TGPortrait

Tom Golisano Biography


B. Thomas Golisano — entrepreneur, philanthropist, and civic leader — is the founder and chairman of the Board of Paychex, Inc., headquartered in Rochester, New York. With more than 12,000 employees and 100 office locations nationwide, Paychex is a leading national provider of payroll, human resource, and benefit outsourcing solutions for more than a half-million small and medium-sized businesses. Mr. Golisano served as Paychex’s president and chief executive officer from 1971, when he founded the company, until October 2004.

Mr. Golisano and Paychex have consistently been recognized by the business, financial and national media. Mr. Golisano was listed among the FORBES top 10 bosses in the U.S. for three consecutive years, beginning in 2002; the annual ranking is based on chief executives who provide the best balance between their compensation and shareholder return.

Mr. Golisano has demonstrated an ongoing dedication and commitment to a variety of civic issues and organizations. In 1985 he launched his first philanthropic endeavor by establishing the Golisano Foundation, which awards grants to organizations providing opportunities for those with intellectual disabilities. His personal philanthropic contributions to hospitals, educational institutions and other organizations have totaled more than $304 million. In recognition of his achievements and endeavors, Golisano has received numerous awards and holds honorary doctorate degrees from five different colleges and universities.

Mr. Golisano is a member of the board of directors of several private companies and institutions.

He is the former owner the Buffalo Sabres of the National Hockey League, which he purchased on March 14, 2003, demonstrating his commitment to Western New York and the region's economic climate. Mr. Golisano said that it was important to keep the team in Buffalo because it is an economic and community asset. Mr. Golisano sold the team in 2011 with the stipulation that the team remain in Western NY.

Born in Irondequoit, New York, Mr. Golisano graduated from Alfred State College in 1962 with a degree in general business management. He was presented an honorary doctorate of humane letters, at his alma mater's commencement ceremony, on May 17, 2009.

Mr. Golisano is married to Monica Seles, professional tennis player and member of the International Tennis Hall of Fame. He has two children and several grandchildren.