Bill Reed, Director of University Events, will retire this summer after years of service to his alma mater.
Bill is rooted on the Bluff. Rooted. Hooked. A fixture. From the simple beginning of coming to UP for college, and then after the usual it-seemed-like-no-time-at-all-flash, graduated in 1972 with a B.A. in Education. And teach he did, serving 9 years in local Catholic elementary schools, then as Director for Camp Howard/CYO 1981-84.
He came home as Executive Director of the Alumni Association in 1985. He’s still here 33 years later, changing job titles becoming the Director of Special Events (now University Events) in 1990.
As Events Director, Bill has had a hand in seemingly every internal and external campus event / happening / celebration / jubilation during the past three decades, utilizing every building and space on campus at one time or another. And still teaching in the UP way. Welcoming, helping, easing, and always smiling. He cannot stay in the office. With his signature white shirt and UP lanyard around his neck, Bill is ever crisscrossing campus, hoofing it with a smile of greeting for all those he encounters along the path. Bill’s hospitality, professionalism, and genuine smile conceal the ease with which he manages events to achieve operational specifications and program success. His calm generates calm, guiding events large and small — from visiting dignitaries and speakers from around the world, to academic scholars and conferences, athletes and athletic contests, commencements (high school through college) as well as behind-the-scenes support and advice and back-up double-checking for student sponsored events from Welcome Weekend to Weekend on the Bluff.
Theological handbooks mention that God is ubiquitous in power and ever unseen. We sometimes catch a glimpse of William O. Reed, III, BA ’72. And it has been a pleasure. And he will be missed. No one deserves retirement, the commendation of a job-well-done, and our blessings and gratitude in quite the same way as this hidden worker and indispensable friend.
Thought experiment: If an activity tracker / pedometer recommends 10,000 daily steps; calculating Bill’s average at 25,000 steps per day (conservatively); then the total is 255,500,000 footsteps accumulated these 28 years as campus host!