DiPiero, Bogdan Among Speakers at YSU Commencement

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – Robert J. “Bob” DiPiero and student Colleen Mary Davis will speak at Youngstown State University’s fall undergraduate commencement ceremony at 1 p.m. Sunday in Beeghly Center. 

Cornel Bogdan and student Dominic Vito “Nico” Morgione are set to speak at the graduate commencement ceremony at 5 p.m. in Beeghly Center.

Since his first single in 1983, Hall of Fame songwriter DiPiero has been responsible for a string of country music hits. One of Nashville’s most prolific and consistent songwriters, more than 1,000 of his songs have been recorded by other artists. He also has logged many hit singles and 15 No. 1 hits. 

DiPiero’s songs have been featured in TV shows, commercials and movies. Among his awards are 50 BMI Million – Air honors, multiple Songwriter of the Year awards and two consecutive Triple Play awards for three No. 1 songs within a year.

In 2007, DiPiero was inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame and Nashville’s Walk of Fame. In 2014, the Country Music Hall of Fame honored him with its “Poets and Prophets Series: Salute to Legendary Songwriter Bob DiPiero,” and the Country Music Association also presented him with the CMA Chairman’s Award. 

On Nov. 7, 2017, BMI presented him with its Icon Award, celebrating his outstanding career achievement and honoring his influence on generations of music makers.

Davis is graduating with her bachelor of science in business administration, majoring in human resource management and minoring in nonprofit leadership. Throughout her time at YSU, she was a member of the Sokolov Honors College and has served as the president of the Society for Human Resource Management and vice president of the Student Nonprofit Leadership Organization. She was also chosen to receive one of the Williamson College of Business Administration Fall 2023 Senior Leadership Awards.

After graduation, Davis will begin her professional career in human resources and is striving to work for a nonprofit organization. She also has ambitions to obtain her master’s degree in business administration to continue her love of education, become a collegiate professor and share her knowledge and experience with the next generation of professionals.

Bogdan began his career in radio by taking an internship at the Youngstown Society for The Blind, where he honed his on-air skills hosting radio talk shows and reading periodicals to vision-impaired citizens. 

In 1980, he worked as the youngest morning host in Youngstown radio history and eventually moved up to program director of WMGZ, bringing in its biggest ratings ever. Bogdan also served as one of the founding members of the YSU station “The Underground Sound” and an entertainment writer for The Jambar.

In 1988, he joined a brand-new classic rock station starting in the Youngstown area called WNCD CD106 The Wolf, where he remained for over 30 years. He later transitioned into upper management, becoming sales manager of both WNCD & WAKZ. In 2002, he launched a weekly radio show called “Tangled Up in Blues,” broadcasting throughout the country via every streaming service – on WYFM Y103. 

In 2005, Bogdan became a member of “Blues in Schools,” an opportunity that allowed him to speak to high school and college classes about the significance of the blues genre. He works as a senior account manager for Cumulus Media – Youngstown.

Bogdan remains heavily involved in the community, partnering with charities including Akron Children’s Hospital; The Ray “Boom Boom” Mancini Foundation; Second Harvest Food Bank of the Mahoning Valley; Hope House; Disabled Veterans; and Inspiring Minds. Additionally, he operates a company of haunted attractions, including Ghoul Mansion in Sharon, Pa., and The ExFEARience at Eastwood Fields.

Born and raised in the Mahoning Valley, Morgione is a 2018 graduate of Ursuline High School and completed his undergraduate degree at YSU’s Williamson College of Business Administration in 2021 with a major in marketing. He will receive his master’s degree in business administration at the commencement. 

Morgione works at YSU’s Division of Workforce Education and Innovation as the associate director of business development and industry partnerships. In his free time, he enjoys playing live music with local band RDNA.

Published by The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.