Service Recognition Event
Congratulations to all employees who have reached their service milestone!
67th Annual Service Recognition Event 2023
WEDNESDAY, MAY 31, 2023
College of Veterinary Medicine - Schurman Hall Atrium 2nd Floor
- Doors open: 5:30 p.m.
- Remarks: 6:00 p.m.
This event is by invitation only. This year's event will be held in-person only. If you need to make changes to your RSVP please contact email@example.com
This year's celebration will be an open reception that will include nostalgia exhibits for guests to explore throughout the event. Invited guests are welcome to stay for as long as they'd like. There will be food, refreshments, music, and brief remarks by Lorin D. Warnick, Austin O. Hooey Dean of the College of Veterinary Medicine; Michael I. Kotlikoff, Provost; and Christine D. Lovely, Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer.
Nostalgia exhibits will include:
Digital photo albums around the space
Time Capsule videos in the lecture hall space - watch short videos about pop culture, global events, and popular movies/tv shows for each milestone year
Video messages from milestone recipients and colleagues from across campus
Music tributes for each milestone year
Photo booth to capture the moment!
To submit a video or photo visit the Call for Photos and Videos webpage
For those who do not currently have a parking pass, Daily Decision Parking Options are available. We recommend utilizing B Lot or zone 4108 per the Park Mobile metered map, for parking accommodations to this event.
For more information regarding parking lots that are free after 5:00pm Monday - Friday please click here
Handicap parking is available in lots closer to the building.
Directions to the Schurman Hall Atrium 2nd Floor
- Schurman Hall is located behind the animal hospital if you are entering campus from Dryden Road.
- If you are heading up or down Tower Road, Schurman Hall will be located on the bend of Tower Road.
- Once you've arrived at the building, please enter through the glass building entrance. Event staff will be there to welcome you and give further directions to the event space on the 2nd Floor. Elevators will be available for access to the 2nd floor.
Check out this year's milestone recipients!
To review the list of our fiscal year 2023 milestone recipients click here!
If you have any additional questions or wish to make changes to your RSVP, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org .
In case you missed it!
Watch the Service Recognition Event below from 2022
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[Mary] Good afternoon everyone and welcome to the 66th annual Service Recognition Awards.
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It's nice to see all of you.
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We're so happy that you're joining
us and it's nice to see so many of you here
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at Bailey Hall, but we also have people joining us through through online, and so hi everyone
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online. I'm not sure where to wave at you, it's great to see all of you and thank you all
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for coming. I'm going to be your MC tonight, I know most of you but not all of you. My name's
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Mary Opperman, I'd like to be among the first to congratulate you if you are celebrating
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a milestone anniversary, and to extend a warm welcome to your family friends and guests.
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Who is a guest here today? Thank you for coming, thank your guests.
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President Pollack and I would also like to welcome our many Deans and Vice Presidents
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and Vice Provosts and other university leaders who are joining us here tonight. So when we
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began planning this event in January we didn't know where we would be with COVID or what
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guidance might be in place. But we knew we wanted to do our best to gather again in person.
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So I challenged my team to reimagine the event to one that would work both in person and
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online. Recognizing that we didn't really know where we would be today. So I want to just
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acknowledge their creativity in getting us here. Last year we introduced, yes...
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last year we introduced video time capsules and interviews with our awardees and we got
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such positive feedback about that. Last year, you'll remember, was fully online and so we
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decided to keep those and you'll see them again today. In fact, that really makes up the
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bulk of our program here at Bailey. After we're done I hope you'll join us back out under
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the tent and you won't need a sweater so that's... or a rain jacket. If you were here this weekend
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you know both were really helpful. And after the program for a reception outside where
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we can mingle, we can tell stories, I have a bunch of them I bet you do too. We have some
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appetizers, we have desserts and share some laughs and stories about each other at Cornell.
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But first just a few housekeeping details, be aware of the emergency exits. Now this is
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my very favorite thing to do because one time when I was going to Qatar um... I cajoled
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a flight attendant to let me do the emergency. I did, now, I will tell you that the flight
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attendant was standing right next to me but I did it anyway and so I do believe that you
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can find emergency exits; there, there, and there.
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Restrooms are available downstairs and will be available during the reception as
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well. And while your masks are no longer required, we all of us have different reasons why we
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choose to use them. So please feel free to wear your mask. For everyone joining us online
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feel free to share congratulations in the
chat or on Zoom. So again I'm not quite sure
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where you are but thank you for coming and do chat away. And finally please enjoy yourselves.
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Please enjoy yourselves, enjoy the company of one another.
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Right, we're here to celebrate our colleagues for their milestones in their careers at Cornell.
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And now it is my pleasure to introduce our host, President Martha Pollack for a few remarks.
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[Martha] Hi everybody, those of you who I know, some of you were helping out at the graduation
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on Saturday, and sort of the excitement of the graduation on Saturday morning for me
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was finding a shoe on the path, on the floor that I got to return to someone at the ceremony.
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I was kind of hoping I would find one of your shoes but no such luck... no such luck. Like Mary, I
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do want to welcome all of the awardees and all of the guests and faculty that are here today,
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to celebrate and recognize the more than 200 members of the Cornell staff who are marking
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25 or more years of service to Cornell. And collectively, if you're kind of geeky like
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me and like numbers, you realize that that represents well over 5,000 years of Cornell
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experience and knowledge. Every single Service Award is a special occasion because frankly
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we would not be the world-class academic community that we are without the immense, and I mean
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immense, contributions of our staff. You are in every way, the backbone of this University.
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As I tell people, without our staff there would be no teaching, there would be no research,
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there would be no engagement, and there would be no residential life and there'd be no food
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and there'd be no paychecks and on and on... and no paychecks.
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Um... it has always been true that Cornell is what it is because of the staff who keep it running
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smoothly. But over the last couple of years as we've dealt with this pandemic that's been
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true on a completely new level. It's been a challenging time. And I speak personally and
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sincerely when I say that being a part of this community throughout these challenges
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has kept me hopeful and optimistic. Cornell is a place that is actively working to build
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a better future in ways that have a real impact. It's a place where we try to find solutions
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to the immensely complex challenges that faces a society and a planet. And all of you make
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that work possible, whatever your role here is. Every day as you do your work and as we
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recognize the achievements and contributions of so many of you, I hope you'll let me take
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one more moment to call out someone who is herself marking 25 years at Cornell this year,
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our Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer Mary Opperman. Who as I think all of
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you know, will step down after 25 years. After a quarter century this summer. Mary I know
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I speak for everyone here when I say that your time at Cornell has made our time at
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Cornell better and richer than it would have otherwise been. As you've led with care and
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compassion throughout the ups and downs of 25 years and especially through the immense
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Human Resources challenges that we faced since March of 2020. We are so grateful for everything
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you've done for this community and we hope that in your new role, she was uh... this past
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week the board made her Vice President Emeritus, approved by the Board of Trustees. We hope
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that in that role you will remain a part of Cornell University for many years to come.
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So thank you Mary and thank all of you.
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[Martha] You guys know Mary, the longer you clap the more embarrassed she gets it's quite fun to watch
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from this vantage point. Thank you Mary, thank all of you for everything that you do for
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Cornell. Congratulations on your long tenure here and let's stop listening to me and have some fun.
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[Mary] Thank you President Pollack, tonight we recognize how far we've come as individuals and as an
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institution over the past 45 years. We're going to remember some friends and families and
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colleagues that have undoubtedly shaped our experiences and we celebrate the myriad of
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career and life journeys that we've had with Cornell. And I'll just stop to say you know,
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this is a very hard place to leave and so
I want to thank you all very much for letting
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me be a colleague for this long. And I think like many people I came here never expecting
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to stay for the bulk of my career and it's
been a true privilege and honor to work for
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you, and alongside of you um... We've all had journeys that are enriched by the experiences
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that we've had, the challenges that we've met, the successes that we've achieved, and the
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memories we've created. I'm so grateful to all of you for your dedication and effort.
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It's been, as Martha said, an extraordinary two plus years, but even before that for many
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of us who have been here a long time we've... we've struggled through downturns and all
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sorts of interesting things together. And we just couldn't be more grateful for all of
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your hard work during those interesting times. You've shared more than 25 years or more of
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your life with Cornell and that's just extraordinary. And in fact um... your contributions as Cornellians
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make it possible to do the greatest good for our students, and they are the reason that
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we are all here. And as well as the work you do to support faculty in our local and greater
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communities, and one another. And so on behalf of myself, President Pollack, the university
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leadership, and all of those whom you've impacted over the years, whether you know you made a
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difference or not, to each of them thank you. Let's give all of our recipients a round of applause.
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Um... let's get started with
a celebration in the 90s, where we will begin by celebrating our 25 year of service recipients who started their careers sometime between
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1996 and 1997.
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[Patty] It has to be August when the students return to see all that activity to see the parents
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dropping the kids off, it used to bring tears to my eyes and that is without a doubt the
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best time is to see all those people starting out embarking on something that they cannot
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even predict what's going to happen. [Mary] My favorite time of year on campus I guess I would have
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to say the spring.
[Joanne] Spring, May... May is my absolute favorite time because the first week or and
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the second week of May are the perfect times of year. And everything is in bloom...
[Mary] ...the flowers
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start to come out the trees start to flower alongside Olin...
[Joanne] ...people are happy they're, they're
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excited it's coming to be graduation and there's this just great feeling.
[Mary] It's really a terrific
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time and you know summer's on its way.
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[Patty] I've got several favorite spots.
[Mary] Well there's a lot of parts of Campus that are really beautiful...
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[Patty] I love the views looking out over Libe Slope into the community it's absolutely beautiful.
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[Mary] Behind Olin, looking out at West Campus and the lake.
[Patty] When I can I do go out and walk at
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lunchtime. I love to walk around Beebe Lake.
[Mary] It's such a beautiful vista it's very relaxing,
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you can go to the Sesquicentennial Grove and... and sit and reflect.
[Patty] We have the Fall Creek
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Gorge and the Cascadilla Gorge that are right here, and I know that people go on vacations
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where they get on airplanes to travel to places as beautiful as those two spots alone and
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I get to walk out at lunchtime and take a take a little break.
[Joanne] I got myself into Olin
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Library... I don't know it was the first day I was on campus, the second day, I was on campus. Every
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moment thereafter I was just in love with the library. When I was a freshman they... they
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had a rule that undergraduates couldn't go into the stacks. I was not aware of that rule
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so I just sashayed into the stacks and no... nobody stopped me. And I couldn't believe the riches
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that there were there. Tremendously old books there on the shelf, you know, from the 1700s
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or the 1800s, just waiting to be checked out. I mean you could check these things out, I
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really felt like like you know who am I to
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[Mary] My fellow colleagues celebrating 25 years of service, please stand if you are able and
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if you're here in person we'd like to see
you stand if you are able and if you're online
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what the heck stand if you're able. Let's give them a round of applause.
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Thank you and once again congratulations to all of our 25-year recipients. Our next milestone
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group are those celebrating 30 years of service. These milestone recipients would have started
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their Cornell journey somewhere between 1991 and 1992. Let's take a look back.
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[Missy] I was very young when I came to Cornell fresh out of high school I really didn't have an
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impression of what Cornell was other than it was a very large employer with a lot of
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[Robin] My mom used to work, she's since retired, I remember as a little kid we were
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coming to see my mom at work driving up, you know, this road that was all bricks and you're
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just driving, driving up and you know... I'm a little kid and I'm like oh my goodness we're
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going all the way to the top of the mountain. To me it was like this huge place you know,
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um... I had really no idea at the time you know, what... what it was all about [Eduardo] I'd say in my early
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20s, when I did a lot of tutoring of high school students and one of the young men was accepted
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to Cornell was when I started to kind of really kind of understand it to be, you know, an Ivy
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League institution. When you think of Ivy League institutions you think of these like, you know,
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big Behemoth places of a very elite culture.
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[Eduardo] It is a different perspective once you work here for a great length of time and you see um... how much more we are able to contribute
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to our community and make it better. But also how much of an influence this university has
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on students and their lives as well as us as, as staff.
[Robin] There's just so many opportunities
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um, to be involved, to learn, to you know... grow in it, doesn't have to be at the...
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the top it can be any position you take. [Missy] The interest that being here part of the University
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does influence your life.
[Eduardo] When I was able to finally kind of... touch or be part of something
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that was related to Cornell uh... it was wonderful to have that experience be an experience by
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way of service to community, which is what Cooperative Extension is all about.
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[Missy] One that really had a my most heartfelt impact was um... back in October on my 40th anniversary
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I see flowers on my table in my office and so I quickly ran across the office to my supervisor
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and I said who are we getting flowers for, I said you know, do we need to sign something?
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You know, are they just... she goes, she says to me she says, it's for you and I said why, she
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says tomorrow's your 40th anniversary here at the university. I just felt so honored and
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humbled that they would take that opportunity to celebrate me that... that has really stayed
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with me. It is little things like that, that
can so change a person in a moment and that
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changed me in that moment. I, I that, that just was a moment that is going to stick with me forever.
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[Eduardo] I'd say one of the most memorable experiences was when uh... through one of our
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partnerships, I had partnered with the Liberty Partnership Program to host a, a youth summit.
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This woman, you know, just kind of ran over to me um... she was an African-American woman.
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And she wanted to know, 'are you with Cornell Cooperative Extension', and I said yes I am
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and she goes 'Cornell Cooperative Extension does this type of work?' What I could infer
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from what she was getting at was that she was really surprised that we were working
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with as diverse of a community as we were. By way of the Liberty Partnership Program.
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So it was really exciting to be able to say yes, this is the work that we do and yes, this
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is a community that matters to us.
[Robin] I don't know why this one comes back to me they had...
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they have a special place in my heart um, sorry... I'd have to meet with Dr. Robert Berman who used
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to be the um... the OVPR for Research and we had been working on this issue for a long
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time and everybody was frustrated, and I walk in I sit down at the table and he comes into
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the meeting and he sits down next to me and he goes 'well before we get started I just
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want to let you know that I'm tired and I'm a little grumpy' and I... you know, I'm like okay
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well we can, would you like to reschedule the meeting, we can we can do it another time and
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he just looked at me and he said 'Robin there's no better time' he goes 'because I'm grumpy every day'.
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He had that rough demeanor but he, I can tell you he was one of the most impressive people
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in my life. If I had a question or I had, I
mean he's the OVPR you don't just reach out
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to them and say 'hey I got this issue' but you did and he made things a lot better. When he
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said that to me that day and I didn't really know him that well at that point, it just... it
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comes back to me every day you know. Sorry that he lost him but he was a great person.
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And so when that's one of my favorite memories even though it's silly and it's kind of insignificant
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to me it was special.
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[Mary] Will our 30-year awardees please stand if you are able, so we can give you a round of
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applause including those and virtual stand-up we know you're standing.[Applause] Thank you...
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and once again congratulations to all our 30-year recipients. Next we're going to travel
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back to the late 80s to recognize our 35-year milestone recipients. That's right we're going
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back to the 80s, big hair it was the only time that having hair like mine was actually an
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advantage. You know I could just... could get bigger and bigger and everything... thought it
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was cool and shoulder pads right all those good things. So this group, our 35-year awardees
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began their careers between 1986 and 1987. Let's take a look.
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[George] Everybody I've worked with here at CIT, or Cornell Information Technology, is memorable
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to me because everybody helps me strive to be my best. They've always... they've always helped
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me and always made me a better person.
[Alison] This was in 1994, and this was Dean Phemister, Bob
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Phemister, and he's kind of a shy person. I had to have emergency surgery it was all very
00:27:23,790 --> 00:27:32,700
sudden, very scary. And I went to the hospital and I, of course everything went fine, but he
00:27:32,700 --> 00:27:37,230
came and visited me in the hospital. I mean, I had only been working at the college for
00:27:37,230 --> 00:27:42,179
three years even... as young as I was, as new as I was I thought, this... I don't think this
00:27:42,179 --> 00:27:47,649
happens anywhere, I think... I think Cornell is special. I just will never forget that. That
00:27:47,649 --> 00:27:53,400
was really important to me and I... I would never ever have thought that you know little assistant
00:27:53,400 --> 00:28:00,169
director would be visited by the dean in the hospital you know, pretty cool.
[Mary F.] Paul Dimmick
00:28:00,169 --> 00:28:08,850
worked for Cornell Cinema as our head projectionist from... let's see, from 1992 until 2020, when he
00:28:08,850 --> 00:28:16,940
retired. Just a... a wonderful, warm, unique, personality and he was always up for realizing any of
00:28:16,940 --> 00:28:22,429
these ideas I had, like showing movies on the Terrace or doing a movie screening in Sage
00:28:22,429 --> 00:28:28,010
Chapel. He was always game. We used to always joke that um, when... when one of us retired the
00:28:28,010 --> 00:28:33,539
other one would have to retire. And so even though I'm... I'm a couple years late I will
00:28:33,539 --> 00:28:44,399
retire this this summer and join Paul in retirement.
[George] Being able to uh, help make... help make
00:28:44,399 --> 00:28:50,890
Cornell University the best university it
can be. That's, that's my best achievement um...
00:28:50,890 --> 00:28:56,940
this is a great University and I, I just every day, everything that I do every day helps make
00:28:56,940 --> 00:29:02,820
Cornell University great and that's important.
[Mary] Keeping Cornell Cinema going for all of this
00:29:02,820 --> 00:29:10,899
time. Cornell Cinema was founded in 1970 and so we turned 50 years old in 2020. So many
00:29:10,899 --> 00:29:16,190
things have changed in the world of film exhibition and the fact that we're still here and um...
00:29:16,190 --> 00:29:21,640
still showing movies and still attracting
a lot of students and community members to
00:29:21,640 --> 00:29:26,390
our screenings. I feel really, really good about that. Cornell Cinema is actually one of the
00:29:26,390 --> 00:29:33,570
oldest or longest running campus film exhibition programs in the country and I hope we continue
00:29:33,570 --> 00:29:40,100
for many more years.
[Alison] You know being somewhere
for 30 years and a fundraiser at that, you
00:29:40,100 --> 00:29:46,070
really, at least I, wanted to make a difference in our students lives working with the student
00:29:46,070 --> 00:29:55,220
debt task force to um... to get the full buy-in on an idea that I had and it came to be. And
00:29:55,220 --> 00:30:02,450
I'm so excited because we are slowly moving the needle on... on student debt and reducing
00:30:02,450 --> 00:30:10,059
it. And it's called the RED Scholars Program. And RED stands for Reducing Educational Debt
00:30:10,059 --> 00:30:16,899
it takes tuition away for their third and
fourth year of... of their education and it's
00:30:16,899 --> 00:30:23,799
right now only available to two scholars and it's my goal to increase that so that more
00:30:23,799 --> 00:30:29,559
and more students will benefit. Just so they can be veterinarians without having to worry
00:30:29,559 --> 00:30:36,059
about all that goes into paying back loans. And it's just been really, really meaningful
00:30:36,059 --> 00:31:28,620
and... and I'm very proud of that.
00:31:28,620 --> 00:31:31,169
[Mary] Will our 35-year recipients please stand if you are
00:31:31,169 --> 00:31:51,000
able, here and virtually, so we can honor you. 35 years.
00:31:51,000 --> 00:31:55,720
Thank you and congratulations, and before we move on I just have to say that for those
00:31:55,720 --> 00:32:00,740
of you that don't know me, I'm a huge Red Sox fan and to this day when I watch that ball
00:32:00,740 --> 00:32:09,160
go through Bill Buckner's legs it makes me a little sick. But for the Mets fans in the
00:32:09,160 --> 00:32:15,070
audience, good for you. And besides that you're having a much better year this year than we
00:32:15,070 --> 00:32:22,630
are. So, our next milestone group will be 40 years of service. 40 years is no joke, it's
00:32:22,630 --> 00:32:28,350
a huge milestone and all of you who have been here 40 years have seen a lot of change; new
00:32:28,350 --> 00:32:34,279
buildings, changes in leadership, thousands and thousands of graduates passing through
00:32:34,279 --> 00:32:40,250
your offices. And you've contributed in both large and small ways to making that experience
00:32:40,250 --> 00:32:47,950
for our students. And that's the reason why we're here, such a good one. So this group would
00:32:47,950 --> 00:32:54,929
have begun their journey sometime between 1981 and 1982. Let's take a look back.
00:34:19,589 --> 00:34:25,129
[Beth] Well I would say um... of course the buildings and everything have changed. It's funny to
00:34:25,129 --> 00:34:31,550
me, back when my my father was a Cornell alum, and when he was still alive he used to visit
00:34:31,550 --> 00:34:35,190
from time to time. And every single time he would come, he would say nothing looks the
00:34:35,190 --> 00:34:41,359
same. And he would tell me they were fields where we now have the ag quad. It's just wild
00:34:41,359 --> 00:34:45,940
to think of how much the infrastructure has changed.
[George] There's a lot of buildings new buildings
00:34:45,940 --> 00:34:52,810
going up a lot, a lot of buildings in the, in the future coming up... it's uh everything it's
00:34:52,810 --> 00:34:57,317
constantly changing. There weren't as many buildings when I first started here.
00:34:57,317 --> 00:35:04,619
[Linda] The basic premise has not changed, it has stayed you
know... the every person, every study. Cornell
00:35:04,619 --> 00:35:12,560
is committed to being open to anyone who... who wishes to learn. I can see the different things
00:35:12,560 --> 00:35:19,140
that develop in the different programs that keep expanding, and making new offerings for
00:35:19,140 --> 00:35:26,119
students. The change has been has been good in that aspect. I don't think real the basics
00:35:26,119 --> 00:35:29,369
have really changed they've just grown and evolved.
00:35:29,369 --> 00:35:39,490
[Beth] I have grown in so many ways. I... I can't imagine that I would be the person that I am now if...
00:35:39,490 --> 00:35:44,450
if Cornell hadn't been such an important part of my life. Most people that I meet are passionate
00:35:44,450 --> 00:35:51,329
about what they do, and it doesn't matter what they do. They might be doing the wiring in
00:35:51,329 --> 00:35:57,940
the buildings or or they might be teaching physics that I can't possibly understand and
00:35:57,940 --> 00:36:04,830
everybody in between and and for the most part, they just know what they do and, and are
00:36:04,830 --> 00:36:09,670
passionate about being at Cornell. We're here because we care so much about what Cornell
00:36:09,670 --> 00:36:13,710
is trying to do in the world.
[George] I have realized that Cornell University is a great place to
00:36:13,710 --> 00:36:18,290
work in the area and I appreciate everything that Cornell University has done for me it's...
00:36:18,290 --> 00:36:24,710
I can't say anything better than that.
[Linda] I've really thrived at Cornell, every job that I've
00:36:24,710 --> 00:36:30,970
had has has offered me the autonomy that I like and has... has allowed me the opportunity
00:36:30,970 --> 00:36:35,026
to do my best job.
00:37:03,713 --> 00:37:13,851
[Mary] At this time I'd like to ask our 40-year awardees to stand if they are able, here and virtually, so we can honor you.
00:37:32,844 --> 00:37:38,950
[Mary] Just take a quick, kind of... pull away from our wonderful videos and just remind ourselves
00:37:38,950 --> 00:37:44,140
that after 40 years, we invite you every year to the Service Awards because you're pretty
00:37:44,140 --> 00:37:50,619
cool and pretty special. But we don't have little time capsules for you, so if you are
00:37:50,619 --> 00:37:57,980
here after the um... after 40 years but not quite at one of your milestones please stand if
00:37:57,980 --> 00:38:12,720
you're able let us thank you.
00:38:12,720 --> 00:38:18,290
Thank you all so much. Our final milestone group will be those celebrating 45 years of
00:38:18,290 --> 00:38:23,609
service that's almost a half a century of
connections and contributions to this amazing
00:38:23,609 --> 00:38:29,620
institution. Before we play the video, I want to acknowledge how remarkable your experiences
00:38:29,620 --> 00:38:35,490
and institutional knowledge are and how very important it is to this university. You've
00:38:35,490 --> 00:38:41,260
worked for seven university presidents, supported the development of new programs, departments,
00:38:41,260 --> 00:38:46,840
schools, and colleges. You've witnessed once in a lifetime events on our campus and in
00:38:46,840 --> 00:38:53,280
our communities, and you've welcomed literally thousands upon thousands of new staff, faculty,
00:38:53,280 --> 00:38:59,339
and students to the Cornell family. It's safe to say that you have helped build and shape
00:38:59,339 --> 00:39:06,020
the University's history, as well as its future. Those celebrating 45 years of service began
00:39:06,020 --> 00:39:13,310
their journey at Cornell sometime between 1976 and 1977. Let's see was what was happening
00:39:13,310 --> 00:39:21,670
in the world at that time.
00:40:42,510 --> 00:40:53,790
[Alison] I will always have these alumni in my life. The cycle of that student to an alum and then
00:40:53,790 --> 00:41:01,640
back to being a volunteer, that is incredibly powerful. It was such a privilege to be able
00:41:01,640 --> 00:41:09,160
to know them as students get to visit them where they are in their lives, in their careers.
00:41:09,160 --> 00:41:17,750
See how they're doing and then at a right moment say, can you come back and offer what
00:41:17,750 --> 00:41:25,700
you've learned to our students of today. [Dave] So, I think it was early 2000s Steve Hallas, who
00:41:25,700 --> 00:41:35,400
was this amazing programmer, he had decided that he wanted to move
00:41:35,400 --> 00:41:42,631
to the Adirondacks, where he was from, and live out there. I didn't want to lose him and, you
00:41:42,631 --> 00:41:46,660
know, it went through... we were able to hire him as a remote employee. And I think it really
00:41:46,660 --> 00:41:53,280
helped that he'd been here a few years so I like to think you know... maybe I had a little
00:41:53,280 --> 00:42:01,349
hand in helping the... that movement along, the work remotely movement.
[Mary] You know this is a big complex
00:42:01,349 --> 00:42:07,460
university. It's been around more than 150 years, I don't know that I've changed much
00:42:07,460 --> 00:42:14,440
of anything to be honest with you, but what I hope is that I've done my work in a way
00:42:14,440 --> 00:42:22,440
that the founders would be proud of, that I've lived the the equity of their founding mission.
00:42:22,440 --> 00:42:30,770
And maybe that I'm leaving here um... having done a few things that have made the place better.
00:42:34,172 --> 00:42:39,550
[Dave] I don't know if I have any words of wisdom but I... I would say when I first came to Cornell,
00:42:39,550 --> 00:42:48,740
I was amazed that, that all the different things that were available to do.
[Mary] Cornell's a big
00:42:48,740 --> 00:42:54,200
place. And that means there's lots and lots to do here.
[Alison] Just take advantage of everything
00:42:54,200 --> 00:43:01,795
Cornell has. Whether it is attending a concert or a hockey game or...
00:43:01,795 --> 00:43:10,559
[Dave] ...use the gyms. You could take classes. You could um... go see the botanical gardens. I would say to people just starting
00:43:10,559 --> 00:43:16,250
at Cornell uh... to really look at those things because you hear about them when you when
00:43:16,250 --> 00:43:23,920
you get here.
[Alison] I think I spent too many of my
first decade I'd say, working and very focused
00:43:23,920 --> 00:43:31,640
on just the job, rather than the university and what it offers.
[Mary] Be adventurous, ask questions.
00:43:31,640 --> 00:43:39,059
make this your place.
[Alison] Because it really does enrich you as a an employee to know what Cornell
00:43:39,059 --> 00:43:46,950
has to offer. When you experience those things yourself.
[Mary] Don't expect perfection from yourself,
00:43:46,950 --> 00:44:08,480
or from others. Expect challenges, remain resilient, and most of all have fun, enjoy.
00:44:13,730 --> 00:44:18,720
Will our 45-year recipients please stand if they are able, so we can give you a round of
00:44:18,720 --> 00:44:26,160
applause. I'm not sure we have any in the audience today, or if they are they're just sitting...
00:44:37,770 --> 00:44:42,480
[Mary] So as we come to a close I want to share my appreciation for those behind the scenes. These
00:44:42,480 --> 00:44:48,450
things never happen without a whole lot of people, you know... like ducks right, paddling
00:44:48,450 --> 00:44:55,589
away under the water. Um... so let me start by thanking the CIT event team for live streaming
00:44:55,589 --> 00:45:00,290
this evening's program. We're grateful for your help in providing an engaging program
00:45:00,290 --> 00:45:12,050
to our recipients and guests online. CIT folks, thank you very much.
00:45:12,050 --> 00:45:17,710
Thank you also to our wonderful Cornell catering and facility staffs who have helped make this
00:45:17,710 --> 00:45:23,380
event possible. This has been a busy, busy time for them. They have been just running from
00:45:23,380 --> 00:45:36,260
event to event for days and days, so thank you to catering and thank you to facilities.
00:45:36,260 --> 00:45:42,040
And finally thank you to the recognition team, and I just want to call out a couple... Ashley...
00:45:42,040 --> 00:45:53,680
Miller Ashley where are you hiding, stand up. Oh, there you are.
00:45:53,680 --> 00:46:00,880
Ashley does all of the planning and the event thinking and all of that wonderful stuff together
00:46:00,880 --> 00:46:07,780
with her colleague Ashley Fazio, because apparently we hire people in group names and so Ashley
00:46:07,780 --> 00:46:16,270
and Ashley thank you. But I want to take one second Jerry Deis, Jerry wave your hand okay.
00:46:16,270 --> 00:46:28,129
So Jerry did all of these time capsules yeah a lot of work putting these on so thank you so much Jerry.
00:46:32,109 --> 00:46:36,700
So we ask everyone to drop your lanyards in the baskets in the plaza before you leave
00:46:36,700 --> 00:46:41,360
so we can reuse them in the future awardees. Please be sure to take your name tag and your
00:46:41,360 --> 00:46:52,500
PIN with you and um... I'm almost done I promise, I'm almost done uh... hello...
00:46:56,420 --> 00:47:04,150
Okay, there you go um... I just want to say this is my actually my last event I believe before
00:47:04,150 --> 00:47:11,099
um... I move on and it's um... very bittersweet but I just want to say that I couldn't be
00:47:11,099 --> 00:47:18,420
prouder to be a colleague of all of yours, this is an incredible place it has a sort
00:47:18,420 --> 00:47:22,730
of Hoover-sucking ability, to suck you in and you stay longer than you thought you were
00:47:22,730 --> 00:47:29,690
going to. And for some of that you heard, it's the beautiful vistas, it's the amazing students,
00:47:29,690 --> 00:47:36,931
it's our faculty colleagues, but for me it
was mostly all of you. Being able to be in
00:47:36,931 --> 00:47:41,160
this role and serve all of you has just meant the world to me so thank you for letting me
00:47:41,160 --> 00:47:44,650
do it for so long.
00:47:50,320 --> 00:47:56,960
Once again thank you everyone who joined us this evening in person and online, and in person
00:47:56,960 --> 00:48:04,490
guests can make their way right outside. We're not done yet, we... there'll be refreshments, appetizers,
00:48:04,490 --> 00:48:12,290
some hot stations and a dessert bar. So please don't go we've got all that food, please come
00:48:12,290 --> 00:48:18,730
eat with us and thank you all very much for coming.
[Gary] Okay so Mary we forgot one thing, and
00:48:18,730 --> 00:48:23,890
I'm sorry to interrupt, my name is Gary Stewart I work in Community Relations at Day Hall,
00:48:23,890 --> 00:48:28,730
which way, that way?
[Mary] I have no idea.
[Gary] Okay before uh... before I forget there's
00:48:28,730 --> 00:48:33,619
also going to be some audience participation along the way so stay tuned. As president Pollock
00:48:33,619 --> 00:48:38,190
noted, Mary's reached a milestone this year; 25 years of Cornell service and congratulations
00:48:38,190 --> 00:48:45,150
Mary, and we thank you. Mary Opperman has been the best kind of colleague and leader. Always
00:48:45,150 --> 00:48:50,160
present and caring, while keeping a sense of humor about most stuff through thick and thin.
00:48:50,160 --> 00:48:55,790
Which isn't always easy at Cornell. As you know Mary has worked with thousands of staff
00:48:55,790 --> 00:49:02,020
members over 25 years, and treated us all as individuals with our own hopes and challenges
00:49:02,020 --> 00:49:08,119
and potentials, versus just faceless cogs in a big machine. So Mary, on behalf of many
00:49:08,119 --> 00:49:16,299
here today, I thank you for that and for being a real person and unrelated an Upstater.
00:49:16,299 --> 00:49:20,690
if you are a native or a long time resident of Upstate New York, or just moved here last
00:49:20,690 --> 00:49:27,410
week give me an 'Upstater' on three. One, two, three. 'Upstaters'
00:49:27,410 --> 00:49:35,829
And if anyone can spell the name of my hometown Canandaigua congratulations. Mary
00:49:35,829 --> 00:49:39,980
your work has been impressive to watch. Many of us have learned learned from your leadership.
00:49:39,980 --> 00:49:45,160
Regarding community relations there's never been anyone at Cornell be it a vice president
00:49:45,160 --> 00:49:50,220
or a schlub like me who has done so much for the greater Ithaca community including board
00:49:50,220 --> 00:49:56,239
work for many, many nonprofits that have benefited area residents of every age and demographic.
00:49:56,239 --> 00:50:00,530
Is a trustee at the college for overseeing important initiatives like the Center for
00:50:00,530 --> 00:50:05,891
Regional Economic Advancement, which includes REV Ithaca Startup Works in downtown. So Mary,
00:50:05,891 --> 00:50:12,599
on behalf of many both on, off campus thank you. And finally for our last audience participation
00:50:12,599 --> 00:50:20,299
exercise I would ask everyone to join me with gusto on three with a 'Viva la Mary'. One, two, three.
00:50:31,200 --> 00:50:37,190
So thanks again Mary to your family and event planners and congratulations colleagues and
00:50:37,190 --> 00:50:42,349
we'd also like to introduce some special guests at this point, if they could come out now please...
00:50:42,349 --> 00:50:51,250
I think you might know some of these folks.
00:50:54,940 --> 00:51:07,730
These are some nice family members of Mary.
00:51:30,236 --> 00:51:32,920
I've never known you to be weepy
before this is like a first time thing so...
00:51:44,996 --> 00:51:50,145
[Mary] So, so let me just these are my grandsons this is Elijah.
00:51:56,541 --> 00:52:03,641
This is my daughter Emily and her husband Derek. And my son William and his wife
00:52:03,641 --> 00:52:12,000
Hillary. And of course my husband who has the patience of a saint.
00:52:12,000 --> 00:52:17,250
thank you all so much.
[Gary] All right we're going outside thank you very much
00:52:17,250 --> 00:52:20,250
[Mary] Go get food, go get food.