BROCKTON, Mass (May 17, 2024) – Massachusetts Commissioner of Probation Pamerson O. Ifill will deliver the keynote address at Massasoit Community College’s 57th Commencement Ceremony on Thursday, May 23, 2024. Massasoit will confer degrees on nearly 800 graduates at the ceremony on the Brockton Campus that begins at 11:00 am.

Pamerson Ifill Headshot
Massachusetts Commissioner of Probation Pamerson Ifill, will deliver the keynote address at the College’s 57th Commencement Ceremony on Thursday, May 23, 2024 at 11:00 am. on the Brockton Campus. Courtesy photo.

Pamerson Ifill, former chair of the Massasoit Board of Trustees, is the 10th Commissioner of the Massachusetts Probation Service and the first Black commissioner in the Probation Service’s 146-year history.

A proud graduate of Massasoit Community College, Commissioner Ifill not only earned his first degree, but also met his wife, Kulnathee, another Massasoit student, and Ida Cerezo O’Donnell, life-long friend and mentor. First immigrating to the US as a Golden Gloves champion boxer, he earned a master’s degree from Brandeis University and a bachelor’s degree from Stonehill College.

“Massasoit Community College is an important part of my life and development,” said Mr. Pamerson Ifill, Massachusetts Commissioner of Probation. “I met my beautiful wife, ​Kulnathee, there and was introduced to ​Ida Cerezo O’Donnell, a staff member who was not only a mentor but a life-long friend who became family. As I reflect on all that I learned and experienced during my days at Massasoit, I can say there is no better foundation from which to build a better life for yourselves and your families. I know this year’s graduates will do great things!”

Commissioner Ifill began working as a juvenile probation officer and worked his way up the ranks during his 30-year career to become a Chief Probation Officer, Regional Supervisor, Deputy Commissioner, and in November 2023, he was sworn in as commissioner. Commissioner Ifill is a national leader in the criminal justice field and currently sits on the board of the American Probation and Parole Association.

In addition to Commissioner Ifill, students will hear remarks from College and Department of Higher Education leaders, a member of the faculty, Dr. Tara Gully-Hightower, and Odair Silvestre, this year’s student speaker graduating from Massasoit’s renowned Culinary Arts program.

“Commissioner Ifill’s connection to Brockton and Massasoit make him the ideal speaker to deliver an address to our graduates, said Bill Mitchell, Interim President of Massasoit Community College. “His commitment to education and inclusion aligns with the mission of Massasoit and the role we play in the journey of our students. We all look forward to his return to campus and hearing his address to our graduates.”

During Thursday’s ceremony, the College will present a posthumous honorary degree – an Associate in Humane Letters Honoris Causa – for Ray DiPasquale, Massasoit’s seventh president. The degree is given in recognition of his distinguished service to the College and will be accepted by members of his family.

About Massasoit Community College
Founded in 1966, Massasoit Community College offers students from southeastern Massachusetts and beyond access to more than 60 associate degree and certificate programs across arts, sciences, applied sciences, healthcare, and technology at locations in Brockton, Canton, Middleborough, and online. More than 900 students graduate with a degree or certificate each year from Massasoit, and 2,600 students annually enroll in non-credit community education or workforce development courses. Massasoit students are given access to wraparound services provided on campus to support their success inside and outside the classroom. For more information, visit

Learn more about Commencement

Alex J. Villanueva
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