Thomas went to prison as a 17-year old, for kidnapping and assault. So, that is where he finished his high school education. When he served his sentence, he rebuilt his life and went on to earn a doctorate in health sciences. Thomas now serves as a full-time DME coordinator providing durable medical equipment for post-surgical orthopedic patients.
Thomas seems a little defensive about the honor of speaking at a high school graduation, or at least the media reports make him appear to be so. But, really, the person who should be defensive is the Governor, John Hickenlooper.
Thomas and 160 others have asked Hickenlooper for pardons. Evidently, well informed about the neglect and bone-headed plitical calculations that many governors make, Thomas does not really expect a response to his application until the end of Hickenlooper's second term (four year from now). See story here.