Muriel Lippman was slightly late for her own birthday party. But when the elevators opened on the concourse level of Mayo Clinic Building in Scottsdale, Lippman, flanked by family and friends, was ready. Cheering commenced, and everyone was ready to party.
The occasion was something of a milestone. Lippman, a longtime volunteer at Mayo Clinic, was turning 100. Her colleagues in Volunteer Services decorated the office with balloons, brought in an elaborate cake, and created a crown for her silver hair.
Family and friends say Lippman is no ordinary centenarian. She lives alone with her devoted cat companion, drives a new car, and according to her 69-year-old son, Irwin Siegel, doesn't fall for robocalls. Lippman also works out at the gym five times a week.
When a reporter from the local Fountain Hills Times newspaper asked about Lippman's 20 years as a volunteer at Mayo Clinic, she said simply, "I really enjoy working with the people at Mayo."
"My mother has been coming to Mayo Clinic to volunteer every Monday for 19 years," Siegel says. "She especially loved volunteering in the Oncology area. She says those patients need comfort the most because they're scared. She encourages them. She has never met a stranger."
Jackie Barr, a manager for Volunteer Services in Arizona, agrees that Lippman is an inspiration. "Her energy, enthusiasm and passion for life are contagious. Her love for Mayo Clinic and our patients motivates us all."
The Volunteer Services program in Arizona has more than 600 volunteers who serve in more than 120 areas across Mayo Clinic in Arizona. These volunteers logged nearly 63,500 hours in 2018, supplementing and complementing the efforts of staff while supporting Mayo's mission.