Alfred University News

Alumnus Terry Galanis Sr. ’40, ’19 H passes away

Alfred University alumnus Terry Galanis Sr., whose gifts to his alma mater included funding renovations to the McLane Center gymnasium and bonuses for University employees, passed away Thursday, June 25. He was 102.


Alfred University alumnus Terry Galanis Sr., whose gifts to his alma mater included funding renovations to the McLane Center gymnasium and bonuses for University employees, passed away Thursday, June 25. He was 102.

Terry Sr. earned a bachelor’s degree in ceramic engineering from Alfred University in 1940. In 1963, he founded Sealing Devices Inc., a manufacturer of gaskets and O-rings, in the garage of his home in the Buffalo suburb of Alden. Today, the company’s office, warehouse and manufacturing operations occupy 175,000 square feet in Lancaster, NY. With more than 200 employees, Sealing Devices is one of the most successful family-owned businesses in Western New York.

Terry Sr.’s son, Terry Galanis Jr., serves as Sealing Devices president and CEO and is a member of the Alfred University Board of Trustees.

The Galanis family has generously supported Alfred University over the years. From 2000-2013, the family and Sealing Devices sponsored the Galanis Awards for Excellence in Family Business. The awards program was Terry Sr.’s way of shining a spotlight on family businesses, which are so vital to the country’s economy, and Alfred University.

In 2006, the Galanises funded a full-time junior varsity coaching position for the Saxon football team that remains in place today. Another gift funded significant renovations to the gymnasium at McLane Center. Unveiled in 2014, the Galanis Family Arena featured a new court surface; new composite bleacher seating; and a state-of-the-art sound system. The Galanis family helped fund renovations to a classroom in the College of Business’s Olin Building used for distance learning initiatives.

The Galanises have been great supporters of Alfred’s annual Day of Caring/Giving, providing matching gifts totaling $400,000. The challenge gift they provided for this year’s Day of Caring, along with gifts from two other generous donors, helped the University raise more than $800,000 for the Alfred Fund.

In February of 2019, Terry Sr., made a $1 million gift to Alfred University, with a note to President Mark Zupan: "Use some of this to do something nice for your employees." That April, Zupan announced the University was awarding a one-time bonus to all full-time and part-time, regular non-bargaining unit employees hired before July 1, 2018.

Sealing Devices is one of three finalists in the Large Business category in the 2020 Buffalo Niagara Business Ethics Awards, sponsored by the Buffalo Niagara Business Ethics Association. Award winners are expected to be announced in early July.

Alfred University bestowed honorary doctorate degrees on the Galanises in the spring of 2019. Terry Sr., received his degree at a special ceremony in April at Sealing Devices and Terry Jr., was awarded his degree at the May Commencement ceremonies.