August 13, 2021


The Graduate Center deeply mourns the passing of John Grzelewski, budget director of the Advanced Science Research Center (CUNY ASRC). He died on August 12, 2021, following a long illness.
Grzelewski joined the CUNY ASRC as its first budget director in October 2014, shortly after the 200,000 square-foot facility opened on The City College of New York campus in Harlem. He developed the CUNY ASRC’s short- and long-term financial plans and projections; tracked, analyzed, and reported on the center’s budget and spending of tax levy and non-tax levy funds; established and maintained core facility accounts, budgets, and rate development and validation processes; and managed two full-time staff members of the center’s business office.
“What I will really miss is having John stop by my office in the morning with a coffee in his hand and a smile on his face, ready to catch me up on everything going on in the business office, pick my brain, and offer his sage advice,” said Annette Gray, executive director of the CUNY ASRC and associate dean for the sciences at the Graduate Center. “John loved people (and coffee), and he had an infectious optimism about life.”
Grzelewski was highly qualified for the CUNY ASRC budget director role, having worked for MTA New York City Transit for 22 years, holding positions with increasing responsibility in the Office of Management and Budget. As the budget chief of bus business planning, he directed and provided oversight in the development, analysis, and reporting of the Department of Buses’ annual operating and reimbursable budgets. He oversaw the development and implementation of various financial models to assess productivity, plan and allocate costs, optimize maintenance practices, and support future fleet purchase decisions. He also oversaw the New York City Transit diesel fuel and energy budgets and provided analytic support for energy-efficiency projects.
Prior to joining the MTA, Grzelewski worked in the New York City Mayor’s Office of Management and Budget where he was involved in analyzing and forecasting requirements for the fringe benefit programs for city employees as well judgments and claims expenditures for New York City agencies.
He received a B.S. in Political Science and a Master of Science in Policy Analysis and Public Management from Stony Brook University.