The Museum Volunteer Program
1999-2000 ANNUAL REPORT
Catherine Dueñas and Terry Friedman
It was the best of times and the most challenging of years for the Volunteer Program. With the opening of the Joseph and Mary Grimshaw Egyptian Gallery in May 1999, the activity level in the Volunteer Office began to accelerate as we increased our efforts to accommodate the numerous requests for docent-led tours for school groups and adult audiences. The months of planning, training, and preparation helped us to focus on the program's resources and mission, while at the same time continue to motivate participation, sustain interest, and generate enthusiasm within the volunteer corps for both museum and outreach programs.
The official start of scheduled docent-led tours of the Egyptian Gallery was 27 September 1999. Throughout the preceding summer months, docents familiarized themselves with the new gallery space. They utilized the time to learn more about the objects as well as to practice interactive touring techniques. Museum Docents were delighted to be back at work in the beautiful Joseph and Mary Grimshaw Egyptian Gallery. Along with the return of tours in the museum, we reinstituted the Docent Captain System for organizing morning and afternoon shifts. We would like to thank all of our museum Docent Captains for making the Museum Tours Program run so efficiently and successfully. We are grateful to Debbie Aliber, Erl Dordal, Ira Hardman, Mary Harter, Teresa Hintzke, George Junker, Nina Longley, Masako Matsumoto, Georgie Maynard, Roy Miller, Stephen Ritzel, Lucie Sandel, Deloris Sanders, Larry Scheff, Anne Schumacher, and Carole Yoshida. We could never have had such a successful year without their support.
With the increased activity within the volunteer corps, we again began to track the number of volunteer service hours per week. Volunteers now sign a time log each time they perform a volunteer function. This daily record helps to tabulate important statistical information for writing grant proposals to support the museum as well as the Museum Education and Volunteer Programs.
The Outreach Program continued to receive accolades and praise from students, educators, parents, and adults throughout metropolitan Chicago. The program has steadily grown in popularity over the past four years. Our audience base remains diverse and represents groups of all ages and cultural backgrounds. Even with the reopening of the Egyptian Gallery, many schools and community groups continue to request an outreach visit to further enhance their museum experience. The teachers feel that the slide presentation accompanied by the hands-on activities increases the students' background knowledge and thus prepares them better for the museum visit.
The Outreach Program achieved a major milestone this year. On 7 May 2000 at Abbott Middle School in Waukegan, Illinois, over 700 students were served in a single day as part of a school-wide multi-ethnic festival.
We have received many generous donations to the Outreach Program during this past year. From colorful costumes to creative hands-on activities and videos, volunteers continue to invest their time and talents helping to bring to life the "wonders of the ancient near east" through in-school docent-led learning experiences.
We would like to recognize the efforts of Denise Paul and Anne Schumacher, who compiled and cataloged written descriptions of the Egyptian materials contained in the outreach bins. Thank you for producing a valuable educational resource for the Outreach Program.
Throughout this past year, volunteers gave most generously with their financial support, contributions, and commitment to the program's success. Our thanks and appreciation to Masako Matsumoto whose gift will help us purchase handsome new name tags for the volunteers.
We would like to voice a special note of thanks to Betty Baum for helping the Volunteer Program update its office equipment. Her gift provided the funds to purchase a new state-of-the-art iMac computer for the Volunteer Program and a laser printer for Museum Education.
We would also like to take this opportunity to acknowledge, and express our gratitude for, the many generous memorial donations that were contributed to the Oriental Institute in memory of George Junker.
Volunteer Recruitment and Training
Although a formal volunteer training class was not offered this year, several enthusiastic and highly motivated individuals were recruited. Through independent study and group mentoring, they were able to join the program. We applaud their determination and hard work. Welcome aboard to Joe Diamond, Tom Duda, Louis Gudger, Nancy Huth, Sriram Kanteti, Nicholas Lezak, Sherif Marcus, Ila Patlogen, and Roxanne Volkmann.
Our appreciation and thanks to Mari Terman, who completely revised, streamlined, and updated the volunteer application form. Thanks to her efforts, we now have a concise and beautifully formatted new application.
Volunteer Recognition Awards and Annual Holiday Luncheon
Each year faculty, staff, and volunteers gather to enjoy a festive holiday celebration for December Docent Day. The popular program includes a guest speaker, a volunteer recognition ceremony, and a lovely holiday luncheon. This year's special event took place on Monday 6 December.
The morning program featured John Larson, Museum Archivist, whose lecture was "Collecting with James Henry Breasted in Egypt." His talk was a fascinating account of Breasted's life and times as an Egyptologist, collector, and visionary.
The morning's activities continued with Volunteer Recognition Awards Congratulations and bravo to this year's twenty-two award recipients!
5 Year Honorees
Barbara Storms Baird, Catherine Mardikes
Wanda Bolton, Robert Randolph
Janet Calkins, Helaine Staver
Hazel Cramer, Les Stermer
Mary Harter, Pamela Wickliffe
10 Year Honorees
Ruth Hyman, Agnethe Rattenborg
Sandra Jacobsohn, Patrick Regnery
Caryl Mikrut, Bernard Shelley
15 Year Honorees
Rebecca Binkley, Gordon Evison
Catherine Dueñas, Alice James
20 Year Honoree
25 Year Honoree
30 Year Honorees
Muriel Nerad, Eleanor Swift
Following the conclusion of the morning program, volunteers were joined by the faculty and staff of the Oriental Institute to enjoy a lovely luncheon at the Quadrangle Club. Our thanks and appreciation to Gene Gragg, Director of the Oriental Institute, for graciously underwriting this festive occasion and to Tim Cashion, Director of Development, for providing complimentary memberships to all the Volunteer Recognition Award recipients. We would also like to give a special note of thanks to Jean Grant for taking some wonderful photographs of the day's events.
Docent Days Become Volunteer Days; Docent Digest Becomes Volunteer Voice
Docent Day lectures and discussion sessions continue to attract a large and enthusiastic audience of volunteers. These monthly seminars provide a unique opportunity for volunteers to continue their education in a structured, interactive learning environment. These sessions have been an integral part of the Volunteer Program from the very beginning. As we turned the corner of the twenty-first century, a subtle yet important change took place to make these classes more inviting and inclusive for the entire volunteer corps. The name was changed from "Docent Day" to "Volunteer Day." Along with this change, we changed the "Docent Digest" to the "Volunteer Voice." These small changes have been well received by everyone as we reach out to include all docents and volunteers who continue to learn and work in various areas of the Institute and the Museum.
This year's Volunteer Day program topics covered a broad spectrum of fascinating subject matter. Our thanks to Aaron Burke, Peter Dorman, Norman Golb, John Larson, Carol Meyer, Robert Ritner, Martha Roth, Emily Teeter, Joan Westenholtz, and Volunteer Sheldon Newman for their informative lectures, training sessions, and continued support of the Volunteer Program.
In addition to general areas of interest, three special training sessions were offered to acquaint docents and volunteers with the historical background and cultural uniqueness of ancient Persia. These sessions helped to prepare volunteers for the reopening of the Persian Gallery. Our appreciation to Abbas Alizadeh, Mary Shea, Matthew Stolper, Donald Whitcomb, and Karen Wilson for providing these special classes.
On 10 January faculty, staff, and volunteers gathered for a lovely midwinter tea reception and "fireside chat" at the home of President and Mrs. Sonnenschein. Our guest speaker was Martha Roth, who spoke about the Chicago Assyrian Dictionary and the many complicated issues involving the production of a dictionary. Her talk broadened our understanding and appreciation for this enormous collaborative research effort taking place on the third floor of the Oriental Institute.
A special note of appreciation to Elizabeth Sonnenschein for hosting this special program for the past six years. Her hospitality, friendship, and interest in the Oriental Institute have meant so much to all of us. Beth, thank you for adding so much grace and dignity to the entire university community.
Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum and The Field Museum
On 8 November docents, volunteers, and museum staff members enjoyed a field trip to the Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum at the Chicago Academy of Sciences. The museum, at its dramatic new lakefront location, provided a magnificent backdrop to view and experience nature from both inside and out. Volunteer Services Coordinator Steve Bunyiak greeted everyone and gave an informative overview of the museum exhibits. He also highlighted the building's architectural details and the many ecosystems surrounding this impressive structure. The warm weather was delightful, and all who attended appreciated the opportunity to explore the academy's state-of-the-art science and education center as well as lunch at the Butterfly Cafe.
On 13 March volunteers enjoyed an extraordinary Volunteer Day on location at The Field Museum. The morning program featured Professor Norman Golb who lectured on "The Dead Sea Scrolls: Their Jerusalem Origins and Their Public Importance." His talk was very insightful and helped everyone examine both the information as well as the historical scholarship surrounding these important manuscripts. Immediately following the lecture, the volunteers had the opportunity to view firsthand this thought-provoking exhibit. We would like to express our appreciation to Mary Ann Bloom, Bob Cantu, and the staff of The Field Museum for their assistance with this important collaborative program. It was a memorable field trip for everyone.
We were delighted this year to have the opportunity to work with three energetic and motivated interns, Emily Schuttenberg from the University of Chicago Laboratory Schools and David Jakubowski and Michael Tafel from the University of Illinois at Chicago. From administrative tasks to Outreach Programs, these energetic and creative interns contributed a great deal to the Volunteer Program.
This past year the Oriental Institute lost two devoted and loyal volunteers, George Junker and Peggy Kovacs. Their gifts of time, support, talents, and skills helped to enrich the Volunteer program, the Museum, and the Institute. They will be missed, and we will treasure their valuable contributions and years of service.
Under the careful guidance and supervision of Debbie Aliber, our Docent Librarian, the library flourished this past year. Our collection has continued to expand, aided by the many generous donations and contributions of faculty, staff, and volunteers. This year the library was reorganized by geographic area (Egypt, Iran, Israel, Mesopotamia, etc.). The books are now alphabetized by author within each area. This modification has made the library more user-friendly and facilitates the search for a subject of particular interest.
In Retrospect and Reflection
Throughout its thirty-four year history, the Volunteer Program has adapted well to changing times, while still maintaining the highest standards for its volunteers. We gratefully acknowledge the friendship and support of the faculty and staff of the Oriental Institute for making this possible. Throughout the years, they have been our teachers and mentors, continually sharing their wealth of knowledge, sparking our curiosity, and supplying countless resources for our continuing education. Their accessibility and involvement motivate and inspire the high level of docent and volunteer commitment throughout many vital areas of the Oriental Institute and the museum.
We would like to thank our colleagues in Museum Education - Judy Chavin, Education Programs Associate; Megan Kossiakoff, Education Programs Assistant; Carole Krucoff, Head of Education and Public Programs; Anna Rochester, School and Family Programs Coordinator; and Michelle Schwegmann, Education Programs Assistant, for their faithful support throughout this past year. In a whirlwind of activity, they are the voice of reason and reassurance.
The new century provided a moment in time to reflect upon the Volunteer Program's past accomplishments while at the same time realistically set our vision for the program's future goals and direction in the twenty-first century. Preliminary plans are under way for a new program, Docent-on-Line, an interactive learning exchange through Internet access, which will link educators and students directly to a docent who will be able to answer their questions with the mere click of a computer mouse. Whether through in-house tours, outreach visits, or cyberspace access, the Oriental Institute Volunteer Program can now share its rich experience and knowledge with an expanded public audience.
The hard work and dedication of the volunteers continue to demonstrate how they are active contributing partners and valued human resources within the Institute's ongoing operation. Collectively and individually they are a rare and treasured asset.
Advisors to the Volunteer Program
Carlotta Maher, Peggy Grant, Janet Helman
Irv Diamond, Nancy Gould, Richard Harter
Irene Glasner, Peggy Grant, Karen Terras
Teri Gillespie, William Gillespie
Jennifer Benedict, Betsy Kremers, Joyce Weil
Richard Harter, Helaine Staver, Carole Yoshida
Head Librarian - Debbie Aliber
Peggy Grant, Sandra Jacobsohn, Deloris Sanders
Debby Halpern, Georgie Maynard, Daila Shefner
Patricia Hume, Kathleen Mineck
Epigraphic Survey and Chicago House
Carlotta Mahe,r Crennan Ray, Elinor Smith
Göltepe/Kestel Project and Amuq Valley Regional Project
Joan Friedmann, Bud Haas, Betsy Kremers, Daila Shefner
Hittite Dictionary Project
Irv Diamond, Kathleen Mineck, Anne Schumacher
Irene Glasner, Denise Paul
Iranian Prehistoric Project
Debbie Aliber, Mary Harter, Kitty Picken
Jane Belcher, Janet Helman, Rita Picken
Rebecca Binkley, Lee Herbst, Patrick Regnery*
Dorothy Blindt, Teresa Hintzke, Stephen Ritzel
Wanda Bolton, Patricia Hume, Adrienne Runge
Myllicent Buchanan, Nancy Huth, Evelyn Ruskin
Janet Calkins, Alice James, Laura Sanchez
David Covil,* George Junker, Deloris Sanders
Hazel Cramer, Henriette Klawans, Larry Scheff
Joe Diamond, Nina Longley, Anne Schumacher
Erl Dordal, Jo Lucas, Daila Shefner
Tom Duda, Sherif Marcus, Helaine Staver
Margaret Foorman, Kay Matsumoto, Bernadette Strnad
Nancy Gould,* Georgie Maynard, Mari Terman
Bud Haas, Roy Miller, Karen Terras
Cissy Haas, Kathleen Mineck, Roxanne Volkmann
Debby Halpern, George Morgan, Carole Yoshida
Ira Hardman, Denise Paul
*Please note that these names were inadvertently omitted from the 1998/99 Annual Report.
Alison Carter, Sandra Jacobsohn, Helaine Staver
Hazel Cramer, Stephanie Reed, Carole Yoshida
Peggy Grant, Lillian Schwartz
Patricia Hume, Mary Shea
Museum Education and Family Programs
Debbie Aliber, George Junker, Stephen Ritzel
Rebecca Binkley, Nina Longley, Deloris Sanders
Kristina Cooper, Kathleen Mineck, Karen Terras
Erl Dordal, Ila Patlogen, Carole Yoshida
Bernadine Basile, Janet Helman, George Morgan
Rebecca Binkley, Lee Herbst, Denise Paul
Richard Blindt, Jeanne Junker, JoAnn Putz
Myllicent Buchanan, MaryJo Khuri, Dawn Prena
Janet Calkins, Henriette Klawans, Stephen Ritzel
Hazel Cramer, Betsy Kremers, Evelyn Ruskin
Erl Dordal, Nina Longley, Deloris Sanders
Bettie Dwinell, Masako Matsumoto, Larry Scheff
Bud Haas, Georgie Maynard, Anne Schumacher
Cissy Haas, Robert McGuiness, Emily Schuttenberg
Debby Halpern, Pat McLaughlin, Michael Tafel
Ira Hardman, Caryl Mikrut, Karen Terras
Mary Harter, Roy Miller, Carole Yoshida
Richard Harter, Kathleen Mineck, Agnes Zellner
Debbie Aliber, Irene Glasner, Mara Terras, Carole Yoshida
Diana Grodzins, Andree Wood
Professional Consultant / Trainer
Irv Diamond, Kathleen Mineck
Readers for Hans Güterbock
George Junker, Anne Schumacher
Debbie Aliber, Janet Helman, Lillian Schwartz
Leila Foster, Lorrie Luther, Richard Watson
Peggy Grant, Georgie Maynard, Peggy Wick
Mary Grimshaw, Ila Patlogen, Lauren Zych
Substitute Suq Docents
Janet Helman, Jo Jackson
Barbara Storms Baird, Ruth Hyman, Rochelle Rossin
Muriel Brauer, Elizabeth Lassers, Jane Thain
Meg Dorman, Georgie Maynard, Norma van der Meulen
Patty Dunkel, Peggy Kovacs, Felicia Whitcomb
Peggy Grant, Agnethe Rattenborg
Suq Behind-the-Scenes Docent
Suq Jewelry Designer
Norma van der Meulen
Suq Office and Stock Room
Elizabeth Baum, Laurie Fish, Eleanor Swift
Charlotte Collier, Carol Green, Vida Wentz
Mary D'Ouville, Dorothy Mozinski
Revised: February 7, 2007