Today we are both sad and joyful to celebrate the retirement of longtime bank employee Kathy Caudill. Kathy came to work at the bank in June 1966 and has worked her way up from bookkeeping to be the bank’s Chief Auditor.
When Kathy started at the bank, a gallon of gas cost .32 cents, the Beach Boys were singing “Good Vibrations” and the mini skirt was all the rage. The bank was 99 years young and had only about a dozen employees in the original McArthur location. “I can still remember what I wore that day,” Caudill said of the day she came in to ask Bank President J.G. Will for a job. “It was a dress I made with pink and coral flowers. And I wore matching coral colored shoes,” she said.
That was the first and only interview outfit for Kathy as she would stay with the bank for nearly 48 years.
She has seen many changes in technology, society’s expectation of work attire and the size of the bank. “There were only ten or twelve of us here at the time. We really were one big happy family,” she said. “That was a time when women wore hose, skirts and no pants and if you weren’t dressed properly you were sent home to change,” she explained.
Kathy’s first job with the bank was in bookkeeping. “That was when bookkeeping was really bookkeeping. We used lots of pencils. And we were excited when we got one of these,” she said, pointing to an electronic calculator which replaced old fashioned adding machines.
Over the years, Kathy has done nearly every bank job imaginable. She described a time before computers when a human touch was necessary for every transaction and when the bookkeeping and proof departments reviewed every check for valid date, signature and matching written and numerical amounts.
She processed payroll and student loans, worked as a loan clerk, answered phones, filled in at the teller window when needed and even worked for a time creating advertising and editing the bank newsletter. She supervised the Bookkeeping and Proof departments. Most recently she has served as Chief Auditor for the bank.
“I have seen the bank through a lot of changes and a lot of Presidents. There was J.G. Will, Bob Will, George Booth, Steve Hunter and now Ron Collins. Don’t ask which was my favorite, that’s not fair,” she said with a laugh. “And the bank has seen me through a lot too,” she mused, referencing wedding bells, the births of three daughters, divorce, a bout with cancer and other highs and lows that life has brought her way.
When asked about her retirement plans she said “the plan is to not come to work. It’s an un-plan. Guess I’ll have to find some new hobbies.”
“Every now and then I wonder if I really want to do this but I think it’s time,” she said. “It’s time.”
While 48 years with the same company may be a long time, her bank family is still sad
to see Kathy leave.
At her retirement party today, colleagues, family and many retired bank employees gathered to honor the bank’s longest tenured employee. Bank President Ron Collins complimented Kathy’s hard work and dedication to the bank. “Kathy always made me sleep better at night and that’s and important thing for a president. I always had confidence and for that, I thank you,” Collins said.