Today Siena College honors J. Spencer Standish. successful business and community leader, and friend of Siena College.
In 1999 when Siena College dedicated the J. Spencer and Patricia Standish Library, Mr. Standish told students and faculty to utilize the rich resources of the Standish Library to make the most of their teaching and learning experiences. He also urged them to use the knowledge gained to improve not only themselves but also their wider worlds of work, family, and community.
In 1998, Mr. Standish retired as Chairman of the Board of Albany International Corporation. He had joined the company in 1952, was named a Director in 1958, and held several executive positions culminating in being named Chairman in 1984. He is credited with being instrumental in the development of Albany International's standing as the world's largest producer of paper machine clothing and high performance industrial doors.
Mr. Standish has long been a supporter of Siena College and its mission, serving on the Board of Trustees from 1987 to 1996, and from 1998 to 2004. The Board of Trustees has recently appointed Mr. Standish Trustee Emeritus of Siena College. The generosity of Mr. Standish is known throughout the Capital Region and beyond. In 2003, the Community Foundation for the Capital Region received a 54.6 million gift, the largest in its history, from Mr. Standish. In 2002, Albany Medical Center announced the establishment of the J. Spencer Standish Endowed Chair in Neuroscience. In addition to Siena College, other beneficiaries include the University at Albany, Albany Academy for Girls, and Mr. Standish's alma mater, Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Mr. Standish has also given generously of his time, having played an active role with numerous nonprofit organizations including the United Way of Northeastern New York, University at Albany Foundation, and the American Red Cross of Northeastern New York.
Among his many honors is an Honorary Doctor of Textiles degree from the Philadelphia College of Textiles & Science, and a Good Patroon Award from the Albany Roundtable for contributions to charitable efforts. Mr. Standish was the recipient of the first Capital Region Business Hall of Fame Award.
Today Siena College recognizes J. Spencer Standish with the honorary degree, Doctor of Science. Mr. Standish serves as an example that it is possible to live both a successful professional life and a life of service to others.