"I thought 'good luck with that,' " Edwards said during an impromptu moment at last week's annual service awards dinner for faculty and staff.
"But, it's happened."
Edwards, who retired last year after 45 years with UNMC, is credited with the development of the physician assistant profession in the military and in the state of Nebraska.
Chancellor Harold M. Maurer, M.D., told the crowd he appreciated how employees have invested their careers at UNMC.
"Show me a place with high turnover in faculty and staff and I'll show you a medical center that's going nowhere," he said.
"This is a chance to say 'thank you' and be thankful for the hundreds of employees at UNMC who every day live a commitment to UNMC's mission of health care, research, education and service to underserved populations," said John Russell, vice chancellor for business and finance and executive director of human resources.