Hood Quarterly, winter 2004
Every year in October, as part of the annual observation of National Arts and Humanities Month, the Hood pays tribute to its dedicated volunteers by naming a Volunteer of the Year. This past fall, we were pleased to recognize the contributions of Mary Cooper. Mary has been a docent since the opening of the Hood in 1985. Throughout the past 18 years, her service has been distinguished by her interactive approach to teaching in the galleries, and she has made art come alive for many of our visitors.
Mary feels that one of the most rewarding experiences in being a docent is working with schoolchildren and hearing their natural responses to works of art. She has used creativity in other programs as well. Mary was active in the ArtVentures program from its beginning and for many years has helped the Education Department's efforts by offering programs that combine art and music. In addition, Mary has represented the Hood at the National Docent Symposium in Philadelphia.
Derrick Cartwright recently praised the contributions she makes by noting that "Mary's enthusiasm for engaging this community in the arts suggests her as an ideal colleague to receive this award. I deeply admire her spirit of volunteerism, which always goes far beyond what is asked of her."