On December 14, the University of Alabama Birmingham (UAB) presented its President’s Medal to U.S. Senator Richard Shelby, R-Alabama, during the school’s commencement ceremonies.
“Humbled to receive the UAB President’s Medal at today’s commencement ceremony,” Senator Shelby said on social media. “It is an honor to represent such a distinguished institution and join the list of renowned recipients awarded in years prior. I am proud to continue supporting medical research and programs at UAB.”
UAB President UAB President Ray Watts presented Shelby with the award.
Commencement ceremonies were held at the University of Alabama at Birmingham on Saturday, Dec. 14.
Approximately 1,577 students graduated from UAB during the fall semester. An estimated 850 students participated in the ceremonies.
The commencement ceremony was held in Bartow Arena.
Shelby received the Medal for his longtime advocacy of federally funded research. The leading-edge research conducted at UAB and other prominent universities continues to have a profound impact on health and quality of life, educational opportunity, technology, and economic development across Alabama and the United States the University said in a statement.
Senator Shelby has served in the U.S. Senate since 1987. Prior to that he represented Alabama’s Seventh Congressional District for eight years. Prior to his congressional service Shelby represented Tuscaloosa County in the Alabama State Senate. Senator Shelby chairs the powerful Senate Appropriations Committee.
Senator Shelby is the longest serving U.S. Senator in the history of Alabama. Robert Byrd, D-West Virginia, holds the record as the longest serving Senator in American history with nearly 51 and a half years until his death in 2010. Currently the longest serving Senator is Patrick Leahy, D-Vermont, who has been in the Senate since 1975 when Gerald Ford (R) was still President. Leahy is currently the fifth longest serving all time.