High-Tech CEO To Deliver Cal-U of PA Commencement Address

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Cal U alumnus Jerry Salandro says It’s no coincidence America’s decline in economy coincides with its decline in character and ethics and explains to audiences why growing up poor in America was the best business school on earth.

"Years ago leaders were people of high character who were expected to do the right thing but today... not so much"

When Cal-U alum Jerry Salandro returns this weekend to deliver the commencement address it won’t be his first time back to campus since he left with his degree. Over the years Mr. Salandro came to his alma mater’s aid with high-tech solutions to video difficulties in both the counseling and sports programs. His company’s products for both signal routing and digital video study can be found throughout the campus. In2002 Jerry was honored by Cal-U with the Jackman award for distinguished alumni. Though Salandro has garnered many awards throughout his career. The one closest to his heart is the one he claims no one should expect an award for; the American Business Ethics Award.

“Years ago leaders were people of high character who were expected to do the right thing but today... not so much” Salandro offers. He theorizes that our country’s current economic crisis came about as a result of the ‘if it feels good, do it’ mentality that has existed in our country for the past few generations. “Leaders of corporations do the wrong thing and their employees follow suit,” Salandro offers, “if you truly want to change ethics we ALL have to do the right thing. If everyone in the corporation remains principled it effects change everywhere, even at the top.”

"We’ve now seen dozens of examples detailing how Wall Street, High-Finance, Healthcare and Auto-Execs ignored ethics for so long it became business as usual. Salandro, once highly placed in the auto industry himself, says that it’s not difficult to get back on track if we remember who we are and work to regain the global identity our ancestors sought to put in place. The problems, he feels, began when America drifted from a character based society to a personality based one. While he admits that a good personality is worthy trait, Salandro says it must be wrapped around a deeper package that includes honesty and integrity; “You’d never hear a mother say she didn’t care if her children grew up to be dishonest scoundrels as long as they had great personalities.”

Salandro, who grew up poor in western Pennsylvania coal mining country, says that it was the lessons he learned from his early life that helped him rise above but remember his roots. Living in a single family home with, at one point, thirty-nine extended family members meant working together for the benefit of all. Salandro advises; “The founding fathers knew what they were doing when they laid the foundation of our country… hard work and determination coupled with honesty and integrity created the greatest economy the world has ever seen.”

Audiences seem hungry for the powerful and motivational messages Salandro delivers as he travels the country during speaking engagements. He encourages Corporations, government leaders, rank and file workers, teachers and students to add high morals and ethics to their list of career goals. Jerry challenges his audiences to remember and return to Americas roots, simple and basic principles that will serve themselves and their country well.

Jerry Salandro founded IRIS Technologies in 1987. An expert with more than 30 years of experience using video technology to teach students, athletes and professionals, Jerry holds 56 patent claims on video devices used across the country in places like the Pentagon, NASA and Comcast as well as in colleges and high schools from New Hampshire to California. Jerry is a graduate of the California University of Pennsylvania and Indiana University of Pennsylvania, where he received his Master's Degree in Education. Salandro has received the Business Person of the Year Award from the Westmoreland Economic Development Corporation, the Distinguished Alumni Award from California University and the Business Ethics Award from American Business Ethics Association. His company was nominated in the top 50 fastest growing companies in Western Pennsylvania.

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Robert Firment

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