Waukesha County Museum Names Volunteer of the Year
Whitefish Bay man recently started as Mr. Boynton during "Night at the Museum.
Editor’s Note: The following information was provided to Waukesha Patch via a news release from the Waukesha County Museum.
The Waukesha County Museum announced the winner of this year’s Willard Griswold Volunteer of the Year Award at last night’s annual Volunteer Appreciation Dinner.
The award was given to Richard Whitaker from Whitefish Bay. Whitaker has volunteered in the museum’s education department as a docent since 2003. He is often requested by school groups for tours because of his wonderful teaching style and ability to engage children in learning about the past. Most recently, he volunteered for the museum’s annual Night at the Museum event playing the cast part of “Mr. Boynton,” the prominent jeweler who was sued in court for the famous Eagle Diamond.
“It is wonderful to have volunteers who are so passionate about educating our youth about history. The fact that Richard lives outside of Waukesha County and drives such a distance to assist with school tours and other education programs makes him stand out as a volunteer of incredible dedication. He was very deserving of the award,” said Kirsten Lee Villegas museum executive director.
The museum also announced that volunteers provided over 6,000 hours of time last fiscal year, which calculates to more than $128,000 of in-kind service hours donated to the museum by volunteers. Individuals volunteer in several capacities at the museum including cleaning artifacts, cataloging historic documents, answering phones, leading tour groups, and assisting with education programs. For more information about volunteering at the museum contact 262-521-2859 or visit the museum’s website at www.waukeshacountymuseum.org.
The volunteer of the year award is named after Willard Griswold (1884-1984) who was an attorney and life-long resident of Waukesha County. As a young man, Griswold was described as studious, ambitious, and possessing unusual gifts as a public speaker.
He served as president of the Waukesha County Historical Society from 1951-1961.
During his tenure the museum’s signature membership publication The Landmark was established and the Waukesha County Historical Marker Program was instituted. Griswold served on the society’s board for another 10 years as president emeritus and was cited by the American Association for State and Local History for his leadership and writing in 1974. He published several articles in The Landmark and other history magazines, wrote the early history of the First Congregational Church on its 125th anniversary in 1963, and wrote 50 articles for the Waukesha Freeman Centennial publication of 1959.