Kent State employee won’t let retirement interfere with his job

Erica Weisburn

Sunny beaches and long naps aren’t in Paul Beasley’s retirement plans, and neither is writing parking tickets to irate students.

Beasley has been a Kent State employee for 18 years.

At 62, this parking enforcement officer is ready to get out of the cold weather, hand over the keys to his truck and move forward.

“The cold weather, for one, is what pushed me toward retirement,” he said. “I don’t want to work outside for another winter.”

Beasley was hired by Residence Services in 1988 as a custodian. He worked there for 10 years until he transferred to the Recreation and Wellness Center for a few months. For the past eight years, however, he has called Parking Services his home.

Beasley said his retirement from Parking Services next month won’t stop him from working.

He will continue his job as a custodian at Macedonia Baptist Church in Akron where he has worked for 20 years in addition to his jobs at Kent State.

Beasley’s all-around work habit is what his supervisor, Lee Tillis, will miss most.

“He didn’t really need a supervisor,” Tillis said. “If (Beasley) was doing the job, I always knew it was done right.”

Beasley’s passion for hard work began in middle school. Since his first job cleaning his aunt’s beauty salon, he hasn’t stopped working.

He worked for BF Goodrich for 19 years.

“I thought I was going to retire from there until I got laid off,” he said.

Even after the loss of this job, Beasley refused to collect unemployment.

“I usually work a few jobs at the same time,” he said. “I like to keep busy.”

Beasley is famous for his work motto: “It’s rough, but it’s fair.” No matter what job he was working at the time, he used this phrase to keep him going.

“In any job I do, I make myself have fun,” he said. “That’s the ‘fair’ part of it. You just enjoy it.”

He has written thousands of tickets, dealt with thousands of angry students and still enjoys his job.

“Some people are pleasant, some aren’t,” Beasley said. “But, I don’t let the attitudes get to me.”

The conversations he has with different people around campus is the most rewarding part of his Kent State career, Beasley said.

“Socializing and joking with people makes my job more pleasant,” he said. “I will miss that the most.”

Beasley’s positive, pleasant demeanor made the job easier for his co-workers as well, Tillis said.

“It’s going to be rough without him, that’s for sure,” Tillis said.

Contact transportation reporter Erica Weisburn at [email protected].