Community Spotlight: Itasca State Park’s Longest State Employee Retires
A storybook career that spans almost five decades is in its final chapter. Lorraine Adora Vojak is at her retirement party after working at Itasca State Park in Park Rapids for 47 years.
“I lost my husband many years ago, and well, I decided to just stay working,” said Vojak.
During her tenure, Vojak wore many hats, spending her time as a cook and even a waitress. She vividly remembers her first day on the job.
“I was cleaning cabins at the Douglas Lodge area,” said Vojak.
It’s no surprise seeing a room filled with family and friends to give Vojak a proper sendoff. Lorraine’s son, Ronald, couldn’t be more proud of his mother.
“She’s always been one of service and she works very hard,” said Ronald. “As her son, I’ve been blessed to have her as a mother.”
A cake and card shows just how much Vojak will be missed. The feeling is mutual.
“Well, I’m going to miss everybody, miss this place, but I will be back to visit,” said Vojak.
How do you recognize 47 years at Itasca State Park? With a plaque and retirement jacket to match.
Over the years, Park Manager Robert Chance has gotten to know Vojak very well.
“Dedicated, very consistent, and very loyal to the park,” said Chance.
Chance says nowadays people don’t stay but a couple of years at a job, and seeing Vojak reach this milestone is something worth celebrating. “We appreciate her service and appreciate what she’s done for the park. It’s also important for us to say goodbye to Lorraine.”
Although Vojak says she’ll miss working with and meeting nice people the most, life after retirement will be simple.
“I live on a farm, so I got lots of things to do and when you work for so many years there’s things you got to catch up on,” said Vojak.
“In her mind, I’m always going to be her 10-year-old little boy,” said Ronald. “We’re going to have a lot of time together.”