Staff members with more than 200 years combined service retire

by Cindy Long

Centre College News

As the 2021-22 academic year comes to a close Centre is proud to recognize the following staff who are retiring after years of dedicated service to the campus community.

Yvonne Morley retired on Sept. 30, 2021, after nearly three decades in the President’s Office. As the executive assistant to the president and assistant secretary of the board of trustees, she worked with four presidents —Michael Adams, Milton Reigelman, John Roush, and Milton Moreland. She received the annual Presidential Award for Excellence in 2020.

“Centre will always be in my heart,” she wrote in a message of thanks to the College’s senior staff. “While not an alum, being an employee for 28 years and now a ‘past parent’ [her son is McCallum Morley ’21], I treasure the deep connection I have to this place and its people.”

Dana Bart, an award-winning graphic designer for the Norton Center for the Arts, retired on Dec. 1, 2021, after more than 14 years at the College.

“Dana’s creativity has been so important to our successful messaging of events at the Norton Center and across campus,” said Norton Center Executive Director Steve Hoffman. “I think I speak for everyone when I say that her knowledge of graphic design and art, her dedication, and her sense of humor will be missed.” 

Glenda Beaven retired on Jan. 31, 2022 as executive administrative assistant in the human resources department after nearly 24 years at the College. Glenda received the Staff Recognition award in 2002, served on Staff Congress multiple terms.

“Glenda was a primary ‘behind-the-scenes’ player in many large HR initiatives over her tenure at the College,” says Meredith Bruner, human resources operations manager.

Don Taylor retired in April 2022 as manager of custodians after 41 years at the College. 

“Don has been an integral part of Centre College for nearly 42 years,” says Scott Messer, director of facilities management “Don also received the Horky award for his outstanding achievements in 1992. During his time here, he earned several promotions that led him to his final position as manager of custodial services.  

“We admire his many years of hard work, dedication, and commitment to the College,” Messer continues. “Over the years not only did Don’s work inspire us in facilities management but his impact has also been felt across the entire campus.”

Diane Johnson will retire as college editor on June 30 after 35 years at the College. She received a Centre Recognition Award in 2009 for her work with Tom Hardin ’63, editor of Our Standard Sure (2009), a 280-page history covering almost 200 years of the College.

Well known to countless alumni and students for her work as editor of Centrepiece magazine, Johnson is also recognized for her contributions in support of news, communications, admissions, as a student advisor for national and international fellowships, and as a College historian.

Centrepiece has made the College’s constituents especially eager to receive their magazine,” says Art Jester, former director of college relations. “Under Diane’s editorship, Centrepiece has reinforced for all who love it that Centre is a special College, blessed with a remarkable past and eager for an ever-greater future. 

Gary Bugg ’93 will retire in July as director of public safety after 35 years at the College. He received a Centre Recognition Award in 2001.

“As an officer, and then as the director of public safety, I feel as though I have done my part to make Centre a safer place and a healthier community for students to study and play, and for the wonderful faculty and staff to work and change lives,” Bugg says.

“Earning a degree from Centre and walking across the stage was one of the proudest moments of my life,” Bugg continues, “and receiving the Owsley Rochester Award made that experience even more meaningful.”

Jamey Gay will retire in July as head athletic trainer after 30 years at the College. Gay received a Centre Recognition Award in 2021 for his work with Centre’s COVID response. He, alongside staff members Kathe Andrews and Kathy Jones, received the award for their tireless efforts as contact tracers throughout the pandemic.

“Jamey Gay has been a passionate advocate for our Centre student-athletes for decades,” says Brad Fields, director of athletics. He has been on the sidelines during their great triumphs, as well as their gut-wrenching defeats, sometimes in the form of career-ending injuries. But no matter the high or low, he has helped our young people navigate it with grace and compassion. Jamey has worn numerous hats during this time at Centre, but no matter what the duty he has always had the welfare of our students front and center and he will be missed.”

Gay earned a bachelor’s degree in health and physical education at the University of Kentucky and a master’s in sports medicine at the University of Virginia. He is also the medical director for Kentucky’s Bluegrass State Games.

Bugg perhaps says it best for this amazing group of retiring staff: “[In] the wise words of Whitesnake, ‘I don’t know where I’m going, but I sure know where I’ve been.’”