• Patricia Crotteau, kiosk (24 years).
  • Brian Fenderson, tour guide (10 years).
  • Melva Galligher, store (9 years).
  • Ray Hansen, usher (15 years).

About Capitol Volunteers

This group of four volunteers come from different backgrounds and are different ages. They share a common love of Oregon, the Capitol Building and its visitors. They represent various volunteer jobs that assist visitors in the Capitol, including visitor’s kiosk, tour guide, Capitol store and usher.

For each of them their prior work experiences or their personality informed which volunteer job they pursued, and why they love what they do. Whether giving visitors tips on where to visit in Salem or around Oregon; customizing their tours for a particular class tour; delighting in the Oregon-made item they have to offer visitors, or making sure everyone feels welcome at the Capitol, they all bring much more to their service than what the description of their volunteer post includes.

Although their volunteer tasks are each different, they all expressed how much their work is intertwined with the business of the Capitol, legislating laws that govern Oregonians. When controversial legislation is being debated, the tensions ripple through the building and can affect how they do their work.

Still, the benefits their volunteer service are great. Each of them talked about how valued they feel in their service and it shows in the multiple years, or decades, each of them has been volunteering. They, their current cohort, and their predecessors illuminate the important role volunteers play in making Oregon’s Capitol welcoming to all.

– Interview recorded November 8, 2019