Drago retires to pursue volunteer work

Photo by Claire Murray | Photo Editor. Linda Drago, vice president for legal affairs at Duquesne, sits in her office in Old Main. Drago announced her retirement last week after 22 years at the University.

Photo by Claire Murray | Photo Editor. Linda Drago, vice president for legal affairs at Duquesne, sits in her office in Old Main. Drago announced her retirement last week after 22 years at the University.

By Brandon Addeo | The Duquesne Duke

Retirement does not mean that one can no longer have an impact on the community.

After 22 years of working at Duquesne, this is a mentality that vice president for legal affairs Linda Drago will take into her own retirement, which was announced in an email to students and faculty last week.

“I’ve always wanted to do volunteer work, and this will give me an opportunity to do that,” Drago said.

Following a long career, Drago will now focus her efforts on volunteering at Pittsburgh’s Holy Angels Parish and at animal activist organizations Animal Friends and Going Home Greyhounds Inc.

Drago, of Carrick, said that her volunteer pursuits were only a factor in her decision to retire.

“I’m reaching that age where most people think about retirement,” Drago said. “I decided that I would like to begin doing some of the volunteer work that I want to do while I still have the health and energy to do it.”

Drago, whose retirement begins effective June 30, has previously served as a staff attorney and general counsel, and was appointed vice president of legal affairs in 2009. She also currently serves as secretary on Duquesne’s board of directors.

Duquesne president Charles Dougherty praised Drago in a written statement.

“Linda’s prudent counsel and significant overall contributions during these years helped guide the University through multiple challenges, many of them unprecedented,” Dougherty said. “She has been a trusted advisor to Duquesne faculty, administrators and board members.”

Duquesne announced Jan. 12 that current associate general counsel and executive director of compliance Madelyn Reilly will be Drago’s successor.

Drago, who has worked with Reilly for five years, described Reilly as a “bright and talented” attorney.

“Madelyn has proven herself to be a thorough, innovative and gifted attorney,” Dougherty said in a statement. “We are fortunate indeed to have her to turn to in this time of transition in the legal affairs office.”

Reilly, a Duquesne law school graduate, said she is “honored” to receive this appointment, and will bring a positive mindset to the office.

“I hope to bring an open door and open dialogue with the University community,” Reilly said of her appointment. “Duquesne is a very special place and I am blessed to be a part of it.”

Drago graduated from Duquesne with a degree in psychology in 1972, and would later pursue and obtain a law degree from the University of Pittsburgh in 1983.

“My love had always been law,” Drago said.

Drago already serves in several community organizations. She is the chairman for the finance council of Holy Angels Parish, a member of the Animal Friends advisory board and the board director and adoption consultant for Going Home Greyhounds Inc.

Drago said she is currently in the process of having one of her own dogs trained as a therapy dog. She said she looks forward to taking that dog to places like senior homes, children’s homes and rehab centers.

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