College mourns Terry Miltner '02

Publication Date

Terry Miltner ’02, a Facilities staffer who took a night shift so that he could pursue his Union degree and, once finished, launched the College’s sustainability initiatives, passed away on March 21, 2020, after a battle with cancer. He was 69.

Terry joined the College in a daytime position as a painter but became night cleaning supervisor in 1995 so that he could take classes toward a degree in sociology. He proudly graduated with the Class of 2002.


Terry Miltner ’02

n 2006, he was promoted to assistant manager of cleaning services. In 2010, he moved into the new position of sustainability coordinator. In that role, he quickly developed a reputation for harnessing student enthusiasm for a number of programs that continue today including RecycleMania, a competition for College recycling programs. He was also instrumental in promoting energy reduction and study programs including the installation of wind turbines near College Park Hall.

Born in Niskayuna, he was a graduate of Guilderland High School who went on to serve in the U.S. Army during the Vietnam War. He received the National Defense Service Medal, the Bronze Star, the Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal and the Sharpshooter Award. A proud veteran, he participated in many of the College’s Veteran’s Day and Memorial Day ceremonies.

Terry was an active advocate for organ donation, having received a heart transplant in 2013 at Massachusetts General Hospital. Delta Delta Delta, the sorority of Terry’s daughter, Michelle ’13, organized a campus fundraiser to cover the family’s expenses during his stay in Boston.

Loren Rucinski, director of Facilities Services, said that Terry was a logical choice to coordinate the College’s sustainability initiatives. “Terry did a fine job creating an interest among students and staff in green efforts, starting with recycling and other projects including the national RecycleMania competition that we continue to be involved in today.”

The family’s obituary read, in part, “Quick to greet you with his charming smile, Terry was truly selfless. In today’s uncertain times, he would have been first to offer help to others. Terry will be deeply missed by all who were blessed and privileged to know him, but will also be well remembered as the hero that he was.”

Survivors include his wife, Karen; and daughters, Sarah ’03 and Michelle ’13.

A celebration of his life will be announced.

Memorial contributions may be made to Fisher House Foundation (an organization that has helped the Miltner and other military families during medical crises) P.O. Box 230, South Walpole, Mass. 02071, or