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Employee Profiles- Jan Feb 2009

Sheryl Hornback, Marvin Hirsh and Carmen Banks
      Sheryl Hornback, Dr. Marvin Hirsh and Carmen Banks
To Dr. Marvin Hirsh, formerly associate professor in the Department of Restorative Sciences, retirement is all about opportunities. 

Hirsh officially retired Jan. 15 after teaching for 21 years at HSC-Baylor College of Dentistry. When asked about his plans for retirement, he immediately responded with a full typed page of ideas as varied as the day is long.

He will sleep late;  i.e., 6 a.m. instead of his usual 4:30 a.m. He plans to volunteer at the Frisco Public Library at least three half-days a week with hopes of providing the children's story hour at some point.  He wants to use his undergraduate degree in chemistry by doing some cooking. In addition to his haiku portfolio, he will try his hand at writing a short story or two, although he feels he may have to take some creative writing classes in order to do that well.

"When I was the editor of the Dallas County Dental Society newsletter, I enjoyed writing the editorials; it gave me a chance to share some thoughts and to sound off when I felt the need," says Hirsh.

Hirsh's love of music also will receive increased attention. He recently dusted off his violin and has been playing a few ditties for his grandsons. His colleague and friend, Dr. Tom McKinney, associate professor in restorative sciences, suggested to him on more than one occasion that when his violin practicing gets to a certain point he should give a small recital at the college.ode to Dr. Hirsh

"Of course his response was to laugh, but I was serious," says McKinney. "I thought that it might give him some incentive to get really serious about getting his playing skills back. One of the things that brought us together as friends is our mutual love of classical music, and we shared many stories and CDs over the years."

A full schedule in retirement should not be a surprise to anyone who knows Hirsh. His employment days at HSC-BCD have been filled with teaching and other activities that tickled his fancy. He wrote scripts for many instructional videotapes for lab and clinic courses, eventually co-authoring programs with all full-time faculty members in what was known then as the operative dentistry department. He released his inner thespian and can be seen in a few safety training videos.

Others know Hirsh from his work with the Celebrating Diversity Workshops. "His smooth voice, calm demeanor and ability to interact with people from all ages and walks of life were perfect for the workshops," says Sheryl Hornback, education specialist in the Office of Student Development.

Aglae McCoy, Gracie Perez, Dr. Marvin Hirsh
 Aglae McCoy, Gracie Perez and Dr. Marvin Hirsh
"I have had the honor of working with Marvin on varied projects for most of his 21 years at the college," says Hornback. "One of my favorite diversity workshop leader partners, he shared numerous pertinent and even humorous tales from his practice to emphasize the application of demonstrated techniques while entertaining those who attended. Known for his honesty, integrity and good sense, he was in demand to assist students, faculty, staff and administrators on many occasions. I consider him a respected colleague and a friend."

Hirsh comments, "I have so many fond memories of BCD that it is difficult to choose one. My work with the diversity program was a joy. My work with the Admissions Committee was great; interviewing applicants was a challenge, one that I really enjoyed."

Referring to the group of friends that Hirsh has regularly lunched with each day, McKinney added, "This group is very diverse and, as would be expected, the conversation is as diverse as the people. More than once, Marvin said that the lunch discussions are one of the things he will miss most about his retirement. I suggested to him that he e-mail the group each morning with a topic for the group to discuss at lunch. Of course he laughed but, once again, I was serious.

"I know that many people will miss him here, but... I can understand how excited he is about having time for his many other interests," says McKinney.


Carl "Peewee" Williams retires

Charlotte and Peewee Williams
                 Charlotte and Peewee Williams

Carl "Peewee" Williams is as much a part of Texas A&M Health Science Center Baylor College of Dentistry as the halls we navigate each day.

After 34 years on the job as a technician in the facilities services department, Williams has knocked down, moved and painted more walls than he could count. In fact, painting is probably how most faculty, students and staff members know him; always at work with a paintbrush in hand, a quiet demeanor and a smile on his face for whomever he encounters.

"Retiree" is the newest description for Williams, who left the employment ranks on Jan. 15. His plans for the future include, first and foremost, more time on the links. He has been playing golf for the past 20 years and is looking forward to having more time in retirement to indulge in his favorite hobby.cake with golf motif

He also plans to spend more time reading and traveling. Williams' initial destinations include Las Vegas, taking his grandchildren to the Grand Canyon and seeing England with his wife.

"Of course, I have a year's worth of "honey-do's" to finish for my wife before we start traveling," he says.

When asked for his most vivid memories from the past 34 years, Williams quickly mentions the devastating flood at the college in May 1995. The day-to-day interactions with employees, however, have made the biggest impression.

  Peewee, Gwyn Sullivan and Ray Williams

"The best part of my time at BCD is how much fun it has been working with all the folks at the college," he says.

Dale Christensen, executive director of facilities services and planning, says, "Peewee is a very driven, hard working individual. Once he had taken ownership of a project I could almost forget about it, knowing that it would be finished on time, on budget, and with impeccable quality.

"I am very happy for Peewee and his retirement, but he and his contribution will be sorely missed," Christensen says.