George Morrell

George Morrell

A recent survey found that the average American  changes jobs at least seven times during his or her career.  But George Morrell wasn't average in any sense of the word.

He started working for Arizona State Teachers College as a student and, except for outstanding military service, never left his alma mater.

George, a member of the Class of 1941, was a loyal servant and supporter of Arizona State University until his death in February, 2008.  His long career as director of purchasing was a model of all that is efficient, honest, and worthy of emulation.

Of equal interest to alumni and retirees of the university was his role in creating today's ASU Retirees Association.  It was he who in 1991 first urged university vice presidents to provide funding and leadership for an organization dedicated to serving the needs of retirees and offering opportunities for volunteering on behalf of the university. His efforts at last bore fruit when Vice President Brent Brown agreed to assign Bob Ellis, then a recent retiree from the directorship of ASU's Channel 8 television station, to a part-time job as planner and organizer of what has become ASURA.  Ellis served as the association's first president and Morrell accepted the post of vice-president. George's service to ASURA is best remembered for his efforts as chair of the Membership Committee.  For years he labored to bring new members into the organization, and at last succeeded in reaching his goal of enrolling 1,000 retirees.

The 1941 Sahuaro yearbook of Arizona State Teachers College devoted a page to George's election as Campus King of the year 1940-41. The caption beneath his photograph aptly described the man who was beloved and respected by many thousands during his productive life.   It reads: "George . . . the quiet type . . . one of the hardest and most efficient workers on the campus . . . always there when he's needed."

Those of us who were privileged to know him through the years can say "amen" to that.

by Dean Smith
Prime Times, Summer 2008

George was interviewed by ASURA's Video History Project team on July 29, 2002. Both the full interview and a short clip from the interview are available for on-line viewing.