Monday, Aug. 13, was a bright and sunny day, perfect for the Docent Awards Luncheon. The yearly event honors the museum’s many dedicated docents—from the new to the very familiar.

This year, the Honolulu Museum of Art was excited to give out the Museum Treasure Award—granted to those who show a deep commitment to the life of the museum—for the first time ever. The awardee was Susan Palmore, whose leadership has been greatly appreciated by the museum. Not only did she volunteer for over 100 hours this year by leading the gamut of tours, but she also helped strengthen the Docent program via the From Docents For Docents program. You could catch Palmore mentoring docents, bringing inactive docents back onto the museum floors, and also offering herself as a stand-in for any tour that needed to be filled. The museum is lucky to have her,

The museum also gave out 10 Anna Rice Cooke Awards, given to those who perpetuate Anna Rice Cooke’s mission through docent tours. The winners this year were: Maeona Mendelson, a tour master; Anne Miller, who knows how to spark curiosity in the youngest museum-goers; Mary Flynn, who isn’t afraid to tackle the tough subjects; Jacqueline Wesolosky, who has earned a docent pin for almost every year since 1997; Carol Bonham, the book club co-founder; Joyce Azama, the Docent Room organizer; Judie Malmgren, Spalding House connoisseur; Mac McMorrow, equal parts knowledgeable and funny; Fred Smith, who set the standard for the stARTer Lead Docent position; and Marilyn Smith, who does what Fred does, only backwards.

This year, 51 docents received pins for contributing more than 50 hours of touring.  That’s not the only impressive statistic. Nine docents volunteered 100 or more hours, with the highest number being 140 hours (that’s almost six days of just touring!)

As if we needed more definitive proof that docents are an invaluable part of our museum.

If you’re interested in becoming a docent, now is your time! HoMA is still accepting docent applications for our 2018 Class, which starts Sept. 10. Apply at the link here