Penn State Behrend honors LORD chairman emeritus

LORD Corp. and the Thomas Lord Charitable Trust have committed a $500,000 gift to name the Donald M. Alstadt Advanced Chemistry Lab in the Otto Behrend Science Building at Penn State Erie, The Behrend College. The naming honors the late chairman emeritus of LORD Corp.

Last fall, Penn State Behrend completed a $6.1 million project to create new, modern chemistry labs and support space to enhance the facility's learning and research environment.

"Don Alstadt is being honored for his passion for science, education and innovation," said Donald Birx, chancellor at Penn State Behrend. "He was known for his entrepreneurial spirit, leadership, and longstanding commitment to LORD, its employees and the Erie community."

The dedication ceremony on April 15 included remarks from Birx; Paul M. "Mickey" Pohl, a member of LORD's Board of Directors and a trustee of the Thomas Lord Charitable Trust; Judith Alstadt, Donald's wife; Tracy Halmi, senior lecturer in chemistry; and Chuck Yeung, interim director of Penn State Behrend's School of Science.

Alstadt is credited as the inventor of Chemlok adhesives, which became the foundation of LORD's successful global chemical business. More than 50 years after its invention, the Chemlok brand is recognized globally as the industry leader for rubber-to-metal bonding.

During his 60-year span at LORD, Alstadt received worldwide recognition for his expertise in rubber-to-metal adhesion, the physics and chemistry of surfaces, and solid state molecular structures. After accepting a position as a development engineer in 1943, Alstadt held various leadership roles in the company until he was promoted to chairman and CEO in 1982. He served in this position until 1991 when he joined the LORD Board of Directors as chairman emeritus.

Alstadt was a member of the Swedish Royal Academy of Science, the Royal Society of Chemistry in England, and the American Chemical Society. In 1981, Alstadt was awarded the Behrend Medallion, Penn State Behrend's highest honor. In 2007, LORD dedicated its Grandview campus in his honor.

Alstadt passed away on Feb. 19, 2007, at the age of 85. He is also survived by his daughter, Karen Alstadt-Baird.
 

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Last Updated April 18, 2011