IN MEMORIAM: TUM Honorary Senator and University Donor Gallus Rehm
“I am grateful to TUM by conviction”
A FASCINATION FOR NEW DIRECTIONS
Gallus Rehm’s great master at TUM was Professor Hubert Rüsch, the then holder of the Chair of Concrete Structures. He was a passionate advocate of new ideas regarding research goals and teaching methods that would be useful for the training of young engineers and the reconstruction of the country. As a student, assistant lecturer and for fourteen years as a research assistant, his mentor entrusted Gallus Rehm with solving novel construction problems and engineering challenges.
BRAVING RISKY IDEAS
Throughout his life, Gallus Rehm retained his curiosity and fascination for Materials Science, as well as for practical engineering work. Courageously and against all odds, he ventured into new directions. His communication skills enabled him to convince industry experts even of risky solutions. The Obermeyer Engineering Office developed the trendsetting Karlsplatz Stachus traffic structure in the centre of Munich. Gallus Rehm’s contribution was a reinforcement that could be produced economically and placed safely. This helped to achieve the breakthrough of the cut-and-cover construction method used for the first time, i.e. the construction from top to bottom.
For some, Gallus Rehm’s daring measure is still debatable. Others regard it as an engineering masterpiece, for which he was awarded the Benemerenti Medal by Reinhard Cardinal Marx in 2019. “Of course I am delighted to receive this late recognition,” said Gallus Rehm back then. “However I did not hang the medal in my living room.”
STRONG COMMITMENT TO FELLOW HUMANS
Gallus Rehm was a man of action, not one to crave recognition and boast with his awards for his significant achievements. Just as his professional success was based on a fundamental fascination for his field, so was his volunteering and patronage commitment based on a deep conviction that he wanted to do something for his fellow humans. Despite a considerable workload, Gallus Rehm, having been driven out of Hungary himself during the turmoil of the war, spent decades working for reconciliation and international understanding as a member of the The Landsmannschaft der Deutschen aus Ungarn (Homeland Society of Germans from Hungary). He managed to achieve this without any political pressure thanks to his communication skills, one of many things he learnt from his mentor Hubert Rüsch at TUM.
It comes to no surprise that Gallus Rehm has been equally committed to his alma mater for years. “Fourteen years at TUM naturally create a bond and unity,” he stressed. “I still feel very much at home here and still have friendships with many colleagues.” When the non-profit TUM University Foundation was established in 2010 to support the best talents, advance socially relevant research topics and promote international competitiveness with today’s foundation capital of over 50 million euros, Gallus Rehm was one of the founding donors. As a private donor of TUM’s Deutschlandstipendien, he invested in the education of young people even further.
In 2018, he received the highest honour for deserving Alumni of TUM for his achievements and commitment: the appointment as Honorary Senator. “I have been an ardent and enthusiastic worker all my life,” said Gallus Rehm. “I almost regret having become so old that I can no longer work. But I’m carrying it with dignity – finally I have time to read and listen to music.”
Prof. Dr. Gallus Rehm
Diploma Civil Engineering 1951, Doctorate 1958
Gallus Rehm studied Civil Engineering at TUM from 1947 to 1951 and earned his doctorate with a scientific experimental investigation at TUM’s Materialprüfungsamt für das Bauwesen (Materials Testing Office for Civil Engineering). From 1968 to 1973, he was Head of the Chair for Building Materials and Reinforced Concrete Construction at the Technical University of Braunschweig, then of the Chair for Materials in Construction at the Technical University of Stuttgart, where he also held the position of director of the renowned materials testing institute, the Otto-Graf-Institute, from 1973 to 1990. Today, Gallus Rehm still occasionally visits the internationally recognized and active testing laboratory for concrete reinforcement steel, which he founded in Munich in 1965.
Throughout his life Gallus Rehm was also an active volunteer and patron. For decades he was an active member of The Landsmannschaft der Deutschen aus Ungarn (Homeland Society of Germans from Hungary), as its National Chairman, later Managing National Chairman. His alma mater received his support as a founding donor of the TUM University Foundation. In 2018, the then TUM President Prof. Dr. Wolfgang A. Herrmann awarded him the title of Honorary Senator. Since 1978, TUM has been honouring personalities who have rendered outstanding services to the future development of the university through many years of commitment with this title.
Gallus Rehm died in August 2020 at the age of 95.