Labin “L.T.” Woodlief Jr. has worked for NC State University for 45 years. And he’s eyeing the big 5-0.
Woodlief, a research specialist in the Department of Biological and Agricultural Engineering, received an award for this feat at the university’s recent Service Awards ceremony.
He has a broad range of skills and technical experience that allow him to provide critical assistance in everything from mechanical and electrical equipment repair to helping faculty and grad students solve complex problems both in the field and around Weaver Labs. His colleagues describe him as “a truly dedicated employee,” one who “arrives early and ready to get going.”
Read on to get to know the “ultimate right-hand man.”
What led you to NC State?
I started to school here in the fall of 1969 (Ag. Institute). I like the place and never left.
What positions have you held throughout your career?
My first job, in 1971, was a greenhouse manager for the Phytotron, then in 1974, [I became] an Agricultural Research Technician in Biological and Agricultural Engineering. My title was later changed to research specialist.
What do you enjoy most about your job today?
The people. I have been very fortunate to have been able to work with a lot of different people on a lot of interesting projects over the years. I have worked and traveled to almost all 100 counties and research stations across the state. But it all comes down to having very good people to work with at BAE.
What was it like receiving your service award from the chancellor?
Being the only one there with 45 years of service, I wondered, have I stayed to long? … It was very nice, and meeting with the chancellor was a nice surprise. He said he was probably the only person at the table who knew what the Phytotron was.
What are your plans for the future? Aiming for another decade or two?
I plan to work a little longer … I don’t know how long, but a lot of my co-workers want me to go for “50.” We’ll see.