Few people know the existence of the St. Louis Board of Public Service, the department of City government responsible for the design and construction management of all public works. Fewer still know that for more than two decades and six BPS presidents, a key constant at BPS ' and at City Hall was Darlene Plump, its Secretary.
I had known Darlene from my earliest days in City Hall as one of the people who best exemplifies the meaning of civil servant. Her friends note that her personal motto was "help the Citizen no matter what, they are the reason for your job.'? Anyone who has visited 1200 Market Street on business can appreciate how wonderfully useful it is to meet a person who will pause in her business to find out where in the Hall you have to go to find the service you need. And Darlene did that. She also organized wedding receptions and birthdays for co-workers, passed the hat for a variety of worthy causes, and ' particularly reached out to those wrestling with personal and family problems.
Darlene retired in 2007, a loss to City Hall. She passed away on January 5, a loss to her City. May she rest in peace.