Campus & Community

CEO of Related Urban to be keynote speaker at PBSC’s commencement

Kenneth A. Himmel

Palm Beach State College will welcome Kenneth A. Himmel, president and CEO of Related Urban, the nation’s leading developer of large-scale mixed-use properties, as the keynote speaker during the College’s 2023 fall commencement ceremony at 6 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 19, at The Ballpark of the Palm Beaches in West Palm Beach.

During the ceremony, PBSC will award degrees and certificates to more than 1,800 graduates including more than 900 graduates of the Associate in Arts degree program and more than 900 graduates of the Associate in Science, Bachelor of Applied Science and Bachelor of Science degree programs and the certificate programs.

Along with recognizing graduates, PBSC will present an honorary degree to entrepreneur and philanthropist George T. Elmore, who is the founder and president of Delray Beach based Hardrives, Inc., one of Florida’s leading heavy/highway contractors, providing high-quality road construction services since the 1950s. Elmore has also been a PBSC Foundation board member since 2011 and PBSC donor for over 30 years committed to supporting students in their educational pursuits.

The event, which will be livestreamed on PBSC’s website, will also celebrate the culmination of the College’s 90th anniversary year with a fireworks display.

Himmel is an expert in creating thriving developments that bring forth the energy and vitality of an urban destination that resonates with existing local lifestyle and culture.

Under Himmel’s leadership, Related Urban captured the world’s attention with iconic, award-winning destinations that include The Square in West Palm Beach; Time Warner Center and Hudson Yards in New York; the Grand Avenue redevelopment project in downtown Los Angeles; and Related Santa Clara in Santa Clara, Calif.

His past developments reflect his success: Water Tower Place and 730 North Michigan in Chicago; Copley Place in Boston; Reston Town Center in Reston, Virginia; and Pacific Place in Seattle. Mr. Himmel is also responsible for the formation of a restaurant collection in Boston that includes the legendary Grill 23 & Bar, The Harvest Restaurant, The Banks Fish House and Bistro du Midi. Himmel is the creator and the Managing General Partner for the restaurant collection at Columbus Circle, New York City including the legendary Per Se with chef Thomas Keller and Porter House with chef Michael Lomonaco.

Himmel received a Bachelor of Science degree with distinction from Cornell University – School of Hotel Administration (where he fosters ongoing mentorship), and a Bachelor of Science degree from The College of William and Mary.

He lives in Palm Beach and Marblehead, Mass., and is a member of the Historical Society of Palm Beach County and on the Board of the Kravis Center for the Performing Arts.

For more information on PBSC’s graduation, visit

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