Sam Brill, who joined UF in 1977 and the College of Dentistry in 1980, retired on March 31, 2009. The college hosted a farewell reception on March 23 and commemorated the day by declaring it “Sam I Am” day. Faculty, staff and students wore “Sam I Am” stickers, enjoyed refreshments (there were no green eggs or ham in sight), and took the time to share favorite stories about Brill.
Brill said one of his strongest memories about the college will be how he and many others gathered together to watch the events of 9/11 unfold on a TV he set up in a hallway on the third floor of the Dental Tower, “We sometimes tend to describe where we work by the physical location, as in Dental Tower but it was obvious on that day we are really ‘family.’ We were separated from our real families until we were given administrative leave. As people gathered, we comforted each other as best we could.”
Brill served on the Special Event Planning Committee for the college for many years and up until his retirement, and threw himself into the events wearing costumes to match the theme that were always topped off with a camera around his neck (he even took photos at his retirement party).
He says he is proud of his service to a college that always shows its “heart” when it comes to helping others such as supporting the UF Community Campaign, Relay for Life, mission trips to foreign countries to provide dental care, the Heart Walk, and many more.
“Although I won’t be part of the daily activities of the college, it’ll always be a part of me. I truly treasure the bonds we built together,” he said.
Sam wore many hats during his employment with the college but will be best remembered as the college’s official photographer. His humor, willingness to assist with any project, and his amazing talents will be missed.