Brian Hendricks to retire on Feb. 16

After more than four decades of service at Fermilab, Brian Hendricks will retire on Feb. 16.

Hendricks started out as a summer worker in June 1979. He was the physics teacher at Batavia High School, and Fermilab wanted to help boost the physics program at the school by exposing him to the laboratory. He was given the choice between working on an experiment with Gene Fisk or working in the Main Control Room as an operator. Hendricks thought that working in the nerve center of the laboratory was a no-brainer, so he chose to be an accelerator operator. At the end of the summer, Hendricks asked if he could stay and become a full-time employee, and the head of operations said yes. He remained in the operations department for eight years, reaching the position of crew chief. Hendricks really enjoyed his time in operations because he was controlling this massive complex and helping physics research take place. It was also a job where he learned new things every day. Even though he enjoyed being an operator, Hendricks eventually found that he was becoming interested in programming. He then took a position in the Accelerator Controls department in the console software group, eventually becoming the group leader. After a reorganization, Hendricks moved to the central services group where he remained until retirement.


What Hendricks remembers most about his role in operations was the camaraderie with his fellow crew members. In his role in controls, the most memorable time was the preparation for Collider Run II. Another enjoyable project Hendricks remembers is creating a simple programming language called ACL for running the accelerator. Development on that language has continued until this day in order to meet user needs. Hendricks will also remember stair climbing in the high rise with his friend Yuri for over 25 years. His best memories of all are simply the people that he has worked with over the past 42+ years.


In retirement, Hendricks and his wife Gigi plan to continue living in the area. Retirement will allow them to snow bird to Florida during the coldest part of the winter. Hendricks also hopes to spend more time reading, bird watching, attending Indiana University sporting events and Indy car races.


While there may be a retirement party at some point after COVID restrictions are lifted, nothing is scheduled at this time. We wish Brian all the best in his retirement.