7/9/2012 3:07:14 PM
Times Union: 'It's about achievement'
ALBANY — Those who look for clues as to why Alain Kaloyeros kept pushing his dream of a world-class nanotechnology college could look at the scars on his wrists.
The 56-year-old says his brushes with death in war-torn Lebanon shaped his life, bringing into focus the limited time one has to make his mark in the world.
Those desperate days helped form the personality of the charismatic physics professor who has mastered the art of dealing with politicians and corporate executives. Many people with whom he's worked say he is an extraordinary salesman, including those who consider him a master manipulator. Some like him. Some fear him. Most respect him. Few know him well.
"Experiences like this make you appreciate life," Kaloyeros said about his youth in the Middle East. "Makes you outgoing, wanting to achieve things in life — aggressive, for want of a better word."
The fast-growing College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering, now in yet another construction phase on the northwestern edge of the University at Albany campus, is considered the nation's premier research facility for nanotechnology, and Kaloyeros has built a power base unmatched in the SUNY system. With titles of senior vice president and chief executive officer of the sprawling complex, he is busy charting the course for greater expansion.
UAlbany President George Philip said Kaloyeros has moved the nanocollege into an economic development project with branches in Canandaigua, Utica and Halfmoon. At UAlbany alone, Kaloyeros manages $14 billion in clean rooms, test labs and research classrooms put together with public and private funding.