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April 2, 2018
Black Heroes Week at Crystal Bridges
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Volunteer Spotlight: Denis Dean

Meet Crystal Bridges’ volunteer, Denis Dean!

Career Information:
Retired trial attorney. Volunteer at Crystal Bridges since just before November 11, 2011.

In addition to volunteering at Crystal Bridges, I present nature programs throughout Northwest Arkansas to children and adults. I like learning about nature, hiking, and traveling with my wife (Sherri) of 45 years. I am also a Northwest Arkansas Master Naturalist.

Favorite artwork or space at the museum:
I actually have two: Winter Scene in Brooklyn by Francis Guy and The Life of a Hunter: A Tight Fix by Arthur Tait.

How did you learn about the museum and what prompted you to get involved?
I read about volunteer opportunities in the newspaper before the museum opened and had additional volunteering time available, so I decided to check it out.

In what ways have you been involved as a volunteer with the museum thus far?
I’ve trained as a Museum Guide and have worked the lobby, special exhibitions, and as a Group Tour Guide, and I’ve most recently been involved in a major portion of the Architectural Guide training.

What keeps you coming back to volunteer?
I enjoy interacting with people and sharing with them what I’ve learned at the museum. I also keep coming back to educate myself.

What have you learned or how have you been personally affected from your experience with the museum?
I feel very privileged to be a part of the guide program here. It has presented me with a new set of challenges which are very fulfilling.

What do you enjoy most about your volunteer experience?
The opportunity to learn about all forms of art, including the architecture of the museum and Frank Lloyd Wright’s Bachman-Wilson House, and to share some of that knowledge with others.

What have you learned or how have you been personally affected from your experience with the museum?
I didn’t know a lot about art before getting involved at Crystal Bridges. I knew what I liked and didn’t like in the art world. Now I can experience all sorts of art with a better understanding.

Do you have a funny or inspirational story you can briefly tell about your volunteer experience?
I’ve learned that you need to keep up with the changes made at Crystal Bridges. There are so many volunteer opportunities that you’re bound to find something you’re interested in.

Anything else you would like to share?
The museum offers a great opportunity to learn, volunteer, and educate others. Do you have any advice for individuals considering volunteering with Crystal Bridges? There are volunteer opportunities to match whatever your interests are. The training received from the staff cannot be beaten, and I know because I’ve undergone a lot of volunteer training from other entities.

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