The Massry Center for Business

What’s in a name? Everything. Athletics now has the Tom & Mary Casey Stadium and the SEFCU arena (the latter facilitated by SEFCU president and CEO, School of Business alumnus Michael Castellana ’84, ‘92). The College of Arts and Sciences has the Boor Sculpture Studio. The School of Public Health named the Edward S. and Frances Gildea George Education Center in 1997 and the Massry Conference Center 10 years later. Now, the School of Business has a named building: the Massry Center for Business.

The Massry Family

In December 2014, the business-savvy Massry family (profiled in the spring 2015 issue of this magazine) made a gift of $5.25 million to the university and the School of Business. On September 17, the building was named in honor of the family and their long-standing support of the university. The Massrys boast a robust history of support for the University at Albany, having donated gifts totaling more than $6.2 million.

“As successful entrepreneurs who are dedicated to improving the community in which they live, the Massrys are shining examples for all of our students,” said School of Business Dean Donald Siegel. “I am delighted that their legacy will live on through the naming of the Massry Center for Business.”

University at Albany President Robert J. Jones said, “We are honored that the Massrys have chosen UAlbany as the recipient of their largest gift to date to any single institution. It means they have endorsed the direction in which we are going, and I could not be more proud of that endorsement. I know they are very careful to make investments that will have a broad impact – and I believe we earned their investment by showing the right kind of impact on our students, our faculty and the Capital Region.”

The Gift in Action

The Massry family has done more than name a building. Through their generosity, they are contributing to the life of the university. Their gift ensures that the new School of Business building remains a state-of-the-art resource. It will also fund the Massry Community Fellows Program, the Massry Lecture Series, conferences, and visiting faculty to enrich the academic experience of School of Business students.

The funds were immediately put to use. This spring, the Massry Lecture Series brought to campus Benjamin Lawsky, who at the time served as New York’s Superintendent of the Department of Financial Services. This summer, two students and two nonprofit organizations benefited from the Massry Community Fellows Program. (Pictured on our cover are Massry fellows Ethan Schek ’16 and Autumn Henry ’16. Read about them on Page 8.)

The Unveiling

Many dignitaries were on hand for the event announcing the building naming, including Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan, who proclaimed Massry Family Day in the city of Albany. She said, “With this gift, they have made one of the top-ranked business schools in the nation significantly stronger, which cannot help but make our city stronger too.”

University at Albany Foundation President George Hearst was also on hand for the celebration. He said, “I firmly believe this gift will transform the landscape of Albany and the Capital Region community in ways that will shape our future business leaders.”

Two special moments came at the end of the program, one from a student and another from the Massry patriarch. Najwa Zarook ’15, ’16 said, ”As a UAlbany student who has thrived on opportunities created by the likes of the Massry family, I feel as though they are personally ensuring my ability to reach my fullest potential, and for that I am grateful.”

When Morris Massry joined his son Norman at the podium, he said, “As the building was going up, I always thought maybe someday it would be named after the Massry family, and sure enough it is.”

After the drape concealing the sign was removed, purple and gold balloons were released and the School of Business Building had a name: The Massry Center for Business.

Dignitaries at the Press Conference Naming the Massry Center

Front row, left to right: University at Albany President Robert J. Jones, Dr. Lynn Hassan Jones, Albany Mayor Kathy M. Sheehan, University at Albany Foundation President George R. Hearst III, former University at Alba-ny President George M. Philip and School of Business Dean Donald S. Siegel

Massry Family

From left to right: Murray Massry, Mallory Baringer, Norman Massry, Micki Massry, Esther Massry, Morris Massry, Julie Massry Knox, James Knox

School of Business Dean Donald S. Siegel, I. Norman Massry, principal in Massry Realty Partners and Robert W. Lazar ’77
School of Business Dean Donald S. Siegel, I. Norman Massry, principal in Massry Realty Partners and Robert W. Lazar ’77, chair of the UAlbany School of Business Advisory Council
Father and son, Morris and Norman Massry
Father and son, Morris and Norman Massry
Naming Plaque