NORMAN — As the nation celebrates Martin Luther King Jr. Day, one Norman resident will be likely be continuing to celebrate her retirement.
Pat Griffis, former records clerk, was the first African-American to retire from the Norman Police Department.
“I feel very proud,” Griffis said of her retirement. “I’m honored to be the first.”
While she said it makes her wonder why it hasn’t happened before now, she hopes it will show others it can be done.
“I set high goals for myself,” she said. “I feel proud that I I achieved those goals and I feel that I have made them (the police department) proud.”
Griffis was hired by the city in 1988, starting off at $6.50 an hour. She trained a majority of the records clerks there now, Kept the supervisor informed of everything going on and helped the public with records on a daily basis.
She said the thing she’ll miss the most is the people she worked with.
“Twenty-five years is a lot of time to spend with a group of people to not be touched in some kind of way,” Griffis said. “I’ll miss the whole department.”
However, after 25 years of work, she is looking forward to spending more time with family and having more time for her hobbies.
“I’m looking forward to traveling and spending time with my grandkids,” she said. “And fishing, sewing and canning.”
Griffis’ husband, James, has been retired for five years, and she said it has been nice to start doing things together with him again as well. Her retirement couldn’t have come at a better time, too.
James Griffis recently had some health problems, so she called her a retirement “blessing” since she now can be there to take care of him.
“I think everything fell in place really well,” she said.