The December graduates at the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology will get to hear from the guy who runs the Skunk Works. Delivering the December 20 commencement address is Alton D. Romig, Jr., Lockheed Martin VP and program manager for the aerospace company's secret weapons program, which over the last 70 years has produced weapons like the U-2 spy plane, the SR-71 Blackbird, the F-117 stealth fighter, and now the F-35 fighter jet.
Romig is also a frequent donor to Mines President Heather Wilson's political campaigns in New Mexico. According to OpenSecrets.org, Romig has put about $3,350 in Wilson's campaign kitty. Romig's Lockheed Martin also manages the Sandia National Laboratory, which hired Wilson as a consultant after her stint in Congress. Wilson's consulting for Sandia has been implicated in a Department of Energy Inspector General's investigation of improper lobbying for a no-bid contract for Lockheed Martin.
But hey, it's graduation! Don't bug Alton about his pal Heather's consulting troubles. Let's just talk about how we can put our best and brightest to work securing global dominance through the military-industrial complex and how three-quarters of them will leave South Dakota right away to do such work.