Sue Darden and Joseph Akinosun

At the 2023 EVMS Service & Recognition Awards Ceremony, held Nov. 15 at Norfolk Waterside Marriott, the institution honored its longest-serving faculty and staff in five-year increments beginning at five years and continuing through 45 years of service.

“We are here to recognize the accomplishments of our faculty and staff — our stars,” says Alfred Abuhamad, MD, President, Provost and Dean of the School of Medicine and the Mason C. Andrews Distinguished Professor in Obstetrics and Gynecology. “We appreciate your dedication to EVMS and EVMS Medical Group, and we admire your outstanding work to improve the health of the community.”

This year, EVMS has one individual who has dedicated 40 years to EVMS and four who have devoted 45 years of continuous service. They join an exclusive group, and EVMS offers them very special thanks and appreciation.

Read more about these employees below and see the complete list of service milestones.

View the event photo gallery

45 Years of Service

Andre Cheatham and Alfred Abuhamad

Andre’ Cheatham
Andre’ Cheatham joined EVMS in 1978. He started as Receiving Clerk in Materials Management then advanced to Receiving Supervisor, later serving in the Procurement Department as Junior then Senior Buyer. In 2006, with his knowledge and expertise in these areas, he advanced to his current position as Purchasing Manager. Over the last four and a half decades, Mr. Cheatham has come to enjoy the positive rapport he has built with faculty, staff and vendors.

Clarence Johnson and Alfred Abuhamad

Clarence Johnson Jr.
Clarence Johnson Jr. began his career at EVMS in Housekeeping but quickly found a new passion — audiovisuals — and joined Media Services. On that team, he has left an indelible mark. Mr. Johnson brings a solid understanding of AV technology and is respected by EVMS faculty and
staff. He is a trusted resource in providing end-user training on AV equipment — and a friend and colleague few can imagine working without.

Edward Karotkin and Alfred Abuhamad

Edward Karotkin, MD
Edward Karotkin, MD, joined CHKD’s staff 35 years ago. At the time, he recognized the potential of CHKD to grow alongside the — at the time — relatively new Eastern Virginia Medical School. Since then, Dr. Karotkin has been a dedicated physician, educator and community volunteer. In addition to serving as Professor of Pediatrics, he is Medical Director of the CHKD Resource Mothers Program and Chief Medical Officer of The Assist Group. He embodies the spirit and mission of EVMS.

Gerald Pepe

Gerald Pepe, PhD
Gerald Pepe, PhD, came to EVMS in 1978 as an Associate Professor in Physiology. He was named Professor and Chair in 1985 and served in that position until 2005. He served as Associate Dean of Research from 1995 to 1997 and was appointed Dean and Provost in 2004. Dr. Pepe returned as Chair of Physiological Sciences in 2011. Today, he continues to teach and perform research and to set the standard at EVMS for excellence.

40 Years of Service

Sue Darden and Alfred Abuhamad

Sue Darden
Sue Darden’s four decades-long tenure at EVMS in the Parking Department has been marked by her exceptional dedication and positivity. Her unwavering commitment brightens the day of all who interact with her. She has made the potentially stressful task of parking a more pleasant experience for EVMS patients, visitors and staff throughout the decades. In improving others’ lives each day, she is a credit and inspiration to all of us at EVMS.

Pictured at top: Sue Darden (left) celebrates 40 years of service to EVMS in 2023, and Joseph Akinosun celebrates his first five years.