare enrollees. She also serves as the state's fire marshal, charged with guarding public safety and property by preventing and investigating public fire losses.

Flowers graduated with a bachelor's degree in civil engineering from TTU in 1990. She and her husband, Jim, have three children.

Students graduating from Tennessee Tech this summer hail from 11 states including Tennessee, 60 Tennessee counties and 5 foreign countries. They represent 30 undergraduate fields of study and 15 graduate fields. Following summer commencement, Tennessee Tech will have granted more than 50,000 degrees.

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