Arthur W. Gielow, Jr.

March 1, 1947 – January 30, 2010

by Paul Krupinski

The planetarium community is truly saddened by the passing of a friend and colleague, Arthur W. Gielow, Jr., director of the Buffalo State College Whitworth Ferguson Planetarium, who died in Buffalo, New York on January 30, 2010. Art, who earned a M.S.Ed. in secondary education in the geosciences, joined the Buffalo State College community in 1970 as a technical assistant in the General Science Department. He became assistant director of the Ferguson Planetarium in 1980, associate director in 1982, and director in 1984.

He also served as an instructional support specialist from 1995 to 1998. Art fostered the participation of students in all aspects of the planetarium, and he assisted them in the creation and presentation of programs. He organized and oversaw many planetarium programs annually, with more than 8,000 visitors and students attending each year. Art also served as the adviser to the Buffalo State Astronomy Club and the Buffalo State Alumni Astronomy Club, and he was a generous contributor to many campus fundraisers and events.

In the Western New York community, Art served on the boards of the WNY Science Congress, Science Exploration Days, and the Museum Education Consortium of Buffalo. He was also an active member of the Geological Society of America. He taught courses and presented programs at the Buffalo Museum of Science and for the Office of Continuing and Community Education in the Kenmore-Town of Tonawanda School District. Art was very proud to serve his country and was a former quartermaster with the United States Navy from 1967 to 1973 and with the Naval Reserves from 1973 to 1997.

On a personal note, Art was one of the most kind and gentle individuals I’ve ever known on this good Earth. I will sincerely and truly miss the many times Art and I stood under the stars together on the rolling hills of the Southern Tier, here in Western New York. We’d gaze in sheer amazement, just wondering about the secrets and mysteries the heavens had to offer…those were indeed memorable times, with a very special person. May Art Gielow rest in peace among the beauty of the stars.