era has ended. After 74 years of combined and superb service
to the University, Randy and Susan Turpin recently retired.
Randy BS'61 started at the
U as a part-time janitor when he was a student at Granite High. His
fabled lifetime career began in parking services and concluded as associate
vice president for administrative services in charge of campus design,
planning, and plant operations.
Randy's deft leadership
touch is visible across the entire campus. Dozens of new buildings and
renovations, including construction of Rice-Eccles Stadium, came about
under his watchful care.
While Randy Turpin and his
excellent team were changing the face of the campus, Susan Turpin was
in the Park Building serving most effectively as administrative assistant
to the vice president for university relations (me). Susan started at
the U in the shops and utilities area, moved on to student affairs and
the liberal education program, and found her way to university relations.
Before retiring, she spent her last couple of years with Academic Outreach
and Continuing Education.
Susan's knowledge of the
campus and its personnel and budgets, and her understanding of the importance
of the University's mission resulted in her receiving the Lillian Ence
Award in 1998, the top campus honor bestowed on administrative assistants.
Susan and Randy met on campus
and, throughout their careers, drove to and from the U together, sharing
some (but not all) information. "Sometimes we knew things that
we just had to keep secret for awhile," says Randy.
But their mutual love for
the University is no secret to anyone who knows them. From gymnastics
meets and football and basketball games to Pioneer Theatre Company plays
and many other campus events, Randy and Susan are loyal Utes. It is
only fitting that the Board of Trustees has renamed the University Services
Building the V. Randall Turpin University Services Building, and has
bestowed upon him the honor of emeritus status.
Retired to their new home
in Heber City, Randy says he will keep busy in his shop, working on
his "street rod." And Susan says she is learning to be "laid
back" that is, she doesn't have to do all her housework
on Saturdays. Now she has time to travel with Randy and plans to volunteer
at Wasatch High.
Randy says he will always
remember the lesson learned from LaVell Edwards, his football coach
at Granite High, where Randy was the starting quarterback: "Leadership
means being part of a team. You have to count on and trust each other
and involve your teammates in decisions." Randy and Susan both
learned that lesson well, and the University benefited enormously from
their many years here.
Ted Capener BS'53
is host of KUED's "Civic Dialogue" and former vice president
of university relations.