Former University Trustee to Keynote BGSU Firelands Commencement
On Friday, May 4, J. Robert Sebo will present the keynote address for Bowling Green State University Firelands College’s 27th Commencement Ceremonies.
Sebo, a 1958 graduate of BGSU, is the retired senior vice president for Paychex Inc., Rochester, New York, and a former Trustee of Bowling Green State University.
“It is an honor to have Mr. Sebo speaking to our students upon their graduation,” said BGSU Firelands Dean William Balzer. “He has contributed a great deal to the recent success of BGSU and his acumen as a businessman speaks for itself. As a graduate of BGSU he is a great inspiration for our students.”
Born in Salem, Ohio, Sebo earned a bachelor of science in business administration from BGSU and also received an ROTC commission then served in the United States Army directly after graduation. He finished his tour of duty at the rank of First Lieutenant.
Sebo began his professional career with General Motors Corporation for 14 years and finished as a district sales manager. In 1974, he opened his own business, Paychex, Inc., in Cleveland which provided payroll services.
Starting the company with one employee, Sebo aided in the evolution of a publically held organization which now boasts 8,000 employees and does more than one billion dollars of business in 70 cities across the nation.
Sebo retired as Paychex, Inc., Senior Vice President in 1994 and he remained on the Board of Directors until 2006.
In 2002, Sebo became a Trustee for BGSU where he diligently served until 2011. His BGSU affiliations include membership in the Presidents Club, Heritage Society, Falcon Club, and Kappa Sigma Fraternity.
Sebo provided the lead gift for construction of BGSU’s Sebo Athletic Center and he established the Bob Sebo Football Scholarship, the Bob Sebo Endowed Scholarship in Jazz Studies, and the annual Bob Sebo Lecture Series in Entrepreneurship at the College of Business Administration.
In 2008, Sebo was inducted into the Dallas-Hamilton Entrepreneurial Hall of Fame, which recognizes both BGSU graduates and honorary degree holders who have achieved distinction for demonstrating an entrepreneurial spirit and founding, leading, or building new business enterprises that help shape economies and improve the quality of life.
Sebo and his wife, Linda, now reside in Salem.
BGSU Fireland’s 27th Commencement Ceremonies will begin at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, May 4, in the campus’ Cedar Point Center.