Cathy Taylor has been at Johnson University for 17 years. She has served as an Academic Advisor for many students and an Administrative Assistant for the late Dr. Vernon Eaton and Dr. Daniel Overdorf.
“I have been blessed with absolutely the two best bosses on campus,” Cathy said. “So I’ve been very thankful for the opportunity to work under both of them.”
While she has been at Johnson for 17 years, her story of getting to the university has a lot of different twists and turns.
She was raised in Covington, Tenn. Some of the small towns around her would host dances on the weekends where teenagers could come and socialize. During one of those dances, a “cute boy” named Gary came up to her and asked her to dance.
“He was cute but he had these sandals on that looked like Jesus sandals. I thought ‘well I don’t know about that.’” Cathy said. “I asked him where he went to school and all I caught was that he was a junior. … I thought he meant he was a junior in high school and I thought ‘well I just graduated from high school and I am not about to stoop to going out with a junior in high school.’”
She later learned from one of her friends that the boy had meant he was a junior in college. The next weekend Cathy agreed to go on a date with the boy and in 1966 she married her husband Gary.
Years later, when Gary took a job raising funs for Christian organizations, they moved to Knoxville so that they could be near their son and his family. Once they got settled, Cathy began looking for a job. She had been a teacher’s aide in public schools for 14 years and knew she did not want to continue doing that. Cathy put in an application at Johnson and received a call a few days later from Dr. Vernon Eaton, who asked her to come in and interview to be his secretary. She started on Sept. 17, 2001.
Since starting at Johnson 17 years ago, she has served many students as their academic advisor and also served as the Administrative Assistant for Eaton and Overdorf.
Cathy says that one thing she wants to pass on to everyone she meets is that they should remember that God will guide them.
She mentioned a time that she went to a wedding and there was a Bible where people could mark verses for the couple to remember throughout their marriage. She marked Proverbs 3:5-6.
“Now that doesn’t mean that we’re going to walk this golden road and never have anything, but what it means is He’s going to be there,” Cathy said. “Through thick, thin, problems, tears, joys and if we look to Him, He will guide us. Sometimes He is silent and we have to wait, but in His silence He still gives us comfort. I think that fits any stage of life.”