Hiram College will celebrate members of the Class of 2022 during a college-wide ceremony on Saturday, May 14 at 2 p.m. in Martin Field House, located in the College’s Les and Kathy Coleman Sports Complex. Robert W Turner ’72, chair of the Hiram College Board of Trustees and retired senior vice president for corporate relations at Union Pacific Corporation, will deliver the commencement address. 

Prior to his retirement in 2015, Turner served 15 years as senior vice president for corporate relations at Union Pacific Corporation, one of America’s leading transportation companies. Through this role, he was one of the top nine executives of the corporation, and he was responsible for internal and external communications, corporate advertising, brand management, public affairs, media relations, government affairs, and corporate philanthropy. Turner also led the creation and introduction of the company’s Building America company-wide rebranding, an extensive reorganization of the company’s external relations activities, and a refocusing of its philanthropic activities. He also served as president of the Union Pacific Foundation, and head of the Union Pacific Railroad Museum.

Before joining Union Pacific Corporation, Turner served as vice president of public affairs of Champion International Corporation, a paper and wood products company that was acquired by International Paper Company in June of 2000. There, he was responsible for corporate communications, public affairs, and government relations. 

Turner graduated from Hiram College in 1972 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in economics, and following his graduation, he served as assistant to then President Elmer Jagow for two years, as well as another three years as director of the Kennedy Center and of purchasing at Hiram College.  

“I am excited about this opportunity to honor the Class of 2022, which is graduating after one of the most tumultuous periods in recent history,” said David Haney, Ph.D., president of Hiram College. “I know they are proud of their accomplishments at Hiram and ready to move on to even greater things. As a highly successful Hiram alum who is still deeply engaged with the College, Bob Turner is an ideal person to send our graduates on their way.” 

Commencement day activities will begin in the Kennedy Center at 8:30 a.m. with an induction ceremony for students named to Phi Beta Kappa, the oldest honor society for the liberal arts and sciences in the United States. A pinning ceremony for graduating nursing students will be held at 9:30 a.m. in Bates Hall, followed by two brunch receptions in the Dining Hall at 10 a.m. and noon.  

Four guests per student will be permitted to attend the ceremony inside Martin Field House. Tickets will not be available on Commencement Day, so all graduates must register for tickets by Friday, April 29. Additional guests will be able to watch the ceremony via livestream on the video scoreboard located at the College’s Charles A. Henry Field. Seating will be available in the bleachers and on chairs around the track.  

The ceremony will also be live streamed on www.hiram.edu to provide additional access for those unable to attend in person. The commencement program booklet will be available in a digital format for those interested. 

Additional details regarding commencement and a detailed breakdown of the schedule can be found at www.hiram.edu/commencement.