This 90-year-old has been doing the same job for 70 years and absolutely loves it

Be prepared to feel inspired by this amazing woman… (or just feel very lazy in comparison)

elena griffing
elena griffing
(Image credit: Rex Features (Shutterstock))

Be prepared to feel inspired by this amazing woman… (or just feel very lazy in comparison)

Want some work ethic inspiration or just in need of a feel-good story to get you through the week? Let us introduce Elena Griffing: probably the most loyal, dedicated (and happiest) employee of all time.

At 90 years old, Elena has just celebrated her 70th year working for San Francisco Bay Area hospital – Yes you read that correctly, her 70th year. And she couldn’t be happier. In fact, she's refusing to stop anytime soon.

Since starting work at the hospital on April 10th 1946 at just 20 years old, Elena has held several different positions. First working in the laboratory as a sidekick to the Pathologist, she the progressed to working alongside the hospital’s founder back in its early days when it was called Alta Bates Community Hospital (and when it was legal to be paid wages of £1756 a year).

70 years down the line, she now holds the role of Patient Relations Representative and must be the most dedicated member of staff ever.

‘I can’t wait to come to work every day’ she told the New York Post, ‘I enjoy everything I can do to be of service. Truly, it’s the patient that counts. If it’s helping someone, it’s my bag.’

The average time that most employees spend with the same company is four and a half years - meaning that Elena has done a whopping 14 times more than the norm. We don’t know about you but we feel pretty pathetic for getting commitment scared over our two-year temporary contracts now.

If Elena’s dedication wasn’t something to behold already, just you wait. In the 70 long years of work that she has devoted to the American hospital, she has taken just four days of her sick leave. Now we feel even more embarrassed – especially upon hearing that she willingly came into work the day after having her appendix removed when we'd happily take time off for menstrual cramps.

Now insisting that she will keep working ‘until they throw [her] out or carry [her] out in a box’ (yikes), we can all take a bit of inspiration from Elena – 90 years old and still more motivated than most.

Jenny Proudfoot
Features Editor

Jenny Proudfoot is an award-winning journalist, specialising in lifestyle, culture, entertainment, international development and politics. She has worked at Marie Claire UK for seven years, rising from intern to Features Editor and is now the most published Marie Claire writer of all time. She was made a 30 under 30 award-winner last year and named a rising star in journalism by the Professional Publishers Association.