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‘We are more than colleagues — we are a community’

Concordia’s long-service and retirement celebration honours 267 employees who reached career milestones
March 18, 2024

A crowd of people at an event in an interior

Concordia held a celebration in recognition of 267 employees who either retired or reached a long-service anniversary milestone in 2022. The honourees gathered at the Grey Nuns Building on January 25 to mark the occasion.

Concordia President Graham Carr, who spoke at the event, was also honoured this year for his 40 years of service to the institution. Carr shared that when he first started four decades ago, he had offices on both Loyola and Sir George Williams campuses, but neither of those buildings exist anymore — noting that many things indeed change in 40 years.

An older man with short, grey hair and glasses, wearing a suit and speaking at a podium. Concordia President Graham Carr celebrated 40 years at the university.

Prabir Sekhri, a recent Department of Music graduate, greeted the honourees with the a piano performance. Michael Di Grappa, vice-president of services and sustainability, Anne Whitelaw, provost and vice-president, academic, and Carolina Willsher, associate vice-president of human resources, also said a few words to recognize the contributions of the Concordia veterans.

A woman with long, red hair, wearing glasses and a black top, speaking at a podium. Tanya Poletti: “The spirit of collaboration, the shared commitment to excellence and the genuine care for one another and our students make Concordia an exceptional workplace.”

‘The heart of the university — the people’

The cocktail reception recognized Concordia staff and faculty who have been at the university for 20 or more years. Notably, this year there were four Concordians celebrating 50 years of service and four celebrating 55.

Concordia graduate Tanya Poletti, BComm 98, director of administration and services to students, has been working at the university for 25 years. She spoke on behalf of the honourees.

“People sometimes ask why I stayed here so long and what makes Concordia a great place to work. It’s not just the beautiful campus or the impressive facilities. It’s really the heart of the university — the people,” she said.

“The spirit of collaboration, the shared commitment to excellence and the genuine care for one another and our students make Concordia a unique and exceptional workplace. We are more than colleagues — we are a community.”

Poletti also thanked all the mentors who helped support the Concordians along the way.

“Their impact extends beyond the workplace — it influences the culture of our institution and shapes the experiences of future generations.”

Three older gentlemen in suit shirts and ties, smiling for the camera. Physics professors Calvin Kalman and Sushil Misra and Srikanta Swamy, research professor of electrical and computer engineering, celebrated 55 years of service.

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