Alumnus and CEO of Prime Companies to address Paul Smith’s College graduates

May 2, 2022 | News

PAUL SMITHS, NY – Ken M. Raymond, founder and CEO of Prime Companies, will be the keynote speaker during the 75th Commencement at Paul Smith’s College on Saturday, May 7. He will also be recognized at the ceremony, receiving an honorary degree from his alma mater.

Raymond graduated from PSC in 1968, earning an associate degree in Hotel and Restaurant Management and has had a successful career in real estate, finance, and hospitality for over forty years. He has owned and managed several hotels, including Holiday Inn Express, Hilton Homewood Suites, Hotel Indigo, and The Pavilion Grand Hotel. Prime Companies also develops land for residential sub-divisions and commercial buildings.

Ken credits Paul Smith’s College for his successful career, stating that “the college helped me get my foot in the door. We were highly trained to work in the industry right out of college, and employers wanted to hire you because of it. They used to come to campus every week to interview prospective employees.”

Ken and his wife Patricia, also a PSC alumnus, have generously supported the College, serving as dedicated volunteers at various events, issuing multiple challenges to their fellow alumni to increase alumni participation rate, and have been heavily involved in the College’s corporate connections initiatives. Ken has been a member of the Paul Smith’s College Board of Trustees since 2016 and currently serves on the Development, Enrollment/Student Affairs, and Governance committees.

In 2020, Raymond was inducted into the prestigious Marquis Who’s Who biographical registry based on his notable accomplishments and prominence in the field. Within the same year, he was also awarded the Civitella Entrepreneur of the Year by Siena College. The award is given to an individual who has excelled as an entrepreneur, has made a positive impact on the local community, and is driven by the values of the College.

In addition to the serving on the PSC Board of Trustees, Ken also serves on the board at Siena College, the American Cancer Society (he is a two-time cancer survivor), St. Gregory’s School for Boys, Coaches vs. Cancer, Friends of Adoption, Berkshire Bank, and is the President of Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Albany.

This year’s commencement will take place outdoors on the Great Lawn. In the event of inclement weather, tickets will be required to enter the Saunders Gymnasium. Each graduate was given four tickets for guests to attend the ceremony. Should this event move indoors, an announcement will be sent to the graduates and online ( at least 48 hours in advance. The commencement ceremony will also be broadcast via livestream.

At Paul Smith’s College, it’s about the experience. As the only four-year institution of higher education located in the Adirondack Park in upstate New York, Paul Smith’s provides real-world, hands-on learning in fields such as business and hospitality, culinary management, forestry, environmental sciences and natural resources. We are able to draw on industries and resources available in our own backyard while preparing students for successful careers anywhere. Our community of resourceful, enterprising, supportive and adventurous individuals collectively provide experiential education, student support in the classroom and beyond, and meaningful opportunities for our alumni. We pride ourselves on research and advocacy on issues that improve our planet and the lives of the people who inhabit it. Learn more at »



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