OSWEGO — SUNY Oswego’s winter commencement ceremony Dec. 13 will feature as speaker an alumnus of the college who brought an entrepreneurial spirit to public broadcasting that is transforming the field.
As president and chief executive officer of WCNY Public Media since 2005, Robert J. Daino has launched a number of groundbreaking projects, including Centralcast, which makes the Syracuse-based station a hub for public broadcasting content in the Northeast.
The first collaboration of its kind within the PBS system, Centralcast delivers content for all public broadcasting stations in New York and New Jersey as well as Philadelphia, Charlotte and many other stations across the country, reaching more than 20 percent of the nation’s PBS viewers.
Under Daino’s leadership, WCNY has grown to five digital broadcast television channels and three digital radio channels.
Its television and radio producers create more local programming — much of it award winning — than two-thirds of other public media nationwide.
And it is the only station in the national PBS system of nearly 175 stations to have eliminated televised pledge breaks, giving WCNY’s 1.8 million viewers an additional 330 hours of programming annually.
In April, WCNY was chosen as CenterState Corporation for Economic Opportunity’s Not-for-Profit Business of the Year.
WCNY built its new Broadcast and Education Center in Syracuse’s Near Westside neighborhood and is now an anchor for the revitalization of this once vibrant industrial district.
The new facility is a model of green technology. WCNY is seeking Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design certification at the platinum level, the nation’s highest green standard.
The public station’s new headquarters includes another industry groundbreaking initiative: a state-of-the-art Education Center. It offers a variety of hands-on programs for area secondary school students, including Enterprise America, a co-curricular experience that gives students the opportunity to apply classroom knowledge while running businesses in a simulated city.
A native of Syracuse, Daino earned his bachelor’s degree in computer science at Oswego in 1986. He began his professional career at Syracuse’s General Electric Co., first part time during college and then full time upon graduation.
After serving in many technical and senior management positions during his 13 years at GE, he left to found his own Syracuse-based software company and became a nationally recognized expert on change and workflow management.
He has developed software and systems in highly complex integrated electronic environments for the U.S. Navy, the Federal Aviation Administration and a multitude of commercial businesses.
He remains president and chief executive officer of his software company, PROMERGENT, and a second company, ServeCentral.
Daino has been recognized for his transformational business and community leadership with a 2014 Temple Adath Yeshurun Citizen of the Year Award, 2013 YWCA Academy of Diversity Achievers Award and a 2013 Near Westside Initiative Groundbreakers Award.
He was honored with a 2003 Greater Syracuse Chamber of Commerce Business of the Year Award, 2002 Human Resources Excellence Award from the Central New York Society of Human Resource Management, and the 2002 Fleet Bank Small Business Leadership Award.
SUNY Oswego’s winter commencement ceremony will begin at 10 a.m. Dec. 13. Open to ticket holders, the Saturday morning ceremony in the college’s Marano Campus Center will be publicly viewable online from a link on the college’s homepage.
For more information about December graduation, visit http://www.oswego.edu/academics/commencement