Tonight, many people from GMU's econ department celebrated Betty Tillman's 80th birthday and retirement with a special dinner in honor of her. It was held at the Marriott over in Falls Church. Betty served as Nobel Laureate James Buchanan's secretary for nearly 45 years and played a huge role in uniting so many people in the study of Public Choice.
It was a wonderful celebration of an even more wonderful lady. Don Boudreaux was the master of ceremonies and speakers included Gordon Tullock, Robert Tollison, Tyler Cowen, Hartmut Kliemt, Dwight Lee, and James Buchanan. Several letters of love and gratitude were also read, including one from Armen Alchian. GMU's president, Alan Merten, was also there. Towards the end of the dinner, they asked for people to raise their hands who had been graduate students helped by Betty at UVA, Virginia Tech, and GMU. Many from all three schools were in attendance.
Overall, I'd guess there were at least 150 people in attendance from all over the country including many of Betty's family. Betty is someone well loved by so many and it is very sad to see her leave GMU. She will be dearly missed.
Here are a few pictures of "Momma Betty", Nobel Laureate James Buchanan, and I taken last month at a smaller birthday celebration for her.
Happy birthday, Momma Betty!!!