Clerc Center Gives Dr. Robert R. Davila a Warm Retirement Send Off
In appreciation of Gallaudet University president Robert R. Davila's dedication and service to the Clerc Center at various times over the past 35 years, Clerc Center students, teachers, and staff surprised him with a warm retirement sendoff on Tuesday, November 17.
Under the guise of "showing him something downstairs," Ed Bosso, dean of the Clerc Center, led Davila from the Dean's Office in KDES to the main level, where two long lines of students and staff awaited the president. As Davila worked the line on both sides of the corridor, a sea of hands reached out to him for high fives and handshakes. The KDES community then gathered in the auditorium for a tribute honoring Davila's many years of service. Davila told the students, "This school is very special to me ... you know, I used to be the boss here when I was vice-president of Pre-College Programs. I remember when this building was brand sparkling new. You have wonderful teachers here ... I love to see how the lives of deaf people are changing and becoming more and more successful." The KDES students gave Davila a poster signed by all of them that Davila said he would frame and display in his home.
Following the KDES gathering, Davila was whisked away by MSSD Student Body Government officers Chad Willman and Martha Wolcott for tributes from MSSD students, teachers, and staff. Davila greeted each of the students as they entered MSSD's Theatre Malz for the assembly and told the audience, "There is no place in the world like Kendall Green."
The retirement celebration wrapped up with a reception in the Star Gallery amid posters created by MSSD students featuring a smiling Davila, still in business attire, in various tropical locales and against a background of famous buildings and landmarks at Gallaudet and in Washington, D.C.
Once again, we thank Dr. Davila for his service to deaf and hard of hearing students across the nation.