Graduates Will Receive Advice from “The Apprentice,” Kelly Perdew

April 13th, 2006 by Adam

The man Donald Trump chose to manage some of his most important and successful projects in NBC’s “The Apprentice” will speak at Plymouth State University’s Undergraduate Commencement, May 20 at 10 a.m. Entrepreneur Kelly Perdew will explore leadership themes highlighted in his new book, Take Command: 10 Leadership Principles I Learned in the Military and Put to Work for Donald Trump, and offer other secrets of success to PSU graduates.

For Perdew, effective leadership—whether in the business world, other professional fields or one’s personal life—is based on passion, perseverance and planning. During his 16-week job interview on the second season of “The Apprentice,” a reality television show produced by Donald Trump, Perdew’s skills and passion were tested many times as he vied for a spot on Trump’s staff. Throughout the series, Perdew was challenged to complete tasks ranging from selling ice cream and designing a women’s fashion line to creating a full marketing campaign for Pepsi-Cola. Perdew was also reviewed by a panel of four of the country’s leading CEOs, who recommended him to Trump..

As Trump’s “apprentice,” Perdew spent a year managing several of “The Donald’s” projects, including a commercial real estate site in Manhattan, Trump Tower in Tampa, Fla. and Trump Ice, a bottled water company. After his contract year with Trump, Kelly decided to move on and pursue his own entrepreneurial goals. Currently, he is the managing director of a venture capital fund called Angel-Led Venture Partners and is working on several real estate projects, including a Florida self-storage facility and a 600-acre fishing and hunting preserve in Montana. Perdew is also lending his military knowledge (he served as a military intelligence officer for the U.S. Army) to television viewers as host of the Military Channel series “GI Factory,” which explores military technology and history.

Throughout his life, Perdew has believed in the importance of higher education. Perdew earned his B.S. at the United States Military Academy, West Point, his M.B.A. from the Anderson School at UCLA and his J.D. from the UCLA School of Law. .

According to Perdew, higher education is an essential step in improving one’s leadership skills and attaining one’s goals.

“The importance of a liberal education cannot be overstated. The thirst for knowledge and learning are not only what make life exciting, they are also what help prepare these young men and women to go out and overcome the many challenges they will face in life,” said Perdew.

Perdew says he is pleased to be chosen as PSU’s 2006 commencement speaker.

“Graduation is a very important day in students’ lives and the lives of their family and friends,” said Perdew. “I am honored and excited to speak to them on this momentous occasion.”

Arrangements for the appearance of Kelly Perdew made through Greater Talent Network, Inc., New York, N.Y. For more information on Perdew, please visit

Plymouth State University (PSU) is a regional comprehensive university offering a rich, student-focused learning environment for both undergraduate and graduate students. PSU offers 42 majors and 62 minors in programs that include education, business, humanities, arts, and natural and social sciences. The College of Graduate Studies offers coursework that promotes research, best practices and reflection in locations on- and off-campus as well as online. For non-traditional students, PSU’s Frost School of Continuing and Professional Studies offers working professionals opportunities to pursue an undergraduate degree by attending classes in the evenings, weekends and online. Located in a beautiful New England setting, Plymouth State University has been recognized as one of the “Best in the Northeast” by The Princeton Review.