At the annual Multnomah County Years of Service ceremony, 116 employees were recognized for their service on Dec. 9.
A packed room of colleagues, family and friends celebrated employees from across all departments.
County Commissioners read brief biographies of five county employees, who have served between 15 to 45 years.
When librarian Janet Irwin stood to be recognized for her 45 years of service, she received a standing ovation from the crowd.
“Some days it feels like it hasn’t been that long, and other days I think maybe it’s been long enough, but I don’t think so yet,” said Irwin, who started her career with the library in 1970. “I like the people I work with; I like the public.”
Her milestone has led her to seriously consider retirement, she said with a smile.
Employees who served more than 15 years were awarded with a certificate of recognition, along with a handshake or hug from the board. Together, employees represented over 2315 years of service.
“What an honor it is to be here with all of you this morning,” said Commissioner Diane McKeel. “This is absolutely one of the most fun things we get to do as county commissioners.”
Carl Stewart celebrated 25 years of service as the senior systems administrator for the Department of County Assets. At just 18 years-old, Stewart started his career with the county as a warehouse worker.
“I was a kid, and I wasn’t sure if I was going to turn the county into a career,” said Stewart. “The county hung on as a good place to work, and now I’m really glad. I like the impact I’ve had and that’s what’s meant the most.”
Among those honored include: