Chemeketa honors pending retirees
Thirty staff members earn thanks for years of dedication
BY B.F Kimball
Sent off with strawberry shortcake and well wishes, 30 Chemeketa staff retirees were honored on May 7 with a farewell gathering in the Bldg. 2 Student Center.
Among the honorees were Terry McLaughlin, a long time physical education instructor and volleyball coach; horticulture instructor Gail Gredler; Yamhill campus dean John Plett; mathematics instructor Nuri Alfaqueeh; public safety officer Larry Lord; Health services dean Kay Carnegie; and English instructor Marjorie Ferry.
Adorned with gold Mari Gras necklaces and lauded with praise, the honorees were recognized for their many years of service and the influence each has had on students, staff, and faculty on campus.
Guests were invited to sign memory books for each of the retirees.
McLaughlin said of his decision to retire, “It’s about time. It’s the right time. I feel good about it. [Chemeketa] was a good place to have taught.” The retiring faculty members were sent off with well-wishes from president Cheryl Roberts, CFO vice president Julie Huckestein, and Jim Eustrom, the executive dean of student development.
Roberts, imploring the retiring staff to not be strangers and to feel free to return, joked, “You may be the final group that actually does retire.” Eustrom took the stage to individually honor staff members, sharing personal remembrances about each.
The Multicultural Center’s Linda Ringo-Reyna said, “Chemeketa is a great place to work. You can see it with the longevity of these positions.” Eustrom said of the retirees, “Really, I hope they say yes to life. I hope they remember to pause and to breathe. I hope they enjoy it but ‘don’t use up all the fun,’ ” referring to a classic Saturday Night Live skit.
Sent off with flowers, memory books and the memories of their time served on campus, the fondness for the retiring staff was evident at the gathering. Huckestein also provided retirees with a few words of parting.
“I want to thank each and every one of the retired for their years of dedication to the college. Being a part of a community college is being part of the community. It’s what makes the environment special for the people who attend and for the people who work at the college.
“With the 30-plus retires, I’m sure the environment won’t the same. I wish them the best.”
Instructor Marjorie Ferry said that she was “both excited and apprehensive. … I’m going to miss the students and the classrooms.
“I look forward to traveling, gardening, and reading.”
Ferry, however, is easing into her retirement; she plans to teach a single course in the fall.
Retiring Staff: Shelley Brown Kristy Zielinski Laura Salchenberg Gene Moore, Nuri Alfaqueeh, Terry McLaughlin, Jean Harvey, Patty Mangers, Paul Guthrie, Rhonda Oakley, Nancy Godfrey, Linda Newman, Carol Ottaway, Steve Slemenda, Lorna TenEyck, Kay Carnegie, Louanne Whitton, Duncan Tucker, Dave Dyer, Rita Blaisdell, Larry Lord, Peggy Borjesson, Marjorie Ferry, John Plett, Kay Charapata, Tom McDonough, Gail Gredler, Tom Berntson, Pam Broadus, Mark Portmann.