This bright and cheerful employee of the Office of Advancement has worked for the College for 30+ years will be retiring on June 30, 2019. Irene Barna originally started as a temp employee in July of 1978, selling textbooks at the College bookstore. At that time, she was raising four teenagers (2 boys, 2 girls) and managing a Middlebury household. In October of 1988, she started her continuous commitment to Middlebury College, ending her 31-year career at 700 Exchange Street – the Office of Advancement.
Dining Service (7.5 yrs.) to the President’s Office (18 yrs.), to her final
move to 700 Exchange Street – Office of Advancement (5 yrs.), Irene has worked in
various roles, filled many shoes, and assisted trustees, faculty, staff, and
countless visitors — whom she calls friends.
community will miss Irene for her friendly demeanor and work dedication,
welcoming all guests and staff to 700 Exchange Street the past five years and
Old Chapel for more than eighteen years.
For others, she will be missed by her wonderful storytelling and the ability
to recollect both College and the town’s history in great detail. A treasured gift!
wanted to share their recollections of working with Irene, and we are sharing a
“Irene is always willing to assist from
sorting mail, to ordering coffee, to helping hand address envelopes, and many
other duties. She does her job with grace and always a smile. She has a wealth of knowledge and always able
to strike up a conversation on many different topics. Irene will be missed by many.”
“With her long history at Middlebury and many interests
ranging from the cultivation of lilacs to railroad history to town planning,
Irene will surprise you with stories that will make you say, “I didn’t know
that!” She is also the only person I know who never even once complains about
the cold during the long Vermont winter. The front desk in the Office of
Advancement will seem very empty without her there.”
“Irene is deeply committed to
environmental stewardship and sustainable living. For decades, she has
been a town leader in modeling personal practices that reduce carbon
impact. Whether advocating for public transportation and bus ridership,
practicing reduce/reuse/recycle strategies, or reminding us that
individual actions DO matter, Irene inspires Middlebury colleagues and
neighbors to take personal responsibility for building a better world.”
If you wish to send your stories, memories, and best wishes to Irene before June 30, please forward to Stacie Marshall (firstname.lastname@example.org or 700 Exchange Street), and she will compile and present to Irene before retirement.