Dora L. Bir, a 40-year UofL employee honored at the 2014 Staff Recognition Luncheon, went to make a bank deposit one day and got hit by a car—then returned promptly to work. Another 40-year honoree, Alice Radmacher, was shocked one day during the ‘70s when a streaking student being chased by police burst into the Registrar’s office begging for clothes to put on.

Those were just some of the funny and touching stories relayed during the luncheon Sept. 12 at the Brown and Williamson Club at Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium.

The luncheon honored a total of 347 UofL employees with a combined 6,475 years of service. It was held in two sessions—Aug. 29 and Sept. 12—to accommodate all the honorees and their guests.

“We’re on an amazing trajectory here at the University of Louisville, and it would not happen if not for you,” President James Ramsey said at the Sept. 12 luncheon.

Ramsey said the luncheon is one of his favorite university events, commenting that his first Staff Recognition Luncheon was in 2002, when he was interim president. When it was suggested he did not have to attend that day due to a flooding emergency at his home, Ramsey said he refused to let someone substitute for him.

“I was interim and I thought it would be my only chance to say, ‘Thank You,’” he said.

The honorees at the 32nd annual event were given the Red Carpet treatment with rousing music from the University of Louisville Pep Band, which played as each honoree walked into the room. All honorees received a plaque commemorating their years of service.

Employees who have worked at the university for 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, 35, 40 and 45 years were recognized. Those being honored for Distinguished Service of 40 and 45 years were treated to reserved parking and special tributes.

The Distinguished Service honorees are:

45 Years: Clarence Johnson, HSC Administration; Betsy Jones, IT Design and Printing Services.

40 Years: Dora L. Bir, Med-Dept. Administration; Jerry Caswell, Belknap Administration; Sandy von Hoven, Speed Office of Academic Affairs; Karen R. Howe, Office of the Provost; Deborah S. Krause, Surgery; Jo Ann Mattingly, Dental-Clinic Support; Jody Jolly Morkin, ED-Education Advising Center; Alice Radmacher, IT Technology Support Services; Katherine E. Tronzo, VPA-Support Services; Barbara Whitener, LIB-Reference; Ada Gray Willis, Belknap Administration; Rebecca B. Wimberg, Law Administration; Doreen Wood, Parking Administration.

Janet Cappiello covers student success for the Office of Communications and Marketing. She has more than 30 years’ experience in journalism, including working for The Associated Press and magazines such as Vegetarian Times and Sustainability: The Journal of Record. She has been at UofL since 2014.