Gov. Bobby Jindal was named Thursday as the keynote speaker at Liberty University’s 2014 Commencement ceremony.
It’s highly sought-after gig for presidential candidates seeking the support of the conservative Christian community.
“Many believe he could hold the highest office in the land someday,” said Liberty University President Jerry Falwell in prepared statement. “I believe he will be an inspiration to our graduates, not only because of his life’s story, but because he shares many of the conservative and Christian values that Liberty University graduates hold dear.”
Liberty was founded in 1971 by Falwell’s late father, the televangelist and political commentator of the same name. The Lynchburg, Va. college calls itself the largest private Christian university in the world. It has 350 programs and claims more than 100,000 residential and online students.
Notable alumni include Tony Perkins, a former Louisiana legislator who now is in charge of the Family Research Council, a Washington, D.C.-based group that advocates conservative Christian values in government policy and opposes of gay rights.
In an interview with The Washington Post, Falwell said he was hesitant to give his personal opinion of Jindal since they have never met. Instead, he deferred to Liberty’s law school dean, Mat Staver.
“He’s a committed Christian,” Falwell said. “Mat Staver said he heard him speak and he sounded like a Baptist preacher.”
Jindal’s May 10 speech will begin at 10 a.m. in Williams Stadium on the 7,000-acre campus near the Blue Ridge Mountains.