Campus Notebook: Old-School Editing

Posted June 1, 2009 at 6:05pm

Virginia Saunders has more than six decades of memories at the Government Printing Office, from rooting on the agency’s softball team to attending dances in one of the building’s large rooms.

[IMGCAP(1)]The 82-year-old recently celebrated her 63rd year with the agency — she started in 1946 — and has no plans to leave.

“I never thought I would thank the good Lord for work,— Saunders said in a press release. “Retirement has crossed my mind, but what else would I do? This is where my heart is.—

For 40 years, Saunders has been responsible for the Congressional Serial Set, which is the compilation of all records and documents for each session of Congress. She still edits by hand, rather than using a computer.

In 1989, Saunders noticed that the House and Senate has identical appendixes for the Iran-Contra report and suggested they be bound in one copy — saving taxpayers $600,000.

In a statement, Public Printer Robert Tapella called her enthusiasm “contagious.—

“Her contributions to GPO and our nation are truly remarkable,— he said.

“She has given her life to federal service and I think she’s an excellent role model for all employees at GPO,— he added.

Before coming to GPO, Saunders worked for a year as a clerk typist at the FBI.

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