$1.6M gift establishes YSU faculty position

YOUNGSTOWN — Ursuline graduate and Youngstown State University alumnus John “Jack” DePizzo and his wife, Nuggie, have donated $1.625 million to the university’s “We See Tomorrow” fundraising campaign.

The DePizzos, who owned and operated more than 30 senior care facilities across the region and who continue to develop and operate in southwest Florida, donated the money to establish an endowed faculty position in gerontology and to enhance their existing scholarship in the Williamson College of Business Administration.

The Jack and Nuggie DePizzo Chair in Gerontology will be a full professor position in the Department of Sociology, Anthropology and Gerontology in the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences at YSU, according to a news release from university spokesman Ron Cole. It is the university’s 11th endowed faculty chair or professorship.

“Our thanks to the DePizzos for this generous gift and for their continued, unwavering support of the YSU community,” YSU President Jim Tressel said. “Endowed faculty positions such as this allow the university to provide expert teaching and learning opportunities for our students and the community.”

The gift is part of the $100 million “We See Tomorrow” fundraising campaign — the largest in YSU history. The campaign is nearing the $90 million mark.

“I often say that when I needed a college education, YSU was there,” said DePizzo, founder and vice president of Jadco Enterprises Inc. “Now, I am here for YSU.”

DePizzo graduated from Ursuline High School before entering YSU, where he was a founding member of Sigma Pi social fraternity and a member of Alpha Tau Gamma honorary accounting fraternity. He graduated from YSU in 1971 with a bachelor’s degree in business administration.

Endowed chairs or professorships are positions that combine a traditional faculty post with enhancements funded from the interest on the principal of the gift to the university. Increasing the number of endowed faculty positions is among the priorities in the “We See Tomorrow” campaign.

In addition to establishing the endowed chair, $125,000 of the gift will be used to enhance the JAD Scholarship in the Williamson College of Business Administration. DePizzo established the scholarship in the 1990s.